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The Map is the playing field for all Dota 2 matches. It is comprised of two sides, one for the Radiant faction, and one for the Dire faction. To win, players must destroy the opposing side's Ancient, an important building at the center of each team's base. The map is represented in the interface by the minimap.
Each faction occupies a diagonal half of the map, separated in the middle by the river. The Radiant is based at the lower left corner of the map, while the Dire is based at the upper right corner. The Ancients are located inside strongholds at the heart of each faction's territory.
The map is segmented into three different lanes, the top, the bottom, and the middle lane. Each one of these lanes leads to the other team's base, guarded by towers along the way. During the early laning phase of the game, most gameplay is centered around the lanes.
The bottom lane for the Radiant, and the top lane for the Dire, are considered safe lanes. Creeps meet each other close to the towers, which provide greater protection from enemies. These lanes are recommended for beginners, as they provide some added protection against ganking.
The River separates the two factional sides of the map. It is surrounded by high ground, which blocks players' vision on both sides.
There are two types of Runes that spawn in 2 minute intervals at different locations on the map: Power-up Runes and Bounty Runes. As their names imply, Power-up Runes grant players bonuses and Bounty Runes a bounty.
From the start of the game onward, Bounty Runes will spawn at four different locations on the map, two of which on the Radiant, and the other two on the Dire side.
From the 2 minute mark onward, a Power-up Rune will spawn randomly at one of two points in the river. There are six possible runes that can spawn:
- Double Damage Rune: Grants 100% of a hero's base damage as bonus damage.
- Illusion Rune: Creates two illusions of the hero.
- Invisibility Rune: Grants invisibility after a 1 second fade time.
- Regeneration Rune: Fully restores health and mana. Stops upon taking player-based damage.
- Haste Rune: Grants maximum movement speed and immunity to slows.
- Arcane Rune: Causes all spell cooldowns to be reduced by 30% and mana costs to be reduced by 40%.
Roshan is an exceptionally strong creep located at the western end of the river. If killed, Roshan will grant gold to the entire team as well as drop the Aegis of the Immortal, which will automatically resurrect the holder upon death. Later in the game, Roshan also drops a Cheese after killed the second time and onward, which will greatly restore a hero's health and mana when used. Fighting Roshan usually requires more than one player.
The Jungle refers to the forested area between lanes. This is where neutral creeps can be found, which can be killed for gold and experience. It is possible to level up by killing creeps in the jungle instead of in the lanes. This practice is called jungling.
Buildings are scattered throughout the map, and can be destroyed by the opposing side for gold and experience. To reach the Ancient, buildings must be destroyed in order from the outermost to the innermost. Buildings may be given temporary invulnerability with the Glyph of Fortification.
Each faction has defensive towers placed along the lanes leading to the Ancient. Towers deal single target damage to heroes and creeps. In the early stages of the game, a hero can only take a few hits from a tower before dying, so one must be careful as to not get too close to towers until they have gained enough strength. Towers have True Sight, and can detect invisible enemies.
Shrines have an ability with a 5 minute cooldown. Allied heroes can right-click to activate it, generating a 500 AoE aura that lasts for 5 seconds. The aura provides 90/40 HP/MP regeneration per second (heal values increase during the game by 2 HP / 0.75 MP per minute). Activates once you are in melee range after right-clicking on it. Shrines ability becomes available to use outside of the base once creeps spawn at 0:00. There are Shrines near each team's Secret Shop and new Ancient Camp locations. each Shrines can be teleported to. Shrines become vulnerable whenever a Tier 3 tower falls for the respective team.
Each base has three pairs of barracks, placed behind towers. One is for melee creeps, and one is for ranged creeps. If the barracks is destroyed, the opposing team's creeps will become stronger. If all 6 barracks are destroyed, all opposing creeps will gain an even larger power-up, which makes them very difficult to defend against. These mega creeps can usually assure victory because of their high health, damage and numbers, and can kill a Hero quickly if they are reckless enough.
This is the main building in both bases. If one team destroys the other team's Ancient, the game is over and the destroying team has won. This building does not attack and will slowly regenerate health over time. It is defended by two towers and cannot be attacked until those towers are destroyed.
Six shops exist on the map, three for each side.
- Base Shop: This shop is located in the Fountain, and sells all basic items and recipes.
- Secret Shop: This shop is located near the short lane for each side. It sells costlier items needed as ingredients for late-game items.
- Side Lane Shop: This shop is located at the edge of the long lane. It sells some items from the base shop and the secret shop, mostly ones useful for laning.
The Minimap is located at the corner of the Head-up display. It gives players an overhead view of the entire map, as well as the ability to issue certain commands. Constant awareness of the minimap is crucial to skilled gameplay.
Vision defines which areas of the map is visible to the player's team. Areas that are not visible are covered by the Fog of War. Visions can be granted by allied heroes, units, and wards. Trees, walls, and higher terrain will obstruct vision.
There are six different height levels that have gameplay relevance:
- Lowground (mid lanes)
- Highground (base, side lanes)
- Elevated (fountain / few cliffs)
- Cliffs (most other cliffs)
- Valley (side lane tinker ward spots)
One height level can be connected to another by a stair (passable) or a cliff (obstructed).
If an attack projectile is released, the uphill miss Evasion is calculated depending on where the two units are standing on the impact time.
Every time a player sends a move command, the pathing takes care of finding the fastest way possible. The path can be blocked by cliffs, Trees, Iron Branches, other units (also known as Body Block) and Traps.
Cliffs are the major component to limit the movement on the map. They can only be surpassed by Forced Movement, Blinks or Unobstructed Movement. Trees define the lane and jungle contours for the most part. They can be destroyed by various means and allow juking in the Fog of War. Body blocking is very important to keep the creep equilibrium at a favorable position in your Lane or to prevent an enemy from escaping until your allies catch up. Traps are mainly intended to cut off the route for chasing or escaping heroes, but they can be used for unconventional pulling methods as well.
- The map's total size is approximately 15,000 units x 15,000 game units.
The Dota 2 map is ultimately derived from the Starcraft custom map Aeon of Strife, which also featured multiple lanes and a final objective to destroy. The map's current diagonal format was created for Defense of the Ancients, the Warcraft 3 custom map upon which Dota 2 is based.
- Reduced Shrine count in base from 5 to 3.
- Removed the shrines from the top and bottom lanes behind the barracks.
- Added more trees for TP cover around the Dire towers
- Swapped the Dire secondary jungle ancients and medium camp spots (and improved spawn boxes/stackability)
- The Dire ward spot to the left of the Ancients no longer gives vision over the rune area in front of Roshan
- Slightly adjusted the Dire secondary jungle Bounty Rune further back
- Reduced spawnbox size for both Dire hard camps
- Shifted down the spawnbox for the ancient camp (formerly medium camp) in the Dire secondary jungle (so a high ground ward does not block the camp)
- Fixed a rare case where Dire ancients could be stuck between trees when spawning
Just as the Ancients shape the minds of the creatures who worship them, so too do their powers flow through the lanes of the forest, reshaping the lands to reveal new sources of power and lay waste to any notions of safety. Featuring changes to nearly every part of the map, a new Ancient Neutral Creep type, and a set of new allied structures in the jungles, there's a lot to learn and explore.
- Moved Roshan to new area near top Powerup Rune spot
- Roshan attack range increased from 128 to 150
- Roshan armor increased from 5 to 15
- Roshan HP reduced from 8000 to 5500
- Roshan HP gain per 4 minutes reduced from 700 to 460
- Roshan armor gain per 4 minutes increased from 0.7 to 1.1
- Added new building type — Shrine (has 1500 HP, 20 Armor)
- There are Shrines near each team's Secret Shop and new Ancient Camp locations. Shrines can be teleported to. Shrines become vulnerable whenever all Tier 2 towers fall for the respective team.
- Each team also has 5 Shrines inside the base.
- Shrines have an ability with a 5 minute cooldown. Allied heroes can right-click to activate it, generating a 500 AoE aura that lasts for 5 seconds. The aura provides 120/40 HP/MP regeneration per second (heal values increase during the game by 2 HP / 1 MP per minute). Activates once you are in melee range after right-clicking on it. Shrines ability becomes available to use outside of the base once creeps spawn at 0:00.
- Shrines do not grant vision.
- Shrines provide a 150 gold bounty for each player on the team when killed.
- Runes are now two different categories: Powerup Runes (Haste, Double Damage, etc.) and Bounty Runes.
- Bounty Runes are no longer located in the River.
- Powerup Rune spawns now occur at only one river location at a time.
- Each of the four jungles now spawns a Bounty Rune every 2 minutes.
- Greevil's Greed Bounty Rune multiplier rescaled from 3/4/5/6x to a constant 2x
- Bottle now only replenishes 2 charges when filled with a Bounty Rune.
- Reworked entire jungle terrain for Radiant and Dire (both primary and secondary jungles), and all connecting routes
- The Primary jungle for each team now has 1 Ancient, 2 hard, 2 medium, and 1 small camp.
- The Secondary jungle for each team now has 1 Ancient, 1 hard, and 1 medium camp.
- Terrain Layout
- Reworked the paths and hiding spots to the left and right of the side lanes
- Reworked many ward spot locations and juke paths
- Added various juke paths near the map edges between tier 1 and tier 2 towers
- Adjusted tree distribution to the left of the top radiant barracks
- Neutrals Changes
- Neutrals spawn time from 0:30/1/2/3/4/etc. to 0:30/1/3/5/7/etc.
- Dying to Neutral creeps now causes your hero to have a minimum respawn time of 26 (equal to level 6 respawn time)
- Ancients are no longer Spell Immune; now have 70% Magic Resistance
- The following abilities do not affect Ancients: Arcane Orb and Chakram
- Neutral creeps now have 1 mana regen
- Swapped order of Ancient Thunderhide abilities (Slam is now 3rd)
- Swapped order of Ancient Black Dragon abilities (Dragonhide Aura is now 3rd)
- New Ancients
- Added a new Ancient Neutral Camp (2 Prowler Acolytes and 1 Prowler Shaman)
- Prowler Acolyte:
- Provides a stacking Aura - Provides 10% Lifesteal and 10 HP regeneration
- Has 0% Magic Resistance, 10 Armor
- Prowler Shaman:
- Passive Auto-Cast - Causes next attack to root the enemy for 2 seconds, preventing movement and dealing 75 DPS. Cooldown: 15
- Active - Can cast in a 300 AoE effect around him, reducing Base Physical Armor by 50% and dealing 200 physical damage.
- Lasts 6 seconds. Cooldown: 12
- Note: Both abilities will be used by neutrals against enemies if there is a nearby hero.
- Has 0% Magic Resistance, 11 Armor
- Other Map Changes
- Tier 4 towers now have the same regeneration as the Ancient.
- Using TP scroll no longer destroys nearby trees.
- Glyph cooldown refresh is now granted 1 second after a Tier 1 tower dies rather than immediately.
- Ancient Building vision increased from 1900/1200 to 2600
- Reduced Effigy building count in each base from 15 to 5
- Adjusted Effigy building positions in the base
- Effigy buildings HP increased from 500 to 1000
- Effigy buildings armor increased from 10 to 12
- Effigy buildings bounty increased from 111 to 125 to the killer
- Fixed Glyph not affecting Effigy buildings
- Tier 2/3/4 towers damage rescaled from 122-182 to 142-162
- Adjusted the position of the bottom Radiant Tier 2 tower and nearby trees.
- Moved the ramp between the Dire Secret Shop and the Dire ancients further back a bit and made it narrower.
- Increased the width of the ramp behind the Radiant bottom Tier 2 tower.
- Added a new ramp to the left of the bottom Dire Tier 1 tower.
- Added a new ward spot in the middle of the Dire jungle.
- Adjusted the spawn box of the right-most Radiant hard camp near the safe lane.
- Tier 3 Towers/Rax moved very slightly back away from the ramp.
- Adjusted the juke path in the clump of trees to the left of the Dire Tier 1 mid tower in the area closest to the ramp.
- Added a small hiding spot in the trees to the top left of the Radiant medium camp near middle.
- Slightly reduced the spawn box of the Dire offlane Neutral camp.
- Added new paths to the trees on the left of the top Radiant Tier 1 tower.
- Added passable areas in the trees below the bottom Tier 2 Radiant tower.
- Spaced out Radiant Tier 4 towers slightly.
- Added a small hiding spot to the trees above the bottom Radiant Tier 2 tower.
- Moved Radiant mid creep spawn point back a little.
- Removed the tree on the Dire cliff right above the top Rune.
- Added two extra trees in the Radiant middle lane to the upper right of the Tier 1 tower
- Rearranged the clump of trees below the far right Radiant hard camp to modify visibility lines for heroes nearby.
- Added a new hiding spot to the right of the Dire small camp.
- Fixed Radiant offlane neutral camp units not always being visible with line of sight in front of them.
- Added Arcane Rune
- Causes all spell cooldowns to be reduced by 30% and mana costs to be reduced by 50%.
- Lasts for 50 seconds.
- Added a new neutral hard camp for each team, near their respective Secret Shops
- Added a small ramp from the Radiant Secret Shop to the ward spot right above it
- Moved the Radiant hard camp closer to the Dire offlane
- Swapped Medium and Hard camp in Radiant Jungle
- Added a new pathway from Radiant mid to Radiant jungle
- Added a ramp connecting the Radiant jungle to the area near Roshan
- Created a walkable pathway to the Radiant rune ward
- Created a new juke spot behind the Dire Secret Shop
- Expanded Terrain around the top Tier 2 Radiant tower
- Moved the bottom rune up a little bit
- Radiant middle tier 1 tower has been moved back
- Adjusted Radiant small camp spawn box
- Added a new ward spot near the Radiant ancients (does not reveal top rune)
- Created a new pathway leading to the wardspot below the Radiant Secret Shop
- Moved the Radiant ramp leading to the top rune further away from the rune (slightly closer to mid lane)
- Moved the Dire ramp leading to the top rune closer up
- Adjusted the terrain and the ramp going down from the Radiant Ancients slightly
- Improved jukability in the terrain around the Dire side shop
- Added a path through the trees at Radiant offlane sideshop moving south and added juke paths
- Added a new ward spot to the right of the top tier 1 Radiant tower
- Added a couple of trees to right of the ramp leading down from the Radiant ancients (covering some vision to the left of it)
- Dire is now able to enter the jungle through the middle Radiant ramp and walk to the side without being in range to dispel their smoke
- Added a new pathway above the top Dire side shop
- Created a new pathway in the middle of the long column of trees at the bottom Radiant Tier 2 area
- Added a walkable path to the ward spot near bottom rune
- Reduced the size of the pull camp box on the Dire safelane hard camp
- Added a passable walkway from the cliff above the top rune to the Dire area to the right of it
- Added a new pathway to the south of the bottom side shop
- Added a couple of trees in the Dire base between the mid and top towers along the ledge
- Adjusted juke paths near the Radiant ward spot near the hard camp
- Added a new juke spot to the south of the bottom Radiant hard camp
- Added a hiding spot in the Dire middle lane near the edge of the Secret Shop
- Added some trees below the top Radiant T2 tower
- Adjusted trees to the left of the Dire offlane (affecting visibility of heroes coming from the left)
- Added a pathway above the Radiant Ancient (leading up to the new ward spot)
- Adjusted Dire secret shop location slightly
- Adjusted the terrain pathing a little bit around the loop where the Radiant bottom left ward spot is
- Adjusted tree layout of the high ground to the right of the Radiant middle camp
- Moved Radiant ramp to the bottom rune back a little bit
- Added hiding spots in the clump of trees above the formerly Radiant hard camp (now the Radiant medium camp)
- Nudged the Radiant small camp down very slightly
- Moved the Radiant mid medium camp down slightly and adjusted nearby trees
- Added a new hiding spot on the Dire bottom lane, in the area higher ground to the right of the Dire Ancients
- Adjusted the position of the Radiant middle ramp slightly
- Added a new juke spot to the terrain to the right of the Radiant small camp
- Adjusted tree pathway and added a couple of hiding spots above the top Dire T2 tower
- Fountain area is now at a higher elevation level.
- Fountain vision increased from 1400 to 1800.
- Fountain attack range increased from 1100 to 1200.
- Fountain True Sight increased from 900 to 1200.
- Reworked terrain surrounding the Roshan area.
- Reworked terrain around the Dire bottom lane.
- Reworked terrain below the Top Radiant Tier 1 Tower.
- Reworked the area to the left of the bottom Dire Tier 2 Tower.
- Moved Dire bottom Tier 2 Tower back very slightly.
- Added an alternate path to the north of the bottom lane Side Shop.
- Added an alternate path to the right of the bottom Dire Tier 1 Tower.
- Added a new ward spot near the bottom Dire Tier 2 Tower.
- Added a new ward spot near the top Radiant Tier 2 Tower.
- Added a new ward spot between Roshan and the Dire bottom lane.
- Bottom Lane Dire creeps now arrive slightly closer to the Dire Tier 1 Tower.
- Top Lane Radiant creeps now arrive slightly farther from the Radiant Tier 1 Tower.
- Added a Bounty Rune:
- Grants 50 XP +5/Min and 50 gold +2/Min.
- Can be bottled.
- Two runes now spawn in the river every two minutes. One of them will always be a Bounty Rune.
- Runes are replaced every two minutes if they are not picked up.