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Sando's Guide to Elder Titan

July 25, 2014 by Sando
Comments: 22    |    Views: 53233    |   


Build 1
Build 2
Build 3

Balanced Build

DotA2 Hero: Elder Titan


Purchase Order

Starting

Core (Boots + 1-3)

If nobody else buys them

Extension Options

Luxury

Situational



Hero Skills

Echo Stomp

1 4 12 13

Astral Spirit

2 3 5 7

Natural Order

8 9 10 11

Earth Splitter

6 14 16

Talents

15

Introduction



Elder Titan is an extremely strong hero, a teamfight and utility hero with great scaling on his abilities. He can initiate without needing a Blink Dagger and can also deliver a large amount of damage with pretty minimal farm.

However, he's not an easy hero to play, with several complex abilities and skills that can be difficult to land effectively. This guide aims to give you a better understand of how he works, and how to use him well...

Strengths and Weaknesses

+ Great starting stats
+ Strong base damage and armour
+ Good movement speed
+ Very effective ability scaling
+ Multiple damage types and amplification
+ Large AOE stun
+ Strong teamfight presence
+ Good scouting ability


- Fairly poor stat gains
- Abilities can be difficult to land
- Early mana problems
- Poor agility
- No true escape
- Some micromanagement necessary
- Stun requires channelling

Things you need to know with Titan on your team

- His stun only continues if opponents are not attacked by enemy heroes, wait for Earth Splitter before waking them up.

- You do far more damage to opponents when he or his spirit are close to enemy heroes, take advantage of it.

- He's pretty mana dependent, help him out whenever possible.

- He can pickup most utility/aura items, ask him if you want something specific.

When to Pick Elder Titan

+ Enemy team has very tanky heroes
+ Enemy team has agility heavy carries
+ Team needs more damage potential and teamfight
+ Mana battery heroes available


- Enemy team have strong scaling anti-tank abilities
- Enemy team are mobile enough to avoid big clunky abilities
- Strong harassment heroes likely in your lane
- Utility/offlane #3 spot already taken

Echo Stomp



Echo Stomp is your stun, but like everything else with Elder Titan, it requires some explanation to truly get to the bottom of. First of all, it has to be channelled before casting - 1.4 seconds may not seem like much, but he makes it pretty damned obvious he's going to do it. You can be prevented from casting it by stuns or silence during this time.

Ok, but the good news is that it has a pretty big AOE, one around you - and one the same size around your Astral Spirit. Between the two zones it's quite possible to stun multiple enemies, or catch out your main target without a reliable setup. For example, against a fleeing enemy, deploy your spirit to where you think they will be when the channelling completes.

Each of your stomps inflict their own source of damage - physical from you, magical from the spirit. If your Astral Spirit is not currently deployed (or even levelled) then it will still appear and stomp with you on your location. The damage is nice, but it's not really the point of Echo Stomp though, so don't worry about overlapping with your spirit unless you have a really easy setup.

The other interesting thing to note is that your stun has a "sleep" effect - opponents will wake up if they take damage from a player based source. This can be pretty frustrating if your team don't understand this or utilise it properly. However, other damage sources work fine - for example enemies being attacked by a tower WON'T wake up, making for easy kills.

Generally, we take 2 early points in this to give us the 3 seconds we need for Earth Splitter.

Astral Spirit



Astral Spirit is the skill that really defines Elder Titan, and many of your other abilities are related to it. It's a very flexible spell, offering a whole range of options and benefits. Remember that you can cast it anywhere within a 1200 range, but can also manually control the spirit like your hero.

- It's a nuke, delivering magical damage to every enemy unit it hits (once per cast).

- It's a buff, giving you a short burst of extra damage and movement speed for every enemy it hits while active.

- It's for delivering your other abilities - Echo Stomp and Natural Order both work around your spirit too.

- It's a scouting mechanism - it can move over any terrain and gives you vision of the area.


As you can see, this is a really powerful ability, and gives you a lot of options depending on the situation. Once you have the mana to do so, don't be afraid to use it as often as possible - for farming, scouting or jungling.

Early game you can use it to grab last hits, both from the nuke damage, and then the buff damage that comes afterwards. Harass the enemy heroes whenever possible - this gives you a bigger bonus, and forces them to use their consumables. If you have time, send it off to hit neutral creeps too, contest pulls, etc.

In fights you should be using it primarily to scout the opposition, and try to land an Echo Stomp. Keep the spirit close to enemies whenever possible, so your team gets the benefits of Natural Order. Micromanage it as much as possible.

It's quite possible to be regularly pulling in an extra 100-200 damage and 20-30% move speed at level 7 with this, so make good use of it.

Natural Order



This passive ability causes a great deal of confusion - what exactly does it do?

Basically it makes all enemies more vulnerable to physical and magical damage when you or your spirit are nearby.

Physical damage
- enemies lose a % of their "base armour". This means the armour their hero starts the game with (e.g. Elder Titan starts with about 3), and any additional armour they gain from their agility. It DOESN'T reduce it for items that provide armour directly.

Lets look at an example:

A level 6 Drow Ranger with a point in Marksmanship, a Ring of Aquila and a Chainmail.

She has 0.64 starting armour, along with 40 + 26 + 19 + 9 = 94 agility, divided by 7 that gives us 13.42 armour, for 14 base armour, plus the 5 from Chainmail makes 19.

Our Astral Spirit with 2 points in Natural Order gets close to her, and she instantly loses 50% of her "base" armour of 14, taking her down to 7. The Chainmail is not effected, so takes her back up to 12.

If we got our Elder Titan personally in range of her, she's lose her 40 bonus agility from Marksmanship, taking her down to 8 base armour, then losing 50% of that to give her 4, plus the 5 from Chainmail = 9.

This makes this ability extremely dangerous against agility heroes who often rely on their base armour for physical protection. It's less effective against strength heroes who tend to buy armour items instead.

For example, a high level Morphling might well have 20 armour from it's agility alone - worth about 55% physical resistance. ALL of that armour would be stripped by Natural Order, leaving him with 0% physical protection.

Alternatively, a high level Doombringer with an Assault Cuirass would have perhaps lose 2-3 armour, but still have 15 left from the item, approx 47% physical resistance.

Magical Damage - any enemies effected take increased magic damage from any source. At level 4 Natural Order this essentially reduces their "standard" magic resistance of 25% to 0. This makes them more vulnerable to nukers on your team.

Earth Splitter



Earth Splitter is your big teamfight ultimate, capable of causing extreme damage to enemy teams. When cast, a crack forms from your position in a line 3000 units long to the target point over the course of 3 seconds. Once it arrives, the crack breaks open causing substantial damage and a slow effect to any nearby enemies.

The damage is split 50/50 between physical and magical damage, each one worth 17.5% of each target's maximum health points. This means that the spell scales extremely well against heroes with high health, and works somewhat against heroes who are magic immune (they still take the physical damage).

For example, a Centaur Warrunner with 4000 max HP would take 700 magic damage and 700 physical damage (before reductions), while a 1000 max HP Crystal Maiden would take 175 magic damage, and 175 physical damage (again, before reductions).

There are several things here to be aware of - the 3 second delivery time means that you ideally want setup from either Echo Stomp or an ally in order to guarantee a good hit. The presence of you and/or your Astral Spirit will also boost the output of both types of damage once you have Natural Order levelled.

Also, be aware that the 3 second timing only gives enemies time to react if they see it coming or are nearby. You can try for long range Earth Splitters which will explode almost as soon as they arrive from an enemy perspective.

Skill Builds

As always, there's some flexibility with the suggested builds. Generally you almost always want to max Astral Spirit first to maximise the damage and buff you get from it, although there are support builds that focus on a lot of early Natural Order.

Generally 2 early points in Echo Stomp are advised to give you initiation/counter-initiation power in conjunction with Earth Splitter, however you may forgo them for more early Natural Order if your team has strong AOE stuns.

Natural Order is a difficult one to place - it's most effective early game when heroes have relatively few items, so are completely reliant on their base armour for protection. However, your other skills benefit from early points, leaving you with a tricky balancing act.

Earth Splitter doesn't actually benefit that much from extra levels (you get a slightly better slow effect), but the upgrade doesn't cost anymore mana so we tend to pick it up anyway. Don't be afraid to delay the 2nd level if other skills will be more useful at that point.

Playstyle:

Early Game:

Usually you'll solo lane offlane against 2-3 heroes, and have to be fairly content to soak XP and grab the occasional last hit with Astral Spirit. Try to wait until at least one creep is within kill range before using it, and ideally when their creep wave is pushing towards your tower. Harass any available enemy heroes and then return the spirit to give you the bonus damage for easy last hits.

You can sometimes contest enemy pulls with Astral Spirit, but be aware of your lack of escape abilities.

You'll usually want to get a Soul Ring asap to fuel your Astral Spirit, swiftly followed by your boots. Bear in mind that you're a pretty good pusher and fighter early on, provided you have sufficient mana.



Midgame:

Get involved around the map, or even better have your team come to you for a push. With some levels and basic equipment you should be able to make plenty of use of Astral Spirit, and you can gank, push and teamfight effectively.

Sometimes you'll be setting up fights, especially if you can land a good Echo Stomp, but good enemies won't tend to clump if they know you're around. You can often be better off as a counter-initiator, in hiding and waiting for the enemy team to commit.

The extra damage you receive from Astral Spirit can make you right click very hard during the midgame, so try to put it to good use.



Late game:

You do drop off a little in the late game, but your abilities are still extremely strong - especially Natural Order and Earth Splitter. You should concentrate on your role as a team fight hero, trying to land good ultimates and supply as much aura and utility to your team as possible.

Depending on your equipment build, you may even have some right click damage - it's too unreliable to make you a proper carry, but you should get directly involved once your Earth Splitter is away.

Role

Elder Titan is almost the precise definition of a #3. He tends to be played offlane with a very occasional appearance at mid or support. He can go semi-carry, tank or utility/aura builds as required - regardless of this choice, he'll always be an initiator of some kind.

ET is very flexible when it comes to builds, as he doesn't need any additional equipment to be able to initiate effectively. His biggest issue early on tends to be mana, and this is the issue you need to address most urgently. After that, you pretty much pickup whatever it is your team needs most - be it a Mekansm, Drum of Endurance or even a Heaven's Halberd if your farm has been slow and it's what the team needs.

His mixture of damage outputs and amplification effects makes him effective on almost any team - whether they specialise in physical or magical damage, or some combination of them.

Items

Starting:



As a melee offlaner we need to focus almost entirely on survivability and sustain. We have to be near that creep wave as much as possible and be able to take some damage.

Generally I like the Clarity potions to allow more uses of Astral Spirit - you don't need to get many last hits this way to come out ahead overall, and it tends to be enough until I get a Soul Ring. You can ditch them for Iron Branches if you think you'll never get the chance to use them, or have an ally who can sustain you.



Core:



Putting a core together for an Elder Titan is interesting, and there's potentially a fair amount of farm here. However, each game varies a little depending on fast you level and which combination of items and team mates you have.

Personally, I tend to rush a Soul Ring if I'm not getting mana assistance from my team - it will quickly pay for itself with additional Astral Spirits, and provides a nice bit of general regen.

However, with some help, you could consider a Ring of Basilius instead, which offers a nice aura, but doesn't tend to meet your mana needs on it's own. An Urn of Shadows will quite often do the trick here, adding to your primary stat and offering good utility.

Next up, a Magic Wand bulks out our stats a little and offers some burst regen. You may want to go with just an early Magic Stick, especially against spammy lanes.

Finally our boots of choice are Power Treads - they're flexible for boosting your intelligence or strength as required, and give you the extra attack speed to make more use of those Astral Spirit buffs.

You could consider Arcane Boots instead, but generally levels and a Soul Ring solve your mana problems, and let you keep your treads.



Extension:



Once you have your core together, you're reasonably item independent and it's all about improving your presence and helping your team out. Generally I'll pick up either healing item if someone on my team isn't going to, and if not will strongly consider a Pipe of Insight if the other team has any kind of significant magic damage. You have the HP to make good use of the regen.

Depending on relative farm and game flow, you may end not getting too much further than this, or may end up just picking up more utility items instead of moving on to luxuries.

Drum of Endurance
is a nice all rounder, offering a strong aura and a bit of everything you need for a reasonable price.

Generally I'll only pickup the Necronomicon against teams with a lot of invisible heroes/ Shadow Blades, and/or if we need more push.

Vladmir's Offering and Heaven's Halberd are both good late game pickups, offering strong utility for your team.

You may need to consider other items such as Force Staff and Ghost Scepter as appropriate.



Luxury:



A whole host of nice items here, but you do need to consider their relative value against some of the extension options. The Boots of Travel are always handy late game for both space saved and the ability to travel to creeps - you can even BoT to your Astral Spirit!

Assault Cuirass offers a bit attack speed and armour boost, but the most important thing is the aura which reduces enemy armour, making them more vulnerable to you and your team. Only consider if your hasn't got a more suitable user.

Shiva's Guard offers a strong attack speed reduction aura on the enemy team, plus a nice active for a hero who likes to get stuck in. Good intelligence and armour boost too.

Heart of Tarrasque for the tank about town. Serious HP boost and a big heal away from the front lines.

Scythe of Vyse while not an ideal carrier, Elder Titan is flexible enough to make good use of this item's utility.

Refresher Orb for double Earth Splitter can be extremely effective (70% of enemy HP), although you will need an increased mana pool size to use it properly.

Good Allies



Your best laning buddy ever <3. An Elder Titan with almost unlimited mana is a very scary thing early game, you can probably even skip the Soul Ring completely.



The diet version of KOTL, she's still helpful, and doesn't have to lane with you directly.



These heroes all share the ability to set you up for really good Earth Splitters and Echo Stomps.

Generally you're very strong against squishy agility heroes who rely on their base armour for survival, and also do pretty well against tanky heroes too. You combine well with most heroes as you can boost both their physical and/or magical damage output.



Allies with good armour reduction abilities combine extremely well with Natural Order, rapidly taking most enemies into negative armour and making them easy to kill.

Bad Enemies



Even though you're pretty tanky, coping a lot of harassment from these guys makes your laning pretty miserable.



Very mobile heroes can be a problem for you as you try to land your big clunky powers on them, in trouble if you can hit them, but you might need some help to do so.



You have to be pretty careful of this one - you don't want to be handing over the likes of Astral Spirit or Earth Splitter to him. His passive Null Field also blunts the power of your magical attacks somewhat.

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