Green Dota 2 Heroes and why people hate them

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You know them, you’ve played against them and maybe you even know how to play and abuse them yourself. Green Dota 2 heroes can be extremely annoying to deal with. Viper, Venomancer, Necrophos, Pugna, Earth Spirit, Rubick, Abyssal Underlord and other such heroes require teams to synergize better than usual in order to deal with the threat they pose.

Playing casually against green heroes tends to lead to poor results, simply because of what they do and how they develop throughout the game.
Let’s take a look at 7 green Dota 2 heroes and figure out what makes them strong and what can be done to counter them.

Viper

With its nasty combination of move and attack speed slow, good stats, magic resistance, long attack range and high damage, Viper can destroy almost any mid hero in a purely 1v1 matchup. Understanding this situation, teams often dedicate their roaming support to help their own mid-laner during the laning phase. More often than not, camping mid with a support hero won’t really allow you to kill a Viper, but it will guarantee that your mid doesn’t get completely destroyed.

dota 2 viper images

As the game progresses, Viper loses much of its early game power, unless it’s fed and has a net worth either equal or greater than that of the enemy cores. Countering this hero requires you to know its 3 main weaknesses:

  • he’s very slow and immobile. Subsequently, heroes with great mobility, such as Weaver, Anti-Mage, Razor and others tend to do great against him in the mid-game.
  • he’s really bad at dealing with illusion-based heroes. This is one of the main reasons why a Viper pick is often countered by a Terrorblade, Chaos Knight or Phantom Lancer pick.
  • he’s a slow farmer. Generally, people don’t pick Viper in farm-focused strategies. They pick him so that they can push and fight early. The longer the game goes, the more Viper falls behind in farm.

Countering Viper in the laning phase requires you to pick a hero that is just as cancerous as he is at this stage of the game. From experience, Razor and Vengeful Spirit tend to do very well against him, although the second choice may not be well suited for playing in this lane.

Venomancer

Like Viper, Venomancer is another hero that excels in ways which really makes it hard to play against him. He’s not as survivable, but he’s faster and has a higher offensive potential. He can fight, push or farm really fast, depending on what is needed of him.
In the laning phase, Venomancer can be a menace and generally requires you to keep your distance. Not doing that can easily result in certain death, especially if there’s an enemy roamer involved. The amount of slow and damage over time which Venomancer is capable of outputting is absolutely ridiculous. One Poison Sting and a Venomous Gale and you’re doomed.

dota 2 venomancer images

Venomancer is usually countered in the early game by having multiple heroes gank him as much as possible. Later on, a Pipe of Insight is absolutely essential, as well as having a lineup with high mobility, silences, crowd control or nukes (either physical or magical). Basically, you cannot allow this hero to cast all of his spells. Otherwise, even if you end up killing him, it’s likely that your entire team will go down in the process.
Heroes that tend to do well against Venomancer are those that can either keep the distance (Sniper) or have excellent sustainability and health regeneration. As a rule of thumb, damage over time is really well countered by healing over time.

Necrophos

This hero often feels like a complete joke. Especially now, after the Diffusal Blade nerf. There’s no way to deal with his Ghost Shroud except by purchasing a Nullifier, but that’s generally a late game item because it costs a lot. Until you have such an item, Necrophos is very hard to bring down with a physical damage-oriented lineup. People try to deal with him by going for heroes with high magical damage output, but even that strategy is unreliable simply because a Hood of Defiance (which costs just 1700 gold) offers great protection against this type of damage.

dota 2 Necrophos images

Physical immunity for 4.5 seconds (level 4 Ghost Shroud) and 75% self-healing amplification. And you can double down on that by purchasing a Ghost Scepter or a Eul’s Scepter as well. In total, you can get to 8.5 or at least 7 seconds of physical immunity that way. So if you’re playing right clikers, good luck killing Necrophos.
This hero farms pretty fast and his abilities make him very durable in fights. Unless you can take advantage of his low mobility and overwhelm him with crowd control spells and damage, you’re going to have a lot of fights turned around against you in the blink of an eye.

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Pugna

Pugna is a high mobility, long cast range hero with an absolutely annoying toolkit. He can kill your creep waves and destroy your buildings before you even react. And when you do react, you hit another problem: he can stay back in team fights, use Nether Ward, Decrepify himself or his allies, and simply drain all of your HP from many miles away.
Dealing with Pugna requires teams to use positional strategies where they start the fight from multiple angles. A simple one-directional approach is usually doomed to fail simply because you’re taking too much damage from his Nether Ward, Nether Blast and Life Drain.

Dota 2 pugna images

Stopping a Pugna is more easily said than done, but if you’re serious about it you should start putting pressure on this hero from the laning phase. Like most heroes, Pugna is much weaker without his essential items and does not pose much of a threat if you ruin his first 10-15 minutes of the game.
Heroes that tend to do well against Pugna are right clickers that tend to buy an Orchid as part of their item build. Clinkz and Templar Assassin are definitely two of the best in this category.

Earth Spirit

This hero has been nerfed a lot of times, but it’s still incredibly strong in the right hands. And that’s because he has a complete toolkit for his standard role, which is roaming support.
He can initiate a fight from a long distance or escape it using his Rolling Boulder ability. When hitting a target with it, that target is also slowed down by 80% for up to 2 seconds. Combine that with an Orb of Venom and you’ll understand why people really hate playing mid against this hero in the laning phase. He’s basically worse than a Mirana that wants nothing else in the world than to hit you with an arrow.

Earth Spirit can also silence multiple targets for up to 3.5 seconds, and stun them for up to 2 seconds, using his Geomagnetic Grip and Boulder Smash abilities. And by the way, none of these abilities are targeted, so Linken’s Sphere doesn’t really protect you against them. This makes him really strong against heroes which heavily rely on their mobility and abilities to survive. For instance, Weaver, Storm Spirit or Ember Spirit.

Dota 2 Earth Spirit images

Another annoying thing that Earth Spirit can do is to save allies, either by kicking them away from the fight or turning them to stone (if he has an Aghanim’s Scepter).
Last but not least, massive AoE damage can be done using his ultimate, which tends to put entire teams on the run during big fights. If his enemies don’t run away, the hero can simply refresh the duration of his Magnetize by placing additional Stone Remnants next to them.

When playing against an Earth Spirit it’s really important to have good vision, so that you can dodge his Rolling Boulder. As the game progresses, you also need a Pipe of Insight to block most of the damage coming from his ultimate.

Rubick

Rubick is one of the most versatile supports in the game, being able to protect his team against magical damage, amplify the magical damage taken by his enemies, reposition and stun opponents during fights, decrease their damage, kill creep waves fairly easily and surprise everyone with his spell steals. And make no mistake, it’s enough for a Rubick player to have just one of those “patience from Zhou” moments like Na’Vi had against Invictus Gaming at The International 2012, and the entire game can change.

Dota 2 Rubick images

If you want to use a magic damage-oriented lineup, Rubick counters that. If you want to go for a team fight-oriented lineup, Rubick counters that as well. So overall, people tend to hate playing against this hero because with enough skill, he can undo even the most deadly combo-wombo of the enemy team.
The safest thing to do against Rubick is to pick heroes that don’t have too many great spells to steal, and then focus on dealing physical damage.

Abyssal Underlord

This is the kind of offlaner that you don’t want your enemies to pick, especially when you’re playing a carry that’s rather weak in the laning phase.
Abyssal Underlord is a very tanky hero that also happens to deal a lot of damage, farm really fast, weaken every opponent that’s close enough to him and relies on physical damage, and interfere with his enemies’ farm. Oh, I almost forgot: he also has a way of rooting heroes repeatedly and for long durations, which means that once he’s cast his Pit of Malice you need to stop whatever it is you’re doing and usually take a lot of damage while trying to reposition on the battlefield.

Dota 2 Underlord images

When the situation becomes desperate, Underlord can just teleport his entire team back to base if required (using his ultimate) and save everyone’s life in the process. And this ability cannot be stopped unless you manage to kill him while he’s channeling Dark Rift. Which usually won’t happen simply because, as I’ve already said, this monster is really really tanky. You get 40% attack damage reduction just from his Atrophy Aura alone.

Heroes that counter Abyssal Underlord in the laning phase are Razor and Ursa. Of course, almost any dedicated trilane can deal with him in the early stages of the game, but having to allocate so many resources just to deal with the enemy offlaner isn’t ideal and leaves your mid exposed to ganks.

Do you have a green Dota 2 hero that you enjoy picking or hate playing against? Let me know in the comments below.

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