Welcome to my Pugna strategy guide, this guide will be divided into 2 different builds that I have found to be most effective during my times as playing Pugna. I decided to make this guide because Ive noticed that a large quantity of dota players cant seem to play him correctly, they usually feed continuously and barely provide any team fight synergy for the team. Pugna is an extremely easy hero to play if you learn his required playstyle as well as a more in depth understanding of his abilities. Most Pugna players think pugna is a nuker like Lion/Lina, so they often play in a similar cannon nuking fashion. Sure, this style of play can work but there have been other strategies that prove to be more successful.
An exploding pulse deals damage to enemies and structures in the area. Deals 33% damage to structures.
Damage: 100/175/250/325 to units and 40/60/80/100 to structures
Blast Delay: 0.9
Cooldown: 5.5 Seconds
-This skill is used for farming, pushing lanes, destroying towers, and dishing out aoe damage in a team fight
-The low cooldown is perfect for teamfights as it allows Pugna to consistently cast it over and over
-If you can catch all five enemy heroes in the aoe it deals 1625 magic damage, this spell is serious business
-Spell animation can be cancelled by pressing S, which stops the ability completely and saves you some mana
-Spell damage does "NOT" go through glyph of fortification on Dota 2
-Spell is most cost efficient when you can catch enemy creeps, enemy heroes, and towers within its aoe
A powerful banishing spell that slows a unit and renders it unable to attack or be attacked. Afflicted units take extra magic damage.
Spell Damage Increase: 40%
Movement Speed Slow: 50%
Cooldown: 13/11/9/7 Seconds
-This spell is mainly used to amplify magic done to a single target. The 40% extra damage is no joke early game, as it allows for nuke combinations to completely wipe out an enemy hero without the use of physical attacks
-Besides the magic damage amplification, this spell can also be used to stop physical damage. You can decrepify an ally hero to stop physical damage done to him, or you can cast it on an enemy carry to stop them from damaging anyone
-This spell stops any type of damage besides magic and pure damage
-Decrepifying + Life Draining amplifies both the damage and the heal return
-You can decrepifiy your nether ward to keep it alive
-Decrepify yourself before you teleport often times it can save your life from a physical damage enemy hero
Pugna places a nether ward that fires mana flares at enemy heroes who dare to cast spells, while also preventing them from regenerating mana. Nether Ward deals damage equal to the damage multiplier times the mana spent by the enemy hero. Lasts 25 seconds.
Ward Health: 75/150/225/300
Damage Per Mana Used: 0.75/1/1.25/1.5
Mana Regeneration: -1.5/-3.0/-4.5/-6
Cooldown: 35 Seconds
-This ward nukes enemy heroes who dare to cast an ability within its 1600 aoe.
-Used to frighten enemy heroes from casting their abilities
-Used defensively to stop pushes
-Used to gain area control
-Mana flare damage is inflicted before the ability actually occurs, therefore a enemy hero could be slain before the ability actually occurs resulting in zero damage.
-Can be used to block pathing as shown in this video -Can be used to ward-bait enemy heroes, which is the process of baiting out enemy heroes to try and destroy the ward.
-Always place a nether ward before a team clash occurs, initiation spells are very costly in mana, sometimes the enemy heroes will die before the ability actually activates
CHANNELED - While channelling Life Drain, Pugna siphons HP of the target enemy unit. Lasts 10 seconds.
SCEPTER UPGRADABLE: Increases drain per second and sets cooldown time to zero.
Health Drained Per Second: 120/160/200 (180/240/300*)
Cooldown: 22 Seconds (0)
-Used for efficient lane staying capabilities
-Used to stay alive for team fights
-Can also be used just for dealing damage
-Is a channeling spell, and will continue to lifedrain an enemy unit as long as its in a 850 radius of Pugna
-Even if a life drained hero blinks but still remains in the 850 radius, the hero will still be life drained
-Decrepify also amplifies the heal return on Pugna
-Decrepifying yourself does not amplify the heal
-Life draining an illusion will automatically kill it on the first tick, which is perfect for countering manta styles and illusions.
There are a few scenarios in which Pugna would be an excellent pick.
Even though Pugna can counter a large quantity of the heroes, he himself can be easily countered by a selection of heroes.
Heroes such as these have abilities that completely counter Pugna in various ways
-Antimage's mana break and mana void will completely crush Pugna due to his low strength gain and high intelligence gain. Pugna will almost always have more mana than his hp, therefore resulting in a more deadly mana void ultimate.
-Clink's core item, Orchid Malevolance, completely shutsdown pugna and amplifies incoming damage.
-Bloodseeker has a 9 second silence, which basically counters any ability dependant hero.
-Riki's cloud has a long silence.
-Doom Bringer's Ultimate does more than enough damage to pugna and also silences for a long duration.
-Drows silence and high dps will rip Pugna to shreds.
-Balanar at night, can completely shutdown Pugna with the extended silence and slow.
-Tiny has two mana intensive abilities, but his strength gain ratio is too high compared to the mana cost, so not enough damage is done through the nether ward.
An ideal Pugna should be focused on ending the game before the late game phase starts kicking in because a late game carry can cause some trouble for Pugna. Though, this doesn't necessarily mean Pugna is a terrible late game hero, he can be quite effective late game with the proper carry item build, but aiming for the late game Pugna build can leave him to be sort of useless during the early to mid phases of the game, which are the phases where Pugna's abilities are most useful. I will be explaining in depth the difference between going for a early-mid game strategy and aiming for a late game carry strategy.
The support & pushing strategy is basically designed to end the game before the 30 minute mark. By doing so, Pugna is required to use his nether blast, nether ward, early-mid game core items and high base mana to continuously push the lanes and destroy the towers. I will be explaining in more detail on what Pugna should be doing during the early, mid, and late game phases.
The carry strategy is quite simple because its very similar to the pushing strategy, except Pugna will be missing essential items that will dominate the early to mid game phases. Instead Pugna will be investing his farm into items that will dominate during the late game phase. For this chapter, I will list core items that will allow Pugna to farm his luxury items.
Explanation of each core item
-Phase boots should be gotten first because it allows for extremely early survivability. Pugna has 315 movement speed, stacked with phase he will be running like he had a haste run.
-Black King Bar should be obtained after the phase boots, as it will allow Pugna to solo push a line without fear of ANYTHING!. If you are about to get ganked while pushing a lane, just pop your BKB, Decrepify yourself, and teleport to back to base. By the time you walk back to the lane, your cooldown on your BKB should be almost done, so u can retrace your steps again. You will be surprised how much farm you can get from relentlessly pushing a lane. You should have absolutely no problem obtaining your luxury items the rest of the game.
-While solo pushing a lane, you should buy a void stone from the secret shop as the % mana regeneration will stack immensely with your 4.0 intelligence gain. Also the void stone is used in a lot of the recipes for your luxury items.
-The teleportation scrolls are essential in your solo lane pushing
There is only one general Luxury item that Pugna should get every game, which is Aghanims. Besides aghanims, everything else is situational to the status of the game. With Aghanims the cooldown on lifedrain will be reduced to ZERO!, this will allow Pugna to dish out as much damage as a regular carry would, it is a pretty powerful item on Pugna and I believe it should be gotten every game if Pugna's role is to carry. If amplified with decrepify, life drain can deal around 400 dps. An example of a Pugna dominating with Aghanims is show below.
The one thing that I think most Pugnas have a hard time dealing with, is positioning. Most Pugnas think they should be playing a nuke cannon style like Lion/Lina, this style of play doesnt work on Pugna because of his extremely low strength gain. Often times if a Pugna is found trying to initiate a fight by using decrepify on an enemy hero, Pugna will usually be focused down within seconds from the enemy team. I dont get where these Pugna's get the idea that they should be setting up fights, especially with the buffed range on decrepify. You can now cast it from a 700 range, which means u should be no where remotely in front of your team at all times, or else you will just pop like a fly if focused on. Besides, Pugna's abilities were designed to dominate in team fights, his nether ward, nether blast, and decrepify were designed to dish out large sums of damage to the whole team alongside the help of your allies. Life drain is also a team fight ability because it allows Pugna to stay in the fight longer so he can keep recasting his nether blast. Remember, Pugna has a 4 intelligence stat gain and a 1.2 strength gain for a reason, which is to discourage out-front positioning.
AL vs m5
(I found this game to be a perfect example of a power pushing Pugna strategy done by AL)
If you guys have any questions, dont be afraid to leave them in the comment box as I will reply to them when I have some free time.
This guide is over, now do me a favor and stop feeding with Pugna now will ya? ^^