ESL One Berlin Major has concluded. Joins us as we highlight some of the best heroes in each role so you can win your pubs!
The Berlin Major was the first Dota 2 Major on the 7.33 patch and, as such, the Dota 2 community was beyond excited to see what teams had cooked up. The patch also completely changed the meta and there were significant alterations to hero pick rates and roles. So, let's break down some of the most picked heroes in each role throughout the Dota 2 Major!
Mid Lane: Pangolier is unstoppable at the Berlin Major
The arguably most important lane in Dota 2 didn't change too much in terms of the hero pool. Pangolier and Void Spirit were still incredibly popular. While on the other hand, Storm Spirit swept in like a ball of lightning and stole their thunder.
After the nerfs to Pangolier in 7.33, a lot of the community lost faith in the musketeer's strength. However, nothing seemed to keep Pangolier down as he was one of the most picked midlaners throughout the tournament with 110 games. Pangolier provided a combination of control with good damage throughout all stages of the event. With the Black King Bar changes, locking down Pangolier was even more of a challenge.
The most picked midlaner throughout the Berlin Major was Storm Spirit. By nature, Storm Spirit was somewhat greedy, needing levels and gold to have an impact. So with the increased farm on the map, Storm benefited greatly and allowed him to become a huge threat. With good matchups in the current meta in both midlanes and against cores, Storm Spirit thrived.
With the inclusion of Universal Heroes, Void Spirit became a top pick at the Berlin Major. Rather than his previous builds that focused on magic damage, the new build tended to focus on right-click damage. The Echo Sabre and Desolator build did wonders for the hero and allowed him to blow up anyone who got in his way.
Throughout ESL One Berlin, the kill record was set by OG's Bozhidar "bzm" Bogdanov for his performance on Void Spirit in game one of OG versus SMG with 25 kills. Bzm showcased the damage output of the new Echo Sabre build.
With the 7.33 patch expanding the map significantly, there was a lot more farming available for teams. And so, there was a shift to more farming-heavy safelaners. Heroes like Terrorblade, Alchemist, and Slark that could capitalize on the increased map size resurfaced. Thanks to our friends at Spectral.gg, we had a detailed breakdown of the Berlin Major's stats!
The Demon Marauder Terrorblade was the best of both worlds. His ability to farm efficiently as well as provide immense pressure in fights at any stage of the game made him a premier pick during the Major. With 118 matches, Terrorblade was the second most picked safelaner during the tournament. Teams like Gaming Gladiators or Shopify Rebellion excelled with Terrorblade throughout the Major.
Our fishy friend made quite the splash. With a surprising involvement in 133 matches, Slark was one of the most contested heroes at the Major. Slark benefited immensely from the map update of 7.33. Due to Slark's poor laning, the map changes allowed him to catch back up faster than before. Additionally, there were significantly more nooks and places to hide for Slark to capitalize on Shadow Dance.
Seeing Alchemist's pick rate skyrocket was not a surprise. With there being significantly more farming on the map as well as his changes in the patch, Alchemist was heavily contested. Especially since his iconic farming tool, Radiance, was cheaper, meaning record-breaking timings. The rework of his Greevil's Greed ability, which now automatically leveled, made Alchemist's lane even better.
During game one between Liquid and EG, Liquid's Michael "miCKe" Vu reached 1,055 GPM on Alchemist, which was a number every Anti-Mage player dreamt of. Being fully six slotted at 33 minutes was quite an impressive feat.
Offlane Doom still reigns supreme
The new patch allowed for new and old faces to return to the lane. With the map changes, fighting into Underlord or a farmed Doom posed a challenge more than ever. If either of these heroes wasn't banned, they were picked up almost instantly.
Doom was one of the most contested heroes at ESL One Berlin. He was a first-phase hero even prior to 7.33. With the combination of Midas and his Devour ability, Doom mimicked Alchemist in terms of farming. He made incredible use of his farming, as he was a great aura carrier and overall incredibly tanky. Additionally, he was great at team fighting due to his ultimate eliminating a hero in those battles.
Doom was the king of the ESL One Berlin draft. He had the most involvement in matches at 165 and the highest contest rate at 87%. Despite being the most contested pick, Doom still made it as the fifth most picked hero at the Major.
Underlord was another tanky offlaner that was insanely popular throughout the Major. In the new 7.33 map, there were a lot more choke points around. And what did Underlord excel at? Fighting in choke points. Coupled with his ability to move himself or his teammates around the map quickly, it was no surprise that Underlord was one of the most contested heroes.
Support features mana regen and control
The new map allowed forgotten supports to thrive. Keeper of the Light and Disruptor both saw an incredible resurgence throughout the Major. Moreover, the increased map size allowed heroes like Enchantress to roam free and control the map.
Keeper of the Light
Our favorite wizard of light made his return in the Berlin Major with blinding success. He benefited from the ability to skill Blinding Light at level one, making his lane presence stronger than ever before. A 40% miss chance for four seconds and 100 damage at level one was one of the best abilities in lane. Coupled with the value of his Charkra magic paired up with the prominent cores of this patch, Keeper of the Light became an amazing support. This was further emphasized by his 60% win rate at the Major.
On a similar note, Crystal Maiden was the highest picked support at the tournament with 92 matches. Despite having a flat 50% win rate, Crystal Maiden fulfilled a similar role to Keeper of the Light, but added more team fight and control. Especially since teams tended to think she was not worthy of a ban, she tended to be an easy pick for teams that needed a good support.
Like Underlord, Disruptor thrived with the map changes in 7.33. The more choke points on the map meant more areas for the enemy to clump up in. Additionally, his kit was great for catching enemy heroes that were out of position. Disruptor excelled at forcing early Black King Bars just to not get caught out, which meant they were more susceptible to other spells.
More map area meant more creeps for Enchantress to steal. As a result, throughout the laning stage at the Berlin Major, Enchantress thrived at bullying heroes. Moreover, with the buffed shard ability that provided 100 attack and move speed to heroes within a radius, Enchantress thrived with zoo heroes.
With 135 matches, Enchantress was the fifth most involved hero at the Major. This also made her a highly contested hero. But surprisingly, she had a 38% win rate. Could there have been untapped potential that the pros saw that the stats didn't account for? Who knows, but as Dota 2 analyst Alan "Nahaz" Bester famously said, "Stats don't lie!"
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