Last night, Valve released the latest patch for Dota 2 and it includes some big changes.  The full patch log can be viewed here, but here’s a summary containing some of the bigger game-changers.


Ancient Apparition

– Ice Vortex cooldown decreased from 6 to 5
– Ice Blast base AoE increased from 225 to 275
– Added Aghanim’s Scepter (Ice Blast duration increased from 8/9/10 to 17)

This is a great buff to this underplayed hero. A bigger AoE will make the ultimate easier to land, and it does insane damage combined with a scepter. AA will likely still be played as a 4 or 5 in pro play though, so this is probably going to affect pubs more than tournament play.


– Power Cogs no longer knock back magic immune units

This will annoy a lot of Clockwerk players, as this was a powerful counter to heroes like Lifestealer. Hopefully this won’t reduce the picks of Clockwerk too much, as he’s one of the more fun heroes to watch.


– Doom now disables Feast, Backtrack, Dispersion, Juxtapose, Bristleback and Blood Bath
– Aghanim’s Scepter upgrade duration reworked (duration doesn’t count down while near Doom)

Doom’s ultimate is now even scarier, with the ticker not going down while Doom is near. Racecar Doom builds will become very popular in pubs, so if you see a Doom in the near future just run. And cry.


– Base Strength increased by 3
– Burning Spears DPS increased from 4/8/12/16 to 5/10/15/20
– Life Break HP cost increased from 35/30/25% to 40/35/30%
– Berserker’s Blood Reworked (now has 4/5/6/7% magic resistance and 8/12/16/20 attack speed per stack)
– Removed from Captain’s Mode

Huskar just became a lot tankier. Before the change, it was common to see a Huskar get a kill, but get killed straight afterwards. This could be the patch that makes Huskar a more respected hero at higher levels of play.

Lone Druid

– Spirit Bear now has its HP drained by Armlet when active
– Spirit Bear bounty increased from 100 to 300

One of the few nerfs in the patch, this change makes the Spirit Bear less powerful, and will hopefully mean greater variety in the Lone Druid builds we see.



– Medusa: Stone Gaze Rework

Any unit facing Medusa will have its attack, movement and turn rate reduced by 50% until the end of the spell. If you accumulate 2 seconds time (in total) facing Medusa, you will turn to stone.

Stoned units are disabled, have 100% magic resistance and take extra damage from physical attacks.
View Angle Spread: 85
Gaze Duration: 6 seconds.
Stone Duration: 3 seconds
Bonus Physical Damage: 30/40/50%
AOE: 1000
CD: 90
Manacost: 200
Kills illusions instead of petrifying them

– Removed from Captain’s Mode

Another major ult rework, this will help medusa to be more useful in teamfights early on. The ult will kill illusions outright too, which will help against Phantom Lancer.


– If a unit dies under Reaper’s Scythe, it will be credited to Necrolyte
– Aghanim’s Reaper’s Scythe causes buyback to be disabled on heroes it kills for that death

In one of the more controversial changes in the patch, Necrolyte becomes the first hero to be able to prevent buyback. Considering the importance of buybacks, especially late game, this could have a huge impact on both pubs and pro level games.


– Added Aghanim’s Scepter (Global and affects buildings)

Omniknight is yet another hero to get a scepter upgrade, making his ultimate global and, interestingly, making buildings immune to damage too. This is a decent buff, that will make an already great support even more viable.

Skeleton King

– Reincarnation slow now affects attack speed as well
– Reincarnation slow happens immediately upon death rather than after reincarnating
– Critical Strike Reworked (Allows you to temporarily trade Critical Strike for a 7 second 20% max life drain)

Skeleton King is no longer the ‘one ability’ hero! This change now allows SK to instantly drain 20% of HP temporarily from an enemy. This is 20% of max health, so it could be great against heroes like Huskar and Lifestealer.


Black King Bar

– Magic Immunity now has a 6th level of decrease

The Black King Bar now has another level, meaning that on it’s 6th use, it will have a cooldown of 50 and duration of 4.


– Initial charges increased from 6 to 8
– Can be activated to instantly kill yourself (requires a ground target)

Easy self-denies for anyone! It is unknown yet whether Tinker’s rearm will work with Bloodstone. If it does, it will make an already hard to kill hero even more slippery.


– While empty, causes couriers to move 30% slower

An odd change, presumably meant to make it more of a tactical decision whether to bottle crow or not.

Dust of Appearance

– Now stacks in inventory
– Now slows heroes with an invisibility buff on them by 10%

In one of the bigger item buffs, Dust of Appearance will make those annoying invis heroes like Riki and Nyx Assassin much easier to catch.


Gem of True Sight

– Gem can no longer be destroyed
– Gold cost increased from 700 to 850

The Gem of True Sight is now an even bigger counter to invis heroes, although it will be a riskier purchase if you have invis-reliant heroes on your own team.

Observer Wards

– Initial Stock now starts at 1 instead of 2 (max stock is still 2)

This will have a bigger impact on pro games than pubs, giving teams less options at the start in where they will be able to have sight on the map.

Quelling Blade

– Can now target Observer or Sentry wards dealing 100 damage (wards have 200 hp)
– Cast range increased from 100 to 350

The Quelling Blade is now a bit more useful beyond the creep damage buff, and could even be useful for supports in dewarding.

Captain’s Mode

– Bans changed from 2/3 to 2/2/1
– Picks changed from 3/2 to 2/2/1
– Adjusted ban/pick/reserve times Captain’s Mode

This reworking of Captain’s Mode seems a bit more balanced, and is a positive change for the Dota 2 metagame.


So in summary, there’s been a lot of buffs to lesser picked heroes, only a few nerfs to the frequently picked, and a lot of changes geared towards stopping that fucking Lancer. All in all, a great patch for a constantly evolving game.