Rylai the Crystal Maiden is a ranged intelligence Hero used as a hard support and disabler. She is perhaps best known for her powerful global mana regeneration aura. This aura allows mana dependent allies to excel during the early to mid game and the laning phase, and allows her to constantly activate her own spells without needing to worry much about the mana costs. She also has a high amount of early game presence with just a few points in her Crystal Nova and Frostbite abilities. Crystal Nova is a powerful area-of-effect nuke that slows both attack and movement speeds of enemies within an area for several seconds, while Frostbite encases an enemy in a block of ice for several seconds, immobilizing it and doing moderate damage per second. Combining these two abilities together along with a laning partner's own spells often results in the quick death of an enemy hero. Although her strong early game presence is quickly lost due to her extreme frailty and poor mobility, she can still inflict a heavy amount of damage in teamfights later on if she is able to channel her deadly ultimate, Freezing Field. Her Arcane Aura, strong disabling and nuking prowess, relative ease of usage, and almost complete lack of item dependence makes her a reliable support caster that can be useful in any team.
- Crystal Nova is a large area of effect nuke that also slows your enemies. You can hit enemies from 1100 units away with it (700 casting range + 400 radius).
- Frostbite is a great disable which prevents the target from moving or attacking. It also interrupts channelling spells and teleports. Unfortunately, it does not prevent enemy heroes from casting spells (except for True blinks).
- Arcane Aura benefits the whole team greatly, especially one with a strong caster/ganker line-up, as it grants them a better lane presence due to the increased number of spells they can use.
- Generally, 3 points in Arcane Aura, with 2 levels taken early, are sufficient for most of the game. Adjust your ability build to the needs of your team.
- This bonus is doubled on Rylai herself, granting a whopping +5 bonus mana/second at level 4.
- Freezing Field is an incredibly strong spell. However, it can be unpredictable and usually gets interrupted by your enemies very quickly. Freezing Field consumes a lot of mana, so use it sparingly.
- Many players choose not to level Freezing Field until quite late in the game, as it is a situational spell that is most effective in large clashes; and its use consumes a huge amount of mana. However, its slow and gigantic (if unpredictable) damage can be very useful in early game, especially against enemies that lack the means to interrupt it. Let your decision be informed by enemy line-up as well as laning composition.
- Crystal Maiden's potent spells grant her an incredible early-game roaming and ganking presence, particularly when her slow movement speed is offset with Tranquil Boots.
- Frostbite's 10 second duration on creeps can be used to earn Crystal Maiden some spending cash in the jungle, either during roams or while her carry's lane is uncontested.
- Observer Wards and Sentry Wards should be bought over and over again to provide map control throughout the match.
- Later on, Crystal Nova may be used to help push a lane without contesting carries for last hits, as the damage is not quite enough to kill a wave of creeps. However, make sure to keep it off cooldown in the possibility of an upcoming teamfight.
- In teamfights, cast Crystal Nova early to reduce incoming damage due to the attack speed slow.
- If you have a few coins to spare, buy items that boost your survivability, or get yourself an escape/positioning mechanism such as Blink Dagger or Force Staff.
- Freezing Field must be used at the right time to avoid interruption and being focused. Generally speaking, in an encounter it is best used after the initial nuking phase; when the enemy's stuns are on cooldown (building a Black King Bar will provide immunity to stuns; but Crystal Maiden does not typically get much gold and this can be very difficult to build in a game where your team is not getting a lot of kills). If your team has an initiator with the capability to disable a group of enemies, such as Tidehunter or Enigma, Freezing Field should be used in synchronization with their mass disable. Using Freezing Field very often results in Rylai's death, and she rarely is able to channel it for its full duration, but if she can maintain it even for a few seconds it will be useful for her team.
- Although Freezing Field's damage can be upgraded with Aghanim's Scepter, to do so is to gild the lily; Freezing Field at level 3 is staggeringly powerful even without a scepter and it's wiser to build items that improve her chances of channeling it.
- When you position yourself for Freezing Field, make sure you do not position yourself within 200 metres of your target as it seems that the explosions happen more frequently at 400 metres away from her. In another words, try stay far enough of everyone will get more damage to her but do not position her too far where her ultimate will not little.
- Rylai's name in Warcraft DotA was Rylai Crestfall. Her surname was removed in transition to Dota 2 for the implementation of her sibling rivalry with Lina.
- Crystal Maiden's mana regen aura used to be called Brilliance Aura.
- In early versions of DotA, Crystal Maiden and Lich used to share the same Frost Nova ability. However, in later updates, Crystal Maiden's Frost Nova was changed to Crystal Nova, turning it into a free-cast area-of-effect ability, while Lich kept the original effects.
- League of Legends features an item called Rylai's Crystal Scepter, a homage to the Crystal Maiden from the original DotA.
- Crystal Maiden's leveling-up response Play "Is it cold in here or is it just me?" is a reference to the action movie Demolition Man.
- Crystal Maiden's respawning line Play "You only live ice..." is a reference to the 1967 James Bond film You Only Live Twice based on the novel of the same name.
- Crystal Maiden's line Play "It's all fun and games until someone's frozen solid." is a reference to a novel written by Christopher Brookmyre entitled All Fun and Games until Somebody Loses an Eye.
- Crystal Maiden's rare response Play "Can you guess my... favorite poet?" is a reference to Robert Frost due to his last name.
- Fixed Freezing Field doing 99 blasts instead of 100
- Updated Freezing Field Play sound to match the new duration (old sound)
- Increased model scale from 0.81 to 0.95.
- Base Intelligence reduced from 21 to 19 (same base damage)
- Fixed sync on Freezing Field.
- Fixed Freezing Field channeling ending if you get purged.
- [Undocumented] Added a teleport animation to Crystal Maiden.
- [Undocumented] Added new Axe and Crystal Maiden responses.
- [Undocumented] Updated Crystal Maiden's textures.
- Fixed Crystal Nova vision.
- Fixed Freezing Field ground slow aoe being slightly off.
- Crystal Maiden illusions will no longer play her custom death anim.
- [Undocumented] Modified hero selection portraits of Bloodseeker and Crystal Maiden.
- You can now target-cast cast-attacks while disarmed (e.g. Frost Arrows while under Frost Bite).
- You can now target-cast cast-attacks while disarmed (e.g. Frost Arrows while under Frost Bite).
- Fixed Freezing Field to never land a splash too close to CM.
- Removed death effect blood from CM.
- Crystal Maiden has a new death animation.
- Fixed Freezing Field to favor splash locations near her.
- Fixed Brilliance Aura not affecting regular units.
- Fixed Frostbite not doing a ministun when cast.
- Fixed Frost Nova not giving visibility.
- Fixed Frostbite not revealing invisible units.
- Fixed Frostbite damage interval.
- Fixed Crystal Nova working on towers.
- Fixed Freezing Field not slowing attack speed.
- Fixed Frostbite visual effect appearing on the target even if the spell was blocked.
- Added 10 second creep duration exception for Frostbite.
- Crystal Nova attack speed slow from 20 to 30
- Frostbite cooldown from 10 to 10/9/8/7
- Freezing Field duration increased from 7 to 10 seconds
- Freezing Field explosion spawn radius and slow radius increased by 150
- Freezing Field explosion damage radius increased by 50
- Frostbite damage interval from 70 per 1 second to 50 per 0.5 seconds (total damage now 150/200/250/300)
- Freezing Field explosion radius increased from 230 to 250
- Base intelligence reduced by 3.
- Base Intelligence reduced from 21 to 19 (same base damage as before).
- Freezing Field
- AS/MS AoE slow increased from -20/-30 to -30/-30.
- Aghanim's Scepter AS/MS AoE slow increased from -50/-30 to -50/-50.
- Arcane Aura mana regen increased from 0.5/1/1.5/2 to 1/1.5/2/2.5.
- Freezing Field:
- Explosion AoE increased from 215 to 230.
- Aghanim's Scepter attack speed reduction aura increased from -20 to -50.
- Arcane Aura has twice the effect on Crystal Maiden.
- Freezing Field duration increased from 4 to 7 seconds.
- Freezing Field AoE increased by 100 (Explosion AoE adjusted to keep damage probabilities equivalent).
- Freezing Field level 1 manacost decreased from 300 to 200.
- Crystal Nova
- Damage increased from 80/130/180/230 to 100/150/200/250.
- Slow duration reduced from 5 to 3.5/4/4.5/5 seconds.
- Replaced Frost Nova with a similar new ability Crystal Nova:
- AOE Damage: 80/130/180/230. AOE: 400. Slow Duration: 5. Attack Speed Reduction: 20%. Movement Speed Reduction: 30%.
- Cast Range: 700. Cooldown: 15. Manacost: 100/120/140/160.
- Arcane Aura lowered from 0.75/1.5/2.25/3 to 0.5/1/1.5/2.
- Arcane Aura improved a bit.
- Changed Freezing Field mechanics a bit. The slow now comes from the area rather than the explosions. Changed the distribution method on Freezing Field as well.
- Arcane Aura now has a global effect.
- Fixed Brilliance Aura to properly stack with Ring of Basilius
- Improved Brilliance Aura a bit
- Frostbite reduced from 2/2.5/3/3.5 to 1.5/2/2.5/3, damage per second increased to equal the same total damage as before
- Freezing Field recoded to allow for multiple instances.