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95 Votes

Gather under my shade...

August 25, 2013 by fabioisonfire
Comments: 41    |    Views: 371496    |   

Build 1
Build 2
Build 3

Aura Support

DotA2 Hero: Treant Protector

Hero Skills

Nature's Grasp

2 12 13 14

Leech Seed

4 8 9 10

Living Armor

1 3 5 7


6 11 16


15 17 18

Planting the seeds of strength

Far to the west, in the mountains beyond the Vale of Augury, lie the remains of an ancient power, a fount of eldritch energy nestled deep in the high woods. It is said that the things that grow here, grow strangely. To the forces of nature this is a sacred place, made to stay hidden and unknown. Many are the traps and dangers of this land--all-consuming grasses and crossbred fauna and poisonous flowers--but none are so fierce as the mighty Treant Protectors. These ageless, titanic beings, charged with keeping the peace in this dangerous land, ensure that none within encroach without reason, and none without poach their secrets. For time untold they tended to their holy ground, uninterrupted, only dimly aware of the changing world beyond. Yet inevitably the wider world grew aware of this untamed land, and with each passing winter the outsiders grew bolder. Soon they arrived with tools to cut and with flames to burn, and often the Treants would ponder: who are these fragile, industrious creatures? What now had become of the wild, green world? There came and went an age of questions and of doubts, a thousand summers of long traditions set to scrutiny, while more and more the outsiders died and fed their earth. When all that bloomed had finally finished their say, curiosity had overcome caution. It was decided: a lone Protector would be sent into the wider world, and instructed to wander until the glaciers arose once more, to observe the changing land and its creatures, and to discover what unknown dangers could threaten their sacred ground.

When you play Treant Protector the right way, you will always give your team a chance to win.

Treant Protector is one of the most tanky support heroes out there. With the second highest strength in the game, coupled with the Nature's Guise ability, he becomes an extremely resilient and elusive target. You'll find that Treant Protector is able to weather just about any teamfight, remaining upright on the battlefield longer than most. The best way to take advantage of these strengths is to build Rooftrellen with a myriad of beneficial auras. This way, your entire team can take advantage of your survivability, and you'll give your squad the best chance at victory.

Although it isn't often said, Rooftrellen is the PERFECT pick to counter an enemy jungler. With Nature's Guise you can control the off-lane and make sure they don't secure any farm, not from Rooftrellen's woods.

Treant Protector also grants his ability to stay in the lane for a long period of time to his teammates with the fantastic global Living Armor spell. Rooftrellen can also cast Living Armor on friendly towers, keeping his team in the pushing game throughout the course of a match.

Also useful in ganking situations, Nature's Guise, which can be cast on allied heroes as well as himself, grants stealth and a movement speed bonus while the targeted unit is near a tree. When this ability is used on teammates like Pudge, Tiny, or Lifestealer, Rooftrellen can create easy and surprising gank opportunities for his teammates. Treant Protector also has Leech Seed, which is a nice slowing ability that also heals nearby friendlies via pulse.

Treant Protector's ultimate ability, Overgrowth, is one of the most powerful disables in Dota 2. This ability is invaluable in teamfight situations, preventing any use of Blink or invisibility, and breaking through magic immunity.

If you haven't gotten the idea by now, I'll come right out and say it: Treant Protector is an extremely valuable asset to any team composition. He's a walking ten-ton wooden behemoth, and he doesn't take kindly to fire-starters...

To use a distilled version of this guide in-game go here (for Aura Support) or here (for Gank Support) and click the green 'Subscribe' button.

Flourishment and witherings

Extremely durable
Low mana cost, global, spammable healing spell in Living Armor
High Strength gain
Invaluable teamfight initiation and disable in Overgrowth

Difficulties with mana management in the early to mid game
Slow movement speed
Slow attack speed
Tends to rely on Gold

The power of nature

Nature's Guise (Q)

"Into forest shade."

Nature's Guise is a fabulous utility Rooftrellen has at his disposal. With relatively low mana cost, this becomes a great utility for creating opportunities for your team, and snatching opportunities away from the other team. This is what also makes Treant Protector the perfect pick to counter a jungler.

This is a great spell for making an escape, or saving a teammate. Remember, however, that this spell has a fade time of 2. With this in mind, you'll need to cast Nature's Guise on your target slightly before the point of no return--otherwise, you'll waste the mana and cooldown on the spell.

Quelling Blade is an extremely useful item to have in your inventory if you plan on using this skill frequently, both for ganks and escapes. You can use the short cooldown to cut down trees to create paths for Pudge to get closer for Meat Hook attempts, or cut your way through the jungle to avoid pesky AOE spells as you escape. Remember to always be carrying a Town Portal on you as well, so you can hide away in the forest and then make a swift exit back to the safety of the Fountain. (Note: Although it is very difficult for me to condone cannibalism, using a Tango can function as a makeshift Quelling Blade in a jam.)

Utilization of this skill with your teammates effectively requires good communication. As any good Treant Protector knows, you want to be in direct communication with your teammates before you cast Nature's Guise on them. Otherwise, you might end up casting the spell on a teammate in an attempt to save them from a gank, and they will unknowingly move away from the tree line, losing their invisibility, and their life.

With solid communication, you'll find that setting up ganks with this skill becomes much more efficient. Even if you don't have a headset, typing something as simple as "here invis" and pinging next to the trees can be enough to clue your teammates in on your intentions.

Nature's Guise also comes in handy when you're pushing. With Rooftrellen's right-click power and Leech Seed you can push the lane hard all on your own. When the enemy team comes to stop you, disappear into the trees! Rinse and repeat.

Note: Auto-attacking will cause Rooftrellen to lose the invisibility granted from Nature's Guise, but casting other spells or using items (such as Tango or Quelling Blade) will not.

Leech Seed (W)

"Rot from within."

Leech Seed is a nifty little ability in Rooftrellen's leafy arsenal. With the effect of both slowing an enemy unit and draining their health, as well as healing nearby allies, it makes for the perfect ability to assist in ganking situations.

You'll want to cast Leech Seed to initiate a gank--the slow, clocking in at 24%, is almost always enough to allow a teammate to get close and personal, as well as cast their own stunning ability.

In the lane, with a Soul Ring, this is a very effective harassment spell, and can prove to be quite annoying for an opposing hero, and quite beneficial to your laning buddy.

Using this spell in combination with Nature's Guise, Treant Protector's ganking potential is high when used effectively.

Living Armor (E)

"Come into my shade."

Living Armor is one of Rooftrellen's bread and butter skills. At the low-low mana cost of 25 and a short cooldown duration, you should be casting this spell on cooldown. I can not stress that enough. This spell kicks ***! So use it every chance you get!

Good map awareness is a must for this skill to be effective. Constantly be popping around the minimap, checking each tower's health, and each teammate's health. Prioritize what needs healing first and foremost, and focus your energy on that. Even if a tower or hero only needs a few hitpoints healed, go for it. The mana cost is so low and every bit helps. Don't put it on your teammates to alert you when they or a tower need healing--it's your responsibility.

Keep in mind, however, that Living Armor will dispel once more than 7 instances of damage are taken on the targeted unit. This spell provides a physical damage block, so casting it on a friendly hero as he escapes from an enemy can often save him. (Via the total amount of health gained while under the 15 second duration of Living Armor are 60/105/150/195)

With constant Living Armor usage, you'll find that your team is constantly winning in the tower game. Most of my victories as Treant Protector result in my team not losing a single tower. You'll also find that your teammates are able to stay on the battlefield for extremely long periods of time, especially in the delicate laning stage. Believe me--they'll appreciate it!

Treant Theorycrafting:
I've never tested this (although I intend to), but with the 6.77c Living Armor buff, it's been on my mind a lot more. I've often thought about using Living Armor to make any hero an on-the-fly jungler, if the situation calls for it. Maybe you've got somebody who could be soloing the easy lane just fine, so you can toss the other hero in the jungle and heal him occasionally to make sure they can farm for a while. Treant Protector is already an amazing assist to any jungle hero with Living Armor, but maybe some other heroes would have potential to jungle who didn't before? This is just popping off here but if anyone would like to try this out and comment on the results I'd be happy to read it.

Overgrowth (R)

"Make like a tree, and stay put."

Overgrowth is another bright spot in Rooftrellen's skillset, acting as a disable that stops enemy units caught in the tangle from moving, going invisible, Blinking, or attacking. Combined with a Blink Dagger, you can provide an amazing initiation for your squad. Overgrowth also cuts through magic immunity. However, it should be noted that if magic immunity is activated after the spell is cast, the unit will break free.

Aura Support skill build notes and justification

Most skill builds with Treant Protector should be built flexibly--adjust to the situation!

In some cases (i.e. laning with a potential level one gank hero like Juggernaut or Venomancer) it's appropriate to take Leech Seed at level 1 instead of Living Armor.

One level of Nature's Guise at level 2 usually provides enough power for the amount you'll be using the spell. You can also use it to save an early game blunder that could lead to your team giving up First Blood. However, if your team is composed of many heroes who can take advantage of the invisibility, it's okay to take it earlier and more often. It's also okay to take it earlier if the game begins extremely aggressive, because you might be needing to escape it more often.

Gank Support skill build notes and justification

This build takes direct advantage of the Soul Ring in conjunction with Rooftrellen's abilities. (Namely Leech Seed and Nature's Guise.)

Using this build, you're able to spam Leech Seed in the lane as well as use Nature's Guise to set-up ganks for your team. With this skill build you're likely going to be more mobile, using Town Portal Scrolls to jump around the map and decimate enemy heroes.

You'll rely on only one level of Living Armor taken early to heal your allied heroes and towers. Keep in mind to continue using the spell on cooldown.

Experimental Jungle skill build notes and justification

This is an idea that I have been tossing around for quite some time in my head, but DotaFire user Peachrocks brought it fully to my attention. (You can read our conversation about it in the comments section below.) As a disclaimer, this is a build that I haven't had much time to experiment with and I can't comment on its effectiveness 'in the current meta'. However, I think it's still worth the while to try out and at the very least, an interesting idea.

The rationale behind a Rooftrellen jungle is this: with an overbuffed right-click, tanky early game, and easy escape mechanism in Nature's Guise, Treant Protector can control the jungle in the easy lane and allow for your carry to solo. This is all while you are still able to support globally with Living Armor.

In this build, an early point in Leech Seed seems to make sense--but I found that it wasn't worth the mana cost. Living Armor usage (as well as the initial set of Tangos) is more than enough to sustain a solid jungle. Instead, an early point in stats improves Rooftrellen's already ridiculous right-click and survivability early game. This being said, I also had the idea of picking up an early Soul Ring to spam Leech Seed in the jungle--and I'm still not 100% sure which method is more effective.

I will be experimenting with this idea more and adding more information in the near future. I encourage everyone wanting to try out something new with Treant Protector to give it a try.

Never enough branches

Just sprouting

"Does it grow?"

Pretty basic starting loadout here. If someone already purchases the Animal Courier before you can, buy an Observer Ward instead. Remember to be buying and placing Observer Wards throughout the match. Stout Shield kicks things off for Rooftrellen with a nice physical damage block, making early harassment on him much less effective.

Branching out

"Mmm. What sort of prize is this?"

Bracer is a fantastic and cheap way to add stats early on, and it builds into Drum of Endurance as an added bonus. The Headdress and Ring of Basilius give Rooftrellen early auras and means he's well on his way to Mekansm and Vladmir's Offering, seeing as they are pieces in each of those recipes. Remember, Headdress also builds into Pipe of Insight, and this provides the item build with some flexibility.

Fully grown

"I must admit, I was impatient for this."

Auras, auras, and more auras. Each time he adds an aura to his arsenal, Treant Protector becomes just that much more of a helping force, pushing his team to victory. Vladmir's Offering provides a multitude of benefits to nearby teammates, as well as providing Rooftrellen with +2 HP regeneration. Drum of Endurance provides a relatively cheap and useful aura, as well as what can be a life-saving active ability. Arcane Boots are also a huge help not only to Rooftrellen's teammates, but his own mana pool.

What fancy twigs!

"I'm going out on a limb here."

Blink Dagger improves your initiation ability tenfold and makes Overgrowth just that much scarier. Use Nature's Guise to get into good position and blink in for the initiation.

Refresher Orb makes for a double ultimate, which can be devastating to an enemy team, as well as a very welcome increase to Treant Protector's Intelligence, HP regeneration, and mana regeneration.

Assault Cuirass provides another very useful aura (although it does NOT stack with Vladmir's Offering) as well as +10 armor and a very nice attack speed bonus. Vanguard and Heart of Tarrasque provide straight survivability.

If nature calls

"Mmm. What sort of prize is this?"

Pick up a Quelling Blade if your team consists of gankers who might benefit from Nature's Guise heavily like Pudge and Mirana. It's also useful to have one on hand when the game is aggressive early on and escapes may need to be made.

A Soul Ring is a very nice pickup in the laning stage, allowing you to spam Leech Seed for harassment much more often. It also provides a welcome +3 HP regeneration buff, and considering Treant Protector's existing health pool, the health loss from Soul Ring's active effect is negligible.

Treant Protector is one of the absolute best heroes in the game to have a Gem of True Sight on. With such survivability and an escape, Rooftrellen won't be fumbling the Gem of True Sight easily. If heroes like Riki or Bounty Hunter are giving your team trouble, it's always worth it to drop the 700 Gold on the Gem of True Sight.

Necronomicon is a nice pickup for Rooftrellen, increasing his Strength and Intelligence (which is always welcomed). The summons also benefit from auras that Rooftrellen gives off.

If your team is lacking a disable or getting wrecked by a single carry in teamfights, Eul's Scepter of Divinity can provide a really nice 2.5 second disable. The added effects it provides are just as sweet--bonus movement speed, Intelligence, and mana regeneration.

Pick up Veil of Discord if your allies put out loads of magical damage. The +5 HP regeneration and armor, as well as +12 intelligence is also a very nice buff.

And, if the opposing team is dishing out the magical damage en masse, a Pipe of Insight might be a better pickup than a Mekansm. With this item build, the Headdress pickup gives you the flexibility to make this decision easily.

If your squad is in desperate need of a pusher, picking up Boots of Travel can be an effective way for Treant Protector to fill this roll. You can push a lane freely using both Rooftrellen's right-click and Leech Seed. Then, when the enemy team comes running to stop you, cast Nature's Guise and disappear! The insane movement speed buff also is a huge help when fighting, giving Treant Protector enough speed to keep up with and attack fleeing enemies.

Gank Support item build notes

The Gank Support item build changes a few things up.

Instead of relying on stacking auras, a different philosophy takes center stage. An early Soul Ring gets things started off on the right foot enabling you to start spamming Leech Seed. Headdress stays in our build because the health regeneration for allies still comes in handy.

Having an Urn of Shadows is great for both you and your team when you're racking assists up. The mana regeneration and Strength buff is just a bonus, and for the cost, you can't do much better.

Heaven's Halberd, while expensive, is a sweet pickup for a Treant Protector on a rampage. Adding big-time damage, Strength, and evasion, this item makes you more of a threat on the battlefield. The passive ability helps tremendously at securing fleeing targets, and the active ability is great to initiate with.

Friends of the forest


"Ah, fresh fertilizer."

Pudge works extremely well with Rooftrellen. As a ganking hero who relies on positioning to eliminate enemy heroes, Nature's Guise is the perfect ability to allow the bloated butcher to get into position unseen.

You can also help out Pudge a little more by using your Quelling Blade or (and again, stop tree-on-tree violence) Tango to create a more open space for our fat friend to maneuver in.


"That will teach you to assail the defenseless."

Laning with Juggernaut as Treant Protector is a treat. Using Nature's Guise on Juggernaut, followed by an initiation with Leech Seed, an easy gank opportunity can be created with Blade Fury.


"Mmm. A fern might grow there someday."

When Nature's Guise is cast on Tiny, enemy heroes in the lane would be well advised to hug the tower. Tiny's Avalanche is a great stun to start the gank, followed by Leech Seed to slow the target, allowing Tiny to stay within melee range.


"Oh ho! Is that all it took?"

Rooftrellen and Mirana make for a deadly gank combination. With Nature's Guise hiding the huntress and allowing her to get into position, she can easily land her Sacred Arrow. After that, casting Leech Seed on the target can slow them enough to allow Starstorm to land. Mirana also has Leap in her arsenal to keep up with the target, after you've casted Leech Seed to help her out, of course.


"Be careful where you wander."

Lifestealer's slowing ability Open Wounds combined with Rooftrellen's Leech Seed makes for a scary ganking combination, almost always allowing Lifestealer to catch up for the kill. Infest works well in combination with Treant Protector's Nature's Guise. Cast the spell on yourself with N'aix inside, effectively making two allies invisible for the price of one. Together, Lifestealer and Rooftrellen can be a feared ganking duo.

Hostile lumberjacks and firestarters

Bounty Hunter

"Someone put a bounty on a tree?"

Bounty Hunter is an extremely difficult hero to deal with as Rooftrellen. His Track ability can negate the benefit that Nature's Guise provides, breaking up an escape attempt or a gank easily.

The tables can be turned, however. Since Gondar relies on the forest areas to sneak around and gank, you can use Nature's Guise on yourself and an ally to catch Bounty Hunter off guard while he prepares in the jungle.

Bat Rider

"We could do with fewer of you firestarters out here."

Batrider also poses a threat to Treant Protector. His Firefly ability can destroy the cover of trees en masse, and his Flamebreak, when smartly used, it more than enough to knock a cloaked hero out of the tree line and into plain sight.

Sticky Napalm can be devastating if left to stack on a slow hero like Rooftrellen. Make sure to not let yourself amass a stack of 3 or more Sticky Napalms, otherwise, you could be in trouble.

Nature's Prophet

"That's enough now, little tree."

Nature's Prophet presents a small threat with his Nature's Call ability. It's an easy way for Furion to take away the stealth of the trees in a hurry, and has a large radius to boot.

On the same token, Nature's Guise can be used against Nature's Prophet as he pushes. Since Furion relies on staying close to a group of trees while pushing, it can be a golden opportunity to utilize Nature's Guise for an easy gank. Remember also that Furion will be in the jungle farming the neutral camps--which creates a prime opportunity for you to cast Nature's Guise on yourself and an ally to catch him off guard.

If you bought a Quelling Blade, remember to chop a pathway through any Sprouts he may cast.

Note: If Nature's Prophet casts Sprout on you, Nature's Guise will work.


"The sun cannot find me."

Like Bounty Hunter, Slardar's ability Amplify Damage provides true sight which can be a big problem for Rooftrellen. If he misses you with Amplify Damage, his Slitherean Crush has a fairly wide radius, and he can easily catch up to Rooftrellen with Sprint.

Remember to use Leech Seed to slow down Slardar's advance on you, or a teammate.


"A tree falls."

Rizzrack is an obvious enemy of Treant Protector, virtually a direct counter if one should exist for Rooftrellen. His spells Whirling Death and Chakram destroy trees in a designated area. Avoid picking Treant Protector in situations where Timbersaw has been chosen first.

Balance changelog


  • Living Armor damage reduction is now done for all instances of damage that reduce its charges
    Previous Living Armor Behavior: It would eat up charges from all damage sources, but only absorb some damage from heroes physical attacks

    New Living Armor Behavior: Still eats up charges from all sources (including magic), but absorbs some damage from them as well

  • Damage increased by 10
  • Leech Seed cooldown decreased from 18/16/14/12 to 16/14/12/10
  • Overgrowth cooldown decreased from 80 to 70
  • Living Armor
    Damage instances increased from 6 to 7
    Can be cast through the minimap (only considers heroes and towers/rax in this mode)


Living Armor
  • Cooldown and duration decreased from 20 to 15.
  • Manacost decreased from 30/35/40/45 to 25.

  • Strength growth increased from 2.8 to 3.3.
  • Living Armor HP regen increased from 4/6/8/10 to 4/7/10/13.

  • Damage increased by 14.
  • Base attack time increased from 1.7 to 1.9.
  • Living Armor aura replaced with a new active ability:
    Target an allied unit or structure. Grants bonus regeneration and physical damage block. Dispels when more than 6 damage instances are taken.
    HP Regeneration: 4/6/8/10
    Physical Damage Block: 20/40/60/80 (hero only)
    Threshold: 6 damage instances
    Duration: 20
    Cooldown: 20
    Manacost: 30/35/40/45
    Cast Range: Global

  • Overgrowth
    No longer does damage.
    Duration increased from 3 to 3/3.75/4.5.
    Cooldown decreased from 115/105/95 to 80.

  • Leech Seed manacost increased from 110/120/130/140 to 140.
  • Overgrowth damage per second decreased from 70/100/130 to 50/75/100.

  • Strength decreased from 27 + 3.4 to 25 + 2.8
  • Overgrowth cooldown increased from 100/95/90 to 115/105/95.

  • Added a 2 second fade time to Nature's Guise.
  • Living Armor regeneration reduced from 2/3/4/5 to 1/2/3/4.
  • Overgrowth AoE reduced from 725 to 625.

  • Base armor reduced by 1.
  • Leech Seed cooldown rescaled from 12 to 18/16/14/12.
  • Living Armor now regenerates buildings only in a 900 aoe.

  • Armor reduced by 1.
  • Nature's Guise
    Now gives the unit a 10% movement speed bonus.
    Keeps the target invisible for up to 1 second after leaving the proximity of a tree, except during the initial cast.
    Cooldown increased from 3 seconds to 10/8/6/4 seconds.
    Forest Sentinel replaced with Leech Seed:
    Rooftrellen plants a life-sapping seed in his enemy, causing it to be slowed by 24% and have its life force drained over the next 3 seconds. Nearby allied units are healed by the same amount.
    Slow: 24%
    Damage: 30/45/60/75 per pulse (Magical damage type)
    Allied Heal: 30/45/60/75 per pulse
    Pulses: 4
    AoE: 500
    Manacost: 110/120/130/140
    Cast Range: 350
    Cooldown: 12

  • Living Armor reworked:
    Rooftrellen's presence infuses allied heroes and structures with a protective healing aura, increasing armor and regeneration. During the daytime, his power of nature is increased, causing the aura to extend globally.
    AoE: 900 (Global during the day)
    HP Regeneration: 2/3/4/5
    Armor: 1/2/3/4

  • Overgrowth
    Duration reduced from 3/4/5 to 3.
    Cooldown reduced from 160 to 100/95/90.
    Damage per second rebalanced from 85 to 70/100/130.

  • Living Armor regeneration increased from 1/2/3/4 to 2/3/4/5.

I think I added a few rings just now

Changes, removals, and additions:

  • Added the experimental Jungle skill and item builds!
  • Added overview on skill selection process/strategy for the experimental Jungle build to 'The power of nature' section
  • Spruced up the guide a bit
  • Added Boots of Travel to the 'If nature calls' item build slot, as well as information on the item in the 'Never enough branches' section

  • Added the Gank Support skill and item builds!
  • Added information on the items for the Gank Support build to the 'Never enough branches' section
  • Added overview on skill selection process/strategy for the Gank Support build to 'The power of nature' section
  • Added link to Steam Workshop page for this guide--get it in-game now!
  • Added 'Reference and relevant reading' section

  • Added some more meat to the 'Hostile lumberjacks and firestarters' and 'Friends of the forest' sections.
  • Beefed up the 'Never enough branches' section
  • Added the 'Balance changelog' section

What's to come

I plan on soon adding a section with some replays, VODs, and links to games with a properly played Treant Protector. If you'd like to see anything else, feel free to let me know in the comments section below.

Reference and relevant reading

Enjoy my work? I've also written guides for: Bristleback, Timbersaw, and Puck.

You can check out my personal Dota 2 blog here.

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