this is my first guide, and I would like to introduce you to one of my favourite heroes in the history of Dota, who is Mortred, the Phantom Assassin.
"Mortred the Phantom Assassin is a melee agility Hero fitting the role of hard carry. She is best-known, and infamous for, her ability to inflict staggering damage with single strikes. Her abilities synergise supremely well with each other, rendering her an extremely formidable foe at all stages of the game. She is a very farm-dependent melee Hero, but she farms creeps with much more ease than many of her fellow carries due to her abilities."
Critics are welcome, since I want to train myself in things like these, so suggestions or tips will help me! :)
English is not my native language, so you will surely find some mistakes.
If you aren't familiar with this hero I would suggest you to look at Dotacinema's video below
Let's get to it.
Through a process of divination, children are selected for upbringing by the Sisters of the Veil, an order that considers assassination a sacred part of the natural order. The Veiled Sisters identify targets through meditation and oracular utterances. They accept no contracts, and never seem to pursue targets for political or mercenary reasons. Their killings bear no relation to any recognizable agenda, and can seem to be completely random: A figure of great power is no more likely to be eliminated than a peasant or a well digger. Whatever pattern the killings may contain, it is known only to them. They treat their victims as sacrifices, and death at their hand is considered an honor. Raised with no identity except that of their order, any Phantom Assassin can take the place of any other; their number is not known. Perhaps there are many, perhaps there are few. Nothing is known of what lies under the Phantom Veil. Except that this one, from time to time, when none are near enough to hear, is known to stir her veils with the forbidden whisper of her own name: Mortred.
Phantom Assassin's Pros:
- Pro ganking/escaping abilities
- Nice base movement speed
- Relatively easy to play
- Nice stats gain
- Best crit in the game!
Phantom Assassin's cons:
- Very item dependant
- Very fragile to disables and casters
- Weak early game
[Q] Stifling Dagger
This skill is a very powerful farming tool. Consider it deals pure damage! Rememeber that it deals at its max 200 damage to creeps, and only half of that to heroes. 50% slow is also very good to chase enemies or at the same time to secure an escape for you and your allies. It is important to upgrade Stifling dagger as your first skill, because the duration of the slow and the damage output of it increases for each level; and trust me, your enemies will cry in fear when they see they can't get away for 4 seconds.
[W] Phantom Strike
With a low cooldown of 5 seconds, this skill grants you a 100% bonus attack speed for 3 seconds when you are blinking to an enemy target. Awesome to harass when you evaded a dangerous situation. Notice that you can blink to "any unit", that means you can use it also on allies or creeps to plan a great escape!
I max it soon after Stifling dagger because Phantom strike allows Mortred to much more mobility: chasing and escaping. the range will be same for each level, 1000 , however a blink every 5 seconds instead of 14 is a huge difference.
Blur is an awesome passive, one of my favorite in the entire game; from the first rank, that I usually get at level 4, you get 20% dodge chance, which is good! I actually max it last, because from rank to rank the dodge chance only increases by 5%; [Consider that at its max rank, 35%, you will have more dodge than with buying a butterfly! Remember it doesn't stuck with Butterfly though!] An important thing to remember is that if an enemy hero is close enough to you, your icon will vanish from the map; most of the time mate's enemies won't pay attention to someone you are killing, because they aren't seeing you!
Sadly, when your enemies will buy a Monkey King Bar you will be prevented to dodge attacks.
[R] Coup de Grace
Coup the Grace is Mortred's bread and butter ultimate. Not much to say actually, on each attack you have 15% chance to make 450% bonus damage, yumm! Enjoy seeing your enemies' life bar disappear.
Early Game Strategy
First of all Phantom Assassin should obviously go top for Dire and bottom for Radiant, since those lanes allow you a near tower and also a better farm.
If played wrongly early game, Phantom Assassin's late game and mid game will be affected. The easiest way to farm in early game is to use carefully our Stifling Dagger, when creeps have low health; once they get 1/4 health, since it would be useless to waste our skill when they don't die and the enemies deny that damn creep.
Derp, early ganking is strictly not advised. If it goes wrong, it will make you trouble reaching your items. When possible, let your allies attacking the enemy, and while they are trying to escape throw a dagger. It doesn't really matter who gets the kill, the important thing is that you have to return to your lane as fast you can, and keep farming.
Mid Game Strategy
Only try to gank mid when you have at least from 2 to 3 core items. Start searching for some lone heroes, or heroes that are lower leveled than you. Start with Phantom Strike in case they haven't seen you, hit them for a while, hoping for a Coup de Grace. Once they run, throw a Stifling Dagger to slow them down and secure a kill.
If you see instead that your enemy is running away, start with your Stifling Dagger and then go for a Phantom Strike, it's way more difficult to get a kill this way, because your target can easily run under tower, so don't be greedy, and pay attention! Also, before going in, analyze the situation and ask yourself whether it is worthy or not; most of the time, if they have allies there, it is best to play safe.
Still farming.. Yep
Yes, when you aren't ganking mid or other lanes you should still keep farming if not too dangerous. Try to avoid staying in the middle of a lane alone, since you will be 99% ganked by enemy team. You rather prefer to kill some neutrals, at least in the jungle you'll be safer!
Late Game Strategy
Roshan late game:
Roshing late game for Phantom Assassin alone is not really a problem. Check for a rune, a Double Damage surely would come in handy. Just attack and enjoy seeing him dying. Always remember that It would be best to try solo Roshan once you got a lifesteal Item for some health recovering, Coup de Grace Will help you surviving against Roshan's stuns
Late Game Teamfights:
You always have to keep track of what is going on, because a second of distraction could easily let your team to lose a teamfight. Remember to NEVER initiate, because enemy heroes would start focusing you, and you would be dead even with your Black King Bar. Just try to take out the other team's most fragile heroes that can destroy your team, so that they lose a valuable mate. Then, the rest of the fight just continues, and you should repeat the previous phase: keep focusing squishy enemies, and you will surely win!
Some Tango and a Healing Salve will do some regen for our laning phase, while 3 Iron Branch will grant us some stats. Finally a Stout Shield is for survivability.
Now as soon as you can you should get your Boots of Speed for your survivability and eventually ganks. After this a Poor Man's Shield will protect you with a minus of 20 damage from each heroes, not bad, eh? Now it's time for your Magic Wand, the ironwood branches will free a lot of space, in order to get your Ring of Health, and then by going into the shop converting it into a beatiful Perseverance thanks to which you will not lack of mana for a while.
Your Power Treads are calling, time to get them! I see that a lot of people prefer to take Phase Boots, but sincerely I like more The first one, since they provide some extra health and base attack speed, so that you don't have always to count on your Phantom Strike thingy to kill.
Dun dun dun, Battle Fury! Rush for it, you'll get easy kills and farm with it!
Most of the times it is considerable to buy a Black King Bar, because of the lots of stuns and disable that counters poor Phantom Assassin. With THIS item, you'll become a killer-truck.
Finally buy a Skull Basher, with your Phantom Strike you will easily stun, rendering the target useless and consecutively kill him, simply!
A Desolator will do the trick, if you are lucky with a single blink you can reduce your target's armor, stun him and then eventually get a critical strike.
If you feel still squishy try to buy an Assault Cuirass, it will provide you some bonus armor and at the same time an AoE debuff armor.
An item that could get either is Abyssal Blade, by upgrading the Skull Basher, which gives to you a powerful stun and even more damage. Oh remember that the stun goes through Black King Bar!
Finally if really really REALLY think you will need it you can get a.. Divine Rapier! Simply to explain I guess, more damage -> more lifesteal -> more crits -> more fun. Pay attention though, since you will drop it when you die. An eventual loss would mean a 100% blame from your mates, care.
Now the last thing you really need is some health recovering... mmh, the choices are multiple. I usually rush for a Vladmir's Offering, because it is an aura (which stacks with everything) that gives a 16% AoE lifesteal while granting you a beautiful +15% damage output. Most of the times though it is considerable to let supports buying it, so speak carefully with your team before getting it. Many other heroes in fact, as suggested, turns out to actually need more this items's buff than our Phantom Assassin
If that doesn't suit you, don't hesitate buying a Satanic, Phantom Assassin with it will become pretty sick. Just think of its benefits: 175% lifesteal for 3.5? For a carry like Mortred a crit of above 1000 would mean to refull her health!
Another great way to gain life is obviously getting a Heart of Tarrasque, thanks to which you won't be so squishy and at the same time you'll regen a lot! With it your survivability will definitely increase.
When you can always try to pick up your Aegis of the Immortal, you are the carry, you are the one who needs to be alive and kicks ***es when your team mates are in danger! With this item, next teamfight will turn out 90% as a victory for you and your allies.
If Aegis of the Immortal has already been picked up, try to take the Cheese, at the right time it can save your life!
Well, Phantom Assassin has a lot of allies that can easily help her. Most of them are disablers and stunners.
Frostbite + Arcane Aura. Crystal Maiden's stun and aura can really make you become a great Thread, with your spammable daggers and blink, too!
Little Ogre Magi can Fireblast a target for a lot of seconds if lucky! Also he can slow enemies with his Ignite and at the same time boost you with his Bloodlust!
Lion's disable are just perfect for Phantom Assassin, in fact while he is fidgeting with his Earth Spike and Hex you can hit your enemy as much as you want while he is on your side!
Same as Lion, Shadow Shaman is a great ally.
Windrunner is a great hero to combo with, since if she's good she can stun 2 enemies with her Shackleshot, which means you are free to do what you want.
Vengeful Spirit is a fantastic mate that can stun and do a good damage with Magic Missile and boost your Attack damage with her Vengeance Aura. Wave of Terror is really helpful for the -5 armor debuff as well!
Warlock Will help you out in the early game phases by Shadow Wording you. Very interesting combo in teamfight: just imagine his Chaotic Offering + Fatal Bonds and your fantastic Coup de Grace in the middle of that! WoW!
Dazzle is one of my favorites supports to have in lane, because he will constantly keep you healed and safe with his Shadow Wave. During teamfights, if he Shallow Grave you, you'll be truly free to hit enemy's heroes as much as you wish.
Magnus works particularly well with you for 2 reasons:
Number one -> his Empower will provide you some extra bonus damage and cleave in case you still don't have your Battle Fury [And if you have it.. well some more cleave!]
Number two -> his Reverse Polarity in teamfights will allow you to hit freely!
Lich is a great ally to have in lane, because of his supportive Ice Armor, that will grant you some extra armor you at first lack. Frost Blast is also very good to slow enemies in combo with your Stifling Dagger, and most of the time, securing a kill!
PARTICULAR ATTENTION MUST BE PAYED TO THIS ALLY, THE BEST Phantom Assassin CAN GET!
Remember we said that our Phantom Assassin is pretty fragile to casters? What If I remember you that Omniknight has a beautiful skill called Repel that will make you become immune to a wide range of spells for 12 seconds? Obviously He will never replace your Black King Bar since he will be busy enough to keep other mates alive, but with his Purification it will be very difficult to you to die! Think about it.
On the other side there are a lots of heroes that can easily counter Phantom Assassin, or at least until she gets her beloved Black King Bar. Most of the time her worst enemies correspond to her best ally, just look above and think if they were all against you, *shivering*.
Besides the majority of heroes I listed above, the most annoying enemies that we can get are:
I hate Bane. Everyone hates Bane, Phantom Assassin hates Bane.
His Enfeeble Will drammatically reduce your damage and your crit damage. What's worst?!
Oh yes, Nightmare and Fiend's Grip.. ****.
Razor, I hate him too, you know? If you don't pay sufficient attention, he will steal 254 damage with Static Link from you, this means no more damage for Phantom Assassin, Darn.
THIS IS TRULY Phantom Assassin'S WORST ENEMY, BAN HIM WHEN POSSIBLE OR HE WILL RUIN YOUR GAME!
Oh oh oh, Doom. Hi you little Satan Spawn. Yes, We all know that when you cast your ulti, Doom, Phantom Assassin won't be able to get passive benefits and can't cast spells. Exactly, this means you won't Blur or Coup de Grace more. Or at least for 15 seconds. Hope you know that teamfights usually are long that time, and you can't do anything while your are doomed, Nope. You will only be a useless chicken, that can't even blink.
There aren't really all tha kind of situations whether your should pick our Phantom Assassin or not. You just have to think about this:
-> Team hasn't alot of stuns/disables? Great, When my Battle Fury is ready, if I feed, it could turn into an easy victory.
-> Team actually has a lot of stuns/disables? Darn, probably I should play safer, paying attention to enemy's heroes, until I get my Black King Bar as soon as I can; after that I could carry my team to victory!
Or at least this is What I think during a lots of games, It only depends on whether you think you can handle the situation or not, It's up to you!
I would like to thank every person that will comment this guide, since I spent a lot of time for it; as i said in the Introduction, critics are welcome, This is my 1° guide and I'd like to learn as much as possible from you, guys :)
Thanks to Ebrithil, who helped me setting a lot of things of this guide, and that have granted me to post it today, here, on Dotafire!
Thanks to Icefrog who kept developing Dota.
Finally thanks to Valve, that created DotA2 in collaboration with Dotacinema, I love you.
I truly truly TRULY have fixxed many times this guide since the first comments were published.
I found out only now, a week later since when I started changing many things, that i had to press "PUBLISH" again to apply the fixes and let people see the complete guide.