Dota 2 basics: Agility heroes
The Agility attribute determines the hero’s armour and speed. Although it increases armour, heroes that rely on it are not as tenacious as the Strength heroes. What they lack in survivability, they make up for in lethality thanks to their superior attack speed and tricky abilities.
There is an even split between ranged and melee Agility heroes but they all fill the same role which is to kill a target. Dota 2 heroes with Agility as their main attribute depends heavily on items which rendered them helpless at the beginning of the game. It is ideal to keep your distance from enemy Strength or Intelligence heroes but you may try your luck at outperforming a rival Agility hero.
Your goal as an Agility hero user is to gain gold as fast as possible to get your core items. This is why most heroes in this roster are played as carries or utility supports. Many of them also have abilities that let them slip past detection and overcome obstacles to efficiently roam between lanes.
Five Agility heroes to play at the pub
Using Agility heroes in public matches can be tricky because they are usually difficult to learn for beginners. You will be fine as long as you are familiar with the jungle and you know which enemies should be your priorities. The following Agility heroes are great to master to climb the ranks in Dota 2.
Slark, the Nightcrawler, has remained one of the most famous mid-lane carries in the game. If only looking at the stats, he has the lowest value compared to other Agility heroes. However, he is one of the deadliest assassins thanks to his Essence Shift. Every strike of his blade steals 1 value from the enemy’s main attribute (Strength, Intelligence, or Agility) then adds it to his Agility points.
Slark can damage all enemies near him using Dark Pack and snare a target using Pounce. If all else fails, his ultimate ability can hide him and his allies in a shroud. He also has a fifth ability that lets him hide while immune from any detection items. Combining his true invisibility with his Pounce makes him a nightmare to encounter while roaming the jungle alone.
The only issue that you will encounter when using Slark is that he is easy to kill. Always remember to use Dark Pack to purge all types of debuffs then run away or reposition to get to a target that is easy for you to eliminate.
Xin, the Ember Spirit, is less reliant on the shadows because he prefers facing his enemies upfront. He prefers diving into the fray to strike as many enemies as he can then zero-in on the highest-priority target. His only defence is the armour he gets from Agility points and his Flame Guard to shield him from any magic damage.
Ember Spirit can cast Searing Chains to keep his enemies in place then strike everyone in the area using Sleight of Hand. His ultimate lets him place Fire Remnants on the ground. He can activate a Remnant from anywhere on the map then rush towards all other Remnants until he reaches his target. All remnants that he passes through burst into huge explosions.
Despite being a frontline fighter, Ember Spirit has low survivability like all Agility Heroes. Unfortunately, the nature of his fighting style makes him less effective at using lifesteal items. It’s better to invest in items that can increase his damage rather than expect him to sustain a 1v1. You can abuse his quick abilities to dodge targeting abilities or steal camp gold from an enemy jungler.
Compared to most Agility heroes, Luna, the Moon Rider, is one of the most effective duelists in Dota 2. She is reliable throughout the match thanks to her ricocheting Moon Glaive that can strike all enemies in a cluster. Her Lucent Beam deals moderate damage and stuns a target for a split second. It’s a stun only long enough to cancel a channelling ability or stop them on their tracks.
Luna becomes stronger at night thanks to Lunar Blessing. She and her allies gain additional attack damage but she gains improved vision at night. Her ultimate is Eclipse which turns daytime into nighttime then showers all nearby enemies with multiple Lucent Beams that do not inflict stun. She works great with Shadow Blade or allies that can turn her invisible because her Eclipse can still strike enemies without breaking her invisibility.
It’s easy to forget poison damage being one of everyone’s options for inflicting bonus damage in the game until it is Viper, the Netherdrake, that uses it. He is the most effective at rendering his enemies weaker by the second until everyone is too weak to fight back.
Everything Viper does inflict a stack of poison to his enemies. His auto attack, Nether Toxin, that emits a venomous cloud at an area, and his ultimate, Viper Strike, unleashes a wide-range explosion of toxins. Even receiving damage poisons his attacker thanks to his Corrosive Skin.
Viper is a great choice if you are good at avoiding conflict and attacking from afar. He is easy to kill due to lacking means of escape but he can end team fights quickly with his presence alone.
Yurnero, the Juggernaut, likes to face his enemies just like Ember Spirit. However, he is far more efficient at surviving a clash thanks to his Healing Ward that cures his injuries lightly. He is also virtually immune to any magic or physical damage once he uses Blade Fury where he spins and inflicts damage to all nearby enemies.
His true gift lies in his 3rd ability, Blade Dance, which lets him inflict critical damage on every strike. He is a monster in 1v1 skirmishes, even against Strength heroes as he can whittle down their health bar until he’s ready to deliver the final blow. His ultimate, Omnislash, is a more lethal version of Ember Spirit’s Sleight of Hand. He strikes everyone near his target, activating all on-hit effects that his items give him, including lifesteal.
Agility heroes generally have high offence but low defence so they have to keep their distance from any enemy fighters. Those that have to enter the middle of the battle have to rely on well-timed abilities to turn invulnerable or deflect incoming magic attacks. They also need ways to dispel traps to stay alive.