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Saturday, June 21, 2008

What's Up with DotA 6.53

I just found this post in DotA All Stars forum regarding rumored changes in DotA 6.53:

6.53 Changelog (for selected heroes)

*Conjure Image illusions changed to 100% damage at lvl 4
*Sunder range increased to 600 all lvls, cooldown 30 seconds all levels
*Soul Steal removed and replaced by wind walk

Purist Thunderwrath
*Purification is now allowed during Repel/Avatar (to prevent teamkill abuse)
*Degen Aura changed to periodic entangle
*Guardian Angel changes units into flying, non-collision (to better suit the name)

*Lich bounce given AI program to increase hero target acquisition
*-Micro CF option available at hero selection of Lich (Warning: Very difficult, needs excellent micro)

*Huskar Burning Spears effect now allowed on target buildings
*Inner Vitality changed to innate passive

*EDF now gives prior bonuses and damage effects as previous dragons
*EDF model size tripled and destroys nearby trees
*Dragon Tail changed to Storm bolt with same duration (to prevent whiners who complain of range)

*Acid Spray now has duration effect of 30 seconds
*Unstable Concoction casting time is always 2 seconds (to prevent abuse of Alchemist while channeling)

*Wolves now do siege-type damage
*Wolves given immolation and 2 inventory slots (Rules for Syllabear's Bear apply)
*Wolves duration changed to 10 minutes

Skeleton King
*Reincarnation mana cost changed to 0 (to prevent abuse of Necronomicon 3 and NA)

*Infest now works on Int heroes

*Armlet now upgradable item (up to 4 times)

*Return now does Divine-type Damage

*Necrolyte removed from -XL, -RD (to prevent Maelk abuse)

Considering these changes, here are my comments.

TB will be IMBA with the 100% damaging images and windwalk. OMG. With 30 sec cooldown Sunder (+ 600 range), he will be feared even more hereafter. No need of Lothar's for him anymore. Get low health, WW, swap n kill any enemy. XD. In my opinion, this will make TB a real ganker, and an even better carry hero. I look forward to see TB more in competitive DotA tournaments, once the map get stable.

The reprogrammed Lich's ulti will be a real pain too. Now people won't hesitate to use it even when you are surrounded with creeps I guess. Let's see how this works out.

SK will be another real pain. With 0 mana for Reincarnation, Mana Burning won't help you to take him down. I hate to go against this hero, 'cos I got to kill him twice to score the kill :(

Infest now works on Int heroes
I wonder what this will result in. Currently, when you infest, you kill the unit and gain HP. But when you put this on a hero, what will that do? :S

Armlet now upgradable item (up to 4 times)
And what will be upgraded is the question. ASPD improvement will make this item real worth. How about the Unholy Strength (Active) of the item? Would that be upgraded too? If so, would the damage taken will be increased or decreased? I don't see this item much in current games. In my personal opinion, this could be worth for N'aix. With his LifeSteal, the damage from Unholy Strength would barely touch him.

Necrolyte removed from -XL, -RD (to prevent Maelk abuse)

LOL. Go MYM GO !!!! Now the MYM even affects how DotA Map is created :P

GG boyz.
Disclaimer : These are rumored changes. I have no guarantee about these stuff. Check out the original post given above.

Friday, June 20, 2008

A Note about "Stacking"

Another area in which DotA players get confused is the problem about "stacking" items. I personally have had many arguments with DotA players about these stacking issues. The content which I post here are well researched, so I take the responsibility of what I state here, and I have valid evidence ;).

First of all, a notice about people who are keen to research on this. Most web sites and forums have posts with fake information, stating that some of items stack, but those are posts done by people who are not aware about these issues. Please make sure that the source you are referring to contains valid information. In most web sites, the user comments say that some items stack, but if you were keen to read all the comments, most probably down the line you will encounter someone who is well aware about these issues will comment that it is not.

I am not going to talk about stacking Orb Effect items here because I discussed about orb effects in the previous post. You may refer to this post for information regarding orb effects.

Ok, lets begin with Evasion. For your information, Evasion does not stack at all. Yes, that means if you have two butterfly's, it won't give you 60% evasion. It will give you only 30% evasion. But it will increase your ASPD by another 60%. And this includes hero skills such as Blur (Mortred, which gives you 28% evasion at level 4) and other items such as Radiance, which gives you 15% evasion. The rule is, the item / skill with highest evasion will override others. So if you make a Butterfly for Mortred, don't expect to have 58% percent evasion. You will simply have 30% given by the Butterfly.

So other than the increased attack speed of 60% (30% + 30 Agility), + 30 damage (by +30 primary), butterfly will only give Mortred 2% additional evasion, for 6250 gold. For that amount, there are better items to make for her. Also, instead of making double butterfly, consider spending that 6250 gold on something which will give you more value.

If you feel I am wrong, check out the official DotA-All Stars website discussion about this matter.

However, skills that act similar to Evasion will stack diminishingly. For example, Backtrack of Faceless Void will stack with Evasion from Butterfly or Radiance. Because Backtrack is NOT evasion, it will take place along side with evasion, if evasion fails to miss a certain hit. I will explain about diminishing returns later in this post.

Ok, now lets consider LifeSteal. Orb effect based LifeSteal items will not stack, considering the rule of "Orb Effects Do Not Stack". However LifeSteal Aura's will stack with Orb based LifeSteal items. For example, Vladmir's Offering will stack with another LifeSteal item such as Helm of Dominator. Same goes for aura based life steal skills such as Vampiric Aura of Skeliton King, and Feast of N'aix.

Cleaving attack, by items such as Battlefury and some passive hero skills (Tidehunter's Anchor Smash, Magnus....), stacks directly with another item / skill etc. So having two Battlefury's will result in 70% cleaving attack.

Melee Damage Return, provided by Blaid Mail stacks with each other directly. So having multiple Blaid Mails will allow the attacker to get more damage returned.

Critical attack, given by items such as Crystallis, Buriza-do Kyanon will not stack with each other or with passive skills of heroes such as Mortred and Yunero. If you build this item for those heroes , you will see multiple critical numbers in screen when you hit a double critical, but only the damage from the last critical will take place. However, the chances of triggering a critical attack will stack diminishingly. For more information, refer to this post.

Magic Damage Resistance, provided by Planeswalkers Cloak, Hood of Defiance and passive skills of certain heroes like Magina, will stack diminishingly but on the basis of acquirement. For example, if you level up the Magina's skill first and then buy a cloak or a HoD, it will not stack. In order to have the item and skill to stack, you need to buy the item first and then level up the skill (I think this is one place where DotA bugs became a feature :P). Also you have to note that every hero has a 25% Magic Damage resistence by default. You will need to take it also into account when you are calculating the total magic damage resistance. However, having two HoDs or mixing HoD with a cloak will not stack.

Bash, given by the Cranium Basher and some passive skills of heroes such as Faceless Void, Troll Warlord, Barathroom will stack with each other diminishingly.

Ok, not its time to find out what the heck is diminishing return.

Calculating Diminishing Returns

Diminishing return is calculated by the following formula.

1 - ( 1 - A ) * ( 1 - B ) * ( 1 - C ) .... ( 1 - X )

Where A, B, C are the percentages of chances.

Let's consider an example. Think of a Faceless Void, with Level 4 Time Lock (25% chance to Bash) with a Cranium Basher (15% chance to bash).

We can calculate the total chance of scoring a bash like this:

Total = 1 - (1 - 0.25) * ( 1 - 0.15) = 0.3625

So this means there's a 36.5% chance to score a bash.

If Void gets another Cranium Basher (L4 Time Lock + 2x Bashers):

Total = 1 - (1 - 0.25) * ( 1 - 0.15) * ( 1 - 0.15) = 0.458125

So this means there's a 45.8% chance to score a bash.

Let's consider another example. Consider a Magina, who has acquired a Hood of Defiance, and properly upgraded his Spell Resistance to Level 4 (See section on Magic Damage Reduction to find out about proper way to upgrade Spell Resistance with HoD).

His total percentage of Magic Damage Reduction is : 25% Natural Hero Reduction + 30% from Hood of Defiance and 40% from his skill.

Total = 1 - (1 - 0.25) * (1 - 0.30) * (1-0.40) = 0.685

That is, he has 68.5% Magic Damage Reduction. Now if a Lion hits him with his L3 Ultimate (850 Damage), he will take only 267.75 damage, which will be further reduced by Armor.

Ok, I think this post about "stacking" helped you to clear out some myths about DotA. I recommend reading following articles:

How the Stack / Non-Stack item works?
The HitchHikers Guide to DotA


Wednesday, June 18, 2008

A Note About Orb Effects

Most of DotA players get confused about the famous quote "Orb Effects Do Not Stack", because even though the quote is true for most orb effects, there are exceptions for it. Some people build multiple orb effect items without knowing, or to gain other advantages of the item, or simply forgetting about the orb effects. I thought of putting up this post about the orb effects and their priorities, so that it would help out the DotA players to clear out their doubts regarding the matter.

Let's begin with the Orb Effects Priority Table (Click to enlarge)

This table simply says it all (If you are confused why there's a Cold Attack : Ranged for Melee heroes, just bear with me, I will explain why later on).

As you can see, LifeSteal has highest priority than all other item orb effects. So if you have a Helm Of Dominator (Life Steal) and a Sange & Yasha (Maim), you will get only LifeSteal. Maim will not happen due to its lower priority than LifeSteal (which led to confusion few days back, just try it, it's true).

However, some orb effects have priority according to it's place in the inventory. The item which is in the higher slot will override the other orb effect (slot priority is higher for upper rows, and with in same row, its left to right). For example, if you have a Stygian Desolator (Corruption) and a Maelstrom (Chain Lightning), the place of the item determines which orb effect will take place.

Nevertheless, the story gets little complicated when it comes to Eye of Skadi. Eye of Skadi for melee heroes is an orb effect, and it goes like the rest of the orb effects. However, Eye of Skadi for Ranged Heroes is NOT AN ORB EFFECT. Yes, you heard me right. Its NOT. Instead, it's a debuff placed on attack, so it stacks with some other orb effects, which will not place a debuff on the attack.

For history lovers and tech maniacs, DotA was programmed in such a way that only a single debuff could be placed on an attack, so multiple debuffs cannot take place with a single attack.

So as you can see, if you are a ranged hero and you have an EoS with Satanic, both Life Steal and Cold Attack will take place, as Life Steal is not a debuff. If the hero has a Maelstorm, the debuff will be placed only when Chain Lightning occurs, so when Chain Lightning occurs, it will override the Cold Attack. However, in other attacks, Cold Attack will take place.

Things get even more interesting when it comes to Feedback with a ranged EoS. As the table says, if the target has mana, Feedback will take place, and if the target has no mana, cold attack will take place. So this means, if you hit a melee creep, cold attack will occur, but if you hit a ranged creep or a hero, feedback will occur. Now for those who think that I made a mistake by saying "hero", here's my explanation. As we all know, heroes have a HP regen and a Mana regen. With the heroe's mana regen, the chances of having a hero with zero Mana is so low that it will never happen. Before you make the next attack, 99% of the time, hero will regain at least a single mana point. So in practice, it will not work.

Finally, here's a word about having Cold Attack : Ranged on Melee heroes and Cold Attack : Melee on ranged heroes. If you haven't figured it out yet, think about heroes like Terrorblade or Troll Warlord. Those heroes can switch between melee and ranged modes. So it matters to such heroes. However, take notice that the "type" of Cold Attack is not determined by the current mode of the hero. It depends on the mode of the hero which was when he picked up EoS. For example, if a Terrorblade picks up EoS in Melee mode, it's a Cold Attack : Melee. Even if he transforms to ranged afterwards, it will still be a Melee Cold Attack, vice versa.

This took me about 30 minutes to write down. But it took so long to find out these stuff. So I believe my effort would help out DotA maniacs out there to play a better game.


Update (03-June-2008):

Hero Orb Effect Skills Table (Click to enlarge)

Monday, June 16, 2008

Time for Sweet memories......

I just found out these videos.. Check them out..
Hope this help you guys think.. and remember things happened to you in DoTA..
And This might help all of you get the message, that words aren't capable of :D

1. Don't DOs in DoTA
2. Art of Mindgaming in DoTA