I am 4900-5100 mmr player with Drow as my favourite hero. Today I will be bringing you a hidden op way to play drow, which is Force staff drow build. This is not troll/joke post, it actually works. I will describe how.
When I say it is “hidden” op, I mean people will go “wtf drow force staff??”, even at my mmr and that is because it is unusual. However, if you think about it, you will realise it makes a lot of sense.
The “Why” of Force-centric build
Drow Ranger is a very different type of carry compared to your usual “hard” carries. Her stat gain is totally shit, at 1.9 agi per level. This means all of her power comes from her ult, which gives shitton of agi. However, this +agi gets turned off if anyone is inside your 400 aoe. Therefore it is very important that you position yourself so you are always hitting at 400+ range.
Also, Drow is not really a hard carry exactly because of this reason. At later game, smart opponents will buy blink/hex/abyssal blade, and your bkb will eventually go down to 4 sec. This means you will start to lose impact lategame because, unlike gyro/luna/spec etc, you have zero aoe, which means your autoattacks don’t scale well at all in terms of teamfighting. Your silence and 60% slow also falls off lategame when bkbs start coming out.
Instead, her true power lies in absolute domination of midgame with 60% slow and 6 sec silence, combined with crazy splitpush from her aura.
However, to achieve this, you need few things:
1. smart skill build: Max frost, then silence, then aura. Only max aura first/second if you have 4-5 range. However I will assume that is not the case. The new knockback silence is extremely good, as it serves as disengage as well as disruption. It is really quite easy to get multiple heroes with it, and the 0.5sec knockback gives you enough time to run up and hit the frost arrow. Frost arrow… please get it. It is 60% slow, come on. Don’t do the stats-aura build, she is not Medusa and patch is not 6.42b.
2. Positioning. This is where force staff is necessary. People will know you are squishy and try to kill you fast. If you have force staff, you can force -> silence to position yourself to silence multiple heroes and turn it around, or just force away to safety. It is also very good for chasing, since Drow’s move speed is average and her attack animation is really shit early, which means it is actually hard to catch someone even with orbwalk, especially if they use fog to their advantage.
3. Now, for the meat of my guide – the item build.
Early – Boots of your choice, I usually take Power Treads but sometimes I take Tranquils for regen/ms and change to treads later. It is important to give yourself ring of basilius/aquila for mana regen. You should be using frost/silence a lot and it will help you a lot in long term. I also grab magic stick because I know I will be participating in teamfights, and it helps mana issues even more.
Mid – Force staff, then situational: Completing force will open up a whole new way of playing Drow, just like what blink on Puck does. Its passive hp regen is also nice for neuting without lifesteal (frost arrow lasts 5 sec on creeps for ez kiting mode) while 10 int means you will never have mana problems again.
You have 3 options for situational items: BKB (vs Invoker, Mirana, Storm etc). Yasha (vs any general lineup without heavy cc or pa). MoM (for midgame ownage, but only if you are confident in positioning and it makes sense in the game). Oh and if they have PA, just rush MKB
And I would like to clarify something for many Drow players out there. Drow does not really need damage items to do damage. If you are able to position yourself, you get 40/60/80 Damage and attack speed. Combined with her aura, that alone is more than enough to do all the damage you need within the 6 sec silence to kill 1 or 2 heroes, and the teamfight is over then.
Also, unless it is a very specific circumstance, Manta is really cost inefficient. Her illusions don’t get ult or aura bonus which means they are really weak. They literally do like 15 damage each, and die to 2 aoe spells. Not worth it at all unless you absolutely must disjoint something. Just stick with naked Yasha for move speed.
4. Always remember to use the aura active.
I see so many Drow players play the entire game without pressing the aura and I facepalm. With level 16, Yasha and Agi treads, it will give about +50 damage to ranged/siege creeps. That is insane. Please use it.
5. Enjoy your boosted winrate with Drow 🙂 Go Drow lovers 🙂
Disclaimer: you must actually have the dota-sense for positioning, or force staff may be a wasted gold/item slot.