Sunday, April 17, 2016

Too much carry? Build these items...

Updated for 7.05

If your dota 2 pub team drafts yet another carry hero, you should abandon the typical item build patterns for your hard-carry hero, and focus on items that will allow you to be effective earlier in the game.  Most of the builds shown in the in-game list assume you have a balanced team, with supports that will get you through the early and mid-game, so you can be a powerhouse later.  Well... that might not happen in pubs, so adjust your item builds accordingly.

Here's a list of some items that are easier to afford / assemble, and will also allow you to be more effective, sooner in the game:

Infused Raindrop:  Perfect for the mana-starved, squishy carry, who's up against magic burst.  This item will save your life, especially when you don't have a support who will die for you...

Power Treads:  these are a good, cheap, flexible item.  Tread-switching to a different ability might just give you the survivability (Str) or Mana (Int) you need.

Drums:  Sometimes thought of as a support item, but it gives a lot of stats for the price, and it's "cheap" on item slots for the stats that it gives.  Good to buy if your hero is squishy.  Drums are now an intelligence-hero equivalent of an Aquila.  Generally better on supports, now.

Ring of Aquila:  Normally bought on agilty heroes that need mana, gives a little starting boost to damage, armor, and mana regen.

Solar Crest:  Although the Medallion is normally thought of as a support item, the Solar Crest is actually quite amazing, and gives your squishy carry both survivability (armor/evasion) and mana regen which can make them very effective in the mid game, especially with lockdown + armor reduction on enemies.

Dragon Lance:  For ranged carries who need bulking up, this is a great item.  The range bonus is great and aids your positioning, but early-on, you mainly want it for stats.  Builds very nicely into the Hurricane Pike for more mobility.  Against some opponents (Clockwerk, Ursa, Riki), you might even build the Force Staff first!

Vanguard:  My experience with this item is that it makes you extremely durable in the early and mid game.  Often sneered at in favour of damage items, this item really bulks up the squishier carries (like PA), and directs you toward building a Basher (quite a good item, and inconvenient to your opponents who like to TP away), and eventually an Abyssal.  Do NOT build this if you already went for a Poor Man's Shield - if you go too defensive, you won't do any damage and will still be ineffective in midgame fights.

Vladamir's Offering:  Not to be underestimated - this item is easily assembled, and gives lots of little bonuses.  You can also hang onto it for most of the game.  Just make sure someone else isn't also buying it, as more than one is a waste.  If you need your own lifesteal and someone else is getting Vlad's, get Helm of the Dominator.  just get a straight Morbid Mask, and later build into Satanic.

Maelstrom:  this weapon does surprising damage with its procs, and acts as a farming item as well.  If your hero is pretty good on survivability and/or has an escape ability, this might be your first go-to item.  You can keep this a long time before building into Mjolnir - it gives you damage but little else.

Sange and Yasha:  for Str and Agility heroes, this gives a lot of what you need to be effective mid game:  survivability, damage, and chase/speed.  It's easy to assemble out of lower-cost parts (mostly), and even the Sange or Yasha is quite effective on its own.  Can also be disassembled later for Halberd + Manta, or Silver Edge + Manta.

Black King Bar (BKB):  Sometimes you just need magic immunity early.  Don't dismiss this item because it doesn't give as much damage as you'd like, for the price.  Sometimes, having one means being in the fight instead of running for your life or getting blown up instantly.

Rejected (7.05)

Helm of the Dominator:  This used to be a great item for stats, but they nerfed it a lot, and now it's more of a support item.  However, do not underestimate the power of creep buffs!

Other Items for Mid-Game fighting carries:
  • Phase Boots (good for chase or if hp is already decent)
  • Crystalis (good if your damage is already high and you just need more damage)
  • Armlet (str carries)
  • Mask of Madness (nerfed then buffed - good again, but only on tougher heroes)
Race Car” Carry:  Phase Boots, Windlace, S&Y / Manta.  For S&Y, get Yasha first for the speed.

Your item slots might look like this:
  • Power Treads or Phase Boots
  • Drums or Aquila
  • Maelstrom
  • Sange and/or Yasha
  •  TP scroll
  •   <Hero-specific item (Blink, Soul Ring, Hp or Regen item, etc)  or “leftover” starting item (such as a shield)>

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