Edit: Patch 7.29 is live. You can read the full patch notes here
Patch 7.29 is set to arrive on April 9, 2021, with a host of potential changes to heroes, items and the economy. In addition, as announced by Valve, a new hero is also getting released with this patch which will take the total Dota 2 hero count to 121. While previously, there have always been some hints regarding the new hero, this time, all speculations by Dota 2 fans have been based around the Dota 2 anime. On the other hand, patch 7.29 is getting revealed three months after 7.28 was unveiled in December 2020 with Hoodwink. In this case, while the community is hoping for some nerfs and buffs to certain heroes, the big change they expect is to the economy and the map.
Here is a look at what all one can expect from this April 9 update.
New Hero Possibilities - Selemene, Marci and Fymryn
Although other possibilities do exist, many expect the new hero to be someone from the Dota: Dragon’s Blood anime on Netflix. Three of the most likely of these are Marci, Selemene, and Fymryn.
If Selemene is the new hero, she will ideally be a magic damage based hero with spells that fall from the sky similar to Mirana’s Starstorm, Luna’s Lucent Beam and Invoker’s Sunstrike and Chaos Meteor.
Fymryn has the most fleshed-out skills showcased in the anime. She is an elf who can make illusions, rapidly change positions, and go invisible. All these abilities have already existed in Dota 2 for a long time and it won’t be a surprise Fymryn is revealed as the new hero with an altered form of these abilities.
Fymryn as an alternative personality for Phantom Lancer could also be amazing.
Map and economy changes
Dota 2 has been considered stale for a long time now since there has not been any change that has drastically changed the way the game functions. Patch 7.28 introduced Aghanim’s Shards, but that has not changed the flow of the game. Players tend to ignore it on more heroes till they become six-slotted. The last big patch that saw the map and gold/experience changes was 7.27 that was released way back in June 2020.
Changes in the Outpost position or perhaps the removal of outposts is a possible step towards changing the players’ approach towards the game. Outposts, Bounties and Roshan are the three major objectives around which fights seem to take place these days so a change in their position or their benefits can significantly impact how the players approach the game. Changes to the jungle camps and paths have always led to players devising new strategies to kill creeps effectively, find new Ward locations, and take fights from the high ground.
Comebacks are foregone as most professional games are now won in the laning phase, or some, even in the drafts. Changes to the comeback mechanism could also make the game much more enjoyable.
Nerfs to most popular heroes
Puck and Io are two heroes that are undoubtedly going to receive a nerf in the coming patch. While Puck was the most picked hero with 58 picks at the ONE Esports Singapore Major with an impressive 62% win rate, Io, who was banned in the first phase in most games, was picked 19 times with a 63% win rate. While Io is still a preferred choice for a few teams in the support role, the hero has been notorious for being a strong carry. The hero had hardly lost any game at the ONE Esports Singapore Major when played in the carry role.
Death Prophet, Enigma and Void Spirit in the mid lane, Troll Warlord and Monkey King in the safe lane, Mars and Beastmaster in the off lane, Tusk and Phoenix in the position four role, and Pangolier and Abaddon in the position five role, are some of the heroes who were actively chosen at the Major and might be receiving heavy nerfs in patch 7.29.
Buffs to forgotten heroes
The nerfhammer so severely hit faceless Void and Sven in 7.28 that they have completely fallen out of teams’ priority. While Faceless Void suffered a humiliating defeat the one time it was picked in the finals of the Major, Sven was also picked just three times.
Tinker has also been out of meta for a long time and is hardly considered by any top-tier teams.
Other heroes that might be getting solid buffs include Drow Ranger, Lich, Ogre Magi, and Night Stalker. Player hero choices after the buffs and nerfs will also be dependent on how the map and economy changes.
It is also time that Valve unveils the Spectre Arcana as it was officially declared as the winner of the Arcana Vote in October 2020. Dota 2 fans have been patiently waiting for it since then and now would be a good time to release it along with the patch and the hero.