Hello and welcome!
Treant Protector is a STR hero that can solo offlane or support in a trilane. Living up to his name, his signature ability is Living Armor which allows him to heal up allies and towers as well as adding a large damage block to them for a limited number of attacks. When the midgame comes around, he functions as a great initiator. Jumping out of the trees from invis or simply by blinking in, a proper Overgrowth can and will swing a fight in your favour. Disabling 5 enemies for 4.5 seconds is absolutely huge! Treant Protector's massive base damage along with his natural tankiness allows him to offlane easily, regenerating any health he uses with Living Armor. He also makes getting first blood quite easy in a trilane as the slow from Leech Seed is crippling in the laning phase.
Treant's contribution to a game may sometimes seem minimal. He doesn't get lots of kills or assists. He doesn't make "big plays" and he isn't flashy. But he's the reason that that Weaver can dive under towers so early and kill squishy supports. He's the reason every outer tower is alive and at full health. He's the reason that the teamfight was won. If you don't mind having what some see as a poor KDA but like winning, this hero is for you.
The focus of this guide is on supporting with Treant, but I will also touch on offlane.
Please remember that every game is different and that no skill/item build works for every game. This, like all guides, is just a rough outline. Be fluid when you play and adapt your play to suite the game!
Good luck and may you Overgrowth well.
When to pick
- When you wanna play Tree (most important factor, IMO)
- When your team needs teamfight
- When your team needs a tank
- When your team has dive-happy heroes like Weaver and Night Stalker
- When the enemy has very little pushing power
When not to pick
- When you don't want to play Tree
- When your team already has a lot of teamfight and needs DPS
- When the enemy is push-heavy
- When your team needs a solo mid or hard carry
- When your team needs stuns
- Great teamfight
- Natural tank
- Living Growth keeps allies alive and heals up towers
- Punches as hard as a... As a tree, really.
- Natural escape for you and your team, great to set up ganks or initiate before blink
- Versatile item builds, can make use of pretty much everything
- Very low BAT (base attack time)
- Unreliable escape due to fade time
- Low single target DPS
- Ulti can be hard to utilize correctly
Some consider this skill pretty bad, others think it's great. I'm on the fence about it. On the one hand it can provide permanent invisibility. On the other, it has a 2 second phase time and forces you to stay close to the trees. What one thinks of this entirely depends on how it is used. Before farming Blink Dagger this can be used as an initiation tool which is why we pick up a single point in it before level 6. Late game this is best used to scout the jungle and plant wards undetected. Remember that it can also be cast on allies, so make use of this skill! This is skilled first in the offlane to add some survivability and escape and is maxed second because it's just so useful. The low CD and mana cost means you can be permanently invisible. This allows you to collect so much information as well as sap XP in lanes safely in the midgame.
A 28% slow for 4.5 seconds at level one? That's first blood, son. With 90/180/270/360 damage in total this also functions as a decent nuke. Not only that but it also heals all allies in the area for 90/180/270/360. But wait, there's more! The pulses will continue even if the enemy dies or if the enemy goes invisible. Pro tip: use the green pulses to track where the enemy has gone when invis. Use this to initiate in lane and also during a teamfight to keep your allies healthy. This is maxed last because of it's now 80 mana at level 1, the slow doesn't scale, and you'll find that you'll get far more mileage out of a maxed Nature's Guise than a maxed Leech Seed.
The heal part of this is actually the best. It helps your creeps push on their own. Simply use it on an enemy creep and walk away. Your creeps will heal for 360 HP each and the lane will push. Easy.
What. A. Skill. Seriously this skill is fantastic. This global range (yes, global) skill saves lives. It prevents your carry from dying from a gank. It prevents your team from getting 5 man wiped. It adds a huge damage block to your buddies so they can dive towers and go into what may seem like a bad fight and turn it around. The reason why this is maxed first is because at level 4 it can block up to 560 damage in total. Wow.
The key use of this skill, however, is on towers. During the many minutes of downtime, there is no reason to have this skill unused. Healing up to 195 HP at a near constant rate can bring your towers back to full health in no time at all. How do you like me now, Nature's Prophet? Ratting bastard.
Your ultimate is one of the better ones. Using this skill is as easy as pie with Nature's Guise or Blink Dagger. A whopping 3/3.75/4.5 disable on up to 5 heroes can win even the hardest of fights. The combos with this are endless. Chain Frost, Mystic Flare, Epicenter... There are so many skills and hero compositions that are helped so much by this! A low low cooldown of only 70 seconds means that once you've hit 6 there is no reason for your team to avoid fights. In a similar manner to Black Hole or Ravage, don't be afraid to use this on just 1 or 2 enemies early on. Securing early kills is well worth it.
A spell you gain after the purchase of Aghanim's Scepter. This spell is INSANE. It turns any tree into a ward. A ward that makes your ultimate deal 525/700/875 damage to anyone around it. Yup. Insane. Great for farming, splitpushing, ganking and teamfighting. Use this spell as much as possible, placing the "wards" at key points in the map where they can provide vision and also aid in fights.
This should be purchased at the start of every game by someone, and since you're a support it's gonna be you. If someone has already purchased this then buy some Sentry Wards or a Smoke of Deceit.
Your team should always have a set of these to start. Their use is so varied and complex that I can't describe it here. There are countless warding guides around, go check them out. GIYF. Suffice to say that wards win games. As with the courier, purchase some sentry wards or a Smoke of Deceit if someone else has bought these.
Treant Protector can be quite mana-hungry early on, depending on the amount of action going on, so just in case your offlaner is bad and needs constant Living Armor or something similar happens elsewhere you need to be able to get mana quickly.
Pretty standard regen. I find myself buying two sets of these nowadays. Your mid will want some pooling so you need extra and Healing Salve just doesn't feel as good on a support now.
NOTE: Feel free to get a salve in lieu of one set of tangoes if you'd rather.
First blood is the name of the game. Sneak around the trees to cut off the enemy's escape and use Leech Seed. The slow is awesome even at level 1. With proper follow up from your other support (stuns, silence, nuke) and a helping hand from your farmer coupled with your huge right-click should ensure first blood most of the time. If you fail then it doesn't matter, you've forced the offlaner back while he regenerates which will give your lane an advantage. Keep trying to kill when you can aswell as zoning him out while your supportive buddy stacks and pulls.
At the same time as this you need, need, NEED to be looking at your other lanes. Does anyone need assistance? Is someone getting ganked? Is your ally about to dive? Is someone low on health and out of regen? If the answer to any of these is "yes" then cast Living Armor. The difference between a good Treant Protector and a bad one is simply map awareness. You're doing your job by helping out from across the map, cheating fate and swinging fights.
It is at this time when the future of the game is decided. Play well, play smart.
Got level 6? Force a fight. Group up with 3 allies whilst the carry farms a lane and go attack a tower. You want to stay on the outskirts of the fight, possibly under he effects of Nature's Guise. Your one job in the early fights is to get a decent Overgrowth off. Anything else is secondary. Continue to do this whenever your ulti is off of cooldown. Push towers and take fights to buy your carry time to farm up for late game.
As the mid game goes on ganks will happen, people will die and towers will be lost. Your role in all this is to prevent all three. Prevent ganks with proper warding. Save people's lives with map awareness and Living Armor. Keep your towers up by using Living Armor in downtime. Every time an enemy push fails (which it should thanks to Overgrowth) you have to get the towers back up to full health.
You may feel a tad useless now. Your punches don't do as much, Living Armor goes away faster and blocks less and your Leech Seed barely makes a dent on the enemy. It's ok, we knew this would happen. Mid game is your time to shine, your carry will now start pulling his weight thanks to all the time you bought early on.
Your one skill that gets better as time goes on is Nature's Guise. At max level, it's duration is longer than the CD allowing maximum invis. This is best used to enter the enemy jungle and scout for heroes. Ganks are far more devastating in the late game since the respawn timer gets longer. The information you provide can win the game. Placing wards won't break your invis so go plant them in aggressive spots.
Keep initiating. Keep blinking. Keep using Overgrowth. Fights will get bigger and harder, they will have severe consequences so do whatever you can to make sure you win them. As previously stated ganks are far more devastating now so be sure to teleport in support of lone heroes and use Living Armor.
Treant Protector was once seen almost exclusively as an offlaner. However, the meta game changes more often than I change my underpants. Once upon a time the offlane was about utility. Heroes like Windranger and Dark Seer were in their prime as the best utilities in the game. Solo-mid used to provide all the semi-carry and midgame DPS a team needed, with the offlaner and supports providing the lockdown and nukes to net the mid hero some kills, all while protecting the hard carry. These days an offlaner has to provide DPS as well as good farming capabilities due to the onset of a push-heavy meta. When 5 man deathball meets 5 man deathball, the group with the most damage wins which is why offlane now has to provide the DPS of a semi-carry. Unfortunately for you, Treant is utility which means his use in the offlane has dropped off - and rightfully so.
However this doesn't mean you can no longer go offlane. Due to the possession of an escape, natural tankiness and the ability to snag last hits with your trunk fists you function rather well. Think of yourself as a lesser form of Tidehunter and you wouldn't be too wrong.
Don't die. That's priority #1. Feeding the enemy carry some kills is the wrong way to start off a game. A bad offlaner can easily lose an entire game, that's what makes this position the hardest and also the most fun if you enjoy that kind of pressure. Play cautiously, only going for last hits when it's safe to. You need levels, not gold, so if you're being zoned hard just sap some EXP.
Priority #2 is looking after your allies in the other lanes with Living Armor. When **** hits the fan and people are getting ganked you can save them. When things are going well and your buddies are diving tier two towers you can keep them safe. Remember though, you have to stay alive. If looking across the map is too distracting and you end up stood still in lane then only do so when you're next to your tower.
Due to the fact you're solo, you will level up fairly quickly. If you get an early level advantage try and gank mid lane. Use Nature's Guise to sneak around and get into a position to use Leech Seed or Overgrowth. The best time to go in is when the creep wave is at YOUR t1 mid. The enemy mid hero will be forced to sit in the river with no vision of the high ground. Doing this greatly helps your mid hero as winning mid lane allows for some serious snowball.
This is your time to shine. With a half decent team at your back (in pub games that is not guaranteed) you should win every teamfight and repel every push. Remember to heal towers as much as possible! Now is the time when you need to hold your Overgrowth back for the bigger fights in the hope of catching 4 or 5 enemies. Use Nature's Guise to scout around and look for kills with your team - pick offs mean chances to take towers.
Late game isn't as tough for offlane Treant as it is for support. Because of the increased farm and levels in the early and mid game, it's quite possible to transition into a fairly hard hitting hero with items like an Assault Cuirass and a Mjollnir. Just keep in mind that getting a good Overgrowth off to aid the true carry is far more important that getting a few hits in.
- Heroes with high single target DPS like Lina and Skywrath Mage
- Heroes with great AOE like Earth Spirit or Leshrac
- Heroes that can combo with you including Dark Seer and Earth Shaker
- Heroes with high impact spells that can easily be whiffed like Lich or Witch Doctor
- Hard carries that benefit from the mass lock down such as Anti-Mage and Phantom Lancer
- Very aggressive heroes like Weaver and Axe
- Enemies with a lot of DoTS like Venomancer and Warlock
- Illusion based heroes such as Spectre or Chaos Knight
- Timbersaw and not just for thematic reasons.
- Heroes with high magic damage output like Zeus and Lion
In conclusion, Treant Protector is an easy hero to play but a very hard hero to play well. Map awareness is crucial for proper play, protect your allies as much as possible and keep your towers healthy. Make sure to play very agressively in the laning phase even if the chance of getting a kill is low. Armour is low on everyone in the early stages so a few punches will easily zone out the enemy. Midgame is when you're at you're best so make use of the time you have before you fall off by forcing fights whenever Overgrowth is off cooldown. Make you to scout and roam constantly under the protection of Nature's Guise. Vision is a huge part of the game. Most of all, remember that on the surface it may seem like you aren't doing much but when it's all over your team will be grateful for all the work you did in the background. Let the carry get the limelight, but it was your victory.
DON'T JUST RUSH AGHS
Thank you for reading and have fun out there!
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