Say Hello To My Little Friend
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I have though of writing a guide for a long time, but wasn't sure if I was ready. I wasn't confident enough, thought that my skills are not worth passing on to anyone.
At first, I was going to write a guide about Ogre Magi, but I stumbled upon a very clean, organized already, so I decided to move on to Huskar.
Another motive for writing this guide, is the fact that there's only 1 guide about him I will try to make this hero fun to play for new and old players, make him more a more popular pick in competitive and public games alike.
Huskar is often picked as an early-game dominator, famous for his burning spear. But due to his sadomasochistic (mostly masochistic) style of play, he's not very popular amongst competitive players, since he's like a double edged blade. Huskar is a hero who is hard to play, but often concidered a very easy hero to play. This is a common mistake, because he's a hero that requiers a lot more caution and awareness than you think. A single mistake can result in a painful aftermath. Huskar is a strength hero, with a mix of agility, which makes him a good semi-carry, semi-tank. Very agile, also fragile. One of many heroes that requires a lot of skill, and a whole lot of guts.
• ranged strength hero
• low starting strength
As you can see, he has more pros than cons, but his cons have a bigger impact on him, his style of play, the game on general.
This skill updates itself every second, so don't just wait till your hit points drop to 40%.
• use right before initiating
Huskar's primary harassment and dps tool. Very powerful early-mid game. Orb-walking (refer here for it's meaning) with Burning Spears allows you to dominate in no time, but beware, that if the enemy take a more aggresive aproach to your harassment, then you're as good as dead. Use Burning Spears as a fear factor tool more ofthen than a harassment tool. Stay on a parallel line with enemy ranged creeps if possible, to prevent them from farming. More will be explained in the Gameplay section.
Very powerful for counter-ganking/soloing someone. This is what makes this troll Huskar. With enough items, he can keep his HP at a constant low level without being nuked to death. Even if this skill is percentage based, meaning that it'll give the same bonuses early and late game, Huskar's starting strength is so low, that when his HP drops to about 40%, it takes just 2 nukes to kill him. With right items, we can make full use of this spell, wrecking havoc across the battlefield
Powerful single target nuke, which activates Berserker's Blood if leveled up. The slow will give you enough time to throw in a dozen of Burning Spears. This is your main initiating spell. This is the priority of targets for using Life Break:
Level 1 Burning Spear
Level 2 Inner Vitality
Level 3 Burning Spear
Level 4 Inner Vitality
Level 5 Burning Spear
Level 6 Life Break
Level 7 Burning Spear
Level 8 Berserker's Blood
Level 9 Berserker's Blood
Level 10 Berserker's Blood
Level 11 Life Break
Level 12 Berserker's Blood
Level 13 Inner Vitality
Level 14 Inner Vitality
Level 15 Stats
Level 16 Life Break
JustificationBurning Spear is taken at level 1, in case of rune fights, and nearly everyone knows, that soloing a Huskar at level 1 is a bad idea. Burning Spear is maxed out first for obvious reasons.
The most debatable question is whether to take Inner Vitality or Berserker's Blood. I personally go for Inner Vitality, since it gives you survivability, and lets you stay in lane longer. With berserker's blood you are a glowing "i am at low hp with huge damage" sign. If enemies even see you at 60% hp, they're not gonna be taking you as a potential threat, but as a potential successful gank target.
In this build I take 2 levels of Inner Vitality first, as 1 level is just not worth 170 mana. At level 8 you're gonna be needing that boost in damage and attack speed, so we'll max out Berserker's Blood then.
Life Break is our main ganking (only with an ally)/counter-ganking spell, so we'll take it whenever possible. This is the safe-build, but you use a different build, whichever works best.
- they give you 6 strength (114 HP), allows you to cast roughly extra 7 burning spears
- cheap stats
- for holding out in the lane
- for a quick comeback after a failed enemy kill attempt
- to regenerate some mana after using Inner Vitality
- this is the first item that you will be aiming for. It's the best of the 4 boots that you can get. Most of the time you will be orb-walking, so phase boots is not good. You can use a little bit more movement speed, but you just can't affort to waste a lot of time farming BoT. Arcane only gives you mana, which you don't need. Treads is the best choice for Huskar, as you can switch to Int form, use Inner Vitality, switch back to Str form. Attack speed is viable for quicker orb-walking.
- best out of 3 basic stat boosters. Works well for Inner Vitality, damage is always needed for you.
- Probably the best core item for Huskar. Attack speed and damage is never wasted on him, and the additional 25 str for a 35 degen is totally worth it. But always remember to follow these orders: Inner Vitality => Life Break => Turn on Armlet. If you turn on armlet BEFORE using life break, you will lose half of your hp bar (not reduced yet), but if you follow the orders stated above, you lose hp, gain 25 str, which is like healing yourself by 475 HP.
- you should get this after you've acquired Treads and Armlet. This is probably the best item in the game, concidering the fact that it can be used effectively by nearly any hero. In Huskar's case, it allows you to get up close and personal with the unlucky target. Autocast Burning Spear => Inner Vitality => Blink in => Life Break => Turn on Armlet => finish him off. This combination will finish off nearly every spellcaster WITHOUT a disable. If you decide to jump in and ambush a disabler, think twice before doing so, as it may result in a counter-gank. As always, it's also an escape tool.
- carry these to gank effectively. A must for nearly all heroes.
- If you have all your core items, aim for this ASAP. This all-round item gives you good amount of hit points to spam Life Break, enough mana for Inner Vitality. You ultimate is now a bigger pain in the neck for your opponents, since 65% of current HP is not a small number.
- best HP-granting item. This is a must-item for nearly every strength hero. Allows Huskar to keep his HP at a low level without such a threat to his life.
- a useful item for any hero. Allows you to disable a hero for 3.5 seconds, which is a really high number late-game. Get this if you can afford it.
- I consider this item situational, since the only thing that it reduces is Life Break. It can still be used to survive some nukes though. Get it if you have trouble with spammers/gankers.
- rather situational, since Huskar's style is to kill swiftly and effectively. You do not want to draw aggro and tower dive, so this is not the best item for huskar, but quite useful against DPS carries.
- get this if there you are having trouble with nukers and carries on the opposing team.
- allows you to jump in and ambush disablers, without being affraid of anything. Works best if targeting a hero with only 1 disable. Not that efficient in team clashes though.
- a much safer variant of Linken Sphere, that provides more damage, with a tradeof in mana. Get this if the opposing team has 2 or more disablers.
- orbs, though don't stack can still be used for arrow-based-spell-carrying-heroes (i.e. Drow Ranger), but on Huskar, they just have no use, concidering their high price.
SPECIAL MENTION: Helm of the Dominator vs Burning Spears is a very touchy matter. It's been a debatable topic since forever. But if you buy HotD, you'll lose your 112 damage spear, lose 1850 gold, gain 20 damage 5 armor, 15% life steal. I hardly see the point, except upgrading it to Satanic. But Satanic costs even more than Heart, so I'd go for Heart instead.
- this item is bad for a lot of heroes, especially with it's high price, and Huskar's not an exception.
- your longest cooldown spell is Inner Vitality (25 seconds). Life Break doesn't count, since it's most likely that you get it after level 16, concidering that Huskar is not a farmer.
- a very very bad choice for Huskar. With it's price, you can get a dagger instead.
- even though Huskar hits hard and hits fast, basher is not viable for him, since Life Braking and throwing in a couple of Burning Spears is enough to kill most of the heroes.
Early game is the time for Huskar to shine. Try to be aggressive, but not too aggressive. If your opponents don't have a choice, they'll just run towards you an try to inflict as much damage as they can, which in most situations result in Huskar's death. Throw a couple of spears, grab a creep, deny every single creep that reaches 49% hp. Apply more mental pressure than physical. Never ever right click on an enemy. Always orb-walk to cancel your animation (Huskar has a rather long attack animation backswing). Orb-walking allows you to harass effectively without drawing creep aggro, and llows you to stack more hits (backswing, missclicking happens). Staying on a parallel line with a ranged creep will automatically increase your fear factor, making opponents lose time lane-switching or call for ganks. Be extremely cautious when staying high on the lane. If you see an enemy hero going for a last hit/deny, scare him off with spears. Beware that throwing too much Burning Spears drains out your life drastically fast. You should focus on last hitting to get your power treads. Always check if your ally needs healing, never hesitate saving your ally.
If you managed to farm at least a part of your core items, it's time for you to go with an ally and wreck some havoc. It's best if you can go with a disabler. Always try to sneak up from behind the enmy while your ally is distracting him, Life Break and grab the kill. The rest of the money for your items will mostly poor in from ganks like this. If you manage to get a blink dagger, then grabbing kills will be much easier. If there's no action going on, grab a few creep kills. During this stage, instead of going home just switch your treads to int form, use Inner Vitality, switch back treads to str form, continue ganking. Remember to autocast arrows before using life break, but when the enemy gets to about 300 range away from you, start orb-walking immediately. Don't forget to activate armlet after Life Break.
This is the stage, where team clashes are a common sight, and where a slight mistake can change the gameflow. If you have all your core items, then this stage will be a real pain in the neck for your opponents. There are 2 ways you can fight in a teamclash:
1) Blink in first with Inner Vitality, Life Break someone and autoattack, hoping that your allies will follow up.
2) Stand back a bit, wait for the enemy supporters to show up, wait for at least 1 hero of each team begin charging at each other, blink in behind the enemy supporter and proffit.
I prefer the second option, but it may sound easy on paper. Sometimes, either you get anticipated, or the enemy disables you just before the final blow. It's best to choose a target, whose role is disabling your ally, not you. If you do so, then he'll waste that disable on you to save his life, giving an opening for your allies to rush in. Also, remember to cast Inner Vitality before initiating.
- initiators have a tendency of drawing a lot of attention. With them being baits, you can grab some easy kills behind the enemy lines.
- healers are everyone's friends.
SPECIAL MENTION: Omniknight allows you to blink in without the fear of being disabled (beware of Diffusal Blade, Stoen Gaze).
- orb-walking combo. Melee heroes on your lane wouldn't get the chance to farm at all. Although you have ultra-high lane control like this, you are still vurnernable to disables (in case of laning with Drow Ranger, silence will solve the problem)
- low on HP? Death pulse. Want a kill? Life Break + Reaper's Scythe.
- this newly introduced hero allows you to chase/surprise your opponents effectively. With this guy, ganking will not be a problem anymore.
- this old man is more sadistic than huskar himself. He'll just spam Death Pulse when he sees you, and if you try to fight back, Reaper's Scythe will end your misery.
- he'll take all your skills like a man, doom you, slice you, burn you and put you out of your misery, hard.
- the less hp you have, the more damage you have, but that also works for this guy. If you think you can harass him to death with burning spears, he'll give you a taste of your own medicie with poison attack. If orb-walked properly, you won't even have the chance to get close to him. Be careful when laning against him.
- Time Lapse will solve every problem. Out-dpsing this one is not a good idea.