The meta is dominated by (6) Knights + Dragon, Elves, Frontline + KOTL/CM/Razor, and different variations of warriors. I believe it?s good to have knowledge of Warriors because they?re just so consistent. With the introduction of the new patch on 3/29/2019, Warrior?s armor bonus got adjusted from 6/7/8 to 5/7/9. It?s a straight nerf since you don?t go 9 warriors and it?s bigger than it seems since 1 armor is somewhat noticeable. However, Naga synergy got buffed and Mage synergy got nerfed so relative to the previous patch, your early game will be slightly weaker for a slightly stronger mid/late game.
Anyway, I?ll begin by listing out the warriors in order of ascending cost. *Early game (1-15) *Mid game (16-25) *Late game(26+)
Tiny (Elemental Warrior) ? Given two of these in your first shop, only lock if you have another warrior to pair with it such as axe and tusk. It?s fine to have this early game, rounds 1-15 but look to replace it if you?re not running the KOTL/CM/Razor engine. This unit can carry early game if given Razor/Morphling but preferably Razor. Just a tip, if you do have Tiny and Razor, generally it?d be better to frontline Razor, have it CC and get one ult off. High base damage, Low AS, great MoM target.
Tusk (Beast Warrior) ? Given two of these in your first shop, I?d lock it unless your other three options are straight trash such as bat rider x2 and shadow shaman. For the rest of the guide I?ll assume you?re somewhat experienced, but I?ll give my opinion of relative strength of 1 cost units, so you?re not lost when to lock tusk. Good 1 cost non-warrior units would be Clockwork, Bounty Hunter, AM. Okay units would be Enchantress, Drow, Tinker. Trash wintrade units would include Shadow Shaman, Bat Rider and Ogre Magi. There is an argument to be had for Ogre Magi to be classified as an ?okay? unit, but I never pick it unless I have extra 1 gold, or I have two of them and looking to complete the set. Tusk has a great transition into late game because of its beast bonus and it?s relatively easy to look to tier 3. You can hold onto extra tusks but if you need to clear bench space or boost economy to the next threshold, especially early game, do feel free to let your extra Tusks go especially because LD 2 can replace Tusk 3.
Axe (Orc Warrior) ? I would lock this regardless of whether the last unit is trash. Orc is a great synergy early game because it?s so easy to complete. Axe/Jugg/BM. This also gives you access to look for Warrior + Hunter synergy or Warrior/Orc synergy or just a placeholder warrior. Replaceable mid-late game especially if you don?t have (4) Orc synergy.
Mars (God Warrior) ? The unit itself isn?t that good and I think God Warrior is hard to force/execute with 6 Warrior lineups. It can be doable with Warriors (3) + Hunters (3) but since most warriors apart from Kunnka don?t really benefit from reduced CD, it?s not worth giving up other potential synergies.
Juggernaut (Orc Warrior) ? This unit?s not pivotal for Warriors but it?s not bad. Juggernaut 2 has a strong midgame and starts to fall off unless you?re going for tier 3. Replaceable mid-late game especially if you?re not running orc bonus. Unit is even better with KOTL/CM/Razor engine and works well with magic resistance reduction items. Look for this paired with Axe and any other warrior early game.
Slardar (Naga Warrior) ? Units kind of bad but does provide Warrior (3) bonus. Generally used early game if you don?t have any other better warriors to provide the synergy. Can also be used if you somehow find an early Warrior (6) Synergy. It?s amazing late game against Mage comps especially with the buff and easy pairing with Medusa or Tidehunter. Note that this is a late game unit especially since Medusa 1 is trash unless you have Hunter bonus.
Lycan (Human Beast Warrior) ? Unit?s amazing. Pretty trash mid game at tier 1 but still offers good and easy pairable synergies. Key component in 6 Warriors. Human pairs with Kunnka, beast pairs with LD/Tusk.
Doom (Demon Warrior) ? lol?. This unit is just not balanced. If you?re given SF2 early, I?d probably keep SF2 but definitely look for Doom 2 on your bench unless your economy can?t afford it. Even at tier 1, the unit will silence key units such as Necro2 / LD / TA / KOTL in addition to insane base/pure damage and getting Doom 2 will basically carry your entire mid/early late game.
Kunnka (Human Warrior) ? lol?????? This unit is even more not balanced. Human synergy will single handedly win some fights in addition to Kunnka?s AOE nuke + CC. You want this in all warrior lineups but it?s worth noting that it?s not like goblins and techies. You can still have 6 Warrior synergy without Kunnka but when offered Kunnka, just replace one of your warriors. This unit is just broken on top of human synergy being literally broken but that?s another story.
Troll Warlord (Troll Warrior) ? Units good and your main carry if you?re not running other sources of DPS. This unit is awful at tier 1 and pretty good at tier 2 and amazing with items funneled into him. Say you somehow still have Tusk 1 and Tusk 1 gives 6 Warriors and Beast bonus whereas Troll warlord replacing tusk will lose you beast bonus. Don?t replace tusk. This unit just isn?t that good tier 1. TW with Mjollnir is instant free win.
Just a side note? Warrior?s are easy to force as you transition your early game into mid game. Don?t find early pairs of good one cost units and just be like NAHHHH I?M FORCING WARRIORS!!!! Your economy is going to be so garbage transitioning to mid/late you?ll probably end 6th at best. I think best early game warrior comps are Mechs + Warriors or Hunters + Warriors that transition into you throwing away the mechs/hunters or keeping the hunters depending what you?re given.
ANYWAY, Most effective, easy to find and commonly executed synergies would be?
Warriors (3/6) + Hunters(3)
Warriors (3/6) + Mages (KOTL/CM/Razor)
Warriors (3/6) + Orcs(4) (Only good mid game)
Warriors (6) + Human (2) + Beast(2) + Naga(2) *In my opinion most common and consistent
Note you can basically add Human/Beast/Naga synergies in the first three comps, especially if you?re going for 6 warriors. You also don?t need to have only three warriors if you?re not going for 6.
I?d recommend Kunnka/Doom/Lycan and either Tusk or LD if you?re running 3. But if you?re going to run 5 warriors, just put in the last one for 6. If you really have no space, I?d probably start saving to power level when you get enough gold and stick in the unit you replaced unless you?re sitting on key upgrades and would benefit from rerolling. You don?t have to force a level if you have life to spare but in the current meta, that?s pretty rare? I?ll leave that your own judgment.
Warrior + Hunter is good rounds 1-15 especially with any tier 2 Warriors. I?d look for hunters when given a BM and it?s paired with preferably Drow 2 and Windranger but Sniper and Mirana can be placeholders as early hunter buff is strong. (Mirana is also good post patch) I?d corner comp with Windranger in the corner. Transitioning into late game though, look for Medusa/Tide to replace Drow unless it?s tier 3 or you have Necro 2 for Undead synergy.
Warrior + Mages is good when you?re running Razor/Tiny early game and transition into mid game while finding CM and KOTL. Don?t think it?s worth forcing post nerf but it?s still good if you get it. Corner comp with KOTL in the corner. Note that the mage engine is not that good at KOTL1 or CM1.
Warriors + Orcs is strong mid game but starts to fall off late game where you can look to replace two of your orcs, usually BM and Juggernaut given you have Disruptor 2. Usually transition into this when you have early Axe 2 and either Jugg or BM2, I?d hold onto the unit that?s not tier 2 and maybe wait for a Disruptor if it?s not costing your economy too much. Orcs (4) + Warrior makes your units unkillable mid-game and you can look to streak and transition into something else late game.?https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fT4zLHd13aw?(Example of transitioning into Orc, I high rolled like shit btw)
6 Warriors + High tier Units ? Consistent and busted. Best 5 units would be Kunnka + Doom + Lycan + Tusk + Troll Warlord. You can sub out Tusk for LD. And put in a placeholder warrior such as Jugg / Slardar. Slardar can also be paired with Medusa/Tide for Naga bonus. You can play around with it but generally the synergies you?ll end up with is (6) Warriors + (2) Beasts + (2) Humans + (2) Naga.
I?ve touched on units throughout but to compile it together, units would be Tidehunter, LD, Medusa, Disruptor, Necrophos and basically any legendary except Lich.
Certain units are better with certain items and I?d check out Amaz?s guide on items despite your skill level since its actually really informative. For example, Gyro is pretty good without items but amazing with items so also look to shape your comp around that.
Closing notes? As you transition into mid-game it?s key to start to think about what units you?re going to get rid of. This allows you to funnel items onto them and gives you insight on whether you should be power leveling to 9 or rerolling a little bit at 8.
From my experience aim for 10/20 gold level 6 going into round 10, 40/50 gold level 6 going into round 15. Level 7 50 gold, with 8 exp (2 levels) off level 8 at round 21. Then you can look to reroll and stay at 8 post-25 or look to level post 25 depending on what upgrades you can hit / synergies you can hit. Hope you enjoyed this write-up, I can go more in-depth on economy management, what to do when behind early game, how to snowball early leads etc. in a separate guide but let me know what you think!