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CK CK, Playing Chaos Knight

June 24, 2018 by Croofe
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General Build

DotA2 Hero: Chaos Knight


Purchase Order

Core Progression

Starting Items

Early Game

Core

Extension

Situational

Late Game

Very Situational



Hero Skills

Chaos Bolt

1 4 9 11

Reality Rift

2 3 5 7

Chaos Strike

6 13 14 16

Phantasm

8 12 18

Talents

10 15

Hero Talents

-7 Reality Rift Armor Reduction
25
+2 Max Chaos Bolt Duration
+150 Gold/Min
20
Reality Rift Pierces Spell Immunity
+15 Strength
15
12% Cooldown Reduction
+20 Movement Speed
10
+5 All Stats


CK CK, Playing Chaos Knight

Croofe
June 24, 2018


Introduction

Chaos Knight is a strength hero. A pure death incarnate if he gets farm, and arguably a hero that deals highest burst physical damage excluding a hit with Divine Rapier while a critical hit procs from Daedalus or Coup de Grace.

Some patches ago, Chaos Knight can be considered an Illusion based hero because of his skills that depends on Illusion to deal maximum damage.

This hasn't changed, but in my opinion, because of his skill sets, now CK is less dependent on his ultimate. While Phantasm is still very powerful and useful, however instead of it being a "Must Use" like Sven with his God's Strength, it becomes more of a clean up tool or an Extra firepower tool, with extra being the emphasis. The "Must Use" for CK is instead Reality Rift, where his damages will be coming from, thus this build will revolves around said skill.

With this mindset change, the main weakness of Chaos Knight also changed. Instead of Area of Effect spells, Silence will be CK's most threatening status. Phantasm will be deployed after AoE spells are casted, not before. With CK's natural tankiness, AoE is a breeze to deal with, and Phantasm gives a strong dispel for CK so most bad status effect will go away when Phantasm is casted, but Silence will prevent you from casting Phantasm in the first place, and in sequence Reality Rift, which makes it the most threatening status to deal with.

Personal Words. Read before continuing.

READ THE INTRODUCTION. YOU CAN GUESS WHAT THE GUIDE WILL BE JUST FROM READING THAT.

This is not an in-depth guide, this is more of a why you should buy this item for CK or why level skill like this, etc.

Don't follow this guide very closely. Look at what your team needs and deal according to the situation. Don't worry, this guide will also give signs on when an item is good to have early or delay, or to even pick or not to pick in the first place

Abilities

Let's delve to abilities first before anything else, because it's the thing you get naturally.

First ability, Chaos Bolt

Chaos Bolt is a normal stun ability with the quirk to inverse damage with stun duration. If the stun is a short time, like only one second, then the ability will deal maximum damage, but if the stun is four seconds, then the ability will deal the minimum damage. You may think this ability can be a weak one, but when you look at other abilities of CK, it doesn't matter. Long stun, minimum damage, means more damage to Reality Rifted opponents, but low stun, maximum damage, means less damage from Reality Rift, but more from Chaos Bolt. Either way, you have win-win solution.

At level one, it can deal a whopping maximum damage of 200 magical damage. It's great for first bloods and harassing.

At later stage of the game, the damage of Chaos Bolt is less useful and having longer stun duration is actually far better, considering the growth of Chaos Knight you want to maximize this second.

Quoting on gamepedia, "the actual stun duration is not by exact seconds, it ranges between the given values (e.g. at level 1, it could stun for 1.74 seconds)." It means, don't trust on whatever the visual shows, but instead trust the stun bar.

The biggest weakness of this skill is the mana cost, especially in early game. A freaking 140 mana cost for a strength hero. To deal with this, we will build a Soul Ring early game.

The second biggest weakness is the range. The range is poor enough that you will need gap closer for it to be effective.

Personal Note:

The skill, in my opinion, has a bad scaling, especially for this skill's second point and third point.

Considering what the ability gives to you, you can ignore giving this a second point at level 4, and instead goes for early Chaos Strike. I generally do this if I face quite a bit of harassment in laning stage and want to pick early Phantasm.

This ability should not be used to pop Linken's Sphere, but if you don't have any items to pop the item, use this instead of Reality Rift. RR is used for killing, hence should be a priority number one to make sure the skill lands.




Second, the main ability of this guide, Reality Rift.

Reality Rift is both a gap closer skill and physical damage amplifier (a.k.a. Armor reduction). A very scary combination by itself. This is pretty much what the skill does. Simple and effective.

Reality Rift teleports all of your Illusions you have with you and automatically forces you and your illusions to attack the target, so no need to right click them manually.

One thing to note is that Reality Rift has farther range than Chaos Bolt, so RR can be used first to get close then use the stun (then beat them to death).

Reality Rift reduces enemy armor thus increasing physical damages from all sources, including you, allies, and your illusions. When Phantasm is active, don't be surprised when you delete the enemies by just simply using Reality Rift.

Further exact details of this ability does not matter much when things get hot.


Personal Note:

Despite the ability to gap close, the range is rather limited. 700 range at level 4 and enemy has to be in sight. It also has long cast time, making the ability rather not effective when enemy is juking on the trees or on fog of war, and also easily dodgeable by Blink Dagger.

These limitations can be very detrimental for you. I recommend very heavily to invest in Blink Dagger to remove them when enemies get away by the reasons stated above.

There is a limit of 2.000 range for your illusions to be teleported alongside you. This is far further then Blink Dagger range, so there is a huge synergy there, since if you use Blink then RR the enemy, all of your illusions also go with you.

DO NOT use Reality Rift to break Linken's Sphere. RR is your primary source of damage and should be made sure to land on enemies.



Third ability, Chaos Strike.

Chaos Strike, like any other critical attack passives, sucks at early game. There is not much damage to multiply and no attack speed to compensate the low proc chance. So this should be maxed last when CK has stats and items to make use of this passive.

Chaos Strike however, has that useful value point: The lifesteal. The lifesteal is not enough for you to jungle early game or tanking the creepwave at the start of the game, but it gives you sustenance to continuously farming in early mid game, especially after ganks or fights. Chaos Strike will make your health always above danger level and thus reduce the need to return to fountain for healing.

Chaos Strike is a unique passive that the whole package works for illusions. Yes, the illusions lifesteals if the illusion procs the passive. Chaos Strike makes your illusions tankier than it normally would in early game and make your illusions the walking death at late game.



Finally, the ultimate, Phantasm.

Phantasm is basically an ability to summon illusions that is stronger than the usual run on the mill illusions. That's it. All other flashy nifty works is done by other abilities.

The one thing you need to note is that when casting Phantasm, CK give strong dispel to himself and CK have 0.5 seconds of invisibility. You can dodge spells with this, but more than likely you'll need the skill to do so.

Personal Note:

For me, Phantasm by itself is a mere extra firepower. Only used when needed. Meaning only used when the battle starts to shift to enemy's favor.

I only cast phantasm when AoE spells are already used up by enemies.

With Blink Dagger, Phantasm can be used to initiate battles. Cast the ability, blink to unsuspecting opponents, and Reality Rift the target. Instant kill if your opponent has slow reaction.

Level Phantasm either at level 6 or level 8. Level 8 is more ideal since you have maxed Reality Rift and thus maximum damage for you and your illusions. However, picking this at level 6 may be needed, especially if your laning stage is not what you hope for. Also pick Phantasm at level 6 if you have to be babysitted by a support, chances are, with the slow exp gain because half of it is leeched by the support, you will fight soon. The enemy mid will probably make a play soon, and you will need that extra firepower early on. That first win fight will be a strong boost for CK.

Talents

Chaos Knight is stat based hero. All other needs are mostly covered by his abilities, like Gap close, stun, and damage are covered naturally. Other than to cover weaknesses or to be more effective, all the items are stat based.

Level 10: +5 Stats instead of +20 Movement Speed.

I personally prefer +5 stats, because it makes CK tanky and hit harder and faster attack, also more mana, more spells. If we breakdown that stat talents, in total it gives 15 stats for CK (+5 Strength, +5 Int, +5 Agi).

Movement Speed is not that huge because Chaos Knight has a gap closer and stun skills. CK is also one of the heroes with highest base movement speed as well. Also items that used in this guide is to cover such weaknesses.

Level 15: +15 Strength instead of 12% Cooldown Reduction.

Don't underestimate that +15 Strength. It makes CK and his illusions very, very tanky, and hit harder.

If you follow this guide closely, by level 15 you will have HP that is almost 3k. Very insane amount considering only very few heroes can get this amount of health without Heart of Tarrasque. And you will get more health the up level you go.

Level 20: Choose which one you need.

If you need or forced to buy any situational items, chances are you will be better off with +150 Gold/minute. Faster gold = more items, more items = more options, more options = more win chance.

RR Pierces immunity usefulness will dwine as Black King Bar charges are used. Unless you are the only one that can deal with the BKB carrier (meaning your allies cannot even kite that carrier until spell immunity is done), better not pick this talent.

Pick this talent when facing natural BKB carriers that need to be stopped when they activate the BKB, like for an example [{Sven]], Phantom Assassin, Troll Warlord, Shadow Fiend. or heroes with innate BKB like Lifestealer or Brewmaster. If you have Phantasm active, they do not have enough power to manfight you.

Level 25: -7 Armor reduction, always.

Who needs long stun when you can delete enemies under one second from full health?

Items

Starting Items



Starts with Tango, Iron Branch, Gauntlet of Strength, Stout Shield, and an Enchanted Mango.

Tango is for healing.

Iron Branch is for that extra healing with Tango.

Gauntlet of Strength is to get that fast soul ring, bonus health, and damage.

Stout Shield is to reduce harassment and damage from creeps if you clash with enemies.

Enchanted Mango for a simple health regen and emergency mana for killing.

Early Game



Get Soul Ring first before the boot.

Soul Ring offers nice stat and regen for Chaos Knight and also mana to harass with spells.

Then get Power Treads. PT is must have because CK needs attack speed and stats. The difference in killing potential for CK is tremendous after getting PT. CK has health sustenance in the form of Chaos Strike and Soul Ring passive regen, so you can delay getting that Helm of the Iron Will for Armlet.

Core Item



Get Armlet of the Mordiggian first, it's more efficient and offers more useful stats for Chaos Knight than Echo Sabre.

You have Soul Ring to solve mana problems, naturally you want more tankiness and damage first for you and your illusions because they are your source of power in early game.

Echo Sabre is to cover your damage when Phantasm is on cooldown, and also to solve mana problem as your ultimate is very costly the more you level it. ES plays nicely with Reality Rift.

Extension



Boots of Travel is a very useful item. It boosts your farm and give potential global presence. It gives extra movement speed and low cooldown of teleport. If you have no immediate needs for other item, consider buy this first.

Blink Dagger is to boost your killing potential. When you have Blink Dagger the combo changese from Reality Rift >> Chaos Bolt to Blink >> Chaos Bolt >> Reality Rift. Blink also should be bought if you want to target certain enemies that like to appears a bit later in fights.

Heart of Tarrasque is a pretty much a death coffin for your enemies and a game ender if you can get it early. By this point, you would realize you have a hard time to keep your health at maximum if not healing on the fountain because of your sheer health pool. Even your passive will not heal you to the fullest. By the time you hit level 25 and has HoT, your health will almost hit 6k. Since CK is also a strength hero, the strength bonus from this item also counts to damage.

Situational



Black King Bar is used to make sure you are able to cast Phantasm. You want this item more for the dispel against silences and immunity to get debuffed by enemies.

Linken's Sphere to block skills that will bother you the most, like Doom's Doom.

Monkey King Bar to face evasion heroes like Windranger, Phantom Assassin, Brewmaster or Radiance carrier like Spectre.

Hurricane Pike is a Linken's Sphere popper. I prefer this more than Heaven's Halberd because of the extra mobility it provides. Also you can get Force Staff first as a cheaper item to pop Linken.

Silver Edge if the enemy is rather passive and plays turtling, having Silver Edge can be a boon to pick off.

Nullifier to fight against enemies that likes to give annoying buffs. Also to dispel, Ghost, Ethereal, Guardian Angel, and mute enemy items to prevent escape, best used with either Silver Edge or Blink Dagger.

Late Game



Assault Cuirass buffs everything you already owns. It gives attack speed for you and your illusions, more armor reductions, and tankiness in the form of armor.

Eye of Skadi is to replace Echo Sabre, hence it will be the very last item to get.

Very Situational



If you are deemed to be a very big threat, so big that enemies will do everything to blow you up first, then get Aeon Disk.

It works quite well. Since people will throw spells at you first, then this procs, you can let Phantasm out after. The illusion does not suffer 0 damage debuff you get from Aeon Disk, and it will give you chance to activate Black King Bar and fight back.

Tips

Early game, on laning stage, use Reality Rift and Chaos Bolt combo when there is a gap in the creep wave. The enemy will be pulled to your creep, and with reduced armor and stunned, the creeps (and you) will attack him. Do not underestimate the damage that comes from your attack and from the creep.

Winning the lane does not mean you have to kill the enemy. Preventing them from ever getting farm by making them continuously low on health is also a win.

Glossary

Capture: A term for skills that allows allies to catch up or force enemies from getting away. Skills that give guaranteed stuns or huge slows usually can be considered a capture skills.

Gap Closer: a term for getting close to target faster than normally would. Gap Closer method is usually used before or alongside Capture skills.

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