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Anti-Mage/Guide

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Strategy
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Gameplay[edit]

Playstyle
Anti-Mage minimap icon.png Anti-Mage is one of the most mobile carries in the game, mostly well known for his ability to punish lineups heavily reliant on magic damage with Counterspell's high magic resistance, and his Mana Void can be used to cause massive damage to heroes with huge mana pools. His Blink makes him one of the fastest farmers in the game, with the ability to jump from creep camp to creep camp and quickly clear them with few items. Anti-Mage is, however, incredibly reliant on items to unlock his true potential, and he has an incredibly low strength gain. In addition, he has no solid disables.
Pros Cons
  • Extremely mobile and hard to catch.
  • High attack speed and farming speed.
  • Scales well into late game.
  • Punishes heroes who rely on mana.
  • Low strength gain.
  • Reliant on Battle Fury to farm.
  • Very reliant on farm to scale.
  • Needs a decent support in lane to get good farm.
  • Easy to be shut down in the early game.
  • Weak against gankers that disable if overextended.
  • Countered by heroes who aren't 100% dependent to mana, such as Huskar minimap icon.png Huskar.

Carry[edit]

The main role of a safelane Anti-Mage is to farm a Battle Fury icon.png Battle Fury as quickly as possible and then start farming up bigger items. As soon as Anti-Mage get his Battle Fury icon.png Battle Fury he should start flash farming with his Blink, switching between lanes and jungle camps while split pushing around the map. At this point Anti-Mage should focus on forcing the enemy to rotate and defend against his splitpush or taking towers that aren't being defended.

The main problem with this playstyle is forcing your team to take fights 4 versus 5, while you are off either farming your Battle Fury icon.png Battle Fury or farming bigger items like Manta Style icon.png Manta Style or Butterfly icon.png Butterfly. If Anti-Mage gets shut down too hard or if you play against heavy early push heroes like Lycan minimap icon.png Lycan or Undying minimap icon.png Undying the game can be over before Anti-Mage get enough items to fill his needed role.

Ability Builds[edit]

Generic Anti-Mage
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Blink (Anti-Mage) icon.pngMana Break icon.pngCounterspell icon.pngBlink (Anti-Mage) icon.pngBlink (Anti-Mage) icon.pngMana Void icon.pngBlink (Anti-Mage) icon.pngMana Break icon.pngMana Break icon.pngTalent icon.pngMana Break icon.pngMana Void icon.pngCounterspell icon.pngCounterspell icon.pngTalent icon.pngCounterspell icon.pngUnknown icon.pngMana Void icon.pngTalent icon.pngTalent icon.png

Talents[edit]

Hero Talents
-50s Mana Void Cooldown25+25% Counterspell Magic Resistance
-2.5s Blink Cooldown20 Blink Uncontrollable Illusion
+15 Agility attribute symbol.png Agility15+400 Blink Cast Range
+20 Attack Speed10+13 Strength attribute symbol.png Strength
Notes:

Tips & Tactics[edit]

General[edit]

  • You are useless in team fights if you can't physically attack enemies. There are many ways to counter raw physical damage, especially if it's melee. Decent players will buy items like Scythe of Vyse icon.png Scythe of Vyse, Blade Mail icon.png Blade Mail and Ghost Scepter icon.png Ghost Scepter to shut you down. Timing your entrance into the battle is everything for you.
  • Do not pick Anti-Mage if your team picks farmers such as Shadow Fiend minimap icon.png Shadow Fiend, Enigma minimap icon.png Enigma, or Tinker minimap icon.png Tinker.
  • If you find yourself being killed quickly a Vitality Booster icon.png Vitality Booster provides 250 health and can be later built into a Heart of Tarrasque icon.png Heart of Tarrasque. Generally, it is advisable to get a faster Manta Style icon.png Manta Style.
  • A quick Battle Fury icon.png Battle Fury will greatly increase your farming ability which will greatly help later in the game.
  • Don't only farm the jungle. If the enemy is pushing Anti-Mage can push a different lane solo with a reliable escape mechanism with Blink and Town Portal Scroll icon.png Town Portal Scroll and can indirectly defend by forcing the enemy to defend. It will require at least 1 core to respond to kill you generally giving your team a huge advantage if you TP back home to fight.
  • Be very wary of heroes like Shadow Demon minimap icon.png Shadow Demon, Dark Seer minimap icon.png Dark Seer and Morphling minimap icon.png Morphling, as illusions created from you carry the Mana Break spell as well, and combined with Anti-Mage's high agility, could easily turn the tides of a teamfight.
  • Once you get full slotted you could opt to sell your Battle Fury icon.png Battle Fury for a different item, but its creep clearing abilities are still very useful and sometimes critical. You should sell it if you absolutely need another item that can turn the tides, such as a Monkey King Bar icon.png Monkey King Bar.
  • Many players are tempted to switch Power Treads icon.png Power Treads to agility, but given your low strength gain, it may be better to keep them on strength if you are not jungling.
  • If under a lot of harass in lane, it can be worth it to get a Ring of Regeneration on top of your Ring of Health and later use that to build a Vladmir's Offering icon.png Vladmir's Offering. The item allows Anti-Mage to solo Roshan and also farm at full health while also being able to jungle ancients efficiently.
  • It can be a good idea to finish a hero with your ultimate, even if you could easily kill with an attack. Chances are a hero you focused is running low on mana and its team trying to save would come in close enough for your ultimate to hit quite a few enemies.
  • Even with Black King Bar icon.png Black King Bar, you should avoid being an initiator and instead bide your time until you can exploit a weak spot in the enemy's formation after a team fight starts, usually in the back lines where the supports are. This is especially important if the enemy carry is on the front lines with a BKB, which is a fight you will almost never win head on.
  • Even though you have poor strength gain, your starting strength and armor is actually very decent. Couple that with your naturally fast attack speed and a single point in mana break makes you very strong in trading hits.
  • With the above tip in mind against some common offlane heroes like Windranger minimap icon.png Windranger and Mirana minimap icon.png Mirana who try to harass you it's a good idea to constantly blink on them to trade hits as early as you're level 2, rather than simply withstanding harass. Setting the pace for the laning is critical to how fast you farm later in the game.
  • Your laning phase is an absolute nightmare. Many heroes can cripple your early game by harassing you and chasing you away. Also, if you don't utilize your laning phase the game may well end before you reach Anti-Mage's maximum potential. Ask your teammates to babysit you.
  • Anti-Mage has relatively low base health. If you can't kill an enemy quickly, it may be best to disengage, as an unfavorable fight can easily result in your own death.

Abilities[edit]

Mana Break[edit]

  • Mana Break is effective against heroes with low mana pools, as you can deplete them in less time. However, this also means that Mana Void will do significantly less damage when deployed as its damage is reliant on the mana pool's maximum size.
    • Take note that heroes with small mana pool also potentially take much less damage from Mana Break since they are emptied so quickly, preventing the mana burn from further contributing to the Anti-Mage's potential damage.
  • Manta Style icon.png Manta Style is a commonly built item on Anti-Mage as your illusions can also apply Mana Break, tripling the ability's effectiveness. It also provides an increase to all attributes and a means to remove most disables, especially silences, that could prevent escaping via blink.
  • The damage from Mana Break is dealt as physical damage. As such, deliberately reducing your opponent's armor will increase the damage that Mana Break does.
  • Unlike most passive attack modifiers, Mana Break does not bypass spell immunity.

Blink[edit]

  • Blink is the most common choice for your first ability point, as its immediate benefit is better than either of your passives. Put some points into Counterspell if you are facing strong opponents or go for Mana Break if you want to be aggressive.
  • Never use Blink to start a fight unless you know you can win it. Doing so could leave you stranded in a bad situation.
  • Blink is a very versatile and powerful mobility tool. You can also use it to chase, maneuver, or to avoid spells during battles.
  • Relative to Anti-Mage's mana pool, Blink is somewhat costly in terms of mana. As such, you should refrain from freely employing the spell in the early stages of the game unless you have intelligence and mana boosting items to supplement your low base intelligence.

Counterspell[edit]

  • While Counterspell provides substantial magic resistance, it is not a substitute for spell immunity as it does not block non-damage effects of enemy magic.
    • Additionally, spells and abilities that deals physical and pure damage will completely bypass the bonus bestowed by Counterspell.
  • Against an enemy lineup that consist of almost entirely physical damage dealers, Counterspell can be considered as redundant and should be leveled up last in such a situation.
    • Likewise, if you're against a spell and nuke heavy opposition, you may need to spend some early points in Counterspell to negate and reduce some of the potential spell damage.
  • As Counterspell has no cast point, Anti-Mage should wait to use it when enemies are playing their abilities' cast animation.
  • Use Counterspell to cover Blink's cast animation when escaping.
  • More tips needed.

Mana Void[edit]

  • Mana Void is difficult to use to full effect. Constantly check enemies with large mana pools. Use it on enemy casters after they have used their abilities and burned most of their mana. It can absolutely devastate an enemy team if used properly. Note that it does have a short stun, allowing you to cancel spell casts and channels.
  • Mana Void partially bypasses spell immunity as the damage is dealt in an area even if the primary target becomes spell immune, so while the main target will not take any damage, enemies around the radius will take full damage from the spell based on the mana loss of the primary target.
  • Mana Void will apply a stun that pierces spell immunity to the main target. This can be used to disrupt channeling spells and abilities.

Items[edit]

Starting items:

  • Tango icon.png Tango provides Anti-Mage with health regeneration in the early game.
  • Healing Salve icon.png Healing Salve gives Anti-Mage a massive boost of health restoration.
  • Iron Branch icon.png Iron Branch gives Anti-Mage an additional attribute boost in the lane, and builds into Magic Wand icon.png Magic Wand.

Early game:

  • Quelling Blade icon.png Quelling Blade provides bonus damage against creeps to help Anti-Mage get last hits. It builds into and stacks with Battle Fury.
  • Boots of Speed icon.png Boots of Speed give Anti-Mage a speed boost which can be helpful for getting around.
  • Magic Stick icon.png Magic Stick is a good idea to pick up if the enemy is using a lot of spells since that gives Anti-Mage a lot of regeneration in case of emergency.
  • Ring of Health icon.png Ring of Health provides Anti-Mage with decent health regeneration in the early game, and later builds into Battle Fury icon.png Battle Fury.

Mid game:

  • Power Treads icon.png Power Treads provide Anti-Mage with attack speed and attributes switch, keeping him alive with strength, or sustaining his abilities usage with intelligence.
  • Magic Wand icon.png Magic Wand provides Anti-Mage with more attributes and good HP and mana regeneration if the enemy is using a lot of spells.
  • Battle Fury icon.png Battle Fury provides Anti-Mage with HP and mana regeneration, and gives Anti-Mage a cleave that allows Anti-Mage to farm faster and push faster.
  • Manta Style icon.png Manta Style provides attributes that benefit Anti-Mage well. The illusions benefit from Mana Break, greatly improving Anti-Mage damage, pushing potential and mana-burning capabilities. Additionally, the split allows Anti-Mage to dodge and remove spell effects, which can be useful in combat or when escaping.

Late game:

  • Abyssal Blade icon.png Abyssal Blade gives Anti-Mage a damage boost, a chance to bash enemies when attacking, and a guaranteed stun that goes through spell immunity. It also gives Anti-Mage a small amount of strength and health that will increase his health pool.
  • Butterfly icon.png Butterfly offers a very substantial damage boost as Anti-Mage is an agility hero, it also gives Anti-Mage armor, evasion, and additional attack speed on top of the attack speed gained from the agility on the item.

Situational items:

  • Black King Bar icon.png Black King Bar grants spell immunity so Anti-Mage can attack without worrying about enemy disables.
  • Satanic icon.png Satanic increases strength, status resistance, and lifesteal, giving Anti-Mage much more survivability.
  • Heart of Tarrasque icon.png Heart of Tarrasque provides an ultimate tankiness boost so that Anti-Mage can lead pushes and manfight the enemies in the late game.
  • Eye of Skadi icon.png Eye of Skadi grants a lot of attributes, particularly increasing the mana pool so that Manta Style and Mana Void can be used more often. It can also be considered as an alternative to Abyssal Blade if its slow is enough to disable particular enemy heroes (i. e. if particular enemy heroes lack escapes and rely on keeping a good position or high movement speed).