Items by Role
Mid Starting Items
An early Bottle
isn't as important on Skywrath Mage
, because of his high base INT. Instead, I go for a little lane sustainability and maximum damage for last hitting.
Support Starting Items
Someone is going to have to buy Animal Courier
and Observer Ward
s. Since you are a support, this falls to you. Since you are going to be using a lot of mana spamming Arcane Bolt
to harass and zone their offlaner, I included a Clarity
. For when you are going for a kill, the burst mana regen from Enchanted Mango
can go really far in terms of damage. Depending on if you are or are not the only zoning support in the lane, Smoke of Deceit
may or may not be good. The idea is that you gank the enemy mid at about 6-8 minutes with the smoke. Basically, at level 4-5. Just come from behind and try and blow them up. However, this isn't a good idea if it means that the offlaner will get free experience. You should buy a smoke if there is another support that can zone the offlaner in your absence. Lion Lich
, and Oracle
are good examples.
Mid Early Game
The dust and the smoke are in there situationaly, and the rest is kind of standard. Dust is for if you are want to kill an invis hero, and smoke is on there for when you gank. When you gank with Smoke of Deceit
you can sneak under wards and blow up their squishy carry. For example, if you kill a Naga Siren
before they finish a Radiance
, you now have a large advantage. The Bottle
is in there because you are a mid and probably want a little regen, and the Arcane Boots
are in there because you need a bigger mana pool for your ult. A Mystic Flare
while you are level 6 will take up about 80% of your mana pool. That means to do a combo, you need about 110% of your mana pool, which obviously isn't going to happen. Thus, we build Arcane Boots
because it gives very cost efficient max mana. ALWAYS CARRY A Town Portal Scroll
Support Early Game
As a support, it is up to you to buy support items like Flying Courier
, Observer and Sentry Wards
, and perhaps some Smoke of Deceit
. What little gold you have left can be spent on Boots of Speed
and a Magic Wand
for some efficient... everything. You should still always carry a Town Portal Scroll
Rod of Atos
is probably the most insanely good item possible on Skywrath Mage
. It gives INT, which is manapool, and it gives survivability that, while inefficient, you still would like a little more of. The important thing, however, is the active. I explained it earlier, but 40% + 60% = 100% slow. It lets you snowball in a way that is kind of bonkers. That snowball can run over the entire game. Many people don't know how to play against Skywrath, so their stupidity is your gain. The void stone is just there because you need some sort of percentage based mana regen, and why not pick it up now, because you can build it into something later.
Support Midgame (One boot and one stick)
As a support, you don't have to worry about scaling into the late game or getting pickoffs. Therefore, you can invest into utility, survivability, and more support items. Eul's Is very useful for removing silences, and is just a really good item in general right now. The mana cost doesn't even matter, and you can combo the abilities of other heroes with the active. As dumb as it sounds, Eul's Scepter of Divinity
into Split Earth
into Mystic Flare
. Atos is good for survivability, and It lets you kite certain carries. A certain ability to gank also comes with it. It might as well give damage like a Dagon, because it lets you get damage out of your ultimate. Force Staff
is good to save people and for mobility, but It may also be good if there is someone like a Clockwerk
in the game. Wards are, of course, the responsibility of the support. The choice between boots is yours. If you feel like you need a bigger manapool this game, get arcanes. If you need armor, get tranqs. The closer to zero the ammount of armor you have is, the the more one point of armor will do for you. Since Skywrath basically has zero armor at most stages of the game, you need this if they have ANY armor reduction whatsoever if you don't want to get two-shotted.
Mid Late Game
With Scythe of Vyse, Mana regen is no longer an issue. Make it out of the void stone from earlier. The extra lockdown comes in handy too. Landing your ult has never been easier, and I's already good for locking down their carry, the conventional reason you get it. It also makes your manapool really big, so that you can land 3-5 ults on someone with Aghanim's Scepter
. 1400 damage * 3-5 = 4200-7000 magic damage before reductions, not even factoring in Ancient Seal
. Nobody can live through that. Simply blow up their carry before the teamfight begins.
Support Late Game
Scythe of Vyse
is good because you can lock down their carry, and help chain stun them and blow them up before they can even BKB. Or, if their carry is snacking on the faces of you or your friends, you can hex them. Ghost Scpter simply is there to keep YOU from getting snacked on. Skywrath has poop armor, so if someone starts right-clicking you, especially if they reduce it further, it'll hurt. With a Ghost though, you're safe to keep doing what you do unless you get silenced, in which case you should have bought or you should buy a Black King Bar
or Eul's Scepter.
Mid Situational/Luxury Items
Aegis of the Immortals- If you can get one, Aegis is good for the same reason on Skywrath Mage
as it is on Storm Spirit
. They blow through large protions of their manapool to do things. They are also cores that don't want to die in a fight anyway, because they are likely a significant portion of their team's damage. Blow all your mana instagibbing a couple people, come back, do it again, and hopefully live to tell the tale.
Black King Bar
- Dispels silences and stops AoE spells like Echo Slam
. Getting killed before you use all your mana might make you lose the teamfight. This keeps you from getting focused down before you can use all of your spells and stick around DPSing with Arcane Bolt
for a while.
- Blink can help you snowball after you get Atos. If they show up in lane, you can slow from the normal 1600 range, blink next to them, Atos, and blow 'em up. With a blink, you can also blink silence them from 1900 range away and blow them up like that. You have really big kill potential with a Blink, and the usual utility that comes with a blink purchase is good too.
Dagon- I know what you're thinking. Dagon? Really? However, It is actually a very efficient item. Ancient Seal
amplifies Dagon damage, sort of like Decrepify
. Dagon also gives ok manapool for it's cost. So, it works.
- EBlade Dagon is legit. The 40% bonus magic damage stacks with the 45% from the ancient seal. Additively, I might add. Base magic resist also stacks additively. So, on a normal hero, you have -60% magic damage. Let's do some math. Let's assume that all you have is Null Talisman
, Dagon lvl5, and Ethereal Blade
You're also level 16. This gets you up to 118.6 INT, but let's say 118. Ethereal Blade
amplifies it's own damage. After all this math, Eblade does 497.6 damage(let's round down again), and Dagon does 1280 damage. This adds up to 1777 damage at level 16. It gets bigger.
- If you don't want to get killed by minus armor heroes or gankers, get one. It'll save your life and let you get off your spells in teamfights.
Eul's Scepter of Divinity
- Purges silences, and can set up combos. You can also Eul's and run away, because hey, movespeed.
- A mobility item, and you need one if a Clockwerk
is in the game on either side. You can also break Linken's Sphere
with it, which can let you Ancient Seal
sucks. Like, really really sucks.
Boots of Travel
- Once it is the late game and everyone else has them, why not follow suit?
- Bloodstone should always be rushed before 20 minutes if you chose to go this route. Believe it or not, Bloodstone is a farming item until later. It basically just gives you infinite use of Arcane Bolt
. This lets you farm really fast, because you can just use it every two seconds. The thing is, until you get a Rod of Atos
on top of this, your ability to kill someone on your own is kind of low. The good news is that it isn't that far off, especially now that you have a farming item. Once you have an Atos on top of your Bloodstone
, you can start racking up charges and farm somehow even faster.
- Shadow Blade is a ganking Item. I'm not one of those people who says "escape." SB is a nearly 3000 gold item directly countered by an item that is two for 180 if used as "escape." SB can be good after Atos if you want to put a lot of pressure on the map. Which, of course, is what Skywrath mid is made to do. It can also be made into a Silver Edge
later if you need more HP and want keep ganking.
- Shiva's is for if you need a bigger manapool and more armor. The good thing about having **** armor is that the worse your armor is, the better armor Items are. That makes Shiva's Guard
a VERY efficient Item. It also has the conventional use of being an anti-carry Item.
Gem of True Sight
- Just about any ranged hero can make good use of a gem. While you're roaming and ganking, if you find wards, you can kill 'em. If they have invis heroes, that's just a bonus.
Support Situational/Luxury Items
- Although it isn't seen all too often, If your team needs the damage, you can itemize like a core and get an Agh's. As long as you still have a big manapool it's just as good.
Black King Bar
- Dying early on in a teamfight isn't really an option, because even as a support you are probably a large percentage of your team's damage. A BKB Is useful if you keep getting silenced, chain stunned, or blown up.
- A blink is a really strong item in general, and situational on most all heroes, especially supports. Help save your carry from longer distances.
- If you have an Agh's, a cheese is the same as about 2000 damage. The mana can be used to
Hand of Midas
- If you can get a midas on most any support by 20 minutes, the GPM it gives greatly accelerates the farm of the hero it's bought on, especially if they have no way to farm and enjoy extra XP. The XP usually translates into GPM just because it lets you farm faster if you have more INT, and it is easier to get kills if you are a higher level. This is perfect on Skywrath Mage
without a Bloodstone
. You can spend this on wards, towards your next big item, or use it to become some sort of core going into the late game. Dota is, at it's core, a game where you try to get your team's GPM and XPM higher than the opponent's team. Midas is an item that does that. Also, Midasing Chen
creeps is hilarious. If you don't agree with this item, don't rage about it in the comments. That has happened on other guides. Instead, check out this link: http://www.reddit.com/r/DotA2/comments/1ulx2p/questions_about_midas_on_support_heroes/
- Again, you can't get Doom
ed, or you'll probably lose the teamfight. Other spells are useful to block too, like Primal Roar
, Fiend's Grip
, or even Amplify Damage.
- If they have any sort of high physical damage or any armor reduction, even if it is just a Viscous Nasal Goo
, you're going to need at least a casual Plate Mail. His armor is actually that bad. Upgrading into Shiva's is a logical progression, as the active is very good against carries, and the INT is manapool and Arcane Bolt
damage, which is awesome too.
- This is, again, a ganking item that is useful if you want to continue your reign of terror after you have a Rod of Atos
. Sneak up and blow up. It is important to mention, however, that usually by the time that you get a Shadow Blade
and a Rod of Atos
on a support Skywrath it's usually the 45 min mark and their team is moving as five. So, usually only get this if you're snowballing hard enough.
Boots of Travel
- If everyone else has one, why be left out?
-If you keep getting blown up by gankers with a lot of magic damage, like a Lina
, a Puck
or a Queen of Pain
, you might want a glimmer. Lina and Queen of Pain have a pure damage component too, but that isn't really the point. Anyway, the mana cost isn't really that big a problem with Skywrath. You might want to get another HP and/or INT Item with this, like that Rod of Atos
, because glimmer makes all that HP more efficient and the INT serves to mitigate the high mana cost.
- As a support who wants HP and Armor but doesn't have to worry about not having the mana, what Item could be more perfect then a Mekanism? If you want the mek, you don't need Tranquil Boots
because it does the same regen and armor type of thing. That leaves you free to go Arcane Boots
, and into the obvious extension. I don't suggest upgrading to Guardian Greaves
until you have another item though, one of the sticks. The recipe costs a lot, and although it gets rid of the mana cost for the Mekanism, you'll need some sort of of HP or Utility (one of the sticks) before you blow that much on a recipe that doesn't give any stats.
- It gives HP, it gives INT, and the necro warriors are really good. Buy against heroes that dislike summoned units like Juggernaut
and Shadow Demon
, and buy it against those who are countered by truesight and for when you need to push.
Gem of True Sight
- Usually, buying gems falls to ranged supports. As a hero who'll be getting around the map a lot, and a ranged support, a gem is really useful for the map control you can get from it. About two minutes before you take roshan, you can send in the skywrath to deward everything and make sure they don't have vision. That way, not only might hey be unaware that you are taking roshe, but if they chose to contest it they will be at a vision disadvantage.