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Protect the Omnislash!

January 15, 2015 by Tuldoka
Comments: 12    |    Views: 14883    |   

General-Purpose Build

DotA2 Hero: Juggernaut

Purchase Order

Core Items

Starting Items

Decision making time!

Hero Skills

Blade Fury

1 3 5 7

Healing Ward

4 9 10 12

Blade Dance

8 13 14 15


6 11 16


2 17 18

Protect the Omnislash!

January 15, 2015


Sorry if the guide looks like a giant wall of text, but I wanted to put in a lot of tips or areas of analysis for new people. I think that Juggernaut is one of the best midgame carries in the game. He isn't a liability to any relatively balanced lineups. He doesn't need to be babied and can kill from the get go. I'm making this guide to highlight areas of improvement for new players.

I've found that a reliable way to win with this hero is to build a quick Aghanim's Scepter. Many would argue that Omnislash is highly situational, but its an incredibly powerful team fight skill and I've found that you can just itemize around the inevitable counters to Omnislash. There are numerous ways to neutralize Omni including Ghost Scepter, Eul's Scepter of Divinity, blink heroes, invisibility, illusions, multiple units, invulnerability, etc...So try reading the item build section on how to pick around your team or the enemy team.


Blade Fury

Max this skill 1st. This is your early game killing tool and escape mechanism via spell immunity (Note: you can use items such as TP's or Phase after starting Fury). That is why you generally don't use this skill to farm. You want it ready for escaping ganks, to gank, and for early team fights. Just last hit when farming.

There are 2 situations when it is okay to use for farming :
  1. If there are more creeps than usual or there is a stacked neutral camp (time efficient farming)
  2. if you want to take down a tower by running past to quickly kill the creep wave.
The second can be risky so check the minimap if anyone is missing. If you see 2 or more people coming to defend the tower, just run. If you have Omnislash and only one person is TP-ing to defend, you might be able to kill that person. If you have the mana you can plant your ward as well.

The damage of Blade Fury isn't that strong in the midgame onwards compared to your right-click damage. By then you should have some levels and items so it's main use now is to dodge spells like projectile stuns.

Tips & Notes on the Spell:
  • Do not right click on the enemy when using Blade Fury. Your character will throw a 0 damage right-click and stop moving. Instead, click where you think they will run but do not click far. Better players will try to juke you by suddenly changing direction. If you click too far ahead, it will take longer to readjust your mouse cursor and they may get away. I try to body block the hero during Fury when possible. Some people use the "move" command by pressing M on the hero to eliminate jukes. I don't like it. It will put you behind the opponent as you follow. If you ran ahead or body blocked them, you could sneak in more right clicks with a bit of orb walking.
  • If a lanemate stuns or disables an enemy with a larger than normal HP pool, throw a right click or two before the Blade Fury. Don't risk it if there's an enemy who can stun you.
  • It will kill an enemy with 300/375/450/525 HP (assuming 25% magic resistance), remember that every bar of HP is 250 hit points.
  • Do not hesitate to use it to harass enemies. The early Ring of Basilius will regen the mana. They'll burn their recovery items or make them scared to go close. This will allow your lane to take last hits and deny more freely.
  • The spell can remove certain effects such as Track
  • Your right-clicks during Blade Fury will deal damage to buildings. Sample scenario: place yourself behind the enemy Tier 3 Tower (betweeen the enemy barracks) when pushing with your creeps. When enemy creeps spawn, turn on Blade Fury to quickly kills the wave, while simultaneously attacking the tower.
  • Blade Fury does not make you immune to physical damage. Certain enemy lanes can handle your damage and fight back with right clicks. Make a judgement call of who can out DPS who. For example, if you try to Fury dive a Tidehunter with a Clinkz, Tide is tanky enough to fight back and even if you kill him, Clinkz will probably kill you right after. Axe is especially good at fighting back if your creeps are with you since his Counter Helix is physical damage.
  • If your opponent has blink or some mobility skill, dont waste your mana unless their skill is on cooldown.

Healing Ward

Max this skill 2nd. This is the strongest heal in the game if I'm not mistaken. Your team will win a prolonged teamfight if this ward stays alive. Unless they got some Wombo-Combo-Symphony-of-Skills kind of action. You and/or your teammates will never need to go home with even just 1 point and some mana management. Don't forget to use it to help teammates.

Tips on how to use it:
For those who are good at micro, you can bind it to a control group.

At the start of a fight, I generally cast the ward behind and away from the enemy and have it follow my hero. I find it best to cast it pre-emptively when you expect a clash i.e. when pushing a tower.

In team fights, have the ward follow your ranged ally to keep it farther from the enemies.

The heal is pretty strong even at level 2 and you can sometimes turn around and just man-fight enemies. One of my favorite things to do is plant the Healing Ward uphill or in the trees when I'm being chased. A number of times I've found myself running from the enemy, then before I get over a ramp, I plant the ward on top of the hill then just fight back. By planting the ward uphill, the enemy would need to run past you to gain vision of the ward, kill it, and then turn around to fight you. All while you are attacking the enemy. The ward is really fast so just control it and make it difficult to target. This can sometimes buy you the time you need for your skills to go off cool-down. Don't do this if there are too many enemies or they can outright kill you. Casting the ward takes around a second but that may be all they need.

Blade Dance

A critical strike skill, all this means is that it will never be worth it to build a Daedalus over any other damage items. Just get one point at level 8, then max this after Healing Ward.

This skill is what makes Juggernaut scary for enemies to approach. The more enemy units there are, the more spread the damage will be. If you can isolate a hero, you will probably be able to kill him with this spell alone.

  • The first slash has a mini-stun, useful against channeling spells
  • This skill cannot miss due to evasion, except for Backtrack
  • This skill can go through Chronosphere
  • Juggernaut can do normal attacks in between Omnislashes if you increase his attack speed
  • Reducing the enemy armor will increase the damage
  • Items can be used during Omnislash
  • Eul's Scepter of Divinity and Ghost Scepter will not stop Omni but will take no damage for their duration
  • Invisibility will halt Omni
  • If an enemy can cover a large distance between the slashes (think Blink, Omnislash will stop targetting him


Core items

Basilius/Aquila: Helps with last hits, tanking right-click harass, and gives mana in the lane to spam spells. Your lane mate will love you for both the mana and Healing Ward. Remember to turn off the aura since you only need it when you want to push with creeps.

Phase Boots: Helps with last hits, phasing after Blade Fury helps a lot more in securing early kills than the other choices of boots. Treads theoretically deals more damage later in the game. But it will decrease the utility of your Blade Fury early game when it is strongest. Its the skill that lets you snowball into the midgame. Boots of Travel are too expensive to rush but are better for the late game when slot efficiency becomes an issue.

Magic Wand: Provides early stats, and the charges go a long way in managing HP and MP

Aghanim's: This is your teamfight item. The 3 extra slashes is a nice increase in damage, but the main focus of this item is the cooldown reduction. We want to have all our tools up as much as possible. It's like having a "triple threat" position in basketball and Juggernaut needs to be ready to fight. It also helps in mitigating his small health and mana pool.

Picking the rest

Almost every item is viable but some gain more importance than others depending on the situation. I'll cover some items and the indicators for when to get them

Dust/Sentries/Gem/Necro3: You or your team needs to carry detection at all times to handle invisibility or your ultimate becomes useless.

Diffusal: You can purge the effect of Eul's, Ethereal Form, Guardian Angel and instantly kill Chaotic Offering Golems. It can shut down high-mana cost, low mana pool enemies. It is also useful in holding down high movespeed heroes and is a decent pickup in combination with Manta Style illusions for the Mana Burn. Note* Mana Burn is no longer a Unique Attack Modifier.

Yasha: Get this if the enemy team is too fast to kill with only Phase Boots; your team lacks the disable to keep people down. Make this before finishing Aghanim's Scepter. You can make a Sange and Yasha if you're that desperate for movespeed or the game hasn't been going well. In most cases, a Manta Style is the better since it allows you to push, disjoint spells, and provides good overall stats.

Maelstrom: Get this item if there are going to be numerous units or illusions to deal with. The Chain Lightning and Active helps to clear waves. It increases your attack speed and can proc during Omnislash. You can pick this up before Aghanim's Scpeter if the game looks like it will go late, and you're expected to farm hard. I usually build another damage item before finishing the Mjollnir. Mjollnir and Butterfly are the two strongest, though most expensive items, for increasing Omnislash damage.

Basher: Sometimes a Yasha's movespeed alone isn't enough to kill fast enemies or heroes with mobility spells. This item should be considered if you need to stop enemies like Anti-Mage, Queen of Pain or Storm Spirit. The active of Abyssal Blade is great for taking down heroes with Black King Bar.

MKB: Even if Omnislash cannot be evaded, you should still get this item against enemies with evasion like Phantom Assassin, Brewmaster, or heroes with Butterfly.

Desolator: This is particularly good with right-click teammates. The armor reduction increases your team's damage, Omnislash damage, and makes tower pushing a breeze. This is usually a better damage item than others against tanky enemies.

Butterfly: Gives evasion, damage, and attack speed for Omnislash. Its the stereotypical damage item for agility carries. It is a good choice against right click enemies. The active is also great for chasing and running.

Radiance: If the enemy lineup is reliant on Blink Daggers and no one else on your team can get it. The Radiance Aura stops enemies from being able to blink. The aura damages enemies during Omnislash. Also the aura effect can reveal the location of invisible enemies and indicate that you should activate your Dust of Appearance.

Blink Dagger: This is an alternative solution to escape from/catch people with Blink or mobility spells like Time Walk. If an enemy blinks away you can blink to them and Omnislash, or follow someone during Omni. Its a situationally good item for initiating or escaping, but it doesn't provide anything else. Personally I'd rather ask a teammate to build an Orchid Malevolence or Scythe of Vyse.

Vladmir's Offering: Get this if you have 2 or more melee teammates and no one has it yet. It helps in pushes but it should only be picked up after getting damage items like a Desolator. Disassemble your Ring of Aquila late game and use the Ring of Basilius to make the Vladmir's Offering.

Satanic: Do not buy this if you bought a Desolator because the UAMs will not stack. Juggernaut is a soft character and this item will give a huge HP boost. You can lifesteal a lot of HP with Blade Dance. It is a great last item.

BKB: This item provides the same spell immunity as Blade Fury but without being silenced and allowing you to hit freely. As much as possible we would like to avoid buying this item but get it if there aretoo many spells/disables/silences to deal with. This item should be picked up to counter Global Silence.

Linkens: Like, the Black King Bar, we would prefer to avoid this item but it can be a good counter to spells like Doom, Reaper's Scythe, and Laguna Blade.

Assault Cuirass: Pick this up if the enemy has a lot of physical damage and your team already has a Desolator. The bonus armor and reduction aura increase your team's damage and Omnislash. It is a reasonable item versus Death Prophet or Axe. The attack speed bonus is also good for the Omnislash.

Mask of Madness: Build this before Aghanim's Scepter since it speeds up your farm. It is the most cost efficient attack speed item, especially when cast before or during Omnislash. It can be used during Blade Fury for the extra movement speed. If you Blade Fury after activating Madness, it will remove the active (useful when you don't want the extra damage). Example: If after omnislash there are still many damaginf heroes, you can blade fury to remove the extra damage debuff. If there are a few survivors to chase, you can leave Mask of Madness on for the move speed buff.

Early-Mid-Late Game

Early Game

The early game is all about Blade Fury and getting gold.

Bounty Rune
At the start of the game, buy your starting items and run to the river with your teammates. You can fight for the bounty rune with your Blade Fury and possibly net a kill from it. Blade Fury lasts 4 seconds so if you can hold onto it until 2-3 seconds before the 0 mark, you can stay on the rune without worrying about spells. If someone else goes to get it they will have to tank the Blade Fury. If your teammate has a ranged stun, you can try to get a first blood which is just as good as getting a bounty rune. If all goes well and you get the rune, run straight to the side shop and finish your Ring of Basilius. Turn off the aura right away to keep your lane from pushing. Only turn it on when you want to push.

Laning Phase
Your first priority is to get last hits/denies and quickly get your Boots of Speed. Once you have them, you should try to set up your Blade Fury every time your mana is full. You would be wasting your mana regen if you didn't. There are a number of ways to do this:

  • One way is to leave a creep with low HP as bait. Try to time it so that you and your teammate use your spells as he comes in to last hit. For ranged opponents, leave your ranged creep as bait. Your harass will give you the HP advantage in lane even if you lose a deny. This forces him to be cautious about going close and you are now free to get ALL the last hits and denies. This baiting method also works with just basic right-click harass.
  • Another method is running straight at the opponents and reading their reactions. If he reacts late activate Blade Fury when you're close. If he throws a projectile stun, try to use your spell to evade it. Lastly my favorite, is when they move away as they see you approaching. When your opponent thinks you're backing off from your charge, they will usually go back in or try to harass you as you turn around. So to take advantage of this habit, turn away from the enemy, then immediately run straight back at him. Knowing when to turn requires a bit of luck and intuition, but if done correctly, allows you to close the distance as they turn in to eat your Blade Fury.

Don't be hesitatant to use Healing Ward for teammates.

When you're nearing level 5, start watching your mana because you need to have nearly full mana to do an Omnislash + Blade Fury combo at level 6. When you hit level 6, run towards the enemy. If he runs away from his creeps, use Omnislash. If he runs into his creeps, hit him with Blade Fury. If you can kill him with just one spell and a right-click or two, please do so to conserve mana. Use both spells if you think he has a chance to get away.

Mid Game

Your goal at this point is to farm and push . A mistake I used to make was I would roam excessively when no one was in my lane. I would look for Omnislash kills and it worked lot of times, but if I didn't find anyone, time was wasted gaining 0 gold and experience. Just carry a Town Portal Scroll in case your team needs you instead.

My philosophy now is that you should draw people to you instead of going to them. If there are no kill targets in your lane just farm and look at the mini-map. If you know where 3-4 enemy heroes are, you should push out your lane to damage the Tower. This should send some heroes to defend it or attempt to gank you, and if not, you get a free Tower.

If you only see 0-2 enemy heroes on the map, you should keep the creep equilibrium closer to the safety of your Tower. This makes it harder for them to gank you and easier for your supports to TP if they try. There are two ways to farm when enemies are missing. The first is to balance your denies with last hits a.k.a. static farming. The second is to push out your creeps and let them damage the Tower. When your creeps push out, you can stack/farm neutrals, or pull the easy camp and take it down quickly. This will bring the creep equilibrium back to your tower and you can repeat the process, or go back to static farming.

Pushes and why it is so Important

You should actively try to push your Tower and once you do, meet up with your team and push down other Towers with Healing Ward. Most guides will tell you that Juggernaut should not be farming creeps, he should "farm heroes". While I understand what they're trying to say, the explanation lacks the follow-through for new players. This ends up generating the KDA-tunnel-vision-NOOBS everyone hates. I've seen many games where people would disperse and return to farming after a successful gank. What is the point of killing enemies if you don't generate a push advantage? What does it matter if you have 15+ kills if you lose the game? Will you blame your team and point out your support's KDA as proof? Talk to your team. You are the carry/semi-carry so you need to act like a captain. The team, particularly the supports, will be forced to follow your lead.

Kills are important because it can generate pushes. Kills create a small time frame to push with a numbers advantage (5v3 or 5v4) or give space for the main carries to farm. Whenever you push a Tower, you are strategically taking away areas the enemy can safely farm. You should always press this advantage with Observer Wards and Sentry Wards to cut off their Gold and XP supply. Force them to turtle up or make mistakes while your team accumulates a Gold and XP advantage.

If your team wants to clash but they are playing "rat dota", use a Smoke of Deceit and get yourselves an Aegis of the Immortal with your Healing Ward. Take note if your team's or the enemy team's ultimates are up and time your siege accordingly.

Team Fights

Try to plant Healing Ward before clashes start. If the enemy initiates the fight you can Blade Fury first to evade spells like Ravage. If your team got the initiation, you can Blade Fury first if there are a lot of creeps, or just lead with the Omnislash if there aren't that many. With Aghanim's Scepter, Omnislash becomes a powerful team fight spell and as an added bonus, you are invulnerable for 4.4 seconds. If your team is the one falling behind, ask them to avoid clashes when Omnislash is on cooldown.

Juggernaut, the Split-Pusher

Juggernaut is a great split pusher. You are not an ideal target to gank when you do this because you can outright kill solo heroes and you can always Blade Fury-TP away. They need to commit at least two heroes to stop you, which on its own creates space in other lanes for your team.

So here's a quick example of how to split push in a smart manner. You are alone in lane, both your team and enemies are grouped in the midlane and ready to fight. In this situation its a 4v5 disadvantage but your lineup looks like it can handle a tower defense without your help. Tell your team you want to split push and ask them to play defensively and prolong the stand-off. You proceed to Blade Fury the creep wave and push in to damage the Tower. The enemy is now left with 2 options:
  1. Force the fight in a bad position, where they may or may not get a Tower
  2. Commit 2+ heroes to TP and stop Juggernaut from getting a free Tower and abandon the fight at mid
If they go with option 1, they may or may not be able to get a kill. Your team gets a free Tower and Juggernaut is free to TP in afterwards with Omnislash ready. If they go with option 2, Juggernaut abandons the side and TP's to his team. The team now has a small window of opportunity to push the Mid Tower with a 5v3 or 5v2 advantage since the enemy has Town Portal Scrolls on cool down.

Late Game

There isn't much to say at this point. The Late-game is just a follow-through of the impact of the midgame. Slot efficiency now becomes an issue. It might be time to switch your Phase for Boots of Travel or save up money for Buy Back. Your right-click damage should be significant so make sure you "orb walk" to maximize your damage output.

Special Mentions

Favorite Teammate: Arcane Aura together with Ring of Basilius lets you spam Blade Fury and Healing Ward. She doesn't even need to be with you, but when she does, she has Crystal Nova to slow or Frost Bite if the enemy has blink.

Favorite Enemy: ^_^ sometimes I just let him Meat Hook me, or even run into it with my Blade Fury turned on. When I reach him, I follow up with Omnislash for a free kill. You may also purchase a Blink Dagger if you want to catch him when he misses a hook. Pudges tend to buy Blink Dagger so this can neutralize that advantage.

Difficult Enemies:

This guy makes you useless in team fights. Almost all of your damage is physical and Guardian Angel counters just that. Diffusal Blade can help against this in ganks but only when there are 1 or 2 targets. Try to play a split pushing kind of game with an early Boots of Travel. You won't contribute much in the clash if this guy isn't silenced or removed before his ultimate.

: A farmed Slark is difficult to handle. Shadow Dance completely neutralizes Omnislash and there is no way around it. At least you can unleash yourself from Pounce using Blade Fury to disengage and re-engage after his ultimate is done. Focus on killing everyone else and handle him last in team fights.

A good Meepo will destroy you unless you get a massive farm advantage ( Mjollnir + Butterfly). You can use Blade Fury to evade Poof but you are unable to do spells or right-clicks. After that, the Meepos will just right-click you down if you get caught.

Shukuchi gives him 522ms, grants invisibility, and he can Time Lapse to escape Omnislash. You or your team need multiple forms of disables if he builds an early Linkens.

Well that's it. There are a lot of other viable ways to play him like roaming with an Orb of Venom, Bottle Mid, Soul Ring, etc...He is a mediocre offlaner with Blade Fury to escape and Healing Ward to sustain. But this is how I think he should be played. I'll reply to comments or questions eventually, thanks for reading ^_^

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