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Sven, the Rogue Knight Guide By Hero_Frenzy

Saturday, May 31st, 2008

Author of this guide is Hero_Frenzy

What’s so good about Sven?

Sven is an awesome ganker in Dota Allstars. His Storm Bolt has an 8 second cooldown, so he is a great chaser, which helps during ganks. He also has a huge amount of HP, which allows him to tower dive with ease making him a very good ganker. Not only that, but with rune control and a Bottle he is one of the most feared heroes early game. Not to mention his huge base damage, a storm bolt which is very good to set up Lina or Leshrac which makes him one of the best laners in the game. Also, late game he can be a huge DPS hero with just a few items. He is an all around great hero, from pubs to the highest level of games.

Sven’s Skills

I am just going to comment on each of the skills. Here is a list of Sven’s skills:

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Storm Bolt – This spell is awesome like said before. It helps in ganks, it helps in chasing, it helps in laning, and it has a really short cooldown which allows you to do so much with it.

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Great Cleave – It’s not as good early game because you don’t have enough damage to make this spell worthwhile, but late game it can be a huge use in team fights, especially if you have a Mag/Enigma on your team.

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Toughness Aura – The boost to armor is pretty good for neutraling, helping you survive ganks, and increasing your survivability in team fights, and is by no means a bad skill. It’s best suited for mid-late game when people start doing physical damage.

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God’s Strength – This skill is the defining skill for Sven. It turns ganks around, it wins battles, and it’s very good for neutraling, ganking, and it makes Sven the huge DPS monster that he is.

Skill Setup

Level 1: Storm Bolt
Level 2: Stats
Level 3: Storm Bolt
Level 4: Stats
Level 5: Storm Bolt
Level 6: God’s Strength
Level 7: Storm Bolt
Level 8-10: Stats
Level 11: God’s Strength
Level 12-15: Toughness Aura
Level 16: God’s Strength
Level 17-20: Great Cleave
Level 21-25: Stats

Storm Bolt is maxed early for good lane control/ganks. It’s such an imba skill because of low cooldown, and it gives damage and a disable in one spell. Stats are good until level 10 because it gives you more HP to tank and mana to spam Storm Bolt. God’s Strength maxed first is normal stuff. It allows you to do tons of damage, and helps you gank, damage during team fights, siege towers, and neutral.

Now here’s the dilemma, Toughness or Cleave? The reason I chose Toughness is because until you become a DPS monster, cleave doesn’t really do much damage overall. Yes, it helps a little when farming, but it doesn’t make a big enough difference to get it. And anyway, it couldn’t hurt to get some armor. Just get Cleave levels 17-20 when you start becoming a huge DPS monster. And the obviously finish up with stats.

Pretty cookie cutter build. Nothing special.

Item Build

2x Tango + Circlet + 2x Branches + Clarity

Empty Bottle

Boots of Speed

2x Bracers

Power Treads

Black King Bar

Mask of Madness

TP Scrolls (all throughout)

Before I say anything more, here is the item descriptions if you need them:

This is just a flexible build which applies to most situations. I’ll discuss the different item choices below.

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Bottle – This item is awesome for Sven. It allows him to keep mana for early spamming of Storm Bolt. It allows you to get complete rune control, and it allows you to heal 200 HP and 100 mana over 3 seconds. It’s currently one of the best items in the game right now, and is a perfect choice for Sven.

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Bracers – This item gives him HP to tank, mana for Storm Bolt, and a bit of attack speed. It’s a no brainer item on him. Get it to tank towers and spam more Storm Bolts.

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Power Treads – Treads give you the attack speed you need when you turn on God’s Strength to deal huge amounts of damage. It also helps you when you are neutraling because it gives you more damage.

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Blink King Bar – Yeah, it’s kind of situational, but more often than not, there will be good disables on the other team, stopping you from doing full damage with God’s Strength. BKB nullifies those disables and allows you to deal full damage.

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Mask of Madness – This item allows you to deal a HUGE amount of damage with God’s Strength. The extra damage is pretty much nullified by BKB + the lifesteal when you have God’s Strength on, making this a very good item on Sven.

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TP Scrolls – Besides the first trip, you should never leave base without this item. It’s a pretty no brainer item on all heroes. It allows you to help gank, escape with really low HP, protect towers and raxes during pushes, and sometimes chase if the enemies are running to a tower.

Other Items to Consider

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Boots of Travel – Get this item instead of Treads if you find yourself with a lot of money early game from ganks, and you are going to be the primary carry in your team. It allows you to be in team fights, as well as farm which is a great thing to do if you are Sven.

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Blink Dagger – Some people always get this item on Sven, but I don’t really find it as useful on him. Usually other heroes will have it, allowing you to Stun, instead of you initiating. If you initiate, you get focused and die. Rather, I like to get this item against Blinkers, because it allows you to chase them and kill them, where they would have just Blinked away.

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Satanic – Some people like to go Heart in stead of Satanic on Sven, but I prefer to go Satanic, because when you turn on God’s Strength, you will have tons of damage, add that with the extra lifesteal from Satanic, and you are damn near impossible to kill. Get this item when you aren’t going BKB or MoM

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Assault Cuirass – This item gives you what you need. Attack speed, a -armor aura so your attacks deal more damage, extra armor for added tanking, and attack speed and armor aura for your allies which helps out the team.

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Heart of Tarrasque – Get this item after MoM in the BKB MoM build because you can’t go Satanic, as the Lifesteal doesn’t stack. It gives you extra damage and HP for tanking and doing damage.

Gameplay Walkthrough

First off is choosing a lane. You can solo, but you would rather not because you will simply get raped by the usual solo heroes (SF, Viper, Zeus, etc.), so pick a dual lane. Because you are melee, it’s good to lane with a ranged hero so they can harass, allowing you to go for the kill. The best heroes to lane with Sven are Lina or Leshrac, because their Stun, Stun, Nuke combo along with their harassing ability owns a lane. However, other heroes that lane well with Sven are Zeus, Viper, QoP, PotM, and THD. He also works well in any lane.

Early game you just want to last hit, to get your Bottle ASAP. Try to avoid as much harassment as possible. Just last hit and let your ally harass. If there is a good opportunity to kill someone, take it, but make sure you don’t waste your mana, because you have so little of it, and a double stun combination is huge with Sven.

Once you get your Bottle, start checking runes at every 2 minutes and ganking a lot. To do this, just check for rune, and regardless of whether or not you get the rune, try and gank the other lanes. Rune control is very important because it allows you to get the extra surprise or damage with him, and it allows you to heal, as well as denying the mid solo the ability to restore his HP and mana. Continue this process until mid game.

Once it’s mid game, just farm. You need to farm mid game or you will be useless late game. I have made the error of not farming enough mid game before, and it’s screwed me over many times, because I am not farmed enough lategame to abuse Sven’s imba DPS power. Yes, participate in pushes, and defending, but no more. Your allies should be able to handle it especially because you ganked every lane and got most of the runes. Remember to pay attention to the map to avoid ganks. Ganks will completely screw you over.

During lategame, go around with your team. Take part in ganks, team fights, defending towers, and team pushes. You should have enough farm by this time to be a huge threat to the enemy team. Remember to abuse your items to their full potential, and use your stuns effectively.

Yeah, I know this walkthrough is short, but Sven is such a simple hero. There’s only special techniques with him you need to know, and you can find this in the next section.

Techniques to a Better Sven

Stun with Backup – This technique isn’t hard to do, but there aren’t going to be many situations when you can do this, unless your opponent has no idea what he is doing. Basically what it is is when creeps are attacking your opponent between waves, stun them. The creeps will then damage him, along with yourself and your stun damage. If your ally has a stun as well, this can result in a quick first blood.

Backstabbing – A simple technique used with Storm Bolt. Basically, you run behind your opponent with the use of trees, allowing you to be right in front of him when you stun, allowing you to stun twice, and get in around 5 hits if not more. And it allows you to combo much easier with your lane partner.

Running and Stunning (Or Not) – You always want to be up as close to the enemy as possible, so usually you want to run up, then stun so you can get the most hits as possible. You usually want to do this, because if you don’t, you usually won’t get the kill anyway. Remember, you can run up, and not stun, to keep the enemy away from creeps, but only do that if you are against a solo, because if it’s a dual lane, they will just combo you to death.

Stun Block – Sometimes when you are chasing, if you are already really close to the enemy, you can stun, then block their pathing when they run, which allows you to get extra hits in, and slows the enemy so your ally can maybe land an AoE stun. This is a pretty difficult trick to master, but it’s devastating, especially when paired with God’s Strength.

God’s Strength Farming – Remember, you can use God’s Strength to farm neutrals. It allows you to neutral much quicker, especially when facing Golems, high level Saytrs, high level Furbolgs, and most importantly, Ancients. Just make sure you won’t need it by the cooldown time, because you always want to be able to have God’s Strength when you need it.

God’s Strength Blink – Remember you can use God’s Strength, then blink into the fight if you have it. It allows you to use more of the amount of time you have for God’s Strength, because every second of God’s Strength is important, because every hit that you do with God’s Strength does so much damage, and you should make full use of it.

Blink Stun – Basically, if you have Blink Dagger, and someone is going to get away, use Blink and Stun to catch them, and kill them. Not a tricky task, but can get you lots of kills, and stop people from getting away. Also helps when intiating ganks because they will not see you coming. Can also help stop TP’s and channeling spells.

Strategies to Make the Best of Your Hero

Laning – Laning with Sven is pretty simple. Just try to farm without getting harassed, and try to get your ally to harass. If you can kill the enemy, stun him, and allow your ally to combo with you, getting you the kill. Use some of the tactics stated above to make the most out of your lane. If the lane gets really tough, and you can’t farm in it, try and creep pull. If you are on sentinel bottom, pull that camp at X:15/45, where you attack it once, then rune down to your lane. It will bring your creeps over to the neutral camp, allowing you to farm it without taking any damage. If you have a tango, you can even pull the second camp for more money and experience without taking much damage. If you are on scourge middle, just attack the creeps at X:11/41 and your creeps will come to help you fight the gnolls. Immediately run up to the camp next to the one you are at and pull that to your creeps, getting you a good amount of gold in around 20 seconds.

Ganking – Basically, you want to get every time there’s a rune coming up. Leave your lane at around :50 if you have Bottle, and get try to get the rune. Regardless of whether you do or not, try and gank. When you gank, you always want to use the Backstabbing tactic if possible, because it allows you to have a higher chance of catching the enemy, and a higher chance of you getting the kill. Basically, the ideal gank is to come in with shadows from behind to stun the enemy, and have your ally run up and cast his spells, you stun again, and you both hit to finish him off. Don’t be afraid to gank from behind as well, because the element of surprise can prevent him from making a quick reaction.

Farming – If you are in a lane that’s back, you want to keep it back, so the enemy can’t farm, yet farm the lane. To do this, you should deny your creeps when they are at half health, and just last hit the enemy creeps. Also, when you neutral, be sure to make full use of the time. Remember, you can use God’s Strength to help you neutral. Also, one main thing to notice when you are neutraling is the time. If it’s X:53, then pull the camp away from the original location. This allows you to farm two times the amount of creeps you could have in the same amount of time.

Team Fights – Basically in team fights you are the DPS hero. You want to focus the low HP spellcaster. If you have BKB turn it on, and turn on God’s Strength and destroy their heroes. Try to use your items to your advantage. For example, use Blink to stop people from running, and use MoM to completely destroy your enemies once you have BKB. Never focus the tank. I know this is common knowledge, but people still tend to do this anyway. Go for the casters first, then the DPS hero, then the tank last. Team fights with Sven are pretty simple, but you just have to focus the right people.


PieMonger: His guide to shortening guides helped me a lot for guidewriting
Beast_Pete and disrup3: For making their layout which helped me make mine
Super_Chode: For his layout to his Sylla guide

Crixalis, The Sand King Guide By DamnNoHtml

Saturday, May 31st, 2008

This guide provided by DamnNoHtml

Table of Contents
a.)Skills / Abilities
-Early Game
-Mid Game
-Late Game
d.)Burrowstriking Perfectly
e.)Enemy Heroes
f.)Other Notes

The Sand King’s Abilities

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The Sand King burrows into the ground, tunnels forward impaling everything above him, then surfaces.
Level 1 – 100 damage, 400 maximum range.
Level 2 – 160 damage, 500 maximum range.
Level 3 – 220 damage, 600 maximum range.
Level 4 – 280 damage, 700 maximum range.

Notes :: One of my favorite spells. Allows you to not only stun and deal decent damage to a fairly wide area of effect, but allows you to jump into a combat situation or teleport up a hill for an escape / kill. I will get into using Burrowstrike perfectly later.

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Sand Storm
The Sand King creates a fearsome Sand Storm. The storm blinds his enemies and he becomes invisible to them. The storm also causes his opponents to take damage.

Level 1 – 20 damage per second, lasts 20 seconds, 0.3 second delay before visible.
Level 2 – 40 damage per second, lasts 40 seconds, 0.6 second delay before visible.
Level 3 – 60 damage per second, lasts 60 seconds, 0.9 second delay before visible.
Level 4 – 80 damage per second, lasts 80 seconds, 1.2 second delay before visible.

Notes :: Great for farming if you do this build, great for escaping death. I don’t use this ability too much.

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Caustic Finale
Each of the Sand King’s attack injects a deadly venom that causes the target to explode violently on death, dealing damage in an area.

Level 1 – 90 damage.
Level 2 – 130 damage.
Level 3 – 170 damage.
Level 4 – 220 damage.

Notes :: One of the best farming skills in the game. Nuff’ said.

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Sends a disturbance into the earth, causing it to shudder violently. All caught within range will take damage and slowed. The closer to the epicenter, the more damage taken.

Level 1 – 2.0 second casting time, 6 pulses of 110 damage.
Level 2 – 2.0 second casting time, 8 pulses of 110 damage.
Level 3 – 2.0 second casting time, 10 pulses of 110 damage.

Notes :: One of the key spells in any mass push / defense in any CAL game, or hell, any game of any kind for that matter. Good for solo kills, good for double kills, good to ward away, good to stop pushes, good for everything.

[Skill Build]

  1. Burrowstrike ——————-> ? : Stun Level 1 Always good
  2. Attribute Bonus / *Caustic Finale —————-> ? : Mana to Spam, Health to stay
  3. Burrowstrike
  4. Attribute Bonus / *Sand Storm
  5. Burrowstrike
  6. Epicenter
  7. Burrowstrike
  8. Attribute Bonus
  9. Attribute Bonus
  10. Attribute Bonus
  11. Epicenter
  12. Attribute Bonus / *Caustic Finale
  13. Attribute Bonus / *Caustic Finale
  14. Sand Storm ——————-> ? : 1 Point to Avoid Death in many circumstances
  15. Caustic Finale —————–> ? : Eventually get this to easen farming even more.
  16. Epicenter
  17. Caustic Finale
  18. Caustic Finale
  19. Caustic Finale
  20. Attribute Bonus
  21. Attribute Bonus
  22. Attribute Bonus
  23. Sand Storm
  24. Sand Storm
  25. Sand Storm

Note: Sometimes if you are alone with a melee enemy hero, getting Caustic instead of stats earlier can be more effective.

*: Sometimes it is better to get the ability proceeding the “*” first as they could better your situation.
EX: If you have a Level 6 Lycan in Wolf Form, you’re gonna most likley want a Sand Storm to make his ultimate useless. Or, if you are versing a melee hero alone in a lane, 90 damage per every creep is alot of harassment with Caustic.

It depends what you want – I have tried both methods, they work equally as effective in the right situation.

Item Build :
[Starting Items]

  • Gauntlets of Strength ——————————– Early HP Boost
  • Circlet of Nobility ————————————- Early HP + MP Boost
  • Flask of Sapphire Water —————————– Saves a trip to the Well
  • Clarity Potion —————————————– Saves a trip to the Well
  • Ironwood Branch
    [First Trip To Well - Should have at least 1000]
  • Bracer Scroll ——————————– Complete the earlier two
  • Circlet of Nobility ————————————- Early HP + MP Boost
  • Gauntlets of Strength —————————– Early HP Boost
  • Bracer Scroll —————————————– Complete the earlier two
  • Boots of Speed —————————————– (Duh)
  • Flask of Sapphire Water —————————————– In case you don’t have your first one.
    [Second Trip To Well]
  • Kelen’s Dagger of Escape —————————————– Completely vital
  • Filler Bracers —————————————– Always nice to have + stats.[Later Game] Defense Build
  • Aegis of the Immortal (Plate Mail + Stout Shield + Planeswalkers Cloak + Recipe)
  • Heart of Tarrasque
  • Heart of Tarrasque[Later Game] Offense Build
  • Monkey King Bar (Demon Edge + Quarterstaff + Recipe)
  • Heart of Tarrasque
  • Heart of Tarrasque


Heart : I actually underestimated this item when I first posted my SK guide. Heart is a very good item on SK, both defensive and offensive. It adds roughly 1000 HP and 35 damage, not to mention 11 HP / Sec regen. Combined with Aegis and perhaps another heart, it would take the Fire Well 11 seconds to kill you. Pretty damn nice Tank. It allows you to run in with Epicenter and STILL be targetted but live.

What about BKB? : Yeah, BKB makes sense right? Burrowstrike in, channel Epicenter, turn on BKB, and they can’t stop the channeling of the spell. Frankly I don’t like BKB too much. My reasons for this are that I get enough HP later with Heart, and if you have a Blink Dagger Epicenter will already be going off so there is no need to stop it. Plus, with BKB, if you Burrowstrike in and Epicenter, people will scatter and you will have less of an effect. With just Blink Dagger, they could be all together and not have time to react.

Only list a few items? : Yeah, late game you really can go whatever you want, there really is no bad item for the Sand King, with a few obvious exceptions (Scepter, Orb Effects). I only listed what I usually go, but I change alot so don’t go by it like its a bible.

Early Game

Start off by going to the lane of your choice. The good thing about Sand King is he is an excellent solo hero, yet an excellent dual-lane assistant as well. So, it doesn’t matter if you solo or not. Start off in the lane being very, very passive. Hold ALT and walk around with Crixalis until you see a creep with a small fraction of health remaining. As you see the creep start to lose all of its health, immidiately right click it, and go back to your walking around quickly. (To prevent auto attacking on creeps). This is a very common farming method and works amazingly well in the long run – though hard to master.

Sometimes at early levels you can bait yourself by rambo right-clicking the enemy hero (Don’t do this if you know it will be dumb AKA into Crystal Maiden and CK.) Get him to about 50% health (You should be probably around 25% health). Make him think he can kill you, and then use the power of your creeps to kill him instead. (View Image)

Dota Allstars Creeps
Dota Allstars Screenshot of the game

Once you hit Level 3 you can begin doing some damage, but don’t look for any kills yet. (Unless there is an allied stunner in your lane.) If you notice an enemy hero being attacked by at least 2 creeps, Burrowstrike him and attack him 2 times. The combination of your stun, your 2 attacks, and the 2 creeps attacking him add up to around 280-340 health taken away. Continue farming and being passive (Unless a stun opportunity occurs.

Level 5 is a pretty big level because Burrowstrike is now quite manueverable. You can start to strike up hills, down cliffs etc and the range is pretty long. Burrowstrike has more AoE than the actual spike effect shown.*
*As of 6.27b

Level 6 – Yay. Now you can easily, easily get double kills. There is an art to Burrowstrike – You need to think what the person you burrowstriked is going to do when they see the green glow come from your tail.

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Try and think what your enemies will think.

Level 7-10 – Just farm, get a kill if you can. Work on that Blink Dagger money until you get it. Boring, yes. If an ambush comes, be prepared.

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…Seconds Later…

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And finally…

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Level 11-14 – Hopefully you have a Blink Dagger by now, and if you do, then now you must learn the art of Blink Strike + Epicenter. Look at these images and then I will explain further.

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After the blink with Epicenter “on” :

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There isn’t really an “art” of Burrowstrike + Epicenter, as it isn’t rocket science. Yet, it is one of the most effective “moves” in DotA. It usually never fails. First, find a spot that is in the fog of war or out of sight of enemy heroes. Be at most 900 units away from the enemies. Begin channeling Epicenter, and after the green light goes away and you start pulsing (You may miss 1 or 2 pulses if you are a begginner, it’s ok) immediately blink into the center of the enemy Heroes. After your pulses are up, Burrowstrike the remainders (if there are any) to sweep easy double kills.

A common misconception is when you Blink in with Epicenter “on” you should immediately Burrowstrike the enemies – This is false. If you do this, the time the enemy heroes spend in the air for Burrowstrike, they enemies are invulnerable, which means, no Epicenter damage. Wait untl all pulses are clear OR you can get a kill with a Burrowstrike.

Some people like to Channel Epicenter and then Shift-click Blink dagger so they wont miss a pulse – I do not like this as the target you want to blink to 2 seconds ago may change in the 2 seconds of channeling.

Later Levels – There is not much more that is new to the Sand King after Level 14. Sand Storm should be used for dire situations and you need to stall for allied heroes to rescue. There is a specific way you should farm with Caustic Finale. When you see a full creep wave, Burrowstrike every single unit. Immediately attack the necromancer of the wave, and then attack 1-2 ghouls. If you did this correctly, with Level 4 Caustic Finale, you should have killed the whole creep wave in a matter of seconds.

The Sand King is great for pushes – Do the Blink + Epicenter combo and it will totally screw up a team. Other than that, everything else just comes from practice. That is of course, once you can master the art of…

Mastering Burrowstrike

Burrowstrike is an incredibly versatile skill as you can transport to whatever location you want. It is especially useful for escaping by Burrowstriking up a hill.

Basics :There are times when you should and should not click a unit to Burrowstrike it. An example of when it is actually OK to click a unit is when you are both farming in the same lane. The good thing about clicking the unit is it will detect if he is in range, and if he leaves the range you won’t burrowstrike, which can be useful. DO NOT EVER click a unit if you are CHASING it, as you will always Burrowstrike behind the unit. You need to aim a bit ahead in the direction of the runner.

Let the Blue Ball represent the Sand King and the Red Ball Represent an enemy Hero who is fleeing. In this situation, you have to click ahead of the unit, at the green X, or you will Burrowstrike not far enough. This spell is NOT like Impale, where you can target it and it (usually) can’t miss.
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Burrowstriking up a hill : To Successfully strike up a hill, you must be relatively close to the edge of the cliff you want to go up / come down. Click as close as possible away from you, but enough to be on the other side. If you click too far, the Sand King will try to run around the hard way and not strike up the cliff, which, will make you screwed very often.

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Dota Allstars Crixalis the Sand King guide

Timing : Timing is essential with Burrowstrike since it is NOT a targetted spell like Impale. Estimate the speed of your target and their direction and time accordingly. This comes with practice. But once you master it, come on, how badass is it Burrowstriking down a cliff for a kill?

Burrowstrike / Epicenter :
This is the most famous combo of the Sand King. Burrowstrike a unit (or more than one) and then immidiately channel Epicenter, so that when the enemy is unstunned, they will be caught in the Epicenter. There are many ways you can totally screw up B/E combo. Here are some tips to prevent that from happening.

————- Disablers :
Disablers suck when it comes to Burrowstrike / Epicenter. If you Burrowstrike, say, Crystal Maiden, there is enough time for her as she is unstunned to Frostbite you and kill the Epicenter. Not only that, she might use Freezing Field and kill you. Unless their main disable is on cooldown, do not attempt to Burrowstrike Epicenter caster / disablers.

————- Late Game Strength Heroes :
Obviously if a Hero has 2400 HP, Epicenters roughly 1,000 damage at Level 16 wont do jack shit. Never try to just kill a Lone Centaur with it. Save it for a push when it will at least do some damage. Don’t get me wrong though, an early game 1000 HP centaur can be killed pretty easily provided you avoid his stun.

————- Blinkers / Heroes with Blink Dagger :
If you ever Burrowstrike and attempt to Epicenter an Antimage, I hate you. He will just blink away easily and you will look pretty dumb :-p. Exceptions are if you TOO have a Blink Dagger – You can see where they Blink and just blink right with them, always a funny situation. Also if the hero can blink w/o a dagger, having a teammate disable or silence him works.

————- “Hot Spots” :
I like to call certain areas of the map “Hot Spots.” Why? Because the Sand King can use Burrowstrike to go to this area and be completely safe from harm for as long as he would like. If you go to a Hot Spot, it is an area that the enemy cannot have a line of sight to, and that only Burrowstrike can be casted to. You can transport ANYWHERE within the range with Burrowstrike.
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Other Notes

-None : This is my first Guide and the First version of this one.

Good luck.


- Can you channel Epicenter and then Burrowstrike to an area, taking the Epicenter with you?

Though slightly less effective, yes, this does work, and is a good substitue if it is needed.

Aiushtha, The Enchantress Guide By Tucker

Friday, May 30th, 2008

This guide provided by Tucker

Dota Allstars Aiushtha, the Enchantress Art
All Credit to Dozzy for this Art.

Written by Tucker, Updated for 6.46b. Best Viewed on Dota Allstars Skin.

“I’ll attract the enemy with my human call! I’m so wasted!! I’m so waasstteed!!!!!!!”


Hello everyone, my name is Tucker. This is my first guide so please bear with me. I have decided to write a guide to my 2nd favourite hero, Enchantress. In my guide I have put my many experiences with Enchantress to good use, trying to inform the reader of every aspect on how to play her to her full potential. I have noticed a distinct lack of guides for Enchantress on these forums, which saddens me as she is somewhat overlooked by many players.

Enchantress is a very versatile hero who can play a hardcore support role or even carry her team to victory and has seen quite a lot of league play in recent times. I try to cater for all levels of play from Pubs and TDA games right through to IH and more serious games. I offer several item paths for different situations, along with strategy to deal with those situations, as well as covering the art of using Impetus and using Enchant to its full potential. I hope you enjoy reading it as much as I did writing it!

Table of Contents

  1. Hero Overview
  2. Skill Description
  3. Skill Build
  4. Item Builds
    • Core Item Build
    • Recommended Item paths after core items
    • Other Optional Items
  5. Items Not Recommended
  6. General Game play Walkthrough
    • Early game: (Levels 1-10)
    • Mid game: (Levels 10-16)
    • Late game: (Levels 17-25)
  7. Good Allies to Have
  8. Bad Enemies to Face
  9. Mini-Guide to Using Impetus
    • Harassing
    • Chasing
    • Animation Canceling
  10. Using Enchant to it’s Full Potential
    • Neutral Creeps for Ganking
    • Neutral Creeps for Pushing
    • Image Heroes
    • Turning the Tide of Battle by Stealing Summons
  11. Replays
  12. Conclusion
  13. Credits
  14. Q&A

1. Hero Overview
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Although all Dryads are Cenarius’ daughters, Aiushtha is said to be his first and favorite. Because of her direct relation to him, she has borrowed much of his powers. This is demonstrated by her control over the shy Wisps which she uses to heal her allies, and her ability to bring an opponent under the will of the Sentinel. Preferring ranged combat to melee, she fashioned a spear that strikes with more force the further her target is away. Her agility is unmatched, and any opponent attempting to kill her will find she skips ahead of them with surprising ease.
Starting HP: 454
Starting Mana: 208
Attack Range: 550
Base Move Speed: 295
Starting Base Damage: 37-47
Starting Armor: 1.7

Strength: 16 +2.0
Agility: 19 +1.8
Intelligence: 16 +2.8
Overall stat gain per level: +6.6

Advanced Data

Acquisition Range: 800
Cast Point: 0.30
Cast Backswing: 0.51
Damage Point: 0.30
Attack Backswing: 0.70
Projectile speed: 900
Base Attack Time: 1.7
Starting Attack Cool down: 1.43

Pros and Cons


  • Versatile role in her team.
  • Armor ignoring arrow ability.
  • Fantastic lane controlling ability.
  • Incredible lane staying power.
  • High overall stat gain per level.


  • Susceptible to nukers.
  • Quite a weak ultimate.
  • Below average base move speed.
2. Skill Descriptions


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Gives strength to the Enchantress’ attacks, causing them to deal greater damage the further away the target is.

Level 1 – Deals 4% of the distance in damage.
Level 2 – Deals 8% of the distance in damage.
Level 3 – Deals 12% of the distance in damage.
Level 4 – Deals 16% of the distance in damage.

Cooldown: 6/5/4/0

This is Enchantress’ bread and butter arrow ability. It deals damage on impact based on the distance between Enchantress and her target. This skill is fantastic to harass early game and boosts your dps late game. It also synergizes fantastically with her own slow as well as any other allied slow on fleeing heroes. Impetus damage ignores armor, making it scale well in terms of damage in late part of the game. A downside to this spell is that it is somewhere ineffective against melee heroes in later stages of the game, as they require close combat to damage you, thus losing your distance damage bonus.


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Brings target unit under control of Aiushtha. If the unit cannot be converted, it will instead be slowed instead.

Level 1 – 30 second cooldown, 10% slow if unit cannot be converted.
Level 2 – 25 second cooldown, 20% slow if unit cannot be converted.
Level 3 – 20 second cooldown, 30% slow if unit cannot be converted.
Level 4 – 15 second cooldown, 40% slow if unit cannot be converted.

Enchant is a great spell. On one hand it is a fantastic slow among slow of Dota Allstars, (7 seconds PHWOARH!) and on the other hand it has the ability to dominate a creep for 2 minutes on all levels. With a low cooldown of 15 seconds on level four, you can mass a nice army of creeps for pushing a tower, slowing pushes by stealing their creeps, using it for stompers or you can ignore that part of the spell and just use it as a slow. The only downside to this spell compared to some other slows is that it is a single targeted spell.

Nature’s Attendants

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Releases a swarm of wisps to heal nearby allies in a 300 radius. Each wisp lasts 10 seconds and heals 10hp/sec.

Level 1 – 3 Wisps.
Level 2 – 5 Wisps.
Level 3 – 7 Wisps.
Level 4 – 9 Wisps.

Cooldown: 45 seconds

Healing wisps is another great spell. It makes enchantress a frustrating lane opponent in Dota Allstars to deal with. Not only can she harass you greatly with Impetus, but any attempts at harassing her are futile as she can just heal them off in a matter of seconds. Mid to late game it does not lose its effectiveness, giving a 300 AoE heal of 900hp which can turn the tide of anything from a 1v1 fight to a huge team battle. One downside to this spell is that it’s not an instant heal, meaning it’s useless against chain nukes.

The mechanics of the spell are as follows. Taken and modified from Gradenko’s mechanical explanation.

Nature’s Attendants summons 3/5/7/9 Wisps per level, which last 10 seconds at all levels. Each Wisp selects a random target within 300 AoE and heals it once for 10 HP, then selects a new target for the next second. That works out to 300/500/700/900 HP healed over the 10 seconds in the 300 AoE. The heal is triggered, so as far as I know the graphic is just there for graphics.


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Whenever the Enchantress is attacked, she beguiles the unit into slowing its attack.

Level 1 – 50% reduction.
Level 2 – 70% reduction.
Level 3 – 90% reduction.


I have somewhat mixed feelings about Untouchable. As an ultimate it can be considered somewhat weak. It slows hero’s IAS by that stated amount. However this does NOT change their Base Attack Time. This means their attack speed can’t be slowed past -0.80 in total. IAS decrease comes from items such as Hand of Midas, Agility (base and otherwise) and any hero skills, such as Rampage, Bloodlust or Rabid. It has no effect against manually cast arrow abilities and once your enemies get some decent agility and attack speed items the reduction is minimal at best. It is however very effective against creeps, Roshan, Infernals and other summons. I still use it in my builds as even though the actual attack speed reduced isn’t that great, it can still be lifesaving in some situations.

If you still don’t understand how it works, just think of it as the reverse effect of Frenzy or strafe!

3. Skill Build

1. Impetus
2. Nature’s Attendants
3. Impetus
4. Nature’s Attendants
5. Impetus
6. Nature’s Attendants
7. Impetus
8. Nature’s Attendants
9. Untouchable
10. Enchant / Stats
11. Enchant / Stats
12. Enchant / Stats
13. Enchant / Stats
14. Stats
15. Untouchable
16. Untouchable
17. Stats / Enchant
18. Stats / Enchant
19. Stats / Enchant
20. Stats / Enchant
21-25. Stats

Explanation for Skill Build.

Why max Impetus first?

Maxing Impetus first in this build is a no brainer. It’s your harassing arrow ability. It allows you to dominate most lane matchups, and possibly score an early kill. By level 7 the cooldown is 0, so you are able to “Orbwalk” from there.

Why max Nature’s Attendants so quickly?

Nature’s attendants is your heal. At level four it heals 900 hp over 10 seconds in 300 AoE. It helps you stay in your lane for longer amounts of time and allows you to tank some damage (Read: I can tank most ultimates and combos in the game with this skill, live, attack back and probably win!) while attacking back or fleeing.

When should I take Enchant?

This skill build gives you a choice at when you want to take Enchant.

If you are playing a ganking role, which is Enchantress’ main strength during mid game, taking Enchant at levels 10-14 is the best option. Giving you a 7 second slow to go ganking with allows you to cut down most heroes in a matter of seconds, made twice as easy with BoT.

If your team needs you to be the late gamer and you have other ganking oriented heroes on your side, your main aim early-mid game should be farming and staying alive while calling ganks on your own lane for kills. By the time you reach level 17 when you are close to finishing the items you need, Enchant can be taken for use in ganks and team pushes.

Why not take Untouchable at 6&11?

This skill does little to improve your early game survivability against nukers or manually cast arrow abilities this is why you shouldn’t take it at level 6. It is taken at levels 9/15/16 and not 11, as the leveling of the skill between 1 & 2 is not great, an extra -20% IAS for a level of an ultimate is poor IMO. Around level 9 in the game you can start expecting some “normal attack fire” to hurt when used in conjunction with nukes and disables. You can also use it to pull a creep wave off a tower and take minimal damage or tank some Neutral creeps. The actual attack speed reduction is only from items, agility or hero skills, so you can’t slow a hero’s attack speed past their base attack time.

Could I take some early Stats instead of Nature’s Attendants?

Definitely. If you are laning heroes such as Viper or Visage, their damage comes from orb-walking, which your heal is more beneficial to heal out their harassing. However if you are laning some strong chain nukers, such as Lina, Tinker or even a Lion, early stats would prove to be beneficial in staying alive than leveling your heal to it’s max. I would still recommend two levels of Nature’s Attendants so you can heal, then taking some stats while still maxing Impetus.

4. Item Build(s)
Core Item Build:
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Item order

1. Consumables: Tangos, clarities. However many you feel you will need. Also a few GGbranches (0-500)
2. Boots of speed (500)
3. Three or Four Null Talisman (1455-1940)****
4. Boots of Travel recipe (2200)
5. Void Stone (900) (Can be taken earlier if you really struggle to manage your mana)
6. Staff of Wizardry (1000)
7. Robe of the Magi (450)
8. Eul’s Scepter of Divinity Recipe Scroll (450)

Total Cost: 7500 gold


I’ll leave the early consumables and survival items up to your own play style and choices. These items include Pots, Tangos, RoR, Clarities, Circlets and GGbranches. Everyone has their own style and preferences about these items. Get Boots of Speed as soon as possible, as they are beneficial to escape early ganks and to harass with Impetus early game.

Three or Four Nulls should be taken as soon as possible. In most situations you wont need the extra HP from bracers, as long as you can get off heal off in time then you will most likely survive through chain nukes and chases. Enchantress’s base damage is fairly low. She can harass the enemy with Impetus, but in terms of last hitting, Enchantress pales in comparison to most other good soloers. Even if you have plenty of mana regeneration, it won’t help in releasing multiple Impetus in a row while trying to orb-walk someone. What you need is a pure mana boost. Three or four Nulls gives 18-24 damage, around 300 mana as well as some hp and agility, which is easily the most cost effective items for the benefits they give. And in 6.46b Nulls recipe cost was reduced which made them even better value for money!

The early BoT isn’t for the teleports(although that is a bonus), it’s for the MS. Having 385 MS to Impetus(orb)-walk against most other heroes (335-370 with just boots) when Impetus is at it’s peak (after level 7 through to mid game) is the most beneficial offensive item you can get.

(Treads are an option now since Aegis was removed, you no longer have the need to suicide push + teleport to push again. The extra IAS is nice, they’re cheap and it’s a n easy way to boost Enchantress’ IAS early.)

The major item in this core build is Eul’s Scepter. It’s taken after BoT as it will not help you net kills nearly as much as BoT will. It helps out further with your mana regen requirements as well as a another decent damage boost. The 6 cyclone charges can be used to set up ganks, escape ganks or make early team fights 5v4 for an amount of time. The charges have many uses, but remember you only have six of them, so use them wisely.

**** If you’re facing a tough opponent, either a significantly better skilled player or Heroes such as Viper and Tinker, Bracers can be taken for the extra survivability. Otherwise, Nulls are the better choice.

Recommended Item paths after core items:
The Guinsoo/Heart Path
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9. Quarterstaff (1150)
10. Robe of the Magi (450)
11. Sobi Mask (325)
12. Guinsoo’s Scythe of Vyse Recipe (450)
13. Vitality Booster (1100)
14. Messerschmidt’s Reaver (3200)
15. Heart of Tarrasque Recipe Scroll (1200)

Total cost: 15,375 gold


This build is for a Later game Tanking and Damage Enchantress. It covers everything you need to fulfill this. You’ll have the mana regen from your core build, you’ll have a great damage output and you’ll have great survivability from Heart of Tarrasque.

Upgrading your Eul’s to Guinsoo’s Scythe is a logical step once you’ve used up all your cyclones. Guinsoo’s gives another nice damage boost as well and another 3 second disable with a low cooldown, on top of your slow. Heart is a given no matter if you get Radiance, Guinsoo or Necronomicon. Later game with Heart/Untouchable/NA you are probably one of the best pseudo-tanks in the game.

The Necronomicon/Guinsoo Path
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Note; In this build, Ignore the core build above and rush Necronomicon as the following order suggests:

1. Consumables: Tangos, clarities. However many you feel you will need. Also a few GGbranches (0-500)
2. Boots of speed (500)
3. Staff of Wizardry (1000)
4. Belt of Giant Strength (450)
5. Necronomicon Recipe (1300)
6. Necronomicon 2 Recipe (1300)
7. Necronomicon 3 Recipe (1300)
8. Boots of Travel recipe (2200)
9. Void Stone (900)
10. Staff of Wizardry (1000)
11. Robe of the Magi (450)
12. Eul’s Scepter of Divinity Recipe Scroll (450)
13. Quarterstaff (1150)
14. Robe of the Magi (450)
15. Sobi Mask (325)
16. Guinsoo’s Scythe of Vyse Recipe (450)

Total cost: 13,725 gold


This build is for those situations when your team already has a carry hero, a good tank and is in need of disables and damage or you’re facing invisible/wind walk heroes.

The items you get in this build will not only help your team in large team fights, it will still allow you to deal a decent amount of damage and have good survivability. If your building Necronomicon because your opposing team has invisible or WW heroes such as Bone Clinks or Stealth Assassin then I would recommend getting this before Eul’s and possibly before BoT, as the true sight from level 3 necrowarriors will help immensely. This item synergizes well with your 7 second slow, allowing the warriors to get off a lot of manaburning attacks, as well as a 225 mana burn/nuke. The movespeed aura also helps chasing or escaping. You will also gain some nice stats with level 3 Necro adding to your survivability and mana pool.

Finally after you’ve used all your cyclone charges you can upgrade your Eul’s Scepter into Guinsoo’s Scythe, adding a nice damage boost, a 3 second disable with a low cooldown and even more mana regeneration.

Other Optional Items
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Hood of Defiance (2350)

A new item in 6.42 where Aegis has now been removed. This item is a great, cheap alternative for magic resistance. Since chain nukers are your greatest enemy for most of the game, this item will help you immensely. If you’re having trouble early / mid game against casters I would recommend getting it after you complete your Boots of Travel, if you’re surviving well enough then I would recommend getting it after Heart. If you’re not against casters and nukers, then don’t get this item.

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Radiance (5325)

Radiance is a good damage item, if you ARE the team’s lategame hero. If you are in a team of general sentinel picks at the moment, there IS a high chance of that happening. (THD/BM/VS/Lina/CM/Enigma/Zues/Chen etc) The team needs a hero with lategame capability in that situation and you could do worse than Enchanty. Radiance would be my damage item of choice over MKB/Buriza etc, as Immolation is fantastic and you get a small evasion which can be helpful, it also doesn’t have any effects which impede Impetus, which is the main reason.

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Linken’s Sphere (5500)

Some people like to get Linken’s sphere for the spell block, stats and regen. I personally would prefer heart, but Linken’s certainly isn’t a bad item. Spell block can save you from death on some occasions!

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The Butterfly (6350)

The Butterfly is another situational item. I would class this as a luxury item to be gotten after your core build and item paths. It gives nice IAS boost and the extra evasion will help against heroes who rely on physical attacks and/or any hero with a bash ability.

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Hyperstone (2350)

The most cost effective way to boost your IAS. Good for increasing your DPS after you’ve completed all your damage and survival items.

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Assault Cuirass (6320)

Another new item that you might think to try with Enchant since it’s implementation. The armour bonus’ are nice and the attack speed is very useful. It’s one of those items that you only get 1 per team and if you have the time and spare cash and no one else on your team has one, then definitely consider it.

5. Items not recommended:

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Eye of Skadi

Eye of Skadi will be somewhat controversial as many people like it on Enchant for some reason. I would only ever suggest getting it when your team DESPERATELY needs another slow. It is overridden by auto-cast Impetus, but manually casting Impetus on alternate attacks can still make the slow work. It adds nice stats but really, there are better stat items for cheaper and better items for Enchantress.

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Maelstrom / Mjollnir

These items are agility based so your gain from them will be minimal. The orb effect also overrides Impetus when it procs. Best left for heroes like troll.

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This item is pretty bad all round for Enchantress. It does give some decent str and agil but the price makes it not worth it and it doesn’t give you any damage to speak of. The orb effect is also pretty useless at 10% chance and it overrides Impetus when it occurs. The MS and IAS increase is minimal.

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Stygian Desolator

Deso is a pretty good item for its Gold-per-damage, however Impetus overrides the orb effect on Manual and auto-cast. This means you will either be wasting the orb or wasting your Impetus, which isn’t what you want to do!

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Monkey King Bar

Some people prefer MKB as a primary damage item. While this is fine and I can see their arguments as to why they like MKB with the attack speed and damage etc, I would personally never recommend this as the mini-stun overrides Impetus when it procs, which means you lose out of 30% of your Impetus! Definately not something you want.

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Manta Style

Manta Style may seem like something you want to try on Enchantress but I will tell you why you shouldn’t. Impetus overrides the mana burn effect so you are wasting money on an orb your not using. Once you use your images, if you have Impetus on auto-cast only the real Enchantress will use Impetus and the other two wont, thus giving away your position a lot easier than normal.

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Some people go by the mentality that they should buy dagon on any intel hero. Since Enchantress is an INT hero I should buy a dagon right?? WRONG! Dagon is a waste of gold on Enchantress. You’re not a nuker so you wont be able to chain it with anything, you will have no use for it other than using it to KS and you’ll just be wasting 3k gold.

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Buriza-do Kyanon

Buriza is a decent enough item for damage however your attack speed isn’t high enough to utilise the critical strikes. Not only that but if you learn Impetus first, then you buy buriza, critical will override Impetus, so you lose Armor piercing arrow for 1 double damage hit (and chances are the Impetus would have done around the same damage as the crit anyway).

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Lifesteal overrides Impetus on manual cast, but Impetus overrides on auto-cast. Again you’ll be wasting money on an orb you wont use or lose out on your Impetus and extra damage.

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While this might seem like an item you would want to get on Enchant, I recommend avoiding it. It gives nice regen, hp & mana boost but to be honest, it doesn’t suit your role as a mid game ganker and a late game DPS-tank. There are better items for Enchant, and this one is best left for supporting heroes such as Venge and Dazzle.

6. General Game play Walkthrough
Early game: (Levels 1-10)

To start off with, make sure someone on your team has a chicken they can share with you. This will save you fountain trips and will get your items out to you. Enchantress has incredible lanestaying ability, make sure you abuse it!

Get your preferred regen items and head to a solo lane. Mid works well, but basically head to the lane where the other team’s solo is, (e.g most higher levels solo mid – Most lower levels solo Top scourge and bottom sentinel) and if you run into a 2 lane, simply swap asap. Enchantress’ lane control ability against another solo is pretty much only equaled by Viper and Warlock and if it’s -ap, Tinker and Syllabear. Heroes like LoA, Leshrac and NA will give you a hard time with their respective abilities, but you should still be able to out lane them with smart play.

If mid is your lane, ask a teammate to grab some observer wards for you on the chicken so you can place one at the top of the scourge hill. Having sight up the hill allows you to farm better, orbwalk your opponent better and see them coming if they try to attack you. Also placing one ward at each rune spot allows you to avoid river ganks as well as seeing any useful runes you may want to use.

Lane Controlling (Solo)

Your ability to control a lane is the main reason that you will be soloing. Making it impossible for your lane opponent to farm should be your main aim, sending and keeping them out of farming range if you can. The extra experience also allows you to rush level 7, giving you 0 cooldown on Impetus. Impetus is your harassing and lane controlling tool. It costs 40/45/50/55 mana on it’s respective levels, so it is somewhat costly in the mana department for an arrow ability. This is where your clarities and Nulls will help you. You should always make sure you keep enough mana for Nature’s Attendants. Harass with your normal attack as much as you can while you regen some mana and keep them on their toes with the occasional Impetus.

(If you need to learn more about how to use Impetus, how to harass with it, what “orb-walking” is and how to Animation Cancel you should read the section later in the guide called “Mini-Guide to Impetus”)


Your key to gaining the farming advantage is in your last hitting. Enchantress has a rather long backswing and lowish base damage as well as a slow projectile speed. Practice in single player mode until you get used to her animation. If you are controlling your lane well you will be able to move up closer to the creeps, meaning that your projectile has less distance to travel when you attack making last hitting much easier. You shouldn’t leave your lane to gank other lanes just yet, however you can call a stunner or a nuker to your lane to kill or send your lane opponent back to the fountain so you gain that much needed level and farming advantage.


While Enchantress has the ability to net early game kills, losing your life just to try to get one isn’t beneficial. You should be looking to aggressively control your lane and farm, as going for suicide kills will completely negate one of your main advantages; being able to stay in your lane for very long periods of time. Once level 7 comes you should be able to orb-walk-kill your lane opponent in 4 or 5 shots, but again don’t be suicidal, sometimes you have to settle for sending them back to the fountain with the feeling of “Just one more hit….” Mid game is where you’re hero killing potential should be realised.

Dual Lane

You wont always get the solo with Enchantress if you’re playing public games or less competitive game. In that instance you’ll have to make the most of it. You can still do very well if you play smart and have a good lane partner.

To start off with, make sure you lane with another hero who has a disable of some sort. Coupled with Impetus it will make early kills possible. Make sure you pick up some mana regen items like clarities, tell your partner to pick up a Ring of Basilius. You should pick up a headdress pretty quickly if your team has a shared chicken for the regen and to help your partner as well.

Enchantress still has great harassing and lanestaying ability in a dual lane. Make sure you use this to your benefit so you level up consistently and farm decently. Combo your lane opponent with your lane partner’s disable and throw your Impetus’ when you know they’ll be good. If you need to chase past a tower turn on your Nature’s Attendants and don’t be afraid to in this instance.

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6. General Gameplay Walkthrough cont.

Mid game: (Levels 10-16)

You should have farmed your way through to Boots of Travel around this stage. You could also be leveling Enchant now, so it becomes possible to leave your lane and help with ganks, pushes or whatever else your team is deciding to do.

When you finish your Eul’s, use your cyclones sparingly as you only have 6. I would only recommend using it to escape ganks, make an early team battle into 5v4, or to set up a gank so your team has enough time to get into position.


With Boots of Travel, some mana regen and full strength Impetus, killing enemies should now be your priority. If neither team is pushing, start hunting heroes to gank with a team mate or if you’re confident, on your own. Impetus is very powerful at this stage and will eat through any hero’s HP in 4/5/6 hits from full range at this stage.

When ganking, it’s always best to come from behind cutting off their escape. If they still try to run that way they will have to run past you, which is exactly what you want. Hit them with a few Impetus’ then Enchant them and keep hitting away. Don’t forget to animation cancel when chasing, this will ensure u stay close enough to keep attacking. If they happen to run the other way then you will have options. Either a nearby teammate should be coming from that direction, chase them so you can use Enchant or run back around the other way to cut them off again.

Try not to get fooled by a double bluff, a.k.a Juked, when they fake going one way then once you’ve gone around to cut them off again they either go back the original way you can from or hide in the bush and TP back to base. This can be embarrassing and lets them get away, this is why its best to have a teammate coming from the other direction.

Hopefully this cheap paint edited screen will show what I mean:

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These are some general gank spots you will want to use from the sentinels point of view. If you see a hero or two farming alone in any of these spots call a team mate or two to come with you and head the direction that the arrows show. Be careful though as if you’re playing against decent opposition they will have most of these spots warded. They will be aware that you’re coming and either call in help or teleport out. You can counter this by getting wards of your own and killing theirs or a gem. Alternatively you could just pray they didn’t buy any wards.


If your team is pushing, then chances are you will encounter a big team battle. You should never initiate the combat, staying behind your allies until the commencement of the fight. Your team’s role will be to use all their disables and AoE spells to cause as much damage to your opponents as possible, then try to protect you so you can deal out as much damage as possible. If you find yourself being targeting, turn on your heal as quick as possible and hang around any of your team with a mekansm or heal skill. Once the main battle has taken place it is then your job to get into the front lines and chase down any escaping heroes. With BoT, Enchant and Impetus, chasing down and killing weakened heroes should be no problem.


Once you get your Boots of Travel start teleporting around to where you can farm. If you see a massive creep waving pushing a lane close to your tower or base then teleport there and take priority farming over your teammates. Enchant a kobold for the MS aura if you come across one while neutraling. It only lasts two minutes but can help you if you’re chasing down a hero or escaping a gank.

You should never stop farming. If you’re going to help for a push or a gank, quickly farm some neutrals if your waiting for your team to get into position. Your ulti makes tanking neutrals a breeze. Once you’ve pushed that tower or ganked that hero, immediately head back to your lane, farming any neutrals you wish on the way and continue farming. You should RARELY have to return to the fountain to heal as your wisps will heal you and with either a Eul’s or a void stone you should have the mana to cast it when needed.

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Using Necronomicon

If you went for Necronomicon, you can use the summons to gank effectively in conjunction with your slow and another disabler. Use your Necros liberally, not only can they be used in team fights to burn mana and nuke but they can also help you farm as well as scout around trees and even harass your enemies if you’re still laning. You can use your Necrowarriors to tank the neutrals so you don’t take damage. You can also Enchant some neutrals to tank the damage for you while using your Necros to scout around for nearby enemies as mobile observers.

In team battles, spawn your Necros just before the engagement of the battle and turn Impetus on auto-cast so you wont have to worry about manual casting and animation canceling while using your Necros. Aim your Necros at their most mana dependant hero, such as a Necrolyte or Bane. Mana burn them A.S.A.P then continue attacking so the melee Necrowarrior can burn even more mana with mana break. If any of them kill your Necrowarrior with Last Will they will receive 200/400/600 damage depending on what level Necrobook you have, but they give 100 gold so don’t feed them to your opponents if you can help it.

Late game: (Levels 17-25)

If the game lasts this long you should have completed your item paths. In this part of the game it is the time for your late game carry/DPS hero to shine. Enchantress does have the ability to carry her team to victory, probably less effectively than a true carry hero, but her potential is there. Often referred to as a “Half-carry”.

If you are the lategamer in your team, then your team should be protecting you at all costs while you deal out your damage. Impetus is still extremely strong in this part of the game due to it’s Divine damage type.

Some examples of “true” carry heroes include, Troll, Morph, Silencer, Viper, Clinkz or Terrorblade. If your team has one of these heroes who is well farmed, then you should take a different role. Your role should now be tanking for them at all costs, even if it means your death. They should possess a higher DPS than you, however most of them will be somewhat more fragile than you if you’ve followed my builds (there’s a few exceptions).


Late game Enchantress can be daunting for enemies to face, if you farmed well and got the right items. With Radiance, Heart and Hex, she can go toe to toe with some of the strongest late game heroes in the game. Her tanking ability with Untouchable, Nature’s Attendants and Heart is really underestimated. She can heal off 1000 hp in 10 seconds while she continues to deal large amounts of damage.

If the game is dragging on and you find yourself being targeted by many disables and nukes you may want to invest into a BKB, Hood of Defiance or Linkin’s sphere as these will all provide some form of magic defense.


Ganks wont feature much in this part of the game due to both teams sticking in a group and pushing. If you do happen to see an opportunity to gank, take it, as a gank followed by a push can be game breaking. Use the same playstyle as stated above to gank heroes.


In team pushes your goal is to deal as much damage as possible with Impetus and keep your carry hero alive as long as possible (if it’s not you and have one of the aforementioned heroes on your team). Get in the fight before he does and don’t be afraid to take the focus fire. This time turn on your heal and be vigilant that you stay within 300 AoE of your main DPSer so if he is taking damage, he’ll get the full benefit from your heal. Don’t forget to use hex if you have it. You can either target their main DPS/Carry hero with your hex, as this will stop his damage output for 3 seconds, or you can target their main disabler in an attempt to kill him off before he can cast anything. Again slow any escaping heroes so that your team can chase them down.

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7. Good Allies to have:
Single Target Disablers:

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These heroes are the kind of heroes you want to be laning with if you’re not the solo. They have one or two abilities which is either a stun or a slow. They are also the kind of heroes you want to go ganking with. With their disables and/or nukes along with your slow and Impetus it will make early-mid game lane kills and ganks quick and effective.

Mass AoE Disablers:

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These allies come into their own around mid game when team fights start to happen more often. Their mass disables are mostly going to be their ultimate abilities and a well landed one can be game breaking. The mass disables allow you to attack freely with your Impetus, on whoever your team wants to take down first. If you went the Necro build you can burn a large amount of mana on their most mana dependant hero.


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Coupled with Nature’s Attendants further heals from your team mates will aid your team even more. This will allow your team to sustain a larger amount of damage without dying and it is often the difference between winning and losing.

8. Bad Enemies to face

Mana Burners:

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Mana burners are the bane to your existence. They will target you and you will despise them for it. Without mana you can no longer use your heal or slow and your damage output will be depleted without Impetus. I would suggest avoiding them at all costs early game, and gank them hard with 2 or more disables mid game.

Chain Disablers:

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Chain disablers are bad enemies to face, simply due to the fact that they can stop you from casting Nature’s Attendants while his team focus’ fire on you. In a case of facing such heroes you may want to invest in a Linkin’s Sphere or some other spell blocking items.

Chain Nukers:

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Chain nukers often get the better of Enchantress simply because it’s a large amount of damage in bursts which doesn’t allow her heal time to do it’s job. If you are laned against these types of heroes, call an ally to help or simply swap lanes. Mid-late game when their nukes lose effectiveness you can make short work of them. One exception is Pudge, who can Hook/Rot/Dismember you early/mid/late game and then tank your damage quite easily, be careful of him and make sure you stick with some team mates.

Late game Assassins:

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Late game assassins are lethal to Enchantress and most other heroes, late game. The only way to neutralise them is making sure they have such a terrible early game that they have no chance to farm at all. If you are facing WW heroes I would suggest rushing Necronomicon for the true sight ability. If they do farm well then your going to need a lot of wards and sticking with your team since you will have little chance of defeating them if they backstab you while you’re on your own.

9. Mini Guide to Using Impetus

Impetus can be somewhat difficult to understand for an inexperienced player. You will probably be wondering how to use it properly and how to get the most effective results from using it. I will attempt to show you the basics of using Impetus to harass, to chase and to kill.

Impetus deals bonus damage based on a percentage of the distance at the time of impact between Enchantress and the target.


First off, using Impetus to harass is crucial to dominating your lane matchups. Earlygame getting good Impetus’ every time on enemy heroes is vital for establishing control in your lane. When a melee hero comes up to last hit a creep, timing the cast of your Impetus is important. Too early and you’ll get a weak +50 dmg (lvl 4 Impetus), too late and he could be out of range all together. Waiting until he has hit the creep and just as he turns around to run away is the optimum time to let off an Impetus. Chances are he didn’t see you throw it, if he did he’s already clicked and is running away watching helplessly as the Impetus deals +160 dmg.

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If you’re facing a ranged hero, wait until he is coming in to either harass you or last hit. Throw a few normal attacks at him to make him turn around and as he starts running back, throw an Impetus. If he runs closer to you after you threw your Impetus, attack him again and if you are level 5 or 7 with low cooldown Impetus, try to throw another one just to annoy him even more!

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Hint: After you’ve thrown an Impetus, if you know you wont throw another one straight away, immediately run in the opposite direction that you threw it. This will widen the gap slightly increasing the damage dealt. It may only increase it 10 or so damage, but if you do this every time it adds up.


Chasing is where you will see the real power of the Impetus. It is not uncommon to see +200 dmg on Impetus when chasing fast heroes such as Bounty Hunter, Bloodseeker or Slardar. Coupled with Enchant’s 7 seconds of slow it makes for lethal damage output in a short amount of time. A lot of people make the mistake of just turning Impetus on auto-cast, standing still and attacking. This will mean you wont be in a good position to chase down any escaping heroes. I find that manually casting Impetus at all times is more effective than auto cast. This allows you to cancel the “Cast backswing” more efficiently by immediately issuing another command after you throw your Impetus, a.k.a Animation canceling.

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Keep in mind that the maximum damage on Impetus is +400. Which at level four is a distance of 2500 units.

Animation Canceling

When your hero casts a spell, the animation takes place. Once the effect of the spell has taken place(your Impetus arrow is projected), there is a “cast backswing” in the animation, which is just an extra bit of animation for aesthetics (e.g. CM waving her wand, Enchantress spins her spear over her head etcetc) In other words, IT WASTES TIME when you could be moving closer to your opponent for another attack, or casting another spell!

To animation cancel all you have to do, once the spell is cast/effect has taken place, immediately issue another command, either to move, or to attack. The command you issued, overrides the backswing of the animation and performs that command instead.

You may be thinking “But I’m not good enough to Animation cancel” or “I couldn’t be bothered” but let me tell you Animation canceling is not something just for those advanced players you see in all those league replays. It is easy to do and improves your chasing ability tenfold, all you need a basic understanding of what it is and some practice! Heroes with 400+ MS with their S&Y’s will be thinking “WTF why aren’t I moving away from her!?!?” when you are running along side them throwing your Impetus’ and canceling the cast backswing.

10. Using Enchant to it’s Full Potential

Enchant is a multidimensional skill with more uses than many people care to know about. Most people tend to neglect the second part of the skill that allows you to dominate many things and just use it for the ownage 7 second slow. In doing this they are missing out on a large portion of what this skill can do for you in terms of ganking, turning the tide is battles and so on. In this next section I will attempt to explain most of the uses of this skill outside of just using it to slow.

Enchant only lasts for 2 minutes, so you shouldn’t be aiming to play her like a Chen. Enchant has a fast cooldown so the idea when Enchanting creeps is to get them as you plan to use them. For example, if you were planning to gank bottom, run through the forest, quickly pick up the first useful creep you see and continue on your way to gank.

Neutral Creeps for Ganking

Enchanting neutral creeps is probably the most obvious of all things that can be Enchanted. There are many neutral creeps you can Enchant, from Gnoll Assassins right through to Satyr Hellcallers. However for the purpose of ganking there are only a few neutral creeps that are of any use.

# Centaur Khan
* Endurance Aura gives 15% increased attack speed.
* Warstomp ability the deals 25 damage and stuns for 2 seconds in a small AoE.

Probably the best neutral creep to enchant. It has reasonably high hp, a good aura and the stomp is the main reason you want this creep.

# Polar Furbolg Ursa Warrior
* Hoofstomp ability that deals 25 damage and stuns for 2 seconds in a small AoE.

About as good as the Centaur but it doesn’t have an aura. It does have 100 more mana though, so that’s 1 extra stomp you can perform over the Centaur.

# Kobold Taskmaster
* Endurance Aura gives 12% increased movement speed.

Who can argue that +12% MS isn’t good for ganking? That’s all you will use this creep for.

# Satyr Hellcaller
* Unholy Aura gives 2 hp/sec regen
* Shockwave that deals 100 damage to land units in a line.

An extra 100 damage nuke and some regen with this creep. It also deals about 60 damage per attack, coupled with a stomper and your slow it can deal a decent amount of damage early game.

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Neutral Creeps for Pushing

If your team is planning a push simply make your way through a forest and pick up as many creeps as you can. They don’t have to be the ones mentioned above, however they do help more. If you run out of the bush with a Centaur, Hellcaller and an Orge to push a lane in the early stages of the game, unless you’re facing their whole team it will be tough to stop you taking the tower. Do be cautious though as Enchanted creeps gain no extra HP and when they die they will be giving out bounty, so you don’t want to just feed them to your opponents.

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Image Heroes

Another cool fact about Enchant is that it can also be used on Images(not geomancer however). When your facing Image heroes such as Naga Siren, Phantom Lancer, Terrorblade or Chaos Knight, you should always aim to Enchant one of their Images away from them when they use their Image abilities. This can seriously hamper a Chaos Knight, as his image skill is his ultimate and you are effectively making it 33% weaker by taking an image and turning it back against him, and a Terrorblade who, without Manta Style can only get 2 Images up.

Naga and PL are somewhat less effected as taking away 1 image from them wont hamper them too greatly as their images are easier to create than the one’s mentioned above. However it can still be effective to have one of their images fighting against them.

Turning the Tide of Battle by Stealing Summons

In large team battles Enchant can be used to hopefully turn the tide in certain situations. If you are playing an -ap game, Enchant can be used on Chen’s persuaded creeps. This will not only neutralise one third of his creep army, but can be used right back against him.

Another one worth mentioning is you can Enchant the Blue and Fire Panda when Pandaren uses Primal Split, the Earth Panda is Immune to magic so you can’t Enchant him. When you Enchant one and kill the other two, it results in a suicide from Pandaren, but you get to keep the Enchanted Panda until the timer runs out, which is uber cool! (Thanks to Da.Waaagh for helping me test this!)

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Other examples of Enchanting summons that can help turn the tide of a battle, such as Lycan’s wolves, Beast Master’s animals, Morphling’s Replicate and Necronomicon summons.

11. Replays

My nub replays

I got another recent replay. This game was in 6.42, IH game vs a clan. I didn’t play solo / carry with Enchant, instead I played as a support / ganker / tank. The game isn’t very high level, but it’s around the level of a standard friendly IH with some friends.

Started off laned with Spirit Breaker against Bristleback + Magnus, I stupidly get 1stblooded a few minutes in while trying to block them from 1stblooding SB. After that I just try to harass and farm as much as I can while not dying. After a while we start ganking and pushing, I use a lot of the strategy from my guide in this game, the skill build, orb-walking, ganking, pushing and what I could get made of the item build before the game ended. Our Viper was the Radiance buyer which meant I didn’t need to get it, so I finished Guinsoo after my core build and started to make Heart.

In the end we dominated them pretty easily with double their killscore, but I liked this replay because it shows most things in my guide and how they can be done in a normal, non league, non pro game which most of the guide readers play. smile.gif


Attached File Enchant_vs_mR.clan.w3g ( 997.25k )

Ok I have a 1.21 replay of me nubbing it up with Enchantress. The game is a pub game, however there are 5 of my friends (3 on sent, 2 on scourge+me) the mode is -ar. The NZ host (Im Aus) gives me a ping about 0.200. So with a small amount of delay I start the game fairly badly in terms of my -cs. After a while I got used to it and finally start to land a few last hits.

The teams were fairly lopsided in terms of early game and late game capability, ours having most of the early game capability while Sentinel side had a potentially strong late game. Knowing this we decided we needed to push hard and fast if we were to win, so farming opportunities were few and far between. The game is tense and there’s a lot of team fighting. Can we push quick enough to win before sentinels superior late game takes over or will they hold off long enough to get the items they need?

All in all I didn’t play particularly well, with an ending score of only 3-2, but I feel that this replay is a good one to put here, because it shows how the average dota player would play Enchantress, as opposed to just showing you replays of how pros play her in league games.


Attached File Enchant_Replay_1.21.w3g ( 902.59k )

Pro Replays

This replay is of Yoshi[P] playing a totally dominant Enchantress against TeG in a recent -ap draft match in semifinals of ESL. The reason I’m posting this replay is to show how Enchant can and will completely dominate her lane against heroes other than the top scourge soloers. Yoshi makes it impossible for his lane opponent to farm and keeps him underfarmed all game.

Another reason this replay is awesome, is because Yoshi shows how to totally counter an enemy Chen and pretty much render him useless other than his heal. Not a good replay if you’re looking for “how to get out of a losing situation” because in this one he dominates start to finish with good strategy, a good build and abusing Enchant’s strengths as much as possible.


Attached File ESL_PS_tPD_vs._TeG_3.w3g ( 1.44mb )

This replay I particularly enjoyed watching. It is of MYM|Maelk playing Enchantress in an IH -ap game. The reason I enjoyed this one so much was that he wasn’t playing with the Imba 6.37 Sentinel team, thus making the performance stand out more than usual. Most of the strategy I depict in my guide is used to some degree in this replay(although he does most things 76 and a half times better than me), He buys MKB instead of Radiance because the Omniknight on his team already bought a Radiance, Otherwise the builds are much the same.


Attached File Maelk_s_IHCS_Enchantress.w3g ( 2.19mb )

12. Conclusion

Thanks for reading my guide, I hope you liked it. I would appreciate some constructive criticism to improve this one and any future attempts I make at writing a guide. Please no flames though!

I hope I’ve helped out some new players and more experienced players alike with some new and old builds, some decent strategy and a few high quality, enjoyable replays (along with the nubness of my own replay happy.gif).

Also, please, leave a comment on what you liked or didn’t like… Even if you don’t like it, let me know so I could possibly change some things… and if you do like it, let me know as well =) Thanks.

13. Credits

I’d just like to thank a few people who helped me write the guide, as well as the many people who’ve given me feedback on how to improve it.

Jasos: Thanks for all you’re help and support (scotch) bro, couldn’t have done it without you. wink.gif wub.gif
Da.Waaagh: Thanks for helping me test a lot of things regarding Enchant! Also thanks for owning my nub ass in Ladder the other day sad.gif
Heffa/Matt/Dave + rest of CdeG: Thank you guys for all the initial support and feedback! You guys are pretty own B)
Beast_Pete: Thanks Pete for your review and support. Helped me fix the layout and builds a bit. Appreciated.
TheJoe: Thanks Joe for the all the feedback. Helped me fix the core build and item build justifications among other things.
Farmasutra: For helping me correct information about Untouchable. Thanks mate. smile.gif
Yoshi[P]: For letting me use your replay, as well as supporting me! Thanks again. wub.gif
Jogi: For suggesting the section about Using Enchant! Thanks!
Yank-Fan: For giving me awards ^^
Everyone else who gave me feedback and support: Thanks everyone it’s very much appreciated!


v1.00: Guide Completed
v1.01: Replays Added
v1.02: New section added (Using Enchant)
v1.03: New 1.21 Replay added of me actually playing!!! lol
v1.04: Editted some incorrect information about Untouchable (Thanks to Farmasutra for pointing this out)
v1.05: Changed the layout of the Item builds and the gameplay walkthrough. Fixed some colors
v1.06: Removed the DR/Aegis build after feedback. Fixed up some stuff on the other builds (changed Names, removed some items, fixed some strategy etc)
v1.07: Reinstated DR/Aegis as optional items rather than a Recommended item path. Changed Untouchable in the skillbuild to level 9. Fixed up some more layout issues. Added a replay of Yoshi[P]’s enchantress!
v1.08: Slightly Modified Core build. Removed a 1.20 Replay. Changed the order of two subsections. Removed Blinkpetus, as it was Silly.
v1.10: Updated for 6.42! Rewrote the whole strategy section to be more concise. Added a new 6.42 replay as well!
v1.11: Toned down colours a lot, it was causing many cases of bleeding eyes ^^ (don’t send me your hospital bill please). Changed some item orders in core build. Added some more summons that Enchant is able to pursuade.
v1.12: Changed the order of some sections. Added more justification for all the item builds.
v1.13: Updated all the screenshots… They’re now 53x better. Fixed a lot of strategy and information based on feedback from HGC judges. Changed one Item path from Radiance/Heart to Guinsoo/Heart.
v1.14: Updated for 6.46b. Changed nulls cost, re-did the Necronomicon build, so Necronomicon comes much earlier and added that treads are fine.

14. Q&A
I will attempt to answer any questions from readers posts in this section once I get some!


QUOTE(TEHPWNZOR @ Jan 22 2007, 06:05 AM)

I’m just curious here, but what does “Acquisition Range: 800″ mean?

A: Acquisition range is the range an opponent has to be for Enchantress to automatically “aquire” them as enemies and attack without any command.


QUOTE(MasterJoe @ Feb 26 2007, 09:23 AM)

There is that one replay I think TeG vs. TPD where Enchantress gets Treads. What do you think of that?

Well pretty much every guide in existance has the arguement about Travels VS Treads…. and pretty much it just comes down to opinions…. and no one’s ever right, they just have their opinion.

The replay of Yoshi I put in my guide also shows Enchant getting Treads. Which I stated that I disagreed with, but wasn’t going to make an arguement over it because thats just my opinion! and he played so well anyway.

I personally dont like treads at all, on any hero. I prefer map mobility and extra MS over 35% IAS, and I’d rather fill my inventory with items that’ll help me survive longer in the fight over carrying a TP scroll all game… and im pretty sure if I did put treads in the guide there’d be people complain about that too wink.gif


QUOTE(p33-3rr @ Mar 9 2007, 09:43 AM)

question – what is the best way to find out the ‘advanced data’ (e.g. acquisition range) for all heroes? can you give a definition for all the advanced fields?


: (Taken from Mechanincs forums)
Acquisition Range: See above.
Damage Point: Damage point for ranged units is when the projectile is launched, not when it hits. E.g Enchantress releases her projectile 0.3 seconds after her attack animation begins.
Attack Backswing: The time it takes the animation that takes place after your projectile is launched, to be performed. Often refered to as “filler” animation, and can be canceled by issuing another command immediately, (a.k.a. Animation Cancelling.)
Projectile speed: The speed at which your animated projectile moves.
Cast Point: The same as Damage point, only it happens when you cast spells.
Cast Backswing: Same as Attack Backswing, only it happens when you cast spells.
Base Attack Time: The hero’s Base attack time, before any IAS modifiers are added or subtracted. Cannot be altered.
Starting Attack Cooldown: The time it takes the hero to perform 1 attack on level 1, only calculating the IAS from base agility.


QUOTE(eNdr @ Feb 9 2007, 06:28 AM)

Good Guide and Good job.i think many player’s build MoM For Enc. and MoM very useful for Enchantress.

QUOTE(senritsu @ Mar 16 2007, 04:49 AM)

what about MoM?

MoM isn’t a very good item and lifesteal isn’t a very good orb.

You’re either paying all that money for an orb you wont use in team fights (when this orb should be used, using it when farming isn’t beneficial) or lose out on your Impetus which is just ludacris. She also takes +20% damage when its activated. She has a low hp pool, why would u want her to take even more damage than she should??? Her heal IS good, but it doesn’t make you invincible.

The attackspeed and movespeed could be usefull, but shes not the hero where you need a “frenzy” type move. With BoT+Enchant, people will have a hard time getting away from her as it is… and the attack speed, while pretty good, only lasts for a short time and isn’t worth the price of the item, especially when you’re orbwalking/animation cancelling.

MoM would be the last item I would recommend for Enchantress, the negatives heavily outweigh the positives and it’s really a waste of money and her potential! It makes me cringe every time I see it bought on her. :ph34r:


QUOTE(jutfory @ Apr 25 2007, 06:38 PM)

does Enchant slow attack speed?

To my knowledge it just slows movement speed. If it slowed IAS aswell, then combined with you’re ulti it would be a bit imba.


QUOTE(pro23456 @ Jul 2 2007, 01:55 AM)

What if you casted impetus then the enemy blinked away or used town portal
will the spear follow the enemy?

If they enemy blinks or teleports, the Impetus wont damage them, even though the animation of the Impetus still follows the target (after blinks). This is because when they blink they are Invulnerable for a short amount of time meaning that any targeted spells such as Assassinate, Impetus, Storm Bolt etc are all cancelled and don’t do any damage. Town Portal recreates the hero at a different location, there are very few spells that follow an enemy through a teleport (Omnislash, Netherstrike) and even those would need to be cast with precise timing.

Kael, The Invoker Guide By HybridCore

Friday, May 30th, 2008

Author of this guide is HybridCore

Dota Allstars Invoker Kael Art Image


The Invoker is an advanced skilled hero. Having three reagents with him, Quas, Wex & Exort and by combining them you form a new spell. He has disappeared from the DotA Allstars scene for almost 40 versions. He was the epiphany of imba and he still is! He is a combination of many heroes but being range, he shouldn’t really be tanking.

The Invoker is a caster with a bit of DPS on his hands. His reagents no longer provide him with attributes making him dependent on items to increase his health but the reagents do provide regen, attack speed and move speed, & damage. The Invoker does well in pushing lineups, can do very well in AoE lineups and can engage enemies with ease. Whatever your team needs, he can adjust.

You are a pseudo-carry hero as your main focus is to level up constantly by creeping and participating in ganks whenever possible. I will detail each spell and the combinations involve. But he is still, in a way, imbalanced in term of his style of play. This hero was never meant to be played with inexperience teammates so if your team can’t hold on till you reach level 20 then choosing this hero isn’t advisable.

Hero’s Story

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Skills Description

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Quas (Q)
0.75 HP regen per level per instance.

Level 1 – 0.75 HP (02.25 HP)
Level 2 – 1.50 HP (04.50 HP)
Level 3 – 2.25 HP (06.75 HP)
Level 4 – 3.00 HP (09.00 HP)
Level 5 – 3.75 HP (11.25 HP)
Level 6 – 4.50 HP (13.50 HP)
Level 7 – 5.25 HP (15.75 HP)

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Wex (W)
Gives 2% AS and 1% MS per level per instance.

Level 1 – 02% AS and 1% MS (06% AS and 03% MS)
Level 2 – 04% AS and 2% MS (12% AS and 06% MS)
Level 3 – 06% AS and 3% MS (18% AS and 09% MS)
Level 4 – 08% AS and 4% MS (24% AS and 12% MS)
Level 5 – 10% AS and 5% MS (30% AS and 15% MS)
Level 6 – 12% AS and 6% MS (36% AS and 18% MS)
Level 7 – 14% AS and 7% MS (42% AS and 21% MS)

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Exort (E)
3 damage per level per instance.

Level 1 – 03 Damage (09 Damage)
Level 2 – 06 Damage (18 Damage)
Level 3 – 09 Damage (27 Damage)
Level 4 – 12 Damage (36 Damage)
Level 5 – 15 Damage (45 Damage)
Level 6 – 18 Damage (54 Damage)
Level 7 – 21 Damage (63 Damage)

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Learn Invoke®
Combines the properties of the elements currently being manipulated creating a new spell at Invoker’s disposal. The invoked spell is determined by the combinations of Quas, Wex, and Exort.

Level 1 – 1 Invoke, 30 CD
Level 2 – 2 Invoke, 30 CD
Level 3 – 2 Invoke, 15 CD
Level 4 – 2 Invoke, 05 CD

Cooldown: 30/30/15/05
Manacost: 20/40/60/80

Invoked Spells

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Deafening Blast QWE B
Invoker unleashes a mighty sonic wave in front of him, dealing up to 280 damage to any enemy unit it collides with based on Exort. The sheer impact from the blast is enough to knock those enemy units back for a maximum of 1.75 seconds based on Quas, in addition to preventing their attacks for a further 1-4 seconds based on Wex.

Quas – 0.25/0.50/0.75/1.00/1.25/1.50/1.75
Wex – 1.0/1.5/2.0/2.5/3.0/3.5/4.0
Exort – 40/80/120/160/200/240/280

Cooldown: 25
Manacost: 200

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Cold Snap QQQ Y
Invoker draws the heat from an enemy, chilling them to their very core for up to 6 seconds based on Quas. Any damage taken in this state will briefly stun them for 0.4 seconds and deal 30 damage. Triggers cooldown goes from 0.8 to 0.6 seconds based on Quas.

Quas – 3.0/3.5/4.0/4.5/5.0/5.5/6.0 (Duration)
Quas – 0.8/0.8/0.7/0.7/0.7/0.6/0.6 (Cooldown)

Cooldown: 20
Manacost: 100

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Ghost Walk QQW V
Invoker manipulates the ice and electrical energies around him, rendering his body invisible. The elemental imbalance created as a consequence slows nearby enemies by up to 40% based on Quas, and Invoker from 30% to 0% based on Wex.

Quas – 10/15/20/25/30/35/40%
Wex – 30/25/20/15/10/5/0%

Cooldown: 60
Manacost: 300

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Ice Wall QQE G
Generates a wall of solid ice directly in front of invoker for up to 10 seconds. The bitter cold emanating from its greatly slows nearby enemies based on Quas and deals up to 30 damage each second based on Exort.

Quas – 20/40/60/80/100/120/140%
Wex – 5/10/15/20/25/30/35

Cooldown: 20
Manacost: 125

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Alacrity WWW Z
Invoker infuses an ally with an immense surge of energy, increasing their attack speed to a maximum of 160% based on Wex for 5 seconds.

Wex – 40/60/80/100/120/140/160%

Cooldown: 20
Manacost: 125

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Tornado WWQ X
Unleashes a fast moving tornado that picks up enemy units in its path, suspending them helplessly in the air shortly before allowing them to plummet to their doom. Deals 375 damage based on Wex and Quas, with distance up to 3100 based on Wex. Holds enemies in the air for up to 2.2 seconds based on Quas.

Quas – 85/110/125/140/157.5/172.5/187.5 (Damage)
Quas – 1.00/1.20/1.40/1.60/1.80/2.00/2.2 (Duration)
Wex – 85/110/125/140/157.5/172.5/187.5 (Damage)
Wex – 700/1100/1500/1900/2300/2700/3100 (Range)

Cooldown: 25
Manacost: 150

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Invoker builds up a charge of electromagnetc energy at a targeted location which automatically detonates after 2-4 seconds based on Wex. The detonation covers a 700 area, dealing up to 300 damage based on Exort and draining up to 400 mana based on Wex.

Quas – 100/150/180/210/240/270/300
Wex – 100/150/200/250/300/350/400

Cooldown: 40
Manacost: 250

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Sun Strike EEE T
Sends a catastrophic ray of fiery energy from the sun at any targeted location after 1.7 second delay, incinerating all enemies standing beneath it. Deals 75-450 damage based on Exort which is spread over all enemy units within its 200 AoE.

Wex – 75/160/200/250/320/400/450

Cooldown: 60
Manacost: 250

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Chaos Meteor EEW D
Invoker pulls a flaming meteor from space onto the targeted location. Upon landing, the meteor rolls forward dealing up to 260 damage per sec based on Exort for up to 1550 range based on Wex. Deals minor residual damage to units that get it.

Wex – 500/675/850/1025/1200/1375/1550
Exort – 80/110/140/170/200/230/260

Cooldown: 30
Manacost: 200

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Forge Spirit EEQ F
Invoker forges a spirit embodying the strength of fire and fortitude of Ice. Attack range, damage, and life is based on Exort while mana, duration, and armor is based on Quas. The elementals scorching attack is capable of melting the armor on enemy heroes by 1 each hit to a maximum of 10 for 5 seconds. By maxing Quas and Exort. Invoker is capable of creating 2 spirits instead of one.

Lava Spawn
Attack Range: 300/400/500/600/700/800/900 (Exort)
Hit Points: 300/400/500/600/700/800/900 (Exort)
Damage: 29/38/47/56/65/74/83 (Exort)
Armor: 1/2/3/4/5/6/7 (Quas)
Mana Base: 100/150/200/250/300/350/400 (Quas)
Duration: 20/30/40/50/60/70/80 (Quas)

Mana Regen: 4
Movement Speed: 320

Cooldown: 70
Manacost: 200

Invoked Spells & Usage

Dota Allstar Kael the Invoker
If the skill is in cooldown, it will remain in cooldown. The skill will not refresh if it is invoked again.
You will also falter every time you cast one of your reagents but this was not an issue with the old invoker.

Deafening Blast
Combination: QWE
Mechanics: The skill deals magical damage and knocks enemies back to about 100 range for a maximum of 1.75 seconds. Enemy heroes may still cast spells though after the knock back stun.
Strategics: This is both an offensive and defensive ability. This skill possesses an old skill called “pacifist” (Classic Necronomicon had this). It prevents enemies from attacking which helps greatly against heroes who rely more on their normal attacks (Phantom Assassin, Faceless Void, etc.). You should use this spell to initiate or to disrupt the battle flow.

Cold Snap
Combination: QQQ
Mechanics: A negative buff on enemy units and it lasts a maximum 6 seconds. Any damage taken in this state will briefly stun them for 0.4 seconds and deal 30 damage. Triggers cooldown goes from 0.8 to 0.6 seconds based on Quas.
Strategics: Enemy heroes can get permastunned with this coupled with you and an ally’s attack but don’t attack if you can invoke another skill. You can make use of this when your allies have their own means of generating attackspeed. With 6 seconds, you can potentially inflict 200 damage on a single target.

Ghost Walk
Combination: QQW
Mechanics: Invoker becomes invisible and can move freely slowing enemy units around him. The cooldown of invisisbilty is 100 seconds. You can break invisibility if you initiate an active command. The effect of Ghost Walk is easily recognized by the icy effects on opponents just like Radiance.
Strategics: Mainly used for escaping and backstabbing but is easily countered by truesight. You should use this skill together with 3 levels of Wex to achieve your maximum movespeed.

Ice Wall
Combination: QQE
Mechanics: Creates a wall of ice in front of Invoker, you cannot target its position. Ally units may pass this without a problem but enemy units are slowed by a large amount and receive very little damage from this.
Strategics: Great for escaping and great for stopping enemies in their tracks. This skill is more of a disable since they hardly escape making great use of AoE spells. If you have dagger, you can blink in front of heroes and use it to block enemy escape routes for a few seconds. I don’t find this spell useful.

Combination: WWW
Mechanics: Affects ally units only and increases their attackspeed for 5 seconds.
Strategics: You can use this on yourself if you are better suited than the closest ally. Use it on heroes that revolve around their attack and use it when they are already attacking to make use of those 5 seconds. Tiny is a great example of an ally who will usually need it.

Combination: WWQ
Mechanics: The longest range nuke in game with 3100. This skill needs two reagents to reach its full damage and lifts enemies into the air (2.2 secs max based on Quas).
Strategics: This is simple to use, use it with any combination of spells. You can also use this to snipe or scout large portions of the map. The skill revolves around Wex and Quas which is not a very helpful combination in the skill build. The skill needs to be maxed out for it to be deadly. I do not prioritize the use of this skill, it’s useful late game because both Quas and Wex will be maximized by then.

Combination: WWE
Mechanics: Deals magical damage. It gives 300 damage and burns up to 400 mana and affects units within 700 range. Has a 2~4 second detonation where units within its range are pushed back to a certain degree.
Strategics: This is not meant for farming but rather the main point of this spell is to burn enough mana during team battles. The skill is more effective against heroes with low base mana such as Strength heroes. The spell is effective mid game where Wex will be at a decent level in burning mana. Use it in the middle of team battles to scatter opponents.

Sun Strike
Combination: EEE
Mechanics: Maximum damage is 450 and it deals magical damage; the 450 damage will split if there are more than 2 targets in an area of 200. The skill is global and you can target in unexplored or fogged areas.
Strategics: The skill is great to use once Invoke has been learnt where you should have 2 levels of Exort dealing 160 damage and so on. It is best used to help allies on the opposite lanes for harassment especially when your allies are single targeting stunners. But this has the longest cooldown of any of his nuking spells with 60 seconds because of it being global to avoid spamming. Compare this skill with Lina’s Light Strike Array or Leshrac’s Split Earth, good timing is all you need to land a perfect strike.

Chaos Meteor
Combination: EEW
Mechanics: It deals magical damage. It has a maximum range of 1550. The residual damage is the actual percentage of the impact onto the target and deals x%.
Strategics: This is your strongest spell in your arsenal and it is great for farming due to its damage overtime. This skill kills creeps instantly almost throughout the game so it never really runs out of power. Because of its damage overtime and the way the meteor moves, it forces enemy heroes to scatter during team battles.

Forge Spirit
Combination: EEQ
Mechanics: Look in Skills Descriptions. This skill revolves around summons that can be purged or dispelled. They decrease the armor of HEROES ONLY.
Strategics: I’d recommend the pushing strategy for this. They actually contribute more than the silly Eidolons because they deal full damage on almost anything. They can help last hit early although not important due to their time duration. Use these guys together with Necronomicon to achieve their full potential.

Skill Build with Justifications

Dota Allstars Invoker

These skill builds were meant to adapt to certain types of teams but due to your versatilty, the late stages of the game are always the same. Both Skill Builds concentrate on Exort!

The Aggressive Invoker
Quas – 2,19,21,22,23,24,25
Wex – 4,7,9,12,14,17,18
Exort – 1,3,6,8,11,13,16
Learn Invoke – 5,10,15,20

We want at least one level of Quas, Wex & Exort in there in order to remain versatile the whole game. Exort and Wex are to be maximized first and then Quas. Learn Invoke whenever available and finally maximize Quas. One level of Quas is needed solely because of its combination involved to use certain spells. Quas’ bonuses are not as helpful as Exort and Wex. Exort provides damage which is good for last hit creeping while Wex’ usefulness comes into spells and the movespeed bonus is always helpful. Focusing on Exort and Wex allows you to damage and amplify the range of spells and the duration of some effects. Quas focuses more on a pushing style in regards to his summon and the ability to slow down enemies.

The Pushing Invoker
Quas – 2,7,8,11,13,17,18
Wex – 4,19,21,22,23,24,25
Exort – 1,3,6,7,9,14,16
Learn Invoke – 5,10,15,20

We alternate between Exort and Quas while leveling Wex last. Leveling Quas early game is better than leveling it at mid game because the bonuses are pointless if left at level 1. The build focuses on Forge Spirit which means we will be concentrating on some heavy pushing. This strategy would include heroes like: Syllabear, Pugna, Rhasta, and Enigma although the list is not exclusive. The build follows Necronomicon as the Extension item. Not forgetting that maximizing both Exort and Quas gives you two lava spawns.

Item Build with Justifications

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Strength – 19 + 1.4 | Agility – 20 + 1.9 | Intelligence – 22 + 2.5
Attack Range: 600 | Movement Speed: 280

Invoker’s lowest stat growth is his strength with 1.4 per level. He doesn’t gain any attribute bonuses to help him out so we can only fix this through items. His survivability is a question because you give enemies a lot of reasons to target you first. You seriously need health and mana items so if they revolve around Ultimate Orb then it will work in invoker’s favor.

Wards are essential for the team and they are essential to your survivability; buy them when necessary. Carry TP Scrolls if necessary and eventually acquire Boots of Travels. When you finish Travels, gold becomes abundant so buying wards for the team becomes your job.

Bracers – usually 3 circlets are enough but if surviving early game is easy then upgrading them is unnecessary and you can opt for a better item in Ultimate Orb or even a Point Booster. You should have at least 2 bracers to benefit from stats (to help keep your health above 1000) and 3 bracers for safety measures.

Guinsoo’s Scythe of Vyse – the new and improved but expensive sheepstick actually helps out due to that Ultimate Orb added into the recipe. The stats provided and the much needed Hex adds to your versatility for the team. The mana regen doesn’t make much of an impact since the majority of spells cost over 200 mana.

Linken Sphere – this is your first major stat item if you face a lot of single targeting stunner. The much needed survivability and the mana regen helps you remain with your teammates during team battles.

Some Further Item-Discussion

Dota All Star Invoker

The items added here are more of extension items than Luxury.

Eul’s Scepter of Divinity – a great item but Guinsoo’s Scythe of Vyse beats this due to the stat gain. In comparison, you don’t need the cyclones since it doesn’t complement your skills. You don’t need the movespeed since Wex can already provide it coupled with Travels and since Linken Sphere has better regen, you simply don’t need it. This is more of a utility item if your team needs the extra disable.

Eye of Skadi *Luxury* – if your teammates are not in need of Guinsoo’s Scythe of Vyse or Linkin Sphere then it might be more advisable to go for this. The components of Eye of Skadi are very helpful for the Invoker. Unlike most heroes who try to get this for its frost attack, Invoker makes use of the health, mana, armor, strength, agility and intelligence. You can become a DPS hero with Orchid Malevolence (not to ignore Guinsoo), survive longer with Satanic while invoking Alacrity on yourself and invoking Cold Snap on an enemy. Used mostly in pubs since DPS is everything in pubs.

Necronomicon – I recommend this item if you are moving towards being a pusher. With Quas and Exort, you can have your team focus more on pushing. The stats provide INT and the much needed STR for the Invoker. The Endurance aura is great since you will only have one level of Wex early on. The mana burn is of course just an added nuke to your arsenal and as an added plus, Necronomicon 3 gains truesight.

Orchid Malevolence – this is another utility item for the Invoker and just like Eul’s Scepter, you get it when your team needs it. The damage amplification can potentially kill a single target once focused fired and is actually helpful against heroes like Faceless Void. This item has become the alternative to AC in terms of IAS for INT heroes since the recipe change.

Invoker Spell Synergy & Techniques

Dota Allstars Invoker Guide

This list is not exclusive and may expand.

Battle Mage:
Although the term can be deceiving, you are half a battle mage and half a caster. You are also half a carry hero because of the constant leveling. At level 20 you become a formidable FoE.

Your play style is to be played like Earthshaker (You stop pushes and render enemies helpless) and Zeus (You stay away from enemy fire while casting your spells); both of these guys have one thing in common and that is to join a gank when you can and supporting your teammates. But you NEVER tank for the team, it is your teamss job to have you survive unless you are not the prime carry of the team

Invoker has no casting animation when casting a spell but he does laugh after he succeeds in doing so. Because he has no casting animation, this enables you to hit the opponent after casting a spell and you can move freely at the same time. Take advantage of this.

Channel Disrupt:[
You can disrupt channeling spells with Deafening Blast and EMP due to their knock back effect although Deafening is highly favored. Tornado also works because of the cyclone so the same goes with Eul’s Scepter. You can also use Cold Snap for its mini-stun effect and of course if you have sheepstick, use it.

Rune Check:
Haste is great, in a way, that all you need is 3 levels of Exort and any two combinations of nukes with you. Double Damage is great since you all you need are 3 levels of Wex for the AS and MS. Regen is your greatest asset early game if you are low on mana. And get Invisibility to run away or set up Ice Wall or any other spell for that matter.

Combining Nukes:
This contains Deafening Blast, Chaos Meteor, & Tornado/Sun Strike. The only exception to this combo is Tornado because you need both Quas and Wex for it to do any real damage so in this case, we use Sun Strike as a finishing maneauver. Deafening Blast and Chaos Meteor should already be invoked. Open up with Chaos Meteor and then Deafening Blast for the knock-back effect. Tornado/Sun Strike will be a finishing blow or else an added nuke. EMP is neglected because opponents have an easy time dodging this spell. Of course, this all works even better when you have allies around.

Ghost Wall:
This contains Ice Wall and Ghost Walk. This combination is very helpful at slowing down opponents. You start off by using Ghost Walk to move ahead of opponents and casting Ice Wall afterwards for your teammates to catch up. Cast Deafening Blast to push back opponents as an added effect.

Ghost Hunting:
Simply activate Ghost Walk and hunt for victims with some of your deadly combinations (although limited before level 20) but be wary of True Sight. Ghost Walk lasts longer than the cooldown of the spell but your presence is easily recognizable by a frost effect on enemies and you need 3 levels of Wex to get your movespeed up early on. You can scout and escape with this.

Cold Snap-Alacrity:
This contains Cold Snap and Alactriy (…they really do). Cast Alacrity first and then Cold Snap and watch your ministuns fly. This combination lasts a few seconds but the cooldowns are short so an ally with a stun should be assisting. If an ally is better off with Alacrity then give it to him.

Forge Spirit Frenzy:
These are helpful against towers and they are BETTER than heroes early on (same concept with my Conversion/Malefice). This works by conjuring a Lava Spawn and casting Cold Snap on an enemy or casting Alacrity on the Lava Spawn, but either way the damage should hurt for a short time. Use the Pushing Invoker, you can have two of these guys by level 18 and they get a range of 900 and can outshoot towers and heroes. Cast Ice Wall if needed for added support. If you want IMBA, I’d wish these guys could replicate just as they do in ladder hahaha.

Invoker Strategies

Dota Allstars Invoker

Invoking – You can’t do much before level 10 because you can’t invoke more than one spell and it takes almost all your mana to cast two/three spells. After level 10, you have two spells and these two spells are there for you to adapt to the gameplay. In other words, if you are not going to use Ice Wall then invoke something else.

Invoking is split into stages based on Invoke and Skill Build:

Level 1 (1 Invoke, 30 CD): Your most favorable spells are Chaos Meteor, Cold Snap and/or Sun Strike but Ice Wall at this stage is decent. You can get FB with Chaos Meteor when paired with a disable, it costs 200 mana but is your highest damage spell at this point of the game. Cold Snap is simply made to assist your lane buddy in harassing the hero and it costs 100 mana and has a low cooldown which makes it easy for repetitive use. Sun Strike is used simply because of its global range and is an instant nuke on opposite lanes but is very hard to land. You do not have the mana to support a combination of spells at this time so one skill is advisable, if you want to change your skill, I suggest changing it at the fountain.

Level 2 (2 Invoke, 30 CD): Additional favorable spells are Deafening Blast and/or Ghost Walk. You can now combo two spells (Refer to Skill Synergy). Deafening Blast has decent damage and Ice Wall should be easy to use because of your stat growth and items. Ice Wall is much more favorable because you can now follow it up with another spell. *You can use Ghost Walk but it would cost way too much mana.

Level 3 (2 Invoke, 15 CD): Additional favorable spells are Forge Spirit, Tornado and/or EMP. With only a cooldown of 15 seconds, it is relatively easier to use hit and run tactics with your spells.

Level 4 (2 Invoke, 05 CD): You can spam all spells as long as you have your regen items here. At level 25, you can do almost anything with the exception of not tanking. Lava Spawns are your bodyguards and your added support because they last for about a minute.

Laning – You can reach level 5 with ease by lane denying your opponents by pulling neutrals against your creeps; this works only for the Scourge Top and Sentinel Bottom. Use Quas when you need the regen (combined with Tango), Wex to move more swiftly, & Exort for last hit creeping and harassing opponents until Invoke is available. Pair up with someone who can disable for strong lane control.

Soloing – You can solo against heroes that have no disables like Shadow Fiend, Troll, or any other range carry. Exort (and possibly Quas for lane stability) is the reason for this and you can take advantage by going in mid because of the hills although risky but you can’t solo against dual nukers.

Getting Ganked – Activate Wex for the movement speed bonus after you Invoke your main spell. Your main spell is either Ghost Walk or Ice Wall but early on, Ice Wall is enough because Ghost Walk costs 300 mana to cast. If you have an ally with you, you can try to go on the offense with Deafening Blast and Cold Snap. If your ally is reliant on physical attacks, cast Alacrity on him and assist.

Ganking – You should have Invoke Level 2. Your most favorable skill is Deafening Blast to open a gank and while they are pushed back. As soon as Deafening Blast hits, you should have either EMP or Chaos Meteor as the second Invoke for more added damage. Tornado/Sun Strike should be invoked as a final maneuver. Ghost Walk or run away if necessary.

Farming – Farming is one of Invoker’s main strong points. Your strongest farming skill is Chaos Meteor plus any added nuke. If you jungle, invoke Forge Spirit for added support. For this to happen, you need Linken Sphere to continue farming efficiently. Don’t farm too much though; you should engage in ganking to earn more experience since what you are really after is level 20.

Pushing – Invoker is a good pusher and a great one when he maximizes Exort and Quas. With Forge Spirit, you can push early with your teammates. You can mow down creeps with Chaos Meteor and you can cast Ice Wall to slow down the opposition. With Deafening Blast in your arsenal, you are actually keeping your own creeps and allies alive when tower diving.

5v5 Battles (defensive) – With 10 Spells in your arsenal, you’d be giving enemies a difficult time. Ice Wall effectively annoys opponents and prevents them from doing anything beyond its border. Use two nukes to effectively kill creep waves. But as a warning, do not spam spells if Pugna and his Nether Ward are there!

5v5 Battles (offensive) – Your initiators should engage as fast as possible. As soon as they’ve done their job, it is time for you to do yours. Follow up with EMP as your first move and then Deafening Blast; rinse and repeat. If you have Guinsoo, hex the deadliest target and if possible, combine it with Cold Snap and have your teammates focus on him. Tornado any red health enemies, with its long range there should really be no problem. Cast Alacrity on your DPS hero and Ghost Walk. Ghost Walk on the offense, slows down opponents and allows your team to keep up with them. The possibilities are endless.

Fun Facts

Dota Allstars Invoker

The Blood Mage

Invoker is based off Blood Mage of normal ladder although nothing like his counterpart since Blood Mages only concentrate on fiery spells. This hero was originally classic Lina in older versions of DotA before IceFrog took over the project. It makes sense since all of Lina’s Spells were based off the Blood Mage.

His Storyline

A powerful mage himself, the young Prince Kael is a loyal agent of the Alliance who holds their part of the pact to repay the humans for saving what was left of their race after the destruction of Quel’Talas.

However, he feels like their efforts to help are being ignored, and the mistreatment for the Blood Elves is humiliating. Being left to die near Dalaran, the Prince finds himself in the decision to live by allying with the Naga, or dying alone. They join the Naga, and are trapped as traitors by the alliance.

With the help of Lady Vashj, Kael rallies his people in a daring escape from Dalaran, and joins Illidan on his quest to destroy Magtheridon, and finally the Frozen Throne.

He was very likely killed during the assault on the Frozen Throne Tower, or killed in the aftermath.

Credits & Conclusion

Dota Allstars Invoker

“Arhat” for the great headers. He’s taken much of his time just to make them and I appreciate all of his efforts.

“Baconzilla” for the great title header of Kael.

“Beast_pete” for introducing the new template.

“IceFrog and his crew” for bringing back the imba.

Hope you enjoyed reading the guide although more information could have been added but it would be totally unnecessary since you don’t have to use all his spells in a single game. Every game is different so learn, adapt, use and abuse him and I ensure that your team should not be losing.

Hero Counter Guide by ECKsO

Thursday, May 29th, 2008

Author of this great guide is ECKsO


DotA Allstars is a game with many layers of strategy, and like any well balanced game it features a paper-rock-scissors system. This guide has evolved significantly since it’s first incarnation, but has remained focused on the first decision made in every game of DotA Allstars: hero selection. This choice is often far more important than people give it credit, and can frequently make or break your team’s effectiveness over the course of the game. Taking the liberty to modify Sun Tzu’s proverb from the Art of War: “If you know both your heroes and your enemy heroes, you will come out of one hundred battles with one hundred victories.”
The first of the two major components of this time honored concept, is knowing your teams heroes. A team should be balanced, and if you and your allies choose a team of heroes that heavily leans to one end of the spectrum you are likely hindering your effectiveness. As an example, if I see an ally select Stealth Assassin and another select Bounty Hunter, it would be unwise for me to choose Nerubian Weaver or Clinkz. This is due to the fact that the opposing team will likely get a Gem or Sentry Wards to counter my allies, and I will be at a significant disadvantage from the start. The same principle applies to a majority of spell dependent heroes. If your team selects all spell casters against a competent team, you will see HoD and BKB which again, lowers your team effectiveness. In summary, know your ally heroes strengths and weaknesses and try to compensate for them in your own. In this guide you’ll see which heroes to choose.

The second part of Sun Tzu’s concept is to know your enemy. Generally speaking, DotA is balanced by having a counter-hero or item for every hero or skill/spell. Please understand that the largest factor in deciding the outcome of a DotA Allstar game is not the fact that one hero has an advantage against another, its player skill and team work. Even with a hero that is best equipped as the “counter-hero” for your enemy, you may still lose to your opponent if they have a higher skill level than yourself. By choosing your hero wisely, you are successfully approaching the first layer of strategy, but that alone will not warrant you a victory.

That said, there are cases where (all skill levels considered equal) one hero or item will have a significant advantage against a specific enemy hero. A classic example of this is Medusa against Omniknight. Her Purge ability instantly removes all of Purist’s buffs, rendering his Repel and Guardian Angel useless when she is around. Can a team with a skilled Omniknight player excel against a mediocre Medusa player? Of course, but there was always a slight advantage in base effectiveness for Medusa when teamed up against an Omniknight player.

Hero Selection

The initial minute of every game is critical for this kind of strategy. Ideally, you will want to wait to select your hero until around the 60 second mark, or until the other team has selected most of their heroes. This will leave you with at least 30 seconds to buy your starting items and get to a lane, which is more than enough for the average player. For -random games, consider a repick if you find yourself facing 2 or more of your “counter” heroes, or your team is too skewed in one direction or another. This guide is to help you know which hero to select, and what item build to begin working toward by that 60 second mark.

I understand that some people hate the idea of “counter-picking” but the fact of the matter is, it is a part of DotA and if you choose to ignore it you will often find yourself at a disadvantage. To limit the impact of this kind of strategy being used against you, you can simply play -ar or -rd games, or wait even longer to select your hero.

Without further ado, here is my current alphabetical list of heroes and their significant counters. While there are thousands of possible counter combinations of heroes and items, they all vary in effectiveness and I will attempt to capture only the best. Please feel free to add your own suggestions after you’ve read the note at the bottom of the guide.

Heroes & Their Counters

.:Dota Allstars Magin the Antimage:.

{Tiny} Tiny has one of the smallest natural mana pools in the game, which lowers the effectiveness of Magina’s Mana Break & Mana Void. Grow greatly enhances Tiny’s physical damage output, which the low health Magina is very susceptible to. Additionally, should the Anti-Mage stay and fight, Craggy Exterior causes his fast attacks to work against him as he will be stunned and damaged frequently. As usual against an Anti-Mage player, it’s usually best to unleash all of your spells early in the fight before you’ve lost the necessary mana.
{Rhasta} Like most fragile blink heroes, Magina suffers greatly from chain disables. Between Shackle (4.75 seconds), Voodoo (4 seconds) and a Guinsoo (3 seconds), you can near permanently ground him. Additionally, his Wards deal physical (piercing to be exact) damage, so his Spell Shield won’t benefit him from any of this. Especially with a teammate nearby, there’s little chance he’ll survive.
{Bane} Nightmare can set Magina up for a team kill, or allow for an easy escape from him should he attempt an ambush. Fiend’s Grip gives you (and your team) 5 seconds of free shots at him, and if you went with Necronomicon then your summons can potentially drain his mana below Void or Blink levels. Lastly, Brain Sap is an exact exchange of life and is not reduced by his Spell Shield.

.:Dota Allstar Mighul Khan the Axe avatar:.

{Ursa Warrior} Ursa is most deadly when he is allowed to land multiple consecutive hits thanks to Fury Swipes. Axe’s primary mode of operation is to force enemies to attack him, which means Ursa’s damage will surpass any Helix damage by a significant margin. Culling Blade also loses effectiveness against high health enemies, and any proficient Ursa player will mass strength/health items in mid-late game. Lastly, Helix deals physical damage and Ursa is an AGI based hero so his relatively high armor will even further reduce Axe’s damage output.
{2x Bracer} If you’ve only got 600 health, a Level 1 Culling Blade will kill you when you reach 50% health. However if you have 600 base health and 2x Bracers (~ 830 health) Axe needs to drop you to about 35% health to kill you. On some heroes, a Vitality/Soul Booster or HoT may be a better choice, but the idea here is that health boosting items render Culling Blade less effective.

.:IPB Image:.

{Bristleback} Rigwarl’s Bristleback ability passively reduces all damage that is taken from behind (including Rupture if it’s cast from behind). This fact, coupled with his run speed and slow spell makes him tough to kill… even when being chased by Strygwyr. Offensively, constant goo-spam will bring Bloodseeker to a crawl and allow you and your team to catch a fleeing BS, even with Thirst activated.
{Enchantress} Few heroes work as well as Enchantress as a defensive counter to Bloodseeker. If Ruptured, Wisps greatly aids in her survivability while she stands there waiting out the duration of the spell. Bloodseeker’s attacks are few and far between against her thanks to Untouchable, and her Enchant spell can save her or her ally’s life when being chased with Thirst. Lastly, Impetus is an amazing early game harassment tool against him to keep his levels down.

Bounty Hunter
.:IPB Image:.

{Doombringer} Doom’s ultimate not only prevents Wind Walk and Shuriken, it actually nullifies Jinada throughout the duration of the spell. This means no crits, no dodge, no stealth-escape, and without those traits Bounty Hunter will fall quickly to your LVL? and Doom. *See “Stealth Heroes” for more counters.*

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{Axe} Berserker’s Call forces Rigwarl to face Axe throughout the duration which allows your team to land their spells/attacks against his front, making his Bristleback ability less effective. Also, Culling Blade is not effected by the Bristleback. (To give you an idea of how powerful that is, a late-game 600 hp fleeing Rigwarl would require ~1,400 worth of spell damage from behind to kill, versus a single Culling Blade from Axe.) Lastly, Axe is difficult to chase with Rigwarl as his attacks are fast causing multiple Helixes, which he takes from the front.

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{Juggernaut} Yunero’s bladefury allows him to not only escape the damage & slow of a rot-chase, but it also damages Pudge as long as he tries to chase. Pudge’s hooks most often come from secluded locations (in the woods, up a cliff, etc.) which basicaly just set him up for a full damage Omnislash if Jugg can survive the Dismember (not too difficult if you manage your hp carefully).
{Doombringer} If Doom is cast on Pudge while he has Rot on, it will prevent him from turning it off for the full duration of the spell. This can easily total over 2,000 damage without a Scepter, though you may not get the kill if the last damage dealt is from his Rot. Additionally, Luci’s large strength gain means he will have more than enough health to survive the Hook->Rot->Dismember combo mid-late game.

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{Lord of Avernus} Abaddon’s ultimate will remove Doom when he reaches 400 health, which severely limits Doom to when he can cast his ultimate effectively. Abaddon’s Frostmourne helps to counter Scorched Earth when chasing, and his shield provides excellent lane harassment against a melee hero like Luci.
{Tide Hunter} Kraken Shell periodically removes negative buffs, including Doom, and it is a passive ability to boot. Currently, a level 4 Kraken Shell removes negative buffs every 8 seconds, which means on average you will only take 4 seconds worth of damage. Doom’s speed buff from Scorched Earth is also countered by his Gush spell which has a decent slow.

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{Silencer} Earthshaker is one of the few non-INT based heroes that rely on the power of multiple spells being fired off in quick succession. Putting a 4 second delay in between his spells royally screws him over in both 1v1 and team battles. A well timed Global Silence can prevent his ultimate from wrecking your team as soon as you see him charge in. As a bonus, a kill with Glaives of Wisdom will steal one of his already few INT points… and your ranged advantage makes laning against him easy. I’d suggest at least one point in Curse for early game harassment as keeping his mana low will prevent Fissure spam/blockage.

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{Tinker} Enchantress fairs well against heroes that deal steady physical damage, thanks to her heal over time and her physical attack speed reduction. On the other side of the coin, her low health and lack of an instant-heal make her weak to heavy spell casters. Tinker is famous for his potentially endless onslaught of high damage nukes… especially when coupled with a Dagon. Some harassment and a launch of his Laser and Missiles in quick succession can end her before she can even click her Nature’s Attendants.
{Nerubian Assassin} NA breaks the mold as Enchantress usually does well against melee heroes, but his primary source of damage is his three active abilities. As with Tinker, near instant burst damage makes NA an amazing counter, and the damage output from Vendetta->Mana Burn->Impale will be more than she can handle early-mid game. What sets NA apart from other nukers is that his Mana Burn wrecks Enchantress as her spells are relatively costly (Nature’s Attendant’s is 170 mana at level 4). The key is to keep Mana Burn at level 1 and spam it whenever you see her get close to 40-55 mana to prevent Impetus harassment when laning against her.

Faceless Void
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{Mangix} Panda is one of the best late-game perma-bash counters in the game, as his Drunken Haze can be coupled with his passive Drunken Brawler to achieve a dodge rating of ~80%. Faceless Void’s effectiveness is almost entirely dependent on being able to land his attacks and Mangix takes that away from him.

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{Axe} Meepo and his three low-health clones simply give Axe 4 times the number of Helixes and a good selection of Culling Blade targets. You are almost guaranteed 3 helixes during your 3 second Berserker’s Call, coupled with a few normal attacks and you’ll have easily done 700+ damage to one of his clones. Culling Blade and watch the other 3 Meepos fall to the ground.
{Doombringer} We know Doom serves as a counter to many heroes, but it’s so easy to kill a Meepo clone it’s almost silly. With Aghanim’s Scepter, a LvL ? and Doom will kill a clone guaranteed, even if Meepo’s running around with a Mek. Killing him before you’ve gotten a Scepter is still so easy it’s almost not any fun… almost.
{Earthshaker} All of Eartshaker’s spells can have a point blank AoE stun associated with them, allowing him to keep Meepo and his clones locked down for several seconds while you focus on single target. Finishing with his ultimate causes his clones to take bonus damage from each other and his Fissure is also great for sniping low health Meepos on the run.
{Lich} Aside from his excellent early-game harassment against melee heroes, Lich’s ultimate requires multiple heroes to reach full effectiveness. Meepo is multiple heroes. Also, Lich’s Frost Armor works very well against his multiple attackers.
{Dagon} This certainly doesn’t go for every hero in the game, but many heroes can make good use of a Dagon against Meepo. While usually considered a sub-par item, focus firing your spells on a single clone and finishing with a Dagon can be an effective way of killing Geomancer.

Goblin Techies
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{Image Heroes} If you’ve played as Techies before, you know how frustrating it can be to burn 5 Remote Mines on an image. Heroes like PL, Silithice and Terrorblade can make it difficult for Techies to decide when and where to detonate their mines. Regular mines can be cleared by simply sending the image into their vicinity, and this applies to Statis Traps as well.
{Gem} Techies is nothing without his invisible mines and traps. While it helps to avoid damage on Melee heroes, they really can’t do anything to get rid of the hazards. Thus, ranged heroes make better use of the item as they can destroy the mines and traps without consequence.
{Sentry Wards} Especially early game, these wards will make it much easier to lane against him. Through last-hitting and denying, try to keep the combat location of the creeps in range of your ward so that one ward at a time will suffice.
{Necronomicon} An item that grants vision of mines, extra health to survive them, and mana burn? Sounds like a custom tailored-item against Techies. Not all, but many heroes can use this much more effectively than a Gem or Wards so consider it an option.

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{Anti-Mage} Magina’s Mana Break passive drops Medusa’s mana shield and health faster than any other melee attack. Magina’s Mana Void ultimate can then be used to the fullest potential. When slowed by Purge, Magina has Blink to escape or catch up in a chase.
{Nerubian Assassin} NA’s level 4 mana burn may only do 100 damage to her with her mana shield on, but it will burn almost 325 mana every time it’s cast. With a such a fast cooldown, her mana pool can be depleted very quickly. She has relatively low health so once her mana’s gone, just perform the usual Vendetta->Impale combo for the kill.

Holy Knight
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{Enchantress} The Enchant ability can be used to instantly convert one of Chen’s creeps to fight for her, essentially making Chen do the hard work of creeping for stompers for her. Additionally, Enchantress provides similar healing abilities to her team (especially when coupled with Mekansm) which will offset the effectiveness of his healing spells for his team.
{Hand of Midas} This almost needs no explanation, but Midas allows you to instantly kill one of Chen’s creeps… which are usually high gold value creeps to begin with.
{Helm of the Dominator} This item works like Enchantress’ Enchant ability, allowing you to instantly convert one of Chen’s creeps to an ally. Be warned that Chen can simply re-convert the creep if the cooldown is ready, but you can definitely turn the tides by using his own stomper against him.

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{Omniknight} Purist has Guardian Angel to not only counter Omnislash for himself, but for his whole team. Juggernaut’s melee attacks require he be in range for Purify damage, and Degen Aura helps prevent Bladefury chasing. Bladefury is also magic damage, so one point in Repel is enough to last the full duration, allowing you to whack on him without his AoE DPS chewing on your health bar.
{Blink Heroes} Juggernaut has no way of dealing with Blink heroes. Both his Omnislash and his Bladefury require the enemy to stay within range of his attacks, and he has no means of disable on them.

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{Nerubian Assassin} Few heroes can go toe-to-toe with Lich in an early game lane, and the real downside to Mana Burn is that often times it will drain all of the opponent’s mana… ceasing to do damage. Lich however has an endless supply with his Dark Ritual, and Mana Burn’s low mana cost and cooldown allow you to spam it indefinitely. As soon as you see Dark Ritual cast, follow up with an immediate Mana Burn and you’ll keep Lich in check. Mid-Late game, should you be caught in a bad situation with Lich’s ultimate creeping toward you, simply Vendetta to dodge it and finish the low hp hero off.

Life Stealer
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{Medusa} Mana Shield prevents N’aix from leeching health. Early game use of Chain Lightning and ranged harass can keep him at a level deficit. Her Purge slows him to the point that she can escape even when under his Open Wounds ability.
{Silithice’s} Her Net goes through Rage, and his life leech does not work on her images. Splitting into her images removes his Open Wounds, and with her superior DPS she should have no problem taking him down at any point in the game, especially in 1v1 situations.

Lone Druid
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{Lich} The Lich is often chosen as a counter for Syllabear for several reasons. First, Nova Spam while laning against him is an excellent harassment, and it can hit both Sylla and his pet. Second, Sylla virtually always has his pet with him, providing two targets to bounce his ultimate between. The bear will usually have more health than Sylla so you should either get the maximum number of bounces, or a dead Syllabear as long as there are no creeps around. Third, Lich’s frost armor significantly slows down his pet’s attack speed mid-late game, providing for fewer Entangles.
{Bane} Nightmare lasts longer on Sylla’s pet than it does on heroes, making it a good target for the spell. Sleeping the bear allows his Fiend’s Grip to last it’s full duration without worry. Brain Sap can nullify any early-game bear harassment that Sylla may attempt. Enfeeble is also a great counter to Rabid on his bear.
{Crystal Maiden} Frostbite’s duration is the same at all levels against Sylla’s pet, and the damage remains constant so a single point in Frostbite will do ~700 damage to his pet and immobilize it for 10 seconds. Sylla’s only form of channel-interrupt is Entangle, and with his bear in Frostbite you can cast your ultimate with nothing to fear.

Lord of Avernus
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{Necrolyte} Reaper Scythe is one of the few spells that can pierce through Abaddon’s ultimate, assuming he has lost enough health for the spell to kill him. Death Pulse spam gives Necro the much needed survivability when laning against Avernus or running from him. One Pulse will destroy his shield and heal you for half the damage it does. The 5 second cooldown on Pulse (compared to 23 seconds on Shield) and your ranged attacks will ensure that your health is always greater than his. When he’s running around with 4k health late-game, just wait until your team gets him to 40% and end him with a single Scythe.
{Lion} As with the above counters, Lion also has the potential to kill Avernus through his Borrowed Time as his Finger of Death spell (starting at lvl 2) will do enough damage to prevent activating it. The catch is to used his Impale+Vodoo when he reaches the 600-700 health range, and then finish him off with Finger before he can activate his Apothic Shield. This requires excellent timing, but his two disables (three with Guinsoo’s) serve as a great way to hold him while your team brings him to a suitable level to finish him off. Lastly, his mana drain keeps Abaddon from spamming his Apothic Sheild during early game. (Lina’s ultimate works as well, but she lacks the disables & mana drain which are crucial)

Lord of Olympia
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{Pugna} A well placed Netherward will completely dominate a spell-spamming Zeus. His mana will not regen and he will damage himself with every spell he casts. Put some thought into your ward placement, as it will make or break your gameplay. The ward should be placed close enough to keep him in the AoE, and yet far enough behind you and/or your creeps to force him to enter into a dangerous position should he attempt to destroy it.
{Keeper of the Light} Mana Leak will cause Zeus to lose 80% of his mana should he cast any spell within that 22 second buff window. While KotL has this advantage against most spell-reliant heroes, Zeus is the definition of “spell spammer” and is absolutely useless without his spells.

Moon Rider
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{Abaddon} Borrowed Time, coupled with Apothic Shield, act as an excellent counter to Eclipse. He should wait until Luna uses her ultimate to cast his (and shield) and will take damage for the first hit, but will heal for the shield damage and remain unscathed for the rest of it. Once her ultimate has been used, Frostmourne and Abaddon’s fast movespeed will allow him to keep up with her.
{Clinkz} All Wind Walk heroes have an excellent counter to Luna’s ultimate, however Clinkz takes the cake against Luna. Like Bounty Hunter, Clinkz’s cooldown on his Wind Walk is lower than it’s duration, so he can break stealth to attack and immediately re-stealth once she ultimates. He far excels above BH in lane control with his orb attack for harassment and he will be far enough back not to be hit by Moon Glaive. Luna’s movespeed is 320, which is significantly above average. Clinkz however can match and exceed that easily by mid game making him one of the few that can actually chase her. Finally, Searing Arrows and Strafe wreck Luna’s low HP from mid game on.
{Templar Assassin} Lanya has several advantages over Luna throughout the game. Obviously her Meld work like wind-walk as an effective counter to Eclipse, with the added bonus damage/armor reduction attack when its over. Her traps also work wonderfully against Luna’s insane movement speed when chasing/fleeing. Finally, Refraction will absorb the first few Eclipse beams while you reach for your Meld key, and also functions as early game anti-harassment from Lucent Beams.

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{Bane} Enfeeble reduces damage based on stats by 120% at level 4, making Bane an amazing counter to Morph’s high agility damage output. Also, Bane serves as a poor hero to Replicate so don’t have to worry about his ultimate too much.

Naga Siren
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{Magnataur} Naga is relatively weak without her images helping her out, and a decent Mag player can ensure that all of her clones are taken out quick and easy. This is done through the low mana cost on the now spammable Shockwave, and the ease at which Reverse Polarity can grab Naga and all her images after she net-surrounds you. Cleave and Shockwave are often enough to kill her images before she’s even unstunned from his ultimate.

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{Enchantress} This has probably been the most hotly debated counter in the thread, so I’m going to post it here with a disclaimer that you may or may not agree with the suggestion. Impetus works as a good counter-harassment to Viper’s Poison Sting when in a lane against each other. Viper’s lack of burst damage allows her Wisps the time needed to do their thing, and the slow from her Enchant ability is on par with his Poison Sting.

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{Morphling} Pugna will have a hard time against an equally skilled Morphling, as Pugna’s Life Drain is interrupted by Waveform. On top of that, Morph is not affected by Nether Ward when using his Waveform. Pugna doesn’t have much health to begin with, and even if he has a BKB and Scepter, his ultimate is useless on Morphling.

Obsidian Destroyer
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{Pugna} Nether Ward works wonders against high mana cost, spammable spells, and Obsidian Destroyer fits that description. His primary orb attack has no cooldown and costs 100 mana per cast (ward deals 150 damage in return). The sweetest part is that his ultimate costs 300/500/700 mana (ward deals 450,750,1050 damage in return), and with Pugna’s +4 INT per level compared to his +2.8 INT, Pugna will likely be unaffected by his Sanity’s Eclipse. Again, proper ward placement is a must and it would be wise to only use Life Drain after you’ve seen Astral cast on someone so as not to interrupt your drain.

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{Gorgon} Omni relies on three abilities to remain effective in battle: Degen Aura, Repel & Guardian Angel. Gorgon’s Purge removes both Repel and GA, which renders his usual god-like survivability down to nothing. His Degen Aura is useful in chasing down enemies or running from them, however his 28% speed reduction is NOTHING in comparison to the 80% reduction from Purge. 5 seconds is more than enough time to catch up to (or run away from) an Omni player.
{Diffusal Blade} In the same way Gorgon’s Purge can make Omni’s life hell, Diffusal Blade’s purge does the same thing. While not necessarily a good choice on all heroes, many heroes can make use of the mana burn and Manta Style later in the game.

Phantom Assassin
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{Doombringer} It seems that most people don’t realize that Doom not only prevents Shadow Strike and Blink Strike, it prevents both Coup de Grace and Blur passives throughout the duration of the spell. This means no crits, no dodge, no blink-escapes, and no slow spell. Without those traits, the fragile Mortred fall quickly to your LVL? and Doom.
{Nerubian Assassin} Mortred is one of the lowest health heroes in the game, and she is extremely weak against chain nuking. NA brings one of the highest damage nuke combos to the table once he hits level 6. Doesn’t he have this advantage against most low hp heroes? Yes, but she is rare in that she has no real disable and no real escape mechanism. Also, the best defense against her critical strikes is a high armor count, and Spiked Carcapace does the trick well for mid-late game. Granted, it doesn’t return critical strike damage, but it will help in survivability.

Phantom Lancer
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{Axe} We know that Axe performs best with many weaker enemies attacking him, and this is the very nature of the Phantom Lancer. In addition to the surplus of Helixes, Berserker’s Call will force PL out of his Dopplewalk should he get caught in the AoE. Care should be taken when using Culling Blade however, as it sucks to find you wasted it on an image.
{Earthshaker} Echo Slam is amplified by each target it hits, including images. This can add up to a serious death toll if PL is walking around with 6+ images. However, most PL players will go for Manta Style which burns mana, so use your ultimate early to get rid of the images and make good use of your stuns.
{Bloodseeker} Strygwyr’s passive works on images (though only granting 20% of the hero’s health) which he can shred through like butter. Killing 2-3 of PL’s images should bring him to near full health every time. In addition, once Bloodthirst activates he can chase and auto-attack PL even after he’s Wind Walked away, partially nullifying that ability. Radiance is also a common item on BS, which works wonders against his images and clues you in on the real one.
{AoE Heroes} As many have pointed out, PL’s images are large in numbers but fall very quickly to AoE spells and attacks. Heroes like Magnataur with Cleave/Shockwave and those like Pugna with Nether Blast can make quick work of his images… which account for 3 of his 4 skills.
{Radiance} Many heroes that can farm relatively well and lack an AoE ability can use a Radiance to chew through PL’s images in no time. Forget trying to attack each image in search of the real hero, Radiance will make it quite obvious by which one is taking the least AoE damage. The evasion doesn’t hurt against a melee hero like him either.

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{Anti-Mage} No way, Anti-Mage is good against an INT hero? Really? Furion is utterly screwed in comparison to other INT heros when facing Magina… especially mid-late game. Magina’s blink (and all other blinkers) renders Furion’s Sprout spell useless, and his ultimate will do reduced damage to Magina thanks to his Spell Shield. Even his teleport can be interrupted by Magina’s Mana Void, making him the ultimate counter to Furion.
{Priestess of the Moon} Like blink, leap nullifies Furion’s Sprout, and Elune’s Arrow will cancel his teleport. Starfall helps to counter his treant summon pushes as well.
{Spirit Breaker} As with the above counters, there is nothing Furion can do to stop this hero from killing him. His Nether Strike allows him to “blink” out of a Sprout and his Charge allows him to close the distance on him quite easily. Finally, his bashes keep him from Teleporting out of the situation.
{Tangoes} Sprout plays a huge part of Furion’s gameplay, and for a few gold coins you can nullify it with any hero. Be sure to eat a “side” tree, as the other “corner” trees may or may not let you out.

Queen of Pain
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{Anti-Mage} Magina does well against most INT heroes, but very few heroes can keep up with QoP and her ability to blink. She can’t really be played as a physical damage dealer, and all 3 of her offensive abilities are magic damage which is reduced by Spell Shield. Her blink can be countered by a good Magina player, and her short duration slow from Shadow Strike is not very effective against Magina’s already high base movespeed.
{Silencer} As previously stated, QoP has 4 active spells to choose from and the vast majority of her damage stems from their use. Last Word aura will passively prevent her from being able to Blink in and unleash 3 damage spells (and slow) instantly, and blink out. With a 4 second delay between casts, it would take her 12+ seconds to get off all 3 spells and be able to blink out. During that time Nortrom’s Glaives will wreck her low HP with little problem.
{Keeper of the Light} While more of a defensive counter, KotL can render QoP useless mid-late game. One should not solo as KotL against her early game, and when paired with a spell-spamming ally Chakra can keep her underleveled quite easily. Mana Leak should be gotten early, and your fingers should always be ready to hotkey it when she blinks in.

Rogue Knight
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{Gorgon} The spell that makes Sven so powerful is his God’s Strength ability. Medusa’s Purge removes the buff instantly. Sven also lacks a natural escape mechanism, so Purge can set him up for an easy two-man gank. Also, lacking any real damage output without God’s Strength means he will have a hell of a time chewing through Mana Shield.
{Omniknight} Like Purge, even one point in Repel will remove God’s Strength from Sven, not to mention Guardian Angel which renders his team immune to Sven’s primary form of damage: physical attacks.
{Diffusal Blade} Having a Diffusal is like having a mini-Gorgon in your pocket that you can pull out and Purge with. It comes with 10 chances to remove Sven’s God’s Strength and slow him to a crawl. As with the hero counters, Sven simply sucks without his DPS boost.

Sacred Warrior
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{Necrolyte} It’s only fitting that his greatest ally is his worst enemy. Reaper’s Scythe coupled with his Life Break can almost instantly kill any hero, regardless of how much health they have amassed. However, his ultimate and his tendency to run around at half-health (to get the full bonus of his Berserker’s Blood) make him a sitting duck for Necro’s ultimate.

Sand King
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{Juggernaut} The Blademaster does not take Epicenter damage and is unaffected by Impale when he is in Blade Fury, so it’s an easy “out” should he find himself in that situation. His ultimate, Omnislah, also has a “ministun” effect on the first slash so it will stop SK’s channeling ult if timed correctly. If your opponent is foolish enough to use Sandstorm, simply stand right on top of him and Bladefury, you will take no damage and he will suffer the full duration of your spell. It’s advised to get a gem or carry some wards if you see SK use Sandstorm, because it will interrupt your Omnislash if he goes underground.
{Silencer} Another hotly debated counter… Sand King’s play style is often compared to Earthshaker’s, as they are both STR heroes that depend on multiple spells being fired off in quick succession. Silencer has the ability to passively prevent the infamous Impale>Epicenter combo and can effectively use his Global Silence to prevent it at any other time… even from across the map. Finally, his Glaives steal that precious +1 INT from Sand King’s already low INT stat pool upon death.

Skeleton King
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{Anti-Mage} Magina’s Mana Break ability can help reduce Leoric’s mana below his Reincarnation threshold, rendering his ultimate useless. Just make sure you don’t go for the kill until you drop his mana below the 100/150/200 mana count. Leoric is often a high damage output hero late-game, and if you don’t go Bashers, it’s suggested you have a teammate hold him in place while you burn his mana. Your primary role is to waste his mana, so even if he tosses a Storm Bolt at you and you blink away, you’ve succeeded in lowering his mana by that much more.
{Nerubian Assassin} Similarly, NA can use his Mana Burn ability to achieve the same effect. However in his case, Spiked Carcapace helps reduce Skeleton King’s damage output, as well as returning some of the damage to himself. It’s easy to set up a gank with Vendetta, and two Mana Burns should be enough to bring him below the threshold of Reincarnation.
{Manta Style} Again, while not the best item for every hero, there are some heroes that can use it well and it works wonders against Skeleton King’s low mana pool. Phantom Lancer, Naga, Chaos Knight, etc. are among the many that can burn away his mana in a matter of seconds.

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{Pugna} If Lina casts her maxed Laguna Blade in the presence of Pugna’s Netherward, she will deal 950 damage (713 reduced) and receive 1020 damage (765 reduced) from the ward. That’s over 100% damage return instantly. If she tags on another spell or two and she will kill herself in a matter of seconds. As with all Pugna suggestions, ward placement is key to the success of this counter. Wards should be far enough away to prevent easy killing of the unit, but close enough to keep your enemies in range.

Spirit Breaker
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{Centaur} The Return skill damage is doubled against Spirit Breaker. This is because his bonus damage from Empowering Haste is done through a second (instant) attack. Every time Spirit Breaker swings his lanterns he will take 100 damage in return, instead of the usual 50. A Vanguard will show the results more clearly as it will drastically reduce the damage you take while he will get hurt for the damage you blocked in full.
{Tidehunter} Kraken Shell removes 40 damage per hit against him, and like Centaur’s Return it will act twice against SB. Every attack SB makes can be reduced by a whopping 80 damage against Tidehunter, and that doesn’t take into account armor reduction. Additionally, Ravage can be used to stop SB’s Charge of Darkness and his Nether Strike if cast at the right time. Gush also helps to counter SB’s imba movespeed when chasing.

Stealth Assassin
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{Bristleback} Rigwarl’s Bristleback passive ability heavily reduces all damage taken from behind, which is where SA wants to attack from most often. This reduction applies to Backstab damage as well. Quills can be spammed while being chased and Bristleback will also shoot quills which will stack and wear on your chaser. Lastly, Goo can keep SA in your warded area longer and allow you and your team to finish him quick with the stacked armor reduction. *See “Stealth Heroes” for more counters.*

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{Lion} Terrorblade hates two things, large burst damage, and stuns/disables. The burst damage found in Lion’s Impale and Finger of Death can be used to get TB below his Sunder threshold before he can activate it. The stun from Impale or the disable from Voodoo interrupt him from using his Soul Steal to heal. Lastly, his Conjure Image and Metamorphosis are quite mana intensive, so Mana Drain can work to your advantage.
{Slayer} Lina also has a stun and an arsenal of burst damage. TB must remain still to use his Soul Steal, making him an easy target for a Light Strike Array.
{Necrolyte} Terrorblade’s ultimate requires him to be at <50% health to be useful offensively. This puts him in a dangerous situation when around a Necro player has Reaper’s Scythe can finish him off (or simply drop him below the required health to even cast his Sunder). While he doesn’t have an ability to interrupt Soul Steal when laning against each other, his Death Pulse has a shorter cool down and can be used as soon as TB is done to keep him at low health.

Tormented Soul
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{Anti-Mage} Magina excels against most INT heroes, but Leshrac is at the top of his food list. Aside from the fact that all of Leshrac’s damage is reduced by Spell Shield, most TS players will stockpile on mana so as to allow longer Pulse Nova durations. Pulse Nova drains heavy amounts of mana while turned on, and it’s possible to get Mana Void damage into the 1.5k damage range against him.
{Keeper of the Light} The Mana Leak ability shines against heroes with massive mana pools, and a reliance on spells for damage output. In this case, TS fits both of those. While Mana Leak works effectively against most INT heroes, few will have a mana pool as large as his.

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{Silithice} She can simply cast Mirror Image to remove two of Veno’s primary skills: Poison Nova and Shadow Strike. Additionally, her net allows her crits and images to make quick work of low health AGI heroes like Venomancer. If her Mirror Image is on cooldown, she can always sleep after a Nova and allow her and her team to get away to safety.
{Tidehunter} Venomancer’s damage over time spells are periodically (and passively) removed from Tidehunter through his Kraken Shell. Veno also lacks an escape mechanism from Gush or Ravage.
{Lord of Avernus} Apothic Shield nullifies Shadow Strike as soon as it’s activated, on both Abaddon or his ally. When Veno’s ultimate is used, a Shield and Borrowed Time should leave you unharmed, with potentially more health than when it started. These things work better against Veno than most heroes because his damage is dealt over time, which allows more time for you to react and cast your Shield & Time.
{Nerubian Weaver} Venomancer lacks any burst damage, allowing Weaver plenty of time to hit his Time Lapse and remove every DoT Veno has. Nova has a much longer cooldown than Time Lapse, and Shukuchi + Geminate help Weaver establish lane control over Veno, who has the upper hand against most heroes. It should also be noted that a well timed Shukuchi can dodge a Shadow Strike projectile from Veno.
{Manta Style} In a similar fashion to Silithice listed above, Manta Style works well on many heroes as a quick way to remove all of Veno’s powerful damage over time spells.

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{Diffusal Blade} Heroes that can make use of this item (and Manta Style) can really piss off a Warlock player. 10 insta-kills of his summoned Infernal will also net you a respectable amount of gold in the process… almost making the item pay for itself if you use all the charges.
-I do NOT consider Gorgon a “strong” counter… Purge only deals 600 damage now which is still considerable against a level 1 Infernal, but when I sa

Categorical Counters (Special Cases)
When the opposing team selects a majority of one of these categories:

INT Heroes
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{Anti-Mage} This one may be obvious, but for thoroughness I have included it. Magina is called the “anti-mage” for a reason, every skill he has gives him an advantage over INT heroes. He’s often a good choice when faced with a majority of INT heroes on the opposing team.
{Silencer} Like AM, Silencer is also designed to counter heavy spell casters. If you’re against a majority of INT heroes that rely on firing off spells in quick succession (Lion, Lina, Tinker, Crystal Maiden, etc.), consider Silencer your best team player. His mana pool will be largely unused mid-late game, so consider a Mekansm to further counter the enemies AoE spells against your team.
{Pugna} Netherward is one of the best spells to use against INT based enemies. The AoE is huge, which lets the spell especially shine in team battles when spells are flying left and right. Constant draining of every enemies mana also helps in those prolonged team skirmishes. -Contributed by Harby
{Black King Bar} As with Anti-Mage, I almost feel this should go without saying… but an item that provides limited spell invulnerability works well against spell casters. If just one noob reads this and learns that’s what it’s for then it was worth it… right?
{Hood of Defiance} With an extra 30% magic resistance on top of your inherent 25%, you’ll be cutting all magic damage by more than half. The two RoR required to build it help out early game when trying to hold a lane against a nuker as well.
{Orchid Malevolence} While mostly an item for INT heroes, it provides a nice 5 second silence to a single target in addition to 20% damage amplification. Works as a great interrupt item for those channeling ultimates that could destroy your team in a big battle.

STR Heroes
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{Necrolyte} Reaper Scythe does damage based on a percentage of health remaining, which means it can actually do more damage to enemies with large health pools. If your team is facing a 4k-HP Centaur player, you only need to do ~2.4k damage for a Scythe kill, instead of the full 4,000 damage.
{Terrorblade} Similarly, the Sunder ability also does damage based on a percentage of health, meaning the more (maximum) health his enemy has, the larger the potential to do damage is. TB’s worst enemies are those that can do large bursts of damage (mostly INT heroes) and excells against steady DPS heroes (i.e. most STR heroes).
{Huskar} Again, his ultimate is percentage based and does more damage when the target has more health. He to is a STR hero so he shouldn’t have a problem going toe-to-toe with his enemy well into the late-game.

Melee Heroes
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{Nerubian Assassin} For 4 skill points and an easy 3540g, NA can have 80% melee damage return, +30 attack damage, and +18 armor through a few Blade Mails. The armor boost translates into alot of effective health for such a low HP hero. Note that it does not return critical strike damage, but for the most part your opponents will lose health much faster than you in any skirmish.
{Tiny} Craggy Exterior makes it difficult for melee characters to chase or kill Tiny easily. Melee means they have to be in Toss range to attack him, and should any of his opponents attempt a stun lock build, he can act as an effective counter against them.
{Enchantress} Untouchable makes her… well… simply untouchable… when faced with melee characters, as it slows their base attack speed by up to 90%. Additionally, the healing effect of her Nature’s Attendants works best when she takes steady damage (i.e. melee attacks), and not sudden burst damage (i.e. nukes). To top it all off, she is a ranged hero which gives her a large harassment edge when in a lane against melee opponents.
{Axe} One of my personal favorites, Axe is the bane of all melee heroes. This is especially true for low damage and high attack speed heroes, or melee heroes with relatively low strength gain (for easy Culling Blades). Once a Vanguard has been made, Helix will almost always ensure you’re doing more damage than they are and Berserker’s Call maintains it’s utility in team battles through the entire course of the game. -Contributed by mastershan
{Netherdrake} I don’t care what hero you choose, you will have a tough time laning against Viper. This is especially true for melee heroes. However, what makes Viper such a pain is the fact that he can orbwalk slow and kite you across the map. The insane attack speed reduction from Corrosive Skin, Poison Attack and Viper Strike does apply to ranged heroes, but at least they can nuke from a distance. Most melee heroes are dead in the water. -Contributed by Guyoverthere07
{Blade Mail} Assuming you’re not facing alot of heroes with critical strike passives, one or two Blade Mails can help bolster your armor and raise your effective DPS.

Stealth Heroes
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{Slardar} Every stealth hero is serverely weakened when their ability to ambush and escape easily is taken away. Slardar’s ultimate keeps them from using Wind Walk or Invisibility, at very low mana cost to him and with fast cooldown. On top of this, stealthers are usually chasers, but against Slardar they are often the ones being chased with his Sprint, stun, slow and bash abilities. Amplify Damage also reduces the high-armor count on agility heroes up to 15.
{Bounty Hunter} A stealther to counter stealthers? It’s all about Track, which not only allows him to see Rikimaru, Clinkz, Rooftrellan or those Lothar’s users, but gives him the movement speed to keep up with them while he chases them down… the bonus gold and armor reduction are just icing on the cake. Jinada crits work wonders on the low HP heroes and the evade grants him considerable effective HP against their high damage output. -Contributed by disrup3
{Bloodseeker} Bloodrage will prevent them from stealthing in the first place, but at the effect of giving them a huge damage increase so make sure it’s only cast if you know your team can finish them quickly. Also, if any of the stealthers drop below the 40% health mark, Bloodthirst activates and you will be able to continue to chase/auto-attack them (even though you can’t visibly see him on the screen). -Contributed by Genosis and disrup3
{Spiritbreaker} Aside from being able to tank their damage, his Charge of Darkness will give you and your whole team vision of the stealth hero from the second you cast it (even from across the map) until the moment of impact. It’s important that your team tries to finish off the stealther as soon as possible because your opponent can re-stealth after you’ve landed your stun. -Contributed by techplore
{Gem} Another item that should go without saying… but with the changes to Aegis, it becomes a much more difficult item to hold on to. Your team should put this item on the hardest to kill hero (Abaddon, Morphling, etc.) until one of you recieves an Aegis from Roshan. The hero that has the Aegis should carry it until he loses the charge.
{Sentry Wards} Recently nerfed, they still serve as an excellent counter to stealth heroes. Better used defensively, and placed in gank spots early game, or in locations of high traffic during mid-late game.
{Level 3 Necro Book} Not everyone benefits from the book the same, but many heroes can make good use of it. If your facing stealthers, and you have any form of channeling spells, then this item should be a no brainer as reveals hidden enemies and it boosts your DPS while you channel.

The exception to the rule…
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Doombringer is unique in that his ultimate is really the “king of all counters” when you look at things the way we are for the purposes of this guide. Doom silences virtually every spell, skill and item that the target hero has… making it one of the most potent abilities in the game. Instead of making this already long guide even longer by listing him alongside every hero, I am simply providing a link to Guyoverthere’s Guide to Lucifer which has a detailed list of what Doom silences.


If you’ve gotten to this point, I salute you. The guide contains a significant amount of information, but a game like DotA has enough strategy in it to keep the fan base interested and this topic is an extensive one. A big “thanks” to all who have contributed, molded, and shaped the guide into what it is today. Remember, your individual skill and ability to work as a team will always have the most significant impact on your game… but knowing yourself, and knowing your enemies are the key to starting a game off right.


The following forum members provided input to make the guide what it is today:
AmericanDeagle, angryrabbit2, Blaow, Boogiepop!, Chameleon12, disco_john, Dky, EndJ)Storm(, freak_, Genosis, GeraX, harby, Heavens Knight, Himura_Kenshin, jacky817, n00bermicro, neosquad, nukeme!, nwfxyz, peter_tobbermon, physics223, Sick_of_it_all, sp00n, Tfiws dna eliga & usgroup1.

The following forum members have each provided multiple suggestions that made it into the guide and their continued support has been greatly appreciated:
AzureDrag0n1, disrup3, Guyoverthere07, M. E. Winstead, Macmac1990, MrBurninat0r, PieMonger, The Lobotomist, X@!n

Abbreviated Changelog

v4.1 – 4/21/2008 – Minor update to a few things I missed.

- Removed Beastmaster as counter to Furion (axes no longer cut down his trees)
- Added Juggernaut as a counter to Pudge
- Updated Bane’s enfeeble against Morphling (from 80% to 120% reduction)

v4.0 – 3/25/2008 – Major overhaul to update to current version of DotA:

- Removed Dagger of Escape from most entries as it can no longer be used as a reliable escape method
- Added Axe as a counter to Bristleback
- Removed Spectre as a counter to Pudge (Dispersion no longer has a mini-stun)
- Removed PotM as a counter to Enigma (Black Hole now silences her Leap)
- Added Pandaren Brewmaster as a counter to Faceless Void
- Added Earthshaker & Lich as counters to Meepo
- Removed Drow as a counter to Chen (Her ultimate no longer insta-kills his creeps)
- Removed most of N’aix’s counters as he has been completely remade in recent versions.
- Removed Axe as a counter to Abaddon (Axe simply can’t tank his Apothic Sheild spam early game)
- Added Lanya as a counter to Luna
- Added Enchantress as the potential counter to Viper
- Added Spiritbreaker as a counter to Furion
- Added Necrolyte as a counter to Huskar
- Re-added Silencer as a counter to Sand King
- Added Necrolyte as a counter to Terrorblade
- Removed Obsidian Destroyer as a counter to Warlock (his orb no longer deals bonus damage to the Infernal)
- Added Hood of Defiance as a counter to INT heroes
- Added Huskar as a counter to STR heroes

v3.0 – 5/23/2007 – Edited with minor format revision and updated Preface.
v2.0 – 4/11/2007 – Edited with major format revision & removal of several “weak” counters.
v1.0 – 2/1/2007 – Guide posted in it’s original form.