Hi, in the past few months I’ve been learning how to play various heroes in the jungle and have gotten a lot of enjoyment out of playing unconventional jungle heroes, those being heroes that you wouldn’t think can jungle but actually can.
So, with this guide I would like to share my information of all the heroes that I am aware can jungle at level 1 and get good xp/farm. Hopefully, you guys might be able to provide some information you might have on different heroes you’ve tried or seen in the jungle.
First, I’ll list all the heros that are listed as jungler type heroes by Dota.
Ursa: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V7imvV1w72U I play this build very often, I actually suggest getting a ring of protection along with the rest of the items he’s bought in this video because I’ve died to Rosh without it a few times. Fastest Rosh I’ve gotten was at around 4:15 after I randomed Ursa and got the bounty rune.
Enigma: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4K4C6EFssS8 Best guide I’ve found for jungling with Enigma, It’s actually quite difficult to keep up with the player in the video but none the less can really help speed up your performance. Quickest level 6 I’ve gotten was 4:30 after trying this probably a total of 20 times.
Axe: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ohAMxVWHHek I haven’t watched a ton of Axe jungle videos, but this one by far is the best I’ve seen. You can actually get really lucky with the first medium stack camp and be level 3 before you kill yourself in the jungle. Downside to this build is relying on the runes for sustain, though the upsides besides farm being rune control for mid control. Also Axe is just a great jungler for helping mid and safe lane.
Natures Prophet: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RyKnLGkZwiU I haven’t invested to much time into learning Natures so I don’t quite know that this is the best video to watch for efficient jungling. A lot of the jungle guides show actual gameplay in which they gank for first blood or other kills, what I’m trying to showcase is just straight PvE in these guides. If someone knows of a better guide/video for anything I provide, please feel free to comment and share some.
Chen: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AgNNemSYcXA Kind of a bizarre video, but get’s down to the point. With these types of support junglers please buy a courier or wards in real matches.
Bloodseeker: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JzLMwfsNsIc I’ve done this a few times, extremely straight forward jungle build. Just remember to bloodrage the target you’re hitting so you don’t take extra damage from the whole camp, just the target you are hitting. Also I would suggest getting a point into your passive, I feel like jungle builds have to be a bit realistic in the sense that just because Bloodrite can give you added dps doesn’t mean you should invest early points into it for the extra damage, the passive might be more useful to your team/match.
Doom: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=79kckYCVIfQ For some reason Doom isn’t listed as a jungler but oh well. Anyways I don’t think this is a very good video honestly, but I have no experience with Doom jungle as I’ve only played him a couple times. If anyone plays Doom often, please comment on any criticisms you’d have, like maybe creeps to eat, managing mana, because I’m not sure the person in this video is maximising there efficiency.
Lycan: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S508xdynfuY Great video on Lycan, you die in a jungle a couple times but it still makes the most out of what Lycan has in his arsenal for jungling. Check out this guys channel, I’m going to be linking mostly his videos because they are all very well made and interesting.
Lifestealer: I couldn’t find a good enough video on Lifestealer that I would have liked to share, mainly because all the up to date videos were just match gameplays from pro players. But, Lifestealer is definitely a very straight forward hero, I feel like you’d jungle with him like Bloodseeker, mainly choke jungling and leveling up your life leech passive. I’m not sure about an item build, but I don’t think you’d need tangos so it’d probably just be Quelling Blade, Stout Shield, and then build into Midas or Boots.
Enchantress: I did not find an up to date jungle guide for her, but I imagine you could learn a lot about jungling with her by watching a Chen jungle video. I honestly don’t have much knowledge on Enchantress, probably one of the heroes I most do not have experience with playing.
Legion Commander: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1MWNcWii3ik I really like this video, though it’s a video of someone playing a real match, it does show legion only jungling for the starting 5 minutes, after which she starts to interact with the other heroes which I generally don’t want in these videos. Interesting build though, I like the soul ring pick up, but I’m not sure how good this guide is in the current patch because if I’m not mistaken she has been a bit nerfed.
Now, here is a list of the nonconventional jungle heroes which are actually pretty effective.
Huskar: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p9ISF8zfbXw This one, by far, is my favorite jungle build. It is extremely hard but pays off a ton if you are a seasoned Huskar player. When I first saw this video and tried out this build, I failed it after probably 20-30 tries over the span of 3 hours. But, once I kind of got it down, I consistently could get 10 minute roshan + level 9 and Armlet + boots. This build also isn’t too RNG dependant to work, it just takes a large amount of skill and awareness of Huskar’s capabilities to master.
Broodmother: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NWVrayDyKfQ I actually found this build while I was searching for videos to link to this thread. This guide is kind of silly to be honest, but it does have a mild payoff instead of laning. Though, I don’t know when you’d rather jungle than lane as Broodmother, I do appreciate the idea of this. This is probably one of the worst heroes to keep in the jungle but still, it works.
Terrorblade: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=okd5kc67or8 Here is another video from this guy, I’ll be sharing a few more from him as well. This build still works great in the latest patch and I always take Terrorblade to the jungle when I random him. It is very easy and straightforward, and you can surprisingly get a good amount of farm in the jungle. The best I’ve done with this in a pub was got 2 wraith bands, Treads, and a Blade of Alacrity by around 10 minutes. You even keep up on xp pretty evenly with your mid hero.
Necrophos: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r9EYAXtSzic This build, which I believe is only playable on dire side but probably could be formatted for radiant is pretty okay. There are ups and downs to playing Necro jungle as the way you clear the jungle isn’t like any other hero. In my experience, you can’t be the jungler who can step out at any time to help a lane, Necro must invest all his time into stacking and killing the stacks with his aura. This build also can be debunked by the Satyr camps spawning too much, when this happens you have to immediately kill them and it can be quite tough, I’ve had 2 Satyr camps spawn in a row and it really slow down my mech timing. While it is a fun jungler to play, you must invest 8-9 minutes of sheer jungling or else you will come out of the jungle with very poor farm/xp. Also, just another sort of downside to the build is that once the stacks are done, you’re are done jungling and really can’t continue to jungle.
Techies: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BrfMgwbSFwU I still have yet to try this build, because I’m quite forgetful sometimes, but this build is actually so helpful for a techies player. Since I haven’t tried it, I couldn’t tell you what the downsides could be to it. But, what I see here is probably the best role techies could play, assuming the enemy team doesn’t send a creep to walk through your stack of mines. Being level 5 at 3:30 is super crazy as Techies. Techies is absolutely a tempo based hero, if he falls behind with xp, he has to invest more mana and time into each stack he puts down and it can really be detrimental to your game if you fall off too fast. But, at level 5 with level 3 land mines early in the game, you could probably kill most of their heroes with only 2-3 mines assuming you’re not playing against an early tank like Nightstalker or Spirit Breaker. I’m going to have to test this out tonight.
Magnus: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZW_6Ttgk3Bc Before I really knew how to efficiently lane as Magnus, especially since I never play mid. I used to play this build only killing just the small pull camp. This build is pretty bad to be honest, the most you get out of it is level 5 at around 6 minutes and then you are basically done. I’ve tried numerous times to make this an adaptable build to the current jungle, but it really isn’t that efficient. I’m only really linking this because I’d like to see if anyone here knows of a better way to do this. Really, the basis of how bad this jungle build is, is that once you’re done with your stack, at best you are level 6, but at that point jungling isn’t really an option so you have to roam around with only brown boots and a bottle.
Sniper: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rdCMckZP1xI Here’s a quick video on jungle sniper that is pretty self explanatory. Fan Yang, the youtuber who I’ve linked numerous times in this thread, also has a more in depth look at jungle sniper, with an ancient farming guide as well. This build seems pretty good if you don’t feel comfortable with Snipers laning phase, which is probably not the case. But, it still is a very viable build if you want to throw around a bit of solo xp for another hero. This build is probably the least necessary but definitely not bad.
Juggernaut: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6s_6IFoSohU Very straightforward and up to date video. Not much to say besides the fact that he doesn’t buy Mask of Madness which is a bit strange to me, and that he is a bit careless in the jungle which shows that there is much improvement that can be done.
Crystal Maiden: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-0yckJgM5BQ Really simple, kill big creep, stack repeat. Probably don’t go for midas, the video is very straight forward though as to what your goal is with CM jungle, get some xp and start roaming.
Pudge: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F4JxZKQnMS0 These next few builds will be basically the same strategy as in this video. This guide uses pudges latest buff which extended his level 1 hook range so he can pull large camps into positions where the will interact with your creep wave and in turn pull the wave. I like this build a lot because of the fact that pudge is always missing, which is really nice for toying with your enemy team or getting easy ganks around the map.
Rubick: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZOMPWeXLZYI I’ll be honest and say that I kind of doubt this still works, but I do think it is good to mention as maybe someone here knows if it does work or if it works else where in the jungle. seeing how this video is almost 3 years old, please don’t credit me on saying it still works, but see for yourself or say something if you know. Either way, same concept as the pudge pulling trick.
Clockwork: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W1i4GEYGoxI Same concept in the same radiant large camp. Push the large creep with cogs in the precise spot and it will pull the creep wave. This guide is kind of sloppy but if someone makes the build more efficient maybe they could get a quicker level 6 so the Clockwork could begin ganking as soon as possible.
Puck: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GNHL8lT2QUk Dagon + level 6 by around 8 minutes, seems silly but it is worth mentioning.
Medusa: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k8jsrkuWG3A Ancient farming with a midas at 7:30 consistently. Sniper can do this same build by cutting down those same trees and kiting the ancients. I feel like if you focus down the big granite golems to kill the health aura you’d actually get improved efficiency, so maybe even get a 7:00 midas.
Sand King: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FGEX5XveZ28 Blink Dagger bought at 7:30 even after missing 1 large stack and not double pulling the wave each time. I think there is room to grow with this build and that you could probably get a faster Blink Dagger pretty easily. I think if I did this build in game though I would definitely watch my hp when pulling, he was close to 100 health on his last pull which is just one nuke spell away from killing you.
Hopefully I didn’t miss any heroes, these are all the heroes I know can jungle from level 1 though. If there are any I might have missed or any criticisms, please feel free to say something, I would like to share knowledge with all of you and hear what you guys have to say about some of the junglers I’ve listed here. I’ve tried most of these builds out as well so if you have questions about that too feel free to ask.