I will not lie, 6.86 was generally a good patch. I say generally, of course, as there still are certain things in this game that never cease to amaze me, but we’ll get to that.
This time around, instead of complaining about Invo-erhm, how overpowered certain Heroes are and how non-existent others have become, I’ll share a few ideas I’d love to see become reality.
Gameplay and strategy-wise, I believe things are pretty decent, so my main focus will be Hero balancing.
-Arc Warden: Removed from the game completely and tossed into a dark oblivion for all eternity. But dark oblivions cost too much mana to manifest, so I can live with him becoming the crowd controller he should have been; first of all, his playstyle is too heavily focused on his ult. I’ve compared this Hero with Tinker before, because I find them similar in some ways. Tinker doesn’t Rearm EVERYTHING in the game because that would lead to some clowny matches, and the same should happen with Tempest Double.
I suggest taking away his right-click potential (which obviously comes solely from his ult) and make him more focused on nuking/disabling, through Flux and Spark Wraith.
-Drow Ranger: This one can be tricky. It’s not that she doesn’t have potential, especially with her new Aghanim’s. But, she can be countered way, way too easily. It’s not that there’s anyone who can’t simply stand beside her and reduce her damage to something negligible (no, Gust doesn’t cut it). Because of her aura, right now she’s a sort of carry that mostly boosts her team’s damage rather than carrying herself, which is a bit of an oxymoron.
I’d prefer her as regular carry, and not just as a Vengeful Spirit for ranged Heroes. No more global aura, and no more activating it for creeps; just a normal, Hero only aura, perhaps even with a smaller AoE, since it still gives a lot of damage, but completely remove the agility loss. There’s no way she can ever stand in a real game as long as this effect remains, especially in the era of Aether Lens. There’s also the possibility of removing her Frost Arrows from the unique attack modifiers list, so she can slow+lifesteal at the same time.
Unique attack modifiers, or orb effects if you will, are so 2008 anyway.
-Earth Spirit: Balance his freaking stun sometime soon? I mean, it’s been I don’t know how many patches already. A smaller AoE or slower travel speed or even a unit hit limit would do just fine.
-Ember Spirit: This guy is going to be around forever, I kid you not. If the concept of having this Hero is acceptable, a Hero with 4 nukes, an AoE disable, initiation, 2 invulnerability skills, another survival skill, no casting times whatsoever (him and Invoker only, I believe), instant global teleport, solo AND carry potential, then I don’t know what to make of it. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying he’s always been overpowered, but someone with so many capabilities will fill in most matchups and can very easily get out of hand. Now, people have realized how strong he can be with Boots of Travel, and he’s become quite the powerhouse, again.
Personally, I’d put some casting time on both his ult skills, so he can’t just instantly evade ganks like they’re nothing, and will have to be careful of his positioning a bit more.
-Invoker: Heh, I can rant forever, but I won’t. The guy that can do everything perfectly, Invoker, needs to be a proper wizard, with nukes/disables/buffs only, not a right-clicking beast that roams like Clinkz and soloes Roshan like Ursa. If that sounds too COMPLICATED, we can settle for some lower overall stats (it’s fine if he runs out of mana once in a while, y’know). He deserves a 0 armour among other things.
-Lion: He used to be play as a solo, and I could really see it happening again. After all, he works better with some levels and a bit of farm. So, I’d like his solo potential boosted, through more base damage and a bit more damage on Earth Spike. Some extra movement speed wouldn’t hurt either.
-Lone Druid: Him having a disable too is enough. We can do without the extra 20% MS on Savage Roar (and that won’t always a bad thing for him, either). Maybe he should also get a longer cooldown on that if it’s the bear that uses it.
-Mirana: She’s received a number of small buffs lately, and yet she still fills underwhelming. That’s mainly because receiving small buffs doesn’t cut it when most others get huge ones. She’s fallen behind as a Hero a long time ago. Starfall is decent but ends up with very high manacost for an agility Hero, Arrow is unreliable and only gets damage as it levels, Leap turns pale in front of other Blink-like skills and Moonlight Shadow can be countered with 180-200 gold.
I see 2 main options: either she gets some real base damage so she can be played as a solo mid again, because she won’t work well enough in another role anymore, or an extra passive effect with her ult. This could be pretty much anything, such as more movement speed for her and also for her allies when they are under Moonlight Shadow.
-Nyx Assassin: Am I the only one thinking that removing the click-targeting from Impale was way too much? But since this is long over, I think a slightly faster casting on Impale would be enough.
-Outworld Devourer: I like his new form, but the numbers went a bit out of hand. We should probably go back to 1/2/3/4 INT steal, at the very least. If it’s not enough, even reduce Astral’s damage.
-Phantom Assassin: Poor Mortred, you never got to see the light of day. She needs… a lot, actually. She’s way too expensive; cleave, lifesteal, survivability, damage, lockdown, and all of these items cost a lot, I’ll have you know.
I’ve suggested before to try making Blur work like Void’s Backtrack used to, so she actually has some decent survivability. If not, maybe an additional effect when Coup de Grace occurs, such as some lifesteal for that attack, or even a small stun. Anything from the above list should just be implemented on the Hero herself in some form.
-Pudge: I really don’t like the 4 second cooldown Hook. There were a gazillion better ways for Butcher to become relevant. Let it be the skillshot it was supposed to be, give it more damage and even some cooldown, but not that much. Give him slightly better manacost too, so he can roam more, but don’t turn him into a freaking hooking DPSer.
-Queen of Pain: 135 cooldown for an ult that only deals damage is way too long. With 90-100, she can maybe have the early game impact she needs.
-Spectre: Give Reality a cooldown, like the good old times, so she can only jump once every Haunt. Also, maybe shorter duration on Haunt, as she deals way too much damage as of now.
-Storm Spirit: Since farming stacks was nerfed, he ought to at least get a better manacost on Static Remnant, and perhaps some more duration on his Vortex so it’s actually useful on lower levels.