Not going to give ya the generics agility hero blah blah, carry blah blah. So lets start by assessing as you are in the hero selection WHEN you should choose Ember Spirit as he is an exceptionally difficult carry requiring lots of gold to become effective in team fights. So the first thing you NEED to have is a good support to lane with. If you dont have a guranteed babysitter, one thats going to allow you to last hit while keeping the enemy off you-you will not have a good game. THIS is paramount to anything else.
Good Gank Potential
Good Harass Ability
Quick fountain trips
Easy to learn
Low Mana Pool
Very Hard Carry
Needs to be babysat early game
Since his release I've used the Dota rec. items as the starting items to buy and it has worked well for me. From there I usually either go into boots or poormans shield first it really depends on whether I feel im going to need to run for my life soon or not, if enemy heroes in lane also have poor mobility go with shield first then boot. Ember spirit has a very poor mana pool early game and i ensure that my lane support picks up mana boots as early as possible to help keep up harass with the W skill.
Check rune! If your team is not you are starting off at a disadvantage, this may even assist you in a first blood, hell some games the first fights are at the rune spots, nothing beats Level 1 team fights!
Anyway, so what ability should you go for first? Its hard to say really, it kind of depends on who your support is going to be. Typically though your fist (W) is always a good first pick as it allows you a ranged harass spell. Always keep in mind how squishy you are as getting close to some heroes IS going to cost you a death in these early stages of the game. But heres some advice. If your support has a root/slow spell to prevent or inhibit enemy movement go with Flame Guard (E) first as you will be able to apply quite a bit of damage to them early on. If your support has a stun/disable go with your Searing Chains (Q) as it will keep the enemy around for quite awhile combined with your lane partners ability and in some cases it can even set their abilities up so they can effectively land them. If your lane partner has neither of those go with Fist and traditionally harass from a distance while coming in to last hit when you can.
Remember you are a HARD carry this means you are weaker than most other heroes in these early stages of the game and if you try to trade blow for blow with most heroes you WILL lose. Get your last hits, get your gold, and TRY not to die!!
Something magical happens at Level 6. Yep, his ultimate happens. Theres so many neat things you can do with his ultimate Im sure I havent figured them all out yet. Obviously first thing you NEED to realize is that it can be used as an ESCAPE. If you do not ALWAYS have one of his remnants out for this purpose you are failing at playing Ember Spirit. It takes practice and time awareness to realize when your remnant has expired as they only last 45 seconds??? (confirm) Anyway, you can effectively push a lane solo even one as far in as to the base and with a remnant far away GTFO at the first sight of trouble. Its effective...
Also a remnant can be used as wards behind the jungles to keep an eye out for ganks.
Other uses include fountain trips combined with a teleport, place a remnant in your lane, TP to base, regen up, and warp back down to your remnant. Because of the delayed affect of the fountain you'll even regen most of your mana back from the ability use.
I'd suggest you play some bot matches and learn all the nifty tricks remnants can be used for.
Its important to always keep your farm up and keep in mind with the effective use of your Flame Guard you can farm jungle camps extremely fast.
Ember Spirit even toward the late game still dies rather quickly if focused down, You should NOT be the first guy in unless you plan on getting in and getting out after you chain off your abilities. (which keep in mind can be used during a fist) Its always best to follow up with Ember after another teammates inniate going in head first with all your remnants and using everything you have in your arsenal. If you want to be safe, follow up your teams inniate with just 2 remnants and save the third for your escape out if needed or as a chase. Remember fist can hit those even in fog, so if a low health enemy you know is just out of sight you can still get a hit in with your (W) fist.
Ember is also a very effective lane pusher quite arguably one of the best, especially if boots of travel is utilized as a core item. In fact you can build him to be just this and with remnants and boots of travel you can push two lanes just as fast as Natures prophet (provided you have items to boost your mana pool for the heavy ability use) But even without the specific focus of lane pushing Ember as a carry can push a lane solo with very little risk as I mentioned early by leaving a remnant far behind in the lane as an escape. An escape that is very hard to prevent.
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