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10 Votes

Hooks for Noobs

July 21, 2019 by Croofe
Comments: 1    |    Views: 22826    |   

Build 1
Build 2
Build 3

VS Melee in Lane

DotA2 Hero: Pudge

Hero Skills

Meat Hook

4 5 7 8


2 3 9 11

Flesh Heap

1 13 14 16


6 12 18


10 15

Hero Talents

+1.5 Flesh Heap Stack Strength
1.8x Dismember Damage/Heal
-4s Meat Hook Cooldown
+0.8s Dismember Duration
+120 Meat Hook Damage
+10% Spell Lifesteal
-14% Rot Slow
+4 Armor


Are you suck at hooking enemies? Want to stay relevant throughout the game even if you suck at getting enemy hooked? Then read this guide and change your perspective on playing Pudge.

The Mindset of this guide

  1. Be Flexible. Pudge is one of the heroes where you have to adapt heavily to the situation. Starting level 4, Pudge has to level his skills and buy items depending on what your team needs.
  2. Pudge can farm jungle well with level 3 of Rot and some armor.
  3. Pudge is a one chubby mofo. Slab some armor in him and go in your face with enemies.
  4. Suck at Meat Hook? Rather than seeing hook as a tool to displace enemies, see them as Nukes.
  5. Value point in Flesh Heap at early levels makes him able to shrug off enemy harasses and farm like a swag with Stout Shield and Ring of Protection slapped in. That's 8.5 starting regen and 2 armor in lane with damage block to trade hits.
  6. Still don't lane against enemy Lifestealer or Ursa (though he can disable them well in fights).
  7. Linken's Sphere can counter Pudge hard if you don't buy an item to pop them (Hint: use Urn of Shadows to pop them).
  8. Hardest counter to Pudge is empty mana. Buy Black King Bar to make sure your mana is not depleted by mana burns.


Early Game

Starts with Stout Shield, Ring of Protection, Tango, and Healing Salve.

Don't put a point in Flesh Heap yet. If the enemy tries to gank Bounty Rune at start of the game, Rot can be more preferable as it may net your team first blood.

When the horn starts, put point in Flesh Heap, and farm. Trade hits if enemy is melee and not Ursa or Lifestealer or Monkey King. If enemy is ranged, square your shoulders, take the damn harass like the chubby mofo Pudge can be, then retreat after getting a last hit.

1 point of Rot is suck, use it against heroes with low health pool ( Terrorblade, Pugna, etc), but otherwise wait for Rot to level 2 to use it aggressively against tankier heroes.

At level 4, start to give a point at Meat Hook. It's a very useful skill for displacing either allies or enemies. Always keep some mana to use Meat Hook in case your ally is ganked. You can save your ally by pulling him/her with hook.

Build Phase Boots first. Tranquil Boots is very much depreciated by Flesh Heap, so don't buy Tranquil. if you are mid, buy Chainmail as first component. It makes you very-very tanky to take physical harassment.

If your lane is losing heavily, use the Poor Man's Build.

Solving Mana Issues

When Pudge gets to level 6 and level up Dismember, heavy mana problem starts to arise. He already has enough mana pool for Meat Hook and Dismember in one team fight, but have abysmal mana regen for subsequent use.

Urn of Shadows is the ideal one to get here, a cheap item with 1.5+ Mana regen, enough to last you until you get to level 18. But if your enemies have armor reduction heroes ( Dazzle, Vengeful Spirit, or filled with physical damage line-up, consider get Ring of Basillius, and upgrade it later to Vladmir's Offering.

Mid Game

Getting Rod of Atos is the ideal one here. With Root to combo with Meat Hook and great stats for being tanky and mana pool, but against certain enemies, Eul's Scepter of Divinity is better to get, or get both if the situation demands it.

List of heroes to get Eul:
Sometimes though, neither Eul's or Atos is not enough. You often get jumped first, or somehow you get countered heavily with the enemy line-up, or your team plays with strong kiting. That's where Force Staff comes in. Very strong item to combo with self dispelling items like Eul's Scepter of Divinity, or Lotus Orb. Force Staff is a must against Riki

When facing heavy Magic line-up, make sure to get that Hood of Defiance. If too much high burst like Skywrath Mage or full stack of silences, get Black King Bar.

Late Game

Shiva's Guard is a very strong item for Pudge to get. He is very tanky with this item on him. Assault Cuirass can be an alternative since Pudge hits very hard after level 25 talent, and can tear down towers easily with his right clicks.

Get Lotus Orb to dispel silences, debuffs, etc.


Blink Dagger is not ideal to get unless you are ahead that Dismember deals huge killing damage or you are needed to disable specific heroes with Dismember so your team can win. Unless you are on either of those two situations, don't get Blink Dagger.

Aghanim's Scepter is great to get when your team is ahead and the enemy is turtling heavily so you need to poke their defenses with Meat Hook, otherwise it's just a very meh upgrade.

Blade Mail is rarely useful, but it does scares glass cannon away to other targets or stop attacking if you need breathing space for skill/item cooldown.

Get Black King Bar to stop mana burns, especially if you have to be in front and acts as a meat shield for your team. ( Invoker's EMP comes to mind, Anti-Mage, Phantom Lancer, etc). Pudge with empty mana is a useless pudge.

How to Hook Easily

Well... it's vaguely stated on the gameplay section, but if you need me to spell it for you:

Just use Rod of Atos or Eul's Scepter of Divinity's active on opponents, then when the active lands, just Meat Hook the guy. Simple enough.

What to do in team fights?

If you are tanky enough for your current situation, just waltz in, use Rot and start dealing damage. Dismember heroes with support abilities, and use Meat Hook after dismember.

If you are ahead and have Blink Dagger, do the Blink -> Dismember -> Meat Hook combo.

If you have Atos, use the hook method.

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