You had many wins, losses, moments of triumph, and heartbreak. So you’ve put in a decent number of hours into DOTA 2 to be a good player. So we will give you some tips and ideas to improve your skills with your future matches in this report.
Cancel your attack animations
In most strategy games, DOTA 2 included, each unit’s regular attack (usually assigned to the right mouse button or the A key) goes through an animation cycle with specific durations in each step. For DOTA 2 regular attacks have an attack point, which refers to the time it takes for the attack to land.
For melee heroes, the attack point begins once the hero gets within range of the target, and starts to swing its weapon. The attack point continues until the blade or head of the weapon makes visual contact with the target. On the other hand, a ranged hero’s attack point ends once their projectile becomes visible and begins traveling towards the target.
After the attack point comes the backswing, which can be seen as a “delay” of sorts. and it renders heroes that just finished the first half of their attack animation unable to take any other action.
But heroes in DOTA 2 can cancel their backswing by inputting a move command in between. That allows them to cast spells or move towards another point on the map. Doing so makes your attacks much more efficient. Cancelling the backswing will give you more time to chase your target down. Try to get into the habit of doing this, instead of just right clicking your target once and calling it a day.
Do the Orbwalk
Orbwalking is a special kind of animation cancel which applies to heroes with attack modifiers—known to legacy DOTA Allstars players as “Orb Effects”—as abilities. Picks like Outworld Devourer and Drow Ranger have access to this trick, thanks to their ability to manually apply their attack modifiers to their regular attacks.
Apart from preventing creep aggro entirely, the biggest advantage of orbwalking is the same as regular animation cancelling, you get to skip the backswing entirely and input new commands as a result. To perform the orbwalk, simply use the hotkey of your heroes attack modifier ability, and left click the desired target. Cancel the backswing by issuing a move command, then repeat that.
Draw creep aggro in lane by right clicking an enemy hero
Creeps in DOTA 2 are programmed to switch aggro to units that issue attack commands against heroes that are aligned with them. You can actually use this to your advantage during the battle for last hits in the laning phase, as it pulls the creep wave slightly towards your side of the map. Doing so also gives you some more breathing room to contest last hits in the first place. Your lane opponent will be less willing to harass and dive you under the protection of your tower.
To pull creep aggro, simply right click one of your lane opponents while within target acquisition range of the enemy creep wave. Cancel the attack command around half a second after, and start walking back in the direction of your tower. This will cause the creeps to follow you in hopes of protecting their hero. You can even do this if your lane opponent is missing by right clicking a hero all the way across the map.
Use hold position or the “Standard” auto attack setting
Allowing your hero to mindlessly auto attack creeps in the lane is never a good idea. The extra damage output causes enemy creeps to die faster, thus pushing the lane towards the enemy tower. And when that happens, you open yourself up to getting ganked from the side or even from behind if you’re in one of the side lanes.
To prevent this, use the hold position command, which is bound to the H key by default. Alternatively, you can set your auto attack behavior to “Standard” in the settings menu. That will prevent auto attacks if you have recently moved, denied a creep, or pressed the stop (S) or hold position key. Focus on just aiming for last hits without dealing extra damage to creeps.
Drop stat items before using consumables
In DOTA 2, the health and mana gauges function a little less differently than in other games. This mechanic is highly abusable when it comes to consumable restorative items. For example, imagine that you have an Enchanted Mango, which instantly restores 125 mana when consumed. Your hero also currently has 300 mana out of a maximum of 500, with the maximum being boosted from 400 by an item that gives an additional 100 max mana. If you pop the Mango as is, you would end up with 425 mana.
But if you drop the mana-boosting item before eating the Mango, you would end up with a fully-topped up gauge. You shouldn’t do this in the face of an enemy hero who could otherwise destroy your item while it’s on the ground, so either back off for a bit before dropping your item or just place it in the backpack for a while.
Hit the Quick buy key if you’re going to die anyway
Gold loss upon death also happens to be one of the biggest aspects of DOTA 2 that sets it apart from other MOBAs. And because sometimes there just isn’t a way out of a sticky situation, the Quick buy key comes in very handy.
Placing your next purchase in your Quick buy area is a good habit keep in the first place—but another thing to consider is using Quick buy whenever you find yourself facing the inevitable. You are bound to lose gold either way, so it’s usually better to buy out as much as possible before your hero die and wait the respawn time.
You can use these tips and ideas to improve you gameplay with your future matches in DOTA 2.
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