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Dota 1 Beginner Guide

Dota 1 Beginner GuideWelcome to the Dota 1 Beginner Guide: This detailled and well-structured introduction will provide you with all the essentials for a good start into the game.

Beginner Guide for Dota 1 Everything you need to Know:

For new players Dota 1 can be quite overwhelming: What should you care for, what to focus on? With this piece of content playing Dota will get much easier – let’s start! 🙂

Introduction: What is Dota?

Dota is a 10 player MOBA game – MOBA stands for “Muliplayer Online Battle Arena”.
The special thing about this game is: Dota 1 has no unique client for the game itself, it’s just a mod/map of another game: To play Dota you need to have Warcraft 3 and play it via the custom game function.

Dota 1 ScreenshotIn a typical match you pick one of the 110 heroes and try to win the game together with your team in a challenging and tactical fight.

Dota is a complex game that is hard to learn, it has many stimulation aspects of interaction and allows awesome plays, this is the reason why it is so addicting for millions of players worldwide…

How Dota was born:

Dota has been created by users and not by a professional game company. The world editor of Warcraft 3 is a powerful tool and a big fanbase exists that is building highly complex custom games, which require weeks and months of work to put in.

Dota 6.83d Ai MapThe by far most famous and successfull custom map of Warcraft 3 is Dota.
It has been created mainly by Icefrog, a talented game designer. The first versions of Dota 1 were online a few months after the release of Reign of Chaos in 2002 and The Frozen Throne in 2003. With all of the patches Warcraft 3 had to offer, Dota 1 got updates very frequently and a lot of new heroes were added to the pool.

In the first few years, Dota 1 experienced an extreme hype and thousands and millions of players switched from the classic Warcraft 3 gameplay to Dota 1. This mod is extremely demanding, even if it takes weeks to learn the basics. You can spend so much time and it’s pure fun.

Dota 6.83d Ai ScreenshotWith the unexpected sucess of Dota 1 the MOBA scene was skyrocketed. Game titles like Heroes of Newerth, League of Legends, Heroes of the Storm and of course Dota 2 were born.

Steam, owned by Valve, developed a high interest in a continuation of Dota on a new game engine and made it happen to recruit Icefrog for Dota 2.

While new games were rising up, Dota 1 always had its existence, it’s still so much fun and has so much charm that thousands of players stick to the game – everyone who loves Dota 1, knows why. 😉

With the remastering of Warcraft 3 called WC3 Reforged, the story goes on, and we are able to play Dota 1 for many more years to come…

How to play Dota 1? (2020)

To play Dota 1 nowadays, you have to choose between the available options. There is no more Garena, Dota-League or Dotalicious, which allowed to play Dota 1 on a high level. But which options do you have today?

First of all, it’s necessary to have Warcraft 3 or Reforged installed and for all of the Dota maps you need different patch versions.

Best places to Play Dota 1 Today:

The following places are the best to play Dota 1 today (tested in 2020):

  • Ranked Gaming Client:

    Ranked Gaming Client for Dota 1The best way to play serious Dota 1 games is on the Ranked Gaming Client (RGC).

    Just download the client, start it and join the LAN network to see the games. You will get a list of a lot of Dota games, you can download the Dota RGC maps in this list.

  • Play Dota Ai vs Bots:

    This is a very famous and often requested way to play Dota. The bots in Dota Ai are quite smart and you can play great games. Dota Ai is also nice to learn the game and to get better. You can find all of the Dota Ai maps here.

  • Play LAN vs Friends:

    This is a great way to play with your friends: Just play on LAN, it works out of the box in Warcraft 3 Reforged. If you want to play classic WC3, all players must have the same Warcraft 3 patch version. Checkout Lancraft to get help with playing Lan in the old WC3 client.

  • Battle.net:

    Warcraft 3 Reforged Dota ScreenshotJust try out joining a match inside the Battle.net in Warcraft 3 Reforged. Choose between the classic and the reforged graphics and then jump into a match that fits for you. Check the mode and the players, search high skilled games to play without leavers.

    It might take about 5 minutes to get a game full, but this is the easiest way to simply play Dota 1. It’s not very serious and players might leave, so consider RGC.

  • Iccup:

    On Iccup you can play great custom games, it’s more mixed up, but there also is a medium sized community, where you can always find more serious Dota players compared to Battle.net. Just download the software on iccup.com, run it and the client will throw you directly onto the server! The community is very russian based, try out your luck if it works out for you.Dota 1 Lobby Custom Games

  • Eurobattle.net:

    This website looks like a community forum, which is based in europe and allows to play high level Dota and custom games. Just download the Eurobattle.net Installer, run the software called xpam and the client opens.

    Now choose between WC3 patch 1.28 and 1.26. Patch 1.28 is perfect for custom games and 1.26 is perfect to play Dota 1: Then Warcraft 3 automatically starts, if it is installed correctly, and you can simply join the Battle.net.XPAM Client for Dota 1

Get the perfect Hotkeys for Warcraft 3 Dota 1:

Dota 1 Customkeys.txt Download:

Dota 1 Customkeys (QWEASZ)EnglishDownload
Now Place the Customkeys into the correct Warcraft 3 path:

For WC3 Reforged:
C:\Users\username\Documents\Warcraft III Beta\CustomKeyBindings

For WC3 Reforged (OneDrive users):
C:\Users\username\OneDrive\Documents\Warcraft III Beta\CustomKeyBindings

For more details, read the complete Dota 1 customkeys tutorial. 🙂

Dota 1 Key Game Mechanics:

As a beginner it’s important to learn the basic laws of Dota nature and the game mechanics. Spend time with heroes you love to play and improve your knowledge of the following topics.

1. The Dota Map:

The Dota map is where the battle is happening: Divided by the middle lake, the two sides Sentinel and Scourge fight against each other on three lanes: These three lanes called top lane, mid lane and bottom lane create the basic layout for the 10 heroes to find a tactical line-up like in a soccer match.

Dota 1 Three LanesWhile the mid lane is mainly played as a solo lane, Dota is not limited to any rules, but it has turned out that two dual lanes on the top and bottom lanes, or a combined jungler are the best possible scenarios.
As you start with Dota 1, it’s smart to stick to known and stable tactics instead of going for your own way. This should be done at a later stage.

Runes, Shops, Creeps and Roshan on the Dota 2 Map:

Dota 1 Runes In the middle river, every 2 minutes and starting with the 2:00 minute mark, a random rune spawns at one of the sides in the middle. These runes are action runes and can be equipped to get an instant effect or you can bottle the rune to use it later and fill up the bottle.

On the map are 3 types of shops: The base shops, the secret shops and the side lane shops. In each of them, you are able to buy specific items and both sides have the same conditions to reach the shops to get items from.

Neutral CreepsCreeps are units, that can belong to one of the teams or are neutral. The lane creeps spawn with the 0:00 game timer and spawn again every 30 seconds until the end of the game. These lane creeps spawn on both sides and meet in the middle dependent on the push amount.
On top of that, in the jungle neutral creeps exist, that you can take down to get extra gold and xp. The strongest and ultimate neutral creep is called Roshan the Immortal, which normally needs to be taken by the full team to get him down fast. Roshan is located in the river and drops the items Aegis of the Immortal and Cheese.Dota 1 Roshan Reforged

2. Dota Heroes and Item Basics:

Heroes have a main attribute which can be agility, intelligence or strength. Find all of the 110 Dota heroes here to get an overview.

Dota ItemsThe main attribute is the one you need to focus on when getting items: Improving the agility stats on agility heroes will automatically increase their damage, while giving the main facors as well (more attackspeed and a higher armor).
And this is one of the best lessons when starting with Dota: Buy the right items, that perfectly fit for your hero and the game. Do you need to escape a lot? Get a Force Staff, like that you can even help allies. Do you need to be offensive? A Lothar’s Edge or Dagon could be great.

And if that specific item is also fitting for your main attribute and is helping you in the right way (getting hp, getting armor or getting a bigger mana pool) then this is a perfect item. Before you buy items, always consider all of these factors.

Dota Hero SpellsHero Basics: As you know every hero in general has 3 spells and 1 ultimate spell that he can skill on lvl 6.

To get the most out of your hero, get one of the spells onto LVL 4 as fast as you can, this is possible on the hero LVL 7.

Sometimes also consider skilling the stats attribute instead of picking a spell, stats are often underestimated by beginners in Dota. Example: An ultimate orb is worth 2100 gold with +10 to all stats, that’s like skilling 5 times the stats bonus. 😉

3. Tactical Actions to perform in Dota 1:

Tactical Action:Meaning:
PushingTaking down enemy objectives like towers and barracks to make the game more intense. Fewer towers will keep your enemy under pressure.
FarmingFarming is all about making gold – The main aspects of having a high income is about killing creeps through lasthitting.
Pulling/StackingPulling means to attract the allied creeps towards a jungle camp to reduce the amount of XPM and GPM of the enemy. Stacking is to increase the number of creeps in a jungle camp.
HarassingHarassing is about putting pressure on to an enemy hero by pushing him away or making a lot of damage over time.
GankingGrouping one or more enemies and executing an offensive move. In the early game, it is primarily done by the roamer.
RoamingRoamers wander around and try to gang the enemy hero. Through this technique the enemy is under permanent pressure, because he never knows when the roamer will engange.
SupportingSupports keeps their allies alive and create map vision through wards. Position 4 and 5 are the support position (one for the safe lane and one for the offlane).
WardingPlacing wards on the map gives the team vision and sentry wards also give vision for invisible units.
JunglingIf you are farming creeps in the jungle it’s called jungling, this can be done as a complete role, or between creep waves on the lane – especially when the supporters have stacked creep camps to increase the GPM.
ScoutingScouting is mostly performed by invisible heroes such as Riki, Bounty Hunter, and Clinkz. However, late-game scouting is quite dangerous. The whole map can be filled with sentry wards.

Dota 1 Beginner Tips
for a Sucessful Start:

Here are some essentials that will create the foundation of beeing a good teamplayer in Dota, that knows what he is doing:

Pick Dota Heroes that are Easy to Play:

When a Dota game starts, it’s time to pick one of the 110 heroes and this is set for the rest of the game. While some heroes are harder to play, as a beginner it is smart to stick to the easy one that can be executed well to the maximum power.
Some heroes are just straight-forward and need no complex introduction and testing:

  • Dota 1 Hero OverviewSupport heroes like Crystal Maiden and Shadow Shaman, got a lot of spells which are easy to place, it’s clear how a nova, frost block, shackle, hex or lightning bolt is working, everyone will understand the heroes out of the box.
    While it still takes time to master these, you will reach a good first level super fast with these heroes, because you understand them completely.
  • Tanks like Slardar and Viper, are also super simple: They do strong hits, Slardar has a stun, Viper has a poison ultimate, but that’s basically it. They have a lot of sustain due to their high hp and you won’t die easily.
  • Also try out Dragonknight, he can stun and use Breath of Fire as well as having a dragon form. He is super tanky with his hp healing spell and a good choice for any Dota beginner.

Learn to be a Teamplayer:

Dota 1 TeamplayerActing together in Dota is key to win games. Some players love to solo and to play on their own, but in the end it’s a team game and the side who is performing better together and is embracing the power of all 5 players will win the game.
Try to gang and check for wise decisions how teammates could profit from your spells.

Care for your KDA:

Improve your KDA ratio (KDA means Kill-Death-Assist ratio). The KDA of Dota beginners often is like 3-10-10, now improve a bit and try to die less and to increase your assists:
To die less, play more carefully and get more hp, consider buying a bracer early on and power treats with strength, this can change so much.
To increase your assists, be everywhere and join every fight, but do it smartly, just have some input with your spells, but stay outside and don’t go all-in.
Don’t try to steal any hero kills, except you are a hard carry.

Protect towers and your base:

Always wear a teleport scroll with you and be ready to defend. You will win more games if you defend all towers and help to defend the base. Towers mean map control and lost towers mean less map control.

Learn all Heroes and Spells in Dota and Play all Roles:

Learn all heroes and spells, like that you will feel comfortable and self-confident when playing on a lane. To get to this point, try to test all roles: support, offlane and carry heroes.
I don’t know how long it takes to know every hero, item and spell, but I think it didn’t take me more than a few months of Dota addiction. 😀

Ignore Flamers:

Especially for beginners, it’s quite hard to deal with flamers, no one wants to play with noobs in Dota, but everyone started at someday. Every newcomer will be called a noob, just ignore it and get better, also consider playing Dota Ai vs bots to avoid flamers and problems in higher ranked matches.

How to get better in Dota 1:

Here are three simple tips that will improve your performance in Dota superfast! 😉

3 Tips for a Dota 1 Kickstart:

  • Get good with 3-5 heroes, get really good with them and play them over and over again. Know everything in and out about them and build the perfect items with them. Also, be flexible with them and try around with different items. You will have enough skill soon to mess with others.
  • Pick one specific main role: Are you a support, carry, offlane or mid player? Test every role but in the end, choose one main role and stick to it – master it.
    Tip: Have at least 1 hero for each role to increase your flexibility.
  • Start to make the right decisions, focus on getting better and improving your skill. Don’t rush with the head through the wall and do it again and again. Think before you move and also ask what went wrong if you died. Reflection and learning from mistakes is one of the most important rules in Dota.

That’s it! 🙂 I hope you liked the Dota 1 beginner guide and there was something in for you. Have a lot of fun with the best game ever and own your lane, my friend!

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