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Gameplay Update 6.87

Dota 2 has rolled out with its 6.87 patch, and the most complicated MOBA in the genre continues to add even more gameplay ingredients into the pot. As opposed to multiple patches like in other games such as League of Legends (LoL), Dota 2 instead opts for fewer patches throughout the year with more gameplay additions with every update.

Because there are so many elements within this individual patch, I will instead focus on five aspects of the patch notes that particularly stood out to me for each category: gameplay/interface, items and heroes.


1. Adding bans to Ranked All Pick.

Reworked Ranked All Pick. Before the picking phase begins, there is a 15 second voting phase to ban heroes. Each player votes for a different hero. Afterwards, half of the heroes that were voted on will be randomly selected and banned.
Two players cannot vote for the same hero. The game displays heroes as they are voted on, but not who voted. The number of bans is equal to half the total number of votes. If there is an odd number of votes, the number of bans is randomly rounded up or down.
The random ban selection will choose at most 3 heroes from one specific team’s votes, so it’s more evenly split.

– Allows players to ban meta-popular picks from the hero pool.
– Would cut down on players just abusing super-broken heroes in every match.
– I do not like the random ban selection, which makes me wonder why every player cannot just ban a hero apiece if they all get to vote anyway.

2. New team-wide Scan ability.

Each team now has a Scan ability, available on the minimap UI.
Scans a targeted 900 AoE for 8 seconds. Indicates whether there are enemy heroes in that area during the 8 seconds.
Starts on cooldown and has a global team-wide cooldown of 4.5 minutes
Note: Does not consider units inside the Roshan Pit, but does consider Smoked units. Does not show how many heroes there are, just if there are any enemies. Enemies do not know when your team casts it.

– As scouting is always important in the MOBA genre, this pseudo-scouting tool is intriguing.
– Because it is a team ability instead of an individual one, making proper use of this option would be pivotal.
– However, because it is a team ability with a global cooldown, theoretically a teammate could waste this Scan ability for their team.

3. Bounty Rune tweak.

Initial Bounty Rune no longer gives experience

– Makes fighting for the initial Bounty Rune less crucial, though still important.
– For a long time, a lot of the laning phase in Dota 2 could be dictated by who got the first Bounty Rune on each side of the river because of the huge experience boost.
– Would therefore lower the Level 1/2 cheese.

4. New Captains Mode Ban/Pick Order.

Captains Mode Pick time from 40 to 30 seconds
Captains Mode Bonus time from 110 to 130 seconds
Captains Mode: Adjusted the order of bans in the 2nd ban phase (from 1st/2nd/1st/2nd to 2nd/1st/2nd/1st)
Captains Mode: Adjusted the order of picks in the final pick phase (from 2nd/1st to 1st/2nd)
Captains Mode: The overall pick/ban order for the two teams is now:
Ban1: 1st/2nd/1st/2nd
Pick1: 1st/2nd/2nd/1st
Ban2: 2nd/1st/2nd/1st
Pick2: 2nd/1st/2nd/1st
Ban3: 2nd/1st
Pick3: 1st/2nd

– Completely reworks the long-established sequence of this tournament mode.
– In a nutshell, teams alternate their bans/picks more than the previous sequence.
– Overall, it is an interesting revision of this popular mode for competitive play.

5. Revised terrain.
Dota2 Map
– This is the 6.86 map. Expect to see this terrain drastically different (more or less) across various spots.
– New ward/juke spots as well as additional ramps, among other things.
– Overall, new strategies will become possible.



1. New Bloodthorn item.


New item formed from Orchid, Crystalys, and a Recipe

Orchid (4075)
Crystalys (2120)
Recipe (1000)
Total: 7195

+ 25 Intelligence
+ 30 Attack Speed
+ 60 Damage
+ 150% Mana Regeneration

Active: All attacks on the silenced target, including from allies, gain True Strike and a 1.35x critical hit

Cooldown: 11

Passive: Grants a chance to land a critical hit

– Combines a targeted silence with True Strike and critical strike chance.
– Hoses evasion and mage heroes at the same time.
– Extremely costly, but the benefits are powerful.

2. New Echo Sabre item.


Echo Sabre

New item formed from Oblivion Staff and Ogre Club

Requires:Oblivion Staff (1650)Ogre Club (1000)Total: 2650

Provides:+ 10 Strength+ 10 Intelligence+ 10 Attack Speed+ 15 Damage+ 75% Mana Regeneration

Passive: Causes melee attacks to attack twice in quick succession. Your double attack applies a 0.6 second 100% MS/AS slow. Has a 5 second cooldown.

Note: The passive only works on Melee Heroes.

– Very Dota-esque in terms of raw power.
– Makes melee heroes scary.
– The slow effect is ridiculous.

3. New Infused Raindrops consumable.


Infused Raindrops

New consumable item, Infused Raindrops

Costs: 225 gold

+ 0.85 Mana Regeneration

Passive: Comes with 5 charges, the item is destroyed when it reaches 0 charges. When you receive over 50 Magic Damage it procs, consuming a charge and blocking 120 Magic Damage. The proc has a 4 second cooldown.

Becomes available for purchase at the 3 minute mark

– Counteracts magic damage, which is more powerful at the start in Dota 2.
– Cannot be purchased until a few minutes into the game.
– Cooldown keeps the consumable in check.

4. New Tome of Knowledge consumable.


Tome of Knowledge

New consumable item

Costs: 150 gold

Use: Grants you 425 experience.

Starts out of stock, increments stock every 10 minutes.

– You can buy experience in Dota 2 now. Just crazy.
– Cannot be bought until a certain amount of time has passed and comes in limited quantities.
– Gives an alternative means of acquiring experience with the gold you earn during a match.

5. New Hurricane Pike item.


Hurricane Pike

New item formed from Force Staff, Dragon Lance, and a Recipe

Requires:Force Staff (2225)Dragon Lance (1900)Recipe (250)Total: 4375

Provides:+ 20 Agility+ 15 Strength+ 10 Intelligence+ 4 HP Regeneration+ 130 Attack Range (ranged heroes only, does not stack)

Active: When used on an enemy, it pushes you both away from each other 450 units each, and allows you to attack that target without range restrictions for 4 attacks for a maximum of 5 seconds. Does not give vision over the enemy. Works normally like Force Staff when used on self or allies.

Cooldown: 14

Cast range: 400 when used on enemies, 800 on allies or self.

– Converts one of the most used utility items at higher levels of play into an ultimate-caliber active effect on enemies. Only in Dota 2
– Being able to attack without range restrictions is mechanically overpowered.
– Still has the Force Staff option on allies and self.


1. Arc Warden gets his voltage toned down.


Arc Warden

Flux no longer slows magic immune units

Flux is now purgeable

Flux slow reduced from 50% to 35/40/45/50%

Magnetic Field cooldown reduced from 50 to 35/30/25/20

Magnetic Field duration increased from 3.5/4/4.5/5 to 3.5/4.5/5.5/6.5

Magnetic Field now only evades attacks done from outside of the field

Spark Wraith mana cost reduced from 100/110/120/130 to constant 80

Spark Wraith activation delay reduced from 3 to 2

Spark Wraith now applies a 0.4/0.5/0.6/0.7 second purge

Spark Wraith damage rescaled from 150/200/250/300 to 100/160/220/280

Tempest Double no longer has an HP/Mana cost

Tempest Double ability/item cooldowns now persist on the unit

Tempest Double no longer replicates items that drop on death

Tempest Double cooldown reduced from 65/60/55 to 50/40/30

Tempest Double duration reduced from 20 to 12/13/14

Tempest Double cast point increased from 0 to 0.15

Strength growth increased from 1.9 to 2.3

Intelligence growth increased from 2.1 to 2.6

– Overall, Arc Warden is sort of weaker as a whole.
– Less capable of in-game cheese now with his clone being unable to copy certain items.
– Will force players to use him differently.

2. Earthshaker gets a groundbreaking upgrade.



Reworked Scepter on Earthshaker

Enchant Totem becomes a 900 range ground target ability. Causes you to jump in the air and land at the target spot, casting enchant totem there.

Self casting the ability will make it behave in the original form, without jumping.

– As one of the strongest and scariest support heroes in the game, Earthshaker just got a significant item option with Aghanim’s Scepter.
– Makes him less reliant on Blink Dagger and/or Force Staff later in the game for initiation purposes.
– Therefore, enemies will have a harder time dealing with Earthshaker when he builds Aghanim’s Scepter.

3. Enchantress loses some sharpness in her spears.



Impetus damage reduced from 15/20/25% to 14/18/22%

Impetus max distance reduced from 2500 to 1750

– One of the most popular picks in the previous patch is getting toned down significantly.
– Damage being reduced will make Enchantress a less attractive pick, as her damage output was a big draw to selecting her.
– Her difficult-to-deal-with presence in a solo lane should remain unchanged, though.

4. Invoker is starting to become less magical.



Invoked Spells cast point increased from 0 to 0.05

Cold Snap is now dispellable

Ghost Walk cooldown increased from 35 to 45

Tornado vision reduced from 600 to 200

Forge Spirit Health/Mana changed from Exort/Quas based to Quas/Exort based

Base intelligence reduced from 22 to 16

– Invoker continues to see further nerfs in his direction after being over-buffed in the previous patch.
– He has now received an unprecedented amount of nerfs, especially for a few patches back-to-back.
– Invoker will continue getting nerfed until he is unplayable at this rate.

5. Outworld Devourer goes on a bit of a damage diet.


Outworld Devourer

Arcane Orb Intelligence Steal reduced from 2/3/4/5 to 1/2/3/4

Arcane Orb mana cost increased from 100 to 100/120/140/160

Astral Imprisonment cast range reduced from 450/500/550/600 to 225/350/475/600

– Easily the most disruptive and rage-inducing hero of the previous patch (next to Invoker), it was expected for Outworld Devourer to get nerfed.
– Mana cost increases will force Outworld Devourer players to think twice about attacking without a second thought.
– Range nerf on Astral Imprisonment will provide counter-play opportunities for opponents at the earlier levels.

So these were just a few drops of an ocean of changes for Dota 2 in this patch. As always, these patches will drastically change how the game is played and will always push the envelope for the MOBA genre with its extreme and over-the-top mechanics. In particular, expect competitive play in Dota 2 to evolve into something completely different. A new meta will definitely be created.

All Dota 2 images belong to Valve.

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