Sand King

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Sand King
Sand King icon.png
Strength attribute symbol.png
Agility attribute symbol.png
Intelligence attribute symbol.png
22 + 3
19 + 1.8
19 + 1.8
Level 0 1 15 25 30
Health 200 640 1480 2080 2380
Health regen 0 2.2 6.4 9.4 10.9
Mana 75 303 603 819 927
Mana regen 0 0.95 2.21 3.11 3.56
Armor -1 2.17 6.37 9.37 10.87
Att/sec 0.65 0.76 0.91 1.01 1.07
Damage 23‒33 45‒55 87‒97 117‒127 132‒142
Magic resistance 25%
▶️ Movement speed 290
▶️ Attack speed 110
Turn rate 0.5
Vision range 1800/800
Attack range 150
Projectile speed Instant
Attack animation 0.53+0.47
Base attack time 1.7
Damage block 8
Collision size 24
Gib type Default

Crixalis, the Sand King, is a melee strength hero with one of the highest area of effect (AoE) damage outputs in the entire game. All four of his abilities can affect multiple enemy units, and can combo quite well with each other. He is one of the most versatile Heroes in the game as he can push, initiate, support, gank, and even semi-carry if he does well. Late game his effectiveness diminishes as none of his abilities scale, but he can still function to support carries with Burrowstrike and Epicenter's slow. He is also versatile enough to be able to go to any lane with at least moderate success. He works well as a participant in a dual lane or trilane, but can also solo very effectively against melee enemies, since Caustic Finale discourages enemies from approaching the creeps. His main role in the team is to deliver a devastating initiation, delivering both stuns and slows to the enemy team. Crixalis is also very effective at escaping and dodging with two low cost, low cooldown abilities that disjoint projectiles and can escape enemy damage. Burrowstrike allows him to tunnel underground and resurface in a short line, dealing damage and stunning all targets it hits. Sand Storm is used as an escape mechanism and to do AoE damage. Caustic Finale serves as a strong harassing tool against enemy melee heroes or as a followup after he Burrowstrikes a creep wave, allowing him to farm quite effectively. Finally, his ultimate delivers a vast amount of AoE damage and slow centered around himself, though it necessitates a safe way to channel it, like a Blink Dagger.


Sand King minimap icon.pngCrixalis, the Sand King
▶️ "I will show you fear in a handful of sand…"
The sands of the Scintillant Waste are alive and sentient--the whole vast desert speaks to itself, thinking thoughts only such a vastness can conceive. But when it needs to find a form to communicate with those of more limited scope, it frees a fragment of itself, and fills a carapace of magic armor formed by the cunning Djinn of Qaldin. This essential identity calls itself Crixalis, meaning 'Soul of the Sand,' but others know it as Sand King. Sand King takes the form of a huge arachnid, inspired by the Scintillant Waste's small but ubiquitous denizens; and this is a true outward expression of his ferocious nature. Guardian, warrior, ambassador--Sand King is all of these things, inseparable from the endless desert that gave him life.


Burrowstrike icon.png
Enemies / Self
Sand King burrows into the ground and tunnels forward, damaging and stunning enemy units above him as he resurfaces.
Cast Animation: 0+0.53
Cast Range: 400/500/600/700 (Upgradable by Aghanim's Scepter. 800/1000/1200/1400)
Spikes Radius: 150
Damage: 100/160/220/280
Stun Duration: 1.6/1.8/2/2.2
Cooldown: 14/13/12/11 (With talent: 12/11/10/9)
Mana: 110/120/130/140
Aghanim's upgrade: Adds Caustic Finale poison to heroes hit by your Burrowstrike and increases its cast range. Does not apply Caustic Finale to illusions.
Does not pierce spell immunity. Attempts to damage if already hit enemies turn spell immune before landing.
Blocked by Linken's Sphere. Blocked upon impact by everyone within range of the spikes.
Buff modifier_sandking_burrowstrike: Dispellable with death only.
Debuff modifier_sandking_impale: Dispellable with strong dispels.
Crixalis often lies in wait, burrowing under the surface to ambush his adversaries.


  • The spikes travel at a speed of 2000 (Upgradable by Aghanim's Scepter. 3000), reaching max range in 0.2/0.25/0.3/0.35 (Upgradable by Aghanim's Scepter. 0.27/0.33/0.4/0.47) seconds.
  • Sand King is teleported instantly towards the targeted point once the spikes reach it.
  • Does not disjoint projectiles upon cast or upon teleporting.
  • Sand King is disabled during the cast backswing of Burrowstrike.
  • When targeting a unit, Sand King chases the target until it is within range and casts Burrowstrike towards its direction.
    • The spikes still do not home in on the target, thus can be evaded. Targeting a unit only determines the direction upon cast.
  • While in the air, other units may pass below hit airborne units.
  • The damage is applied upon landing, not upon getting hit.
  • Can hit units up to 550/650/750/850 (Upgradable by Aghanim's Scepter. 950/1150/1350/1550) range away (max range + radius).
  • The burrowing and reappearing takes 0.53 seconds from the moment the spell is cast, during which Sand King cannot do anything.
  • The spikes do not travel the full distance when targeting closer than the max range.

Sand Storm
Sand Storm icon.png
No Target
Enemies / Self
Sand King creates a fearsome sandstorm that damages enemy units while hiding him from vision. The effect ends when Sand King leaves the area.
Cast Animation: 0+0.5
Radius: 425/500/575/650
Fade Delay: 0.7
Damage per Second: 20/45/70/95 (Talent 50/75/100/125)
Enemy Miss Chance: 0 (Talent 40%)
Movement Speed Slow: 0 (Talent 40%)
Sand Storm Duration: 20/25/30/35
Aura Linger Duration: 0.5
Cooldown: 40/34/28/22
Mana: 75
Does not pierce spell immunity. Slow and blind persists if debuff was placed before spell immunity.
Buff modifier_sandking_sand_storm: Dispellable with death only.
Buff modifier_invisible: Dispellable with death only.
Buff modifier_sandking_sand_storm_slow_aura_thinker: Undispellable. Persists death.
Debuff modifier_sandking_sand_storm_slow: Undispellable. Persists death.
Some say Crixalis is a mirage; his carapace appearing then vanishing between the whirling sands of the Scintillant Waste.


  • The fade delay is not used upon cast. Sand King turns invisible instantly on cast.
  • The fade delay takes effect when breaking the invisibility by attacking, or casting spells or items.
    • However, since casting Sand Storm applies the invisibility instantly, the fade delay effectively does not take effect when re-casting it while inside the previous cast's area.
  • Sand Storm deals 10/22.5/35/47.5 (Talent 25/37.5/50/62.5) damage in 0.5 second intervals, starting immediately upon cast, resulting in a total of 40/50/60/70 instances.
  • Can deal up to 400/1125/2100/3325 (Talent 1000/1875/3000/4375) damage to a single unit (before reductions) if it stays in range for the whole duration.

Caustic Finale
Caustic Finale icon.png
Sand King's attacks inject a venom that causes enemy units to move more slowly and to violently explode when it dies.
Damage Radius: 500
Base Damage: 70/90/110/130
Max Health as Damage: 10%/14%/18%/22%
Movement Speed Slow: 10%/15%/20%/25% (Talent 18%/23%/28%/33%)
Debuff Duration: 5
Buff modifier_sand_king_caustic_finale: Undispellable. Persists death.
Debuff modifier_sand_king_caustic_finale_orb: Dispellable with any dispel.
An injection from Crixalis makes one brittle and as dry as the arid wastes, subject to implosive demise.


  • The area damage triggers only when the target dies while having the debuff on.
  • The area damage is only applied when the unit is killed by one of its enemies.
    • This means the unit does not explode when it gets denied, expires (e.g. summons and illusions), or killed without a creditted source (e.g. multiple Meepo minimap icon.png Meepoes).
  • When an illusion dies with the debuff, only the base damage is applied within the area, the health-based extra damage is not applied.
  • Successive attacks on the same target do not stack, but refresh the duration instead.
    • However, the debuff does not get updated. All its values are set upon initial placement.

Epicenter icon.png
After channeling for 2 seconds, Sand King sends a disturbance into the earth, causing it to shudder violently. All enemies caught within range will take damage and become slowed. Each subsequent pulse increases the radius of damage dealt.
Cast Animation: 0+0
Channel Time: 2
Radius per Pulse: 275/325/375/425/475/525/575/625/675/725 (Talent /775/825/875/925)
Number of Pulses: 6/8/10 (Talent 10/12/14)
Damage per Pulse: 110/120/130 (Talent 130/140/150)
Move Speed Slow: 30%
Attack Speed Slow: 30
Slow Duration: 3
Cooldown: 120/110/100
Mana: 150/225/300
Buff modifier_sand_king_epicenter: Dispellable with death only.
Debuff modifier_sand_king_epicenter_slow: Dispellable with any dispel.
Many an explorer was lost to the quicksands of the Scintillant Waste.


  • When interrupted during the channeling, the spell does nothing, wasting the cooldown and mana.
  • If the channeling was successful the damage pulses cannot be interrupted anymore, not even by Sand King's death.
  • Sand King can act freely during the damage pulses.
  • The pulse radii are all centered at Sand King's current location, not at the cast location.
  • When Sand King dies after having finished channeling, the pulses still continue from where he died.
  • The pulses happen in 0.5/0.375/0.3 (Talent 0.3/0.25/0.21) second intervals, starting 0.5/0.375/0.3 (Talent 0.3/0.25/0.21) seconds after the channeling finishes.
    • This means it takes 3 seconds for the spell to release all pulses after the initial delay.
  • Can deal a total of 660/960/1300 damage without any talents (before reductions).
    • Can deal a total of 1100/1440/1820 damage when the number of pulses increasing talent is chosen.
    • Can deal a total of 780/1120/1500 damage when the damage per pulse increasing talent is chosen.
    • Can deal a total of 1300/1680/2100 damage when both talents are chosen.
  • The slow is applied to enemies on each pulse. Multiple instances of the slow on a unit do not stack, but refresh the duration.
    • Can slow a single unit for up to 6 seconds (total duration of pulses + debuff duration).
  • Each pulse first applies the damage, then the debuff.
  • Multiple casts of Epicenter fully stack, with each cast creating its own independent instance.


Hero Talents
40% Sand Storm Slow and Blind25+4 Epicenter Pulses
+20 Health Regen20-2s Burrowstrike Cooldown
+8% Caustic Finale Slow15+30 Sand Storm DPS
+175 Health10+20 Epicenter Damage Per Pulse
  • The health talent increases maximum health capacity, and keeps the current health percentage.

Recent Changes[edit]

Main Article: Sand King/Changelogs
Old Caustic Finale:
Sand King's attacks inject a venom that causes enemy units to violently explode when its timer expires, or when the unit dies, damaging and slowing nearby enemies. Deals less damage if its timer expires.
Effect radius: 400
Explosion damage: 90/130/170/220
Expire damage: 20/50/80/110
Movement speed slow: 15%/20%/25%/30%
Attack speed slow: 15/20/25/30
Debuff duration: 6
Slow duration: 3/3.5/4/4.5
Notes: The debuff cannot be refreshed. The debuff deals damage and slows upon expiring. If the debuff is lost due to the target dying, the damage is higher.
New Caustic Finale:
Sand King's attacks inject a venom that causes enemy units to move more slowly and violently explode when it dies.
Damage radius: 500
Base damage: 70/90/110/130
Max health as damage: 10%/14%/18%/22%
Movement speed slow: 10%/15%/20%/25%
Debuff duration: 5
Notes: The debuff can be refreshed. Does nothing upon expiring. Deals area damage only when the target dies.
  • Talents:
Level 10 right talent changed: -30 Epicenter attack speed slow -> +20 Epicenter damage per pulse.
Level 15 left talent changed: +2 Epicenter pulses -> +8% Caustic Finale movement speed slow.
Level 20 left talent changed: +25 Epicenter damage per pulse -> +20 health regen.
Level 20 right talent changed: +8 armor -> -2s Burrowstrike cooldown.
Level 25 right talent changed: +40 health regen -> +4 Epicenter pulses.
  • Talents:
Level 10 left talent: +150 health increased to +175.
Level 10 right talent changed: +15 movement speed -> -30 Epicenter attack speed slow.
Level 15 left talent changed: -40 Epicenter attack speed slow -> +2 Epicenter pulses.
Level 20 left talent changed: +3 Epicenter pulses -> +25 Epicenter damage per pulse.
  • Talents:
Level 10 left talent: +200 health reduced to +150.
Level 10 right talent: +20 movement speed reduced to +15.
Level 15 left talent: +50 Epicenter attack speed slow reduced to +40.
Level 15 right talent: +40 Sand Storm damage per second reduced to +30.
Level 20 left talent: +4 Epicenter pulses reduced to +3.
Level 20 right talent: +10 armor reduced to +8.
Level 25 left talent: 50% Sand Storm blind/movement speed slow reduced to 40%.
Level 25 right talent: +50 health regen reduced to +40.

Recommended items[edit]

Starting items:

  • Tango icon.png Tango provides health regeneration to help you survive the laning stage.
  • Healing Salve icon.png Healing Salve restores health as well.
  • Clarity icon.png Clarity is recommended, since Sand King's mana pool is quite small. Even with stat items, he can only cast Burrowstrike twice before running completely out of mana. Being able to cast Burrowstrike multiple times in-lane allows Sand King to be a very aggressive support that increases his team's chances of getting First Blood.
  • Observer Ward icon.png Observer Ward provides vision to set up or spot ganks.

Early game:

  • Magic Stick icon.png Magic Stick is useful on all support heroes, Sand King included. A full-charge Magic Stick allows him to replenish a large fraction of his HP and mana, the mana giving him enough instant burst regen to cast Burrowstrike one more time to escape or ensure a kill.
  • Boots of Speed icon.png Boots of Speed give Sand King the mobility he needs to catch up to enemies and cast Burrowstrike on them. Because Sand King's spells are so reliant on positioning, getting Boots as early as possible can enable him to be more active on the map.

Mid game:

  • Magic Wand icon.png Magic Wand gives Sand King more attributes and the ability to store more charges. The burst mana regen is particularly important since Sand King's mana pool is quite small throughout all stages of the game, so having the mana to cast his spells is extremely important.
  • Arcane Boots icon.png Arcane Boots are built on Sand King both to increase the size of his own mana pool and to allow him to replenish his own and his teammates' mana, a crucial duty for a support. As Epicenter requires copious amounts of mana, Sand King must bolster his mana pool if he is to be able to initiate properly with his ultimate.
  • Blink Dagger icon.png Blink Dagger should be the first core item that Sand King builds, as it greatly extends his reach and mobility, allowing him to initiate with Burrowstrike or Epicenter. Particularly, combined with Burrowstrike, Sand King can instantly jump on and disable an enemy from up to 2000 range away.
  • Force Staff icon.png Force Staff is extremely strong on Sand King, as it allows him to displace himself even more on top of Blink Dagger and Burrowstrike. It can extend his initiating range to 2600 (3250 with Aghanim's Scepter), or allow him to displace allies and/or enemies in engagements. As well, it provides him with intelligence, giving him a bigger mana pool and gives him a small amount of HP regen as well.
  • Eul's Scepter of Divinity icon.png Eul's Scepter of Divinity can be a very strong utility item to build on Sand King. It increases his base movement speed, granting him even more mobility, and gives him more mana and mana regen, allowing him to effectively ignore his mana requirements. The active ability can be used on enemies as an extra disable, or on Sand King himself for temporary invulnerability, such as immediately after a successful Epicenter combo.
  • Town Portal Scroll icon.png Town Portal Scroll is important to carry on all heroes. For Sand King, being able to show up to any engagement and add Blink-Burrowstrike to the mix can be a very powerful asset to have.

Late game:

  • Aghanim's Scepter icon.png Aghanim's Scepter greatly increases Sand King's initiation range. The longer-ranged Burrowstrike allows Sand King to catch significantly more targets with the stun from farther away, especially when combined with Blink Dagger, and applying Caustic Finale to all struck enemy heroes deals significantly more nuke damage without requiring Sand King to attack them. The item also improves Sand King's overall stats, particularly his HP and mana to give him more survivability during an initiation.

Situational items:

  • Radiance (Active) icon.png Radiance is an item to priortize for Sand King if your early game networth is strong. Combined with Sandstorm, it gives Sand King one of the highest DPS AoE combinations in the game. Already a strong split pushing and wave-clearing hero, Radiance allows Sand King to burn waves down. As Cryxalis is a slippery hero that is difficult to catch and kill, Radiance is a natural fit for the hero as he is likely to be alive for lengthy teamfights, allowing him to stack his Radiance burn. The added attack damage also pairs nicely with his Caustic Finale as he is able to right click enemies more effectively.
  • Veil of Discord icon.png Veil of Discord is a very strong utility item on Sand King, as he can cast it immediately before blinking in with a Burrowstrike-Epicenter-Sandstorm combo.
  • Blade Mail icon.png Blade Mail is a good mid-game item that gives Sand King survivability. The intelligence bonus shores up his mana pool, while the armor and active can give Sand King more survivability in teamfights if the enemy chooses to focus him.
  • Shiva's Guard icon.png Shiva's Guard gives Sand King immense survivability against physical damage, as well as another slow and damage nuke. Using the active alongside Epicenter can drastically slow enemies down, keeping them inside the radius of the ultimate.
  • Black King Bar icon.png Black King Bar can allow Sand King to channel his ultimate without worry of being interrupted by most enemy spells. It can be a handy item to have if you can't rely on making clean initiations, or need to do more in a teamfight without being disabled.
  • Heart of Tarrasque icon.png Heart of Tarrasque greatly increases the size of Sand King's health pool, allowing him to do more in teamfights before falling.
  • Glimmer Cape icon.png Glimmer Cape, while costly in terms of mana, is a very strong initiation and utility item that can improve Sand King's reach. The improved attack speed aids with utilizing Caustic Finale, while the magic resistance improves his survivability against magic nukes. The active, cast on himself, allows Sand King to stealthily approach targets in order to initiate with Blink-Burrowstrike, or allow an ally with initiation spells to do the same; if needed, it can also aid in channeling Epicenter by providing invisibility. It can also be used defensively, giving caught allies an escape window if the enemy has no ready detection.
  • Sentry Ward icon.png Sentry Wards are extremely useful on Sand King, as he is a very strong de-warder despite being a melee hero. Possession of both Blink Dagger and Burrowstrike allows him to blink onto high-ground ward spots, place a Sentry Ward and destroy any Observer Wards he finds, and then Burrowstrike back down to safety.
  • Orb of Venom icon.png Orb of Venom can be a useful utility item that aids Sand King in chasing enemies. Combined with Caustic Finale, Sand King can greatly slow enemies' movement speed.
  • Urn of Shadows icon.png Urn of Shadows is a good utility item, as Sand King has quite low base strength and can benefit from the mana regen. As he is already a very strong ganker, Sand King can easily get the charges he needs for the active, which allows him to heal himself or teammates, or add more damage to any ganks he participates in.
  • Pipe of Insight icon.png Pipe of Insight is a good utility item to build. It increases Sand King's resistance to magical nukes, useful due to the manner in which he initiates with Epicenter, and the active can shield himself and teammates from magical damage for a time.
  • Crimson Guard icon.png Crimson Guard can be a useful durability and utility item to purchase on Sand King. As he already has survivability issues due to his low armor and mediocre strength, buffing up his physical survivability can allow him to do more in fights, particularly as he is a melee hero who can take full advantage of the damage block, and the active gives all of his teammates immense resistance to physical damage.
  • Scythe of Vyse icon.png Scythe of Vyse is a very expensive item to build, but gives Sand King many strong benefits. It gives him stats across the board and a self-sustaining mana pool, and the active gives him yet another instant hard-disable that he can use on the enemy.


Roles: Initiator Initiator Disabler Disabler Support Support Nuker Nuker Escape Escape Jungler Jungler
Complexity: ★★☆
Playstyle: Obscured in the harshest of Sand Storms was Crixalis, guardian and ambassador of the Scintillant Waste. A construct of sentient sand, the Sand King traverses the world in a carapace of Djinn's craft. From beneath the shifting dunes he ambushes enemies with Burrowstrike, inflicting a desiccating venom that causes their corpses to erupt in a Caustic Finale. But true destruction was heralded by a beating tail. Within moments, the ground pulsed with violent tremors, and from its moving Epicenter Crixalis pursued scattering foes until the very last fell to their knees. Across bazaars and between towns, the learned repeat a simple truth. Where the Sand King walks, the earth trembles.