Well, this is my first guide on DOTAFire and it is on one of my favourite heroes, Morphling.
Morphling is a hard carry who transitions well into lategame due to Morph and his ability to farm safely and anywhere on the map because of 3 of his skills : Waveform, Morph(Strength) and Replicate.
-Is one of the hardest carries lategame
-Can dominate early game and midgame due to Waveform (325 damage is no joke)and Ethereal Blade respectively
-One of the best agility gain in game(3 agi per level)
-Can get shutdown early
-Is often countered by Antimage
-Needs a lot of farm to be truly effective
-DO NOT PICK MORPHLING IF YOUR TEAM HAS MORE THAN 1 HARD CARRY ALREADY!
-If you're still reading after the last chapter, it means your team either has 0-1 hard carry before you picked or you're a dumb ***. Either way, you go into game and start purchasing items appropriate for your lane.
The absolute best lane for Morphling. You could morph some stats to Agi and dominate lane hard against most solo mids other than possibly TA, Viper and Pudge. Those guys wreak havoc on your ultra low health. If you got pool-ed a salve and maybe tangos, go for the wraith band. It helps you a lot with damage and extra stats. Don't go naked wraith though. That's silly. After you farm up for ~2 mins, pick up your bottle. If you weren't pooled regen, get some extra stats like some branches, maybe a circlet and tangos. Just farm for the bottle, you are almost certainly going to get every rune with Waveform pushing the lane out. Try to get your supports to ward the runes to minimise time-wasting. Keep farming, maybe use Waveform to harass as well as push out the lane if it's safe and just continue doing this until
a) There's an opening for a kill (Bad positioning, teammate ganking)
b) You see more 1 - 2 people off the map
c) You just got owned by some combo.
Aims of the lane:
>Dominate Hard. MAKE THAT SNIPER/INVOKER CRY WITH 1 CREEP AFTER 5 MINUTES.
>Farm up. You're a carry even though you're at mid. Carries farm.
Quite a good lane to have as well and you should do fine if you have support. Get a bit of stats and some regen + the Ring of Protection. Make it into a Ring of Aquila if you can and then go for Treads and a Bottle if you really want the regen ( Helps you flash farm through more Waveforms.) Depending on how lane goes, you will either get a lot of farm or so little farm you cry. Don't worry. Just hug your tower, stay safe, soak up exp. You'll make it back later since Morph can farm everywhere. If you get a lot of farm, try to get the tower before returning to passive farm. Try to keep creeps near enough to your tower but not so close they take hits. Keep an eye on the minimap and get support(s) to pull when appropriate.
Aims of the lane:
>Farm up. You probably aren't gonna be doing anything too great, so just farm. If it's pub, there's probably a dual-lane down here, so you might not get the chance for dominating. Keep an eye out for openings for kills and ganks from others.
No. Just no. If you gotta come here, it's more than likely it's GG unless
a) Your team has a plan with giving Morph no farm.
b) It's an aggressive trilane (Not the best place for a Morph)
Get what you normally get. A fast Basilus will help with Mana for your trilane.
You might have noticed a lack of a midgame or a lategame item section. Well, this is where Morphling basically goes two routes. If you dominated hard or got a huge advantage, go for the EB. That shotgun does massive damage to squishies and supports and it builds on your advantage and allows your team to snowball before finishing game. If you did okay, go for Linkens or BKB(if you wanna be active in teamfights ONLY). Linkens is an item that lets you farm faster through the passive regen and the extra survivability. You might want to sell your bottle if you get Linkens. And finally, if you got dominated, this is where your enemy team will probably seek to end game. Try to stall and look at the game situation before deciding on items to buy.
If you finish this around the 20-25 min mark, you should be having a good time. Go around looking for supports, use the EB on them after morphing to Agi, Waveform and then Adaptive. At earlier levels, Waveform will probably do more damage than Adaptive which is why you go Waveform first. Not much to explain, you should go on to build a Manta and then a Butterfly before GG.
This is where farm increases drastically for you. You can use Waveform even more liberally than before, but try to always keep a Replicate/ TP. After Linkens, if you can farm the EB before 25 mins, go for it, otherwise, a Manta > Butterfly > Skadi might be a good choice. Remember Skadi does stack with lifesteal.
A choice which signifies that you want to go into teamfights. After initiation, Waveform in, start hitting the supports and morph to strength when you get to ~40% of your health. After the BKB, you should always go for a damage item or Manta, depending on what your aim is.
Got Dominated, HELP ME:
Unless you can farm it up fast enough, Shotgun isn't really an option anymore. Go for the Linkens if they aren't shutting you down hard and if they are, build some cost-effective items like bracer > drums or Yasha > Manta. This is a tough spot to be in and unless the other team doesn't have a harder carry, you should get your team to turtle while you farm.
You should have either Skadi or Satanic(or both) by now.Provided the enemy team doesn't have a hard carry who is as farmed/ more farmed than you, this is when your team can aim for a win. Depending on the enemy's skillset, you might want to sell either BKB or Linkens for Linkens / BKB. You should probably be decked out in shiny stuff right now and your manta illusions deal a buttload of damage (especially with crits.) Don't rush for a fight if you don't need to and aim to take Roshan for Cheese and Aegis to end game right after. Almost always get Boots of Travels and of course, save for buyback.
If your team turtled long enough for you to get farm:
Basically, your whole team is underfarmed except you. If the enemy team do not have a harder carry, try to pick some off OR look for a teamfight if you've got teamfighters like Tide, Enigma and Dark Seer. Aim to sell off your cost-effective items for some shiny bling bling and look for Roshan and openings for a backdoor. Try to get Boots of Travels and ALWAYS HAVE BUYBACK GOLD.
Allies and Nemesises
Morphling goes well with pretty much everyone but can go exceptionally well with the following:
>If you went shotgun:
Queen of Pain synergises well when you got your shotgun. If there is ever an ultra tanky foe,
EB>Sonic Wave>Adaptive. Please proceed to say BAM! in all chat.
Every carry's dream. He has a stun, an ability which boosts your DPS rather significantly and those multicasts hurt a whole bunch.
Same with OM other than the fact that he can take you anywhere on the map. Good guy.
>The Teamfight Specialists
Despite his intense hatred for Kunkka, you two are from the sea, so that's one thing that goes well already. Furthermore, this guy can stun every bleedy guy on his screen. Gotta love him.
Pretty much a Tide, but kinda better cuz Blackhole goes through BKB. The Pulse hurts too of course.
One of the best laning supports there is. This guy has such a great defensive use that you just can't argue with him. Also, Echo Slam and Enchant Totem does work in teamfights.
-People you hate/hate you
This monk isn't peaceful. No, he wants to use those swords to slice you nicely before killing you off when you got no mana for anything. Can carry harder than you and often does since that Battlefury gives him possibly the fastest farm in the game.
Hated by everyone, loved by none. This guy is such a pain in the *** that you should just start morphing to strength the moment he comes near you.(Doom doesn't stop Morph when it's already morphing.) Please don't fight him. You can't use items or spells.
Every morphling player cried at the International when people finally realised how powerful Tiny is lategame. He peaks before Morphling and hits harder all throughout the game. With some attack speed and Aghs, he will probably outcarry you. An EB might backfire since his combo does more damage now.
Morphling has an effective time window. 20-25 mins is generally not his time. Push strats aim to end games by 20-25 mins. Do you see where I'm going here?
If they aren't on the minimap, go back to base and hide behind the fountain. They really mess up your farm and you don't want to spend time lying on the ground doing nothing.
Meh, credits to me and Morphling. You may now sing and cheer.
P.S. This is as close to a complete guide as I can make for now. Don't mention Slark in comments since nobody likes that guy. I plan to find some replays eventually. In the meantime, Sylar's Morphling is one that has received notable attention for good reason. Do check some of LGD's replays out as he is quite possibly the best Morphling player in the world right now.