Juggernaut is an incredibly fun hero to play. If you're not sure which carry to pick, you can't go far wrong with a Juggernaut in many situations! With this guide I'd like to focus on how you might play him as the team's number one in a tri-lane to conform to the current meta (and my own experience).
Please feel free to give me any feed-back or suggestions for additions to the guide. Any questions you might have will probably work their way into the guide too at some stage!
Thanks for reading my first guide ^^
Still to add:
- Friends and foes/when to pick
- More in-depth situational item discussion
- Playstyles in relation to phases of the game
- Build and skills for mid (number two)
He's essentially a melee agility carry with a 2.85 agility gain per level, which is towards the top end of the spectrum - this gives him a high damage and attack speed gain per level but leaves him relatively squishy with a lower strength gain. His real power lies in his high damage output, and the strong synergy that it has with his ultimate ability.
- Decent agility gain, making for a strong mid-game carry
- His first skill offers a free escape provided you have a TP scroll!
- Good Battlefury carrier making him a mean farmer
- Can push lanes and towers better than the average hero with Healing Ward
- Free critical hits with 3rd skill
- His ultimate provides invulnerability and deals ****-loads of damage
- Looks rad
- Quite squishy without big strength items
- Suffers from serious mana problems earlier in the game
- A poorly timed/positioned ultimate is a wasted ultimate
Juggernaut is at his best when making use of his ultimate to secure solo kills early in the game. Remember that it should never be off cool-down; kills mean gold and the faster you can turn a level 1 ultimate into a level 3 Aghanims ultimate the better!
As is obvious from quickly glancing at the stats, Blade Fury has a static duration, remaining at 5 seconds across all 4 levels. It also gives magic immunity meaning that enemy heroes can't target you with stuns, items or other spells. However, the damage dealt over time loses it's usefulness as the game progresses and enemies become bulkier in terms of their HP.
- It can be used to incredible effect as simply a way of increasing your damage output early game. At level 1 it offers 400 damage if an enemy stays within the radius for it's full duration. On top of this, you can use certain items during it's active period, such as treads or phase boots and your normal right click damage is applied provided you remember to attack the enemy as well!
- It is one of the most effective early game escape methods available. If you remember your ABCs of Dota (Always Be Carrying a TP scroll!) you can quite easily use the skill and TP away whilst magic immune and thus un-stunnable meaning that the enemy cannot cancel the channeling (there are some notable exceptions, such as Faceless Void's ultimate).
This sounds silly, but be aware that you can move your healing ward around! At the very least, select it and right-click yourself. I generally feel that the mana cost for this skill isn't worth the pay-off for using it in the early game, but as the heal is percentage based it scales well into the late game. I'd suggest leaving skilling it until you've maxed out everything else, but you might find it useful to deal with excessive harass in lane.
- Replenishes health, so as long as you've got plenty of mana regen it can be spammed to deal with harass/creep aggro/survived gank attempts and allows you stay in lane last-hitting.
- The fact that it heals in an area becomes really useful to sustain team tower pushes
- Can be used to heal yourself and creeps if you're solo pushing a lane/tower
Most would recommend that you don't skill this until later as it's percentage based. I personally feel that the possibility of doing double-damage should never be overlooked and it can be incredibly devastating if you're right-click harassing your opponent in lane. I'll leave the decision up to you.
- Deals huge damage if it procs whilst you're harassing (although bear in mind that harassing is primarily your lane support's job)
- Helps to secure kills
Juggernaut jumps from enemy to enemy, dealing the designated number of slashes (upgrade-able significantly with Aghanim's sceptre). It is almost impossible to stop - however you cannot direct who you attack after targeting the first enemy. This poses several problems:
- Creeps. Whilst you may hold an irrational hatred for enemy creeps and a rational love for the farm that they provide, if an enemy walks within range (around 300 units?) of their creeps there's a chance that Omnislash will be transferred to that wave. You'll decimate the wave but miss the kills. It is essential that you used your ultimate away from enemy creeps.
- Heroes. Especially when your ulti is still low-levelled, it's far too easy to miss the kill by targeting a group of heroes. If they crowd together, your damage will most likely be relatively evenly spread amongst them, and they'll kill you shortly after. That being said, if used during or to initiate a team-fight, the spread of damage can tip the balance in your team's favour.
- Solo kills whilst roaming. Target the squishy heroes to guarantee a kill.
- Dealing massive damage during teamfights. Remember to ensure you use it when there's no enemy creeps around.
If communication is good with your team, it's a great idea to ensure that the lane supports will bring extra regen items with them if you think you'll be up against a tough lane. Similarly, you can make sure that you purchase appropriate starting items like branches or a Stout Shield to improve your survivability.
That being said, if you predict an easy time in lane it's best to go for items that will improve your last hitting.
From here, you really need to assess what's going to happen in the game to know where to progress to.
- If you're going to be pushing a lot, build a yasha as you might need a manta style in the near future.
- If the enemy carry is happily farming away and you think they'll probably have out-farmed you when it comes to a team-fight, work on a battlefury so you can easily farm the jungle. The extra regen is also nice, especially if you pick up the ring of health earlier on to improve your longevity in lane.
- If you fancy your chances roaming and ganking, an early Aghanim's sceptre will ensure you snow-ball into an unstoppable force provided your roaming is efficient! Remember your Dota ABC and carry a TP to escape from sticky situations and smoke of deceit to cross warded areas without being detected. Roaming isn't really your business as the team's hard carry, but Juggernaut is so good at it it seems silly to leave it out
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