Pudge the Butcher is a melee strength hero feared for his incredible gank prowess. Though he may not look like it, he is one of the strongest solo-killing gankers in the entire game, with one combo of his three active abilities proving more than sufficient to kill fragile enemy heroes in the early and midgame. His signature ability, Meat Hook, which requires intuition, precision, and good timing to land, is thrown out in a straight line a long distance away. If it snags a unit, it will drag it back to Pudge, dealing enormous damage to it if it was an enemy. It thus serves as a powerful ganking and initation tool, and also has the utility of being able to save an endangered ally. He can then follow up with his ultimate, Dismember, which deals further damage to the target over a few seconds, as well as disabling it. During this period, he can toggle on his Rot to damage his enemy further while hurting himself as well, and use it to slow and finish off the hero if he or she survived the initial assault. To supplement his killing power is Flesh Heap, which provides him some magic resistance to reduce the damage he takes from Rot as well as from other enemy spells. The scariest aspect of Flesh Heap though is that it provides him permanent Strength with every kill that he participates in, giving him the potential to permanently increase his vitality (and physical damage) to monolithic proportions, thereby becoming a formidable tank.
Pudge is a high health destructive tank that can finish off lone heroes easily and quickly. His first and trademark ability, Meat Hook, allows him to grab a solitary target, dragging it off to meet its doom in the ravenous form of the Butcher. One of the most iconic abilities of DotA, Meat Hook takes a vast amount of practice to perfect. It is also a hard ability to master due to its high versatility, like hooking for units hidden in the fog, hooking enemies with different movement speeds or pulling allied heroes out of potentially fatal situations. Pudge's second ability Rot is his primary source of damage over time, dishing out large amounts every second. Due to the first and second abilities, Pudge is a constant threat and distraction in the early levels, possessing one of the highest short term damage outputs in the game. Pudge's ultimate, Dismember, allows him to grasp a unit tightly and devour it, holding it within range of the noxious fumes of Rot. In mid to late game, Pudge's trademark combination includes hooking a foe away from its allies, Rotting and Dismembering. Pudge also has a passive Flesh Heap, which grants him both magic resistance to complement Rot and strength gain which is achieved passively upon enemy hero deaths in his vicinity. This hulking monstrosity is a force of gargantuan destruction in the hands of a competent player, and enemies may quickly find themselves unable to take on the behemoth with his enormously high health potential.
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- Meat Hook to Rot to Dismember is the standard combo.
- Meat Hook is hard to master but extremely versatile; it can be used to:
- Pull a fleeing enemy into a gank, or back into one if they blinked away.
- Pull a lone hero into your team to make any resulting teamfight 4v5.
- Pull an allied hero out of a dangerous situation.
- However, in case the enemy has some sort of AoE initiation ability (Echo Slam, Epicenter, Requiem of Souls, Sanity's Eclipse etc.), it's usually better to avoid hooking at all to start teamfight, lest you set up a perfect initiation for the other team. The reason is after you hook someone and your team converge on you to kill the target, you will act as a beacon for those abilities, especially if they have a Blink Dagger.
- An easy way to land a Meat Hook is to walk up to your enemy slow him with Rot and finish him off with a Meat hook, while they are slowed.
- Hiding spots and hooking positions: .
- Don't be afraid to use Rot to escape from a chasing melee hero. Toggle it quickly on and off to apply the speed debuff to them, with minimal damage to yourself.
- If you are Dismembering and have not used Meat Hook, make sure to not shift queue it because it can easily be dodged by running to the left or right.
- If you have Aghanim's Scepter and are low on health you can Dismember a creep to quickly restore a lot of HP.
- Blink Dagger can be bought on Pudge. If you hook a unit onto an unpathable ledge, the unit gains free pathing for 5 seconds.
- Pudge can use Rot to deny himself, committing suicide and preventing the other team from receiving gold and experience for his death; killing himself in this way does not, however, reset his killing spree, resulting in the other team receiving more gold for killing him if he continues his spree.
- Keep in mind that the range on Flesh Heap is relatively small. However, you will still gain a charge by killing a foe out of range if the final blow is delivered by Meat Hook (i.e. with Meat Hook damage). This is the only exception to the Flesh Heap range restriction, as you will not gain charges by killing enemies out of range with others methods, such as with Urn of Shadows or Dagon. Therefore, you should use these methods in last resort only, when impossible to last hit an escaping enemy with Meat Hook (because of mana or creeps blocking the path for example).
- Due to Pudge's gank-heavy playstyle, an Urn of Shadows is useful for providing health regeneration.
- A Black King Bar is also a frequent item choice, as it can prevent enemies from interrupting Dismember channeling, as well as preventing self-damage from Rot.
- Use Rot after casting Meat Hook if there is an enemy Rubick, as he can use the Hook against your team, who may not expect to be hooked at all.
- Cast your ulti while the enemy hero is being dragged to pudge with meat hook for a quick dismember.
- Pudge's line upon landing a hook on an enemy Play Play Play "Get over here!" is a reference to the character Scorpion from the Mortal Kombat, who also has a hook ability which pulls his enemy towards him. He uses the same line upon hitting his enemy with it.
- Pudge's line Play "Keep calm and carrion!" is a play on the World War 2 British Propaganda phrase "Keep calm and carry on".
- Most of Pudge's Dismember cast lines (Play "Fresh meat!") are a reference to The Butcher from Diablo, a title from Blizzard Entertainment, who also says Play "Fresh Meat" as the player meets it the first time.
- In DotA1, the exact same sound is used by Pudge upon casting Dismember.
- Updated model.
- Fixed some ability Backswing timing issues ( Kunkka, Clockwerk, Timbersaw, Meepo, Pudge, Spirit Breaker, Sand King, Riki, Nyx Assassin, Lion, Pugna, Shadow Demon, Batrider).
- Fixed being able to get units stuck using Refresher Orb
- [Undocumented] Updated Enchantress' and Pudge's textures.
- [Undocumented] Added new attack animations for Pudge.
- [Undocumented] Updated Pudge's model and textures.
- [Undocumented] Updated Pudge's textures.
- [Undocumented] Added teleport start and end animations for Earthshaker, Pudge, Night Stalker, Shadow Demon, Tidehunter, Tinker.
- [Undocumented] Added Haste Rune Run animations for Night Stalker and Pudge.
- Fixed a bug that was sometimes causing Dismember to do an extra tick of damage.
- Fixed a bug that allowed Pudge to deal damage without hurting himself by quickly toggling Rot.
- Fixed Meat Hook interrupting channeling spells if the target is spell immune.
- Added additional dialog for Earthshaker, Pudge, Storm Spirit, Shadow Fiend, and Doom.
- [Undocumented] Updated the hero selection portrait.
- Fixed bug with Pudge and Aghanim's Scepter.
- Fixed Dismember damage happening one second too late.
- Reduced the delay before being able to issue orders after Meat Hook.
- Fixed Meat Hook and Sacred Arrow not hitting Lone Druid's Spirit Bear.
- Fixed some abilities having incorrect durations against creep heroes (like Dismember).
- Fixed being unable to hook Nightmared targets.
- Made Meat Hook conform to terrain for more accurate visual read.
- [Undocumented] Pudge has a new animation upon getting a kill.
- Fixed Rot doing continuing to do damage after you die.
- Fixed cases where Meat Hook would drop the pulled target to a lower level if your target was near a ledge.
- Dismember channel will now correctly break if dispelled by Kraken Shell.
- Fixed Force Staff (and other forced movements like Meat Hook) not triggering Rupture damage.
- Changed Meat Hook to pull back units he kills with it.
- Meat Hook now properly gives 500/500 flying vision for 4 seconds at location where a unit is hooked.
- Updated Pudge's Icons.
- Made radius of Rot more static/representative of actual its radius.
- Made Rot debuff effect have a more distinct palette, with a hit effect and constant blood for recipients.
- Fixed toggling Rot (and item/ability toggles in general) not breaking invisibility.
- Disabled Blink Dagger for Vengeful Spirit and Pudge. Disabled Quelling Blade for Kunkka.
- Hooked up Pudge's new Rot animation.
- Fixed Meat Hook animation getting stuck on if Pudge gets interrupted before his action phase ends.
- Fixed Sacred Arrow and Meat Hook to not miss nearby targets.
- Fixed bug with spamming Rot, and adjusted its tick interval to 0.2 from 1.0.
- Fixed cases where creating a linear projectile directly on yourself would cause it to get stuck. This includes fixes to Fissure, Ghost Ship, Dragon Slave, Sacred Arrow, Earth Spike, Waveform, Illusory Orb, Meat Hook, Burrowstrike, Wave of Terror, and Powershot.
- Pudge's hook now interrupts the hooked unit.
- Increased Meat Hook max distance and cast range from 700/900/1100/1300 to 1000/1100/1200/1300.
- Can now use Blink Dagger.
- If a unit gets hooked onto an unpathable ledge, the unit gains free pathing for 5 seconds.
- Reduced Flesh Heap magic resistance from 4%/8%/12%/16% to 6%/8%/10%/12%.
- Increased Aghanim's Scepter upgraded Dismember strength multiplier from 0.75 to 1.0.
- Undid melee hero collision change from 6.72c.
- Melee hero collision size now reduced from 24 to 12.
- Increased Rot damage from 25/50/75/100 to 35/60/85/110.
- This means it will now track all enemy hero deaths within the radius, even when not learnt, and adapt the strength bonus based on its level.
- Reduced Flesh Heap radius from 525 to 450.
- Meat Hook
- Increased Flesh Heap enemy death radius from 400 to 525.
- Meat Hook
- Increased max distance and cast range from 400/600/800/1000 to 550/700/850/1000.
- Reduced cooldown from 14 to 14/13/12/11.
- Reduced manacost from 140 to 110/120/130/140.
- Flesh Heap reworked:
- Old Flesh Heap:
- Each unit Pudge kills grants him 0.03/0.06/0.09/0.12 strength if it was a non-hero unit, and 0.9/1.2/1.5/1.8 if it was a hero.
- Pudge has to make the last hit to gain the strength. Works on denies.
- Grants Pudge 4%/8%/12%/16% magic resistance.
- New Flesh Heap:
- Whenever an enemy hero dies within 400 radius of Pudge, or Pudge kills an enemy hero from any range, he gains 0.9/1.2/1.5/1.8 strength.
- It doesn't matter how the enemy hero died, if it died within 400 range of Pudge, he gets the strength. Does not work with denies or allied hero deaths.
- Grants Pudge 4%/8%/12%/16% magic resistance.
- Added Aghanim's Scepter upgrade: Adds 75% of Pudge's strength as damage Dismember and causes Dismember to heal Pudge for the damage it does (75/125/175 + 75% of Str).
- Flesh Heap now works with denies.
- Increased armor from -1 to 0 (total armor is now 1.96).
- Pudge can no longer get first blood for Rotting at start.
- Meat Hook
- Fixed bug that caused it to get erractic at long range.
- No longer bends based on environmental props.
- Can no longer hook wards.
- Reduced the cast phase during which Pudge is disabled from 0.5 to 0.4.
- Rot now slows affected enemies by 20%.
- Flesh Heap
- Increased Dismember cooldown from 25 to 30.
- Meat Hook
- No longer turns Pudge invulnerable during the 0.5 second cast phase.
- No longer bends based on Pudge's facing direction.
- Created (the current version of Pudge. The previous version was created in 5.10 and removed from the game in 5.62)