Monday, December 21, 2015

Tower Sieging with Dragon Lance

The following heroes can siege a tower without getting hit, once they have a Dragon Lance.  Towers have a range of 700.  These heroes have >700 with the Lance.

For reference, the Dragon Lance is:
+10 Damage
+10 Attack Speed
+10 Strength
+130 Range (Ranged heroes only)
Can be disassembled
---> Made from Quarterstaff + Ogre Club (no recipe)
---> Transition to Orchid/Butterfly + BKB/Sange

**Heroes are sorted by Role, then by Range (descending), then alphabetically.  Range data from

Carries & Semi-Carries where Range >700 w/Lance:
  • Lina
  • Mirana
  • Clinkz
  • Drow
  • Windrunner
  • Nature's Prophet
  • Medusa
  • Silencer
  • Invoker
  • Death Prophet
  • Viper
Supports or non-right click semi-carries, Range >700 w/Lance
  • Techies
  • Arc Warden
  • Oracle
  • Witch Doctor
  • Warlock
  • Visage
  • Skywrath
  • Rubick
  • Pugna
  • Lion
  • Leshrac
  • Keeper
  • Disruptor
  • Crystal Maiden
  • Chen
  • Ancient Apparition
  • Io

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Global Mobility - Abuses and Synergies with Io

Hero Spotlight:  Io

I was reading the dotapedia on Io/Wisp, and it occurs to me that:

a) he's under-utilized and under-practiced at the pub level
b) if you and a carry practiced with him, you'd have a potent weapon on your arsenal
c) you could build a team around global mobility that would make it disgusting.

Things you need to know about Io:
- He doesn't give health regen to his tethered ally if he's at full HP
- He DOES pass mana to his tethered ally even at full mana.
- He's squishy.  He needs at least some items to make him less squishy (Bracer/Urn/etc).
- You only really need 1 point in Tether
- An early point in Overcharge is optional, otherwise, max spirits first.
- Always take your Ult at levels 6, 11, 16.

Good partners for Io are listed in the Dotapedia Entry, but I'll talk about a few more global line-ups that could be good, with balanced teams & lanes.

Yes, I know the Tiny + Io combo is the most common, so I'll try to show some alternatives.

Team Ideas (with Io):

Lifestealer + Io safelane
NP Jungle
Storm Spirit mid
Spiritbreaker solo offlane

With Agh's on Lifestealer (which is weird, but can put another hero in the Infest, and zip around with Storm Spirit, even without Io!)

Sven + Io + Crystal Maiden safelane
Puck mid
Dark Seer solo offlane

Crystal Maiden is on the team for mana regen.  She can also jungle a bit with Frostbite, and stack for Sven.  Dark Seer Synergizes well with Puck's Dream Coil and Sven's Storm Hammer and CM's Blizzard.

Slardar + Io + Ancient Apparition safelane
Pudge mid
Legion Commander solo offlane (or pick Doom, to deny him to the enemy team!)

Legion commander's heal can be cast on Io w/Tether to multiply its effects!
One of Pudge's main problems is lurking around, hoping for a gank opportunity.  What if you could bring him where he's needed for a quick Dismember?  Sven is usually limited by his mobility - but not anymore!  You leave AA in the lane while you go gank, so he can get a good Ice Blast from cross-map.

Positions 1 through 5 - Farming Priority & Laning

Every Dota 2 team line-up can be classified by the priority ranking by which each hero is given some of the available farm (ancients, neutrals, lane creeps) on the map.  These positions also relate to where these heroes get laned, and the roles they play on the team.

Position 1 = highest farming priority, safest farm (hard carry)
Position 2 = 2nd highest farming priority (mid lane carry or mid ganker/semi-carry)
Position 3 = third-core or utility hero (solo offlane)
Position 4 = greedy support or utility hero (roamer or tri-lane pulling)
Position 5 = low-item support, "ward bitch" (lane support for position 1)

Safe vs. Offlane:  Definition

The easiest definition of safelane is:  the lane closest to your team's jungle, either at the top (dire) or bottom (radiant) of the map.

Up to patch 6.85, the radiant offlane was considered to be easier than the dire offlane, because you could side-pull the large camp into the lane.  You used to be able to stack the Dire Ancient camp from the Dire Offlane, for later farming with your offlane hero (such as Tidehunter or Beastmaster), later map changes to the Rosh pit and Dire Ancients made this impossible, and much less convenient for Dire.

In patch 6.86, significant map changes were made, moving neutral camps around and changing pull timings, such that dire and radiant offlanes are a bit more balanced (hopefully).

Lane Setups and Positions

The most typical team-based lane setup is A, or sometimes B.
The most typical pub setup is C, but is becoming more common in pro play.
Pro teams have also run D and E ... but it's not very common, and is done in specific circumstances.

A) Safe Tri-Lane, solo mid, solo offlane (1-1-3)

Position 1, 4, and 5 in safelane.  Position 4 may be jungling.
Position 2 in mid
Position 3 solo offlane (usually against enemy tri-lane)

B) Aggro Tri-Lane, solo mid, solo safelane (3-1-1)

Position 1, 4, and 5 in offlane, against enemy safelane tri or dual lane.
Position 2 in mid
Position 3 in safelane, solo against enemy solo offlaner.

C) Dual Offlane, solo Mid, Dual Safe (2-1-2)

Position 1 & 5 in safelane (against enemy solo offlane or dual lane)
Position 2 in mid
Position 3 and 4 in offlane* (against enemy safe tri-lane or dual lane)
*Pro teams may run Doom + Lich in this setup, in the offlane, or some very aggressive laners, such as Tusk + Undying or Spiritbreaker + Bane.

D) Dual mid, Dual Safelane, solo offlane (1-2-2)

Position 1 & 5 in safelane
Position 2 & 4 in mid lane (e.g. Tiny + Io)
Position 3 in offlane

E) Dual Offlane, Dual Mid, Solo Safe (2-2-1)

Positions 3 and 5 in offlane
Positions 2 & 4 in mid lane
Position 1 in safe lane (solo)

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Positioning Videos

I just found and watched a video by slasher that shows some of the best positioning tips that I've seen in awhile.  He discusses using camera positioning and team-positioning to prevent the enemy from getting good engagements and ultimates.

This is Slasher's "Road to Top 200", focusing on Windranger.  However, the tips he gives are applicable to many engagements.

Positioning and Zone Control, by FiercE:

I like this video more because it talks about some very basic things, that new players don't even think about.  I find the information he shares to be most valuable to support players who are wondering what to do in team fights, and how to stay alive when low on farm.

Teamfight Analysis of Positioning:

A very chaotic teamfight between Na'Vi and C9, broken down to enable you to see why each player on Na'Vi is doing what they are doing.

6.85 Popular Heroes


Pub Tier list on DotaBuff (Article)

Competitive / Pro Tier List (Article)

Discussion / Observations:

There's actually a trend AWAY from heroes with Primary Stuns.  The number of disables that a pro team drafts in general has gone down.  Heroes with longer-range disables are favoured (Gyro missile, Wyvern ult, etc).

"Skillshot" spells are still very popular (Tusk Ice Shards, Lina LSA, SFiend Razes), although different from before (Pudge, Mirana, Earthshaker are less popular)

Trending towards semi-carries as supports, or offlaners as supports (Tusk, Undying, etc).  Emphasis on early-fight heroes and tougher heroes and supports (use of Bounty Hunter, Dazzle, Bane, Ogre, Earthshaker).    Squishy supports are much more rare. Emphasis on roaming supports in the 4-position that can "make plays happen".

Flash-farming carries are much more popular.  Anti-mage is still somewhat popular because of his ability to get ahead in farm once he gets core items.  Carries that can do well throughout the game are favoured (SFiend, Ember, QoP, Alchemist).


A lot of casters are now talking about team line-ups having "sustain".  What's being referred to is the ability of a team to replenish health and mana on an ongoing basis, so the team can keep fighting or pushing.

How to get "sustain"?

Items for Supports:
- Arcane Boots
- Urn
- Mekanism

Items for Carries:
- Hp-regen items (BFury, Bloodstone, etc)
- Lifesteal items (MoM, HoD, Vlad's)
- Early Mekanism (built on mid-heroes such as SFiend, Viper, Dragon Knight)

- At least 1 healer (see List of Healers)
- Pick heroes with low-cooldown ultimates

Why is this important?

In the "fighting meta" of the 6.85 patch, a won team fight can often result in large gains (i.e. some kills and more than 1 tower), if the team has the items and abilities that they need, to avoid returning to base.