- Alt-Tab Guide
- General Information
- Special Mention: "Shift + Blink" Technique
- Skill Builds
- Item Builds
- Allies - Enemies - Countering Items
- Last Words
I've been playing DotA for almost 4 years but still, I've not made any guide yet. With my little knowledge about my most favorite hero - Sand King, I want to contribute for DotA community my very first guide. Any advice and suggestions are highly appreciated.
I hope you will like my guide and it shall help you to understand and improve your skills when playing this hero.
Released long time ago, Sand King is considered one of the most stable heroes and the best initiator in DotA. He can deal a lot of damage in a large area more than most. All abilities of his can deal damages to multiple enemy units. He has both escaping and initiating abilities in just 1 skill, Burrow Strike. Sand Storm can keep him invisible and confuse the enemies while still damaging them every second. Caustic Finale can destroy any creep waves with ease. His famous ultimate, Epicenter, is one of the most deadly and devastating ability, a real nightmare in every teamfight. His entrance is usually his most powerful element, best executed when most of the enemy team are crumpled up together, trying his best to deal as much damage as possible while inflicting slow or stun status effects upon them.
|Spell Type||Targeting Type||Effected units||Hotkey|
|The Sand King burrows into the ground and tunnels forward, impaling everything above him, then resurfaces.|
|Level||Mana Cost||Cooldown||Casting Range||AoE||Duration||Effects|
|1||110||11 sec||350||150||1.65 sec||Deals 100 damage and stuns for 1.65 seconds.|
|2||120||11 sec||450||150||1.65 sec||Deals 160 damage and stuns for 1.65 seconds.|
|3||130||11 sec||550||150||1.65 sec||Deals 220 damage and stuns for 1.65 seconds.|
|4||140||11 sec||650||150||1.65 sec||Deals 280 damage and stuns for 1.65 seconds.|
- Burrow Strike's damage type is magical.
- Burrow Strike deals damage to all units that are on its path and stun them for 1.65 sec.
- Sand King while using Burrow Strike can dodge most single-targeting spells such as Magic Missile or even Stormbolt.
- Burrow Strike tosses the units on the air for 0.52 sec. After that, the damage and the stun will be applied on affected units.
- Burrow Strike doesn't go through BKB but is not blocked by Linken's Sphere.
- Deals good amount of damage.
- Decent stunning time.
- Good dodging/escaping/chasing/initial tool.
How to use Burrow Strike?
- Mana cost is pretty high for a Strength hero.
- 150 AoE is not large, it's easy to miss if you're not choose good positions.
- Casting range is not so far so you may have to reveal yourself to your enemies before using it.
- Initiating: probably this is the first usage of Burrow Strike. Thanks to its 650 casting range, you can stun your enemies from afar. But remember to choose positions wisely or else you will miss it and waste your mana. If the enemies are crowed, watch carefully and choose the best position to land your stun perfectly. The best is catching all your enemies in one stun or at least catching the most dangerous ones.
- Escaping: you can use it to make your distance between you and the chasing enemies longer by 650 range. Or even you can burrow from low ground to high ground or the opposite, through the trees or edges... There are so much way to escape with Burrow Strike.
- Dodging spells:this requires your micro. When you see an enemy throw a spell to you, you can burrow to him if your HP is high or you have backup, or you can burrow away to flee from him. This can only be applied when the spells are triggered but not hit you yet. The stun's effect still appears above your head (with some spell like Magic Missile) but you're not stunned for any second.
- Chasing: too obvious usage, I think I don't have to mention about this one.
- Mastering Burrowstrike:
I think I should mention about it clearly since this skill is not easy to use like it seems. Many will think Burrowstrike is like Impale, the difference between them is that SK will move to the targeted spot and stun the enemies. But it's not just simple like that. Unlike Impale, when you click on the unit (such as heroes), it will detect whether that unit is in the range or not, if it's in the allowed range of Burrowstrike, the spell will be activated and stun it, if not, it won't be activated and SK will go after that unit until it gets in the range of Burrowstrike and stun it. Sometimes, it's OK to click on the units, but in many cases, clicking on the ground will be much better especially when you're chasing someone. Remember, when you're chasing someone, DON'T EVER CLICK ON THAT UNIT because you will always Burrowstrike right behind it, you need to aim a bit ahead in the direction of the fleeing enemies.
Let the Blue Ball represent the Sand King and the Red Ball Represent an enemy Hero who is fleeing. In this situation, you have to click ahead of the unit, at the green X, or you will Burrowstrike not far enough. This spell is NOT like Impale, where you can target it and it (usually) can't miss.
Another thing that make Burrowstrike better than other stuns is its ability that helps SK get through terrain, moving uphill and downhill, through the cliffs with ease. Everyone that plays SK should know about this. These picture below are good examples.
- Bad Burrowstrike:
SPECIAL MENTION: "SHIFT + BLINK" TECHNIQUE
I think I should make this session since many people play Sand King a lot but still haven't known this technique yet. This is a "must - have" technique for every Sand King user because you can have so many benefits from it.
It's pretty simple and only takes you a few time practicing.
First of all, you need to look at the position that you want to be in and choose the best position o start your Epicenter. Then follow these steps:
- Press "C" key to activate Epicenter.
- Click "Shift" button and then click on Blink Dagger quickly while SK is channeling Epicenter.
- Wait for Sand King to finish waving his tail the second time then click on position that you want to land the Epicenter.
Remember, you have to wait until he finish waving his time the second tale, or else you will blink in without your ultimate and that will be a disaster!
Here is a video of "Shift + Blink" Sand King. I think you may learn something from it.
Lvl 1 Burrow Strike
Lvl 2 Sand Storm
Lvl 3 Burrow Strike
Lvl 4 Sand Storm
Lvl 5 Burrow Strike
Lvl 6 Epicenter
Lvl 7 Burrow Strike
Lvl 8 Sand Storm
Lvl 9 Sand Storm
Lvl 10 Caustic Finale
Lvl 11 Epicenter
Lvl 12 Caustic Finale
Lvl 13 Caustic Finale
Lvl 14 Caustic Finale
Lvl 15 Stats
Lvl 16 Epicenter
Lvl 17 - 25 Stats
This build is considered standard build for Sand King in competitive games. Maxing Burrow Strike since it's your best skill, no need to explain it. Taking Epicenter at lvl 6, 11 and 16 is not needed to explain. Why max Sand Storm? This skill gives you so many benefits. Sand King is a ganker, support and initiator so he spends most of his time roaming, supporting and ganking. Sand Storm will save you when your HP is low, dodging everything thrown to you and also mess your enemies up when they're laning with you. You won't farm much so Caustic Finale is not so needed, and as I said above, taking it early will push your lane too high. Take it after maxing Burrow Strike and Sand Storm because at that level (9 or 10), you will have to push a lot so Caustic Finale will help you to kill creeps faster.
Since you can fit many roles, you and your mates must decide which role you will take in order to choose lanes or you.
- Solo lane - Solo mid: try to last-hit and deny as much as possible and reach lvl 6 as fast as you can so that you can start ganking effectively. Don't risk yourself for a last-hit if you're facing dangerous enemies. Your level is much important than your items, if you get levels, you can gank and it will give you money.
- Dual - tri lane: that mostly means you choose support role. There are much more things to do when you choose this role. Stacking, pulling creep camps to farm, warding some potential spots, keeping your enmies away from your carry... You must move a lot and you can barely farm. Keep your attention on the minimap, if there is any posible gank, you should go there to support.
Remember, always watch the minimap! Map awareness is always necessary.
At the end of this phase, you must have at least Boots of Speed. Always carry some salves, tangoes and clarities in case you need regen.
ALLIES - ENEMIES - COUNTERING ITEMS
I've still not found any good Sand King replays. MaNia's and 357's Sand King replays are too old, I can't download them.
I'll appreciate if anyone can give me some.
BIG THANKS TO:
I want to thank you all for reading my guide. If it's mistaken or missing something, if you have any advice or suggestions, please tell. All are highly appreciated.
Lycan: for reminding me about some tips to use Burrow Strikes and of course, publishing my guide.
bohunzg and lomachaol: for reminding me about Pugna's ward as well as the Blink techique.