Dota 2 Guide: Start winning every match with Pudge
Pudge is the most popular hero since Dota’s inception back in the year 2003. The hero’s total matches count to 735,779,009 with pick-rate of 34.94% in Dota 2. Phantom Assassin is the second-most picked hero with a pick-rate of 25.22% which is not even close to Pudge.
Pudge is a melee strength hero. He is as an offlaner but one can play him as a successful roamer or in the middle lane as well.
Playstyle in current meta
Pudge is excellent in the current meta. He is often a great first-pick hero and one can play him in multiple lanes. Flesh-Heap and Rot are a priority in the laning phase. The additional regeneration and strength are ample to sustain in the lane. The first level in Flesh Heap goes well because the hero has very little armour and takes a lot of harass.
The first point in Flesh Heap gives the hero a +6 HP regeneration and bonus +1 strength. One should take the second point in Rot which is the second ability of the hero. Level 4 will mark a single point in first ability Hook. Sometimes a unique situation may arise where it is mandatory to level up hook early to secure a kill.
At level 6 the hero should have level in Hook, 2 levels in Rot, 2 levels in Flesh Heap and 1 level in Dismember. After level 6, one should focus on maxing Rot and Flesh Heap and then switch to level up Hook.
The playstyle of Pudge is very aggressive since he has a lot of sustain. The hero can use Rot and right-click to inflict damage. One can contest bounties, initiate fights and be active around the map. The massive health-pool and damage of the hero will be a pain to deal with for the enemy team.
Pudge has a lot of natural sustain, he is tanky with a lot of health. However, the hero lacks armour and thus takes a lot of physical damage. To combat that one should start lanes with a set of Tangos, a Stout Shield and a couple of Ironwood branches. Later, one can buy a Ring of Protection and complete a Ring of Basilius or Urn of shadows depending on the game. Other small items which are famous on the hero are Bracers and Magic Wand. Phase Boots is the most common boots of choice. It gives armour and bursts of movement speed which Pudge needs.
Pudge is weak to magical damage. Now that Flesh Heap no longer gives resistance against magic damage, items like Hood into a Pipe are great options. Other common mid-game items include a Blink Dagger, Spirit Vessel, Crimson Guard, Blade Mail etc. Late game items are enemy hero-dependent and situational. Some common late-game items include Shiva’s Guard, Heart, Ethereal Blade, Scythe of Vyse etc.
Please note that it is not recommended to make mana regeneration and mana pool items. Items like Aether Lens are useless on Pudge in this meta. Winning with Pudge is simple, tank a lot of damage and make space for your cores. The hero does incredible amounts of damage which is a big plus point.
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