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Pudge: The Hooker

December 11, 2012 by Laminatedweasel
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The Always Build

DotA2 Hero: Pudge


Purchase Order

Starting

Early, IN THIS ORDER

Mid-Game

Late Game

Luxury



Hero Skills

Meat Hook

1 3 5 7

Rot

2 4 8 10

Flesh Heap

9 12 13 14

Dismember

6 11 16

Talents

15 17 18


Pudge: The Hooker

Laminatedweasel
December 11, 2012


Foreword

Personally, I play Pudge quite a lot and would consider him my primary hero. Pudge is a fascinating combination of timing, pattern recognition, knowing your abilities and their ranges by eye, and feeling like a raid boss late game.

To be honest, I tend to like to play hero's whose sole purpose is to annoy the **** out of the other team (I.E. Nature's Prophet, Riki, and newly found Keeper of the Light), and Pudge is the best of the best at doing so.

Key To Pudge:

KNOW THE MAP

Beginning

Call Middle Lane!



Buy two Gauntlet of Stength, two Healing Salve, and two Clarity. This is my standard opening every game, and is a perfect balance for the way I play. This may vary depending on your playing style. Some players prefer to get an early Bottle, yet I prefer to focus primarily on last hitting and avoiding needless damage early game rather than running back and forth grabbing runes and playing aggressively.

BLOCK THE CREEPS!!


Since Pudge is a melee hero, last hits and denies aren't the easiest to obtain, especially when playing against skilled players using ranged heroes.

I've found that 9/10 times, the mid hero will underestimate the tenacity of Pudge's early game damage. You will find your opponent dancing in circles around the creeps in an attempt to gain a shield between you and a potential hook. At this point in the game, the absolute EARLIEST I would use a Meat Hook is once that ability reaches level 3. And only so when you have an opportunity to pull them into the tower and follow up with a Rot. You really only get 2-3 chances at a hook early game, MAKE THEM COUNT.

One opportunity that is commonly missed, is that enemy heroes will find themselves feeling safe on the other side of a creep wall and will allow themselves to walk all the way up to that wall, even within your Rot range most times. If the lane is pushed enough on your side of the river, run through the creep wall, throw a Meat Hook, and chase them down with Rot. Most times this is enough to kill them, even without a perfect opportunity.

Mid Game Ganking

As Pudge it is your JOB to gank. Do NOT sit in the middle and think that you're going to farm yourself into carry-mode because it won't happen. The point of Pudge is to A: Suppress the other teams heroes with ganking/harass, and B: Become a durable tank hero through hero kills adding strength with Flesh Heap. I make it a general rule not to gank prior to level 6. This is because of the weakness/range of your hook prior to its upper levels, and the lack of ability to hold heroes in place using Dismember.

Here I have added a list of excellent Meat Hook locations that I commonly use. RED refers to standard Fog Of War hooking opportunities. BLUE dots refer to awesome hooking locations only obtainable through the use of Force Staff :)


Obviously these are not the only spots that Pudge is able to throw hooks from the darkness, but these specific locations are favorites of mine, due to being able to see while not being seen.

Late Game

Very much basic late game. If your team is winning, using Meat Hook to pull heroes outside of their base's walls is a great way to lower their hero count and prevent them from engaging.

If your team is losing, stay inside your walls and Meat Hook / Dismember while in range of your own towers to keep their team from building strength.

Pudger's Tips

I use Mana Boots every game for Pudge because it allows for me to throw hooks aggressively once I get them. This may cause your team to think you're missing your hooks 50% of the time (probably because you are). But in the overall scope of things, without taking risks you aren't going to land any badass hooks. And there really is no detriment since the cooldown on Meat Hook is extremely low, and you have Mana Boots to instantly gain any and all mana used on the missed hook.

When you throw a Meat Hook, use Dismember on the target immediately after, before they even get to you. The ability will queue and initiate as soon as they are within range. This is helpful for keeping a hero in tower ranged when in mid-lane.

Use Meat Hook at point-blank when using Rot on a hero. Almost always they won't be expecting to lose an instant 360 health and think they are about to kill you so they will stay. Use this to quickly finish them once they reach this point.

That's about all I can think of, Happy Hookings!

-Laminatedweasel

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