21 + 2.9
17 + 1.5
18 + 2.4
Kaolin the Earth Spirit is a highly adaptable strength hero with great utility, able to effectively fill the role of a support, ganker, or offlaner, while still having a large game presence due to his strong initiation. Unlike most heroes, his abilities revolve around an innate ability, Stone Remnant. Because of Stone Remnant's synergy with his other abilities, Earth Spirit has an incredibly high skill cap, and can be challenging to master. He can be surprisingly mobile, owing to his Rolling Boulder, and can use this in combination with his other abilities to position himself to disable multiple enemies, save allies from certain death and generally become a commanding presence in a teamfight, even without a great deal of farm. With good timing he can initiate fights from a distance, and given the right circumstances can deal a surprising amount of damage to both single and multiple targets, all the while disrupting enemy positioning allowing for easy kills. A useful ally and a dangerous enemy, the Earth Spirit's versatility and flexibility make him an ideal hero in almost any lineup or lane.
Due to how flexible Earth Spirit is during the game the first ability would be situational. In level 1 engagements it is almost always advisable to skill Boulder Smash as it is Earth Spirit's highest damaging spell at level 1 and also offers the utility of providing an area stun or a repositioning tool to save allies or put enemies on a cliff, forcing them to buy a Town Portal Scroll if they don't have a way to get off already. However Rolling Boulder may also be required to be able to escape a level 1 gank from the enemy team. From here it is almost always advisable to get a point in all 3 of Earth Spirit's basic spells by level 3. Next, maxing Geomagnetic Grip by level 7 is usually the best approach to skill Earth Spirit as he gains a surpising amout of burst damage with his combos. At this point Earth spirit reaches his first peak. He has massive amounts of magical damage at this stage of the game and a long lasting area silence from Geomagnetic Grip combined with a slow from Rolling Boulder is usually enough to take down any hero or turn the tides of any mid game skirmishes and team fights. Next Earth Spirit should max out Boulder Smash to increase the stun duration, as opposed to putting any more points in Rolling Boulder as it only reduces cooldown, nothing more. At level 11, with 2 points in Magnetize, Earth Spirit's full combo is absolutely lethal to anyone it hits. Finally once Earth Spirit maxes out Rolling Boulder be sure to use it whenever it is off its very short cooldown in a team fight while the enemy are affected by Magnetize as it will slow everyone's movement speed by a crippling amount, if they don't have spell immunity.
- The actual cast range of the ability is 1300. However, this big cast range is only for aiming the Stone Remnants.
- To smash a Stone Remnant, Earth Spirit must stand within 200 range of it and target anywhere within the 1300 cast range. The remnant is smashed towards the targeted direction.
- When no remnants are within 200 range of Earth Spirit, nothing happens. The spell is not cast.
- In order to smash a unit, it has to be directly targeted. Earth Spirit then walks up to the unit and smashes it into the direction he approaches the target from.
- Stun is applied to all enemy units within the radius of a smashed Stone Remnant. A smashed unit is not and does not stun.
- Damage is applied to the targeted unit (if it is an enemy) instantly and to enemy units within the radius of the smashed unit or Stone Remnant.
- Targeted units are not disabled during the knockback. They are able to turn, attack, cast spells and use items.
- This means that it cannot be used to interrupt the target's channeling spells.
- Casting Boulder Smash on Power Cogs or a unit under the effect of Flaming Lasso damages enemies within the radius around the target upon cast, but does not knock it back.
- Can move units and Stone Remnants over impassable terrain.
- Destroys trees which the targeted units or Stone Remnant collide with during the knockback.
- Rolls at a speed of 800 without, and 1600 with Stone Remnant.
- Always rolls for the full distance (800 or 1600) when not colliding with an enemy hero.
- Upon colliding with an enemy hero, the rolling stops and Earth Spirit is placed 80 units away from them, on the exact opposite side that he collided into them from.
- Rolling over a Stone Remnant increases the total distance covered 1600 units, rolling speed to 1600, and adds the movement slow.
- Rolling over a Stone Remnant earlier or later in the roll does not affect the total distance covered, but it does affect the time it takes to get there due to the change in roll speed.
- Slow is applied to all units in the path, not just the hero it collides with.
- Rolling Boulder roots and disarms Earth Spirit for its full duration. Means he cannot blink or attack during it, but can cast other items and spells and can turn.
- Roots and taunts do not cancel Rolling Boulder ( Frostbite cancels it, because it applies a mini-stun).
- Does not affect invulnerable units and heroes. Cannot collide with invulnerable heroes.
- Can move Earth Spirit over impassable terrain.
- Destroys trees Earth Spirit collides with while rolling.
- Depending on when and where in the roll the Stone Remnant is placed, Earth Spirit moves at a net rate of 500 or 762-1000 ms.
- Rolling without a Stone Remnant moves Earth Spirit 800 units in 1.6 (0.6 + 1) seconds, resulting in a net rate of 500 effective ms.
- Rolling into a Stone Remnant 949-950 distance from Earth Spirit's initial location moves him 1600 in 2.1 (0.6 + 1 + 0.5) seconds, resulting in a net rate of 762 effective ms.
- Rolling into a Stone Remnant 0-150 distance from Earth Spirit's initial location moves him 1600 in 1.6 (0.6 + 1) seconds, resulting in a net rate of 1000 effective ms.
| Stone Remnant
- If a Stone Remnant is within 400 range of a Magnetized unit during one of the 0.5 second checks, it applies a fresh Magnetize to all enemies within 600 range of the Remnant.
- Stone Remnants are destroyed 8 seconds after spreading Magnetize. They can still be utilized by Earth Spirit's other spells meanwhile.
- Deals 25/37.5/50 damage and checks for Stone Remnants within range in 0.5 second intervals, starting 0.5 second after cast.
- Without any Stone Remnant refreshing the duration, Magnetize can deal up to 300/450/600 damage per affected unit (before reductions).
- Healing Salve and Tango are basic regen requirements in almost any lane that Earth Spirit is placed in.
- Clarity potions will help Earth Spirit to cast his spells more often to make a bigger impact in the early game, as he is limited more by his mana pool than by the number of Stone Remnants he has.
- Iron Branch is a cheap and effective way to improve Earth Spirit's stats, particularly his strength and intelligence, both of which are lacking in the early game.
- Stout Shield is recommended when playing in the off-lane, as it will significantly reduce the amount of damage Earth Spirit takes from enemy player harass.
- Boots of Speed are essential early on for Earth Spirit, as the improved movement speed will allow him to position himself more quickly for casting his spells. It is not absolutely necessary to upgrade them immediately, which can save you gold for other items.
- Magic Stick is a useful pickup when in a lane against heroes who are harassing you by spamming low mana cost spells. In particular, your low early mana pool means that you will greatly benefit from having an extra source of mana regen for casting your spells if you're in a pinch.
- Bottle is essential if Earth Spirit is played in the mid lane, but can also be a handy source of regen if playing as a roamer or off-laner. As Earth Spirit is very mobile and very active, a Bottle will give him health regen between ganks and fights, and the mana replenishment will recover a sizable fraction of his mana pool, allowing him to stay on the go.
- Force Staff has many uses for a hero like Earth Spirit, and can be built relatively easily as its components aren't that expensive. It can be used to position Earth Spirit's abilities, as well as escape from failed fights or ganks. It can also be used to save nearby allies if Geomagnetic Grip is on cooldown, or disposition enemies for your spells. It also improves his mana pool, always good on a strength caster, and the health regen helps keep him at full health as needed.
- Magic Wand is useful for the same reason as Magic Stick, as well as for the additional stats if you are not a core farmer on your team.
- Urn of Shadows is a good pickup on very active Earth Spirit players since he is very powerful in teamfights and ganks, and is a strength hero who can benefit from additional mana regeneration. The active ability can be used to heal teammates after ganks or teamfights, or can add an additional 150 pure damage to an enemy during a gank. Remember to check with teammates to see if any of them are purchasing one as well, as only one Urn will receive charges when a nearby enemy hero dies.
- Town Portal Scroll is an essential basic item that all heroes should carry at all times, but is doubly so on Earth Spirit. Because of his mobility and powerful disables, being able to show up quickly to a gank, counter-gank teamfight is critical.
- Arcane Boots are almost essential on Earth Spirit if no other mana regen items are built. As a strength caster, he benefits greatly from the larger mana pool, as well as the mana replenishment given upon activation. Arcane Boots also greatly benefit your team, especially if your allies are having mana issues.
- Veil of Discord is helpful if your team has multiple spell casters. It provides all-around stats for Earth Spirit, and the extra armor is very useful as he often gets right in the middle of battles when initiating. The 25% magic resistance reduction on enemies works well with all of Earth Spirit's spells, but synergizes best with his ultimate, Magnetize, as Magic Weakness' long debuff duration can stay in place throughout refreshing Magnetize on enemies.
- Heaven's Halberd is useful against the enemies which rely on their attacks. The disarm will render the targeted hero unable to attack, making most hard carries useless until the effect wears off. Heaven's Halberd will also give Earth Spirit extra health, attack damage, and evasion, all helpful for staying alive in fights.
- Pipe of Insight is useful in most situations, but especially against a team of casters. The extra magic resistance helps keep Earth Spirit alive during initiations, and the active protects all allies from magical damage for a short period of time. As well, the additional health regen allows Earth Spirit to remain out in the field for longer without having to return to base to heal.
- Heart of Tarrasque will massively increase Earth Spirit's survivability, granting him over 1000 bonus health and very fast health regeneration between fights which will allow him to start every teamfight or gank at full health. This survivability allows Earth Spirit to stand in the centre of fights, making it easier to deal damage with Magnetize. If all goes well, Earth Spirit can place more Stone Remnants, refreshing the duration of his ultimate with a much smaller risk of dying.
- Scythe of Vyse greatly improves Earth Spirit's mana pool, as well as giving him some overall attribute improvement. The ability to hex an enemy target is extremely useful, as it can disable a key target instantly and eliminate their evasion and ability to use items, giving you and your team time to disable them further.
- Blade Mail is a useful mid-game item that gives Earth Spirit many positive benefits. The intelligence shores up his small mana pool, the armor gives him survivability against physical damage, and the attack damage gives him more physical damage output which helps him farm late-game items more easily as needed. But most importantly, using the item's active ability while initiating can discourage the enemy from attacking you, giving you more time to cast your spells as needed.
- Shiva's Guard greatly increases Earth Spirit's physical survivability as well as the size of his mana pool. The active ability can be used in conjunction with initiating a teamfight with Rolling Boulder, as you can apply the blast to the entire enemy team almost instantly, slowing them down enough to catch them all with Magnetize.
- Blink Dagger is an extremely powerful item to purchase on Earth Spirit, as it will allow him to position himself much more easily for casting his spells and has a very short cooldown. As it costs no mana to cast, you can use it without worrying about not having enough mana to cast your spells.
- Mekansm improves Earth Spirit's already good armor and health regeneration, and is a good utility pickup for your team. Keep in mind though, it has an extremely high mana cost, more than any of your other spells, so it is necessary to increase the size of your mana pool first. If you don't, you may render yourself unable to cast your other spells after healing your team, or healing your team after pulling off your spell combo. Remember to check whether a teammate is going to purchase Mekansm, as a team only needs one.
- Aghanim's Scepter unlocks a new ability, Enchant Remnant, which greatly increases Earth Spirit's ability to disable enemies, save teammates, and initiate during teamfights and ganks.
- Earth Spirit is a relatively farm-independent hero, and can contribute greatly to ganks and teamfights with few to no items. He is best played as a utility initiator that can be useful without items but increases greatly in effectiveness with farm.
- Earth Spirit has relatively little single-target physical damage, and his spells require the use of Stone Remnants in order to be effective. As such, it is difficult to farm with him, so he should get his gold by being active and getting kills and assists in teamfights and ganks.
- Positioning is key with Earth Spirit; this hero is adept at initiating, counter-initiating and running down fleeing foes. As a support player you may want to have yourself positioned behind your core heroes so you can cast Geomagnetic Grip to pull them to safety in case they get initiated on. You can Boulder Smash away an enemy hero chasing you or your ally, or if you're too far use a Stone Remnant to stun them from a massive distance.
- Stone Remnant allows Earth Spirit to place a remnant within a certain radius of himself, and then use it in combination with his spells.
- Stone Remnants are key to enhancing the effectiveness of all of Earth Spirit's spells. They should be treated as a resource more valuable than mana, as while abilities and items exist to replenish mana, none exist to increase the number of Stone Remnant charges available besides waiting for them to naturally replenish.
- When casting your spells to farm or disable enemies in fights, remember that you can use the same Stone Remnant more than once. The Stone Remnant that you pulled to you with Geomagnetic Grip to silence an enemy can then be used to stun a distant target with Boulder Smash, or quickly re-position yourself with Rolling Boulder.
- Stone Remnants persist on the field for up to 2 minutes, and ignore pathing and collision. If you are short on Stone Remnants but have plenty of mana, you can recycle them by moving old Stone Remnants to more advantageous positions using your spells. As well, Stone Remnants left over from previous teamfights can be improvised if another fight occurs in the same area.
- Double-clicking on the command to place a Stone Remnant (when auto-cast is not enabled) will place a Stone Remnant directly in front of Earth Spirit. This can facilitate easier casting of Boulder Smash and Rolling Boulder, and give players more time to direct their attention at enemy targets as needed.
- Boulder Smash is a powerful utility spell that allows Earth Spirit to forcibly re-position a unit while dealing damage, or launch a Stone Remnant to stun and deal damage over great distances.
- A successfully targeted Boulder Smash with a Stone Remnant is one of the longest ranged and fastest moving stuns in the game. You can use it for a variety of effects despite its mediocre damage, such as canceling an enemy's teleport from a safe distance (e.g. a Naga Siren who has cast Song of the Siren, a Tinker with Boots of Travel or a Nature's Prophet hidden inside Sprout) or interrupting enemy channeling spells without endangering yourself, such as Death Ward.
- Keep in mind, Boulder Smash can be cast on allies as well as enemies, not just Stone Remnants. It can be used to help an ally initiate, or to forcibly displace an enemy in a direction favorable to your team. However, keep in mind that a Boulder Smash cast on a unit has a relatively short travel distance and will not stun any enemies in its path. It also will not interrupt the targeted unit, so it won't cancel channeling spells this way.
- When ganking or solo-killing a target, it is often beneficial to keep Boulder Smash in reserve in case the target attempts to teleport out. Earth Spirit has limited physical damage output and his spells lack immediate nuking power, so holding on to your stun can allow you to prevent the target from easily escaping after being initiated on.
- Rolling Boulder is a powerful mobility spell that allows Earth Spirit to initiate, escape, or simply re-position to cast his spells.
- Leveling up Rolling Boulder only decreases its cooldown, so it is best to only take one point in the ability in the early game for mobility, and spend your skill points on your other disables and nukes, which increase in damage and duration.
- When augmented by a Stone Remnant, Rolling Boulder increases Earth Spirit's travel speed and maximum distance, and inflicts a slow on the first enemy hero it collides with. Because the distance is fixed and the speed only changes upon hitting the Stone Remnant, it is best to place the remnant right on top of Earth Spirit, in order to minimize the travel time.
- By utilizing the delay on Rolling Boulder, it is possible to decrease the delay in executing a Remnant-augmented roll. Casting Rolling Boulder in the desired direction and then placing the Stone Remnant in Earth Spirit's path during the delay (remember that you can double-tap Stone Remnant), rather than placing the Remnant and then casting Rolling Boulder, can shave off time in the roll and allow Earth Spirit to execute the spell more quickly.
- Remember that Rolling Boulder allows Earth Spirit to move up and down cliffs and through trees, so you can use it to pass over normally impassable terrain. However, keep in mind that getting disabled during the spell's 0.6 second delay will interrupt it, so be very careful about using it when fleeing enemies with stuns and silences.
- When using Rolling Boulder to initiate on a target, good aim is absolutely mandatory. The boulder only stops when it connects with an enemy hero, so if you miss and overshoot, you may wind up in an extremely disadvantageous position.
- Remember that while you are rooted for the duration of Rolling Boulder, you may still use items (excluding Blink Dagger). For instance, Town Portal scrolls can be used without being interrupted, so they can be activated during the delay or roll, allowing Earth Spirit to start channeling an escape early and displace himself during the channelling.
- Geomagnetic Grip is an ally-targeted spell that allows Earth Spirit to pull a teammate or Stone Remnant to his position.
- Geomagnetic Grip has great utility in saving allies who are being ganked by the enemy, as it can pull them to safety over terrain and regardless of the direction they are facing or intervening enemy units. As well, it will silence any enemies within melee range of your teammate, preventing them from casting mobility spells to pursue.
- Remember that Geomagnetic Grip deals no damage unless a Stone Remnant is pulled. Therefore, if the aim is to deal damage, a remnant must be used.
- When using Stone Remnants to utilize Geomagnetic Grip's silence, remember that Stone Remnants have no collision boxes. Therefore if your aim is surprise, you can place the Stone Remnant in the enemy's fog of war (inside of trees, or on an elevated cliff) and then pull it to you to avoid alerting them when they see the remnant being placed.
- Magnetize gives Earth Spirit the ability to deal damage over time to all enemies affected by the debuff, and can be spread and refreshed with his Stone Remnants while spreading disables from his spells as well, making it very powerful in teamfights.
- While Magnetize's initial radius is limited, the debuff can be transferred to other nearby enemies via the use of Stone Remnants. Besides the damage it deals, the ability allows you to extend the effects of Geomagnetic Grip's silence and Rolling Boulder's slow to encompass the entire enemy team, greatly impeding them all while dealing heavy damage over time.
- Remember that you can refresh the duration of Magnetize by placing Stone Remnants near the affected targets. Try to time your remnant placements to maximize the damage, however also remember that your spells lose the majority of their effectiveness without Stone Remnants, so be sure to always have some in reserve.
- Keep in mind, any Stone Remnants that are used to spread Magnetize will disappear after a short duration. Try to use these remnants to fuel your other spells during your ultimate if possible, as they will otherwise disappear from the field. This can be useful for conserving Stone Remnant charges for use later.
- Enchant Remnant requires purchasing an Aghanim's Scepter. The spell allows Earth Spirit to turn any hero, ally or enemy, into a Stone Remnant to manipulate with his spells.
- Casting Enchant Remnant on an ally renders them temporarily invulnerable (through spell immunity as well), allowing you to save them quickly if they are being focused down, or it can be used to help them initiate by casting Boulder Smash on them to stun the enemy while simultaneously placing your teammate in the middle of their formation. When used against an enemy, Enchant Remnant disables them completely, allowing Earth Spirit to use them to fuel his spells in a teamfight, or place them in an extremely disadvantageous location with Geomagnetic Grip and Boulder Smash.
- Enchant Remnant is perhaps one of the best ways to easily remove an enemy hero from a teamfight by enchanting them and then using Boulder Smash to send them away from the fight, perhaps into impassible terrain or over into the jungle to force them to take a long way back into the fight. This can prove especially useful against heroes that need to be close by to properly utilize their skills (such as Razor's Static Link, melee right click heroes and the like).
- One powerful use for Enchant Remnant is singling out important enemy targets and then capturing and delivering them into your teammates' hands. Earth Spirit can get within range to disable an enemy, pull them to his location with Geomagnetic Grip, and then send them to his teammates with Boulder Smash. With a potential 2600 displacement distance, this can pull enemies completely away from the helping hands of their teammates.
- Keep in mind that Enchant Remnant can also be used as a regular targeted disable. If you have cast Boulder Smash recently to stun a target, and they are trying to teleport away, you can use Enchant Remnant to stop them in their tracks, giving them no avenue of escape.
- Earth Spirit's basic disable combo is: Stone Remnant near Earth Spirit > Boulder Smash the remnant at a target > Geomagnetic Grip the remnant. Knocking the remnant in a target's direction will stun them for a short duration, after which pulling it back before it leaves the spell's 1100 range will silence the target for up to 4 seconds and deal additional damage, rendering them unable to cast for a short time once the stun expires.
- When initiating for a major teamfight, it is best to use two Stone Remnants for the initial combo: place two Stone Remnants in your immediate vicinity, then cast Boulder Smash followed by Rolling Boulder. The knocked Stone Remnant will pass through and stun multiple enemies and come to a stop 2000 range away, while you quickly roll in and collide with the nearest enemy. Cast Magnetize at this point and then Geomagnetic Grip on the first Stone Remnant, bringing it close enough to spread the Magnetize debuff and silence all affected enemies. You then have up to 8 seconds to cast Rolling Boulder again using that Stone Remnant to apply a slow, and your remaining 4 Stone Remnants to refresh Magnetize's duration.
- Earth Spirit can benefit from purchasing other items not listed under Situational:
- Glimmer Cape is a cheap utility item can make Earth Spirit highly elusive and give him additional initiation power that augments his already strong mobility. The active can allow him to initiate invisibly, cloak himself for escapes when combined with Rolling Boulder, or give him strong magic resistance when jumping in during teamfights. It also allows him to do the same for allies, and synergizes with his ability to save teammates by pulling them from harm using Geomagnetic Grip.
- Eul's Scepter of Divinity can be useful to build in situations where farming a more expensive item is prohibitive. It improves Earth Spirit's mana pool and regeneration, ensuring that he will always have the mana to cast his spells, and the extra movement speed allows him to move into position for his spells more easily without resorting to using a Blink Dagger or Force Staff. As well, the active cyclone can be used to make yourself temporarily invulnerable while also dispelling debuffs such as silences, or instantly disable an enemy to set up your other spells.
- Solar Crest gives Earth Spirit strong resistance against physical damage. As a strength hero with innately high HP, giving him armor and evasion makes him harder to kill in fights, while the passive mana regen keeps his mana pool topped up. The active can be used on allies or enemies, giving Earth Spirit even more utility beyond his already potent disables.
- Lotus Orb protects Earth Spirit from targeted spells, or allows him to share that protection with allies. The item provides HP and mana regen, as well as armor and additional bonus damage.
- Crimson Guard is a useful utility item to pick up on Earth Spirit if the enemy has lots of physical damage output. As a melee hero the damage block is very effective, while the increased health pool makes him much more durable while initiating. The active will also allow you to give a large amount of physical damage protection to your allies, as even ranged heroes will get full damage block for the duration of the buff.
- Guardian Greaves can drastically improve Earth Spirit's survivability when initiating teamfights. When upgraded from Arcane Boots and Mekansm, it removes Mekansm's mana cost while providing Earth Spirit with a strong teamfight aura and a self-dispel to remove debuffs from himself.
- Earth Spirit, like Brewmaster, Storm Spirit and Ember Spirit, was a Pandaren in DotA. However, he was re-skinned to avoid copyright issues with Blizzard Entertainment, since Pandaren are a race of creatures in the Warcraft Universe.
- His innate ability, Stone Remnant, is called Stone Caller in DotA, and it summons an actual Rock rather than a Remnant. Its function and mechanics are just the same. It's still named Stone Caller in the npc files of Dota2.
- Earth Spirit's name, Kaolin, is a reference to a type of fine white clay of the same name.
- Earth Spirit's lore draws inspiration from the Terracotta Army, a collection of statues depicting Chinese emperor Qin Shi Huang Di's armies.
- Earth Spirit's quote "The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak" may be a reference from Matthew 26:41 in the Bible (KJV).
March 06, 2015 Patch
- [Undocumented] Fixed picking up another player's Aghanim's Scepter being undroppable and granting Earth Spirit his upgrade.
February 27, 2015 Patch
- Fixed Earth Spirit not moving in range when targeting a unit with Boulder Smash.
December 17, 2014 Patch Update 3
January 29, 2014 Patch, Update 3
January 09, 2014 Patch
December 16, 2013 Patch
December 12, 2013 Patch
November 15, 2013 Patch
November 14, 2013 Patch
- Added Earth Spirit.