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Legion Commander: Guide to Safe Lane / Offlane / Jungle

August 28, 2017 by Croofe
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Build 1
Build 2
Build 3

Safe Lane

DotA2 Hero: Legion Commander


Purchase Order

General Item Sequence

Starting Items

Early Game

Core

Extension

Luxury

Situational



Hero Skills

Overwhelming Odds

1 3 5 7

Press the Attack

4 8 9 11

Moment of Courage

2 13 14 16

Duel

6 12 18

Talents

10 15

Hero Talents

+40 Duel Damage Bonus
25
-10s Press The Attack Cooldown
+60 Movement Speed
20
+10% Moment of Courage Proc Chance
+30 Attack Speed
15
+50 Overwhelming Odds Hero Damage
+25% XP Gain
10
+8 Strength

Introduction

Tresdin is a pub star no matter how you spin it. Legion Commander has one of those WTF nuke that will shred weaker foes with the press of a button. Strong dispel at will combined with a heal, and a WTF passive that has the same level of annoyance as Bristleback passive. Then lastly an Ultimate that forces an enemy to kill himself by trying to beat you. Oh, and have I mentioned if that opponent dies while ultimate is on you get a permanent damage buff that will last until the end of game?

Well now you know why Tresdin is popular.

Another reason why LC is often picked is due to her simplicity. Nuke them down then beat them in their face. But such simplicity needs tempering for it to be effective, in which this guide will cover.

Also, the jungling as LC is not a really passive one. The moment you have Duel levelled, it's time to start ganking and pressure lanes.

Scroll down if interested.

Chronology

August 27, 2017

  • Published the Guide

August 28, 2017
  • Added Offlane guide

Strength and Weakness

Strength
  • A Ranged mini-Earthshaker Ult every 15 sec
  • Strong passive even if just a mere value point
  • Strong dispel at will to save lives.
  • BKB-piercing ultimate -slash- disable.
  • Permanent damage buff.
Weakness
  • Innately countered by Silence if used as opening since LC is skill dependent.
  • Innately countered by Linken's Sphere for your ultimate.
  • Countered heavily by Ghost effect or Disarm after ultimate is casted.

Skills



Overwhelming Odds can be considered one of those OP skills when utilized properly after considering its simplicity. Basically the skills deal more damage the more units are there on the AoE. The way it works is very similar to Earthshaker's Chaos Dunk, Echo Slam, hence why it's often called the mini-Echo Slam.

In simple terms, use this when enemies are huddled up. If there are enemy creeps around them, the better.

"But OP, what the heck makes this so OP?" Some of you would ask.

Well, doing the math alone will do the job, but let me give you an example.

So in one scenario, Two enemies wants to push one of your tower. Logically, there are creeps with them to tank the tower shots. Now let's say there are 5 creeps with them, one ranged, 4 melees. You are hiding in the trees, trying to defend your tower. They don't know you are there, and conveniently they stay close to each other. As they got closer to your tower, you use Lv. 4 Overwhelming Odds from the trees, hitting everyone in the AoE.

Let's do the math:

Lv. 4 Overwhelming Odds has a base damage of 100.

Creeps hit: 5. Bonus Damage of 20*5=100 gained for the skill.

Heroes hit: 2. Bonus damage of 120*2=240 gained.

Total damage: 440. TO. EVERY. SINGLE. ENEMY.

That damage is ENORMOUS, especially when you consider that damage is not a DoT and it has a range of 1000, when combined with the Radius, 1165.

Second point, it only has 15 second cooldown.

Now if the heroes pushes the tower are 3 instead of two, add 120 damage to it.

Total damage: 560. To every enemy.

If 5 enemy heroes are dumb enough to stay close and get hit, the Total damage would be 800 to every unit in there.

Considering most nukes in the game ranges from 250 to 375, you can see why it's very strong nuke.

But there's more, you get movement speed bonus from it to catch enemies down after that huge nuke and that movement speed is nothing to scoff at.

In early game, Overwhelming Odds are used to get enemies down low and chasing power to get easy Duel, hence the need to max this first.




Press the attack is a basic skill with a surprising complex utilities behind it. Basically, it heals you and gives you attack speed (or on allies if you cast it on them), neat right?

Well knowing that alone means you only understand half of this skill.

Press the Attack is one of the only four spells in the game that can give Strong Dispel to allies. The other three being Aphotic Shield, False Promise, and Time Lapse (After Aghanim's Scepter upgrade).

So what does that mean?

It means not only you can use this to remove debuffs from Venomous Gale and the like, it also remove Stuns and every other hard disables except the ones that remove units from the game temporarily (E.G. Astral Imprisonment, Disruption). This also includes channeled disables like Fiend's Grip, Shackles.

This ability Saves lives, not just yours, allies too. So unless they are too far, or your ally act as bait for the rest of your remaining team, try to save them.

Now, there is only three moments where most of the time you want to use it: Farming jungles, saving yourself/allies from enemy debuffs, or before Duel. If you don't have Soul Ring, don't use this for farming.

There are 2 major weaknesses to this skill. If you are the one that is stunned, you cannot use this skill at all. Two, Press the Attack is a one time thing, meaning silences will shut this skill up. Unlike Dark Pact where you can prep up earlier before enemies silence you then the self purging / dispel began, Press the Attack is used on that time, and you cannot have the silence debuff to cast it.

When enemies are chasing you down and has no stun or silence, wait until they cast their ability and apply the debuff, then immediately after that you use Press the Attack, this makes sure you are free from the debuff as their skill is on cooldown. If enemies have multiple heroes that debuffs you at once, wait until all of their debuff stacked, then use Press the Attack. This will remove every debuff they placed at you, making you get away Scot-free.

TL;DR, use Press the Attack whenever to save allies, removing debuffs from yourself, or before Duel.





Moment of Courage is a very strong passive, especially after getting this skill leveled to Level 4. The tooltip for this ability is surprisingly vague, and does not reflect the ability's true usefulness.

Moment of Courage can be summed up as a child-spring from the marriage of Geminate Attack with Counter Helix.

Moment of Courage gives an extra attack whenever it procs. The animation of Moment of Courage overlaps your attack animation, but doesn't stop your normal attack. Meaning, when Moment of Courage procs at the same time your normal attack hits an opponent, both attacks are registered, so visually you attack twice in one animation.

This is why sometimes you see Moment of Courage deals attack twice while some other time only deals once.

In simple term, Moment of Courage does not mess with your attack speed at all, but only register on top of those attacks.

Now, I have said this skill is also a child of Counter Helix. This is because the way it procs is the same. Your proc chance comes from all sources as long it's physical damage. This is why it's very scary to trade hits if you are a melee against Legion Commander while laning and she has Stout Shield. She will abuse the proc chance from the creeps while receiving little to no damage in return for those creep because of the lifesteal.

If you want to manfight her at laning stage, make sure there are no friendly creeps nearby.

This is how dangerous LC can be vs Melee heroes in 1 vs 1 and how dominating she can be in a lane when no supports help the safe-laner:

Spoiler: Click to view



Sometimes, Moment of Courage can be also quite broken. Warning: huge gif size.

Spoiler: Click to view







Despite the name, make sure to use Duel as Dishonorably as possible without letting anyone escape. What you want is the bonus damage, not the pride and honor it brings. So use Duel on dying opponents, especially on early game where your damage and skill duration is low.

With that said, Duel can also be used to prevent a high profile target from escaping. Even if you do not get the bonus damage, making your ally able to secure kill on an enemy core is better than getting that buff.

After you get Blade Mail, you can use Duel to initiate ganks or solo ganking.

Talents



At level 10, +20% Gain is much more preferable. Why? because it gets you snowball harder, and prevent you to get fallen behind. Also it gets your other useful talesnt in later levels earlier.

10 out of 10 games, I always take the EXP boost, because level superiority is far more better than simple stats. Then after you get level 25, your ability to snowball does not stop, in fact it gets bigger in magnitude. It can be said that your reign of superiority begins after Legion Commander hits 25, so we want to get there as fast as possible. If you somehow get Hand of Midas because you manage to rekt the offlane hard, it also boosts the exp gain.

At level 15, the talent this take is rather tentative and very conditional. If you get many Duel wins, like per-say more than 5 duel wins before 20:00, you may want that movement speed bonus instead of bonus damage, but bonus damage can be a strong buffer to win duels if you are unlucky with your previous duels. Bonus damage is rather redundant after getting level 25.

At level 20, 8 out of 10 games what you want to take is the bonus proc chance. Only take bonus armor if the enemy goes minus armor strat (E.G. Weaver, Vengeful Spirit, Templar Assassin). Generally minus armor heroes are rather glass cannon so Blade Mail will do better damage rather than more procs of Moment of Courage.

At level 25, unless your role is purely an initiator (i.e. Pos 4 Legion Commander), always take the Bonus duel damage. This talent gives a free Divine Rapier after 6 duel wins (without its weaknesses) and making pushing high ground as easy as destroying a biscuit cracker with fingers.

Skill Build: Safe Lane



Overwhelming Odds should be maxed first before everything else as the skill acts as a buffer towards winning Duels. The damage is tremendous and scales very well in early game, also the range is also amazing.

Press the Attack is also another buffer towards winning duels, but the one you want the most is the attack speed bonus and the strong dispel, hence the lower cooldown is also necessity. Take Press the Attack at level two if you are facing an enemy that has nasty debuffs like Venomancer, Jakiro, etc.

Moment of Courage is enough as a value point. In laning stage, it's useful to tank creeps under tower when your support pulls the lane and also to win trading hits against the enemy. The reason we don't max it early is because the scaling factor of the skill only shines after you have items and stats to compensate.

Duel should be leveled whenever it's available.

Skill Build: Jungling



One point in Moment of Courage is enough to start jungling. Stout Shield will block excessive damages while the one that passes through are gained back with the lifesteal. The other point is for faster jungling and saving mana (because you are less dependent on Press the Attack for farming thus you can do level 6 gank with Overwhelming Odds and Duel.

One point in Press the Attack to restore health when jungling. This is only used when your health is reduced to less than 80% of your maximum health when jungling. Max Press the Attack last if you don't have Soul Ring, as you cannot afford the mana cost.

Max Overwhelming Odds immediately. We want that nuke damage to kill enemy heroes.

Level Duel whenever it can be leveled.

Skill Build: Offlane



90% of the time, your first point starts in Overwhelming Odds. The reason being, we want to use it to get last hits on creeps from long distances, and also for escaping if two supports tries to jump on you.

At Level two, better put a point on Moment of Courage compared to Press the Attack. The reason is twofold: One, you can jungle on secondary jungle if enemy tri-lane tries very hard to keep you out of lane. Two, you can give love tap at least two times on enemy support if he/she is a slow hero or melee.

At level three, pick another level at Overwhelming Odds to deal more damage at enemy carry while grabbing last hits using it. Press the Attack can be leveled now if the enemy carry or one of the support has nasty slow instead of stun and you want to get close to the creep balance, (E.G. Venomancer, Lifestealer).

At level four, Generally, you want to take another Moment of Courage. Mana is scarce in this moment since you want to dedicate your mana pool for Overwhelming Odds. Also, level 2 Moment of Courage heals you when farming jungle.

Item Build

Starting Items: Laning


Tango
Mango
Ring of Regen
Bounty Rune
Tango
(Shared)
Tango
(shared)

Oh I know what you are thinking. "What the heck is this starting build?"

This item build is intended to play with minimum trading hits, while maximizing harass via Overwhelming Odds. Also, as a safelaner, you would probably be babysitted for few minutes, so dominating the lane is a must. Overwhelming Odds are an easy way to do it, rather than depending on Moment of Courage.

Because you want to rush Soul Ring very quickly (so you can spam Overwhelming Odds), getting two parts of the item is good. The last part, Sage's Mask can be bought from the side shop. Getting Bounty Rune makes you only have to last hit 1 to 2 creeps to get that quick Soul Ring.

Tango is a necessity to heal between those health to mana conversion. Tango (Shared)s are optional, but very helpful since most likely 4 pieces of tango are most liekly not enough to sustain in laning stage, but buying an extra set of tango can be very costly.

Considering you will the one that deals the harassing, while your support is the one that pull lanes and farm safely in jungle, giving that extra tango for you should not be hard for your support.

Starting Items: Jungling


Iron Talon
Bounty Rune
Stout Shield

Iron Talon is a given, considering you're jungling, and you want to hit as few times as possible to kill a creep.

Stout Shield is the item that will make jungle a freaking breeze. This item will make sure you only need one point in Moment of Courage and Press the Attack when jungling, letting you max Overwhelming Odds while at the same time saving you gold from buying healing items.

Get the Bounty Rune at 00:00 mark as it makes you able to buy Stout Shield and deliver it to you before the first jungle creep spawns.

Starting Items: Offlane


1 vs 1 offlane or
no lane bullies
on enemy team

Poor Man's Shield



Tango
1 vs Lane
bullies

Stout Shield


Tango


Ring of
Protection


if you plan to stay in lane as long as possible, go with the first starting item.

If you plan to use secondary jungle, go with the alternate one.

Early Game: Laning


Soul Ring
Phase boots

Soul Ring is an item that will last until late game. You would be surprised how dangerous a Legion Commander with spammable nukes and mana to support it. Soul Rin will make sure you have mana to spam all three spells ( Overwhelming Odds. Press the Attack, and Duel) in every encounter, giving you very high opportunity to get duel kills.

Soul Ring's health cost is covered by Press the Attack healing, so the Soul Ring's active can be considered spammable as well.

Last but not least, Soul Ring gives the needed mana regen to cast one more spell when you cannot afford to depend on its active. The health regen is just a bonus, but hey, take all you can get.

Phase Boots is more preferable than Power Treads. First, attack speed is not what you want the most as Legion Commander since you already have Press the Attack to cover it. Second, the damage it gives makes the crucial early game Duels easier to win. Third, it gives chasing power to make you able to duel fleeing opponents. Fourth, it makes sure you are able to easily make opponents enter your range of Blink Dagger to initiate with Duel.

The attack speed bonus from Power Treads may scale better at late game, but at that time, you are most likely already have changed your boots to Boots of Travel.


Early Game: Jungle



Blight Stone
Phase boots
Smoke of Deceit
Smoke of Deceit
Smoke of Deceit

Get Blight Stone as fast as you can. Immediately courier use it after you buy it, this item will fasten your jungle in considerable amount of time. The -2 armor may not seem much, but the time reduced by the item for jungling will stack. -2 Armor is a flat increase of 10% physical damage, so in theory you will jungle 10% faster. And the rule of thumb to jungle is to spend the time as least as possible when jungling before starting to contribute.

Get Phase Boots for the same reason as the section above.

Get All the available Smoke of Deceits from the shop. the three item panel is just an exaggeration, but It get the point across. You want to use it for ganks and start contributing to lanes from level 6. Smoke of Deceit will be item to bypass wards, while Overwhelming Odds and Phase Boots will be the gap closer before Blink Dagger.

[/columns]


Core Items



Blink Dagger
Blade Mail
Shadow Blade


Blink Dagger is a must. You want to get duel kills as much as possible, and Blink Dagger is a very reliable tool to gap close to cast Duel. It has better compatibility to with Press the Attack + Duel combo than Shadow Blade does.

You want to get Blade Mail 90% of the time, with the last 10% filled with Armlet of Mordiggian. Blade Mail scales better when facing right click heroes, considering they will be forced to attack you during Duel., if facing heroes that relies on magic damage more, then Armlet is far better since they don't have much right click damage to reflect during duel.

Shadow Blade's main function here is not to initiate Duel. While it can be so, the primary reason to get this is to bypass visions to get the one you want inside the range of Blink Dagger and then Duel. Considering how dangerous a Press the Attack + Duel + Blade Mail combo can be for solo ganking, adding Shadow Blade can cause terror, making enemies scared to farm their jungle or pushing lanes far despite having visions like wards. This makes them unable to gain resources they need. Furthermore, you will also force the enemy supports to buy Sentry Wards, draining their supports even drier considering any available farm is most likely taken by their cores. Your danger factor is much more than Riki can ever generate, so use it well.

Extensions



Heaven's Halberd
Assault Cuirass
Desolator


Heaven's Halberd, a.k.a. the ultimate Linken's Sphere popper for Legion Commander. The disarm from this item's active is mostly used to... well pop Linken's Sphere so you can duel that guy. The stats it gives are very appreciated as well. For LC, it gives +45 damage, +400 HP, and evasion to dodge those Bash procs from Skull Basher or skills. Very nice item to have and will not fail you no matter what happens.

Assault Cuirass will not give you anything new, but will make everything you already have better. Minus armor to deal more physical damage, the attack speed means also more damage, the armor means less damage you take. Get this item if you don't need anything else other than the ability to push high ground.

Desolator is a straight up damage item. scales very well to your damage buff from Duel. Also makes you lifesteal more from Moment of Courage. Much better item to have than Daedalus for Legion Commander. This item will make any heroes your food and towers melt like butter on a frying pan. Do not get this against evasion heroes or Butterfly carriers.


Luxury Items



Abyssal Blade
Eye of Skadi

The chance you will need a Luxury item is probably only 1 in 10 games. I just put it here because it will cover any possible weakness left.

Get Abyssal Blade to fight Satanic carriers. The bash is what you want against these heroes, so they cannot use that lifesteal active to out-survives you, or reduce the active duration by getting hit with a bash when the item active is used.

Get Eye of Skadi to prevent any enemies from escaping, ever.


Situational


Black King Bar
Aghanim's Scepter
Linken's Sphere
Monkey King Bar
Armlet of
Mordiggian
Silver Edge

Get Black King Bar when enemies are dedicated to silence you or has many disable to stop you get that duel kill. Also get this when enemies have many magic damage. Most of the time, you want this more than Aghanim's Scepter, because most likely Duel duration is far shorter than even the lowest magic immunity from BKB.

Aghanim's Scepter is used to counter specific heroes. Most notably of all, when facing Meepo getting this is a must. When facing Naga Siren, this item is a strong pick as well, both to stop her from using her ultimate, or prevent her to stop your Duel with her ultimate. If you are more of a disabler than carry, getting this after Blade Mail is most likely desired. The extra duration means the ability is geared towards disable than killing, so make sure if this item is really something you need, otherwise, choose Black King Bar.

Linken's Sphere is mostly used to block Scythe of Vyse or Orchid Malevolence, or any spells that causes silence.

Monkey King Bar should be bought when an evasion hero or Butterfly carrier gets beefy enough to not die during duel after hitting your Blade Mail.

Armlet of Mordiggian acts as a replacer for Blade Mail if enemy has much more magic damage than physical damage.

Silver Edge's most usefulness for Legion Commander is not the break passive, but rather the more repeat uptime of invisibility and stats for duelling. Most likely you will upgrade Shadow Blade to this after getting other items first.

So, Laning or Jungle? How about Item Progression?

Most of the time, what you want is Laning. Laning gives you opportunity to destroy enemy lanes by spamming Overwhelming Odds, but if somehow your teammates forces you to jungle (I know I have been told to do so a few times), then go jungle.

Laning for LC in correspondence to her skillset is Offlane > Safelane > Mid > Jungle

Only jungle if there is no opportunity to laning. Better offlane than jungle that's for sure.

Now for Item Progression depends on how well your farm. I prefer Offlane the most for LC because she fills multiple role depends on how her gold gain goes.

If my lane is being shutdown very hard, I usually go position 4 Legion Commander and act as initiator and disabler. If I can easily bully the enemy carry, my role usually shifts into backup carry.

For Pos 4 Lgeion Commander, Usually I go Blink Dagger and Blade Mail as core. Then I take Heaven's Halberd if an enemy rushes Linken's Sphere otherwise I buy Aghanim's Scepter first.

Laning

At the start of the game, try to ask support for extra Tango. If they are stingy, well, just make do with what you have.

Get Bounty Rune at 00:00 minute mark if possible.

When in Lane, harass with Overwhelming Odds. When harassing, try to get last hits with the skill at the same time as well, for efficiency purposes. You can only use Overwhelming Odds twice before getting Soul Ring so make sure the last hit counts.

After getting Soul Ring, spam Overwhelming Odds while getting last hits at the same time. If the lane is pushed, use the Hard camp to pull the lane if no support is babysitting you.

Winning the lane should not be hard, especially when you have a ranged support to help harassing.

Destroying the offlaner means less core to deal with, and ultimately help you win the game.

Jungling

Starts with buying Iron Talon, nothing else.

Get Bounty Rune, then ferry Stout Shield immediately before first creep spawn.

Starts jungling from Medium camp, avoid hard camp at level 1.

At level 2, do not fight against hard camp if the camp is Hellbear or Wildwing Camp. They deal too much damage and should be avoided until you get Blight Stone or level 3.

Use Press the Attack when your health falls below 80% while fighting the jungle creep.

When jungling, always keep your health above 75%. Stout Shield will prevent most damage, but having only level 1 in Moment of Courage only returns damage not blocked by Stout, not enough to recover health, so avoid Hellbear or Wildwing Camp at low level.

Make sure to already have Phase Boots, Smoke of Deceits, Blight Stone when getting level 6. It's not hard because you can easily get these items by level 4.

At level 6, use Smoke of Deceit and gank lanes for Duel wins. Then back to jungle. When Duel off cooldown, use smoke, and get another duel wins. Rinse and repeat.

If you already have 5 duel wins before 20 minutes, you have high chance to win mid game and late game.

Offlane

Your starting items depends on who you will face. Fighting solo against Drow Ranger, Anti-Mage, Spectre, Clinkz, Wraith King? Start with Poor Man's Shield and Tango.

But at starting of the game, if you see enemy side has support with strong lane bullies like Ogre Magi or Skywrath Mage, yeah that secondary jungle will most likely be your friend. Start with Stout Shield, Tango, and Ring of Protection. We want that Iron Talon to jungle when the lane is too far and dangerous to get close by in exp range.

Starts with Overwhelming Odds, we can easily get level 2 in lane as long as we get few creep last hit. Make sure to use this ability to hurt either the carry or support while last hitting. Hide in trees if the enemy is tri-laning and the supports try very hard to get you out of lane. Score last hits via Overwhelming Odds for that Iron Talon.

At level 2, take Moment of Courage, depending on who you face, either bully the carry (on 1vs1 offlane vs safelane scenario), or if facing lane bullies supports, Jungle the secondary camp if you have Iron Talon. If you still had not have that item yet, stay in lane while hiding in trees and try to get last hits on creep with Overwhelming Odds.

At level 3, Overwhelming Odds is preferable when facing easy to fight back supports like Witch Doctor, but Moment of Courage can be taken again if the enemy keeps a very tight control on the creep wave. Don't block the camps, and try pulling the camp nearing the minute mark for maximum efficiency if you take the jungle.

Keeping a tight control on creep wave requires three person control, this causes underleveled supports and less efficient exp on their carry because they have to stay close.

This also has the effect on making your mid and safelane gank free and enemy offlane and mid to be suspectible for ganks, so even if you are bullied out of lane, but doing so has the cost of low level supports, you still win the lane.

Get back to lane and hide in trees if the tri-lane is still going but your creep jungle has not respawned yet. Steal last hits via Overwhelming Odds as usual.

Bully the enemy carry when the supports leave their carry.

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