Valve has announced that Dota 2’s 7.20 patch will be coming very soon, just as soon as the Kuala Lumpur Major ends. With another patch on the horizon, let’s look back on 7.19 and the heroes that thrived in it.
#1 – Riki
Win rate – 57.77, Pick rate – 22.60, KDA Ratio – 3.2
Riki tops our list as the new king of the pubs mostly thanks to buffs to his Blink Strike ability, letting him slip in and out of combat and harass his opponents effectively. While his innate invisibility gives him the advantage in lower skill brackets, it isn’t invincibility. Riki can still be shut down with true sight, but it’s harder to keep him down thanks to the currently prevailing pace of play extending games for much later. While he may not stand up as well to most other hard carries, Riki can still take out enemy supports almost instantly, which can make all the difference in the late game.
#2 – Spectre
WR – 56.36, PR – 16.11, KDAR – 3.78
Spectre continues her ascendancy over the other hard carries in the game that was in full display back in The International 2018. As proven by the TI8 champions OG, any team with a Spectre on it will win late, no matter how far behind they may be. This is much more evident in pub play, where teams are usually not coordinated enough to close a game out quickly before Spectre comes online in the late game. The only problem, as always, is holding out long enough to get there.
#3 – Centaur Warrunner
WR – 56.17, PR – 7.12, KDAR – 2.9
Centaur Warrunner remains an unorthodox pick for the offlane, as evidenced by him having the second lowest pick rate of the heroes on our list. While it will be hard for him to thrive without a lane partner or the midlaner coming over for a gank or two, Centaur can become very self-sufficient once he gets his core items up. While Blink Dagger is still a crucial pick-up to be the initiator, some players have begun delaying getting it in favor of more survivability items and relying on just outlasting opponents in fights. Though unorthodox, Centaur can be a very potent offlaner if you can make him work in your lineup.
WR – 55.93, PR – 20.76, KDAR – 3.79
No matter how squishy he may be, Zeus’ sheer damage output alone can make him a good core pick. Add to that his increased global presence thanks to his new Nimbus ability granted by Aghanim’s Scepter, and he can be an unlikely pub terror. The additional 0.5 second ministun on his Lightning Bolt from his Level 20 talent provides even more stopping power, but at the cost of foregoing a 15% cooldown reduction. As always Black King Bar will nullify all that he can do, but he can deal more hurt than ever once the magic immunity wears off.
#5 – Wraith King
WR – 55.37, PR – 15.09, KDAR – 3.38
Wraith King’s old reputation as a one-dimensional right click hero belies the surprising (for some) versatility he now possesses. Aside from what we all already know about him, WK’s newish ability to raise spooky, scary skeletons can still catch some players off-guard when confronted one-on-one. A newfound niche at the 3 spot in higher skill level games also highlights his ability to ensure make fights last longer than enemies would intend, thanks to his Agh’s upgrade, does him good too. Even as most can win with him by just right clicking away, he brings more than just that to the table.
#6 – Chaos Knight
WR – 54.84, PR – 7.42, KDAR – 2.72
Unorthodoxy has always come with playing as Chaos Knight, and that touches on more than him having the third-lowest pick rate of our Top 10. While most carries are busy farming creeps, CK relies on a steady diet of hero kills to keep himself afloat. While recent changes to Bounty Rune spawn timings essentially killed a creative roaming CK strategy, it led to players sticking with the tried and true way of playing as him. As always, CK is virtually unstoppable with a damage item, BKB, and a lucky roll on Phantasm. But that won’t always be the case.
#7 – Ursa
WR – 54.59, PR – 13.97, KDAR – 2.88
Ursa will almost always be a good pick with his ability to take Roshan much, much earlier than other heroes. While his strengths are best suited to overpowering opponents in lower skill level games, picking him in higher skill level games is more feasible too since he’s now flexible enough to be played at 3 or 4 spot. Though the favored pace of play goes against him, as his effectiveness goes down the longer a game drags on. Still, he’s a pretty safe hero to have in your lineup at times.
#8 – Vengeful Spirit
WR – 54.50, PR – 9.51, KDAR – 2.33
Vengeful Spirit has always been one of those stalwart heroes that perform well across all skill levels even as patches come and go. One of the big reasons is her versatility, being one of the few heroes that can be played in all five positions without giving up too much of an advantage to the enemy. Another is her great all-around skillset that will always contribute for her team, having someone that can stun enemies, reduce their armor, and force them out of position all while boosting the team’s damage is always a boon.
#9 – Undying
WR – 54.09, PR – 5.86, KDAR – 2.78
Many would have surely been surprised to see Undying here, as he is rarely picked yet often thought of as just a mere annoyance. The thing that most people fail to see is that’s just what he’s supposed to do, Undying annoys you… to death. He can win lanes by spamming Decay, give his team the advantage in teamfights with Tombstone and Flesh Golem, and provide burst heal or damage with Soul Rip. Those abilities won’t do much by themselves, but things get scary once Undying gets them all off. Just imagine this: you’re chasing down a support Undying in a teamfight while being slowed down by Tombstone, then just as you’re about to land the killing blow, he gets a Soul Rip off to survive, then he turns things around by popping Flesh Golem and Decay. You were too busy being annoyed as he slaps you down and spams his taunts to literally dance around your grave.
#10 – Axe
WR – 53.82, PR – 19.99, KDAR – 2.39
Axe’s pick rate rose after TI8, where OG featured him in one of their legendary comebacks on their way to the championship. His winrate naturally rose too, but not as much as people would expect. He’s still very effective in lower skill level games but falls off hard the higher up the matchmaking ladder you go. Most still stick with the old way of playing him by having him initiate fights with Blink Dagger and expecting him to just stand and deliver. But nowadays players have found a more effective way to use him: no longer just the initiator, Axe can also counter-initiate by disrupting enemies from ganging up on his teammates, then weaving and bobbing in and out of the fight. He still absorbs damage for his team while dishing it out to his enemies as always, but it’s better to have him do it in short bursts and in critical moments in a fight.