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136 Votes

Shake Your Money Maker

December 23, 2013 by GGplay
Comments: 85    |    Views: 979916    |   

Build 1
Build 2
Build 3

The Overview

DotA2 Hero: Pudge

Hero Skills

Meat Hook

2 3 5 7


1 4 8 9

Flesh Heap

10 12 13 14


6 11 16


15 17 18

Introduction: Why Pick Pudge?

Pudge is a hero which is very dependent on the skill-level of the player. You could say this about every hero, but pudge needs a player who can predict enemy movement very well and land skillshotts with a very small "AoE"-Hitbox at long range. On the other hand Pudge is a rewarding hero if you play him well. If you like to know more, read on....

If you like it vote.

Pros / Cons

1. Hook!
2. Good CC/Disables
3. You can play him solo mid
4. Initiator and life saver for your Team
5. best strength gain scaling

1. His main skill is a skill shot
2. Slow
3. Manaproblems
4. His Ult is countered by CC
5. You can hit 10 of the most rediculous hooks of all time in a row and noone cares but if you miss one fu**ing hook after it you will be flamed for beeing the worst player in the world -> prepare for this ;D


Meat Hook

- Did you ever play with an ally who overextended all the time and you just knew he is goin to feed the enemy carry if he stands in this position? Then Hook is your ability. You can save allys who dont want to listen to you by hooking them away from the Enemy team. ;)
- In addition you can initiate and create 4v5 fights for your team or gank like crazy with this skill.
- Its a damagenuke.
- The hook has actually a realy small AoE(Area of Effekt) at its end. So you can play around with this AoE. But you have to remeber that it is very small and you have to get used to it especially when you try to hook champs near chreeps. The hook might be in perfekt position but the Hitbox of the hook is so big that it hits on a creep right befor it gets to a enemy hero just because the hitbox of the hook was a litle bit bigger then you thought.


- Good slow.
- You can use it to lasthit.
- Its part of the Hook -> Rot -> Dismember combo.
- You can deny yourself when you would die anyway so the enemy team wont get any gold.

Flesh Heap

- You can get this at level 10 and you will already get all the stacks you collected by kills and assists in the earlygame so that Flesh Heap will actually make a difference in your survivability. You can lvl it early on but it could be a waste if you dont have enough stacks that i makes a difference in your survivability.
- After the buff you just snowball 10 times faster.


- Good Disable.
- Hold enemys in place so your team can finish them off.
- Part of the Hook -> Rot -> Dismember combo.
- If you get chased by an enemy and you know you are goin to die you can use Dismember to extend you Rot time on yourself so you can assure your deny. This will only work when 1 enemy is chasing you.

How to....

Block the creeps at the start:
By standing in front of your creeps when they initially come out you can slow them and delay their movement. The easiest place to start creep blocking is in front of your first tower. Stand in front of the creeps and walk forward. You can slow them by either pressing "H" and moving forward or by weaving back and forth in front of the creeps so they can't get by.
Your creeps will arrive later and the enemy creeps will be near to your turret.

How to hook:
Click on the ground when you want to hook:
Don't click on the hero, especially when trying to hit a moving target. This will result in a miss often. It happend to me most of the time i did this mistake. Click on the ground near the hero, or if they are moving click on the ground in front of them.

Targets who immobile themself:
Units can't attack and move at the same time. Use this to your advantage. Cast hook at the beginning of the attack animation of your enemy, that will ensure that they can't move while the hook is flying. You can predict their attackanimation by looking for their lasthit attempts.

Targets who are moving:
Moving targets are harder to hit. Keep the following things in mind:
Look at a hero's general movement speed and plan your hook acordingly. Check if the hero has a movement speed altering spell on him.
Keep your allies' spell cooldowns in mind, you don't want to miss your hook just because an allied hero slowed them or stunned them. In the case that you are 100% sure that the hero will be slowed and/or disabled, wait for your ally to cast his spell.
Always calculate the position where the Hero is going to be, and cast your hook there, never directly at the hero. If your allys disable the target you have a very easy time to land your hooks.

There is a possibility that you will meet good players who want to bait your hock so they can escape by good movement or an ability.They maybe run a straight line and wait for you to cast the hook, and then easily dodge it. You can do 2 things.
1. Try to trick him back. Predict where he will move to dodge your hook and then "miss" your hook on purpouse at the position where he wants to dodge.
2. The other possibility is when any form of terrain is involved. He may have to follow a certain path so you can predict where he will move.

Fog/Blind hooks:

Some heroes will try to run into the Fog to get away from your hooks. You can effectively bring them back by predicting their movement. Much like hooking a moving target, try to compensate for what you can't see. Calculate their movement speed, the terrain they're walking on and hook where you think the hero will be.
You can also use blindhooks to create good advantages for your team. If you have seen an enemy walking to a secret shop you can hook in blind to pull him right into your teammates. Or you can hook towers where you dont have direct vision but you have seen 1-3 Heros defending it right befor the vision was lost. You may miss but if you hit someone you have created an easy kill for your team.

From lvl 1-3
Chose if you want to go Mid or on a duo lane.
On a Duolane you can try to go for first blood with Stun + Rot but dont do it if you dont feel save getting it. Its maybe just a waste of time.
Farm and level up till you are lvl 3. Stay at your lane and let the enemys push near your turret. Stay in a good hook position to hock them into the tower so your partner can stun(if he has a stun) them under towerrange. Turn your Rot on after hooking so he gets slowed too. This will result in an easy kill.

LvL 5
You can effectifly start roaming at lvl 5. With Lvl 3 Hook you have enough range to be a threat.

Map with good hookingspots:

LvL 6/7
Now you have your Dimember which makes kills really easy. With lvl 7 you have your max range hook and can be a huge threat.

Hook+Rot+Dismember Combo

When you start your Combo with Hook try to start your Rot as fast as possible. If you dont hook a enemy with a Blink or escape ability try to run a little bit with your Rot on with the enemy so you can savely start the Dismember within the Rot Range. The Dismeber range is a little bit larger then the closecombat range so it can happen that the enemy is not in the Rot circle.

Using Shift:
By pressing shift you can create chains of skills. If you hold shift down use hook and press dismember on your target pudge will instantly start the dismember when you hooked the target in range.

Playing Pudge Mid:

First things first. Pudge is a viable Mid Hero, BUT you wont get much farm if your opponent is a half decent player and picked another strong mid hero.
You play Pudge in Mid lane for getting fast LvLs to lvl up your Meat Hook+ Rot+ Dismember combo. Actually this combo is the only reason you are viable in Mid. With this combo you can brust down most Mid Champs especially when you manage to hook them in tower range, so while they are Dismember and cant get away, the tower will also deal dmg to them.

Befor you decid to go mid, tell your team that someone has to buy a Animal Courier (chicken) for you. Otherwise i would never go mid, because you will "lose" your lane in most cases just by having no Animal Courier (chicken) to bring items to your tower. So you have to spend to much time goin back to your base... and when i have to buy the chicken i dont go mid cause i need the money to win my lane.

Start with the normal starting build and then build a fast Bottle. Now you may ask why i dont buy a Bottle just form the start. The thing is without any stat items lasthiting will be realy hard against someone with stat items. If he is good enought he might deny you every creep even if you time your last-hit perfectly just because he will do more dmg to a creep and can last hit it befor you can. With the items you boost your stats. You will take some her*** but you have the Tango and a Healing Salve to compensate this, till you have your bottle.

Why Bottle so fast? Because midlane ist all about the runes. Most people underate runes heavy... maybe i overrate them, but thats better then not using their power. Its not only the power of the runes that makes them strong. Your Bottle will be refilled when you had a Bottle which was empty and saved a rune in the Bottle. This will be really strong for your lane sustain and cripple your enemy hero because he might need to buy pots or go back to base.
A rune will spwan every 2 minutes in one of the 2 random spots. Tell your team to ward Observer Ward one spot so you always know where the rune spwans or tell them that one hero has to check one spwanpoint so you know if its there or at the other spwanpoint.
If your enemy isnt dumb he will also try to get the runes, so how do you manage to get it and your enemy doesnt steal it. If your lane isnt pushed already start pushing your lane at the 3.45 minute mark (if the rune spwans on 4.00) so your creeps will be at the enemy tower when the rune spawns. Your opponent has to defend the tower and last hit the creeps while you have time to go to the rune and put it in the Bottle. You can use your Rot to push the lane.

Another important point in mid is creep blocking and i will describe why:

You may lose your lane just by not blocking the creeps at the start if you play against a good opponent. I will describe this futher with images:You want to block your creeps so that your creeps are on your side of the river. This is important because the enemy hero will have a misschance with his attacks on the highground and cant see ontop of the hill. So you can stay in a save position. The problem is if you dont block your creeps and you find yourself in this position but on the enemy side it can lose you the game cause you can be her***ed really hard and wont get any farm. He may be able to denie you the xp too.
There are 2 ways you can creepblock:
1. Block all your creeps so that all creeps are on the top of your Hill
2. Block only the melee creeps and let the rangedcreep run first. With this creepblock you will automatically push the lane to your tower. This is the safest block because if your enemy hero blocks good too the lane will meet in the middle of the river`, but because the rangedcreep ist targeted first your lane will automatically be pushed to your tower even when the enemy hero blocked well.

The Itembuild doesnt change from the top build except the starting items. When you have your lvl 4 Meat Hook you can start to gank the sidelanes hard.

Enemys you face in Midlane:

At first some general stuff. When you play against a strong midhero and you are losing your lane, dont try to force it. When you can not win midlane make sure that the enemysidelanes are losing. That means that you gank them hard. You should gank them anyway but its especially important for you if you are losing mid. You farm up by ganking the sidelanes and getting kills.
Queen of Pain (QoP)
Her name says it already. She can be a pain in the a**. If she has a good reactiontime she will blink out befor you dismember her. That means that you will only kill her if she fails hard. At lvl 6 she has a strong burst and can kill you if you already lost some health form harass, which she can do fairly easy. QoP can also gank very well with the blink ability and it is hard to control the runes against her, because normaly she should get every rune with her blink.

Well what should i say except really really annoying. He slows you so much that you can barely move, has an escape with Firefly can push you back and when he hits lvl 6 he will mostlikly kill you with Flaming Lasso if you are out of position. And in addition he is really tanky in the early stages of the game. Your hook combo can still kill him if you chain it fast enough so he cant use Firefly.

Outworld Devourer
Outworld Devourer
This guy can be very annoying. Not only is his damage with Arcane Orb pure damage which ignores your magicresistance but even worse for you is the Astral Imprisonment. If you have 2-3 Stacks of this on you then you are totaly manascrewed and wont be able to cast your combo which makes pudge fairly useless. Even if you hook him he can just Prison you and run away. You should try to get kills on the sidelane and dont stick to much on midlane. Rush a Black King Bar. This item makes Outworld Destroyer mostly useless because you ignore his Arcane Orb and imprisonment.
Puck isnt that hard. Bait his Phase Shift with faked hooks. Do this by stopping the hook animation by pressing the "Hold" Key. You want to scare the Puck so he use Phase Shift to doge the fake hook. When he comes out of the Phase Shift you can hook him without canceling it again. His silence can counter your Combo. Its all about who clicks faster.

He is a really tough opponent with his manaburn and silence. If you are not able to sustain yourself in the lane against him, you should consider to switch lanes with someone who can.

He is not really a counter but you should ALWAYS use your Rot instantly after your hook, because Rubick can steal your hook. And in addition his spells dont have a casting time, which makes his hook way better then yours.

Teamfights / Lategame

You are playing a major roll in teamfights.

1. You can initiate.
Again try to initiate a fight with your hook. Its a good way to position yourself inside trees again so the enemy you have hooked cant get away that easy. Dont use your Dismember if you dont have to assure the kill. You will maybe need Dismember for the 4v5 fight you have created.
THINK ABOUT WHAT YOU WANT TO HOOK! Dont just hook anything. If you hook the enemy Tidehunter into the middle of your team and he uses his Ultimate, you have created the perfekt engage for your enemy team and pretty much GG for your team. Again hook soft targets especially their main Carry. If you can hook the enemy main carry you can clap your hand on your shoulder. Dont try to hook people with good blink escapes (if the main carry has a good escape try to hook him anyway even if he gets away his escape will be down later in the fight). There is a chance that even if you land a perfect hook, they will get away. So its a saver way to hook soft targets without good escape.

2. Your team gets caught in the open and the enemys try to ROFL-stomp you:
You have to 2 choises. First look at your team. Can your main carry handle the engage and can get to a save position where he can DPS very well? Your main carry is number 1 priority. If you have to die to get an ace at the enemy team GO FOR IT! If your main carry can handle the situation you can try to go for the enemy main carry. Stick to him like glue or try to kill him so he cant DPS your whole team down. Maybe the enemy team starts to focus you cause you are on their main carry and that is exsactly what you want to force. Soak the dmg till the rest of you team has killed everything.
okey... if your main carry cant handle the situation and gets jumped by the enemy heros try to do everything to peal of the enemys from your main carry. 1. you can hook your main carry away form them 2. you can hook the enemys away form you carry. 3. Dismember the jumpers. 4. Turn rot on to slow them down so your carry can get away. 5. Help to dps the jumpers down to save your carry....


There are some different Starting builds you can play on pudge depending on the Lane an your porpose in the game. At the beginning i have stated only 1 startingbuild but i willt state some more in this chapter.

Its a all around start which you can play on sidelane very well especially when you dont know who your enemy/s on the lane will be. You have enought regen and a good stat-gain.

This starting Build is for a fast Urn. Some laneenemys will definetly be first blood to you if you do it right. (looking at champs with no escape and low starting life) When you get a fast Urn up you can start building up stacks fast and snowball even harder in the early game.

*Note: If you go on sideline and noone bought a courier. Buy one...

What are the problems of Pudge? It is his mana sustain. So you have to fix this with items. It is also very important to have good hp sustain because you want to roam 24/7 and dont have to run to the base all the time.
You can go with the early1 build for enought sustain but i would recommend the early2 build.

With this build you have everything you need. Massiv sustain and boots to counter the slow movment speed of pudge. You can roam all day and get kills for your team by ganking cause you dont have to go back to your base once.
Urn of Shadows:
This item is really cool. It gives you mana reg, a heal and a dmg ability. Did you ever see enemys gettin away with 100 live? Not with the Urn. This item has everything you need and you even can heal your allys. The stacks are easy to get cause you are roaming around and getting kills and assists all day.

I think only your early core is very consistent when it comes to the itembuild.

vs vs vs
Chosing your boots:

Boots of Travel
If you are playing Pudge mid and have a strong early game, or get good farm on a sidelane, you can get Boots of Travel. This is mostly true for Pub games because the mobilityincrease with boots of travel is very strong in games where teamcommunication is missing. In addition, even if Boots of Travel are more expensiv then Power Treads your farm will increase by a tone with Boots of Travel because you can tele around the map if one of your lanes gets pushed really hard by creeps or you can tele to push down enemytowers and get easy farm by doing this. BUT i think you will learn that in most games you dont have the time or the money to build these boots. They are very good but in my opinion way to expensive.

Power Treads
If you have a bad early game and often find yourself in situation where you die in "teamfights" get Power Treads. They will add the needed survivability to farm more gold. If you die often and try to get the money for Boots of Travel you will maybe need a very long time or will never be able to get the 2k gold together to spend them on boots which only increase your mobility.
PTs are the boots you will get in most of your games, because the 8 str. do matter when it comes to tankyness in the early game. And you have to be tanky to use your Rot efficiently.
And what most people dont seem to get is that PTs are the small version of Arcane Boots, because befor you use your hook you switch with your PTs on Int. and gain 104 more max. mana. Then you use your hook and switch back to Str. so you get your max HP back and didnt spend 140 for lvl 4 hook because of your int-gain. So PTs give you the base movement speed of Phase Boots + hp + dmg + attackspeed + the small version of arcane boots.

Arcane Boots
Well i think these are the chillout boots because you will always have mana to use your skills and dont have to switch around PTs to controll your mana pool. I would recommend them if you are not familiar with hitting your hooks because with the mana you gain from Arcane Boots you can hook people 24hrs a day so its not important if you miss 70% ;D Sometimes i get them myself just because the are so easy to use and make your game smooth and if your team needs them. And you can change your build to getting a fast Urn into the Arcane boots. And after this what you want. You dont have to get the Bottle or Magic Wand if you go for this build.

Phase Boots
If you know how to position well and use your hook rot dismember combo right you dont need to chase 24hrs around people or creeps. If you think that you really need the speedboost then buy them. My opinion is that you dont need them to be effective.

Smoke of Deceit is an excellent investment for getting easy kills in the Midgame. When your enemyteam uses wards to deny your ganks you can counter this by using smoke-ganks. In addition your hook has enough reach that you dont have to get out of the invis. to hook someone. They wont see you till you cast your hook, even if they have wards.

This things are your little friends. Place them everywhere you want to get vision so you can hook people.

Counterward the enemy wards so they cant see you when you gank lanes. Its the same funktion as a Smoke of Deceit

If you have enemyheros which can go invis it can be very helpfull to get a gem. Most invis heros rely on their invisibility and are squishy without it. Go an farm their lifes. In addition you can deward the enemy wards. But dont die recklessly and lose the gem!

I cant stress this enough. Always and i mean ALWAYS have tps when you have the money for it. It is the cheapest item to increase your mobility. You can countergank with it when your teammates are ambushed unter their tower or you can tp back on a lane to gank after another gank where you had to go back to base. So remember to buy TPs


Mobility Items

Good mobility items are Blink Dagger and Force Staff. If you dont go for the "save" build i would build one or both of these.

Force Staff
You can pull of some crazy plays with this item. With the active + hook you can create a really big iniate circle around you and when you ever see a enemy hero out of position and away from his team he is nearly dead cause he wont get away when you use this active and land your hook.
You can also escape with this item out of difficult situation cause it is usable even when you are hit by enemy attacks. You can go over cliffs and through woods with this item.
You can use this item on your allys too if you want to save them or give them some speed boost to initiate a fight with you. This works even when they are disabled.
In addition you can force enemys into the direction they are looking at and create another iniate with this.

Blink Dagger
This item was banned from pudge for a really long time. For initiation this item is even better then Force Staff because you can get a exact position and you can blink on someone and use Dismember. This creates really easy ganks. You have to keep in mind that Blink Dagger uses more mana then Force Staff

Other Items

Pipe of Insight/ Hood of Defiance
If your team gets blown away by magicdmg this items is the way to go. It massivly boosts the magic tankyness of your team.
Use it at the start of every Teamfight. Your team will thank you a lot for those extra hitpoints.

Black King Bar
If you play against good enemys, they will wait for you ultimate to pop in a teamfight and use CC to counter it.
The active of Black King Bar works great against those CC counters. Just use the active right befor you are going to ult, so you will get the full channeltime of your ultimate.
Also you dont take Rot damage while using Black King Bar

Shiva's Guard
With this item you really boost your Armor and boost your mana and manareg again.
In addition you get a realy good aura which will slow your enemys attacks down. This really helps in latgame when the enemy main carry tries to go crazy with his DPS.
Also the acitve is very nice because you can slow the whole enemyteam down for 4 seconds. Again you can use this to keep people away form your carry.

Ghost Scepter
If you get raped by physicat autoattackers you can build a Ghost Scepter to counter their damage and the item gives you some good all around stats. Actually playing Pudge with Ghost Scepter + Black King Bar is really funny.

Assault Cuirass
With the new Flesh Heap buff you can farm so much strength that it is worth a try to go into some carry item. You will hit hard with your attacks and this items also make you more tanky.

Aghanim's Scepter
By the time you have your Aghs you probably are around 3500 HP without any components of a HoT. The strengthgain of the buffed Flesh Heap just creates a really good synergy with Aghs effect. If you need extra damage then Aghs is a good investment. And you really dont need more tankitems because you snowball so hard with this flesh heap buff.

Heart of Tarrasque (HoT)
Well if you build this item after the Aghs, your HP will skyrocket. Most of the time this is not needed.

I like to go fast

This itembuild is focused on maximising your movementspeed and getting even faster with force staff.

This has 2 basic uses. You can gank the lanes faster and initiat form father away with the force staff. It is important to note, that you are also able to outrun most enemys and that you are able to get out off many difficult situations just because you have such a high movement speed

The Standard Safe Build

This Build is the safest build. Basicly you focus every item on sustain and beeing tanky for teamfights where you run around an rot the enemyteam. To do this you have to absorb damage and should be able to heal yourself. This build is focused on that.


My videos:

some random pudge hooks:
second video. just for fun, some hooks:
Pro Videos:

(Oldschool Video)Dendi playing Pudge at the ESWC 2011 Finals: Short video of his hooks
NaVi vs Dignitas at "The Defense": Dendi stomping with pudge


16.6.13 Update for patch changes

18.01.13 enemys

-10.11.2012 some updates

- 24.3.2012
-> added some more info on Starting items

- February 11, 2012
- edited the itembuild a little bit

- January 6, 2012
- added chapter for midlane

-December 18, 2011
-> added Chapter for the Hook Rot Dismember

- December 16, 2011
-> over-worked the item section
-> added a chapter for replays

- December 14, 2011

-> added some gameplay tipps
-> added a chapter for items after the core build.

End of the Story

Have some fun with the hooks: English is not my native language so dont judge me to hard on it.


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