What is DotA?
Defence of the Ancients (DotA) is one of the most popular custom maps for Warcraft III. Two versions were in wide circulation and use: DotA Allstars in English and CHAOS in Chinese. They differ greatly though based on the same framework of design. DotA is the most successful of a class of Warcraft III custom maps known as ‘Castle Defence’ in which – as the name suggests – the team of players defend a key structure while attempting to destroying that of the opponent. (Definition from Wikipedia – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dota )
What is the advantage of playing DotA?
– Improve teamwork, privities and relationships among team members.
– Improve your reaction, eyes and hands coordination.
– Improve your analytical skill.
– Keeps you alert all the time.
– Free to do anything you like, your so-called €˜strategy`
– Release stress 😛
1. General Guides
Alright, below are the general guides that I think is helpful after playing DotA for more than half-year. It is just my personal suggestions, it may be wrong at some point, do not follow exactly as it will change according to the actual situation. It is just a reference. Please give some comment if you have better techniques.
1.1 Knowing yourself and your enemy
There is about 72 heroes in the game. In order to familiar with their skills and combos, you need to play a lot. You may learn by seeing how other people using their skills and hero`s weaknesses. An alternative choice is that playing alone (single player mode), trying out all the heroes or search for forum about the replay and strategy for a particular hero. Knowing your opponent is important because it will affect what skill to level up and what item to build.
1.1.1 Strength Heroes
Strength heroes usually is quite weak at the beginning, low armor, low attack. You need to play with patient, because once you are level 8 and above then you will start to own until the end of the game. They have little mana, but hp regen faster, so use your skill only when necessary, do not spam them.
General item build:
Sange & Yasha
Heart of Tarrasque
1.1.2 Agility Heroes
Agi heroes having damn low life at start, but their attack is higher than others. And their attack speed is also faster. Usually play as assassin-style. At late game, they will have highest armor and fastest attack speed.General item build:
Ring of Regeneration
Sange & Yasha
1.1.3 Intelligent Heroes
Int heroes can spam skills at the beginning and able to level faster than others. Good at the beginning till mid game. But late game is quite weak.
General item build:
Oblivion Staff (Guinsoo)
Eye of Skadi
1.2 Be calm and patient
You need to be calm. Don`t be too heroic in the game. For most of the hero, it`s hard to kill others before level 5. Just concentrate in earning money and gaining exp.If you did kill other before level 5, which means your enemy is lame. And you have higher chance to dominate in the end as you gain level faster than others. Sometimes, when you are using the hero that is not familiar with, you need to stay calm and patient to learn their skills. Also, do not chase over tower, it is too risky, unless you have full life and using Nightstalker or Lycan (in wolf form).
1.3 Avoid dying too early
If you have been killed, then you will be in the worst situation. When you die, your opponent gains experience, level up faster, he then can farm happily. You die, you lose money, and you miss the chance to farm and to gain experience. If lets say you are facing a strong opponent, just stay calm, do not go in front to attack unless you are range hero. Stay behind the tower. And don`t die because of protecting your tower. It`s ok that your tower is down, but just don`t die. If you are fighting outside the tower range, then find a safe place to stand, it`s about half screen away from where your creeps is fighting. At this position you can still earn experience and can avoid being attacked because it`s too far from the opponent magic range. Of course you need some practice to test it out.
1.4 Work in team
DotA is a teamwork game, there is no one man show in the game, unless at the end of the game and your level is much higher than your opponent. While at the beginning of the game, you need to be alert what your teammate is doing, if he is trying to nuke an opponent, try to help in the combo attack and don`t just stand staring. For example, you are using mage, your teammate is using stunner, once he had stunned a target, you must try to attack that target and use your spell. If your teammate is being attack, then you should cover him by attacking the opponent that chasing him.
The best team-up is a melee stunner and a range attacker. Once stunned, then the range attacker could keep shooting the target. But the stunner must always take the initiative to make the stun. 2 stunners are the best, its perma-stun.
1.4.2 Advance Covering/Escaping
Advance covering need some good analytical skills. That is to choose the correct opponent to attack to avoid them to chase your teammate. Eg When a melee stunner and a range hero is chasing your teammate, try attack the stunner, so that he will fall back to avoid him stunning your teammate. But this must always depends on the situation, if let say the range attacker has low life, then you can attack him instead. But usually is to attack those chase in front first. Also, when you escape, try not to bang with those incoming creeps, they will slow you down, try to always controlling the path of moving, make sure you pass around them without blocking.
1.4.3 Alternating Fall-back
Alternating fall-back is a technique to cover each other back to a safe place. If your teammate had been attacked and is escaping and you know that both of you can`t defeat the enemy on 1v1, so attack those in front and they will change their target to you, similar to the advance covering, just that in this technique, your teammate that free from attack can now come back to attack those who aim at you. With this technique, sometimes you may even kill him or force him back to fountain. But if they`re in gang, then better escape.
This technique is quite risky as it will get both of you killed. When this is the situation, both your opponents are sharing experience points. That`s why sometimes you are level 6 but they still around level 4. Some people like to fight alone because they want to level up faster than others. But be careful, if your opponents are too strong, try to ask for help.
Harassing is crucial to avoid your opponent from gaining experience. But do you know when you aim your opponent, the creeps will attack you? This is the AI being set into the game to protect the player. But you can minimize the attack from creep.
1.6.1 Minimizing attack from creep while attacking hero
But there is some tips to minimize the attack from creep while you attack your opponent. For melee hero, don`t just click and attack your opponent straight away, once you right-clicking on him, all creeps will aim at you. To avoid this, you can walk to his side, attack once then quickly move away.
For range hero it is even easier, but don`t think you are range, then you can straight away click and target your opponent, the creep will still attack you if you do so. So what to do? When you have shoot out the last projectile on creep, stop a while and find a strategic position, then click on your opponent, your hero will release another projectile immediately. After that, hold stop, then shoot again. You do this to cover up the gap of your hero`s attack speed by stopping the attack command, thus the creeps will stop attacking you while waiting for another projectile to come out. Get it?
1.6.2 Melee vs Range
If you`re range, then the situation is benefiting you, at first your melee opponent will start to come to frontline to attack creep, you have to shoot him, chase him out from farming. Attacking him occasionally to make him stay back from the frontline. When their life is lower than half, its time to prevent them from getting experience. Always stand at the place where their range creep is standing. If he comes near, just shoot him to chase him out of the range of gaining experience. If you`re melee, and your opponent is range, you have no choice, play it patiently, only get the last hit from creep as mention in advance farming section. And better get a Ring of Health or Regeneration in this situation.
Farming is important, to get you some helpful item. Sometimes you will notice how come they earning money so fast, while you have only a Power Tread, but they already having a Battle Fury. This is because they did apply some techniques.One of the easiest techniques is to attack the enemy creep that your creeps are attacking. It has a higher chance to kill the creep to earn money. But if you play a lot, you can estimate the fighting pattern of creeps.The first creep that comes in line will be the first target to aim. After the creep died, then your creeps will cover up and attack the nearest to them, so just click and whack the creep being gang attacked. This technique will not only ensure you got higher chance to kill a creep, but you will also push faster. Sometimes you will found that how come your enemy`s creeps are usually stronger but your creeps is always losing, because they use this technique.If you found that it`s still too difficult, then when the both sides of creeps busy fighting, run to the back and whack the range creep (it`s weaker). This will ensure you got a kill, but this is hard if your opponent`s hero is there, unless you are range.
1.7.1 Advance Farming
Here are some tips and micros in farming. First try to take the last hit to kill a creep. But practical and theory is 2 different things. To do that, you need some practice, of course. Move your mouse over a creep or pressing ALT, estimate the speed that the creep`s life is draining (hopefully no latency), then click on the creep to take the last hit. You have to hold your hero so that it will not go and whack the creep, it will affect the estimation.
To do this, you need to keep ordering your hero moving around with small step, very small step, and not too far away from the creep until its time to make the last hit. It is safer than pressing Hold button, sometimes if the creep is too near, it will still attack. For those heroes that have high attack damage, eg Pudge, Treant Protector and Stone Giant is easier for this type of technique. Besides killing creep to earn money, you may also kill your own creep to prevent your opponent from gaining experience. But personally, I do not recommend this, because sometimes you just help your enemy to get the last hit if you can`t kill the creep.
1.7.2 Farm with safe
One of the safe farming way is to attack those neutral creeps around the map, no one will fight with you, but the money you gained is usually lesser than those enemy creeps and some more they are usually stronger and less experience. The highest amount of gold rewarded for creep is around 200, which is the level 6 flying dragon. You can attack those neutral creeps while you`re planning to go back to fountain to buy some stuff.
1.8 Adjusting creeps` movement timing
Besides getting a kill to earn money, you can make use the creeps to push tower. Not sure about how? Ok, sometimes when you are pushing, did you notice that your creep is always fighting in front of your enemy tower and its hard to attack the tower? Alright, here some tricks to counter this.First tricks is to block your creeps movement, its hard but useful if you did it. When your creeps move in line, stand in front of it, the creep will stop a while, then it will either move left or right side, then you just move forward and block again, another delay made, moving zigzag to block creep for several times and you will found that they`re being delayed so that they won`t stand in front of tower anymore, if can, try to make it slightly outside the range of tower, not too far, so that your creep can whack the tower faster.If you feel that this hard, try another, but not so efficient, that`s stop attacking creep, so that your creep will die faster and can and let them push back a while.
1.9 Playing around with Terrain and Fog of War
Terrain will affect the accuracy of your attack. If you shoot from low to high, u will probably miss most of the attack. So avoid shooting from the river, at least stand at the edge of the upper land. Also, the higher terrain is usually covered by fog of war if you stand at lower land. Those areas which behind trees are also covered by fog. Fog of war is useful when you trying to escape or ambush.Eg. when you have been chased by others, try to run up to the higher terrain or turn around corners. If you are a blinker, run to the edge and blink up to the terrain. You may also blink behind trees. If you`re chasing an opponent, try not to click on the target and let it chase by itself, because if they run to into fog of war, then your hero will just stop there. Always clicking to control your path especially chasing up to high terrain. Additionally, here are some tricks to cheat your enemy, if you are using Lothar Edge`s windwalk, and trying to escape, do this. Run to a junction, simply turn into a junction a little bit and then invisible, act like you are taking this path, but in fact, you`ll turn back and use another junction to escape. This is to avoid some smart player who knows that you taking this junction, they will just chasing all the way until your windwalk gone.
1.10 Familiar with all the shortcuts on map and place to hide
You must play a lot to familiar with all the shortcuts in the map. Using shortcuts can run away easily and also chase dying enemy faster.1.11 Always look at the minimap and make use of signal
The minimap on the bottom is useful. At least look at it once every 10 seconds. Knowing where your teammates are, and your opponents` location every moment. Especially when you are farming alone, keep an eye on it. If you saw them coming to your way or all disappear on the map, better beware of being ambushed. Also, you can help your teammate out of danger.
With the minimap, your opponent will also notice that you are going to ambush them if they saw you moving towards them. So to prevent letting them to know your movement direction, after you attack the last wave of creep, stand for a while, so that the fog of war set in and in THEIR minimap will not show your position anymore. Take this chance to move towards them.The signal (ALT then left-click on map) is useful. Use it when you need help. Use it to notify your teammate where the enemy is coming from. Use it to tell your teammate where to gather. But do not blink more than 3 signals on the map, its confusing. If you place a lot of signal at the same spot, it will make be difficult for your teammate to look at the map for how many heroes are there. And do not simply use signal.
1.12 Full concentration
Do not play DotA when you are sleepy or talking on phone, you need full concentration during the game. Unless you`re a godlike player who is able to multitask, then you can do this.
1.13 Ask and learn
If you are not familiar with certain hero or item build, try to ask your teammate for help, and don`t simply buying item. This will affect your whole team. For those who act as mentor, teach with patient.