[Top 10] Dota 2 Best Heroes For New Players (Dota 2 Heroes for Beginners)

Dota 2 Best Beginners Heroes
Ice Cold Support

What Are The Best Dota 2 Heroes for Beginners?

Dota 2’s roster of 116 heroes can seem overwhelming for new players, let's bring that number down to 10.

The mechanics of Dota are unique and plentiful and the best way to approach the game is first by playing and second by looking up information. This guide will provide some places new players can find information they will need as well as a small guide for each beginner hero.

If new to Dota 2 one of the best places to begin is with the roles:

Position 1 – Otherwise known as the Carry is a damage dealing farmer that needs protection early then brings team to victory later. Examples: Anti-Mage, Phantom Assassin, Sniper.

Position 2 – Semi-Carry, generally the solo Mid hero, holds the team together usually bringing early damage or stability to fights, has flash farming capabilities but takes less time to become useful than the Position 1. Examples: Shadow Fiend, Queen of Pain, Invoker, Dragon Knight.

Position 3 – Usually the Off-Lane hero, these heroes get fewer farm priority and generally their function is to soak up experience then use their powerful spells to help control team fights. Examples: Tidehunter, Enigma, Clockwerk, Bristleback, Night Stalker.

Position 4 – Greedy support, this is a support hero that wants specific items early then can be relegated to picking up further support items or wards. Examples: Sand King, Lion, Omniknight.

Position 5 – Hard support, this is a hero that focuses entirely on enabling his teammates to farm and devotes their net worth into support items almost exclusively. Examples: Bane, Crystal Maiden, Ogre Magi.

It is highly recommended to spend some time understanding how the items function as well as the heroes, though this is a monumental task due to the amount of information needed to take in the Dota 2 wiki has the full compendium. Fortunately Dota has built in item guides for heroes and it is highly advisable that new players follow the default item list suggested until the player can understand what items are required in what situations. In addition, especially if playing a 4 or 5, it is important to look at an updated stacking, pulling, and warding guide.

10. Phantom Assassin

Phantom Assassin is squishy and quite vulnerable to nuke damage, try to avoid picking her if running into heavy magic damage heroes like Lina, Lion, etc. She is extremely powerful and has few buttons to need to worry about, making her quite easy for beginners as they don’t have to worry about using a bunch of abilities. She has a mobility option in her W but it requires you to be aware of where your allies are. Play Phantom Assassin as a 1 or 2.

Stifling Dagger – Throw a ranged version of one of your standard right clicks, but add a movement speed slow and vision on the target. Low cooldown, low mana cost, enables lane harass and because the ability scales with your attack damage it is never a poor option and should always be a go to.

Phantom Strike – Teleport towards an enemy and gain bonus attack speed enabling ganking and dealing heavy damage in fights.

Blur – A decent chunk of right clicks against you can just miss, you could also activate this ability to be invisible if no enemy heroes or towers are near.

Coup de Grace – Hit hard. One of the best ways to play Phantom Assassin involves assuming you won’t get a crit with this ability, then being surprised when you do. If a gank would require several of these crits sometimes it's best to just not go for it and risk dying yourself.

Basic Tips on Playing Phantom Assassin

  • Spam Stifling Dagger in lane as much as possible to keep enemies low to allow for potential kills.
  • Teleporting to an ally using Phantom Strike can take you out of the effective ranges of enemy heroes is also a valid option to staying alive.
  • Try and dodge spells cast against you because there is a small delay before you are revealed when using the active of Blur.
  • Evasion from other items have diminishing returns with Blur.
  • Black King Bar is one of the most important items on this hero as she is quite vulnerable without it.
  • Early Wraith Bands help shore up her weaknesses in the early parts of the game.

9. Dragon Knight

Extremely stable hero, Dragon Knight is hard to take down due to his massive tanking capabilities. Generally played as a Position 2, although it is not unheard of for Dragon Knight to be played as a Position 1. This hero wants to get initiation items such as Shadow Blade and then tank up and build damage in that order.

Breathe Fire – AoE nuke that reduces damage dealt by enemies hit by it, great for maintaining farm in lane as well as harassing and dealing damage in early team fights.

Dragon Tail – Dragon Knight’s best ability, this is a quick casting stun and is what allows him to be a great initiator and ganker.

Dragon Blood – Free armor and health regen, feel unkillable in lane and double these effects later in the game to forever feel tanky.

Elder Dragon Form – This ability has several stages that all make Dragon Knight extremely strong, almost as if he’s a Dragon or something. Level 1 gives his attacks an extra DoT component that works on towers. Level 2 adds splash damage which helps farm and deal more damage in fights. Level 3 adds a movement and attack speed slow to keep enemies in range.

Basic Tips on Playing Dragon Knight

  • A couple of early Braces can help make him a beast in the laning stage.
  • Keep in mind Breathe Fire can give an advantage in CS by lowering the enemy’s base damage allowing you to out out deny them.
  • Try not to leave your lane if you can afford to as if the enemy leaves the lane first you can use Level 1 Elder Dragon Form to push down the tower.
  • Dragon Tail has a longer cast range if in Elder Dragon Form so when ganking try to make sure you’re already a dragon.

8. Sniper

Don’t have to worry about being attacked if nothing can get in range to attack you. The difficulty of playing Sniper comes from knowing what position you have to be in to have maximal effect in fights – you want to be far away preferably up a hill or otherwise obscured from your enemies and just throwing down damage at them. Sniper also suffers from lack of mobility and being quite squishy but his crazy range and damage output makes him extremely easy for beginners that like to right click their enemies down. Sniper is generally a Position 2.

Shrapnel – This ability has charges so keep an eye on how many you have at one point. All enemies in the effect of this spell take damage per second and are slowed.

Headshot – Free bonus damage on your right clicks along with a slow, enjoy.

Take aim – Free bonus range on your attacks, makes you feel like no one can get to you, can be activated to double the range bonus provided for an attack.

Assassinate – Massive range to cast this spell then a massive nuke after a channel time, great for finishing off enemies.

Basic Tips on Playing Sniper

  • Multiple Wraith Bands early in the game can help increase Sniper’s ability to harass and last hit.
  • Headshot can help you deny your own creeps.
  • Shrapnel gives you vision on the area you use it on allowing you to see an escaping enemy and get in a few more right clicks or even start your Ult on them.
  • Because of Headshot it is highly effective to build Attack Speed on Sniper.
  • Aghanim’s Scepter and high damage items can make for easy fun kills but watch out for Blademail.

7. Night Stalker

A beginner can be the hunted or choose to hunt. Night Stalker is a tanky hero that is one of the most fun gankers in the entire game to play and one of the easiest. His high health pool enables him to dive towers easy and take punishment with minimal fear, allowing even new players to push the limits. The difficulty with playing Night Stalker comes with understanding that there is a Day and Night cycle in Dota 2 and keeping a sense of awareness of when Night or Day is coming and when you’re strong or weak. Thankfully his Ult can turn Day into Night temporarily enabling you to still be useful during the Day. This hero is generally a Position 3 or 4.

Void – This ability is amazing, fairly long cast range, fairly fast cast animation, decent nuke damage, movement speed slow and an attack speed slow – what else could someone reasonably ask for? It gets better though as during Night time this spell has a much greater duration and adds a mini stun to enable the canceling of abilities (usually them trying to teleport away from you).

Crippling Fear – An AoE around Night Stalker that causes all enemies within to be silenced. The duration of the ability is doubled if being used at night.

Hunter in the Night – This ability makes you extremely fast and attack extremely fast at night, it is one of your greatest tools and is generally the 2nd priority to max after Void.

Dark Ascension – Turn Day into Night to get all the powerful effects of your other abilities, also you get a decent damage increase on your attacks during the duration of this ability.

Basic Tips for Playing Night Stalker

  • Beware about opening a gank with this ability as if they teleport immediately it will not come off cooldown fast enough to stop their tp.
  • Generally speaking Max Void first, put 1 point in Crippling Fear, Max Hunter in the Night second, and always take Dark Ascension when you can.
  • Dark Ascension does not pause the timer in the game meaning that if used during the Day you’ll have less time to wait until the next Night.
  • Only use Dark Ascension at Night if the vision decrease or the bonus damage you get is going to turn a fight around.
  • If gold allows items like Aghanim’s Scepter can be amazing on the hero as it allows full vision at Night and when paired with Gem of Truesight allows easy dewarding.

6. Omniknight

Omniknight can be a 3, 4, or 5. He is tanky and has abilities that can heal and provide HP regeneration as well as Status Resistance to his team or himself. Omniknight can stay back and provide support for his allies or jump straight into a fight depending on what position he ends up on. Omniknight is great for beginners because his abilities only require you to use them when the moment comes and for the rest of the time you can simply right click enemies or stand back and wait for your moment to shine.

Purification – After a decent cast animation Omniknight heals an ally and deals pure damage to enemies in a small radius around that ally. Provides great harass and lane stability early in the game and can turn ganks around fairly quickly.

Heavenly Grace – Grants an ally massive Status Resistance and a respectable amount of Health Regeneration, enabling your carries to fight with little fear, especially when combined with your Ult.

Degen Aura – Just because they’re around you enemies are slowed, can be used for great early harass and if you pick up some movement speed items or even a blink dagger you could stop them from running away in fights.

Guardian Angel – An amazing ability that causes allies within a medium radius of you to become completely immune to physical damage. Never underestimate the teamfight power of just ignoring all physical damage.

Basic Tips on Playing Omniknight

  • Guardian Angel’s AoE is not the largest, make sure you place yourself carefully in fights.
  • Purification’s AoE is very small but if you have Degen Aura and are in right click range of an enemy it will be hard for them to get out of the range.
  • Maxing Degen Aura can help some lane combinations with Omniknight, keep an eye out for what heroes you will be in lane with.
  • If allowed farm, Radiance can be a useful farming item.
  • Omniknight is tanky early in the game, don’t be afraid to potentially dive if paired with other tanky heroes.

5. Bristleback

A hero with only 2 abilities to press and pick him if you love spamming buttons as well. Bristleback is a tanking initiating semi-carry that loves throwing quills everywhere, taking hits, and hitting hard with a flail. This hero is great for beginners that would rather be on the front lines. Unlike the other heroes on the list, we’re going to go through his abilities in a different order than they appear as it is important to describe how his passives work to understand why his actives matter.

Bristleback – This passive is what makes him an effective tank. Bristleback takes 20% less damage from attacks made to the side of him and a whopping 40% less damage from sources behind him. Perhaps the most important part of this ability is that per 210 damage blocked this way he releases a copy of his W (Quill Spray) for free.

Quill Spray – This is an AoE nuke with a low cooldown and mana cost that puts a stacking debuff on enemies hit by it that increases the damage of further Quill Sprays. Working with his tanking passive to add more Quills to enemies Bristle can dish out massive damage in elongated fights.

Viscous Nasal Goo – Armor is complicated in this game but the gist of it is the lower armor they have the more physical damage you do and Bristle is all about physical damage. Goo also applies a slow and stacks with itself enabling early chasing and can help both you and your team hit harder due to the stacking negative armor on enemies. Its low cooldown and mana cost have great synergy with his Ultimate.

War Path – While spamming Quill Spray and Viscous Nasal Goo Bristle generates stacks of War Path enabling him to move faster and hit harder. The low cooldowns on Quills and Goo combined with the armor reduction of Goo and the physical scaling of this ability makes Bristle a force.

Basic Tips on Playing Bristleback

  • If you have enough attack speed try to right click the enemy once then when they attack back turn your pack to them in order to decrease damage taken and Quill more.
  • Keep an eye on how many Quill stacks enemies have in the early stages, it is possible to dive them under the tower at early levels if they have many stacks.
  • Watch out for enemies buying Magic Stick against you as your spam will give them charges to regain health and mana.
  • Bristleback can suffer if an enemy buys Silver Edge as the Break capability on the item will disable your tanking passive making you vulnerable.

4. Lion

In an interesting place due to 7.20 changes this hero can be played in any position but 1. Lion could use heavy farm to feed into his Ult’s stacking damage per kill to get Aghanim’s Scepter and other powerful items making him a decent 2 or 3. He could just aim to get a Blink Dagger and initiate with his powerful hex and stun making him a great 4. Position 5 doesn’t even hamper him as his spells are just so strong sometimes he doesn’t even need many items. Lion suffers from lack of mobility and being quite squishy so awareness plays a role here.

Earth Spike – This ability can stun multiple enemies if aimed correctly, but could also miss entirely. While hitting 4 or more enemies scream “Ravage!” even if you don’t know what it means.

Hex – Turn enemies into a harmless frog, they’re not exactly stunned but can’t take any action other than move at 100 movement speed.

Mana Drain – Hope your enemies didn’t like casting spells. Drain them of everything they have then Earth Spike them to make sure they understand who’s boss.

Finger of Death – It does death. This is a heavy nuke that can be made AoE with Aghanim’s Scepter, however, the power of this ability comes from 7.20’s change which allows it to stack and additional 50 damage per enemy hit by Finger then killed within 3 seconds.

Basic Tips on Playing Lion

  • Don’t be afraid to gank early with this hero as this ability combined with Hex makes him effective.
  • Blink Dagger allows Lion to effectively initiate due to the fast cast point on Hex.
  • Mana Drain’s final level is much more efficient than any other level of the spell.
  • Don’t be afraid to secure kills with Finger of Death, but if possible give your Position 1 the kill.
  • Earth Spike’s travel distance is slightly longer if you click on the ground.

3. Ogre Magi

Test your luck with this hero that can be a Position 4 with Hand of Midas or even a Position 5 due to his great spells and starting beef. Ogre Magi functions to empower Position 1 and 2 heroes on your team with bloodlust, stun enemy heroes providing important lock down for ganks and team fights, and his ignite ability is amazing value in the early stages of the game. His starting armor value and high health pool makes him great for beginner players as he doesn’t take much damage in the beginning phases. Ogre Magi’s abilities are all cast on targets which can also help beginner players as there are no skill shots involved.

Fireblast – A nuke and a stun, feels the best to multicast.

Ignite – Slow with DoT, useful to harass in lane and set up level 1 kills or even other ganks.

Bloodlust – Amazing to keep your team scaling in the game, movement speed and attack speed what else could a carry want?

Multicast – The ability that makes the hero function, like rolling dice but to see if your enemies burn.

Basic Tips on Playing Ogre Magi

  • Ignite at level 1 is a powerful tool, do not be afraid to contest enemy Bounty runes.
  • When using Bloodlust use it on your allies and if it multicasts you’ll be affected.
  • Ogre Magi can multicast items, making Hand of Midas an amazing farming tool.
  • Bloodlust in the first few levels can help your ability to right click enemy heroes in lane.
  • Play around your hero’s tankiness early in the game, don’t be afraid to trade attacks.

2. Crystal Maiden

A slow, squishy position 5 Crystal Maiden happens to have some of the best spells you could ask for. Crystal Maiden is great for new players because her two spells are quite easy to use, Crystal Nova has a massive AoE and is hard to miss, Frostbite has a decent cast range and Freezing Field requires you to stand completely still while channeling so the only challenge is being in proper position which comes with practice. Keep in mind she makes a juicy target for many ganking heroes and try to avoid picking her if she could just get easily killed – but in the right places this hero is extremely effective and easy.

Crystal Nova – This ability is a very powerful AoE slow in the beginning parts of the game, as well as providing some nuke damage.

Frostbite – Her 2nd best ability, this is a root that deals damage over time and enables her to take out some bigger creeps in the jungle.

Arcane aura – Her best ability, this is a global give your team free mana. Never underestimate the power of free mana.

Freezing Field – Show them the dance of your people with a massive AoE slow and nuke in fights.

Basic Tips on Playing Crystal Maiden

  • With a point in Nova and Frostbite don’t be afraid to try ganks, Smoke of Deceit is a great item for early ganks.
  • She can get easy creeps in the jungle with Frostbite, useful if your Position 1 wants solo xp.
  • Glimmer Cape can help get off Freezing Field and is fairly inexpensive.
  • Try to hide in trees when using Freezing Field in order to get a longer Ult off.

1. Bane

For a position 5 Bane makes the job quite easy by having great abilities and amazing starting stats. Bane is effective even with only basic boots, can control multiple aspects in a fight, and can prove difficult to kill for just a single hero at many points in the game.

Enfeeble – This ability decreases damage done by the hero you put it on, can be great early in the game to stop the enemy from securing farm.

Brain Sap – An amazing tool for both nuking (pure damage) and keeping yourself healthy (heal), pair with Soul Ring for potential lane abuse.

Nightmare – Arguably Bane’s best ability, this ability allows self saving from ganks, enables teammates to get into a better position for a gank, can disrupt enemies in team fights, and can even be used to save your teammates.

Fiend’s Grip – Keep in mind this ability is a Channeled ability meaning you cannot move or take other actions while using it – however it completely disables the person you’re targeting, use on their Position 1 or their initiators if you’re the team jumping.

Basic Tips on Playing Bane

  • In lane try to harass as much as possible using Brain Sap when mana allows and right clicking when away from enemy creeps as to not draw aggro and take unnecessary damage.
  • During fights try to obscure self as this will help get a full duration Fiend’s Grip off. If gold allows then Glimmer Cape is a superb item.
  • Don’t be afraid to aggressively Nightmare enemies if ganking, allowing your team time to get into position – and don’t forget you can right click Nightmared targets without waking them up!
  • You can deny yourself with a well timed Nightmare, it is quite worth trying.
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A Dota obsessed, RPG craving, Anime binging maniac that can be found on the corner of "Conch and Coral".
Gamer Since: 1996
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