Dota 2

Pre-game checklist for 5 stacks

Content of the article: "Pre-game checklist for 5 stacks"

I see that a lot of people are frustrated with solo queue, rightfully so, and i think this might help people that want to start party queueing organize their games better. Gameplans lead to victory and winning is cool.

I feel like its accessible to players of all levels. The point of communicating these things pre-game, as you'll see, is to start a discussion that will generate your gameplan, and how detailed that will be depends on your knowledge of the game. But this is the (somewhat simplified) foundation of it and, hopefully, should help.

1. Which towers are important to both teams.

This is based on the pos1 of both teams. There are two main kinds of farmers: pressure farmers (to the deadlane crowd) that prefers to play on the enemy's safelane during midgame like Jugg, TB, AM, Naix, Slark or any hero with illusions or an escape mechanism, and triangle farmers like Sven, Luna, Drow, Arc Warden's main unit, Gyro or any draft that has a Magnus in it.

So if you're against a pressure farmer, defending your safelane's T1 is very important as it will force him to consume his own jungle, which will starve the rest of his team of farm (as is important to take their safelane's T1 if your carry needs to play there). If you're against a triangle farmer, taking down the enemy's mid T1 is important cuz it gives you access to gank him. Acknowledging this is the start of any gameplan. Say you're against a Sven – you'll want to take down their mid t1, then ward their triangle, then think about which heroes should smoke there to gank him.

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2. Itemization

Every player should think and communicate their items as you're drafting and walking to lanes. Items are, obviously, critical to Dota and how much you know about this topic will dictate how complex this discussion will be. At the very least, be aware of what counters the enemy and how your items should change your behaviour on the map.

3. Hero distribution on the map

Like itemization, this will be as complex as your knowledge of the game. But a good start is thinking about who pushes lanes, who wants to play off map to gank, who wants to play close to another hero, and who counter-pushes. If you want to take it one step further, think about item timings. Say you have a Jugg and an Earthshaker on your team. You know that your Jugg wants to play on the enemy's safelane, so try to use your first Echo Slam at around 10min to win a TF there to take that T1, drop some wards there to help Jugg, then tell Shaker to go farm his very important Blink Dagger on your now empty safelane while his ult is on CD.

This is relevant for the whole game and it can get very complex, from a bunch of small, efficiency moves you can make to big, entire team movements and positioning. I'm pretty high mmr and i guarantee i don't know everything about it, but do make an effort to apply what you know, as any small thing you can will have a positive effect on your game. And its pretty cool.

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4. Order of initiation

Basically the order of spells and items that should be cast. Initiators or setup goes first, dmg follows. If you have a Jakiro and a Mirana on your team, make them play together and have Ice Path setting up easy Arrows. If you're against an Ursa or Troll, tell your Force Staff carrier to save his item to kite it. If everybody is aware of when is the best time to cast/use their shit, you're gonna have a better time and not depend on fast reactions.

5. Siege

You gotta have a plan to siege high ground. Can't wait for random TFs that go your way to be able to take barracks. Think about yours and their spells, Aegis, and items that help you position a hero to hit their buildings without forcing a TF. Medallion, Solar Crest, Force Staff, Lotus, Deso, Hurricane Pike, Meteor Hammer, BKB and Linkens, these can all alow you to do at least some dmg to their T3s and barracks. Remember that your plan will most likely revolve around key items or spells, and those have cooldowns. Its absolutelly fine to siege till you're forced to use something, like a Force Staff to pull your CCed sieger out of the enemy's range, and then back off since its now on CD.


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