Ultimate guide to playing as an off lane in Dota 2

Welcome to playing as an off laner, where hard harasses and ganks occur! While it sounds challenging to play in the off lane, there’s actually a reason for that that is dependent on your hero’s mobility and utility. 

Offlane is a vague concept that explains what a hero is capable of doing in the off lane of their respective teams. For the Radiant, the off lane is at the top lane while the Dire gets the bottom lane as its off lane. 

Basically, the lane is shorter for the off lane which means that farming is not ideal. Creep waves push too high on the tower and possibility of ganks and harasses occur. It does sound like off laners will have a tough time filling their roles for their teams.

But this isn’t really the case for Dota 2 off laners. They tend to do well against heroes on their off lane and have really great builds to sustain a lane’s hard hitting attacks. What makes a great off lane and how do you play it? 

What’s an off lane role?

An off lane is one that charges or creates space, builds aura or has aura-effective skills, and looks to be more active during team fights acting as tanks in their teams. To play this role, you’ll need special skills like patience and creativity to be effective. 

Since it’s mentioned that the lane is shorter and thus more difficult to farm, it will take a lot of patience and creativity to pull off the off lane role like a champ. Farming becomes a different experience than your typical carry gameplays. It might also take you a while to get used to it. 

Challenges of an off laner 

For beginner players, off lane is a difficult role to play. The role is for more adept players who can deal with stressful situations where the health point is almost down to zero. 

In fact, most people allude to this role as the hardest out of all the positions in Dota 2. To start, a trilane is a huge possibility. Basically, a trilane is when 3 heroes appear in a lane you are also in. This means that it’s two against one and that plays an unfair disadvantage. 

This allows the opposing team to treat you more aggressively because there’s no support by your side. However, the great benefit of being on a trilane as an off lane player is getting all the gold and experience for yourself. 

Moreover, you control the whole creep units in terms of last hits and denies. This means that you control the lane despite you being the sole player for your team representing the off lane. 

Furthermore, ganks are prevalent for off laners, especially when you have heros like Spirit Breaker, Pudge, or Mirana roaming the whole map in the early game. You’re never safe, even when the enemy team dives to your tower. 

Main goals of an off laner

An off laner is often called the position 3 in Dota 2, and here are the main objectives for an off lane r to do for their teams during the game: 

  • You need to know how to play the right heroes for specific circumstances like tanks, pushers, and initiators. 
  • You need to learn how to synergise and work well with your support hero. 
  • You have to purchase auras for your team. 
  • You need to learn when the right time to start team fights and use your long-cooldown ultimate. 

These are only a few of the many responsibilities of an off laner. The overlooked role of an off laner, however, is one that you might not be too familiar with. It’s becoming a carry if your ally carry hero wasn’t able to farm well during the early game. 

How to be good as an off laner 

To become a good off laner, you need a lot of great skills as well as a perfect understanding of the game’s mechanics and your hero of choice to get the job done. Here are the aspects to consider to get better at position 3. 

Understand your role 

Reading everything above will help you understand why an off lane is needed in the first place. When you can deal so much damage and curate fights like it’s nothing, then you know you’re stepping in the right direction. 

Dominating the off lane is as important as dominating the midlane. At level 7 when you have a skill or two maxed out already plus your ultimate, then it’s going to be quite easy luring enemy teams to you and start using your skills and be effective at it. 

Your dominance will dictate how well your team does during clash fights, and you spearhead every single one to take towers with ease. 

Deny creeps

Most off laners don’t deny it because they are too focused on farming for gold instead. This is a mistake, especially when you are facing a carry hero in your lane. As much as possible. Harass the opposing carry and deny as much creeps as you can to minimise their productivity and farming. 

This provides your team an advantage going into the mid game when you are farmed while the enemy hero is not. Try to disrupt their flow when laning and they’ll have a hard time getting back into the game with very little farm and items. 

Pick the best hero for the off lane 

Each patch will have a different meta for off laners to exploit. However, below are classic off laners who are always great regardless of the update: 

  • Pudge
  • Lion
  • Ogre Magi
  • Sniper 
  • Wraith King 
  • Nature’s Prophet 
  • Beastmaster 
  • Brewmaster 
  • Puck 

These are only a portion of great off lane  heroes, each with unique abilities that make them incredibly effective and efficient when going to the off lane. Regardless of the patch, these heroes will be great no matter what. When playing Dota 2, the off laner is one who puts the team on their backs and makes a push for the late game by connecting skills with other ally heroes then winning team fights. This is their essence, and that’s what makes them so useful in teams.