Ring of Basilius and Aura items
The last thing I want to mention within the sphere of items is the Ring of Basilius.
Ring of Basilius (RoB or Basi) is an aura based item that is often purchased in the early game, and it’s important to realize a few nuances.
The item itself gives you +7 damage, but all of the other benefits are aura based. For the aura you get +0.65 mana per second for you and your allies and +2 armor. If 2 heroes in your lane both have a RoB, then the aura components are wasted when you are near each other since auras of the same kind do not stack in Dota 2.
The final point to make about Ring of Basilius is that it’s important to turn off the aura in the early game. If you leave the aura on, it provides a 2 armor aura to your creeps. If you turn off the aura, the armor and mana aura only affects your allied heroes! To turn off the aura, just left click the item in your inventory, or press the hotkey associated with it.
If you give your creeps 2 extra armor, it becomes very difficult to keep your creep equilibrium static, so make sure that the aura is turned off until you want to push your wave.
A couple examples of other items you should not duplicate are Mekansm, an aoe heal that cannot be used by 2 different heroes in 1 teamfight, and Vladmir’s Offering or ring of aquila, which are upgradeded versions of Ring of Basilius.
Try not to have multiples of these items in a lane, and in the late game make sure that multiple heroes don’t build the same aura item.
The shop in Dota 2 is organized by category such as damage items, defensive items, or support items. These categories are all on a different tab. My first recommendation is to change the shop to the grid view instead of the line view. In the upper left corner of the shop (click on the shop button to open the shop) you can switch between each view. This will help you see all of the items at the same time.
In Dota 2, there are two kinds of items. There are basic components, which are the items that can be bought directly from the shop. From these basic items you can make upgraded items, which take a predefined mix of basic items to create an item that has more power than its components combined. You can view these completed items in the Upgrades tab of the shop.
The Basics tab has 4 columns as follows:
- Consumable items such as regen, Tp scrolls, Couriers, and Observer Wards/Sentry Wards.
- All of the basic and medium level stat items. That includes all of the +3 stat, +6 stat, +10 stat, and the +1 to all, and +2 to all stat stat items.
- Armor, Damage, Damage prevention and attack modifying items.
- Regen items, simple components, Boots of Speed and random standalone items.
All of the items that you can see in the shop here in the Basics section can be purchased in the team’s base shop. However, there are a few items not located there.
The other shop is called the Secret Shop. There are two secret shops on the map, one for each team.
The secret shop sells the most powerful of every item type such as +25 to stat items, +60 damage Sacred Relic, and the Hyperstone, which gives +55 AS.
The last shop in the game is called the Side Shop. The purpose of the side shop is to provide most of the items that heroes will purchase in the early game. These shops are there so that your hero spends less time running back and forth to base or using the team’s courier.
You will see a mixture of regular shop items, and a few secret shop items that are common in the early game.
The most important item in the side shop that isn’t here is the Ring of Protection, and as such is the only item you have to really plan ahead for in the early game. The Ring of protection is required for you to build a Ring of Basilius or Tranquil Boots, so you will have to ferry it out in the early game using a courier or headed back to base.
Some common items that you can make and buy entirely at the Side shop are:
- Poor Man’s Shield
- Phase Boots
- Power Treads
- Arcane Boots
- Oblivion Staff
- Ring of Health
- Orb of Venom
- Blink Dagger
- Quelling Blade
- Stout Shield
- TP Scroll
- Hood of Defiance
- Medallion of Courage
- Helm of the Dominator
Now that you’ve seen where and what you can buy in the game, let’s talk about upgrading your component items into even better items.
Every Upgraded item has a combination of items that creates a better item. If all of those items are together in your inventory, they automatically become a new item. To check what the requirements are, click the upgrades tab of the shop and left click on the item you want to build. It will show what items build into it.
In the case of the Shivas above, we have 2 components that go into it. The first item is the Platemail, and the second is the Mystic Staff. The piece of paper that shows with the item is called a recipe. A recipe is unique to each item that requires it, and it serves the purpose of balancing the item’s price. In the case of Shivas, I need a Shivas recipe to complete the item.
Keep in mind that recipes do nothing for you until the item is built, unlike components, so this should almost always be the last item that you purchase when building an upgraded item.
However, not all items need recipes. To make an Oblivion Staff, you need a Quarterstaff, a Robe of the Magi, and a Sage’s Mask.
Now that you know how to make Upgraded items, click over to the Upgrade tab and we can see the categories.
- All of the basic stat items, some boot upgrades and a few items that don’t fit other categories.
- All of the support themed items. This means items that can apply auras, heals, or buffs to allies.
- Offensive/utility Int based items. They all have very different uses, so make sure that they are synergistic with your hero and what you need for the game.
- Major damage items. These items are largely used to increase your killing potential through basic attacks. Some also have utility with their damage, such as a chance to stun your opponents on attack.
- Most of these items are defensive in nature but some also have offensive or utility properties in addition.
- Most of these items have unusual effects that don’t all stack together like lifesteal, Desolate orb, or Skadi slow. Be careful when buying multiples of these. You can usually only have 1 UAM item or skill in the game, so read carefully when you plan out your item builds and make sure they don’t interact negatively with your hero’s skills, or you will waste some of your gold.
When Match Making Rating (MMR) went public, players became very focused on raising a number linked to their profile. When things go bad and you lose games, all players look for the reason they lost — and it’s human nature to look at your allies’ mistakes first before you look at yourself.
The biggest misconception in communities of all matchmaking video games is the fake principle of “MMR Hell”. The idea is that you are unlucky and get worse than average teammates which result in you not advancing in MMR. This simply doesn’t exist.
The reality is that being good at Dota is extremely multidimensional, as you’ve probably figured out from this guide.
For example, it’s easy to look at your Kill/Death/Assist ratio and notice that yours is better than your teammates’. This leads you to think that your teammates obviously died too many times and that you played better, but perhaps you didn’t back them up enough. Maybe you didn’t do a good enough job zoning the offlaner, pulling, ganking, or last hitting.
There are MANY reasons that games are lost, but the chances of you getting unlucky with allies is the least likely.
To raise your MMR, you need to get better at Dota, and you are the player that you have the most impact on. If getting better at Dota is your goal, focusing on fixing your mistakes game to game is the most productive way to do it: otherwise you’ll likely grow more frustrated, continue to stagnate in skill, and stop having fun.
Maybe getting really good at Dota isn’t your goal, though — maybe you just came here to learn a few things so that playing Dota casually is a bit easier.
Regardless of your intentions, you are going to run into players that are angry and mean. They might believe in MMR Hell, they might be taking their frustrations out on you when they make mistakes, or they might just genuinely be assholes and taunt you whenever they can. If you encounter anyone in Dota 2 that is mean to you, I recommend that you immediately mute them.
To mute a player in Dota 2, open the scoreboard in the upper left, find the person that you don’t want to hear from, and click either the “T” button (for text chat), the Speaker icon (for voice), or both. The safest way to protect your enjoyment of the game is to mute them immediately.
If they were being extra mean to you or someone else, you get bonus points from me if you defend the other players in chat and use the report function to report them for communication abuse, this is the proper way of saying “this guy is using his words to hurt people for some reason.”
I believe that games like Dota 2 can take normal competitive people and turn them mean because of under-performing allies, disappointment in themselves, and the general frustration that comes from losing; this doesn’t make it okay to spread that anger to other people. It isn’t just social courtesy, though — it significantly impacts how well your team plays.
Morale is not the easiest thing for the average player to improve on since a lot of it comes from outside of the game. However, it is the biggest non game-world effect on your performance.
Do not flame or criticize your allies when they make mistakes. Don’t call them idiots, and don’t talk down to your allies as if you’re superior (your MMR is likely similar). Say good job when they get a solo kill, or win a teamfight. Even if you think they are playing terribly, some false encouragement will make your allies play with less stress, they will feel less pressure, and their increased morale will help them play better than usual. Even saying negative things with a positive tone (aka, constructive criticism) can vastly change the responses you get — even if most people don’t respond to any kind of criticism well.
By definition, MMR is a measurement of how much impact you have on a Dota 2 game.
That includes how well you last hit, how efficient your farming patterns are, how good you are at attack moving, calculating chain stunning, how good your map awareness is, how well you place wards, how well you teamfight and how well you itemize. Can you pull without missing the connect? Is your late game decision making correct? Does your negative attitude affect the rest of your team, lowering their ability to perform at their MMR?
All of these things matter in every single Dota game. Don’t assume that you are superior to one of your teammates just because they did a few extremely stupid things that you never would. There was probably an error that you made that they wouldn’t have.
It’s also important to remember that you can raise your MMR with any position in Dota. For a safe estimate, until you reach the 5,000 MMR range, it’s very possible to even play support and to support so well that you consistently increase your rank.
Don’t look to your allies as the excuse of why you aren’t winning — you are the only player you always play with. Don’t look to the role you are playing as to why you aren’t winning (unless you are better at other roles, then blame yourself), and make sure that your attitude doesn’t prove toxic to your allies, since them playing worse can easily affect your team’s chance of winning.
Focus on your mistakes. If you have trouble seeing your mistakes, ask a friend who is better, watch your own replays, watch a pro player stream a game, or watch a pro game to see top level performance and emulate what they do.