15 Votes

No longer- Stealth Assassin

October 2, 2013 by Wisdomseyes1
Comments: 16    |    Views: 41890    |   

Hero Build

DotA2 Hero: Riki

Purchase Order


Hello all. I have been on this site for a while now, reading guides and yelling at most of them as you may or may not have noticed. I had considered writing my own guides for a long time, on heroes I play avidly and well. Crystal Maiden, Shadow Shaman, Treant Protector, Lion, ect- usually global or heavy disable support heroes who need very little farm to be effective.

And as I started writing my first guide I asked myself this question: "How would this guide be any different from any of the other guides on this site". Yes, I do think that many of the Crystal Maiden guides are bad, telling you to rush Tranquil Boots and get multiple points in Arcane Aura so that you have "infinite sustainability]] or something silly like that, which is clearly not the optimal skill/itembuild- but often those Crystal Maiden guides are filled with people who readily correct those errors. Those same people who make those guides justifying their skill build by looking at dotabuff and saying that is what most people do.

So I though to myself- why bother making a guide on Crystal Maiden? Why make a guide on Shadow Shaman? There are plenty of guides on this website, and many of them are good and worth reading- even help players get into the swing of the hero and then let them decide for themselves what they think works and doesn't work.

So I didn't write that guide... or I stopped midway anyway.

Lately I have been playing games, solo queueing and 5 stacking, but very often nowhere between it. 1 Common factor I have noticed in all of these games is that when particular heroes are picked, my friends or my random pubmates complain. Spirit Breaker right now is the most common complaint, and it makes some sort of sense since Spirit Breaker is the most picked hero in the game right now on a scale of pub games (although of course now that I write this he is second-most to Pudge, another hero who frustrates people equally so)

They complain for various reasons, but the general idea is that all of these heroes I refer too: Spirit Breaker, Pudge. SA, Bloodseeker, Slark, Huskar, Troll Warlord, Abbadon, Nyx Assassin, Antimage, Phantom Lancer and on lower level pubs even Sniper and Drow Ranger can be considered "Pub Stomp Heroes". Not to say that any of these heroes are bad in any right. They all have uses in game and they al have their strengths and weaknesses. If I missed one you considered to be a Pub Stomp Hero, feel free to leave a message. If you disagree with something I called a pub stomp hero, well it really doesn't matter.

This is the first in a series of guides I plan on making in which I help new/ moderate level players figure out what steps they should be taking to deal with particular heroes that they have trouble with. Many times, when I am playing a pub whether it be solo queueing or with friends who are newer to the game (aka they also play League of Legends or are coming over from that game) people will see a hero and complain about what they have to do to deal with *insert hero here*, and then when the time comes and they play, they respond incorrectly. In my level of pub, it is embarrassing to lose to a SA, for example.

NOTE: I will NOT advocate counterpicking in this guide. Planning on picking a hero until right before the game starts so that it doesn't get counterpicked is fine, in my opinion. Picking a hero because you know it will do good against *insert hero here* is very stupid. Yes, you get the leg up on your opponent, but if I wanted counter picks, as I often do, I play Captain's mode, not all-pick. I feel like there should be a gold penalty equal to the one you get for re-picking a random hero for not picking by the time the game starts. that is just my personal feelings on the matter, but if you disagree and feel counterpicking is an acceptable thing to do and part of the game, then go right ahead and do it but this guide will not have any information on which heroes are good counterpicks for the heroes mentioned- unless used for reasons outside the instruction of how to deal with heroes.

This guide is on none other than the **** eater himself: Riki.

Why to people pick Stealth Assassin?

First and foremost, I must start with basic information about what is good about riki. Many people mess this part up, and it is extremely crucial in why riki wins games. This is true for next to all pub stomp heroes that I can think of.

Smoke Screen - Blink Strike - Backstab - Permanent Invisibility

Of these skills, which makes Riki worth playing?

If you said R- Permanent Invisibility, then this guide is for you! I suggest you keep reading. If you said Q- Smoke Screen, stick around and make sure I don't say anything you disagree with completely.


When Riki is picked up on a competitive level, which he rarely is except by the best team in the world (Alliance... not being a fanboy, I like Na'vi more because they are entertaining... but if anyone could come close to matching alliances winrate and analytical skills, I would be impressed. They Have lost... 2 games in the past year I believe? Correct me if I am wrong) he is picked up because he is a direct hero counter to Antimage and Weaver

Why is that?

Imagine your enemy team has an AM on it. Most other common hero counters to him are ban out (of whom are support heroes) OR you first picked support heroes to allow for flexible lanes, but now you need core heroes to compensate for the anti-mage pick. If anti-mage can crush the heroes you have, and his counters are generally support heroes, then you can either pick up one of the hero counter supports, which makes your gold mean less, or you can pick up rikimaru.

To explain further, in DotA 1, and occasionally in dota2, riki is picked up because of anti-mages general predictable core item build- battlefury --> Manta Style. Riki is the only hero who has the ability, once Anti-mage farms this, to silence anti-mage (preventing the use of Blink) without allowing antimage to use the active on Manta Style which is normally picked us so that anti-mage can escape silences. Riki then maintains respectable amounts of damage against antimage with a combination of Diffusal Blade and backstab , while the evasion from the cloud itself gives riki 6 seconds to fight anti-mage, but more often than not allow the team to come in and finish anti-mage themselves.

Riki is, more or less, a hero counter to anti-mage when playing well. Same logic applies to Weaver and his invis Shukuchi that makes him very difficult to catch. A silence that isn't blocked by Linken's Sphere and he cannot Manta Style out of. It is a bit harder with Weaver, since if he starts his Shukuchi before you Smoke Screen then you have no way to catch him.

On a professional level, Riki is most often seen with wisp, as wisp adds a lot of burst damage, attack speed, resilience, and chasing power to riki, as well as giving riki a global presence. Blink Strike also combos with Tether to guarantee a stun, similar to Chaos Knight with Reality Rift.


When riki is picked up in a pub, it is for 1 of 3 reasons in almost all cases:

(1) You are on a low leveled pub, just starting into the game or have maybe 10 games under your belt, and either your ally or your enemy team picks SA. This is because in a low level, riki does really really well against people who don't buy detection and people who run away screaming when something suddenly pops out of nowhere and their HP goes down to half all of a sudden.

(2) you are in a Medium Level pub "normal" level as dotabuff calls it, and someone randoms riki. More often than not, people wont pick up riki via picking him because they are butthurt from their days of low level pubing.

(3) Someone in a medium level pub picks riki for tactical reasons, strategic reasons like above, or they just straight up want to laugh if they manage to win.

Riki in this level is more or less a joke, and many times the only time you should even guess that the person is going to be good at riki is when they random it or if you just-so-happen to have Anti-Mage/ Weaver/ another hard to catch hero like Puck/ Queen of Pain/ Storm Spirit who relies heavily on their spell.

Myths about Stealth Assassin

Things I commonly see on dota comments on various websites from people, from my friends when i started playing, from really a good majority of the dota community, are things like "Oh wow riki is such a bad hero" "How can you lose to riki, he is so easily countered" "why didn't you just kill him" ect ect.

Gem of Truesight DOES NOT counter Riki. Dust of Appearance DOES NOT counter riki. Sentry Wards DO NOT counter riki. Riki can be played without his ultimate and still do well. His ultimate is more or less a luxury that forces enemy heroes to by detection to make him... well... killable. The above items are not counters to riki, but rather tools to help you catch him. Just "placing enough sentry wards" wont stop riki from jumping Crystal Maiden out on her own given the chance.

This is because, whether you see riki or not, riki will still do the same damage value that he would have had he been visible the whole time. Unlike other invisibilities, such as Clinks and his Skeleton Walk, Bounty Hunter with his Shadow Walk, Invoker with Ghost Walk and most notably Nyx Assassin with Vendetta, riki's invisibility adds nothing to the hero. Clinks gets movement speed, Bounty Hunter gets damage burst, Invoker gets a slow to nearby enemies, and nyx gets extreme amounts of damage burst (that doesn't break invisibility until he actually attacks, as opposed to most where invisibility breaks on the start of the animation). The only advantage riki's invisibility adds is that there is no duration, so it does not need to be refreshed giving enemies an opportunity to see you- and it does not cost mana by that same right, making riki less mana dependent than the above heroes who will use large amounts of mana over the course of the game to maintain that state.

If invisibility was simply countered by detection, then no hero with invisibility would ever see play on a professional level. Nyx Assassin, and Bounty Hunter are both seen semi-regularly, and Dragon Knight, Gryocopter, Alchemist, Nature's Profit and other heroes spend 3,000 gold to gain access to it (for hero dependent reasons of course)

Riki is a hero and like all heroes his weakness don't revolve around 1 skill, but rather the combination of all of his skills, his turn and movement speed, and his stat growth when compared to other heroes and his ability to use items effectively compared to other heroes.

The hero as a whole

Here are things you can probably figure out for yourself by just clicking on most of the icons that pop up throughout the guide or by going to dotawiki, but I want to explain what these things mean.

By the way, I just learned that riki is a radiant hero. Go figure.

STRENGTH growth: 2.0
AGILITY growth: 2.9
INTELLIGENCE growth: 1.3

This means: 38 HP per level, about 3 damage per level and 1 more armor per 2-3 levels (with decent attack speed growth), and about 16 or so mana per level.

His strength gain is average (about) for most AGI heroes. It is not very low like Faceless Void, Phantom Assassin, Anti-Mage, Phantom Lancer, but it also isn't high like the likes of Ursa or Broodmother. It is about where most AGI carries go. His AGI gain, similarly, isn't stupid like Phantom Lancer, but isn't to be called tiny by most.

In other words, looking at raw ability growth, Riki is just as strong as most other AGI. In reality, riki also has more raw starting armor than most of them at almost 6. At a little under 500 HP to start with, though, riki will have a hard time in lane.

Riki is actually average in movespeed too, having 300 movespeed. According to bruno when he was talking to Pyrion Flax on the 6.78 patch, and I believe this to be true, a difference of 10 movespeed is what is needed to be able to chase a fleeing target and attack it. This means, being in the middle of the spectrum of movespeeds, he should be able to catch most (not all) support heroes without much issue.

So what exactly does any of this mean?

Well... to be frank... it mean riki is just another average carry with abilities that differ from it's partners. Unlike a lot of other carries, riki doesn't have any one particular stat growth that stands out (like phantom lancer who gives up STR growth for AGI, making him squishier in the long run but hit harder overall as well)

By being average, though, he is left in a predicament where you have to compare what riki brings to the table to other carries. Riki brings inconsistent damage and the ability to close a gap- extremely similar to Phantom Assassin who has greater AGI growth than riki. Both have a slow and a dodge, though riki has a silence and Phnatom Assassin has a perpetual dodge with Blur

"Inconsistent Damage?"- Playing against riki

We are finally here, the entire point of this guide. I could have gone straight here but then, you wouldn't have learned anything. There is also a chance you just haven't read any of the above and went straight here, in which case I am saddened my hard work went in vein but at least it might help someone.

So, you are here because either you thought this was a guide to play riki and you wanted to yell at me because I put something silly like Mask of Madness/ SnY rush, or just commend me because my build is exactly the way you think riki should be played OR you are here because you legitimately need help beating riki, which is true in lower-mid level pubs. Even people in mid level pubs need help beating riki, for those of you that think you are above it, because I have seen people play against riki and make extremely bad tactical decisions, or more often than not pick 2 carries a jungler a mid and expect the solo support to cover the entire map with detection off cooldown and blame them if they cannot do that while also not getting last hits.

Thinking about riki

we have all died to riki. You have to admit that, not everyone has known how to play against riki their entire dota career. Some people have been playing for years and just got into the level of matchmaking they seldom see riki anymore and decided they don't have to worry about him, but never actually learned how to combat him.

So, let me ask you: when you die to riki, how does it happen?

In most case, the combination is Blink Strike -> Smoke Screen -> Auto attacks -> dead, with a diffusal thrown in if you escape the cloud.

This is a natural reaction, especially for support heroes who cast spells, to runaway from Riki because they are silenced and their attacks are doing no damage (because of a combination of low damage from auto attacks and 70% evasion) I understand this feeling all to well. If you are silenced, and you are a support hero, you want to naturally back up so you are not a threat, wait for the silence to end, and then jump back in when you can cast your spells because your spells are your damage.

This is, often times, not the correct move. This goes for any hero that argues that you can't attack him because of the evasion and you can't cast spells because of the silence: so carries and supports. Getting freaked out is a natural reaction- you are playing Crystal Maiden or even Orge Magi and your health bar suddenly drops 25% and you are slowed and every time he attacks you you hear that god awful slicing sound from the backstab. In your head you hear your teammates telling you that you are feeding so you do what you can to live! The only thing you know how... run. You are going to doe anyway, why not?

The reason you don't run is for a few reasons.

1) that initial burst of damage is not representative of riki's actual damage. Riki's starting damage is pretty low at 50, and scales about as well as all agility heroes do, generally needing items for his damage to be respectable.

2) The silence/slow/evasion only lasts 6 seconds. Once it ends you can use your abilities again.

But then you may ask: well okay but if I leave the cloud before the 6 seconds I can use my spells sooner and I wont have to take as much damage.

3) backstab- if you were reading point one and though I was wrong, that is because you are running away from riki. Backstab, at max level, deals bonus damage equal to 125% of riki's agility, which is where next to all of his damage comes from (and why riki doesn't build +damage items usually but rather +AGI items)

Understand, this essentially means that by attempting to run away in the cloud, you increase his damage by significant amounts. 100 damage suddenly becomes 225 damage because you tried to run away. In a low level cloud or in a max level cloud, getting out of that cloud with the movement speed slow will take some some, especially with a slow support hero like Crystal Maiden, and a squishy support no less having very low strength and agility gain.

In most senarios I see riki killing people, it is because they are isolated (from being out of possition) and react to riki jumping on them by, you guessed it, running away. A hero like Slardar, who is mistakenly picked to "counter" riki, falls victim to one because he was out on his own, got Smoke Screened and Blink Strike'd, lost a large portion of health, couldn't stun, couldn't amp., couldn't hit, and decided he was taking too much damage and turned around to fall victim to riki's everlasting crit.

In the previous section, I called riki "inconsistent damage" like Phantom Assassin. This is because his damage compared to other heroes is very heavily reliant on Blink Strike and backstab. But, no matter what hero you are, if you attempt to attack him you will often prevent a massive amount of damage. Don't think, as some of my League of Legends friends do, that the reason you are attacking him is because you are trying to kill him. In fact, attacking him serves a much more defensive purpose! By reducing the damage you take, you increase the likelihood of surviving and give your allies more time to respond, as well as adding the ability to "man-mode" riki. It is satisfying as crystal maiden to kill Riki because of right clicks and Frostbite, because most riki's are "sure they can get the kill"

is this 100% effective?

No. This tactic does not always work.

The reason isn't because it isn't a legitimate thing to do, but because dota isn't a game of absolutes. In my method I explained just now, I assume a few things-

(1) Riki is not fed. This means that riki is not getting non-stop kills over and over against particular heroes, farming 200 gold and massive amounts of experience each time he kills someone, granting him a level and farm advantage that that does not work well with normal hero progression. Riki might feel overpowered at times, but this is often the cause of him being fed. Riki, in a previous section, was shown to be more-or-less statwise the same as other agility heroes in damage growth and bulk, wile having above average armor values and below average starting HP. This means that for the most part, riki hits as hard a Phantom Assassin without her crit. However, if riki is fed, then there is a level and farm disparity here, making riki 3 levels ahead of your mid and getting his items more quickly than average because of sudden bursts of income from killing heroes makes riki, for the most part, better than other carries. Though, the same can be said for all heroes who get fed.

Note: Rather than getting angry at people who are "feeding riki", try to explain to them what they should attempt to do without being condescending. Not everyone knows how to play against riki, and there is no point in getting mad if you lose because of feeding on an inexperienced player.

(2) Riki himself is alone. This is a fair assumption I feel because I assume that you are alone, and I only ever see riki gank and go on heroes with other heroes at his side in high level play or in teamfights where he generally drops his Smokescreen, goes invisible, and then pops back out with a backstab to finish the job

(3) You are at full health. If you are at half or below health, riki has the advantage in his job to get you to 0% HP is a lot easier than your job to do the same. In many cases, if you aren't at full or at least above 75%, you are either out of position, just leaving a teamfight, or playing very very carelessly (which is more-or-less the same as being out of position)

Number one can be solved simply by people using this tactic, for the most part. He can still get equivalent levels of farm and experience, but only at a rate that carries can, not at a rate that heroes can snowball out of control. many carries generally outclass Riki by comparison in terms of what they are able to do in teamfights and for the team as a whole. A lot of heroes have more flexible options and items than riki, as well as different applications that can be equated not to killing single heroes, but rather to kill entire teams worth or heroes or constantly push while having the aggressive power to kill most heroes that come to impede (or escape from groups of heroes who would easily take them down)
If riki is fed, the game becomes significantly harder because he will, as the guide suggests, snowball.

Number 2 and number three is more of a factor you will have to learn to judge yourself. eventually I may make a guide on positioning, since it is a hard thing to grasp, but it is also a hard thing to write about since it varies on heroes on the enemy team, vision. towers on both sides, allies mobility, radiant or dire, ect. Most of the time, you want to go nowhere alone that allies can't come and help you in a hurry, and you want to go with heroes that can actually protect you (you can go with Treant Protector but he is most likely to just die himself and do nothing but living armor you, and possibly blow his ult and turn you invis. Regardless, 3+ heroes pop out of nowhere and you are dead no matter the combination.

IMPORTANT: Under no circumstance is it okay to 5 man dota because you don't want to get killed by riki. Find safe places to get farm and levels, go to those places, farm with a maximum of 2-3 people at a time, the fewer the better. They will take your towers and even get some kills. DO NOT let this affect your decision making. Your goal against fed enemies is to catch up, not yell at your supports and not to let them continue gaining momentum.

Similarly, people may end up 5 man dota int he first 10 minutes. This will get them kills and towers. DO NOT let that affect you. Spread your heroes out and use minimal effort to slow the push. The score can be 1-11 in the enemy favor and you can have no T2 towers left, but when push comes to shove they will have lost a lot of experience and gold from being together for so long, and similarly you will have gained a substantial amount. 5 man dota is only okay if your ENTIRE team has little to gain from solo farming/ experience or in short bursts to systematically take towers and then quickly going back to farming to mitigate any loss in experience (but gold in a systematic burst is generally not lost because of tower gold)

Items that can help

Items - #5-#3

When I say "Number 5 through Number 3", I am referring to farming priority. If you aren't familiar with this concept, I shall give a brief description.

Farming priority refers to the necessity of a hero to get gold and still perform the role they were designed to perform. Number 1 is your hard carry, who is usually protected by 1 or 2 other heroes in the safe lane, where Number 5 is your hard support, who will spend most of the game getting next to no gold and buying nothing but wards, boots, and TP scrolls.

This initial section is meant mostly for the supports, as many of these items don't work on carry heroes for the most part (as most carry heroes are strength and agility heroes who need +Damage or +Durability items), but that doesn't mean these items should not be used for carries. Just know that most of these items, unless for hero specific reasons, will impede your farm.

Against Rikimaru this is an invaluable tool for support heroes (and possibly even Anti-Mage. With this, you find yourself with a "push" which makes you move 600 units at a flat speed (which the wiki does not seem to have). This means that for your allies or for yourself, escaping riki's cloud suddenly becomes a viable tactic! This is because no matter where you are in his cloud, a force staff will get you out (or you are on the very edge of the cloud, so equally no worry). It can be used on yourself and on allies. Prioritize who is more important top save from the cloud if you are trapped and an ally is trapped as well, don't always use it on yourself! It also makes for a great utility item in general and is often times a good pick up for any support hero who finds themselves with the money. It is not always the ideal pick-up, though, since support heroes are responsible for detection and get little farm, and carry heroes (baring INT heroes) would usually rather not get it because it delays their farm. Still, heroes who have this as a core item or heroes who find themselves with the farm can definitely pick this up!

A bit harder to get than Force Staff, which is odd because you would think the price difference makes force staff harder. The "some assembly required" bit of Force Staff makes it nice for support heroes, giving them the ability to pay for it piece by piece without risking losing gold and gaining advantage along the way (allowing them to more easily get gold). Still, Ghost Scepter counters most every carry in the game, and is an invaluable support item for late game and being useful no matter when you pick it up. If you don't know how this item works, you activate this item and go into "gjost form" at which time, you cannot attack, enemies cannot attack you, you take bonus damage from spells, and your enemies spells do bonus damage. It lasts 4 seconds, which is most of riki's cloud duration! It is more flexible than just for riki, but against riki it is really a great item... just so long as there is no magic nukes headed your way. But hey! if they use their spells on you they aren't using them on your allies, so you can almost call it tactical feeding. Riki could also just wait for you to lose ghost form, but my friends, all this means is that the clouds duration is ticking down, and he has 2 seconds to kill you before you can cast spells again.

This ignores riki's Smoke Screen, as well as most skills on any well constructed team. It is truly a spectacular item that you will see on many carries but occasionally some farming supports like Enigma who have channeled abilities that they do not want interrupted will pick this up for those reasons. Be wary of using charges, though, as BKB charges are invaluable.

This item is a nice one if you can get your hands on it. Generally picked up by support heroes in the later parts of the game, assembling a Sange piece by piece early on to accumulate HP growth to survive fights. In the later portions of the game, if riki isn't shut down or is still causing you problems, this item is a god-sent. Strength heroes occasionally can get it too, because it does add damage and evasion, but when comparing the damage and survivability of it to other items, it is usually not worth it. That said, if your supports can't afford it and you need to shut down a carry, Heaven's Halberd is one way to deal with it. As I said, most useful on supports.
When inside riki's smoke, you are unable to use spells. Items, as you may have noticed throughout the section, are free game! Heaven's Halberd active disarms the enemy, meaning that cannot auto attack. Heroes like Spectre, Anti-Mage, and Riki are shut down by this notion, as all of their damage is from auto-attacks.
DO NOT get this item for the evasion. It is NOT cost efficient unless you are a strength hero who needs more Effective HitPoints and your armor is already at the level where adding evasion would give you greater results than more armor. Evasion scales multiplicative with your HP levels in effectiveness. This means, under no circumstance when making this item, do you ever buy the Talisman of Evasion first on any hero when making this item, unless you find it correct mathematically, which often times it is not. This is especially true for support heroes who buy this item. Talisman of Evasion is a very high cost low reward item, and you will find almost exclusively that newer players buy it first. The Heaven's Halberd is coveted for it's active, and the strength/ evasion it happens to give you are just bonuses.

A fantastic support item that can either hold enemies in place and allow you to set up, or the more common reason of purchase, to help you escape damage. The tornado stick itself is very easy to assemble for a support hero or farming hero alike. I don't like this item as much for the purposes of riki, because the duration is 2.5 seconds and you CANNOT cyclone allies. Compared to a force staff, it has less defensive use. However, if this item can set up in a way your team can respond to (being used offensively), then it is a great alternative to Force Staff.

- Functionally, the only reason these are here are the same. The add a great deal of bulk to your hero, making it significantly harder for riki to deal with you. They have no actual methods to escape the cloud, but help deal with the damage that riki deals to you while you are right clicking him. When riki gets Diffusal Blade, especially if he gets (2) early, he will be able to maintain some sort of damage while in the cloud. Not as much as if you turn around though, so the above still stands your best chance is to turn around and fight no matter what his items are unless you have one of the above items. Neither item should be purchased unless they have some specific reason for existing on your team , Rod of Atos to help chasing against heroes who aren't inherently impossible to catch like Puck or Weaver, and Shiva's Guard to minigate a 2-3 core line-up's overall damage in a teamfight while adding some AOE burst.
Note: Shiva's Guard is almost never a support item because of the Mystic Staff, but when you can get it or if the game goes on for a long period of time, it is nice. Getting a Plate Mail and then getting the rest of the parts when applicable without neglecting Observer Wards, Sentry Wards, and buyback at really crucial times is not a bad idea on tankier support heroes.

Items - #1 - #3

This section, contrary to above, is focused more on heroes who get farm. These items are generalized and fairly good on most farming heroes, while providing offensive stats to the heroes that wield them.

The monkey king bar is a fantastic item, and a very popular item for countering Butterfly carrying heroes while also providing a massive damage boost for cost. This is a great item to add consider when you are a right clicking hero who has spells who are insignificant for the purposes of SA jumping on you. This item gives you True Strike, a passive ability that means you cannot miss. To that end, Smoke Screen's 70% evasion property is rendered ineffective, allowing you to fight riki (who will almost never buy tanking items) on equal ground, but likely with reliable damage than rik can dish out.

Conceptually the same as Ghost Scepter, an honestly is worse than just a naked Ghost Scepter. I say this because there are only a few heroes in the game that can take advantage of Ethereal Blade and the one's that can are usually heroes that want to cast spells. With this, you can "Ghost Form" yourself and Riki, meaning- you can't attack and he can't attack. As a hero using this, it has very limited uses inside of his cloud, but it does have applications for saving allies. By giving Riki the ghost form, you stop him from attacking, giving them a much better chance of surviving. Since Riki has no benefit from Ghost form it tends to be a good decision.

This item is self explanatory for the most part. It is considered by many the "best" item in the game, bringing the enemy to a crawl and making anything and everything they have to a halt for a few seconds with no benefits to the player (unlike Eul's who go invulnerable, for example). I put this in the 1-3 section, because supports cannot afford the cost of this item, for the most part. Unless the game goes on really long, of course. The only supports I can think of that commonly buy this item are those that function as solo lane supports. Darkseer and Windrunner for example.

This seems like a pretty self explanatory item, but let me put this out there while I have you attention. Heart of Tarrasque is really really good for surviving because after the strength and raw HP are done, you will have about 1,000 more hit points, plus some nice sustain making you need to go back to base a lot less if you are not mana dependent. However! I list this item because Backstab does magical damage. That means, while adding armor is generally a good idea against right-click heroes (because their damage is usually physical and your EHP gain is usually greater with armor over HP) Riki's damage is mostly magical. Magic Burst is countered by high levels of Hitpoints, so heart is one of the best options of increasing your EHP against riki. Riki will not be able to solo-kill you if you have this and you are equally farmed (and often time he can be ahead and similar can be said)

Blade Mail is one of the few reasons you don't see Tinker often in competitive play. This item, when activated, reflects a percentage of damage back to enemy heroes who attack them. This is an item that can help when riki jumps on you, but requires you to let him do heavy damage to you during the duration and assumes he will continue to right click you after seeing it is activated. I personally find this to be an option that is more worthy when you have enemies who do more direct burst damage on your enemy team who you also wish to counter: the likes of Ursa come to mind.


I hope you found my guide helpful/ educational/ useful/ ect. Most of what was said is in fact in long paragraphs of text, but adding pictures to this guide? I can't think of any to add pictures too that would make it more appealing. Possibly the items section, but I cannot think of much a reason why.

I hope to making one for every hero that is considered "snowbally". Riki was probably the most straightforward, so I figured I would start with him.

Any formatting tips would be appreciated! The formatting guide in the website is nice, but it doesn't go over the construction of this type a guide, because it is quite different from other guides on the website.

Anything you disagree with feel to tell me, or offer additional suggestions in the comments.

Thank you and have a nice day.

PS: The item section is incomplete, but I can't think of that many items that are appropriate to deal with riki. Suggestions welcome :D

Quick Comment (16) View Comments

You need to log in before commenting.

Similar Guides
Featured Heroes

Quick Comment (16) View Comments

You need to log in before commenting.

DOTAFire is the place to find the perfect build guide to take your game to the next level. Learn how to play a new hero, or fine tune your favorite DotA hero’s build and strategy.

Copyright © 2019 DOTAFire | All Rights Reserved