Ever felt like going for something irregular, and not picking, say, Spectre for the gazillionth time? Something that will make your teammates rage against you, and pick 2 junglers to avoid supporting you and/or call GG before the game even begins?
Well, try this one, since it actually works.
Silencer is a Hero mostly played as a support. He can apply some serious pressure during the laning stage with Curse and Last Word, while Glaives can be used for harassing without drawing creep aggro.
His ult can be game changing, if used properly, so he can be a very dangerous Hero even with few levels.
He has been seen as a core a few times as well, mostly going Aghanim’s+Refresher, however with the new Curse not burning any mana, I doubt we’ll see that build again.
All that, however legit it may be, doesn’t mean he can’t fulfill another role. Glaives of Wisdom deal pure damage based on his Intelligence, the moment he permanently steals 2 Intelligence from each dying enemy Hero around him; that makes it a skill that keeps progressing throughout the whole game, even without items. Today, we’ll take a look at Silencer in the traditional DPS way.
So, how will this work?
First of all, we’ll get a few things out of the way.
1. Forget Curse. Skip it. Ignore it. Even after the remake, it’s still a pretty mediocre spell. Even when laning against Heroes it can be good against, you’ll soon realise it would’ve been better to invest elsewhere. This skill becomes dead weight very fast. The only situation where you should consider wasting skill points on it is if you’re getting your behind kicked so hard early on that there’s no other way to survive. If my point isn’t clear enough, get stats instead of Curse for as long as you can.
2. You’re playing an unconventional carry. A few things will have to change in your playstyle. If you expect to AFK farm for 30 mins and still win, you’ll be disappointed. The reasoning is to play a carry with strong lane control, the ability to get kills (or at least be around them) which will boost his damage output and, of course, the potential to win important team fights with his ult. You’ll be active and around the action more often than not.
Now that these are out of the way, let’s start from the beginning:
Skill build: In a level 1 clash, take Last Word. 150 damage is a lot for a level 1 spell and can easily result in a quick kill. After that, distribute your skill points between Glaives and Last Word. You may skip Global Silence at level 6 if you think you’re not going to use it, but remember, it can still be useful for a Silence+TP in base that can really save your life. After maxing these, get ult whenever you can.
Pressure the lane as much as possible. With some disables, you can easily get kills. Glaives will allow you to lasthit pretty well, besides harassing. Don’t hesitate to Glaive creeps, as they only cost 15 mana each. After a few levels, you shouldn’t be missing any lasthits, even under your tower.
Be very careful not to die, since you’re still a very squishy Hero. Your early game will be very important, as you need a few early items to be effective.
Item build: Start with the regular Tangoes+Salve+Stats. You’ll be focusing on early-mid game fights, so cheap items won’t go to waste; Treads+Wand+2xNulls+Drum of Endurance and you can hit pretty hard.
As for your core items, there’s really a variety of options. Here’s a few:
-Rod of Atos: Really good if you can get it fast. The stats it provides are insane, and a Global Silence+Atos will most likely result in a very dead target early on. Its low cooldown will allow you to keep fighting on and on.
-Shadow Blade: If you want to focus a bit more on pickoffs. The attack speed will boost Glaive damage a lot, and you can force your enemies in a 5v5 scenario, which is favorable for Silencer anyway. You’ll probably also need a disable item such as:
-Scythe of Vyse/Orchid Malevolence: The obvious yet effective choices. Orchid may seem a bit overkill with all those silences, but you may not always want to use your ult for a pickoff.
-Moon Shard: You’ll be amazed at how much damage this Hero can actually deal.
-Dagger+Shiva’s Guard: Use Shiva’s, blink in and Global Silence for some really good initiation.
-Force Staff: A more defensive option. Doesn’t add a lot in terms of stats, so I personally don’t like it too much unless it’s crucial for your gameplay. Best example that comes in mind is when playing against Riki, so you can get out of his Smoke.
-What about BKB? Well, since you’re silencing everyone in the enemy team, it’s better if you manage not getting it. You may consider it late in the game, when a lot of people will have ways of dispelling your ult, or if you’re getting disabled easily.
-Ghost Scepter/Eul’s: You can still be an easy kill for those BKB’ed, 1k criting regular carries. It’s best if you don’t have to get those, but if this Juggernaught is always focusing you, don’t be shy.
-Refresher Orb: Late game ownage. Dispelling one Global will be possible for most eventually, but two will be a problem.
-Eye of Skadi: I haven’t really tried this one, but since Glaives are no longer a unique attack modifier, it could work as a luxury pickup.
Despite what items you decide to get, the key point is how you play. Global Silence usage is where good Silencer players shine. Always force kills with your ult even if it’s not a total 5v5 clash. Don’t waste it for a support, obviously, but killing a carry is definitely worth it. Try to use it for winning fights and not for allowing your team to escape, since this is really a waste. Early-mid game, it’s usually better to let them die and respawn, and then win a fight back with your ult.
When your Global is on cooldown, manage between some farm and more pickoffs, if you can get them.
Silencer works well with initiators that can start a fight easily. Batrider and Beastmaster are my favourites, and the latter will also boost your damage a lot. He’s a good counter against heavily teamfight-oriented Heroes. He also works pretty well against the current favorite, Outworld Devourer.
As enemies, be careful of, well, assassins. Templar/Phantom assassin can jump on you and blow you up. Even without BKB, they can tank your DPS. Nyx’s Mana Burn hurts a LOT, you’ll probably need BKB against him.
Try it out and you’ll soon see how underrated this Hero is.