It’s been a long road. Not every aspect on the game has always been so well-balanced as today (questionable), not to mention the various bugs popping up from every hole.
Today, we’re going to look at some spicy, old-school material.
* Cannot use Aphotic Shield on Doomed hero anymore (6.39). Yes, this meant you could actually remove Doom with Aphotic Shield. Imagine the frustration on those Doom pickers back then.
* Purchasing bottle now automatically gets filled up (meaning chicken can buy it for you and have it filled the first time) (6.41). Before that, you’d have to use the Bottle on your fountain to fill it up.
* Changed the way Aegis and Roshan work. Aegis is now a Roshan drop (a1-charge ankh basically). You cannot create it manually. Roshan starts out weaker without melee return. He respawns stronger and bigger every 10 minutes (6.42). Aegis used to be a craftable item, made with Platemail, Cloak and a recipe, providing the benefits of these items and a 3-charge reincarnation. You’d respawn in your base instead of where you died, and the item was undroppable and unsellable. Which meant that even you could make as many Aegises as you wanted, each of them would take up a spot in your inventory forever.
Roshan was also way, way stronger before this. He was really treated as a “stage boss” of sorts. Generally, you needed your whole team to bring him down, and only very late in the game. He dropped Cheese every time.
* Tinker no longer Rearms Arcane Ring (6.43). Obviously, Arcane ring was the thing that was turned into Arcane Boots. It did pretty much the same, providing armour instead of movement speed. While Tinker wasn’t played too much the way he’s played today, I believe he was somewhat of an undiscovered potential god (thank god he remained undiscovered).
* Troll Warlord -> Removed Berserker Rage mana cost (6.44). Wanna switch from ranged to melee? 50 mana please.
* Fixed Boots of Travel working on Psionic Traps (6.44b). Well, that must’ve been fun.
* Fixed Vacuum from working on various exploitable areas (6.44b). Funny thing? Nobody ever bothered implementing this in Dota 2, the moment you gain free pathing when getting Hooked/Swapped in said areas.
As a side note, Butcher and Vengeful couldn’t use Blink Dagger at all back then, to prevent similar abuses.
* Changed Crystal Maiden’s Brilliance Aura to a global effect (6.49). Being a normal aura was pretty underwhelming. After that though, she quickly became first pick material for some time.
* Removed the invulnerability period while Priestess of the Moon is leaping (6.49). She was a pretty darn scary Hero back then.
* Changed Drow Ranger’s Marksmanship ultimate (6.50). Before that, it would provide a chance to kill a creep in one shot. This was by far considered to be the worst ulti in the game.
* Redesigned Eul’s Scepter of Divinity (6.50)
* Redesigned Guinsoo’s Scythe of Vyse (6.50)
Eul and Guinsoo were previous DotA developers. Scythe of Vyse required Scepter of Divinity as part of its recipe, obviously referring to the game changing hands. Scepter had 6 charges of Cyclone only, and each cast lasted a lot longer. It couldn’t be cast on self. Practically, it was a disable weaker than Hex. That was the point when the items became independent.
Scythe of Vyse not bearing Guinsoo’s name in Dota 2 should obviously be related to him becoming a member of the League of Legends development team.
* Changed how Dagger of Escape works. It cannot be activated if you took damage in the last 3 seconds. (6.50). I can still recall the reactions among the community. Apparently, Dagger of Escape was Blink Dagger, and you could use it even upon taking Hero damage. It had shorter range and longer cooldown, plus the small manacost that was removed during Dota 2, but still was the most game-affecting item by far. Attempting to play without it against 3-4 blinkers would lead to disaster. There weren’t many other mobility items back then either; no extra movespeed on Eul’s, no Force Staff, no Drums. Long story short, the game revolved around getting Dagger of Escape way too much.
After 6.50, it wasn’t used very much. Since it retained its old range/cooldown plus the disabling from ANY source of damage, even from creeps, besides seeing it on must-get Heroes like Earthshaker, it was forgotten for some time.