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8 Votes

Storm Spirit - Where's the Party? - Updated for 6.84c

May 31, 2015 by Iced Tacos
Comments: 5    |    Views: 61396    |   

Build 1
Build 2

Standard Storm Spirit Build

DotA2 Hero: Storm Spirit

Hero Skills

Galvanized (Innate)

Static Remnant

1 12 13 14

Electric Vortex

3 4 5 7


2 8 9 10

Ball Lightning

6 11 16


15 17 18

Storm Spirit - Where's the Party? - Updated for 6.84c

Iced Tacos
May 31, 2015


From the Dota 2 Wiki:

Raijin Thunderkeg, the Storm Spirit, is a ranged Intelligence hero who wields the elemental power of lightning. He has high mobility, strong ganking and carrying potential, and very good synergy between his hero abilities. Static Remnant creates an immobile clone of himself that, upon contact with an enemy, shocks all enemies in a small area for damage. It has a very low cooldown, making it a good farming skill. Electric Vortex binds an enemy to himself, drawing it in slowly; at higher levels of the skill, it will always be able to pull the target into a Static Remnant. Overload further supplements this combo by harnessing the excess charge whenever Raijin casts a spell, adding it in the form of magical damage to his next attack and zapping enemies in a radius around the target. Finally, Storm Spirit's ultimate and signature skill is Ball Lightning, in which he transforms into pure energy, sacrificing his own mana to dash quickly around the map in an invulnerable state, inflicting minor damage to foes he impacts as well as giving him an Overload charge. It can be used to initiate and escape long distances with ease.Because his ultimate disjoints enemy projectiles and has no cooldown, he can prove to be one of the most slippery foes in the game, provided that he has enough mana regeneration to sustain it and/or the enemy team does not have strong disables such as stuns and silences. However, without proper mana management, he will run out of juice very quickly and become a sitting duck. While extremely vulnerable early game before he acquires his ultimate, once he does so, if he gets a few quick kills and some mana-sustaining items, he will become an unstoppable force of nature.

Storm Spirit is literally a force of nature--the wild power of wind and weather, bottled in human form. And a boisterous, jovial, irrepressible form it is! As jolly as a favorite uncle, he injects every scene with crackling energy. But it was not always thus, and there was tragedy in his creation. Generations ago, in the plains beyond the Wailing Mountains, a good people lay starving in drought and famine. A simple elementalist, Thunderkeg by name, used a forbidden spell to summon the spirit of the storm, asking for rain. Enraged at this mortals presumption, the Storm Celestial known as Raijin lay waste to the land, scouring it bare with winds and flood. Thunderkeg was no match for the Celestial--at least until he cast a suicidal spell that forged their fates into one: he captured the Celestial in the cage of his own body. Trapped together, Thunderkeg's boundless good humor fused with Raijin's crazed energy, creating the jovial Raijin Thunderkeg, a Celestial who walks the world in physical form.

Hi, my name is Iced Tacos and this is my first ever guide to my favorite Dota hero, Storm Spirit! Storm is a very strong mid hero and one of the most powerful gankers in the game, able to initiate from anywhere and solo kill heroes as early as level 6 or 7. As the game progresses, Storm becomes even more powerful, able to abuse his ultimate Ball Lightning with his insanes mana regen, flash farm like a complete monster, and fight any hero except the hardest of carries. Storm's biggest weakness is disables, especially long duration silences. However, if you can get a good start with Storm Spirit, he has one of the highest snowball potentials in the entire game.

Pros and Cons


  • High Base Armor
  • The game's best mobility spell in Ball Lightning.
  • 2.5 second disable in Electric Vortex.
  • Strong presence at all stages of the game.
  • Able to dodge spells using Ball Lightning.
  • Pretty much ignores slows late game.
  • Very high skill ceiling
  • Awesome voice acting
  • Super Fun to Play!

  • Mediocre strength gain makes him very squishy
  • Easy to gank before he gets his ultimate
  • Helpless against chain stuns/silences
  • Eats up mana like Michael Phelps on steroids
  • Needs Gold and Experience
  • Very high skill ceiling


Static Remnant:

Ability: No Target
Affects: Enemies
Damage: Magical

Creates an explosively charged image of Storm Spirit that lasts 2 seconds and will detonate and deal damage if an enemy unit comes near it.

Trigger Radius: 235
Damage: 140/180/220/260
Cooldown 3.5
Mana 70/80/90/100

Raijin Thunderkeg's duality allowed him to admire himself in shocking fashion.

  • Static Remnants take 1 second to materialize after this spell is cast.
  • Remnants have 800/800 flying vision and can see over cliffs and trees.
  • The explosion actually hits units in a 260 radius, but will only be triggered by units within a 235 radius.

  • Remnants serve a dual purpose: A low cooldown nuke and an easy way to proc you Overload passive.
  • Don't be afraid to leave one of these behind you as you move across the map, the vision provided can save your life or net a kill.

Electric Vortex:

Ability: Target Unit
Affects: Enemies

A vortex that pulls an enemy unit to Storm Spirit's location, it also slows the Storm Spirit by 50% for 3 seconds.

Range: 300
Pull Duration: 1/1.5/2/2.5
Pull Distance: 100/150/200/250

Cooldown 21/20/19/18
Mana 100/110/120/130

Raijin's thunderous, boisterous energy often draws others into an electrifying situation.

  • Level 3 Electric Vortex always pulls the target close enough to trigger a Static Remnant left at the cast location, unless the target is moved by something like Force Staff.

  • The range on this disable is very small, so use Ball Lightning to close the gap.
  • You are significantly slowed when using this skill, so make sure you have enough mana to zip away if the going gets rough.


Ability: Passive
Affects: Enemies
Damage: Magical

Casting a spell creates an electrical charge, which is released in a burst on his next attack, dealing damage and slowing nearby enemies.

Radius: 275
Slow Duration: 0.6
Damage: 30/50/70/90
Movement Speed Slow: 80%
Attack Speed Slow: 50

Pow! Zip! Zap!

  • Using items doesn't trigger Overload.

  • This skill adds some serious damage to your ganks, so make sure you attack every time you cast a spell to maximize damage.
  • The bonus damage is dealt in an AoE, use this to help last hit or harrass.

Ball Lightning:

Ability: Target Point
Affects: Enemies
Damage: Magical

Storm Spirit becomes volatile electricity, charging across the battlefield until he depletes his mana or reaches his target. The mana activation cost is 15+7% of his total mana pool, and the cost per 100 units traveled is 10+1% of his total mana pool. Damage is expressed in damage per 100 units traveled.

Range: Global
Radius: 125/200/275
Damage Per 100 Units Traveled: 8/12/16
Mana Cost Per 100 Units Traveled: 10 + 1% of Total Mana
Travel Speed: 1250/1875/2500
Mana 15 + 7% of Total Mana

The Storm is coming in.

  • This ability will destroy trees.
  • If Storm Spirit runs out of mana while traveling he will stop immediately.
  • Abilities and items can be used while traveling.
  • While using Ball Lightning, Storm Spirit is invulnerable.
  • Gains flying vision during Ball Lightning.

  • Ball Lightning is the most versatile ability in the game, and can be used for initiation, escaping, chasing, damage, etc.
  • Always make sure you do not use all your mana on one big zip across the map, as you are almost useless without mana. If in doubt, don't do it.
  • Balling a very short distance is still legit, as it provides cheap Overload procs on 0 CD.
  • Ball Lightning is not instant, so aim a little bit ahead of your target, so they are much less likely to get away.
  • In the early game, always save some mana for emergencies in case you need to Ball Lightning away.

Skill Build

Storm can be built many differnt ways, but about 95% of players build him very similarly. Static Remnant is always taken at level 1 for last hitting, and Overload at level 2. Electric Vortex is taken at 3,4 and 5, with Ball Lightning at 6. However, some people choose to leave Electric Vortex at 3 and max Overload, while others get the final point before getting the other 3 Overload points. Personally, I like to get all 4 levels in Electric Vortex by 7, as that extra disable time serves a dual purpose. First, it provides more time for you and your allies to deal damage to the enemy. Also, it minimizes the time that the target is disabled and you are slowed. At early levels, you do not have enough mana to spam Ball Lightning to chase, so getting the extra level of Electric Vortex ensures the kill. However, if your team has enough disables, the extra level of Overload does increase your damage output by a good amount. After Overload and Electric Vortex, Static Remnant is maxed last, while you grab your ultimate whenever possible, at levels 6, 11 and 16.

Item Build

Starting Items:

Assuming you did not random, there are 2 starting items builds. If you are afraid of your lane matchup mid and may take harrass, then grab 2 Iron Branches, a Mantle of Intelligence, a set of Tangoes, and a Healing Salve. If your lane matchup is even or in your favor, grab a Null Talisman and ask for a Tango from a teammate. This will allow you to grap a quick Bottle.

If you randomed, get a Bottle and Mantle of Intelligence, or a Bottle and 2-3 Iron Branches, whichever you choose.

Early Game:
No matter what, the first item you want on Storm Spirit is a Bottle. It will allow you to dominate mid, dropping remnants, ignoring harrass and grabbing runes for ganks. After Bottle, finish up your Null Talisman, or if you already have one, grab a pair of Boots of Speed and a Magic Wand. If you are going for the Bloodstone rush, grab a Soul Ring as soon as you can after Bottle.

Boots on Storm:
There are 3 legitamate boot pickups on Storm, but each has their own item build, so make sure you know which build you are going with before you buy boots.

Power Treads:
This is the safest and all around best boot choice for Storm. He loves both the attack speed and stats from treads, making it an obvious choice. Pick these up if you are going for your cookie cutter build, Orchid Malevolence first.

Arcane Boots:
While Arcane Boots are not as good on Storm as Power Treads are, if you are doing very well in lane (first blood, destroying your opponent) and your team is also doing well, these are the best boots to pickup. That is so that you can build them into a super fast Bloodstone, which can single handedly win you the game if you use it correctly. However, unless you are going for a Bloodstone rush, DO NOT buy these ever, as the extra mana doesn't really help that much, and because Power Treads are just too good.

Boots of Travel:
A build that I have tried out a few times is skipping a boots upgrade until you have Orchid Malevolence, then going for Boots of Travel. This build is SUUUUUUUUUPER greedy, and should only be considered if you are snowballing out of control, and your team has supports that can help you survive ( Treant Protector, Witch Doctor, Abaddon, etc.). However, this build can turn you into a truly global presence, matched only by Nature's Prophet and Io.

Core Items:
The strongest core item on Storm Spirit is an Orchid Malevolence. This item does it all: increase your dps, increase your mana regen, and provide a incredibly powerful ganking active. With this item and full mana, you can EASILY solo kill any non-tanky hero if you execute the combo right. The only time you should not build Orchid Malevolence as a first item is when you are rushing a Bloodstone. After Orchid Malevolence you should buy either a Black King Bar or a Linken's Sphere. The choice really depends on the game. If the enemy team has a lot of disables, definetly go for Black King Bar. If they only have a few, you can get by with a Linken's Sphere, which gives you even more mana regen. These two items provide you the protection you need from your biggest weakness: chain stuns.

Late Game: Dagon

Your third major item pickup will almost always be a Scythe of Vyse. It provides INSANE stats, plus even more of your favorite thing: mana regen. The Hex is also the best item active late game, and allows you to solo pretty much any hero in the game with your Orchid Malevolence + Scythe of Vyse + Electric Vortex combo. If you went Bloodstone first, you will want to get an Orchid Malevolence as your third item after Linken's Sphere/ Black King Bar, with Scythe of Vyse following those. Get Boots of Travel following Scythe of Vyse.

The rest of your items depends on what you think you need for the rest of the game. Shiva's Guard is usually the best choice, as it really helps you tank up, while also boosting your mana pool and damage greatly. You can even go for a Dagon 5, as you can easily zip in, Dagon, and zip back out, as well as adding even more burst to your combo. If you want to add to your DPS, even a Daedalus or Monkey King Bar is an option, or a Mjollnir if you want to go for style points.


A special shout out has to go to Heaven's Halberd, which can be game winning in the right situation. Tankiness is underrated on Storm, and if you find yourself getting focused by the enemy's right click carry (think Ursa, Sniper, Phantom Assassin, etc.), the disarm active and evasion can turn a close team fight in your favor.

WARNING: This is an incredibly situational pickup, and 99% of the time, you are better off taking another Intelligence/Caster item.


Early Game:

You should almost always go mid, the solo exp is amazing on you, plus you can easily push spam with Static Remnant as well as rune control with Ball Lightning. However, it is also possible to run Storm Spirit in the safe lane solo if another hero can also benefit from mid. For example, at TI4, EG ran Arteezy mid on Phantom Assassin with Mason safe lane on Storm Spirit. However, in pubs you should really stick to solo mid storm. While in lane, use Static Remnant to last hit and push, and Overload to harrass your opponent. Your primary goal is to reach level 6 WITHOUT DYING. Any smart enemy will try to gank Storm before he gets his ultimate, as he is easily at his most vulnerable. Make sure you have wards up around your lane so you don't get suprised by a lazy rotation. If the enemy supports go missing, stay safe on your side of the river. Its always better safe than sorry with Storm Spirit.

Mid Game:

By the time you are level 7-8, you should start thinking about the outside lanes. If you get a good rune (Haste, DD, Regen) alert your allies and shift to an outside lane. If you have a good ganking support ( Mirana, Earthshaker, Shadow Demon/ Bane), ask them to come mid, you can easily kill almost any typical mid with Electric Vortex + an extra stun. Generally, you should gank a few people while you have a large level advantage, then farm up your Orchid Malevolence. As soon as your Orchid Malevolence comes up, immediately plan to gank the enemy teams highest priority target. If you get Orchid Malevolence at a good time, nobody will be able to stop you and an ally from ganking any hero on the map. Mid game Storm is all about being agressive. Even if you are just farming the enemy, the mere threat of you being missing will cause most solo heroes to play extra cautious. Make sure you always have a Town Portal Scroll ready, as Storm Spirit is one of the best counter initiators in the game.

Teamfighting as Storm:

While Ball Lightning is amazing for initiation, you almost never want to be the person to start a big 5v5 engagement. Although you are hard to pin down, you are still squishy, and if you zip right into a big disable like Ravage, it could spell Doom (literally) for you and ultimately your team. A good Storm Spirit player will sit outside a fight, and wait to zip in until the initiation (hopefully by your team). Nothing adds is more confusing for an enemy team than to have a Storm Spirit zipping around during a fight, causing chaos. Make sure to use Orchid Malevolence on their main caster ( Tinker, Lion, Puck, etc.) and Electric Vortex their highest damage dealer. Drop Static Remnants in the middle of people, and Overload slow the HELL out of everyone. Remember, almost nobody can run away from you. That is unless you have no mana.

Late Game:

Although he can snowball hard into the mid game, Storm Spirit is actually at his strongest in the late game. Now that you have lots of mana regen items, you have almost no limit on how much you can use Ball Lightning, allowing you to zip all over THE ENTIRE MAP. The reason Storm Spirit is such a strong pick is that he is much stronger late game than most solo mids with a few exceptions ( Tinker, Shadow Fiend), and is not really weak at any other points (besides pre-6). While you are not giving your team map control, you can farm almost as fast as an Anti-Mage with Battle Fury. The combo is: Ball Lightning into the middle of the creeps (either in lane or a jungle camp). Then attack, Static Remnant, attack, clean up. You can farm waves and stacks in a few seconds using this method, then quickly regen all of your mana back. This can allow you to quickly farm up important late game items, like Scythe of Vyse and buyback. Post 40 minutes, always make sure you have buyback on Storm, as you can easily TP then Ball Lightning back into the fight. Your main goal late game is to create space for your team by terrorizing their supports, allowing your team to farm, secure towers, take Roshan or do whatever the hell they want to do. However, make sure you do not overextend and go too far. Dying at an inopportune time can cause serious problems for your team, especially if the game is close, as you can no longer punish them severely for overextending themselves. Be smart, but most importantly make sure you are able to land your disables quickly on the right targets and be as slippery as possible. Whenever your team takes Roshan, you should always pick up the Aegis of the Immortal, unless there is Cheese and your carry needs the two lives badly. You are debatably the best Aegis of the Immortal carrier in the game. Oh yeah, and have fun! Late game Storm Spirit is one of the most fun heroes to play in Dota!

Best Friends and Worst Enemies

Best Friends:


All of Abaddon's skills work well with Storm Spirit. Mist Coil is a great long range heal that can save the life of a squishy hero like Storm Spirit. Aphotic Shield is the reason that these two have been buddies since middle school. This skill allows Storm Spirit to dive towers HARD as early as 7-8 minutes into the game. Also, it can be a life saver late game, purging silences and stuns that would otherwise prove deadly ( Flaming Lasso, I'm looking at you). Even Curse of Avernus can provide some helpful attack speed pre- Orchid Malevolence, while an Aghanim's Scepter upgraded Borrowed Time makes Storm Spirit almost unkillable in teamfights.

Other Friends:

Very similarly to Abbadon's Aphotic Shield and Mist Coil, Shallow Grave can allow Storm to dive towers with ease, while Shadow Wave helps keep his low HP pool topped up. While Weave armor can be a godsend for Storm Spirit, it cannont rival the clutch plays the Aphotic Shield purge is capable of lategame.

Your incredible initiation allows Legion Commander to have none of her own and build a quick damage item (like Armlet of Mordiggian), and can secure her incredibly early and easy Duel wins. You both with snowball to a massive lead, especially if you are able to grab a quick Bloodstone. Similarly to Abaddon, her Press the Attack can help remove pesky silences and stuns late game.

Your plethora of late game disables can help him easily land Ghost Ship- Torrent combos, but that is not what makes the Admiral such great friends with Storm Spirit. His X Marks the Spot can provide almost infinite utility for you: quick trips to and from fountain to fill up on mana, and a fail safe that can allow almost unlimited chasing/diving. You can even use up all your mana and be safe! And lets not even start on the Ghost Ship buff...

This one should be pretty obvious. Although Crystal Maiden is not the most perfect support for Storm Spirit, a few points in Arcane Aura early can win games on its own. Your mana problem ends as soon as you grab Orchid Malevolence, and you should be able to gank the other team to victory, as long as Crystal Maiden doesn't feed and is a good ward ***** like she is supposed to be.

Worst Enemies:

This guy can go back to hell. Seriously, his ultimate has to be my least favorite thing in Dota. It completely destroys squishy Intelligence casters, like yourself, Puck and Leshrac just to name a few. If you get Doomed in any fight you are useless, you have to pretty much rely on your teammates to save you/win the fight. Without Overload, your right click is pretty weak until late game, and by the that time Doom bringer might have an Aghanim's Scepter... However, a teammate like Dazzle, Phoenix, Io or Oracle (yes I know he isn't in the game yet) can help you survive the Doom long enough to become useful again. Oh yeah, and in this patch he is a top tier hero, so expect him often.

Other Enemies:

You and Queen of Pain are very similar heroes. You are both strong ganking squishy Intelligence mid heroes that rely on getting a jump on their enemies. While she has no natural lockdown, she will most definetely rush an Orchid Malevolence when facing you. While you easily outclass her lategame, make sure you always get the jump on her rather than vice versa, as if she Orchids you and has her full combo ready, you are almost guaranteed to be dead.

His Mana Leak absolutely destroys you before you have 2-3 regen items up, as it does a percentage of your max mana, which can be devastating on Storm Spirit. Also, his Recall can turn what you thought was an easy kill into a death. However, post 30 minutes, this guy stops being a real problem.

The bane of every Intelligence hero, you do suprisingly well against him in lane, as you have a low CD low mana spell in Static Remnant, which can remove Curse of the Silent without a problem. However, the Global Silence into Last Word combo can make your life HELL if the enemy Silencer is getting particularly fed up with you. Oh yeah, and he can steal your intelligence.

This hero pretty much counters everyone in the game. Long range slow? Check. Instant Silence? Check. Spammable Nuke? Check. Insane burst damage? CHECK MATE. While Arcane Bolt and Concussive Shot are easy to dodge with Ball Lightning, Ancient Seal + Mystic Flare absolutely wrecks you. Try to avoid dying to his Arcane Bolt spam early, and get an Orchid Malevolence ASAP. Then, go gank him and make sure you get your silence off before he gets his, as he is even squishier than you are.

Closing Thoughts

Storm Spirit is a super fun hero! No matter how poorly the game is going, you can still have fun by zipping around like a boss. While Storm Spirit does have a pretty standard build, remember it depends on the game, and anything can work with and against the right heroes. Have fun owning pubs with this handsome devil!

This is my first ever guide on Dotafire, so any feedback would be greatly appreciated. Tell me what you like and don't like, so I can make future guides even better!


I wrote this guide towards the end of 6.81, so lots of changes have come about since then.

Important Notes:

My boy Sumail from EG brought Storm Spirit to the forefront of the pro scene, popularizing the Bloodstone Rush as well as the greedy no Vortex, max Overload build. While this build is extremely strong, it relies on a team with good communication and proper disables, and is pretty risky if you are simply playing a pub.

The biggest change to Storm came in 6.84 with the massive nerf to his vision in Ball Lightning. This mostly impacts offensive zips, so make sure you have offensive wards in order to make ganking the enemy much easier and safer.

Lots of new items were added to the game in 6.84, but none of them fit storm very well. The only one I can see getting picked up is a Moon Shard for late game DPS if you are 6 slotted. Stay away from the gimicky Octarine Core and Lotus Orb. However, Enchanted Mango and Glimmer Cape are not completely awful.

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