7 heroes to boost your MMR in 7.25c

Lycan, Wraith king

7 heroes to boost your MMR in 7.25c

7.25 brought some big changes to the table, nerfing fan favourite pudge into oblivion, bringing the
meta to a more focused 5v5 brawl and allowing some old forgotten heroes to see the light of day.
The name of the game is mid game fighting. The days of 50min games with 6 slotted Spectre, Phantom Lancer and Medusa are far gone. We are  now in a game where passively farming jungle camps just won’t cut it.
Here are 7 heroes to boost your MMR in the current meta.

Lycan – Wolves need no armour!


Where he fits into the meta.

Well, this one was easy to guess. The hero has skyrocketed in popularity since 7.25 initially dropped,
which isn’t surprising considering the hero has been consistently getting buffed. 7.23 reworked “Howl” into
what it is today, and 7.24 and 7.25 buffed his laning stage and improved his “Shapeshift” duration and
transformation time meaning fights are easier to get into, and you are strong for a longer period of time.

The meta also heavily favours Lycan picks as grouping up and pushing objectives is exactly what you want to do,
so why not also buff your team with a “Helm of the dominator” and “Necronomicon 3”.
7.25b and 7.25c brought slight nerfs to his late game potential as well as starting damage, but considering
the hero is boasting an impressive 60.18% win rate in Divine and Immortal bracket the hero is still at the top
of his game, while being over 50% in all other brackets, according to Dotabuff.

What items to build?

The item build to go for is an early “Helm of the Dominator”, followed by a “Necronomicon 3” and rounding it up with either an “Assault Cuirass” or “Black King Bar” if needed. “Desolator” and “Basher” are also viable depending if your team requires more pushing damage or lock down. Vladimir’s offering should be avoided on Lycan as it delays your more crucial item timings and can easily be gotten on the pos3/4. Skipping any kind of boots is recommended as his movement speed with an active  Necronomicon Archer” should be enough, while during engagements you will be moving at an insane 650 MS!

In my experience picking Lycan has never been as fun as it is now. His insane combination of team-fight contribution, pushing, and ability to recover from any bad lane makes him an excellent pick currently. Your opponents have to either take bad fights, risk losing half their base in mere moments or go unconventional item builds to deal with the oncoming threat. So go and pick him to boost your MMR.

Weaver – Skitter scatter!

weaver hero

Where he fits into the meta.

Weaver got some very decent sustain buffs recently, increasing his base mana regen to 0.75mana/s, putting him at a comfortable 1.5 mana/s at lvl 1. With his 270 base mana pool he can use “Shukuchi” Shukuchi 4 times, but adding a very affordable “Ring of Basilius”     bumps that to 2.9 which in combination with a simple stick allows you to spam it without end or worry of running out of juice. Just this would be enough to suggest the hero to players, but “The Swarm” also got buffed in 7.24 meaning more minus armour reduction meaning more dead people on your screen.

What makes weaver even more viable is his myriad of playstiles and item choices. You are free to mix and match what your team needs. He has always been a viable offlaner with his elusiveness. With gold being more readily available to supports as well, he can make a viable pos 4. Rushing “Medallion of courage, “Urn of shadows or even “Aghanim’s Scepter.  Being free to dish out insane damage or split-push lanes without a worry makes him a force to be reckoned with.

What items to build?

Your early game items should consist of multiple “Wraith bands” and a “Magic Wand”, striving either towards “Diffusal Blade”, “Maelstrom” or “Desolator”, depending on what the game requires. A simple “Blight stone” or even “Medallion of Courage” is a cost efficient way of boosting your overall DPS. When facing against lineups with a lot of magic burst going for a “Dragon Lance” and “Manta Style” is recommended, but against teams heavy on disables a “Black King Bar” is a sure-fire way to be able to stand your ground. If all else fails, you may always purchase an
“Aghanim’s scepter” to turn all of your enemies hard earned efforts to waste as you simply reset any ally that may have gotten caught out of position.

Support or core?

Whenever I play with a support Weaver I can feel at ease knowing that the enemy supports will have a bad time laning, as few can trade effectively with him, and later on they will be starved for gold buying detection and defensive items as they are likely to be jumped even when playing from the back line. Saving other’s with “Time Lapse” can be game turning and is pretty simple to pull off, especially in lower brackets where playing an invisible hero with max MS means you are virtually unkillable. Going for a core position on Weaver is even more fun, especially when facing low armour, slow kite-able heroes who will just shred while you run circles around them with your insane movement speed. With so many playstiles why not pick him and boost your MMR.

Slardar – Packed to the gills!


Where he fits into the meta.

While Slardar has seen no recent change, and even a few nerfs before that (Guardian sprint costing 25 mana) the hero excels in the current meta. Corrosive haze will always be an amazing tool if not only to keep track of enemy movements, but the heroes synergy with other meta favorites is where Slardar shines. Picking him against a Lycan means that the wolf that needed no armour, needed some, as he will be shred at a glare of any physical damage dealer. And, playing on a team with Lycan will make the game an assured victory as Slardar gives a massive boost to his team’s damage output, while also providing a decent front-line tank for his more squishy allies.
Even going into late-game, if need be, isn’t a bad decision as gaining 1 000 night vision at lvl 20 means you see your enemies before they see you. And know what other hero has bonus night vision? Lycan! It’s a match made in heaven. So abuse it before the Frog decides to nerf it.

What items to build?

His item builds are fairly open for customization. You can either opt for more damage foregoing the classic “Blink dagger” for a “Shadow blade”. Stand your ground smashing faces with an “Echo Saber” or go for mass armour reduction with “Medallion of Courage”, “Assault Cuirass” or even “Desolator”. My personal favourite build is “Power Treads” with a casual “Gloves of Haste” to improve his bashing potential, into either a simple “Hood of Defiance” or “Vanguard” and then rushing an “Aghanim’s scepter”. Having 40% status resistance means most stuns are wasted on you (especially in combination with the status resistance from “Heaven’s Halberd”), the bonus +35 HP regeneration means you will always be at high health, +12 armour is just an efficient boost to your physical EHP allowing you to shrug off tower shots during pushes and man-fight Physical damage cores with ease.

Underlord – This land will burn!


Where he fits into the meta.

My favourite in this current patch with a 73% winrate so far. Underlord bring everything your team needs to the table, making him a perfect fit for this meta. Be it wave clear in the form of “Firestorm”, crowd control with “Pit of Malice” or just a Get out of jail free card with “Dark Rift”. In a meta that favours 5man grouping up, what better hero could there be than one that wants to carry all the team auras, offers a lot with his kit, and is also ridiculously hard to kill. He hasn’t seen much popularity, with only a 7% pick rate across all brackets, which means less experienced players will not know how to play against it, and it shows with his near 58% winrate in Legend bracket, and close to 55% in all other brackets.

Underlord is a good way to boost your MMR in this meta not only for all of the reasons mentioned above, but also because of the new revamped picking order. Cheese picks are more common than ever, and having at least 1 hero able to deal with illusion based heroes like Phantom Lancer and Naga siren, and most notably Meepo, means you will not be harmed by your teammate’s picks on your way towards victory and that sweet +30 MMR.

What items to build?

Item builds are fairly open with 2 viable builds. The 1st one focuses on boosting your team’s overral strength by going for an early “Mechanism”, followed by either “Pipe of Insight” or “Crimson Guard”. A “Vladimir’s offering may also be purchased as it offers even more sustain and mana regeneration for those long drawn out engagements. The 2nd build focuses on dealing damage and disrupting enemy actions during fights, focusing on items such as “Rod of Atos” (Pit of Malice + Rod + Pit is extremely annoying to play against), “Veil of Discord” and and an eventual “Scythe of Vyse” just for good measure. Boots of choice should in most cases be “Arcane boots” into “Guardian Grieves” but it’s always good to keep in mind disassembling “Arcane boots” for “Lotus Orb” and quickly upgrading to “Tranquil boots” is a viable, cost-effective decision.

Overall, he is  a safe 3rd pick, although beware he is heavily countered in lane by Slark and Ursa. In those cases you may want to stack waves or creep skip as even laning at lvl 1 can be detrimental if the pos5 is around. So far the hero has given me a lot of success in games with his innate ability to delay pushes, reduce enemy damage output and save teammates from inopportune situations. What better way to boost your MMR.

Helm of the Dominator

Special shout-out to “Helm of the Dominator” for being able to control a “Kobold Foreman” with “Speed Aura”, walking it into the Rosh pit and teleporting my entire team into it using “Dark Rift” for an unexpected team wipe and Rosh steal (not something I’d recommend doing against Earth Shaker though).

Nature’s prophet – For the trees!


Where he fits into the meta.

While 7.25 buffed him in the form of free bonus damage after using his ultimate ability “Wrath of Nature”, he is back to his former glory of being the king of split-pushing. The changes to Boots of travel not having an active ability, but rather upgrading the Town Portal Scroll means heroes teleporting in to stop your push will not be able to easily re-join their teams, but you can, making every engagement either a 5v4 in your favour or the enemy team having to sacrifice towers, creep waves and ultimately map pressure. The changes to “necronomicon 1” don’t hurt either, because with minimal micro you can farm either the enemy jungle with Treants and Necro Warriors or your team’s dead lane. No matter how the game goes, you always have something to do, be it pushing towers, cutting waves or just teaming up with your allies using strong team items and going for the all in.

Perhaps another nerf to Treants may be coming soon, at least at the early levels, as being able to deny creeps with ~100 dmg on lvl 1, block pull camps and drag waves without risk of dying is still a big part of the hero’s kit.

What items to build?

Starting with a blight stone is an easy way to secure last hits and dish out more harrasment towards the enemy. It  also helping with pushing T1 towers once you decide to take it, which you inevitably will. Boots of choice are either Phase boots if armour is required, or Power Treads with it’s superior DPS. After that it’s about adapting to the game at hand. If your team lacks sustain perhaps Vladimir’s offering into Pipe or Crimson guard is best. If the name of the game is damage, feel free to pick-up a Mjolnir or Desolator and Daedalus. Orchid’s malevolence and Scythe of Vyse are still amazing as being able to show up anywhere with a soft or hard disable can set up many ganks with minimum effort.

What lane should I go to?

Currently being played in all 3 lanes and all 5 positions truly shows his wide field of expertise. Meracle and Gorgc have been showing the hero off in the safelane.  fn and XCalibur keep destroying mid with impressive fighting contribution. Foregoing the classic “Orchid’s malevolence” rush for an early “Blade mail” seems to be the best approach. If they can do it, then you too can boost your MMR.

Wraith king – Submit to the Wraith King’s rule!


Where he fits into the meta.

Boasting a 55% win rate with a decent 17% pick rate is impressive for such an iconic “simple” hero. The one called the “1 button hero” has changed a lot in recent years.  7.25 gave him more than a slight buff to his laning stage and team-fight durability. Considered a noob move to only level your passives, is now a viable strategy. As “Vampiric Aura” gives +6 damage at lvl 1 and an impressive + 36 at lvl 4. It’s basically like having a free “Claymore” AND a “Broadsword”. But where does he fit in the current meta when his only damage output is single target? Well, “Radiance” is your answer. With his skeletons farming jungle and empty lanes he can secure it at a decent time. Countering either line-ups with many units or illusion based heroes isn’t an issue anymore. Having 2 lives during fights doesn’t hurt him either.A golden rule for team-fights in DOTA will always be:

 Your health is not only your health, but also the team’s health.

What items to build?

Item builds for the hero are pretty straight forward currently. The most common approach is to use his high innate farming speed to flash farm an early “Radiance”. After that the build opens up offering either “Blink Dagger” or “Shadow Blade” for initiation. Afterwards an “Assault Cuirass” to enable high-ground pushes and Roshan as an objective. A situational “Aghanim’s scepter” purchase can be amazing against nuke heavy line-ups and heroes such as Magnus and Faceless Void. Despite their team-fight control your team will still be able to pop their cool-downs.

In case there is another radiance carrier on the team, foregoing the item should be considered. Armlet, Echo saber and Blink dagger are all viable choices. Offering less AOE DPS but a much earlier power spike which can turn a 15min push into a set of barracks or even throne.

Every spell that you tank,saves a support in the backline. That brings us to our final hero to boost your MMR in 7.25.

Warlock – A new chapter in my Black Grimoire.


Where he fits into the meta.

The most simple to play support hero with the greatest potential to swing a fight. Once his only purpose was to heal carries in lane, and occasionally drop a “Chaotic Offering” to turn fights, his dark time to shine has arrived. The #1 hero to boost your MMR while also being one of the least mechanically difficult to learn. Use “Shadow Word” if you are having sustain issues.  If it’s about disrupting enemy movement “Upheaval” will take care of it. Enemies will be moving at snail pace. Struggling to move into position to cast spells.

But the hero’s bread and butter skill in this meta specifically must be “Fatal bonds”. Having 5 hero’s split their damage is more than a 20% increase.. The spread is before any type of reduction takes place. Heroes like Underlord, Centaur, Bristleback and others will turn on their backline casters. It is when you force the players out of their comfort zone,  that they make more mistakes. Forcing heroes designed to soak up damage  to instead spread it will be like wildfire among enemy ranks. Just a perfect way to boost your MMR.

What items to build?

His item build as a support shouldn’t be too much of a headache to think about. Brown boots into a simple Wand is core. After that it’s either about rushing a “Force Staff”, “Glimmer Cape” or “Arcane Boots”.  “Urn of Shadows” is viable as well, as keeping your cores in prime shape will turn any successful engagement into an objective. Late game you should be opting for an “Aghanim’s scepter” or “Refresher Orb”. “Lotus Orb” or “Pipe of Insight” might provide more to your team’s overall power, if sustain is the primary need.

The state of the meta.

Dota battle

The playground has changed and it is time to replace your farming gear in favor of weapons and shields. Currently the game is more fast paced than ever before and it’s either adapt or be forgotten. Heroes that don’t rely on farm have a chance to shine with new possible play-stiles. Now is the best time to boost your mmr to the next level.

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