First things first! Although I am just a casual Dota 2 player, I am an avid Juggernaut fan. I mean, what's there not to love about the most attractive hero in the game? Just look at those muscles and who knows how beautiful he is under the mask...
Through my many games playing as this mysterious masked man, I have learned many little tricks that I intend to share with you throughout this guide.
First, to play Juggernaut effectively, you must select him during hero selection. Once you do that, you're off to the races! However before you choose him, know this...
Juggernaut generally struggles against heroes like:
Phantom Lancer/Terrorblade/Naga Siren/Chaos Knight
- Their illusions will negate the damage of your omnislash.
- He excels against Juggernaut's poor mana pool and intelligence.
- He is strongest when close to a hero, which makes it extremely dangerous for a Juggernaut to attack him. His ultimate can also negate the damage of your omnislash.
However, Juggernaut can do very well against heroes like:
- They rely solely on magic damage which Juggernaut has an easy way to avoid through his blade fury.
- Her refraction charges are easily removed through blade fury, and her short range makes it difficult for her to destroy Juggernaut's healing ward.
Keeper of the Light
- His big strength is stopping pushes, but Juggernaut's healing ward easily keeps your team healthy enough to continue a push. He is also squishy with no natural defense mechanism, making him an easy target for Juggernaut.
Clearly there are more heroes that either counter Juggernaut or Juggernaut counters, but these are the main ones. Use your own judgement to decide whether or not you can lane against a hero on the other team with Juggernaut.
You buy a quelling blade to help your last hitting. Ideally, you should be able to get most of the last hits due to Juggernaut's easy attack animation and above average starting damage, but a quelling blade insures that you will have no trouble making the money. If you are going the battle fury build, it is also one of the components you need.
You buy a stout shield to compensate for the fact that you're a melee hero. It provides that extra bit of survivability to help you stay in lane. DO NOT SELL if you are going to build an abyssal blade later. Vanguard, which requires a stout shield, is a component of an abyssal blade, so save yourself 200 gold and keep it.
Tangos are for your standard regeneration in lane, so you never have to leave.
The iron branch is for a small boost in stats that builds into your magic wand shortly after the game starts.
Boots of speed are clearly important, especially to help you keep blade fury damage going.
Magic wand is one of the best items in the early game. It is capable of turning a gank from a disaster to a success, providing you the extra bit of health or mana that you need to survive or secure a kill.
(For battle fury build) Ring of health is a component of a battle fury that gives you more regeneration while farming to ensure you can get the most last hits possible. Depending on how much you need the regeneration, you can choose to get this before or after you upgrade your boots.
Phase boots are the natural boot choice for Juggernaut, giving him a boost of speed to make sure you get as much blade fury damage as possible. They also provide you with a helpful bit of damage to help with killing and last hitting.
Sange and Yasha is just an all around solid item. Giving strength, agility, and a slow on a agility melee hero is very good. It is not too expensive and is a good first item to make fighting easier.
Here, this is where the two builds I have provided split slightly on item selection. One of them is the standard Juggernaut using battle fury to farm up big items and eventually win the game. This build is very good in nearly every situation. It allows you to farm faster and build items very quickly. However, there are certain situations where the silver edge build is better, especially against heroes who rely heavily on passives. Bristleback, Axe, and Phantom Assassin come to mind as examples of those heroes. That build is also more aggressive than the battle fury build, so against carries who may be able to out carry you super late, this build may be better.
For BATTLE FURY build
Battle fury gives you the ability to farm at an amazing rate. It allows you to push lanes and farm jungle, greatly increasing the amount of gold you have. Be careful to not get passive with your battle fury and only farm jungle. Push with your team or safely split push to get objectives. This is especially important against very hard carries like Spectre, Anti-Mage, and Medusa.
For SHADOW BLADE build
Shadow blade gives you a semi-reliable escape/initiation, but more importantly builds into silver edge. But shadow blade can catch an enemy team by surprise, netting you a few easy kills before they get detection.
Silver edge is the reason you wouldn't go battle fury. The break mechanic has won me many games, and has destroyed me many times when I'm on the receiving end of it. If you have picked Juggernaut and see the enemy pick Bristleback or Axe in particular, strongly consider buying silver edge. Don't think that it's impossible to buy battle fury into silver edge, but I prefer an early shadow blade than delaying it for a battle fury.
Here is where the items really depend on the game and the enemy team. Usually abyssal blade is the next item against another physical damage carry, but an argument can be made for butterfly or even blink dagger. If you're going more aggressively, you're going to need cheaper items, which could make diffusal blade an appealing option. It makes more sense with the shadow blade build. If you decide you need more survivability, which is often the case, abyssal blade is a good choice. But if even that is not enough, eye of skadi will increase your health even more. I would not suggest any lifesteal items because healing ward already provides you with very good in-fight regeneration. Basically, choose the items that will most directly suit your needs at any given time in your game. It may be different every game!
You may have noticed that I have not included manta style as an item in my build. I do concede that manta style is a good item in certain situations in the hands of certain players, but personally refuse to buy it myself. If this is your favorite item in the game, then go ahead! Feel free to buy diffusal into manta and have fun! But I cannot recommend that knowing that Anti-mage exists as a hero in the game. If you're going to play a hero who drains mana, buys battle fury, and uses manta, just play Anti-mage. He does it the best, and Juggernaut has so many other strengths that can be utilized. If you disagree with this at all, that is completely understandable and feel free to ignore everything you just read.
Here I will discuss the skill build. Juggernaut's skill build is pretty set across all builds everywhere. That skill tree is making blade fury as fast as possible while picking up a level in the other two skills before level 6. But depending on the game, an argument can be made for maxing healing ward of the crit. So decide whether you need the survivability or damage more and stick to it. Clearly level talants and omnislash whenever possible.
For the two builds I have provided, the talent choices are fairly obvious. Take the +5 to all stats for the boost in health and damage. Take +25 attack speed to help your damage and therefore your farming speed. Take +10 for the survivability and take +5 omnislash strikes for more damage in your ultimate. The other skills are mostly for situations when your blade fury is the most damaging part of your many skills, which never happens. However, if the enemy team is continually able to kill you throughout the game, you could take every talent below +600 health for the survivability, but that's not ideal for your damage output.
With any good support with a stun or slow, kills should be fairly easy in your lane. If the offlaner gets too close to the creeps, have the support stun or slow them and use your blade fury on top of them. It does a large amount of damage, even at level one, just be wary of a turnaround. Keep creep equilibrium so you can get every last hit you possible could and farm up. Omni when there are very few creeps around so the hero damage is maximized.
This has been a guide from a casual player that will continue to be updated and refined if I discover anything worth sharing.
Feel free to comment all your complaints (cause there will be many) and I will try to address them as soon as possible!
Combos section coming soon!
Additions to every existing section coming soon!