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The last role to discuss before we fully go into the patch waiting mode until the end of April. Position five in 7.32e is a very high impact role because the importance of the laning stage felt slightly diminished. As such, most Top Tier support heroes aren’t simply good laners with sustain, but rather strong teamfight characters who offer something at every stage of the game.
We can’t say the hero is particularly popular, but he is a ~55%+ win rate hero in all skill brackets. It is a very strong result for a straightforward support hero. The best part — almost everyone can play Omniknight.
We called the hero one of the hidden gems of the previous major patch and most of it still holds true. Omniknight is still powerful, he is still very much underrated and he should be played more.
The hero even received multiple buffs in the initial 7.32 patch and even after being toned down in 7.32c is still the best hard support, as long as you have a ranged core in lane. We feel like Omniknight is one of the few melee supports who can work relatively well in a double melee lane, but would advise against it for solo pubs.
If you find yourself in a double melee, perhaps it will make sense to max out Purification going for an old-school 4-1-1-1 build, though in all other scenarios we insist that a 1-4-1-1 build is just better in terms of heals and damage output. This is a default build in pro level pubs and the reason for it is well-explained in the blog post we linked a couple of paragraphs back.
Seeing Dazzle do so well statistically came as a bit of a surprise and while the hero is far from ubiquity in average pubs, he is an absolute menace in high level games. Moreover, outside of positioning, the hero is also quite straightforward to play, so we can’t think of a reason he shouldn’t work for everyone, across all skill brackets.
The reason for his success is simple: people finally gave into greed. Dazzle is a save support, but also really isn’t. At least not at his most effective. The way the hero currently finds the most success us by prioritising Poison Touch, maxing out Shadow Wave second and only then going for the Shallow Grave extra points. So a 4-1-1-1 build into 4-1-4-2, skipping the talent at level ten and delaying it until after all other abilities are maxed out.
Itemization-wise the hero is easy. You get your Arcane Boots and then you save money for Aghanim’s Shard. That is honestly about it. Having a 2-second AoE hex turns Dazzle into one of the strongest teamfight supports, hence maxing out the ability: you need lower cooldowns on it.
Later on, going for save items in Force Staff or Glimmer Cape is customary, and you are going to use them on yourself quite frequently: a good Dazzle player is a number one priority for the enemy team. Aether Lens can help solve the survivability problem a little bit, but also do not disregard Guardian Greaves if your offlaner doesn’t want to build it.
Still the poster boy for the patch, Treant Protector persisted through the nerfs. In fact, due to Meteor Hammer buffs, the hero is arguably in an even better position.
Hero is a lot weaker globally. Losing two armor from a value point in Living Armor is massive. He is also slightly weaker tactically, with no heal amplification from Nature’s Guise, but this mostly puts him in line with other melee supports. Everything else is more or less the same: Leech Seed is still one of the best trading tools in lane and Nature’s Grasp is still an incredibly powerful value point slow.
The later game for the hero also didn’t change much. It is still Treant’s job to wait until the enemy presses BKB and then go in with Overgrowth to ruin their day. It is simple and very effective.
Now, with Meteor Hammer being so powerful and Aghanim’s Shard providing a 2-second Root, Treant Protector can even go for solo harass plays and sometimes might even net a support kill. Between his laning presence, teamfight presence, ganking and scouting potential, there is almost nothing the hero can’t do.
There are several heroes who almost made it to this list, but fell just a bit short. Can you guess who we are talking about and would you like for us to make a follow-up post about these heroes? Share your thoughts in the comment section below.