This guide covers the hero Weaver and how to play him in all three lane positions, as well as what items you should purchase for him, how you should play, and how you should level his skills. Weaver is an excellent agility semi carry with 2 extremely good escapes that make killing you a serious pain for the opposing team. Because of his 2 abilities "Time Lapse" and "Shukuchi" you have the ability to fight near death, and then have the choice to escape, or double down with your "Time Lapse". Combine this with the correct item build and you should be able to dominate whatever lane you are in.
So lets talk items and order. This section of the guide covers playing Weaver in the offlane. Because of this, all you should be buying is Stats and Regen, i cant stress the importance of this enough as it could make the difference between life, death, and First Blood early game. To fulfill this we start out with stat items, 1 set of tangos, 3 Iron Branches, a Ring of Protection, and a Circlet. The Tangos give you much needed regen, as you want to leave lane as little as possible. The 3 iron branches give you stat boosts, and are cost to efficiency, one of the best items in the game. Later in the early game you can turn this into a wand for more regen and early survivability. Next, the Ring of Protection gives you some much needed armor to reduce some of the damage you'll take in lane. And finally a Circlet to give you some extra stats in lane. All around stats is always a good way to start the game.
Next is what items you should be buying early game and have prior to the 10 minute mark. To start off, finish the wand we talked about earlier. This will give you some extra health and mana regen as well as consolidating much needed space in your inventory. After that you should follow up with a Ring of Aquila as the stats and bonuses this offers early game are amazing. (Note. Make sure to turn off the ring early game as it will push your lane if you do not) The ring gives you some much needed mana regen so you can continue to use your Shukuchi without having to go back to regen mana. Following this should be your boots by the 10 minute mark. The only real choice here is power treads as they are cost effective and give amazing stat boots. (Note. If you have mastered tread switching this is also an added bonus to buying power treads) You want all of these items done early game and prior to the 10 minute mark, if you don't have them, it means you are behind in farm and will cause you to continue to fall behind.
Now lets talk mid game (10-20 minutes) During this time there is only one item you should be focused on buying, and it is the most essential item to your build. During the mid game you want to focus on building a Linken's Sphere as fast as possible. This item is core for Weaver as it allows him to bypass the first ability used on him, giving you more time to pop Shukuchi in the case of surprise ganks. Also the stats it gives you continue to be amazing as the mana regan allows you to continue to spam abilities, and bonus damage and stats is always a major plus. The order you can purchase items for the Linken's is whatever seems best for you during game, but as a baseline i usually purchase Ring of Health first as it can be purchased in the side shops. From that i usually complete the Perseverance for the bonus health and mana regen, this makes staying alive in lane much easier. Following that is just the ultimate orb and that should be your Linken's.
Late game is when your items pickups for Weaver get a little more open, and you should pick up whatever feels best based on the game situation next. A couple good items for Weaver late game are Monkey King Bar, Butterfly, and Desolator. The most common pick for Weaver after Linken's Sphere tends to be the Desolator. However i personally disagree with this choice, preferring to go Monkey King Bar next. My reasoning for this is the bonus damage and attack speed for weaver is awesome for this build, and the Zero miss chance means that all your attacks will hit, regardless of evasion or you position on high or low ground. In addition your Swarm ability already lowers Armor which is one of the big stats of the Desolator. However i suggest going with whatever feels most comfortable for you, play a few games and experiment with what feels best. However no matter what item you choose to go for after Linken's, be it MKB or Desolator, i stress that the next best pick up is the Butterfly. This items wins games in my opinion as the attack speed you output in addition to your Geminate Attack allows you to just eat through enemies health. Woe unto them if they stumble upon you alone in the forest with a Butterfly in your backpack. It also give you evasion, giving you yet another means of dodging enemy attacks. Following this is as i said before, whichever item you didn't purchase between the MKB and the Desolator however for the sake of this guide we will go with the build i prefer and pick up the Desolator after the Butterly, giving you some extra armor reduction and damage.
Now at this point its up to you what to buy, as if you already have all these items the game has probably gone on for quite some time. In addition Weaver has the ability to snowball out of control if hes gets good farm, so if you are especially filthy, you may be able to pick up some extreme late game items. These will depend entirely on how your game is going and who you are playing against. however in this guide I've included a few general suggestions of what you could get. These would include a Deadalus for extra damage and the bonus crit chance, effectively melting your opponents with pure damage. A Heart of Tarrasque is also a good pick up if you find you die to quickly in fights from lack of health. This will boost your regen and base health, making you near impossible to kill with a well timed Time Lapse. An Eye of Skadi is also an OK pick as the slow is good for taking down retreating enemies and the bonus stats are always helpful. And finally the all mighty Divine Rapier. Be careful if you pick this up as it could throw the entire game if you die. However your high survivability and damage make this a pick that will end games for sure if you feel truly confident in your position in game.
Now lets talk skills, and how we should be using them. First ill start with a breakdown of the individual skills and their uses, then talk about what order to get them in and why.
The Swarm (Q):
The Swarm is a skill that launches a swarm of 12 beetles that latch on to enemy units, dealing damage and causing armor reduction over time. It is a useful skill that i feel becomes more relevant mid to late game. As such i only put one level into it in the early stages of the game. This is not to say swarm is not useful, for it has many good uses. First and foremost of these is armor reduction. Ever time on of the beetles attacks it deals (15/20/25/30) damage per attack, and in addition with EACH attack reduces the opponents armor by 1. This makes it excellent for team fights as it can lower the entire opposing teams armor. Try to use this skill at the start of team fights when the enemy wont be able to target the beetles and deal with the armor reduction because they will be to busy fighting you. In addition the beetles also provide vision which can be useful for chasing down fleeing enemies. In addition to all this the range of The Swarm is a whopping 3000! Making it possible to launch this skill from a safe distance. Based on all these factors however, the use of the Swarm during the lane phase can be limited, and in addition your other skills are far more useful by comparison. Because of this, i take one level of The Swarm at level 9, but then refrain from leveling it until Shukuchi and Geminate attack are maxed.
Shukuchi is in my opinion the best skill you have with the exception of your ultimate. Shukuchi is a skill that renders you invisible for four seconds on a (12/10/8/6) second cooldown for only 60 mana! As if this wasn't already good enough, it also enables you to move at MAXIMUM MOVE SPEED for the duration of the skill and deal (90/110/130/150) damage to each enemy you pass though!(Only works the first time you pass though each unit) Needless to say the uses for this skill are many. First and foremost, in the perspective that you are playing in the offlane, Shukuchi is an amazing escape. The invisibility makes it possible to escape most heroes. However lets assume the opposing team has dust or wards, the max movement speed should in most cases allow you to run away fast enough that the opposing heroes wont have time to catch you. (Note if the enemy has placed wards in your lane, it is advisable to either de-ward yourself or have a support rotate to the offlane to do it for you.) Next, Shukuchi can be used to dodge some opponents skills! For example stuns that take time to reach you can be dodged by turning invisible. An example of this would be a Wraith King attempts to use his stun on you, if you Shukuchi right before the stun hits you, you will dodge it.(A case were this doesn't work is Vs snipers ult, which grants true vision of you after he has locked on.) Another use of Shukuchi is the damage it causes. This can be used to farm and last hit creeps, as well as harassing enemy heroes in lane. Shukuchi and run forward through enemy heroes then falling back can be a very annoying harass. A third use following this up is ganking. The Shukuchi will allow you to both initiate on fights if you feel comfortable, or to engage when your opponents have already engaged your teammates. Jumping in were they least expect you can turn the tide of a small fight for your team. (Note. I wouldn't be the initiator unless you feel confident you will survive the fight) A final use of Shukuchi is to chase down kills. Fleeing enemies with little health are easy pray to your max move speed and the damage it does, allowing you to clean up after fights with ease. Because Shukuchi is such a useful and versatile skill, i recommend leveling it quickly. It is essential you take it as your first skill for the escape and first blood potential. After that, i would continue to level it on and off with Geminate. Personally id take the levels at 1, 3, 5 and 7.
Geminate Attack (E):
Geminate Attack is your extremely useful passive skill that allows you to attack twice on a cooldown of (6/5/4/2.5) It is essential to level this early for the last hitting and farming bonus. This skill makes landing last hits far easier, allowing for both better farm and a higher output of damage. With this skill maxed you will eat through enemies health and also gain the ability to push towers much faster. There isn't much more to be said for this skill because its passive, its auto used, however id suggest leveling it fast, taking it at levels 2, 4, 8 and 10.
Time Lapse (R):
The Ultimate, your tool of destruction. Time lapse is in my opinion one of the best Ults in the game. It allows you to rewind time 5 seconds, returning your mana and health to the state they were in 5 seconds ago! (Note. This only applies to you and has no effect on gold, cooldown or XP) And with only a cooldown of (60/50/40) you don't need to worry to much about spamming this, especially with its (150/75/0) mana cost! (Note. even though it costs 150 mana to rewind, you also rewind that mana, meaning the mana is only needed to use the ability, and the mana is regained with the use of the ability.) Now lets talk uses. Time lapse can be used to rewind when you've lost most of your health, effectively giving you double the life. So when you feel low on health, rewind and gain back the health you had 5 seconds ago. this came make taking down much tankier enemies a lot easier. Also rewind can be used to juke your opponents. If you find yourself ganked, run away and let them chase you, the time lapse to rewind behind them and run the opposite direction! This makes escaping enemies virtually flawless when combined with Shukuchi. With such a powerful ult, it is essential that you level this at the standard 6, 11 and 16 without exception!
So now that we have a breakdown of the skills and items you should be buying for Weaver in game, lets talk about his style of play. Being an agility hero, Weaver excels at dishing out the damage, but not at receiving it. Early game he is very squishy and if the enemy team gets a stun off your health bar will melt. Because of this, play it safe and stay to the rear of your team when engaging. Then after the fight has begun come into the fight with your Shukuchi, dealing that damage, then begin unloading on the strongest opposing hero in the fight. In terms of stages of the game, as Weaver you will want to farm as much as possible until you have your Linken's sphere as this is essential to your build. It will block initiating stuns against you from the enemy team allowing you to engage freely. Also, an underrated factor about Weaver is his ability to push towers. The Geminate ability allows you to deal more damage to the tower per second, and in addition if the opposing team comes to stop or gank you, you can just Shukuchi away. Then once they leave the lane, you can return and keep pushing. This can be a very frustrating factor to deal with for the apposing team, and if they spend to much time trying to stop you, the rest of your team will have the ability to push.
Now in terms of the offlane specifically (first 10 min), avoid being stunned, first and foremost. Your primary directive should be to stay alive and gain as much XP as possible. Following this is farm. Unfortunately Weaver can sometimes be a very farm dependent hero. Because of this be prepared to spend the opening 10 minutes of the game gaining as much farm as you possibly can. You want to reach that Linken's sphere as fast as possible, as finishing that will make the rest of the game much easier for you.
Ill briefly talk about team fighting with Weaver. Because of his high DPS, hes great for tanking down the stronger heroes on the opposing team, however if you initiate to early the enemy team will melt you. Try to let your teammates engage first, then try to enter the fight with Shukuchi so you can deal that extra damage before revealing yourself, and give Shukuchi some time to cooldown so it can be used as an escape when needed. Also whenever possible in a teamfight, use Shukuchi to deal extra damage, and to move around the fight so the enemy team cant focus you. Appearing in different places to fight will allow you to last longer in fights and to deal more damage.
Here i will just list the pros and cons to Weaver to try and help you quickly understand the benefits to picking him.
Here i will list heroes that work well with Weaver, and heroes that you definitely don't want to go against as Weaver.
I will do my best to keep this as updated as possible, it may need a little touch up here and there. If you like the build, or found the guide helpful, please give it a good rating, it means a lot. And questions of comments feel free to PM me, or leave one here.
Build Valid as of V 6.80, Wend, March 26, 2014
Made changes to skill build, having players level Shukuchi faster instead of taking an extra early level in Geminate, and changed the first swarm point to level 9. Let me know how this transition feels.
Build Valid as of V 6.80, Thursday, March 27, 2014
Made changes to friends and foes adding AA to the list. In addition on modified builds 2 and 3 so that instead of displaying lane builds, it shows other possible builds you wanted to see, including one that has a BKB in it. I also modified build 2 and 3 to include leveling your Shukuchi faster. If these meet more to your satisfaction let me know, and please give me an up vote if you think it improved the guide, as the rating isnt very good right now. :'(
Build Valid as of V 6.80, Thursday, April 3, 2014
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