Lifestealer/Guide

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Gameplay[edit]

Playstyle
Lifestealer minimap icon.png Lifestealer is a durable frontliner that can outfight even the tankiest of heroes. Obtaining exclusive lifesteal from his passive, Feast, Lifestealer thrives facing high health enemies. Rage grants Lifestealer spell immunity and bonus movement speed, making him an even scarier threat. Although being melee, Lifestealer still has some means of keeping his target in place through the use of Open Wounds, providing a significant slow to the enemy while granting lifesteal to any allied units attacking the target. With Lifestealer's kit, he is best suited in the middle of the fight so he may sustain health off his attacks and make use of his spell immunity, but that does not mean he has to be the first seen. Lifestealer's ultimate, Infest, allows him to hide inside an allied hero, or, the body of a creep, putting himself right in the action before enemies can react to his presence. While his kit has many benefits, players must be careful using Lifestealer's spells too liberally, as his small mana pool will quickly be depleted and could leave Lifestealer in an unfavorable situation.
Pros Cons
  • Built-in spell immunity.
  • Able to recover health through a multitude of abilities.
  • Ultimate allows for creative application in a variety of situations.
  • No natural means of disabling and keeping opponents in place.
  • Ultimate can be highly situational and requires tactical usage to maximize potential due to utilitarian nature.
  • Fairly item-dependent in order to keep up with other carries.
  • Small mana pool

Carry[edit]

Lifestealer is most often played in the safelane, and with only a few levels can be left on his own without being in significant danger. With enough levels and items, he can reliably fight against most heroes 1-on-1 but struggles against multiple targets. Heroes relying on their high health pool to be relevant can seriously punish their team if they allow Lifestealer to Feast off them, as each of Lifestealer's attacks restores him a health amount based on a percentage of the units max health. This allows Lifestealer to remain in fights as he can gain large amounts of health back and whittle down the enemies while his team cleans up the rest.

During laning, if against heroes lacking mobility or means of escape Lifestealer can easily zone enemy heroes as their harass can quickly be regenerated through means of his passive. Depending on the lane, Lifestealer can take a couple levels in Feast to sustain harassment, or if dealing with heavy spell damage and lockdown, can opt to level Rage early on. Once strong enough to fight, Open Wounds will allow Lifestealer to get many hits in while the enemy is slowed. Ideally, another allied hero can lock down the enemy before Lifestealer uses Open Wounds as the cast range of this ability at early levels is very small.

Ability Builds[edit]

Generic Lifestealer
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Feast icon.pngOpen Wounds icon.pngFeast icon.pngRage icon.pngFeast icon.pngInfest icon.pngFeast icon.pngRage icon.pngRage icon.pngTalent icon.pngRage icon.pngInfest icon.pngOpen Wounds icon.pngOpen Wounds icon.pngTalent icon.pngOpen Wounds icon.pngInfest icon.pngTalent icon.pngTalent icon.png

Talents[edit]

Hero Talents
+1.5s Rage Duration25+1.2% Feast Lifesteal
+40% Open Wounds Lifesteal2016% Evasion
+20 Movement Speed15+25 Damage
+25 Attack Speed10+150 Health
Notes:
  • The health talent increases maximum health capacity, and keeps the current health percentage.
  • This attack damage talent is added as raw attack damage, so it does not benefit illusions, and is not affected by most percentage-based damage increasing or reducing effects.
  • The evasion talent stacks multiplicatively with other sources of evasion.

Tips & Tactics[edit]

General[edit]

  • There is a term called the Infest bomb among players which includes a Lifestealer infesting a high mobility hero such as Storm Spirit minimap icon.png Storm Spirit, Puck minimap icon.png Puck, Queen of Pain minimap icon.png Queen of Pain, Magnus minimap icon.png Magnus, Spirit Breaker minimap icon.png Spirit Breaker, and invisible heroes like, Riki minimap icon.png Riki and Nyx Assassin minimap icon.png Nyx Assassin to initiate upon enemies by having these heroes enter the fray and unleashing all of their own spells in quick succession before Lifestealer himself comes out of them and dealing the nuke damage of Infest while following it up with his DPS using Rage.

Abilities[edit]

Rage[edit]

  • Rage has an instant cast time, a careful casting of the ability will allow Lifestealer to dodge disabling spells such as Storm Hammer and Magic Missile.
  • Unlike many other carries, Lifestealer does not need to invest in Black King Bar icon.png Black King Bar since Rage grants spell immunity with similar duration and a significantly lower cooldown.
  • Although Rage renders Lifestealer spell immune, he is still vulnerable to being affected by passives and auras.
    • Take note that some abilities, such as Quill Spray, Viper Strike, and Nether Swap, pierce spell immunity.
    • Be aware of enemies that have the ability to silence, stun, or hex, as Lifestealer will be left helpless and unable to use Rage to break out of such disables.

Feast[edit]

  • Feast allows lifestealing based on target's max health. The larger health pool a target has, the more health Feast will restore. This ability is particularly helpful when dealing with high strength heroes.
  • Feast increases Lifestealer's attack speed so that items such as Maelstrom icon.png Maelstrom or Skull Basher icon.png Skull Basher proc more often and reliably.

Open Wounds[edit]

  • Open Wounds heals for a percentage of the damage dealt to that unit, regardless of the source or type of damage being dealt.
    • This means that spell and item abilities will heal a proportional amount to the damage it deals. This includes abilities that instantly destroys enemies, such as Hand of Midas icon.png Hand of Midas's Transmute.
  • Open Wounds slow's potency decreases with every passing second. So, opponents will be able to recover their movement speed and escape if Lifestealer does not have disable items or support from allies to keep them in place.

Infest[edit]

  • Infest can control Ancient Creeps at level 2.
  • Infesting a creep will not break the creep's cover.
  • Infesting an enemy creep can be an effective way to escape from a losing battle, as the enemy will not be able to deny the creep so long as its current health is above 50%.
    • Be aware of your opponents' skill set when attempting this, as spells like Demonic Conversion can instantly destroy creeps regardless of their allegiance.

Items[edit]

Starting items:

  • Tango icon.png Tango regenerates health early on until you can sustain yourself with lifesteal.
  • Healing Salve icon.png Healing Salve also restores health.

Early game:

  • Quelling Blade icon.png Quelling Blade makes last hitting easier.
  • Boots of Speed icon.png Boots of Speed are needed to gank in combination with Open Wounds.
  • Magic Stick icon.png Magic Stick sustains Lifestealer if the enemy has a certain number of spammable skills.
  • Blight Stone icon.png Blight Stone increases Lifestealer's early game damage, and builds into Desolator icon.png Desolator later.
  • Orb of Venom icon.png Orb of Venom is a nice early game pickup if his lane has a moderate level of kill potential, as the slow helps Lifestealer to catch up with the enemy.

Mid game:

  • Phase Boots icon.png Phase Boots allows Lifestealer to close the distance on his targets in order to get within Open Wounds' short range.
  • Magic Wand icon.png Magic Wand, as an upgrade of Magic Stick icon.png Magic Stick, greatly improves the hero's effectiveness mostly by compensating for low mana pool.
  • Armlet of Mordiggian (Inactive) icon.png Armlet of Mordiggian shines with the extra HP, armor, and damage from the active Unholy Strength, all of which Lifestealer wants. Feast and Open Wounds negates the health loss to some extent, while the rest of the abilities offer a chance of armlet toggling.

Late game:

  • Desolator icon.png Desolator increases Lifestealer's damage output greatly as it reduces armor of the enemy, allows him to tear down supports and carries with the help of extra attack speed and Spell Immunity of Rage. The item helps with farming and pushing towers as well.
  • Abyssal Blade icon.png Abyssal Blade gives Lifestealer a reliable source of stun, allows him to disable an enemy long enough for him to tear down. Lifestealer has almost no damage output outside of melee range, so it is really crucial to stick to his target as a melee carry. Besides, this item improves the hero's survivability with damage block and bonus health.

Situational items:

  • Hand of Midas icon.png Hand of Midas allows Lifestealer to comeback from a bad laning stage. Note that the item would delay your mid-game power spike as better items could be purchased with the gold spent.
  • Sange and Yasha icon.png Sange and Yasha gives Lifestealer movement speed, attack speed, and attack damage. The movement speed bonus helps Lifestealer catch up with the enemies.
  • Assault Cuirass icon.png Assault Cuirass compensates for Lifestealer's low base armor and gives more attack speed to use with Feast. The armor reduction allows for a faster tower pushing and stronger team fight presence.
  • Monkey King Bar icon.png Monkey King Bar helps with the problem of evasion. The magical damage procs also help improve damage output, but the main draw for this item is the attack damage it offers.
  • Daedalus icon.png Daedalus allows Lifestealer to crit with his feast damage. Against high health heroes, such as Pudge minimap icon.png Pudge and Sven minimap icon.png Sven, Lifestealer can deal huge crits to his enemies.
  • Bloodthorn icon.png Bloodthorn is generally an alternative of Daedalus icon.png Daedalus and Monkey King Bar icon.png Monkey King Bar as it provides extra attacks speed, mana pool, and mana regen. The active Soul Rend allows him to rip his opponents apart with silence.
  • Mjollnir icon.png Mjollnir can be useful against illusion heroes, as both Static Charge and Chain Lightning help dealing with them. As a frontliner, Static Charge can be triggered towards its maximum effect. Meanwhile, the item helps with farming and wave-clearing.
  • Heaven's Halberd icon.png Heaven's Halberd provide evasion against the physical attack of enemies, as well as a disarm for the enemy carry.
  • Blink Dagger icon.png Blink Dagger gives Lifestealer the opportunity to close the gap between heroes who like to keep their distance from fights; or can work as an escape after using Infest. This is useful if you find yourself unable to get in range for what would otherwise be free kills. Keep in mind that with the help of allies, Infest could do the same job as well.
  • Radiance (Active) icon.png Radiance gives Lifestealer both physical and magical damage through Burn and its additional damage, accelerating his farming speed. Also allows for Lifestealer to have more impact in the middle of fights, providing a damaging and blinding aura.
  • Heart of Tarrasque icon.png Heart of Tarrasque gives Lifestealer immense durability and some damage. Can be a good item to pick up if Lifestealer is acting as the main initiator and/or tank for his team and needs the additional health.