In 7.20, Dragon Knight is still a stalwart of the midlane, and now his armor passive is even more efficient with the general changes. Monkey King got a free Manta dodge, and Meepo continues to completely dominate games. But the patch has also brought forth some interesting, new heroes into the meta. A few support heroes can now also be played as cores, giving captains the type of flex pick to disguise their lineups.
Drow Ranger is one of the most efficient users of the new Wraith Band stats
At first blush, Drow’s 7.20 changes were heavy nerfs. But some tweaking in 7.20b, then the addition of a proc of 120 damage in 7.20c has brought her pack. She’s without her Agility ultimate and the natural survivability and armor that came with it, but now she farms exceptionally quick at just level 6. Traditionally a safelane carry, a few teams have been demonstrating her viability in the midlane, to great effect.
In the Bucharest Minor, OG.Topson hit 740GPM in 20 minutes with essentially just Wraith Bands and a Blink Dagger. While he did have a team buy him space and stack his ancients, Drow Ranger is sufficient enough with so few items that she might see a rise in pubs as well.
Sumail turns the fight with a stolen Eclipse
Rubick’s Fade Bolt has always been a valuable laning tool, and now it’s become a nuisance when playing against him in the mid lane. He’s had his base damage increased, and a new passive, Arcane Supremacy, that makes the spells he steals better than your own. Telekinesis has since been nerfed, but that hasn’t changed the skill build or the effectiveness of mid Rubick players. Fade Bolt with two Nulls and level 4 in Arcane Supremacy deals close to 425 damage before reductions. Add a stolen spell on top of it and Rubick can set the tempo for the mid game.
[missing hero: outworld-devourer]
The rework to OD has brought him back to the midlane
Since his rework, Outworld Devourer may have one of the lowest winrates of the patch, but the hero is finding much success in both upper skill brackets and competitive play. Managing his mana is no longer automatic, but he can still sustain his own mana pool with the new Equilbrium. All it takes is one Astral Imprisonment on a creep wave to essentially replenish his mana pool. He’s benefitted from the new Null Talisman and Kaya derivatives, and now he has a slow and a means to flash farm. He still retains the weaknesses he has before, but he’s also able to detonate enemy heroes with just a handful of Null Talismans and a Kaya.
Fata gets a double kill, showcasing the effectiveness of the new Inner Fire
Huskar lost his magic resistance, but gained a 2-for-1 deal with Inner Vitality essentially embedding with Beserker’s Blood. His win rate has increased by 7 points, from 47% in 7.19 to 54% in just the past week. All his talents received considerable buffs, he’s no longer mana dependent for his regeneration, and Bracers now gives efficient tankiness for Strength heroes. He still has a matchup disadvantage against the hero of this patch–Phantom Assassin–but now he has a disarm, with the new Inner Fire, to mitigate some of his weaknesses.
Especially with Dazzle’s +75 damage level 10 talent, it just takes a few right clicks and level 4 Poison Touch to kill most heroes in the early to mid game
While traditionally a support, Dazzle has been favored as a core hero by quite a few professional teams. PSG.LGD runs the hero offlane, while Liquid has Matumbaman use him in the midlane. His Bad Juju was recently nerfed, and though he’s no longer the first round pick/ban tier we saw at the Chongqing Major, he still offers too much to his team to be ignored. Guardian Greaves on just a 20 second cooldown is close to broken, and its passive armor boost, +15 to heroes below 20% health, is more efficient than before with the rework to armor’s formula.
The hero also happens to pair well with Phantom Assassin, as well as being a great hero to counter her as well. Against Na’Vi in the Megafon Winter grand finals, Team Liquid’s Dazzle and Io provided enough sustain to outlast PA’s damage, at least for the duration of her BKB.