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2 Votes

Venomancer, the All-rounder

November 22, 2013 by gosubay
Comments: 1    |    Views: 30809    |   

Build 1
Build 2

Support Venomancer

DotA2 Hero: Venomancer

Hero Skills

Venomous Gale

2 12 13 14

Poison Sting

1 6 8 9

Plague Ward

3 4 5 7

Noxious Plague

10 11 16


15 17 18

Venomancer, the All-rounder

November 22, 2013


Welcome to my first DOTA guide on how to play the Venomancer. I have played 20 games in the latest patch 6.79 and I have a record of 18-3 at the moment. I'm gosubay from Singapore and I play on the SEA server.

The Venomancer is a good all-rounded support hero who is capable of playing positions 2-5. He is an agility-based hero which allows him to be played as a semi-carry, but his spells are mostly support-oriented. This enables him to be pretty versatile with regards to strategic choices.

I usually play him on the off-lane (top lane for Radiant, bottom lane for Dire) because his plague wards allow for some much needed scouting, allowing the off-lane players to retreat if there is an incoming gank. It's usually best to play him with another hero in a dual-lane, although it is possible to solo the offlane as well.

Pros / Cons

Strong in the Early and Mid-game with Poison
Strong pushing potential
Good for Map vision and playing in the off-lane

No Disables
No Escape mechanism
A little squishy


Early game

I'll usually start off by buying the courier, some tangos and a ring of protection. If there is a hard support, I may let him buy both the wards and the courier. In general I prefer buying the courier than the wards because Venomancer can use plague wards to scout.

The ring of basilus is important because it gives the Venomancer a much needed mana regen, which basically enables him to spam wards continuously. I usually leave the aura on, although you might want to turn it off if you are solo-ing so that the creep wave doesn't push so far out.

If you are playing as the hard support, you should be upgrading the courier and buying the wards later on. If not, there are a variety of ways to play this out. I'll often go for Mekansm first if there is no other hard support to get it. If I'm playing as the second support (4th position), I may go for Drums of Endurance instead. If I'm playing as the 3rd core hero, I sometimes opt for the Hand of Midas instead as it allows you to level up quickly and it will pretty much pay for itself in the end.


Arcane boots are generally best if you are playing as a support. If you intend to play more of a semi-carry style, then a Power Threads would probably be more suitable as it will give you more boost in your stats. I would leave it in Strength Mode until my health pool increases.

I have been experimenting with various item builds. Aghanim Scepter seems to be the default choice (it's in the Suggested Item Build) but you should consider skipping it if your enemy heroes are mostly heroes who will end up buying Black King Bar (Sven, Luna etc.). Your ultimate is going to be pretty effective if your opponents are mostly low-hp intelligence heroes so upgrading Poison Nova with Aghanim Scepter is great.


The next item of choice is usually Eul's Scepter of Divinity. Cyclone can come in pretty handy especially vs carries with no BKB. You can also cyclone yourself if you get into a sticky situation during a team fight. I may go for Orchid sometimes if the enemy team has 2 heroes with escape mechanisms like Shadow Walk or Blink.

After that, you can either go for Scythe of Vyse if the enemy's carry is very powerful, or you could opt to go for Butterfly/Manta Style if you are one of the more important carries. Getting a Black King Bar could also be good if the opponent's lineup comprises multiple nukers like Invoker/Lina.


I almost always start off with Poison Sting. It's pretty good for harassing at level 1, especially if the enemy heroes in your lane are melee heroes. If they are both ranged, selecting Venomous Gale first could be good, especially if you are trying to go for an early first blood.

Plague Wards aren't too good at level 1 as they can be destroyed in 2 hits. You should probably try to be more passive at least until you are able to level it up to level 2, then you can start spamming the wards.

Plague Wards last for 40 seconds which is pretty long, so try to put one at the cliff overseeing the River to look out for potential ganks (not so important at the start as the Mid-Hero usually won't gank until level 6), and another one in the jungle.

I usually wait until level 10 to level up Poison Nova because it is such a mana-intensive spell and you rarely have enough mana to cast all your spells at the same time during a team fight. However, if you did go for the Arcane Boots and Ring of Basilus, then getting Poison Nova earlier on could be ok.


Here's a map on all the good places to Ward. It's basically the same as observer wards. Place them in places with good vision (not obstructed by trees, at the junction, on cliffs etc).

The main difference is that you can spam this as opposed to Observer Wards which come in limited supply.

Laning Phase

It's pretty easy to farm with Venomancer. His base damage is decent, and his attack animation/protectile speed is pretty good. Often at the start when the first creep wave meet, it's possible to zone out the enemy hero especially if he's melee, with your Poison Sting. Play more passively if the enemy team has a hard support with some nukes/disables such as the Crystal Maiden and wait until you get to level 2 with Gale.

When you hit level 3, this is when you first get to level up your Plague Wards. Plague Wards give away 20 xp so try not to plant them within Tower range unnecessarily. Use them more for defensive purposes and be prepared to deny them if the enemy heroes start attacking them.

At around level 5, you can start pushing the enemy tower already with your level 3 Plague Wards. They do a lot more damage and have more hp to absorb tower damage. Usually if you are successful in zoning out your opponent, you should be able to push the enemy tower pretty easily.

At this point, if you are able to take down the enemy tower in your lane, or have died once, you can probably consider rotating to another lane to help push the lane as well. I usually end up pushing the Mid-lane as it's pretty safe from ganking if you place your wards right.


At this point in time, you should have close to unlimited Mana, so make sure that you are always casting Plague Ward whenever you can. This allows you to leave a trail of Plague Wards, which give good vision of the entire map.

While the vision range of Plague Wards is significantly smaller than that of the Observer Ward, it's still pretty good. I tend to place them at the usual Observer Ward locations, as well as at multiple other locations around the map. especially on High ground so that you can overlook incoming enemies, as well as along the River.

If there is some downtime (after you die during a huge battle, or if you are retreating after pushing/fight), you should be jungling with your Plague Wards. Note that your Plague Wards last 40 seconds, so if the timer is after X:15, try to place the Plague Wards further away so that you don't end up blocking your creep camps from spawning during the next minute. It's pretty simple to jungle, just place a ward, shoot and run backwards. Farming Ancients is also relatively straightforward.

Team-Fights and the Late-Game

Venomancer cannot really initiate, but excels at pushing into the enemy's base with his Plague Ward providing vision on the High ground. Usually it's best for your other teammates to spread out and wait below while Venomancer places his wards and wait for the incoming creep wave to push forward.

I would often try to sneak into the middle of the fight and cast my poison nova and spam my Wards. Spamming wards is important because it's pretty easy to get some kills and finish off dying opponents with multiple plague wards even after you are slain in combat.

Cyclone/Hex the hard carry if you have the appropriate items, and cast gale if you can get a good angle to get the spell off.


Just a quick recap here

1. Harass the enemy Heroes during the laning phase with Poison Sting
2. Place Plague Wards for map vision in the jungle and at the cliff to ensure that you do not get backstabbed/ganked
3. Start pushing towers when you have level 3 Plague Ward
4. Start going for Mid-game Team fight items like Mekansm and Drums if you are playing more of a support row
5. Continue placing Plague Wards wherever you go to provide map vision all around the map
6. Venomancer is squishy, so try to play more cautiously and not rush into the middle of the fight.

That's all for this guide, I may consider adding more screenshots in the future. Thanks for reading!

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