Skulz's Dota Competitive Hero Tier List April 2019 - 7.21d patch

Skulz's Dota Competitive Hero Tier List April 2019 - 7.21d patch

The Dota 2 Competitive Hero Tier List for April 2019 includes data from OGA Dota PIT Minor, for a total of 328 games played during patch 7.21d.

  • All heroes are arranged in five tiers based on their draft rate. The tiers are viewed as clusters of data, and each hero is placed in the one they are closer the most.

  • The requisites for each tier never change. The goal is offering a neutral comparison that shows how the meta evolves over time.

  • The win rate has no effect on the tiers, but is included for further info. The tiers depend only on drafts (picks + bans), and aren't affected either by the win rate of a hero, or by their performance in pub matches.

This tier list contains all pro matches played from April 1st to 29th morning during patch 7.21d, including OGA Dota PIT Minor.

Past Tier List: March 2019

More: All the Dota 2 Tier Lists

Quick links

Tier 1 - Tier 2 - Tier 3 - Tier 4 - Tier 5

All the tables are responsive and sortable. If you are using a phone, turn it sideways for a full view. Otherwise, zoom in or click the grey area of each table to swipe and sort them.

Tier 1

Hero Name P+B P+B% Picks Picks% Bans Bans% Win%
Nyx Assassin 281 85.7% 82 25.0% 199 60.7% 57.3%
Enigma 275 83.8% 46 14.0% 229 69.8% 60.9%
Razor 275 83.8% 83 25.3% 192 58.5% 48.2%
Oracle 258 78.7% 82 25.0% 176 53.7% 47.6%
Doom 232 70.7% 95 29.0% 137 41.8% 52.6%
Morphling 216 65.9% 62 18.9% 154 47.0% 51.6%
Dark Seer 213 64.9% 81 24.7% 132 40.2% 55.6%
Outworld Devourer 201 61.3% 60 18.3% 141 43.0% 46.7%
Troll Warlord 187 57.0% 67 20.4% 120 36.6% 58.2%
Lifestealer 182 55.5% 69 21.0% 113 34.5% 46.4%

Tier 2

Hero Name P+B P+B% Picks Picks% Bans Bans% Win%
Medusa 157 47.9% 63 19.2% 94 28.7% 54.0%
Brewmaster 155 47.3% 63 19.2% 92 28.1% 44.4%
Nature's Prophet 152 46.3% 67 20.4% 85 25.9% 38.8%
Ember Spirit 151 46.0% 72 22.0% 79 24.1% 59.7%
Juggernaut 143 43.6% 59 18.0% 84 25.6% 40.7%
Vengeful Spirit 142 43.3% 80 24.4% 62 18.9% 40.0%
Winter Wyvern 141 43.0% 82 25.0% 59 18.0% 51.2%
Batrider 140 42.7% 37 11.3% 103 31.4% 27.0%
Shadow Shaman 134 40.9% 81 24.7% 53 16.2% 43.2%
Earth Spirit 129 39.3% 68 20.7% 61 18.6% 48.5%
Earthshaker 128 39.0% 76 23.2% 52 15.9% 59.2%

The themes of the 7.2x patch, explained in January and February, are still the same. The successive versions balanced a few overused heroes, but the meta didn’t change a lot during the past months.

Overall, this is a great patch and one of the most balanced ones we had in a long time, but I am still looking forward to a new one to shake the meta because we already enjoyed several DPC events based on 7.20 and 7.21.

  • Almost every hero is viable and there aren’t really overpowered ones as many of them could potentially gain the spotlight and reach tier 1 and 2.

  • Over the past months, the laning phase increased in importance, and winning it has become fundamental for the outcome of the match.

  • Comebacks are always possible, but the higher your rank, the bigger the impact of the laning phase on the final victory. This is particularly true for competitive games.

Position 4 Nyx for lane pressure

Nyx Assassin ascended to the top of our tiers and became one of the most contested heroes by pro players because he is a great pick to secure the laning phase.

Nyx is the hero with the highest health regeneration in the game (3.25), on par with Ogre Magi. He doesn’t have a lot of attack damage - 46-50 at level 1 - but this is more than sufficient in the long run because with a few Mangoes he is able to out-harass the lane opponent and push him away from the experience zone.

He works well both in a duo and a trilane. Generally, a well-played trilane with Nyx will endanger so much the opponents that they will be forced to rotate a support to help, giving an easier time to your other lanes.

Skill Build

Below, the most popular skill builds used on Nyx Assassin in competitive games during April.

Nyx Assassin’s skill builds in April 2019 - DatDota

Nyx Assassin’s skill builds in April 2019 - DatDota

The build that prioritizes Spiked Carapace is slightly more popular, but the one with Impale has a higher win rate.

Note that both of them are viable and their efficiency depends on the situation considered. We are not comparing hundreds of games, so these values are not 100% trustworthy as the win rate with such a low number of games is influenced by the teams playing, their strategies, item builds, and opponents.

  • The reasoning behind the popularity of Spiked Carapace during the laning phase is its cheap cost. For only 40 mana it negates and reflects damage, and stuns the opponent for a respectable amount of time (0.6/1.2/1.8/2.4 seconds), which gives your lane teammates the chance to attack them without suffering any backlash.

  • Impale is particularly strong versus multiple opponents and a for a more roaming-oriented gameplay. Similarly to Sand King’s Burrowstrike, a well-placed stun is able to hit several enemies at once. It is an amazing ability to stack on top of other stuns, so if your carry or position 5 support have a reliable stun, you should follow up with yours to maximize the time the target is stuck in place.

  • Generally, it is not worth to level up Mana Burn in the early game. It might be useful only if you are fighting against an opponent with a lot of intelligence and a big mana pool, such as Outworld Devourer, Skywrath Mage, and Pugna.

Nyx’s impact after the laning phase

Nyx Assassin doesn’t really require items to do his job, but I still do not recommend him as a position 5. You should play him mainly as a position 4, and depending on your rank he might work well also as a not greedy position 3.

He lacks the farming capabilities to be a good position 3 or higher. Buying Hand of Midas will delay your core items and reduce your impact on the game as you aren’t really a late game hero.

In the late game, you are mostly the scout of the team. Once maxed out, Vendetta gives you invisibility and extra movement speed basically permanently. Being able to spot the opponents and know their moves is a big deal in a competitive environment, and Nyx excels at it.

You can scout the enemy side of the map, find out where the carry is farming, break smokes, and detect Roshan’s attempts.

This is a viable gameplay only with an adequate item build and a certain game experience: you need mobility items to not turn into food for the opponents, but you must also know which places of the map are safer to scout as overextending or entering in areas under the enemy’s vision will result in a death.

Writhing Executioner loading screen for Nyx Assassin - Valve

Writhing Executioner loading screen for Nyx Assassin - Valve

Most bought items

The list doesn’t include consumables and basic items.

  • Magic Wand - 45

  • Arcane Boots - 33

  • Tranquil boots - 32

  • Blink Dagger - 28

  • Eul’s Scepter of Divinity - 28

  • Urn of Shadows - 27

  • Force Staff - 21

  • Spirit Vessel - 14

  • Aghanim’s Scepter - 12

  • Ghost Scepter - 11

  • Meteor Hammer - 10

  • Aether Lens - 7

Blink Dagger is undoubtedly the best item you can buy on Nyx because of the added survivability and the chance to secure a perfect placement in ganks and team fights, thus potentially stunning several enemies at once with Impale. Note that if you are attacked while Carapace is active, the Blink Dagger isn’t disabled because technically your hero received no damage (similarly to the interaction with Templar Assassin’s Refraction).

Eul’s Scepter, Force Staff, and Ghost Scepter contribute to Nyx’s survivability and mobility. Particularly, I love Eul’s Scepter because you tend to spam spells with this hero, and this item solves all your mana issues. Patch 7.20 also increased Eul’s mana regeneration bonus from 2.25 to 5.

Urn of Shadows isn’t a strictly necessary item on Nyx Assassin, but it is an optimal choice considering his roaming capabilities. Every team requires one, so if there isn’t a better Urn carrier, you should get it.

Spirit Vessel is a great upgrade in most games as its active ability Soul Release reduces the enemy health by 5% of current health per second, and reduces HP regeneration and healing by 70%. If we take a look at the most drafted heroes in this meta, there are many picks who can be countered by this ability, such as Doom, Morphling, Lifestealer, Medusa, Winter Wyvern.

Meteor Hammer is one of the best extensions. The stun of Impale has a 2.8 seconds duration once maxed out and the Hammer has a 2.5 seconds channeling time, so it is quite hard to miss it if you activate it promptly. You are able to keep one or more opponents in place for about 5 seconds. Nyx also misses any form of wave clearing ability, so Meteor Hammer helps to push creeps, damage building, and farm extra gold.

Aghanim’s Scepter is a luxury item, but it is of great help during team fights and sieges because it increases your health and mana regeneration, decreases incoming damage by 40%, increases the range of all your spells, and reduces the cooldown of Impale.

It is particularly strong if combined with Aether Lens as you are able to hit enemies from a very long distance, becoming a huge nuisance in sieges. You can sit safely just outside the enemy’s range and Mana Burn/Impale them constantly. This tactic is completely safe as long as the opponents do not have a hero like Pudge and Vengeful Spirit (the latter is quite popular in pro games).

Cursed Zealot loading screen for Nyx Assassin - Valve

Cursed Zealot loading screen for Nyx Assassin - Valve

In the name of Queen Nyx, do not buy Dagon

Item wise, I want to point out that if we look at the pub stats on Dotabuff, Dagon is one of the most bought items on Nyx, while in pro games no players purchased it during April.

  • Dagon Nyx is mostly successful at lower ranks where the players do not know how to act against it, so he has the chance to roam undisturbed around the map and get many kills in solo.

  • At higher ranks and in a competitive environment, this build is remarkably weak because as soon as you start becoming a threat, the opponent team will behave accordingly, making your life impossible.

Moreover, Dagon Nyx reaches his power spike in the mid game. Afterwards, he isn’t able to pull off solo kills anymore as the enemies get stronger and stronger, have utility items and more health points, and start moving together. If you are against a coordinated team, or if you buy Dagon too late, you will just annoy them in the mid game and become totally useless in the late game.

Dagon is one of the least cost-efficient items - it scales horribly because it requires 1,250 gold for 100 extra damage - and Nyx is also one of the worst farmers in the game. Overall, Meme Hammer is always a better choice on Nyx.

Nyx in pubs

Nyx’s pick and win rate are better at higher ranks: at 5K+ he achieves a 14% pick rate and a 53.5% win rate.

The hero doesn’t perform as well at lower ranks because he requires lots of teamwork to have an impact before level six. Bluntly, most players at Legend and below just leech experience during the laning phase, wait to get level six in order to unlock Vendetta, and then start roaming.

The roaming phase might be successful or not, but that’s not the main problem: as a support, you are not contesting the farm of the enemy safe/off laner, providing almost no impact during the early game. Considering the importance of the lanes in this meta, your behaviour might easily lead to the defeat of the team.

Nyx as a mid laner

I warmly recommend to not play Nyx as a mid hero. His matchup in lane is extremely dependant on the draft, but generally the opponent mid laner will always outfarm Nyx because he farms too slowly. Also, you don’t want to stay in lane and farm, but your goal must be ganking and helping the lanes with the real carries.

Just give up on mid Nyx as you are just wasting a precious slot. Yes, you could pick him and max out Mana Burn when fighting versus an intelligence-based hero such as OD, Pugna, Skywrath, Storm Spirit, etc., but you are not going to have a great impact on this position anyway.

Luckily, Nyx Assassin isn’t played anymore as a mid laner in pubs. According to the data, he has a pick rate going from 0.2% to 0.5% on this position, depending on the MMR considered.

Tier 3

Hero Name P+B P+B% Picks Picks% Bans Bans% Win%
Bane 107 32.6% 66 20.1% 41 12.5% 56.1%
Terrorblade 98 29.9% 43 13.1% 55 16.8% 48.8%
Tiny 95 29.0% 60 18.3% 35 10.7% 50.0%
Leshrac 93 28.4% 50 15.2% 43 13.1% 60.0%
Rubick 92 28.1% 65 19.8% 27 8.2% 38.5%
Ursa 90 27.4% 38 11.6% 52 15.9% 39.5%
Lina 86 26.2% 49 14.9% 37 11.3% 44.9%
Templar Assassin 84 25.6% 38 11.6% 46 14.0% 76.3%
Queen of Pain 80 24.4% 34 10.4% 46 14.0% 52.9%
Kunkka 80 24.4% 39 11.9% 41 12.5% 41.0%
Sand King 79 24.1% 47 14.3% 32 9.8% 55.3%
Magnus 77 23.5% 22 6.7% 55 16.8% 63.6%
Pangolier 76 23.2% 38 11.6% 38 11.6% 42.1%
Centaur Warrunner 71 21.7% 54 16.5% 17 5.2% 48.2%
Naga Siren 70 21.3% 16 4.9% 54 16.5% 56.3%

Tier 4

Hero Name P+B P+B% Picks Picks% Bans Bans% Win%
Keeper of the Light 67 20.4% 35 10.7% 32 9.8% 57.1%
Spectre 67 20.4% 38 11.6% 29 8.8% 42.1%
Tidehunter 64 19.5% 26 7.9% 38 11.6% 42.3%
Abaddon 63 19.2% 38 11.6% 25 7.6% 44.7%
Disruptor 63 19.2% 51 15.6% 12 3.7% 52.9%
Monkey King 62 18.9% 29 8.8% 33 10.1% 51.7%
Beastmaster 62 18.9% 33 10.1% 29 8.8% 66.7%
Death Prophet 61 18.6% 24 7.3% 37 11.3% 37.5%
Lone Druid 60 18.3% 14 4.3% 46 14.0% 35.7%
Shadow Fiend 60 18.3% 28 8.5% 32 9.8% 50.0%
Sven 58 17.7% 41 12.5% 17 5.2% 56.1%
Puck 58 17.7% 27 8.2% 31 9.5% 25.9%
Jakiro 57 17.4% 49 14.9% 8 2.4% 59.2%
Drow Ranger 55 16.8% 25 7.6% 30 9.2% 52.0%
Pugna 54 16.5% 13 4.0% 41 12.5% 30.8%
Wraith King 50 15.2% 31 9.5% 19 5.8% 54.8%
Bounty Hunter 49 14.9% 18 5.5% 31 9.5% 38.9%
Phantom Assassin 48 14.6% 27 8.2% 21 6.4% 51.9%
Necrophos 48 14.6% 29 8.8% 19 5.8% 37.9%
Lycan 46 14.0% 14 4.3% 32 9.8% 35.7%
Night Stalker 45 13.7% 17 5.2% 28 8.5% 35.3%
Phantom Lancer 41 12.5% 19 5.8% 22 6.7% 42.1%
Venomancer 40 12.2% 20 6.1% 20 6.1% 60.0%
Grimstroke 37 11.3% 25 7.6% 12 3.7% 40.0%
Omniknight 37 11.3% 21 6.4% 16 4.9% 71.4%
Anti-Mage 37 11.3% 13 4.0% 24 7.3% 61.5%
Dark Willow 33 10.1% 23 7.0% 10 3.1% 52.2%
Undying 33 10.1% 24 7.3% 9 2.7% 54.2%
Weaver 30 9.2% 16 4.9% 14 4.3% 68.8%
Dragon Knight 30 9.2% 23 7.0% 7 2.1% 52.2%
Slardar 30 9.2% 15 4.6% 15 4.6% 60.0%
Tusk 29 8.8% 24 7.3% 5 1.5% 33.3%
Clockwerk 29 8.8% 11 3.4% 18 5.5% 45.5%
Lion 29 8.8% 27 8.2% 2 0.6% 63.0%
Timbersaw 27 8.2% 12 3.7% 15 4.6% 58.3%
Witch Doctor 26 7.9% 26 7.9% 0 0.0% 46.2%
Viper 24 7.3% 10 3.1% 14 4.3% 30.0%
Phoenix 22 6.7% 17 5.2% 5 1.5% 47.1%
Sniper 21 6.4% 9 2.7% 12 3.7% 44.4%
Storm Spirit 21 6.4% 18 5.5% 3 0.9% 44.4%
Legion Commander 19 5.8% 14 4.3% 5 1.5% 50.0%
Mirana 18 5.5% 17 5.2% 1 0.3% 64.7%

In tier 4 and 5 we find all the situational heroes. They are strong when paired with others, or against specific lineups. These heroes aren't bad, they just don't work in every game, so the pick and ban rates aren't outstanding.

Tier 5

Hero Name P+B P+B% Picks Picks% Bans Bans% Win%
Invoker 16 4.9% 11 3.4% 5 1.5% 63.6%
Enchantress 16 4.9% 5 1.5% 11 3.4% 60.0%
Lich 15 4.6% 12 3.7% 3 0.9% 66.7%
Axe 15 4.6% 11 3.4% 4 1.2% 45.5%
Dazzle 14 4.3% 7 2.1% 7 2.1% 42.9%
Alchemist 13 4.0% 9 2.7% 4 1.2% 33.3%
Elder Titan 12 3.7% 8 2.4% 4 1.2% 50.0%
Shadow Demon 12 3.7% 11 3.4% 1 0.3% 36.4%
Chaos Knight 11 3.4% 8 2.4% 3 0.9% 75.0%
Pudge 10 3.1% 4 1.2% 6 1.8% 75.0%
Underlord 9 2.7% 6 1.8% 3 0.9% 83.3%
Chen 9 2.7% 3 0.9% 6 1.8% 33.3%
Ogre Magi 8 2.4% 8 2.4% 0 0.0% 62.5%
Faceless Void 8 2.4% 5 1.5% 3 0.9% 40.0%
Meepo 7 2.1% 2 0.6% 5 1.5% 100%
Arc Warden 6 1.8% 4 1.2% 2 0.6% 50.0%
Gyrocopter 6 1.8% 5 1.5% 1 0.3% 20.0%
Huskar 6 1.8% 1 0.3% 5 1.5% 100%
Bristleback 5 1.5% 3 0.9% 2 0.6% 66.7%
Ancient Apparition 4 1.2% 4 1.2% 0 0.0% 25.0%
Warlock 4 1.2% 4 1.2% 0 0.0% 75.0%
Riki 4 1.2% 3 0.9% 1 0.3% 33.3%
Crystal Maiden 4 1.2% 4 1.2% 0 0.0% 25.0%
Silencer 3 0.9% 3 0.9% 0 0.0% 66.7%
Spirit Breaker 3 0.9% 3 0.9% 0 0.0% 33.3%
Luna 3 0.9% 3 0.9% 0 0.0% 66.7%
Slark 2 0.6% 1 0.3% 1 0.3% 0.0%
Broodmother 2 0.6% 1 0.3% 1 0.3% 100%
Tinker 2 0.6% 0 0.0% 2 0.6% -
Windranger 2 0.6% 1 0.3% 1 0.3% 100%
Bloodseeker 2 0.6% 2 0.6% 0 0.0% 50.0%
Skywrath Mage 1 0.3% 1 0.3% 0 0.0% 100%
Visage 1 0.3% 1 0.3% 0 0.0% 0.0%
Zeus 1 0.3% 1 0.3% 0 0.0% 0.0%

Heroes not drafted

Io and Mars are currently not available in captains mode.

 
 

Next Tier List: May 2019

Header image (Sect of Kaktos loading screen for Nyx Assassin) and hero icons: Valve - Statistics: DatDota

Vincenzo is an esports writer with five years of experience. Former head editor for Natus Vincere, he has produced content for DreamHack, FACEIT, DOTAFire, 2P, and more. Follow him on Twitter and Facebook.