We analyzed the strengths of the new Monkey King Bar (MKB) and the differences with the old one. The number of hits and the damage against units/buildings are calculated separately.
First, let’s have a look at the bonuses and passives of the two versions.
- Bonus: +66 damage
- Passive: True Strike
- +35% chance to proc 160 magic damage and mini stun for 0.01 seconds
True Strike attacks cannot be missed or evaded, and ignore evasion and blinds.
Bonus: +60 attack speed
Pierce grants each attack a 75% chance to pierce through evasion and deal 60 bonus pure damage.
Attacks which proc Pierce cannot miss.
Illusions can bypass evasion but won’t benefit from the bonus damage.
The Pierce proc chances won’t increase buying multiple MKB, instead it works together with the Javelin’s effect.
The damage dealt by Pierce can’t crit or cleave, but lifesteal works on it.
Only works versus units, not against buildings or wards.
Number of Hits
The new MKB is better against enemies with less than 34% evasion
In the graph below, there is a comparison between the old and the new MKB, and how many hits per second they inflict against an opponent with 0%, 25%, 50%, and 100% evasion.
It examines different values of attack speed prior the purchase of the MKB, from 20 to 540. Note that 600 is the maximum attack speed attainable in the game.
The new Monkey King Bar will always hit more times than the old one, from 0% to 25% evasion, thanks to the improved attack speed. The exact value below which the new MKB is better is 34%.
Only starting from 320 attack speed the old MKB can inflict a greater number of hits to enemies that have over 50% evasion.
In the majority of games, the new Monkey King Bar will hit the opponents more times than the old one.
The Butterfly only grants 35% evasion, so against heroes that don’t have other sources of this passive ability, both versions of the MKB will be similarly efficient.
Phantom Assassin is the only big issue as Blur gives up to 50% evasion once maxed, and 75% if she takes the level 25 talent. In this case, the old MKB will always be the superior choice.
The old MKB was stronger damage-wise in most cases
In the following graph, we use as a test subject an enemy with 15 armor, while the attack speed of your hero prior buying the MKB is 220.
We consider different values of attack damage before buying it, and figure out the damage inflicted per second against opponents with 0%, 20%, 50%, and 100% evasion.
The old Monkey King Bar inflicted almost always more damage versus heroes with evasion
If your hero has a high attack speed the old MKB was stronger: you could make a better use of the extra damage.
If your hero has already a lot of damage the new MKB is better: the extra attack speed is more useful than the raw damage provided by the old item.
Against targets with lots of armor the new MKB is slightly more effective: the +66 damage of the old one has less value versus armored heroes. Still, this isn’t a huge factor.
The difference between the proc damage caused by the two versions of the item is trivial. Most of the heroes in the game have a 25% magic resistance - the old MKB dealt 120 magic damage with a 35% proc chance, while the new one deals 60 pure damage with a 75% proc chance.
Against Buildings the old MKB was more efficient
The proc damage and True Strike effects don’t work against buildings.
In the graph below, we looked at multiple values of damage and attack speed before buying the Monkey King Bar.
The new item is better for any combined value of these two data above the red line, for any other value below the curve the old MKB was stronger. Generally, the old one was better in most scenarios.
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 @SkulzDota.