- 1 Damage Sources
- 2 Damage Types
- 3 Physical
- 4 Magical
- 5 Pure
- 6 Other Health Affecting Sources
- 7 Deprecated Damage Types
- 8 External Links
Damage can be dealt by attacks, abilities and items. Attack damage is the damage dealt per attack, and is displayed on the sword icon in the HUD. Heroes start off with a base damage (not listed on hero pages, see official site) plus 1 extra damage per point of primary attribute. As heroes level up, they gain primary attributes and therefore gain damage. Items that grant increased "Damage" increase attack damage, and do not affect abilities and items. Abilities and items can also deal damage. These are generally fixed. However, some abilities can be upgraded with Aghanim's Scepter, while others scale with hero stats, conditions or enemy hp etc.
All forms of damage in Dota 2 are classified by damage types. There are 3 primary damage types: Physical, Magical, and Pure. Physical Damage can be reduced by Physical Armor or Damage Block, Magical Damage can be reduced by Magical Damage Resistance, while Pure Damage cannot be reduced by either armor or magical damage resistance. All 3 primary damage types have some interaction with other damage-related game mechanics as noted in the table below. There are two additional damage types that can reduce a unit's current health: HP Removal and Negative Regeneration; however, these two types are unaffected by almost all other damage-related game mechanics.
|Game Mechanic||Damage Type's Interaction with the Mechanic|
|Physical, Attacks||Physical, Abilities||Magical||Pure||Other|
|Ethereal||no effect||no effect||amplified||normal||normal|
|Damage negation3||no effect||no effect||no effect||no effect||normal|
|Anti-Magic Shell||normal||normal||no effect||normal||normal|
|Invulnerability||no effect||no effect||no effect||no effect||depends4|
1 Attacks from wards are not blocked.
2 For abilities that are not blocked, see next section.
3 These categories only count ability effects which directly manipulate damage, reducing, amplifying or completly blocking them, such as Bloodrage, Bristleback and Refraction. They do not include abilities which amplify or reduce damage by increasing/reducing magic resistance/armor of units, such as Veil of Discord, Spell Shield, Amplify Damage and Warcry.
4 Some source of HP removal are coded to not harm invulnerable units, but some are able to harm them through invulnerability.
5 By itself, Spell Immunity does not interact with any damage type. All spells are rated as to whether or not they can pierce spell immunity independent of their damage type. Thus, spell immunity only governs if a spell will have any effect, not how much damage it will inflict. To receive no effects from a spell, the spell must not pierce Spell Immunity and the target would require both Spell Immunity and 100% damage reduction of the damage type the spell inflicts.
Physical Damage can be inflicted by regular attacks from all units (including structures), and by certain abilities. Physical damage is modified by both armor and damage block, is unaffected by magic resistance, and cannot affect ethereal units.
Physical damage is further divided into attack type categories that modify damage based on the target's armor type. All physical damage is affected by both armor and armor type. For example, piercing damage deals 150% damage to unarmored units (such as lane creeps) but only 50% damage to heroes. Such resistances are applied in addition to resistance from armor value. A full list of the attack types of creeps and summoned units can be found here. (Table of attack and armor types)
The only exception to this is damage from cleave, which is reduced by armor type and damage block but not by armor value. Practically speaking this means armor is worthless against cleave damage. Splash (from ranged attacks) is reduced as normal.
Effective Physical Damage by Attack Type and Armor Type
Master Formula for Attack Damage
Physical Damage Abilities
Certain spells deal physical damage instead of magical. Physical damage from abilities are treated as Hero damage, and deals full damage to all units except for structures and siege creeps. Damage from abilities can be reduced by armor value and damage block, but will not trigger abilities that check for attacks such as Counter Helix. Such abilities cannot be evaded, except with Pseudo-Evasion. The following abilities deal physical damage:
1 Damage cannot be reduced by damage block.
2 Half of damage dealt is physical.
Magical Damage is caused primarily by spells, although not all do magic damage. Magic damage is reduced by magic resistance, and deals higher damage against ethereal units. The majority of abilities in Dota 2 deal magical damage.
All abilities not explicitly listed under another damage type section inflict magical damage.
Pure Damage is a damage type that is not reduced by magic resistance or amplified by magical damage amplification like Veil of Discord or Ancient Seal. It also fully ignores armor and damage block. However, it can be reduced or amplified by skills which reduce/amplify every damage type, like Dispersion or Soul Catcher. Pure damage affects spell immune units (since spell immunity doesn't block damage by itself), but that does not mean that a spell with pure damage can target spell immune units (eg Brain Sap deals pure damage, but cannot be cast on spell immune units). It does not affect invulnerable units. The following abilities deal pure damage:
1 Mist Coil deals pure damage to the caster, but magical damage to the target.
2 Laguna Blade deals pure only when upgraded by Aghanim's Scepter, else it deals magical damage.
3 When the Spirit Bear dies, Lone Druid takes 10% of his max hp as pure damage.
4 Mystic Snake deals pure damage to units turned into stone by Stone Gaze, and magical damage to all others.
5 Whirling Death deals pure damage if it cuts trees within its 300 radius on the same cast, else it deals magical damage.
Other Health Affecting Sources
HP Removal and Negative Regeneration are two other ways to lose health. However, they are not attributed as damages types and thus not interrupt Healing Salve or Blink Dagger. They also do not trigger on-damage effects such as Spiked Carapace.
Many HP removal effects are not lethal, and reduces the unit's HP to a minimum of 1. The following abilities use HP Removal:
|Ancient Apparition - Ice Blast1 2||Axe - Culling Blade1 3|
|Kunkka - Ghostship4||Oracle - False Promise1 4|
|Terrorblade - Sunder||Undying - Soul Rip5|
2 The shatter upon dropping below the health threshold is dealt in form of HP removal. Impact damage and damage over time is magical.
3 Culling Blade kills the target by dealing the threshold number in form of HP removal to the target. Deals magical damage if the target is above the health threshold. Unlike other spells which use HP removal, Culling Blade's killing blow is reflected by Blade Mail.
4 The delayed damage is dealt in form of HP removal. Borrowed Time still treats it as damage though (heals off of it).
5 Soul Rip takes health in form of HP removal from all units counted towards the damage/heal.
The following abilities cause HP Removal to the caster:
|Armlet of Mordiggian (2400) - Unholy Strength1||Bloodstone (4900) - Pocket Deny1 2|
|Huskar - Burning Spear||Io - Overcharge|
|Phoenix - Fire Spirits||Phoenix - Icarus Dive|
|Phoenix - Sun Ray||Soul Ring (800) - Sacrifice|
|Techies - Suicide Squad, Attack!2|
1 Unholy Strength and Pocket Deny do not cause the user to lose health while invulnerable.
|Necrophos - Heartstopper Aura|
Deprecated Damage Types
The following damage types were removed in patch 6.82 to simplify the game mechanics.
Composite damage (also known as mixed damage) was a physical damage type that was reduced by both armor and magic resistance. It went through magic immunity and did not affect ethereal units. This damage type was used by Acid Spray, Wild Axes, Diabolic Edict, Summon Spirit Bear (the backlash damage), Land Mines and Suicide Squad, Attack!. All of them now deal physical damage, except for the backlash damage from the Spirit Bear, which is now pure damage.
Universal damage was a magical damage type that went through magic immunity, was reduced by magic resistance, and dealt higher damage to ethereal units. This damage type was previously used by: Pulverize, Doom, Echo Slam (initial damage only), Midnight Pulse, Laguna Blade (when upgraded by Aghanim's Scepter), March of the Machines, and Flaming Fists.
All of these abilities were reworked. These abilities: Doom, Midnight Pulse, Flaming Fists, and Laguna Blade (when upgraded by Aghanim's Scepter) all now inflict pure damage that pierces Spell Immunity. And these abilities: Pulverize, Echo Slam (initial damage), and March of the Machines all now inflict Magical Damage that does not pierce Spell Immunity.