Massive Dota 2 Patch Revamps the Game and Adds New Character

A reworked map, redesigned HUD, a new pre-game phase, and a lot more are on the way.

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Now Playing: GS News Update: Massive Dota 2 Patch Revamps the Game and Adds New Character

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Valve has officially unveiled the details of Dota 2's much-anticipated 7.00 update. It's a huge one, and it launches today.

Most straightforward is the newest character, the Monkey King. Based on Sun Wukong, he's a melee carry who carries a staff he can slam down to deal damage to enemies in a line. He also has the ability to jump from tree to tree, transform to disguise himself from enemies, and summon a pack of monkey soldiers to attack nearby foes. Alongside his release, Valve has also launched a new comic and will offer new Monkey King-themed items for purchase. These include a new Arcana item, announcer pack, and a terrain that gives the map a new look.

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7.00's other changes and additions are more wide-sweeping. The HUD has been redesigned, refining the map, hero console, top bar, and shop. All characters now have a talent tree, presenting you with choices between two perks when you reach levels 10, 15, 20, and 25. Experience gain, gold gain, and leveling up have been altered, and the respawn timer has been decreased at certain points.

Everyone receives a backpack, allowing you to carry three additional items that can't be activated and provide no bonuses. These can be swapped into your main inventory after a short delay, but item cooldowns take longer when they are in the backpack. This should make it easier to complete recipes.

The map has been updated as well. Roshan moves from his existing spot to a new area near the power-up rune and gains additional armor and attack range, but he loses health and some health gain. Runes have been divided into two types: the aforementioned power-up and bounty types. Shrines are a new type of building that can be teleported to and offer a buff to allied players when activated. They don't provide vision and only become vulnerable when its team loses all of its Tier 2 towers. And there is a new ancient neutral camp and a ton of adjustments to the overall map and jungle layouts.

Things will be different before ever getting into a match, as the pre-game phase sees some changes, too. The selection screen now looks like the character gallery, offering filters and a search function. New information is also presented to give you an overview of each character and of your overall team composition, and alt-clicking a character recommends it to the rest of the team.

Once character selections have been made, teams get 30 seconds to strategize, during which they can plan who will take which lane, purchase starting items, and change their loadouts. While this is happening, the game starts loading in the background.

There's even more to this update, including redesigned heroes, a ton of balance changes, and other improvements. Full details are available on the 7.00 update section of the Dota 2 website. All of this is playable on test servers now, with an official launch coming today.

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Avatar image for Xan26

Why do MOBA companies like Sun Wukong that much? Smite has it, League of Legends has it, now Dota 2 has it, and there's plenty of blatant rip-offs that has it, and it always has the same abilities. Where does that weird fixation comes from? Dragon Ball?

Avatar image for csward

This is shocking. I can't believe they're changing the game this much and copying a talent system from Heroes of the Storm of all places. I mean their community thinks HotS is "casual" and "not good", so I wonder what the DotA community thinks of these changes.

Avatar image for Arkhalipso

@csward: HoTS is based around talents only. This new "talents" adition to dota is just a plus to depth since it only replaces level points that you used to use on stats when you had your skills maxed out. You still need to buy items and level up your skills.

Avatar image for s1taz4a3l

@csward: Its clear you dont play Dota, the talents replace 9 levels +1 to attributes that had little to no effect in the game other than macro crtl + to get that out of the way since it lock your ability keys, if you going to " complain" do so in the fact that talent lv25 for supports are all great but seriously a support hitting 25 in a average game... that rarely happen.

Giving antimage 3 second blinks is absurd IMO.

Avatar image for esperxvi

@csward: HotS is casual because it has notably less depth than the average MOBA, primarily because of its lack of equipment. Valve borrowing from that game to add ~more~ depth to DOTA is definitely not casualizing so it's not going to be a victim of the HotS syndrome.

Overall it seems to me like this update is making the game more dynamic and complex. The new map, creep camp, rune changes, talent system, more sceptres for heroes... the whole meta is going to shift in a big way. This is going to be like a mini reboot, so overall I think it will generate a lot of interest. Whether the changes are good at the end of the day remains to be seen.

Avatar image for ballashotcaller

@esperxvi: HOTS has more meaningful depth. Whereas DOTA 2 has depth in tons of characters and equipment, HOTS has strong characters with different talent specs, different maps, objectives, mercenaries, and the best part is the ability to come back from an almost definite loss. Matches are 30 minutes max (can be won in 10) and its all action but DOTA 2 can go up to an hour and has tons of grinding and requiring you to click on a minion at the correct time to get the exp. HOTS let's you focus on strategies. If a player is not that great, you're not penalized for it as much because of the shared exp. I played both and will never play DOTA 2 again but to each his own.

Avatar image for esperxvi

@ballashotcaller: Respectfully, I don't buy your argument that HotS has more 'meaningful' depth. HotS is very easy and fast to learn, unlike DOTA, and your hero will generally be the same as most other heroes (including talents, which are frequently better/worse in obvious ways). I don't see a lot of flexibility in their system of progression, which is why it's generally labelled as casual.

As far as maps and objectives, I give Blizzard a nod for some interesting concepts. But I'd much rather have a game focusing on deep individual characters working together to master a complex board with varied objectives, than have a game like HotS which basically has simplistic heroes gunning for the same couple of objectives throughout the entire game. And HotS is so straight-forward that it's twice as annoying (at least for me) when people ignore those objectives.

I would also accuse HotS of being way too close to a button masher. Timing is much less involved than in DOTA, often it makes more sense to hit an ability every time it's off CD. The hero abilities aren't nearly as interesting or diverse, IMO, and without equipment you're basically losing out on 2-3+ abilities for each character, which creates a much more complex and difficult to master situation in DOTA. In HotS you pretty much know what you're getting after a few days, maybe a week of playing, though it will take more time to master heroes. In DOTA you will probably be learning for a year or more, particularly considering the huge number of heroes and the complexity of the carry-core-support-etc system, which HotS doesn't really support in as meaningful a way.

Oh and Ark has it right, last hitting in DOTA is ~not~ required just to get XP. Very misleading comment.

As you mentioned, I like HotS for its different maps, short games, and more focus on teamwork over carries. I think it's a well made game. But I dislike it more than I like it because it's way too simple for a MOBA and, lacking progression depth, combat doesn't feel very challenging and matches don't feel rewarding at the end of a game. I call it MOBA-lite.

Avatar image for Arkhalipso

@ballashotcaller: You clearly didn't play dota if you think you need to lasthit in order to get exp. Even though I can see why HoTS could be more appealing to some people, it really isn't better when it comes to depth, mechanics or heroes. At a decent MMR you'll see almost non-stop action around the map from the very beginning, and completing objectives is just as important.

Avatar image for mari3k

Dotas biggest problem is still, that only the one with the last hit gets the exp.

I know that the source code is that way, and this cant be changed. But in long term it will break this game...

Thats also why all people play lol, even if the far bigger price money is to earn in dota

Avatar image for Ghidoran

@mari3k: What you said is literally incorrect. Last hitters aren't the only heroes that get XP, everyone in the area does.

More people play LoL because it's a much more casual and accessible game, and because it released earlier and managed to build up a large community.

Avatar image for Godlikan

Yey finally Wukong!

Avatar image for noshotskill

7.00 is the biggest patch in 12 years. Can't wait to play later today.