The latest dota gameplay update 7.19 makes a number of small but notable changes, especially to meta heroes, including a somewhat heavy-handed nerf to a fan-favourite in Pudge.
Quality over quantity.
That’s the main gist of the latest dota gameplay update, which dropped earlier today.
While the final notable event before The International 2018 may not have been a DPC tournament, Valve (and pretty much the rest of the Dota 2 community) seems to have had their eyes on it. Not only did the patch drop just mere moments right after the end of the Dota Summit 9, but it also includes notable changes to the small pool of heroes that emerged as rather “too strong” during the event itself and the many weeks before it.
Zeus, a common pub-stomber, was recently nerfed. It may not have been “huge” at first glance, but dropping the radius of Nimbus from 500 to 450 units is huge. Big enough to make it easier to escape from inside the affected area. Perhaps more importantly, Pudge no longer will be that hotly-contested of a pick, with Meat Hook receiving a huge cooldown increase during its early levels.
Finally, anyone who hated the daily heroes mechanic can rest easy now knowing that they’re not as “broken” anymore; daily heroes will now only get just one mango instead of two.
With no notable tournament scheduled between now and the start of TI8, we can pencil in the latest dota gameplay update as the last for quite while.
We’ll help you make some sense of it.
Uh… What Happened?
- Increased Meat Hook cooldown from 17/15/13/11 to 27/22/17/12
We’re with you on this Pudge. Seriously, what happened? Care to explain, Icefrog? Did you just buff Pudge to boost Arcana sales temporarily? What a move.
Kidding aside — it’s not as if Pudge needs a buff when he’s consistently been the most popular hero in Dota 2 since forever — Pudge was getting a little obnoxious. Many may look to the 7.18 buff to the Meat Hook cast range and max distance (from 1000/1100/1200/1300 to 1300 across all levels) as the key reason why Pudge is getting picked so often lately, and it certainly did help. But, the changes that came with 7.13 was actually what led to all of this, as the increased HP boost from each point in strength made it possible for Pudge to be so damn danky without buying a single STR item.
You could say that it took a while for the pro scene to catch on, but once it did, they never looked back. Thankfully, because of the latest dota gameplay update, Pudge, though still incredibly tanky and annoying, will not be as much of a must-pick anymore.
- Waning Rift silence duration increased from 1.5/2/2.5/3 to 2/2.5/3/3.5
More like Puck in.
After being a rather situational pick played only by a handful of players, Puck is finally back in the fray. Sure, a .5 second duration may not seem like much, but as is the case with the buffs and nerfs with the latest dota gameplay update, it’s not always about eye-popping numbers. 3 seconds of silence is enough already. Add even half a second to it, and Puck, as elusive as he already is, is nigh-untouchable in the right hands.
With a -8s Waning Rift cooldown talent at Level 20, Puck will now have access to a 3.5 second silence with a 5 second cooldown. That’s near 100% uptime. Not to mention the additional silence duration means that Puck players can decide to focus on leveling up Illusory Orb and Phase Shift earlier on in the game, which was when Puck is usually the most vulnerable.
It wasn’t so long ago that Puck was a flex pick that teams could pick during the first phase and play anywhere from positions 2 to 4. Expect teams to go back to that come The International 2018 *cough* Evil Geniuses *cough*.
I Didn’t See That Coming
- Crystal Nova manacost increased from 100/120/140/160 to 130/140/150/160
Obviously, we did.
We could see it from a mile away, as we said in our Crystal Maiden article not too long ago. This was followed up by a YouTube video by Kevin ‘Purge‘ Codec, who basically broke down just how “broken” the supposedly unplayable hero was.
Spamming Crystal Nova in a 2-1-2 meta was so easy that a nerf to Crystal Maiden was going to come sooner or later, and now it did. Again, as is the case with the other nerfs and buffs in the latest dota gameplay update, this nerf is all about efficiency and the numbers.
Previously, you could spam Crystal Nova carelessly in the lane and not really have to worry about whether or not you hit both heroes in the lane. If you hit one, good. If you hit both, better. But, with a huge manacost increase at level 1, Crystal Maiden will need to be careful about spamming Crystal Nova from now on. Hitting just one hero just won’t cut it anymore. Each nuke has to hit both heroes in the lane now, otherwise, it’d be much more efficient to skill Frostbite instead, which will only bring us back to the age-old inefficient, out-of-meta playstyle of Crystal Maiden.
The latest dota gameplay update was more about pulling back some heroes that got a little bit too efficient, while also buffing a few others who’re far too situational. Overall, it’s a good thing. After all, it’s probably going to be the last patch until The International 2018, and it’d be a shame if not every hero was viable or pick-worthy.
While we’re not saying that every hero should be picked now — although the likelihood of that happening just increased with the latest patch — it’s safe to say that we’re going to have a really diverse meta at TI8 this August.
What do you think of the latest dota gameplay update? Do you think it’s the latest update we’ll see until the end of The International 2018? Be sure to let us know your thoughts in the comments down below.