How to Troll Pubs- Sand King
September 16, 2013
Welcome to the Most Fun you have Ever had in DOTA
This is my first guide, and one that is designed specifically to dominate in pubs and destroy noobs. Please, please do not try to attempt this build in higher-level games, as you will most likely get stomped by high level players. Also, do not use this strategy if the enemy has too many high-damage AoE spells on their side, such as Lina or Gyrocopter. Otherwise considered 'OP' heroes will melt right before your eyes, Spirit Breaker, Drow, and Sniper among others unable to combat your extremely irritating strategy. Just be wary of the opponents approaching you, and make sure that any time you attempt to use your Sandstorm, that they do NOT have a Gem of True Sight, Dust of Appearance, or Sentry Wards.
Aside from detection and AoE spells, this build is fairly hardy and easy to complete, taking down towers and heroes with ease, with one of the strongest teamfight presences in the game. So sit back, and watch the kills roll in.
ALSO: FOR A TL;DR VERSION, PLEASE JUST CHECK THE BOTTOM OF THE GUIDE
Gauntlets of Strength
As a strength hero, 6 extra points in your major stat is nothing to scoff at- this provides you with a plethora of bonuses, including a decent amount of health and a bit of extra last hitting potential. For only 300 gold, this extra strength is not as efficient as GG Sticks, but streamline the stats towards something abundantly useful, as well as building into a bracer, should you choose to buy one.
Easily the best health regeneration in the early game, Tango is one of the most cost-efficient ways of regenerating lost health without the need to stay back to prevent pesky enemies from cancelling your Healing Salve. For only 90 gold, these beautiful, tree eating leaves restore a total of 345 life to you, and can be used in 115 health increments, making it extremely useful should you want to keep your health at tip-top shape in case of surprise ganks.
Your Burrowstrike is one of the most versatile blinks in the entire game, providing not only a useful escape mechanism, but also a highly-damaging nuke and a 2 second stun. For these reasons, a clarity is vital in case your mana pool runs too low early game, which it should, considering Sand King's mediocre mana pool. This singular Clarity should make it simple to regenerate your lost mana and be able to get out of any sticky situation. This Clarity potion could mean the difference between a First Blood, or a humiliating death.
While personally not my favorite, the Healing Salve is quite handy in the case of a moderate chunk of lost life during the early to mid game. However, it is vital to remember to NOT use it unless you are missing at least 400 life, or else some of its effect is simply wasted. This reason is why I prefer buying 2 sets of Tangos over this- you must already be in a situation where you could easily be killed to be able to use this, whereas Tangos help keep your life high, and in a safe margin. However, to each their own, and if you prefer Salves, go for it! Any life regeneration early game is good life regeneration.
The GG Branch- one of the most hilariously misunderstood items in the game, and by far one of the most underestimated. Though the stat increase is meager- only one point per each stat- it is the most cost efficient stat increase in the entire game. If you have played for long enough, you will notice that as the price of an item scales up, the cost effectiveness of the stats it provides decreases as well, making the GG Branch easily the most cost efficient item in the early game, if not the entire game. However, it is impossible to get very many of them, so they are left in a somewhat misunderstood light, where their meager stats are explained as simply a way to 'score some more last hits,' or 'Add some tankiness.' Honestly, these qualities provided by the single Iron Branch are negligible, and honestly, the only reason you're buying them is because they make you just a tad more cost efficient than the enemies, which will end up helping you big time in the long run.
This section has been designated 'Pick Two' because, well, you're supposed to pick two. No more, no less. Thou shalt not get three, and thou shalt not get only one. Four is right out. The reason you only get two is because the items are cheap enough to be able to afford within the first two to three minutes of the game, thereby not delaying your core items by any significant time. These items are all situational, and one should pick the items that benefits them, and/or their team the most.
Honestly, all you're doing this game is trolling the hell out of noobs, and messing with pub players, so if your team is missing a courier by the time you have enough cash, why not just take one for the team and do everyone a solid. Trust me- people will like you a lot better than if you just bought your boots before you went and took all the kills.
Boots of Speed
Who doesn't love a good set of boots? Bad players- that's who. Picking up these boots now will not only save you 450 gold when you're getting your phase boots, but also add an extra bit of speed to chase with in case your near-dead target is escaping. Besides- a fast-running, over-sized scorpion is pretty much everyone's worst nightmare.
You hate being weak. You hate standing there while stupid Spirit Breaker and his OP little charges take all of your kills while you sit and watch from the safety of your Sandstorm. You hate that he's stronger than you, and he's probably working on his Power Treads to boot (Pun intended)! So what do you do? You build one or two Bracers out of your Gauntlets of Strength, giving you an excitingly cost effective boost in strength, agility, and intelligence. Try to top the Sand King NOW Spirit Breaker! (Remember, if you buy two, that's all you get. That's it. No boots for you. Bad.)
Are you against an annoying, spam-y little hero like Bristleback or Zeus? Is that stupid Gandalf on their team throwing endless Illuminate waves at you? Well not anymore! May I present to you the Harry Potter Stick- it beats Voldemort 10 times out of 10, and gives you mana to pop off an extra few Burrowstrikes at that annoying Keeper of Light- this time its your turn to kick him off your lawn. (Please do not get when against Passive and Toggle based heroes such as Skeleton King, Drow, and Viper, they will render your Magic Stick totally and utterly pointless.)
Usually, this is one of the most effective items early game because of its massively powerful block. If you're dominating your lane, but find yourself at a lack of tangos due to creep aggro, I would recommend that you pick up a Stout Shield to shrug off these minor hits to focus on the big bad guys. This is also very useful for when you are getting dominated, and the ranged enemy heroes continually harass you. This isn't a total solution to the problem, but its a helluva lot better than just letting them hit you.
This phase is when things begin to get very, very fun. You start being able to take anything and anyone on, and are able to provide a decent presence in teamfights, as well as delivering punishment to any towers that dare stand in your way. I know that my item choice for this phase will cause many nay-sayers to absolutely hate my guts, but please, just please hear me out and I promise you that many-a fun game shall be had.
And there it is- the item that will make over half of the readers simply click the 'x' button on the top right hand corner of their web browser- the Necrobook. When I said that the GG Stick was the most undervalued item in all of DOTA, I lied. I mean, I really, REALLY lied. The Necromicon is so utterly, vastly underratted that most people have played one game with it, and two or three against it, and proceeded to then say it is 'okay at best.' This is absolutely untrue. The Necro Book is possibly the strongest item in DOTA 2 once it is leveled up to level 3. Even at level 1 it is still a force to be reckoned with. In simple terms, if each minion is only able to attack 3 times, you are already dealing over 400 damage. This doesn't include the life drain that enemy heroes get when they kill your melee necrominion, which can be in excess of another 400 damage. On top of that, their attacks drain mana, so the enemy not only lost 800 life, but also 400 mana- and that's at level one of the book, and only factors for THREE hits, which is far less than you would get in whilst in the hectic throes of teamfights. All in all, this is by far one of the best, and most underrated items in the entire game, and will prove vital to your strategy, allowing you to push and kill like a level 25 baller.
On a less controversial note, here are Phase Boots! These fly kicks will allow you to chase down fleeing enemies that escaped your Burrowstrike, as well as allowing you to escape sticky situations and deal a little bit extra damage. All in all, I prefer these over Power Treads by a small margin. Both have their own perks and values, Power Treads being invaluable in some situations, and the Phase Boots in others. In general, Phase Boots will be more useful on an average basis, while Power Treads will be more useful when you are losing, giving you a bit more tankiness and attack speed rather than pure damage and speed. Honestly, it's up to you to decide which one you prefer, and which one will benefit you in your current situation the most.
Time to LOL
At this point, you should be having good fun- pushing enemy towers, slaughtering hordes of naive noobs. It should all be very entertaining. But what about those matches where the players aren't quite bad, but aren't quite good? This part is specifically for them, and is the build you should transition into after having much fun with your Necro Book. Remember- all three of these items work together, and in a teamfight, you could easily make a teamwipe possible from a seemingly hopeless situation.
This is, by far, the most entertaining part of the entire build. Radiance is absolutely ridiculous, allowing you to stack the 50 dps from Radiance with the 80 from your level 4 Sandstorm, giving you a grand total of 130 damage per second from doing nothing but sitting there. Also, by this time, you should be hitting like a tank for over 200 damage per hit, allowing this Radiance to easily help finish off enemies that you can't seem to catch and kill.
If there was any one item that made Sand King OP, it would be the Blink Dagger. Sandstorm allows you to turn invisible, and your Blink Dagger then allows you to hop out and escape while the enemies teem around your storm, waiting for you to appear from the cloud of dust. This also allows for easy initiations, clean escapes, and flash farming between jungles and lanes. All in all, it is a beautiful thing that is well worth the 2125 gold.
Black King Bar
Are your Epicenters being cancelled? Are your Sandstorms being interrupted by irritating AOE spells? Well not anymore! With the Black King Bar, you'll be able to waltz into any teamfight, flip off Lina, and proceed to fire off a full epicenter, ending most enemies in the general area, and following it off with a Sandstorm, perfect for finishing off resilient enemies and preparing for your escape.
DISCLAIMER: This is simply a recommended build. Everything- and I mean everything- is subject to change based on how you are doing in a game. In some games, it may be necessary to rush Blink Dagger to give you an escape mechanism rather than getting your Phase Boots and Necronomicon first. You may need to get two bracers and the courier for the team, and this is fine- everything is subject to change based on how your opponents react to your strategy. The most important rule of warfare: Even the best laid plans do not survive first contact with the enemy.
Ability + Item Combos
This section is to provide you with combinations that you will find helpful in various situations, such as farming, teamfighting, and escaping.
Combo Number 1
This combo is as follows:
2. Use Necronomicon
4. Blink Dagger
This combo is for smaller engagements against only 2 or 3 enemies, or when Epicenter is on cooldown. The Burrowstrike deals a decent amount of damage and stuns the enemy for long enough for you to pop the Necro Book and fade into your Sandstorm. Your Necrobook creeps will help your allies take out the enemies, dealing excessive amounts of damage, while you deal 130 damage per second with your Radiance Sandstorm combo. This way, you will be able to burst down an opponent, and be able to Blink to them as they attempt to escape, securing the kill for your team. From there, just take the remaining Necro creeps and throw them with a lane wave- they'll help pushing while you're off helping your team.
Combo Number 2
This combo is as follows:
1. Blink Dagger
3. Black King Bar
This is the Granddaddy combo- your bread and butter for teamfights. It allows you to initiate a teamfight whiles remaining undamaged due to the invisibility your Sandstorm provides. From here, you can pop your Black King Bar and charge an Epicenter off while you're still fading into visibility, allowing you to pump out hundreds upon hundreds of damage while your team comes in and wreaks havoc. From there, pop your Necronomicon to clean up, and Burrowstrike to any fleeing opponents- one simple, clean teamwipe.
Combo Number 3
This combo is as follows:
1. Caustic Finale
This is your farming trifecta. When in a lane, simply hitting an enemy creep once will make it explode in a bloody mess once it dies, For this reasons, you'll just hit each creep once, pop your Necronomicon, and let your 130 dps do its work as creeps continue to fight your Necro Creeps before they can make it to your team's creep wave, creating an effective pushing mechanism.
Pros / Cons
-Easily Dominates teamfights
-Great for ganking and farming
-Able to push lanes with ease
-Susceptible to harass early game
-Most combos shut down by detection and AOE spells
-Very farm reliant
-Small mana pool
Friends and Foes
4. Keeper of the Light
These are your best bets to lane with because all of them, excluding Sven, are quite item independent, and don't require lots of farm/feed to dominate late game, allowing you to get the vast majority of last hits and kills. Also, they all have either extremely powerful stuns, or extremely potent, wave-clearing spells, allowing you to utilize caustic finale to take out the entire wave in one fell swoop. Let's break it down:
Lina has a powerful stun, and also not one, but two aoe spells to clear creep waves with. She's an exceptional lane partner, allowing you to get first blood 9 out of 10 times, but does require farm. In this respect, she will rob you of some much needed cash, so there are drawbacks to this lane.
If you really wanted to push hard, this is the lane partner for you. His abilities allow him to stun enemies, deal heavy damage to them, and burst down the life of towers with ease. he is by far one of your best combinations, as he does not require any feed at all to be effective, and will allow you to scoop up tons and tons of kills.
Just like Leshrac, he is capable of producing one of the best stuns in the entire game, allowing you to slip in and grab some easy kills. Also, he has a few creep-clearing abilities, allowing for you two to make for a deadly pushing combination, taking down tower after tower with ease.
4. Keeper of the Light
This one is absolutely beautiful- he feeds you with constant mana, allowing you to spam enemies with Burrowstrike, and constantly disappear into your Sandstorm. He also produces his own deadly spell- Illuminate- which can tear down creeps and heroes alike, all the while stealing mana from enemy heroes who need it most.
Warlock isn't about pushing or strategy as much as it is about irritating the hell out of your opponents. Warlock's little circle of death is painful, but its used in conjuncture with sandstorm and fatal bonds attached to 4 creeps, your opponent will be taking trips to the fountain every time you're charged up on mana. Also, his powerful slowing spell will allow you to catch up to enemies with ease, ending their time in your lane.
Once again, you have a powerful stun, and the ability to cleave creeps away. Also, Sven comes with his nifty little party trick that allows you to move 24% faster for a decent amount of times, allowing you to catch and Burrowstrike any opponents unfortunate to enter into your lane. However, he does rely on feed, so laning with him has its drawbacks.
Avoid, for the love of God
4. Skywrath Mage
6. Outworld Devourer
All of these heroes are able to shut you down in some horrible, horrible way or another. Whether they nuke you, reveal you, or just platin irritate you, I recommend that you stay clear of these heroes whenever possible.
This evil, evil prototype helicopter will be the death of you. While he is one of the more easy to avoid on this list due to his long channel time on the only ability in his arsenal that can hurt you, that same ability can do terrible, terrible damage should you not see it coming. His level six ability will deal several hundred damage to you, and make escaping an impossibility should they decide to use some dust of revealing. While still easy to take out, he is on this list because of his utility to his team, and his possibility to ruin your day.
Zeus is another hero that won't directly ruin your day, but will definitely open up doors for his team to do so. When his ulti is cast, it gives true sight of all invisible units on the enemy team, making it possible for enemy heroes to target you while you're Sandstorming, effectively ruining 65% of your strategies. However, if you can remember to Blink Dagger the hell out of there whenever his ulti is cast, you'll be fine. Also, he's not as scary as he could be, all squishy and what not, so you'll still be able to have a good bit of fun with him.
Lina is the bane of your existence, when laning against her. She has not one, but two insanely powerful AOE spells that can absolutely slaughter you. When you see her coming, I suggest you run- hard, and fast- before she can cast fiery doom upon your soul. Once again, she is quite a squishy hero, so if she is alone, don't be afraid to pop out and burst her down before she can hit you with a Laguna Blade.
4. Skywrath Mage
With easily the most damaging nuke in the entire game, Skywrath Mage can one-shot you with his ulti while you're still in your Sandstorm, making playing against him absolute hell. Therefore, when there is a Skywrath on the enemy team, I recommend not that you be careful, but that you DON'T USE THIS STRATEGY. PLEASE.
Before you get your Blink Dagger, this is kind of a big deal. Disruptor can cast a lightning storm on you, and after you Burrowstrike out, he can return you to the exact same position you were in before, dealing heavy damage, and most likely ending you. However, once you get your Blink Dagger, he is fairly easy to take care of, so just be careful when playing against him early game.
Aside from being arguably the most irritating character in DOTA 2, Outworld Devourer can lay down some serious hurt upon the Sand King. The fatal combination of your low intelligence, his high intelligence, his Astral Imprisonment, and his ulti, Sanity's Eclipse, you'll have quite a bad day trying to teamfight against this bad boy. I recommend you steer clear whenever his ulti is active. However, once he's cast it, there are another 160 glorious, glorious seconds until he'll be able to use it again, making it possible for you to get an easy kill on him/it.
Well, you suck- I spent all day making this. Oh well, here you go:
1. Farm in lane with someone that can either nuke or push, and isn't farm reliant.
2. Necronomicon is ballin', and you NEED to buy it to make this build hilariously effective.
3. Radiance + Sandstorm = OP
4. AVOID THE HELL OUT OF SKYWRATH MAGE
5. Kill Spirit Breaker first. He deserves it.
6. Push towers with Necronomicon, and don't die
7. You are a semi-carry, so if your hard carry needs a kill- LET HIM HAVE IT.
And that's about it! Thank you all very much for reading my guide (or the abridged version) and please leave any constructive feedback you wish to provide, as this is my first guide. Thanks for your time, and have a great time PWNing noobs.