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17 + 1.9
14 + 1.6
23 + 1.7
Level Base 1 16 25
Health 200 540 1140 1840
H Regen 0.25 0.76 1.68 2.73
Mana 50 326 650 1046
M Regen 0.01 0.93 2.03 3.36
Damage 26‒35 43‒52 73‒82 108‒117
Armor -2 -0 3.71 8.34
Spell Dmg 0% 1.44% 3.16% 5.24%
Att / Sec 0.58 0.67 0.82 1.01
Movement Speed 295
Turn Rate 0.7
Sight Range 1800/800
Attack Range 575
Missile Speed 1200
Attack Duration 0.15+0.4
Base Attack Time 1.7
Magic resistance 25%
Collision Size 24

Io the Guardian Wisp is a ranged strength hero who works best as part of a communicative team. With its support-oriented skill set, Io is able to share its strength through Tether and Overcharge, harass enemy heroes out of the lane with Spirits, and materialize itself and an ally anywhere on the map with Relocate. Gank enemy heroes, push undefended lanes, save teammates from deep within enemy territory—the possibilities are endless, and Io features one of the highest skill ceilings in the game.

Io, unlike other heroes, does not need to be facing towards a unit in order to attack, use abilities, or items. It still has a front, marked by an arc-like effect, and a back.

Bio[edit | edit source]

Io Io, the Guardian Wisp
Role: Support Support / Escape Escape / Nuker Nuker
Lore: Io is everywhere, and in all things. Denounced by enemies as the great unmaker, worshiped by scholars as the twinkling of a divine eye, Io occupies all planes at once, the merest fraction of its being crossing into physical existence at any one moment.

Like the great twin riders Dark and Light, and yet another ancient traveler whose true history is lost to the ages, Io the Wisp is a Fundamental of the universe—a force older than time, a wanderer from realms far beyond mortal understanding. Io is nothing less than the sum of all attractive and repulsive forces within matter, a sentient manifestation of the charge that bind particles together. It is only in the controlled warping of these forces that Io’s presence can be experienced on the physical plane. A benevolent, cooperative force, Io bonds its strength to others so that the power of allies might be enhanced. Its motives inscrutable, its strength unimaginable, Io moves through the physical plane, the perfect expression of the mysteries of the universe.
Voice: Himself (Responses)

Gameplay[edit | edit source]

Abilities[edit | edit source]

Cannot be dispelled. Not blocked by Linken's Sphere. Partially blocked by Spell Immunity. Play
Tether icon.png
Ability Affects
Target Unit Allies / Enemies
Tethers Io to an allied unit, granting bonus movement speed to both. When Io restores health or mana, tethered units target gain 1.5x the amount. Any enemy unit that crosses the tether is slowed. The tether breaks when the allied unit moves too far away, or Io cancels the tether.
Cast Animation0.001+0
Cast Range: 1800
Tether Break Distance: 900
Move Speed Bonus: 14%/15%/16%/17%
Move Speed Slow: 100%
Attack Speed Slow: 100
Slow Duration: 0.75/1.25/1.75/2.25
Tether Duration: 12
Cooldown 12 Mana 40
Partially blocked by Spell Immunity. Cannot tether spell immune allies. Tether does not break if the tethered ally becomes spell immune. Cannow slow spell immune enemies. Slow persists if debuff was placed before spell immunity and when not dispelled.
The benevolent touch of Io brings strength from between the planes.


  • Has a Break Tether icon.png Break Tether sub-ability that lets Io break the tether while connected with an ally.
  • Tethering a unit that is 700 units or further away causes Io to latch on and pull itself with a speed of 1000 closer to the target (up to a distance of 300).
    • Can pull Io over impassable terrain and eventually get stuck.
    • Destroys trees within 350 radius around Io right after the pull.
    • If Io breaks the tether while getting pulled to the tethered target, the pull immediately stops.
    • The pull gets interrupted when Io is hit by another spell which applies Forced Movement, but not when Io is disabled.
    • If the pull gets interrupted more than 900 range away from the tethered ally, the link breaks.
  • When the distance between Io and the tethered target gets greater than 700, the link's visual appearance changes. At 700 distance it turns from teal to blue and at 800 it starts flickering.
  • The tethered unit benefits from Overcharge icon.png Overcharge, Relocate icon.png Relocate, and from Io regenerating or replenishing health and mana.
    • Tethered units still benefit from all those effects even when turning invulnerable or when hidden.
    • The health and mana regeneration is only applied to the tethered unit if Io's respective pool is not full.
    • Healing effects like Mekansm icon.png Mekansm are applied to the tethered unit depending on how much health was replenished on Io.
    • Mana restoring effects like Arcane Boots icon.png Arcane Boots are applied fully to the tethered unit if 1 or more mana was replenished on Io's mana pool.
  • An enemy unit may only be slowed once per cast of Tether.
  • If Io is tethered to an invisible unit, his enemies can only see a fake link leading to the invisible unit's last known location.

Break Tether
Break Tether icon.png
No Target
Break the link to the tethered unit.
Cast Animation0+0
Cooldown 1


  • Replaces Tether icon.png Tether until the Tether is broken.
  • The cast of Break Tether is not registered as a spell cast and thus does not proc any on-cast effects.

Cannot be dispelled. Not blocked by Linken's Sphere. Blocked by Spell Immunity. Play
Spirits icon.png
Ability Affects Damage
No Target Enemies Magical
Summon five particle spirits that dance in a circle around Io. If a particle collides with an enemy hero, it explodes, damaging all enemy units in an area around it. Creeps take minor damage from touching a particle spirit, but do not cause them to explode. When its duration ends, any remaining spirits explode.
Cast Animation0+0
Spirits Spawn Radius: 150
Collision Radius: 70
Explosion Radius: 300
Collision Damage: 8/14/20/26
Explosion Damage: 25/50/75/100
Spirits Duration: 19
Cooldown 20/18/16/14 Mana 120/130/140/150
Io twists the particles of the universe with his unimaginable capabilities.


  • Upon use, Io gains 2 sub-abilities to control how far away the spirits orbit.
  • 5 spirits are summoned over the course of four seconds, so that the distance between each spirit is equal.
  • The spirits complete a revolution every ~2.3 seconds regardless of distance from Io. (Their angular velocity is constant, meaning that spirits move more quickly when further from Io.)
  • When a non-hero unit comes within the 70 collision radius of the spirits, it takes the collision damage.
  • When a hero comes within collision radius, the spirit explodes and deals the explosion damage within 300 radius to every enemy.
  • All unspent spirits detonate simultaneously at the end of the duration or if recast, dealing the explosion damage to nearby enemy units.
  • Spirits provide 300 radius flying vision for 3 seconds at the location where they collided with a hero. They do not provide vision when exploding caused by expiring or recasting.
  • Unlike most other spells, the spirits are visible to the enemy even if Io is invisible.
  • Can deal up to 125/250/375/500 damage to a single unit when all 5 spirits explode on a target (before reductions).

Spirits In
Spirits In icon.png
Calls the spirits closer to you. Can be toggled on and off.
Cast Animation0+0
Minimum Distance: 100
Cooldown 0


  • Only active while the Spirits icon.png Spirits buff is on Io.
  • The toggling of Spirits In is not registered as a spell cast and thus does not proc any on-cast effects.
  • Does not interrupt Io's channeling spells upon cast.
  • Moves the spirits towards Io with 250ms. It takes 3.1 seconds from moving the spirits from max to min distance.

Spirits Out
Spirits Out icon.png
Sends the spirits farther away from you. Can be toggled on and off.
Cast Animation0+0
Maximum Distance: 875
Cooldown 0


  • Only active while the Spirits icon.png Spirits buff is on Io.
  • The toggling of Spirits Out is not registered as a spell cast and thus does not proc any on-cast effects.
  • Does not interrupt Io's channeling spells upon cast.
  • Moves the spirits away from Io with 250ms. It takes 3.1 seconds from moving the spirits from min to max distance.

Cannot be dispelled. Not blocked by Spell Immunity. Play
Overcharge icon.png
Ability Affects Damage
Toggle Self / Allies Pure (HP Removal)
Io gains bonus attack speed and damage reduction, at the cost of draining a percentage of its current health and mana per second. If Io is tethered to an ally, that unit also gains the bonuses.
Cast Animation0+0
Current Health & Mana Cost per Second: 4.5%
Attack Speed Bonus: 40/50/60/70
Damage Reduction: 5%/10%/15%/20%
Cooldown 2
Drawing on the energy of matter from all worlds, Io begins the unravelling of time.


  • Overcharge does not interrupt Io's channeling spells upon cast.
  • The toggling of Overcharge is not registered as a spell cast and thus does not proc any on-cast effects.
  • A tethered ally is affected by the damage reduction and attack speed, but only Io pays the drain in hp and mana.
  • Drains 0.9% of current health and mana in 0.2 second intervals.
  • Io and the tethered ally's effective health are increased by 5.26%/11.11%/17.65%/25% (This quickly diminishes for Io because of the health loss).

Cannot be dispelled. Not blocked by Spell Immunity. Play
Relocate icon.png
Ability Affects
Target Point Self / Allied Heroes
Teleports Io and any tethered ally to any location. After the spell expires Io and any tethered ally will return to their original location. Double-click to teleport to your team's base fountain.
Cast Animation0+0.53
Cast Range: Global
Effect Delay: 2.5/2.25/2
Duration: 12
Cooldown 90/75/60 Mana 100
Io is the embodiment of the mystery of the universe.


  • Double-clicking the ability automatically targets the team's fountain area.
  • If Io is interrupted during the casting delay, Relocate gets cancelled.
    • Can be cast while Io is rooted, but the teleport does not happen when still rooted after the delay.
    • Disabling the tethered ally of Io does not prevent the ally from getting teleported if Io successfully does so.
    • The returning teleportation cannot be prevented.
  • Indicators:
    • Enemies get a notification on their minimap during the teleport delay, showing them where Relocate was targeted.
    • Creates a visual effect at the targeted point during the teleport delay, which is visible to everyone.
    • Creates a visual effect at Io's position before the teleport happens, which also is visible to everyone. This one does not provide vision though.
  • Provides 300 radius flying vision at the targeted point during the effect delay.
  • Relocate interrupts channeling spells and every current order of Io and the tethered ally both on initial teleport, and when going back.
  • If Io is tethered to a unit, Tether icon.png Tether's duration is refreshed before and after the teleport delay.
  • Io may sever its tether at any time to prevent bringing an ally back.
  • Destroys trees within 300 radius around Io upon both teleports.
  • The Disablehelp option prevents an allied Io from casting relocating you.

Recommended items[edit | edit source]





Equipment[edit | edit source]

  • Io currently has no equipment.

Tips[edit | edit source]

  • Tether icon.png Tether can be used on allied heroes to get to their side with great speed, as it latches from a considerable distance.
  • Approaching a confrontation from behind will allow for easier use of Tether's slow. Positional items are also useful for this.
  • Spirits icon.png Spirits requires much practice and focus to control, and due to its high mana cost it is not advisable to use it frivolously.
  • Building Heart of Tarrasque icon.png Heart of Tarrasque or other health regen items will allow for much more liberal use of your Overcharge. Also, the regen you get from these items will heal your tethered partner, allowing you to heal allies by using Overcharge.
    • The same can be said with building a Bloodstone icon.png Bloodstone but regenerates mana instead of health which is useful to heroes with frequent mana problems. It can also be used in conjunction with other supports with healing abilities such as Witch Doctor icon.png Witch Doctor's Voodoo Restoration icon.png Voodoo Restoration
  • Remember that Tether icon.png Tether can be used on friendly creeps and summons, and in a dangerous situation Io may be able to avoid death by tethering to a lane creep, owing to Tether's large latch distance.
  • Should an emergency arise, Io may Tether to a wounded ally and then Relocate to the fountain to heal both Io and his ally.
    • You can also save the life of a crucial allied hero with this method, but it will often result in your own inevitable death when Relocate forces you to return to your original location. Be sure to break the Tether to your ally before you return.
    • The inverse of this can also work; Relocate from your fountain to the crucial ally and Tether them to bring them back. This is not always viable however, as it entails the 12 second discrepancy between Relocations.
  • If Io's team has an end-game carry such as Phantom Assassin icon.png Phantom Assassin or Faceless Void icon.png Faceless Void, his top priority becomes ensuring the survival of this hero at any cost, including his own life. Io's skillset makes him very good at doing this, and if Io succeeds in preserving the life of their carry, they will eventually become hugely powerful, and most likely win the game for their team.
  • A good way to make Io cause a lot of damage with his nuke quickly is to summon the Spirits, make them get closer, and when the cooldown has ended, get close to the enemy and activate the spell again. This way, all the spirits around you will explode damaging the enemy and five new ones will appear, potentially exploding on him too. This is used best when Io is laning with someone with a good slow or stun, and when used to maximum potential (exploding all 10 spirits at maximum level) can deal an enormous burst of magical damage.
  • When ganking or escaping, always remember that Tether duration is the same as its cooldown, so it can be maintained on constantly as long as you have enough mana.
  • Though using Tether to offer bonus healing from items such as Tranquil Boots (Active) icon.png Tranquil Boots or an Urn of Shadows icon.png Urn of Shadows charge is a good idea, your Tethered ally will not gain anything if you are at full health. Using Overcharge to lower your health before using any healing items will assure you are able to pass along the boosted regeneration.
    • However, for mana, it does not matter if Io is full or not. Mana will always be transfered, regardless of Io's mana status.
  • Soul Ring icon.png Soul Ring is an excellent Item if you have Tranquil Boots so that you can give your Tethered target health regen and also the mana from using the active of Soul Ring.
  • A Bottle (Full) icon.png Bottle is good for the same reasons as Soul Ring; healing yourself and your partner in battle, and as well as giving mana.
  • Techies icon.png Techies, Templar Assassin icon.png Templar Assassin, and Treant Protector icon.png Treant Protector (with Eyes in the Forest icon.png Eyes in the Forest) synergise well with Io; while not good heroes for Io to attach himself to (see below), all offer map control which combines well with Relocate. Not to mention the demoralizing effect of Relocating a Techies in range to Suicide Squad, Attack! icon.png Suicide Squad, Attack!.
  • Although highly irregular, a skilled player could greatly benefit from an Armlet of Mordiggian (Inactive) icon.png Armlet of Mordiggian. The passive health regeneration synergizes well with Tether and the bonus armor combined with proper armlet toggling can allow Io to survive several situations they otherwise wouldn't. The health drain from Unholy Strength can also be used to lower one's health without draining their mana as overcharge would. However, an Armlet should only be considered if someone on Io's team has already purchased a Mekansm icon.png Mekansm or if other conventional items would be less useful.
  • Invisible enemy heroes cause the Spirits to collide and sustain damage, but their invisibility will remain. This can help determine the location of nearby invisible enemy heroes such as Riki icon.png Riki's Cloak and Dagger as the collision is audible and location known.

Io Partners[edit | edit source]

The most common playstyle for Io is to be partnered with a Carry, preferably one with mobility or health regen issues (as Io can help make up for both). Although any durability-focused carry can benefit from Io's support, among the better known Io Buddies are:

  • Tiny icon.png Tiny, whose mobility issues are almost negated by the proper use of Relocate. In addition, Toss icon.png Tossing Io to an enemy while tethered will guarantee a slow, while his attack speed increase immensely helps Tiny's biggest issue, which is his very slow attack speed. Finally, his mana regeneration allows to become an extraordinary ganking force very early as Tiny's miniscule mana pool limits his presence early on. When playing with a Tiny, it is incredibly valuable to purchase a Vladmir's Offering icon.png Vladmir's Offering, since it increases Tiny's poor armor, scales very well with his base damage, and allows him to Lifesteal in fights.
  • Lifestealer icon.png Lifestealer, due to Infest icon.png Infest allowing Relocate to take three heroes, including Io (four with Aghanim's Scepter on Lifestealer) instead of two. (Nature's Prophet icon.png Nature's Prophet's Teleportation icon.png Teleportation is similarly useful.)
  • Chaos Knight icon.png Chaos Knight, whose Reality Rift icon.png Reality Rift can bring an enemy into the Tether slow.
  • Ursa icon.png Ursa, who benefits greatly by the mobility granted by Io.
  • Riki icon.png Riki, due to his ability to blink behind targets to trigger Tether slow while in Smoke Screen icon.png Smoke Screen. The attack speed bonus from Overcharge synergizes extremely well with Backstab icon.png Backstab.
  • Phantom Assassin icon.png Phantom Assassin, like Riki and Chaos Knight, can use her Phantom Strike to trigger Tether's slow. Overcharge also synergizes very well with her, making her more durable and allowing her to get more hits in.
  • Slardar icon.png Slardar, who has a terrifying presence with Relocate and can deal large amounts of damage in a short amount of time under the benefits of Overcharge.
  • Sven icon.png Sven immensely benefits from every feature that Io grants him; High mobility and mana regeneration to continuously cast Storm Hammer icon.png Storm Hammer and avoid kiting, higher attack speed to take advantage of Sven's intense damage (Particularly under God's Strength icon.png God's Strength, and higher survivability to go along with Sven's natural tankiness and appease his necessity to consistently be on the frontlines and thus be focused, granting him more time to do damage. Additionally, his stun is an AoE, meaning the player could stun AND slow multiple units at once with a well place stun.
  • Legion Commander icon.png Legion Commander's heal is very powerful when combined with Tether. Io's Relocate can be used to pick off lone enemies using Duel icon.png Duel. Overcharge will increase the damage done during Duel and also reduce the damage taken during it. In addition, its very easy to hit all Spirits/Tether slow when the target is stuck in a duel.
  • Morphling icon.png Morphling is paired with Io commonly in mid lane to make Morphling's life easier and allowing him to nuke down his opposition quickly and efficiently. The second way that Io is utilised with Morphling is by giving him a another escape on top of Waveform icon.png Waveform and switching to his Replicate icon.png Replicate; Io also gives him incredible attack speed and even more durability. Furthermore, Relocate allows the Morphling to have a greater global presence and allows him to split-push with increased safety.
  • Gyrocopter icon.png Gyrocopter is a nice partner that synergises well with Io since Io's Relocate allows you to gank opponents and nuke them down with Rocket Barrage icon.png Rocket Barrage, Flak Cannon icon.png Flak Cannon and Call Down icon.png Call Down. Furthermore, it gives Gyrocopter durability in the early and mid game which he lacks without an Io.
  • Juggernaut icon.png Juggernaut is a very nice partner for Io due to Healing Ward icon.png Healing Ward causing Io to heal Juggernaut for an extra 1.5 times the amount Io is being healed due to Tether. Also, when Juggernaut uses Omnislash icon.png Omnislash, Io's Tether will persist, allowing for an easy team wide slow due to Juggernaut jumping between the enemy team. This is especially effective if Juggernaut has Aghanim's Scepter icon.png Aghanim's Scepter.
  • Spirit Breaker icon.png Spirit Breaker, whose Greater Bash icon.png Greater Bash becomes more powerful with higher movement speed, and benefits from the attack speed increase greatly. His mobility also removes the necessity for the two to be on the same place to setup a gank, as Spirit Breaker can simply select a target with Charge of Darkness icon.png Charge of Darkness across any point of the battlefield, while Io can Relocate himself to the position.

Keep in mind that any heroes who can manipulate position such as Disruptor icon.png Disruptor would be a strong counter for this type of strategy

Trivia[edit | edit source]

  • Io is the name of a priestess of Hera in Greek Mythology. She was seduced by Zeus and subsequently incurred Hera's wrath.
    • Io is also the name of one of four Galilean moons of Jupiter, which was named after the same character in Greek Mythology.
  • Io's fun names in DotA were Weird Ball and Santelmo. Santelmo may refer to St. Elmo's Fire, a weather phenomenon that creates sparks of bright energy similar to that of lightning, mostly occurring from sharply pointed structures.
  • Enigma icon.png Enigma, Io icon.png Io, Keeper of the Light icon.png Keeper of the Light, and Chaos Knight icon.png Chaos Knight together represent the four fundamental forces of the universe with Io representing the electromagnetic force, as alluded to in his lore as the force that binds all matter together, as well as his abilities which mostly rely on being bound to a partner to achieve maximum effect.

Update history[edit | edit source]

March 24, 2016 Patch

  • Fixed Tether icon.png Tether buff duration being incorrect on the target when using relocate
  • Fixed Wisp Spirits icon.png Spirits not hurting Spirit Bear

February 17, 2016 Patch

February 04, 2015 Patch

  • Fixed Blinking while in the initial Tether pull causing the Tether range to be larger than intended.

November 18, 2014 Patch

  • Fixed the mechanism Armlet of Mordiggian (Inactive) icon.png Armlet of Mordiggian and Overcharge icon.png Overcharge to use proper health modification (meaning their health manipulation is now completely unaffected by anything).

July 18, 2013 Patch

June 14, 2013 Patch

  • Fixed Relocate icon.png Relocate not being interrupted if Io was only disabled in the cast time but not when the teleportation happened.
  • Fixed Relocate icon.png Relocate not getting interrupted by Root debuffs (Ensnare icon.png Ensnare, Overgrowth icon.png Overgrowth, etc).
  • Fixed Relocate icon.png Relocate not revealing Fog of War for enemies.
  • Fixed Relocate icon.png Relocate not showing the initial visual effect on the ground for enemies (only showed ping).
  • Fixed being able to return creeps with Relocate icon.png Relocate by Tether icon.png Tethering a creep after relocating.
  • Fixed Overcharge icon.png Overcharge missing a 2 second toggle cooldown.

March 28, 2013 Patch

  • Wisp name change to Io icon.png Io.
  • [Undocumented] Io icon.png Io changed back to blue from teal.

March 21, 2013 Patch

March 14, 2013 Patch

  • Fixed Tether icon.png Tether sometimes ending prematurely if Relocate icon.png Relocate was cast before Tether icon.png Tether.
  • Fixed Relocate icon.png Relocated units sometimes walking away to do a previous order.

December 06, 2012 Patch

November 08, 2012 Patch

September 21, 2012 Patch

August 02, 2012 Patch

July 19, 2012 Patch

July 12, 2012 Patch

July 05, 2012 Patch

June 28, 2012 Patch

Balance changelog[edit | edit source]


  • Reduced Tether icon.png Tether movement speed bonus from 17% on each level to 14%/15%/16%/17%.


  • Relocate icon.png Relocate double click now teleports to fountain.


  • No longer requires turning to perform any actions.





  • Increased Overcharge icon.png Overcharge health/mana cost over time from 2.5% to 3.5%.
  • Tether icon.png Tether regeneration transfer now heals the Tethered unit at 1.5x the rate of Io.



  • Increased Base attack damage increased from 16-25 to 26-35 (total damage is now 43-52).
  • Increased Attack range from 525 to 575.
  • Tether icon.png Tether
    • Reduced Movement speed bonus from 15%/20%/25%/30% to 20%.
    • Rescaled Stun duration from 1/1.25/1.5/1.75 to 0.75/1.25/1.75/2.25.
  • Spirits icon.png Spirits
    • Oscillation subabilities no longer interrupt Io's movement.
    • Now circle slightly faster when there are fewer alive.
    • No longer slow.
    • Increased spirits duration increased from 16 to 19.
    • Reduced spawn interval from 1.2 to 0.8 (all 5 spirits now spawn within 4 seconds, instead of 6).
  • Overcharge icon.png Overcharge
    • Reduced attack speed bonus from 60/80/100/120 to 40/50/60/70.
    • now also grants 5%/10%/15%/20% incoming damage reduction towards all damage types.
    This effect also transfers to the tethered ally.Reworked:



  • Reduced Tether icon.png Tether Stun duration from 1.25/1.5/1.75/2.0 to 1/1.25/1.5/1.75.
  • Increased Relocate icon.png Relocate cooldown from 80/60/40 to 90/75/60.



  • Created.

Gallery[edit | edit source]

See also[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]