The big winners of 7.01

With the arrival of The New Journey, the nerf and buff cycle continues in Dota land. This time it’s more complex than before, adding in Talent Trees; this not only adds in a lot of diversity in those choices but also in the item choices made by players on their heroes. Highlighted today will be 2 heroes and their different item builds combined with talents, and explaining what makes them such big winners of the patch, despite the win rate.

Ember Spirit

Ember Spirit Ember Spirit was in a weird place before 7.00, having quite a low winrate in pubs, as well as not being seen on the pro scene. However, this has all changed after 7.01. How? Talents. Having excellent talent choices which complement his skillset well (15% spell damage amplification) as well as shorter cooldowns (15% cooldown reduction) make a spell damage build a very viable one.  
Featuring items like  Veil of Discord,  Blink Dagger,  Radiance and  Octarine Core, this makes him not only pretty tanky in the early and midgame, but also a fast powerhouse as opposed to the pre 7.00 Ember, requiring quite a build-up to be effective. To top his immense strength in the early and midgame, his level 25 talent gives him +2 second duration to Searing Chains Searing Chains. Combine that with Octarine, and you got yourself a perma-root (5 second duration, 5.1 second cooldown). 
His winrate is surely something to write home about. There’s a disparity in win rates between 2k and 5k. In the 2k bracket there’s a lack of patch knowledge, most likely, and the lacking mechanical level to play him to his full potential, putting him at a subpar 45% win rate. But, in the 5k+ bracket, his winrate is up to a stellar 54%, being up there with the pubstompers like Treant Protector Treant Protector and  Underlord. The biggest thing to mention is his rise in winrate %: from the 23rd of December till 23rd of January, his win rate increased by 4,32% in every skill bracket.
Ember Spirit's win rate in the past 30 days - Picture courtesy of Dotabuff
Last but not least: what lane do I play Ember Spirit Ember in? Well, stranger, mid lane. He needs to fight early and can fight with as much as only a veil. His (overall) lane winrate explains this all too well. A presence of 57% in the midlane and a 48% win rate, it’s the superior lane compared to the safelane, boasting only a 42,8% win rate and a 34% presence. Competitively, the hero has found its stride once again, becoming a top tier pick and ban in recent games with this specific build and playstyle. Seeing the winrate, he has definitely cemented himself in pro play for the patch with excellent play in recent tournaments.


One of the biggest resurges seen in recent play is Meepo Meepo. Having received huge buffs, this makes the hero a nightmare in high MMR pubs. Despite only having a 50,55% winrate in 5k+ brackets, everyone is banning the hero in their games. Purely based on winrate, the hero should be subpar. It’s hard to compare Meepo to any other hero given the nature of the Geomancer and the enormous skill cap he has, naturally giving him a lower win rate than most heroes. 
We still consider him one of the biggest winners of the patch due to his immense changes, and Icefrog may possibly buff him even more given purely the pub statistics. If not banned or dealt with correctly, he can be a huge issue, especially in pub games, considering there is a lot less teamwork than in professional games. Why? Let’s take a look at the changes made to him in 7.00:
  • Meepo clones now share full attributes without Aghanim's Scepter.
  • Earthbind Earthbind no longer interrupts channeling spells (it previously did on initial cast but not refresh).
  • Meepo strength gain reduced from 1.6 to 1.3


Picture courtesy of
The first is immediately the biggest one. Before this, Meepo was a lot easier to kill given the right heroes just by going on a clone. Now, it doesn’t matter what Meepo you go on as they all have the same stats, which also makes it a lot harder to kill him given he can survive longer to call in his buddies or just poof out. This basically means about 400HP extra on every Meepo except the main one with the popular item build consisting of 2x  Dragon Lance. Despite his strength gain being reduced, the full attribute buff completely negates this nerf and makes him even stronger and potentially a nightmare in high level pubs. 
Another big (maybe indirect) buff to Meepo is the new root mechanic: having 4x Earthbind Earthbind, basically 4 roots, makes it very hard for heroes like Storm Spirit to quickly escape Meepo's hold.
His talents are extremely good. At level 10 all Meepos get a +15 damage bonus, at level 15 they get lifesteal equivalent to  Vladmir's Offering, which amounts to 2275 gold in net worth. At level 20 a free  Hyperstone +5 attack speed, and to top that off, a free 400hp bonus at level 25, making his tree one of the best trees in the game given the buffs he has also received.
Meepo's talent usage - Picture courtesy of Dotabuff
The usual 7.01 Meepo build consists of  Boots of Travel, 2 or more Dragon Lances and then you build into whatever is necessary for the game. Be it an  Eye of Skadi, a  Scythe of Vyse or an  Ethereal Blade - it’s all about the stats, to make yourself as durable and tough as possible. 
Competitively, the hero for now remains a niche pick, having only seen a few picks and bans here and there. However, the meta isn’t decided immediately and Meepo will surely receive some love in the pro scene, considering he can win games on his own if left to his own devices, considering the kind of hero Meepo is. Why are they such big winners? All these changes to the heroes explained, make them so much more viable than before, rendering Ember Spirit Ember and Meepo Meepo a staple in the pub scene, as well as marking Ember’s return to the competitive scene, giving you more room to diversify your draft.
Source: Statistics courtesy of Dotabuff
AuthorHeynDota Date26 January 2017, 15:31 Views18297 Comments0
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