Dota 2 fans can rejoice: after five months of a single major patch, Valve have announced the massive wave of changes that will come this Wednesday with 7.07. The patch itself has been promised for November 1, but it seems the patch notes have been released early to allow the player base to prepare.
Fans already had plenty to expect, with two heroes announced at The International 7 for this specific update. As for the rest of the patch, in a few words, the sheer number of changes will be a lot for players to handle.
Two new heroes
Valve certainly delivered on these two, as both are dramatically different new additions to the game. The literal home-wrecker Dark Willow is a lockdown designated as a support, with a stun and a root, as well as one that sends enemies dashing back towards their fountains.
Pangolier, meanwhile, is described by Valve as a core hero, with a skillset that emphasizes damage per second and a passive that can possibly pierce enemy armor altogether. He can also literally roll over enemies—and deliver a few hits along the way.
The one with the most lasting impact in the community itself may be the ranked seasons. In both normal ajnd ranked modes, players will receive “medals” depending on their skill, with five “stars” within each, and seasons last approximately six months long. It pretty closely resembles the matchmaking rankings of other games such as Valve sister-game Counter-Strike: Global Offensive and rival MOBA League of Legends, each of which work on a “medal” system as well.
Most interestingly for esports, the first ban phase will introduce a third hero, totaling bans to six heroes altogether. It’s a bit of a trend-setter, as no popular MOBAs at this moment have more bans than picks. (League of Legends only recently introduced a ten-ban system, like Dota’s.)
This likely targets teams such as TI7 champions Team Liquid that have a larger array of “stylistic” picks, such as their well-respected Keeper of the Light, Broodmother and Venomancer players, that can’t be picked apart with the traditional drafting system. Teams often have difficulty drafting against such lineups because the two-hero first ban system allows many heroes to slip between the cracks.
Game mode changes
All-Pick isn’t a wash anymore for players trying to take it seriously. As one pro gracefully put it:
Second pick still has 5 counter picks ranked still has randoming LOOLOIOJWDIOJFJIO:SDFIO:WEJF:IOWEJFIOWEJFIO:WE— Quinn Callahan (@CCnCDotA2) October 20, 2017
Now, devs have changed All-Pick drafting order to be: A-BB-AA-BB-AA-B. Plus, randoming has been changed to a smaller “daily hero pool,” with no random gold and no repicking (but an extra iron branch and an extra mango).
The client also introduces fixes to fan-favorite Ability Draft as well as an entirely new mode, Dota Turbo, with increased Gold and experience for a quicker, more energetic game experience.
But wait... there’s more!?
There’s plenty more to pick apart in the patch. For one, five heroes have received reworks, including esports favorites Broodmother and Viper. Five new items are being introduced, allowing players to smack buildings and trees, or finally build an Urn into something useful.
Plus, every hero gets a free Teleport Scroll, supports got some major nerfs, and many, many talents have been reworked.
In other words, 7.07 could be one of the biggest patches in Dota 2 history—but was it worth the wait? Fans will see over the next few weeks.