Mercurial the Spectre is a melee Agility hero adept at dealing pure damage to lone targets, and is powerful both offensively and defensively. Spectral Dagger provides a significant amount of mobility, allowing Spectre to go through objects, units and terrain while slowing foes that come in contact with the shadowy path left by her Spectral Dagger. Desolate allows her to inflict high pure damage to enemy heroes when she catches them alone. Dispersion reduces and reflects all damage, whether by attacks or spells, to an area around her. Dispersion gives her great durability, especially when equipped with items that provide health, armor, and damage block. Finally, her Haunt creates a malevolent spectral illusion to all enemy heroes in the map. Haunt lets Spectre wreak havoc in clashes and ganks, while her allies take advantage of the confusion. Spectre can use Reality during the Haunt, instantly teleporting her to her illusion to take its form. This lets her hound her victim anywhere on the map. Mercurial is a dangerous supernatural being, relentless as she can chase and stalk down her victim to a global range, unhindered by boundaries. Her kit allows her to play the role of the team's hard carry by applying an immense amount of pressure in late game team fights. More specifically, the damage reflection from Dispersion makes it disadvantageous for teams to focus her. Her abilities have a complex nature, and newer players should generally not play Spectre as she is extremely farm and level dependent. It is best to face Spectre with allied help and strength, as encountering her alone isn't always the best option.
| Mercurial, the Spectre
| Play "Among the Transcendencies, you would be thought ignoble."
|| Carry / Durable / Escape
|| Just as higher states of energy seek a lower level, the Spectre known as Mercurial is a being of intense and violent energy who finds herself irresistibly drawn to scenes of strife as they unfold in the physical world. While her normal spectral state transcends sensory limitations, each time she takes on a physical manifestation, she is stricken by a loss of self--though not of purpose. In the clash of combat, her identity shatters and reconfigures, and she begins to regain awareness. She grasps that she is Mercurial the Spectre--and that all of her Haunts are but shadows of the one true Spectre. Focus comes in the struggle for survival; her true mind reasserts itself; until in the final moments of victory or defeat, she transcends matter and is restored once more to her eternal form.
|| Gin Hammond (Responses)
- The Spectral Dagger travels at a speed of 800 and cannot be disjointed.
- Can directly target heroes and creep-heroes. When targeting a hero, the dagger homes on and follows it until it reaches the target.
- When targeting the ground or creep-heroes, the dagger travels a distance of 2000 in a straight line. It does not home on creep-heroes.
- Every enemy unit which comes within 125 range of the traveling dagger gets damaged.
- Hit enemy heroes and illusions also start trailing a shadow path, like the dagger itself.
- The slow affects every enemy unit which gets on the shadow path, and sticks on them for 4 seconds when leaving.
- Spectre gains unobstructed movement while moving on the shadow path. This unobstructed movement lingers for 2 seconds after leaving it.
- The movement speed buff on Spectre sticks on her for 4 seconds after leaving the shadow path.
- The shadow path's segments last 12 seconds from the moment on they were created, not as the spell was cast.
- Desolate damage is a seperate damage instance and applied before the actual attack damage hits. This means it damages even when the attack misses.
- Desolate completely ignores nearby wards, buildings, invulnerable units and hidden units.
- This means that Desolate still deals its damage when the target only has one of the above as an ally nearby.
- Since it only checks for allies of the target, nearby neutral creeps do not prevent it from dealing damage either.
- The damage from Dispersion is flagged as HP Removal, so it does not trigger any on-damage effects.
- Dispersed damage is returned as the same damage type as it was received.
- The dispersed damage is not felt by Spectre, effectively reducing every incoming damage by 10%/14%/18%/22%.
- Increases effective HP by 11%/16%/22%/28%, and potentially reflecting that amount per unit.
- Reflected damage is not shared between enemies. All of them take the full reflected damage.
- The damage dealt decreases linearly from a 300 radius to a 1000 radius from Spectre.
- This is how much damage Dispersion deals to enemies at certain distances:
- 300 radius: 10%/14%/18%/22% of dealt damage
- 475 radius: 7.5%/10.5%/13.5%/16.5% of dealt damage
- 650 radius: 5%/7%/9%/11% of dealt damage
- 825 radius: 2.5%/3.5%/4.5%/5.5% of dealt damage
- Haunt illusions are selectable, but uncontrollable.
- The illusions have 400 movement speed and unobstructed pathing. Slows and movement speed buffs do affect them.
- The illusions start attacking their targets 1 second after being spawned.
- Haunt illusions do not spawn for enemy illusions, but spawn for every Meepo clone.
| Spectre exchanges places with a chosen Haunt.
| Cast Time: 0+0.7|
Cast Range: Global
|The scattered shadows unite into the one true Spectre.
- Does not disjoint projectiles upon cast.
- When targeting ground, spectre exchanges places with the closest Haunt illusion from the targeted point.
- Can be cast multiple times until Haunt ends or all Haunt illusions are dead.
- After swapping positions, the Haunt illusion still walks towards its target and attacks it.
- Spectre has a weak lane presence. Picking her requires a team that will largely be able to support her in the laning phase. Contrary to popular belief, she's actually a very solid damage dealer early on if you build her for it - 65 extra pure damage on each attack is nothing to scoff at. Phase Boots, Urn of Shadows, Orb of Venom, Drum of Endurance all help her fight early on.
- One of Spectre's biggest strengths as a carry is her ability to participate in teamfights and ganks instantly through Haunt without wasting valuable farming time.
- The shadow path left by Spectral Dagger lets her keep track on her prey. It also slows her target and enemies who came in to the path.
- It is generally a good idea to level up Spectral Dagger first to provide Spectre with extra mobility so that she is harder to pin down during ganks. However, be wary of its mana cost, as a single Spectral Dagger will typically consume half your mana pool per cast (in the early game).
- Maxing Desolate early is the best way to increase the effectiveness of Haunt. Maxing Spectral Dagger early, on the other hand, is also desirable as its level 1 offensive capabilities are almost negligible.
- It is sometimes beneficial to leave Haunt at level 1 in the early- and mid-game. Your illusions will not be strong enough to significantly benefit from an extra one or two seconds during skirmishes or team fights, and the extra points may be better spent in your other abilities or the Attribute Bonus.
- In late game teamfights, Haunt and Desolate will allow your illusions to wither down support heroes at the back at significant speeds. In addition, you should always be in the middle of team fights to maximize the damage reflection of Dispersion.
- Don't forget that Desolate only works if enemies aren't close together. If you're playing against a Spectre, make sure to hug your ally if she comes at you to reduce her damage dramatically.
- Spectre can perform as a viable solo offlaner by using Spectral Dagger to hide in trees before creeps meet in lane, allowing you to freely leech EXP off the lane with no risk of being killed, and quickly reach level six to gank with Dagger and Haunt.
- Mjollnir adds significant farming and push potential, while filling the AoE damage role of Radiance while also scaling better and having an easier buildup. However, illusions get no benefits from it.
- Eye of Skadi provides great general attribute bonuses, solves Spectre's mana issues, and gives her a slow that penetrates through magic immunity that allows her chase and forces attention on her. The early Orb of Venom and Point Booster give Spectre great early presence, also late game.
- Skull Basher adds some damage and HP along with BKB-penetrating anticarry and chase potential that again forces attention onto her.
- Pipe of Insight makes Spectre incredibly tanky against magic damage when combined with Dispersion (combined 59.05% resistance), and increases her teamfight presence with the HP regen and active ability.
- Armlet of Mordiggian has incredible synergy with Spectre's skill set. The HP and offensive bonuses work with Dispersion and Desolate respectively, which also transfer to her Haunt illusions. The passive regen fills the need of a Vanguard for her core, while armlet toggling provides increased HP for Spectre to disperse.
- Assault Cuirass adds extra durability and makes Haunt a global -5 armor for the duration while giving any teammates in range extra armor and attack speed. The attack speed has good synergy with Desolate, but does not transfer to illusions.
- The name Mercurial most likely comes from the DeviantART account of Kenneth Tan, the person who made the 6.28-6.32 loadscreen. 6.28 is also the version in which Spectre got released in DotA.
- "Mercurial" means "swift, shrewd, and deceitful", which is attributed to the Roman god of thieves, Mercury, as Spectre is an agile and quick Hero. It can also refer to the planet Mercury, since Spectre is an otherworldly entity. Mercurial can also hint towards the element Mercury, often called "quicksilver," which is another reference to Spectre's speed and mobility.
- Spectre's alternate/fun name "Qwerty-" was given to spectre for remembering a Legendary Dota player Zaven "Qwerty" Terminasov, who died on December 5, 2010.
- Spectre's voice responses are overlayed with the same track playing backwards, bearing a huge similarity to the Spirit of Vengeance's voice in Warcraft III: Frozen Throne, which is also the voice of Spectre in DotA.
June 14, 2013 Patch
April 19, 2013 Patch
- Fixed Haunt illusions moving while out of the game.
March 28, 2013 Patch
- Fixed a case where leaving and rejoining the Spectral Dagger path could cause Spectre to temporarily lose no-collision.
March 14, 2013 Patch
- Added a short grace period to walking off the Spectral Dagger path before collision is restored.
February 28, 2013 Patch
February 07, 2013 Patch
- Fixed Spectral Dagger sometimes creating invisible paths of targets it hit.
January 31, 2013 Patch
December 19, 2012 Patch
October 25, 2012 Patch
- Updated vision values on these abilities: Unstable Concoction, Phantasm, Waveform, Storm Hammer, Mirror Image, Spirit Lance, Requiem of Souls, Spectral Dagger, [ Venomous Gale, Earthbind, Dream Coil, Shackleshot, Wall of Replica, Flamebreak, Deafening Blast, Ghostship.
August 02, 2012 Patch
- Fixed being unable to Reality to a sleeping Haunt illusion.
May 24, 2012 Patch
- Fixed Haunt Illusions having collision.
May 10, 2012 Patch
- Fixed turn rates for the following heroes: Lifestealer, Alchemist, Clockwerk, Bounty Hunter, Dark Seer, Dazzle, Ancient Apparition, Brewmaster, Chen, Silencer, Lone Druid, Spectre and Spiritbreaker.
May 03, 2012 Patch
- Updated attack animation for Spectre, with more impact on hit frame.
April 12, 2012 Patch
- Fixed permanently losing the ability to block creeps after the first Spectral Dagger use.
February 16, 2012 Patch
- Fixed Haunt not working properly after a disconnect.
- Fixed Reality clearing Curse of the Silent and triggering Magic Stick.
November 17, 2011 Patch
October 27, 2011 Patch
- Fixed Heart, Urn of Shadows, and Dagger not being properly Disabled by Haunt.
September 23, 2011 Patch
- Fixed Spectre rising to flying height when walking on a dagger path.
August 06, 2011 Patch
- Fixed Haunt illusions not dying when their targets die.
August 05, 2011 Patch
- Fixed some size issues with Spectral Dagger.
August 02, 2011 Patch
- Fixed illusions not delaying 1 second before attacking.
- Desolation now happens when the attack is executed, rather than when it lands.
- Dispersion no longer works on ancients or Roshan.
July 29, 2011 Patch
- Gave path 500/500 flying vision.
- Heroes only trail the path for 7 seconds, not 12 like the dagger does.
- The path radius is now 150, rather than 125.
- The debuff should last for 4 seconds on enemies now, rather than 7.
July 22, 2011 Patch
- Fixed creeps trailing paths from Spectral Dagger.
- Fixed Reality being learnable at level 1, allowing you to cast Haunt.
July 08, 2011 Patch
- Fixed Spectral Dagger being dodgeable.
- Fixed Dispersion from working on Roshan Ancients.
- Fixed Dispersion not triggering damage events like Dagger and Potions.
- Fixed Haunting on enemy illusions.
- Fixed Haunt illusion movement speeds.
June 24, 2011 Patch
- Desolate no longer works on creeps.
- Fixed Blink Dagger's cooldown not being triggered by Spectre's Haunts.
June 17, 2011 Patch
- Desolate now fully works against non-hero units as well.
- Now reflects damage before any kind of reduction.
- Now reflects damage back in the same type as it was received, instead of always being pure.
- Reduced movement speed from 295 to 290.
- Reduced Haunt illusion damage from 40% to 30%.
- Spectral Dagger
- Increased movement speed bonus for Spectre and slow on enemies from 5%/9%/14%/18% to 8%/12%/16%/20%.
- Reduced projectile speed from 857 to 800.
- Reduced cooldown from 8 to 0 (so it can now be used multiple times durng Haunt).
- Reduced cast point from 0.3 to 0.
- Haunt no longer ends when Reality is used (Reality still replaces the targeted Haunt illusion though).
- Increased Desolate damage from 20/30/40/50 to 20/35/50/65.
- Undid melee hero collision change from 6.72c
- Melee hero collision size now reduced from 24 to 12.
- Increased attack range from 100 to 128.
- No longer spreads the damage evenly between all enemies within the radius.
- Now always deals the same damage, but gets weaker with greater distance
- Deals the full damage within a 300 radius, decreasing gradually until 1000 radius.
- Increased Desolate damage from 15/25/35/45 to 20/30/40/50.
- Increased Dispersion damage reflection from 5%/10%/15%/20% to 10%/14%/18%/22%.
- Reduced Desolate enemy detection radius from 400 to 350.
- Dispersion now spreads the reflected damage up on all enemy units within range evenly, instead of dealing the same damage to all.
- Reduced illusions' damage from 50% to 40%.
- Now has a 1 second delay during which they fade in before the images start attacking the targets.
- Rescaled Haunt cooldown from 150/120/90 to 120 on each level.
- Old Dispersion:
- Gives Spectre a chance to avoid damage and disperse it to an area around her. Has a minor stun effect. Can only disperse for as much hp as she has.
- Radius: 400
- Proc chance: 4%/8%/12%/16%
- New Dispersion:
- Causes any damage taken by Spectre to be reflected onto all nearby enemies.
- Radius: 600
- Damage reflected: 5%/10%/15%/20%
- Notes: The damage is not split. Every enemy takes the same amount of damage.
- Reduced Desolate enemy detection radius from unknown to 400.
- Reduced base agility and gain from 26 + 2.6 to 23 + 2.2.
- Increased base armor from -1 to 0 (total armor is now 3.64).
- Changed Desolate legacy hotkey from D to L (to preven conflicts with Spectral Dagger, which uses D).
- Reduced base attack damage from 36-40 to 23-27 (total attack damage is now 49-53).
- Reduced Spectral Dagger shadow trail duration from 20 to 12.
- Replaced Vengeance with Desolate
- Deals bonus damage that cuts through armor when attacking a hero that has no nearby allies. Works on illusions.
- Detection radius: unknown
- Damage: 15/25/35/45 (pure damage)
- Notes: When an enemy hero does not have any of its allies within a 500 radius around it, this ability will deal damage on each attack.
- Reality can now be cast on ground or through the minimap, instead of requiring to directly target a unit.
- Fixed some lag issues with Spectral Dagger.
- Dispersion no longer works for Spectre's illusions.
- Reduced duration from 4/5/6.5 to 4/5/6.
- Fixed some lag issues.
- Reworked Mercurial, the Avatar of Vengeance:
- Renamed to Mercurial, the Spectre
- Increased base strength from 17 to 19.
- Increased intelligence gain from 1.3 to 1.9.
- Reduced movement speed from 300 to 295.
- Increased base attack damage from 18-22 to 36-40.
- Replaced Phase with Spectral Dagger
- Spectral Dagger:
- The Spectre launches a deadly dagger that trails a shadow path. Deals damage to the targets in its path. Units hit by the dagger will also trail a shadow path. The spectre becomes phase (gains zero collision) while on the path.
- Cast range: 2000
- Effect radius: 125
- Damage: 50/100/150/200
- Movement speed bonus: 5%/9%/14%/18%
- Movement speed slow: 5%/9%/14%/18%
- Trail duration: 20
- Manacost: 130/140/150/160
- Cooldown: 25
- Notes: Can be cast on the ground or on a target. When targeting ground, the dagger travels a strait path for 2000 range, hitting enemies in its path. When targeting a unit, it homes the unit until reaching it, hitting all units in its path as well. Slows all hit enemies and also slows enemies which get on the shadow trail. Spectre is phased and has increased speed on the trail. Only enemies initially hit by the dagger leave a shadow trail.
- Old Haunt:
- Spectre haunts the target hero. The hero is frozen in fear while the illusion attacks. The effects of this are amplified if the enemy cannot see the true Spectre.
- Cast range: ?
- Hauntings: 3/4/5/5
- Duration: ?
- Manacost: 140
- Cooldown: ?
- Notes: Regular ability. On level 4, Spectre gains the Reality ability, which allows her to take place and replace one of the haunt illusions.
- New Haunt:
- Creats a haunting image beside each enemy hero. These images are uncontrollable, take 200% damage, deal 50% damage and each of them will attack only its pair.
- Radius: Global
- Duration: 4/5/6.5
- Manacost: 150
- Cooldown: 150/120/90
- Notes: Ultimate ability. Creats an illusion next to every enemy hero on the map. Spectre can use the Reality ability which allows her to take place of a selected haunt illusion. Reality as a 8 second cooldown.
- Old Vengeance:
- Whenever an allied unit near Mercurial dies, it releases an energy to damage its enemies as its last act of vengeance.
- Radius: 1000
- Creep vengeance damage: 50/75/100
- Hero vengeance damage: 200/250/300
- Notes: Ultimate passive ability. Places a buff on allies. When that ally dies, a projectile is lauched towards a random enemy unit within 1000 range of the killed ally. The projectile deals the damage and also mini-stuns the target. Damage source is Spectre. Direct Vengeance can be used to mark an enemy hero. For 30 seconds, it will be selected to receive all the damage, instead of a random unit.
- New Vengeance:
- Whenever an enemy kills a unit, it releases an energy to damage its killer as its last act of vengeance.
- Radius: 1000
- Creep vengeance damage: 30/45/60/75
- Hero vengeance damage: 100/200/300/400
- Spectre illusion vengeance damage: 50/100/150/200
- Notes: Regular passive ability. Places a debuff on enemies. When a debuffed enemy kills a unit, it gets instantly damaged. Damage source is Spectre. Only Spectre illusions can cause revenge damage, other illusions cannot.
- Fixed Vengeance triggering off of some dying dummy units of allied spells.
- Fixed a few Phase bugs.
- Phase no longer destroys trees within a 200 radius around Spectre upon ending.
- Haunt and Direct Vengeance now display a status debuff on the target.
- This ability got reworked into the current Dispersion in the 6.50 gameplay patch.
- Reflected damage is not felt by Spectre, effectively reducing the incoming damage.
- Reflected damage is not shared between enemies. All of them take the full reflected damage.
- This ability got replaced by Desolate in the 6.34 gameplay patch.
- The aura places a debuff on enemy units. If an enemy with the debuff on kills a unit, that unit will damage the killing debuffed enemy instantly.
- Whether or not denying allies while debuffed causes damage is unknown.
- The aura's debuff does not linger.
- Grants Spectre unobstructed movement, means she can move over cliffs, trees, buildings and units.
- This ability got reworked into the current Haunt in the 6.33 gameplay patch.
- Creates 1 haunt illusion for the target upon cast. This illusion lasts for 0.6 seconds, during which it attacks the target.
- 4-7 seconds later, the illusion re-appears for another 0.6 seconds, repeating until the target was haunted 3/3/4/5 times.
- The 4-7 interval timer starts at the beginning of a haunt, not at the end and only uses integers.
- During the 0.6 seconds of each haunting, the target is stunned.
- When the target has no vision over Spectre, the haunting and stun duration increase to 1.6 seconds.
- The illusion is used for each haunt interval. This means when the illusion is destroyed, it does not appear again on the remaining intervals.
- However, the stun is independent and does continue to occur for the remaining intervals.
- When Spectre or the target are dead upon the next haunting, the spell stops.
- This means if either respawn before the next interval is going to happen, the spell does not end prematurely.
- This ability got reworked into the following Vengeance in the 6.33 gameplay patch.
- The aura places a buff on allied units. If an ally with the buff dies, it releases a projectile towards a random enemy unit within 1000 range of it.
- The projectile travels at a speed of unknown and can be disjointed.
- Applies a 0.01 second stun on the target and damages it upon reaching it.
- Denying allied units does not cause the unit to release a projectile. An enemy must make the kill.
- The aura's buff does not linger.
- This sub-ability got removed in the 6.33 gameplay patch.
- Does not affect vengeance projectiles which were already flying to another target.
- The target receives a visual effect to inform them that they are the current target of Vengeance.
Spectre with old weapon model
- ↑ Playdota thread about hero name origins
- ↑ The loading screen from the artist Mercurial got her name from