Balancing a game with as many moving pieces as Dota has always been a difficult task. There are always heroes who come out of patches much more powerful than most and others that fall behind. By now we are probably familiar with most of the strong heroes after seeing them in every pro tournament as well as our pub games. Here are four heroes that fall on the other end of the spectrum and desperately need some buffs to become relevant again.
Sniper has not been relevant since the HOHO-HAHA era except for his very short stint as a position 4 support. By heavily nerfing the Aghanim’s Scepter stun and nearly every mobile carry becoming meta, there is almost no upside to picking Sniper right now. Sniper has been trending downwards since July and even as his pick rate continues to fall, the winrate has only just started leveling out at under 47%.
Sniper is currently stuck between being a right click carry style hero and a magic damage support. The main problem is that as a carry he is one of the most vulnerable targets in the game with poor mobility, mediocre stats and no real game-winning power spike. Sniper boasts a losing win rate at every MMR bracket that only gets lower as the MMR gets higher.
Grimstroke has fallen a long way since being introduced to the game. Even though the hero pairs well with much of the meta right now, Grimstroke has been hit with consistent nerfs over many patches. The hero just doesn’t get a ton of value on his own and is easily countered by Black King Bar. Grimstroke has been sitting around 46% win rate for most of the year across all brackets with that number dipping lower the higher the rank.
Grimstroke might get a bit more value on a coordinated stack but just generally suffers from mediocre numbers on his skill and stats. The biggest problem with this hero is how much he relies on teammates to do all the work and combo with. Grimstroke can push creeps waves with decent efficiency but after that it’s all up to his team.
Keeper’s win rate has been plummeting ever since April. After a period of extreme strength, Keeper of the Light was hit with nerfs to nearly every aspect of his ability kit. Most of his early game strength has been negated and the old man on a horse has been reduced to more of a nuisance than anything else.
With the increased mobility of most popular core heroes, Keeper’s movement speed has been nullified entirely. He can still defend towers and depush lanes with relative success but other than an easily countered ultimate Keeper of the Light provides next to nothing in team fights. It is never a good sign when a hero’s win rate dips sharply after a patch and falls lower and lower the higher rank you look at.
Outworld Devourer is a carry hero stuck in a mid hero’s body. As one of the most tinkered with heroes in the game, the current version of OD doesn’t work very well. There have been times with OD was an oppressive force in the game but it has been over a year since the hero sniffed a 50% win rate in pubs. Across all skill brackets OD falls well below the average threshold and compared to the other, more meta mid heroes he does nothing to outshine them.
With a nerfed ultimate, awkward farming and very poor early game impact, OD completely misses most of the timing windows that he used to dominate. He is rarely being picked, even by the best OD players, and his win rate remains as low as ever. In the current meta, Outworld Devourer either gets out farmed by harder carries or outpaced by faster mid heroes. This hero either needs better farming tools or to perhaps find a new role or playstyle.
There are certainly other candidates for this list and depending on your rank some heroes might seem like a free loss if they are on your team. However, these four seem to be agreed upon as being massive liabilities to any team from Herald up to the pros.