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|Bounty Hunter is a strong utility support hero who helps his team by picking off the enemy one by one, increasing gold gain for his team and giving them opportunities to take map objectives while they outnumber the enemy. However, he is also very vulnerable since his low strength means that he can be easily killed if the enemy catches him while he approaches a target, particularly due to his reliance on Shadow Walk. As such, good judgment and map awareness are key when playing Bounty Hunter, as he must be able to successfully initiate on and kill his targets without the enemy retaliating.|
|Generic Bounty Hunter|
|+300 Track Gold||25||50% Evasion|
|+125% Jinada Critical Strike||20||+75 Shuriken Toss Damage|
|+350 Health||15||+50 Attack Speed|
|+25% XP Gain||10||+30 Movement Speed|
Tips & Tactics
- One small advantage that Bounty Hunter possesses over other heroes is that he has 1000 night vision instead of the standard 800. This makes Bounty Hunter a powerful night hunter, as he can spot targets at night who cannot see him, and cast Track on them from the Fog of War.
- In general, it is wise to check the enemy's inventory any time they appear on the map, and be aware of all enemy players' positions on the map. Knowing if the enemy may place Sentry Wards to give warning of your approach, as well as if they have Dust of Appearance or Gem of True Sight, can save your life as you can prevent yourself from walking into a trap. Additionally, knowing that certain enemies are on another part of the map will allow you to kill your target in the knowledge that their allies cannot reach them in time.
- When playing Bounty Hunter, it is important to stay off the map as much as possible once the laning stage ends. Keep the enemy guessing on where you are, so that they second-guess their decision to farm their own jungle, or push a lane too far forward, or go to any part of the map by themselves, for fear of being found and killed by you and your teammates. By doing so, you can destroy the enemy's economy as they will be too preoccupied worrying about you and not be spending time farming, giving your team space to out-farm them and get a strong gold and level advantage.
- Bounty Hunter is best played as an off-laner or roamer.
- As an off-laner, Bounty Hunter should attempt to block the enemy's pull camp so that he can get last-hits closer to his tower, and use Shadow Walk to sap experience if needed. As well, using an Observer Ward to block the enemy's pull camp can, depending on the ward's specific location, alert you to any incoming rotations by the enemy's supports, or let you see if the enemy is ferrying detection items to themselves with their courier in order to counter Shadow Walk.
- As a roamer, Bounty Hunter should generally focus on helping out in ganks by using Shadow Walk to approach an enemy who gets out of position during laning, adding his damage output to gank attempts. While he lacks contribution besides his right-clicks and body-blocking at level 1, once he has a level or two he can add his skills to the mix.
- Early play with Bounty Hunter can allow him to snipe the enemy's courier from invisibility, under optimal circumstances. As he can wait for the enemy's courier invisibly with Shadow Walk, he can choose to kill it as it approaches the enemy's mid to deliver their Bottle, or snipe it as it tries to ferry detection items to their safe lane supports. However, it requires good game sense and map awareness to know where the courier might appear, so this tactic is only viable at higher levels of gameplay.
- Shuriken Toss is a ranged damage nuke that mini-stuns its target upon impact. It will also bounce between enemies that have been affected by Track.
- As it is Bounty Hunter's only ranged nuke, maxing Shuriken Toss as his first spell increases his nuking power and allows him to more easily finish off enemies during ganks. The nuking power is strongest in the early game when HP pools are small and all heroes are more vulnerable to magic nukes.
- Remember that Shuriken Toss mini-stuns the target upon impact, so it is better to hold it in reserve until the enemy uses a channeling spell or activates their Town Portal Scroll. While it does have a short cooldown, the channeling time on a Town Portal Scroll is even shorter.
- When using Shuriken Toss alongside Track to inflict damage to multiple enemy heroes in a teamfight, remember that the initial target does not have to be affected by Track in order for it to bounce. This allows Bounty Hunter to throw the shuriken at an un-Tracked target and it will bounce to any Tracked heroes within range. Using this tactic can be useful for increasing your damage output if you do not have time to cast Track on all enemy heroes before using the shuriken, or for increasing the shuriken's maximum range to 1600 by tossing it at a creep and closing the remainder of the distance from the bounce.
- Be careful about approaching targets to cast Shuriken Toss on them, as its short cast range may put you in unnecessary danger. If possible, try to Track the target first, and use a nearby creep as a target to bounce the shuriken from a safer range. Remember that you can also use the bounce to catch a fleeing enemy hero who would otherwise be outside of its 400 cast range.
- Jinada is a powerful damage ability that gives Bounty Hunter the ability to inflict critical strikes at will.
- Due to its scaling, Jinada is best to max out last among Bounty Hunter's skills, as its damage output is minimal in the early game before Bounty Hunter has enough gold to purchase damage items to boost its power. However, it is also wise to take a single value point in the laning stage due to the slow it inflicts on its target.
- Because Jinada's crit is guaranteed every time it is off cooldown but cannot proc otherwise, its effectiveness increases with more damage but not attack speed. Bounty Hunter is best served building raw damage items, as attack speed does not help Jinada to proc more frequently.
- Jinada's slow is a powerful disabling ability, particularly when combined with the guaranteed critical strike and augmented with the surprise of Shadow Walk. Using both abilities in tandem during a gank can deal a large amount of damage to a target and then slow them for allies to close in.
- When going for the level 25 Talent that reduces Jinada's cooldown to -294 second, with the right amount of Attack Speed a crit every two hits is guaranteed. The total Attack speed value where this stops working (and you get a crit only every 3 hits) lies approximately around 270.
- Shadow Walk is an invisibility spell that renders Bounty Hunter invisible until he attacks, casts a spell, uses an item or the duration expires.
- Shadow Walk is Bounty Hunter's go-to spell for mobility, escape and initiations, and as such it should generally be leveled first. At level 1, it provides 20 seconds of invisibility on a 15 second cooldown, allowing Bounty Hunter to remain invisible so long as he as the mana to back it up.
- As Shadow Walk applies the bonus damage buff right at the start of the spell, it is possible to attack a target during the fade time and still inflict the bonus damage while retaining the buff. This can help with last hitting or harassing as you will be able to use the bonus damage twice (once during the fade time and once when breaking invisibility), however it becomes less feasible as the spell is leveled due to the fade time shortening.
- Shadow Walk has an instant cast time, and does not interrupt channeling. As such, it can be cast without breaking your stride while escaping, and can be activated after beginning to channel a Town Portal Scroll, whether the aim is to become invisible while escaping or to become invisible prior to reaching your destination.
- Be wary that using items will break Shadow Walk. Therefore, actions such as changing attributes on Power Treads or activating the movement speed boost of Phase Boots will break invisibility, so be extremely careful about item usage while under the effects of Shadow Walk. Conversely though, if you have been affected by Dust of Appearance you can instantly break invisibility using the above two methods in order to negate the slow that it inflicts on invisible heroes.
- Keep in mind, Shadow Walk's duration is always longer than its cooldown. At higher levels, it is possible to strike a target out of invisibility, become invisible again immediately afterward, and then hit them again for large amounts of bonus damage. However, this also leaves Bounty Hunter vulnerable since he will be visible and with Shadow Walk on cooldown, making escaping difficult if the enemy finds him before he can turn invisible again.
- Track is a powerful intelligence spell in any situation, and is a great boon to any team. As it provides True Sight on the target, as well as increasing the movement speed of all nearby allies, it is extremely powerful in preventing the enemy from easily initiating and giving them a mobility advantage during teamfights.
- Track is an extremely powerful ability against heroes that rely on invisibility to escape, as the True Sight reveals their location through invisibility. It is also very powerful against heroes with blink abilities, as they often rely not only on quickly putting distance between themselves and their pursuers, but also on jumping in an unknown direction to make their opponents guess.
- While Bounty Hunter excels at killing lone targets by himself, his team is better served in assisting him whenever he ganks targets. This not only increases the chances of a successful kill, but awards bonus reliable gold to nearby allies. The allied bonus gold exists for a reason, and rewards a team that coordinates kills with Bounty Hunter rather than letting him try to kill enemies by himself.
- In a teamfight, try to cast Track on as many enemies as possible first, as it will give all teammates a movement speed advantage and mark them all as potential targets for a bounced Shuriken Toss. Any successful kills will greatly increase the gold bounty received, which can lead to buying more core items faster. However, when ganking a solo target, it is generally advisable to reserve Track until after you initiate on the target with a Shadow Walk and Jinada combo, in order to avoid alerting them until the last possible second.
- In general, it is wise to Track as many enemy heroes as possible in order to gather intelligence on their locations and movement. This gives your team a powerful strategic advantage since they will not only know the location of the Tracked targets and benefit from the movement speed bonus over a wider area, but may also give warning of other enemies casting certain spells (such as Moonlight Shadow).
- Keep in mind, Track allows you to discern how much gold the target has, which lets you know how close they may be to getting one of their core items. After tracking an enemy (especially one of their core heroes), be sure to alert teammates to the debuff (Alt + left click on the debuff in the enemy player's status bar). This also serves to log the event in the chat log for later reference. This allows your team to make the decision based on the amount of farm the enemy has: if they are close to getting another major item, quickly rotating and ganking the target can set them back tremendously, however if they are farming poorly you can choose to engage a different enemy or take the time to continue farming on your side.
- Since Track has such a low cooldown, it is a very good ability to use in order to break an enemy's Linken's Sphere, whether in a teamfight or during a gank. In teamfights, it can render their Linken's Sphere useless ahead of time, and in ganks it can be used as a leader prior to a stronger targeted disable.
- It is important to note that if Bounty Hunter is in the enemy's Fog of War and casts Track on an enemy, his position is not revealed to them, thereby allowing him to stealthily mark targets for his team. However, the debuff status indicator still appears in enemy players' HUDs, and the movement speed bonus is easily visible on all nearby creeps. Regardless, it is a useful feature in that it allows Bounty Hunter to Track targets without revealing his location.
- Given his role, Bounty Hunter has a myriad of items he can build to assist in getting kills against targets.
- As an off-laner, it is wise to request your team's supports to buy you an Observer Ward to give you vision in the enemy's jungle and possibly block their pull camp (although do not be afraid to buy one for yourself if you must move immediately to lane upon connecting to battle). Doing so will alert you to any incoming rotations and ganks so that you can keep alive. Once past the laning stage you are encouraged to regularly buy Observer Wards yourself, as you can traverse the map with Shadow Walk and place them for your team, giving you map vision to spot potential ganks.
- One each of Tango and Healing Salve are basic regen requirements that can keep Bounty Hunter in-lane despite enemy harass.
- Clarity is useful for allowing Bounty Hunter to maintain casting his spells, as his base mana pool is quite small and Shadow Walk costs little mana to cast.
- Remaining inventory space should be filled with Iron Branches, as they provide stats that improve survivability. Given the cost of above items, enough gold is usually left over for one.
- Stout Shield provides damage block to counter physical harassment, and is effectively mandatory when playing in the off-lane.
- Boots of Speed are important for survival as an off-laner, and important for getting in position for ganks as a roamer. Buy them as early as possible.
- Orb of Venom is a powerful early-game complement to Jinada, as the combination of slows can reduce a target's movement speed by up to 0.42
- Urn of Shadows is a good item to get on Bounty Hunter once he begins roaming, as it firms up his HP pool and gives him some mana regen. Getting successful ganks off will get charges that can be used either to add Pure damage in further ganks or to heal in between ganks.
- Magic Stick is highly recommended on Bounty Hunter, as his small HP pool makes it disparately effective on him and his spells have low cooldowns (and a high mana cost, in the case of Shuriken Toss). A full charge Magic Stick can replenish a large fraction of Bounty Hunter's health, and give him enough mana to cast multiple spells. Magic Wand is powerful for all the same reasons, giving Bounty Hunter additional stats as well as larger charge storage.
- Phase Boots give Bounty Hunter increased mobility, and the bonus damage synergizes best with Jinada. Be careful when using the active, as doing so will break Shadow Walk invisibility.
- Bottle is very effective on Bounty Hunter both as an off-laner and roamer. The low mana cost of his spells and his small HP pool mean that he gets a lot of benefits from the regen, and his mobility with Shadow Walk allows him to bottle runes as needed.
- Drum of Endurance gives comprehensive attribute bonuses as well as increasing Bounty Hunter and his allies' movement speed, important for getting ganks off. Activating it during a gank or fight can give teammates a tremendous movement speed boost that stacks with that of Track, giving your allies a decisive edge in mobility.
- Orchid Malevolence greatly increases the size of Bounty Hunter's mana pool, as well as giving him powerful mana regen to let him sustain without having to return to the fountain as often. The silence is a powerful ganking tool, as it prevents foes from retaliating during a gank and can help ensure a kill due to the damage amplification at the end of the silence.
- Monkey King Bar drastically increases Bounty Hunter's initiating power, as the increased damage can deal tremendous damage when combined with Jinada. The True Strike prevents missing from blind and evasion, and the Mini-Bash gives a chance to interrupt channeling spells without immediately resorting to Shuriken Toss.
- Vladmir's Offering allows Bounty Hunter to lifesteal, giving him a measure of sustainability by attacking creeps. The basic mana and health regen it provides makes him a more independent roamer, and the bonus damage and armor improve his offensive and defensive capabilities. Beware purchasing this item when initiating on foes in-lane though, as the lifesteal aura may give away your position.
- Butterfly gives Bounty Hunter increased damage and attack speed, and the evasion gives him survivability against physical attacks. As well, the active can be used to improve mobility while roaming, at the cost of the evasion.
- Linken's Sphere protects Bounty Hunter from targeted spells, on top of the stat and regen improvement. Blocking an enemy from targeting you with a disable or debuff can drastically improve Bounty Hunter's survivability when evading enemy ganks, and can increase the chances of successful ganks by preventing the enemy from counter-disabling you.
- Black King Bar gives Bounty Hunter a way to contribute directly in teamfights, as he can fight the enemy without worrying about being disabled by their spells. The stats increase his HP pool and damage output as well.
- Medallion of Courage is a useful mid-game utility item that increases Bounty Hunter's damage output. The armor gives him more survivability while the mana regen allows him to sustain his mana pool somewhat, and the active can be used shortly after initiation to increase a target's vulnerability to physical damage.
- Desolator is a powerful initiating item as it drastically increases the damage taken from attacking a target out of Shadow Walk with Jinada. The armor reduction helps allies to add their damage in a gank, ensuring a swift kill.
- Ring of Basilius can be a useful laning item to build, as Bounty Hunter's spells cost very little mana and his base intelligence is somewhat low. The additional armor and damage also help him to survive, and it can be disassembled later and the Sage's Mask recycled for another item, since Bounty Hunter's intelligence growth makes the Sage's Mask better for mana regen once he hits level 6.
- Blink Dagger greatly extends Bounty Hunter's already strong mobility, as he can chase and escape over impassable terrain, especially when combined with Track. It can be used in conjunction with Shadow Walk to allow for powerful initiations and chasing, preventing targets from running away under even the best of circumstances.
- Aether Lens can be a powerful utility item that aids Bounty Hunter's spell casting. It boosts the size of his mana pool, as well as providing HP regen for increased survivability. The increased cast range and spell damage amplification on Shuriken Toss and Track can allow Bounty Hunter to cast his spells from safer range and in some cases can allow him to more easily secure kills.
- Solar Crest can be upgraded from a purchased Medallion of Courage, and tremendously improves Bounty Hunter's survivability against physical attacks as well as giving him increased mana regen. Using the active on a gank target reduces their armor by a tremendous amount, and reduces their ability to fight back due to the induced miss chance.
- Boots of Travel give Bounty Hunter more mobility, along with freeing up inventory space due to not needing a Town Portal Scroll anymore. As such, more powerful damage or initiating items can be built, and targets can be chased more easily, as well as the global repositioning giving Bounty Hunter far more opportunities to execute ganks due to being able to teleport to allied creeps instead of just towers.
- Guardian Greaves is useful if you are playing Bounty Hunter support, the active replenishes health and mana to all your team and you, remove debuffs from you like some silences, and the guardian aura its strong during teamfights, it can be farmed fast with Track kills.
- Scythe of Vyse is a very strong utility item that greatly improves Bounty Hunter's disabling potential. Besides giving him all-around stats and greatly boosting his intelligence and mana regen, the Hex is an extremely powerful hard disable that can instantly disable a target from range.
- Abyssal Blade is a very expensive item, not only increasing Bounty Hunter's survivability by a lot. While the passive bash is better used on a hero with enough attack speed to proc the stun reliably, Abyssal Blade is an exception for Bounty Hunter since he can use the active to instantly stun a gank target, and disable targets through spell immunity as well.