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Strategy Guide for Anub'arak, the Nerubian

by Tkc]Fear (as of v6.60)
1: Hero overview

Why to play NA? NA is one of best, if not the best, ganker in game. He is viable on any lane,
even solo mid. He is not too much item dependent and needs so little to be so effective. However
if you want to play this awesome hero on high level you will need much practice to fully master
his skills. In pubs I see him played as DPS/agility carry hero which is totally wrong. I hope this
guide helps to change that.

Detailed information and hero story can be found here.

2: Skill overview


Mechanics: 0.75/1.25/1.75/2.25 second stun. 400 casting range and 200 AoE. CD of 11. Mana
cost of 95/115/135/155. Reaches up to 500 distance. Deals 60/120/172.5/225 damage to hero
type armor targets. Linken does not block it. You can't Impale an Impaled unit by clicking on it ,
clicking on the ground will Impale it again.

How to use it: It your main lane control skill/stun/nuke and great spell overall. 225 damage at
level 4 (after reduction) is much early game and can be used either to harras or impale-farm (try
to hit hero as well). Combined with other skills makes you feared. Magic immunity blocks it,
Linken sphere does not.

Mana burn

Mechanics: Deals 52.5/90/138.75/195 damage to hero armor type targets. Cooldown of 7

seconds. Mana cost of 65/85/100/115. Casting range of 500/575/650/725. Linken sphere does
block it. Same with magic immunity.

How to use it: Use it combined with Impale. If you are fast and experienced you can MB enemy
while he is still in air from Impale effect. Obviously, if enemy does not have mana it won't be
burned. In case he has fewer mana then spell burns it will be burnt and damage dealt accordingly.
Spiked carpace

Mechanics: Returns 10%/20%/30%/40% damage to melee attackers and gives 2/4/6/8 bonus
armor. Fully stacks with blademail. Returns magical damage, reduced by 25% natural spell
resistance on hero armor type targets and negated by spell immunity.

How to use it: Useless skill, at least in my opinion. Take if you face 5 melee heroes in enemy
team (read never).


Mechanics: Duration of 20/35/50 seconds. Cooldown of 90/75/60 seconds. Mana cost of

160/210/280. Deals 225/375/525 normal damage reduced by target's armor or Vanguard/Stout
shield/Kraken shell. Also gives 10%/15%/20% MS bonuses. Activating this skill does not cancel
channeling spells. You can use Boots of Travel and then use this skill without canceling the
teleportation. Vendetta backstab damage cannot be evaded, unless by means of a triggered

How to use it: NA's signature ability. Can be used for ganking/escaping/chasing. Use it before
gank, where enemy can't see you then sneak on their back and rapidly cast all your skills. This
combo will finish almost every hero early and mid game. If you get ganked you can escape with
it. Also, due to MS bonus, can be used for chasing fleeing heroes. On LVL 3 it gives "permanent"
invisiblity due to CD beeing 60 and duration 50 which means you are invis 90% of time. Abuse

3: Skill build and justification

1. Mana burn
2. Impale
3. Mana burn
4. Impale
5. Impale
6. Vendetta
7. Impale
8. Mana burn
9. Mana burn
10. Attribute bonus
11. Vendetta

Justification: Mana burn is taken first unless you plan to go LVL1 FB, in which case you take
stun over MB. MB gives you lane control and is spammable due to low mana cost. Also, by
burning enemy mana, it prevents them from nuke harassing you. Impale is maxed first as stun &
nuke. Vendetta taken whenever possible as it is great ultimate and no reason to be skipped.
Spiked carpace has no use and attribute bonuses benefit you way more. Take it 22-25 unless
some extreme situation.
4: Item builds and their usage

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Core item build

As I said NA is not item dependent so this is all he needs to rape opposition. BoS is gotten for
obvious reasons, it's must item for any ganker.

Don't get me wrong Dagon ( 2,850 ) is crap item not worth it's price but on NA it's simply
brilliant since you are using burst spell damage to be effective/get kill. It has great synergy with
your skills and should be gotten ASAP.

Necronomicon ( 2,750 + 2x1300 ) is great item for NA in every way. But reason I did not list this
item over Dagon is fact that it needs lots of skill at microing to be used correctly, to full
potential. More about this item can be found here.

*NOTE: I don't suggest upgrading Dagon because you get minor changes for much gold. Also if
you are laning solo mid I suggest getting Bottle.

More detailed information about Dagon can be found here.

Total of 3,835 gold for core item build is not much and can be farmed by 20 mins in decent game
(most of your gold will be coming from hero kills).

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Item build afterwards

Boots of Travel ( 2,200 ) are gotten for map mobility and due to high MS it gives combined with
Vendetta. I see people buying PT on NA. It is not bad on him but IAS is wasted and he needs
TP/huge MS more then some extra HP/MP and IAS. More information about this item can be
found here.

Diffusal blade ( 3,300 ) is gotten if you prefer it or if enemy team has Omni/WL and you don't
have better wielder for DB. I don't suggest upgrading it into Manta style.More information about
this item can be found here.

Guinsoo Scythe of Vyse ( 5,675 ) is great item for NA due to bonuses it gives. NA benefits from
all of them starting from 3.5 second disable, known as Hex. Mana regen and stat bonuses are
nice as well. More information about this item can be found here.
*NOTE: Shiva's Guard / Orchid are both viable on him and if they suit your gameplay style get

Total of 11,175 gold. You won't be able to farm this in any decent game unless you/your team is
owning big time. I suggest choosing item that suits your gameplay best. I prefer going

Now list of items which should never be bought for NA along with justifications.

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DPS items

Sange & Yasha ( 5,000 ) are for some unknown reason bought often on NA. You give 5000 gold
for medicore MS bonus, 304 HP and some damage/IAS (which is wasted)? Never. Your role is
not to DPS but to cast/gank. Let carry's DPS.

Butterfly ( 6,000 ) is gotten on him as well, at least in pubs. We are playing ganker here not DPS-
er therefore this 6000 gold is totally wasted. If you want to buy Butterfly play Void or something.

As good as it may look on NA, Battlefury ( 4,350 ), is nowhere near good. Mana regen is good
for NA but give 4,350 just for it? Never. Damage is totally wasted, most times you won't even
have to use normal attack expect when using Vendetta. Once more I say, let DPS/carry do the

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Lifesteal items

Lifesteal is very 1337 and cool but it isn't for NA. Firstly he doesn't have IAS to support and
benefit from it. Secondly, no damage to benefit from lifesteal. Therefore lifesteal is fail. Pubbers
often buy Vladimir's offering ( 2,075 ) because of shiny aura. Only thing you get for 2100 gold
there is medicore mana regen. Some other hero in your team will get it and have more use of it
and you will still have aura. Same with Satanic.

5: Playing NA


After ganking, best part of beeing NA! On lane you are feared enemy. MB/Impale give you
amazing lane control. You are viable anywhere. Solo anywhere or dual lane anywhere.
Personally I like laning solo mid or dual lane bottom. When you are solo mid you should get
Bottle (runewhore) in your item build and gank as soon as you see chance, even from low levels.
Make sure you leave enemy without mana so he can't nuke you while you LH. Try to get fast
Dagon/Necrobook. Also as NA player you have to keep eye on enemy mana pools when ganking
because if enemy does not have mana one of your nukes is worthless!

Early game you can kill almost every single hero with your combo. Abuse it. Also you are very
hard to kill due to Vendetta.

Mid game

By now you should have Dagon or Necro book and Travels. Your role in team battles is to pick
weakest enemy hero or most dangerous ones and neutralize them. You shouldn't be farming as
your primary role is to gank not to carry. Whenever you see enemy hero alone use that chance.

Late game

Try to get Guinsoo at this time. And hope your carry will do the job. You still do the same,
picking low HP heroes and eliminating them. Use BoT to counter-push/defend. Nothing much
more to say about this period.

6: Best allies and worst enemies

Best allies

Once again, NA is viable on any lane. Best is to play him solo mid or combined with

Ranged disablers

These guys are perfect for your lane partner. With little skill you can chain stun/disable enemy
and go for FB at level 3! Lane like this is fearsome and if there is possibility always lane with

those. Even better then my favourite solo mid hehe


These guys are great when you are ganking as you can chain stun with them and ensure kill.
Watch every chance to gank their lane and get those kills.


Great as lane partners as well due to huge ammount of burst damage you can unleash together.
Laning with Lich/Zeus (spell spammers) will allow you to LH without interuption most of the
time and they'll keep enemies at low HP allowing you to go for kill at most times.

Here are heroes which are your worst enemies.

Magic immune

BKB or magic immunity is best counter to NA. When they are immune you can't hit 'em. When
you can't hit 'em you can't kill 'em. Annoying. Also Void can be annoying enemy backtracking
your every attempt to kill him.


When you are silenced you can't, obviously, cast spells. And when you can't cast spells you are
kinda useless. So watch carefully for these guys and enemy team Orchid's.

7: Replays

rule Them all DotA vs ImBaSkiLLeDPLaYeRs

Download Replay

This replay is showing how viable NA is solo mid. I will more when I get them.

8: Conclusion

NA is great hero and maybe best ganker in game. Should be picked or banned in any decent
game. However, he needs skilled player and practice to maximize potential. Often played wrong,
DPS way, which saddens me as it wastes his ganking potential. I hope this guide can help
changing that. In case you play him this way I hope you learnt something new from here anyway.
Thanks for reading my guide and good luck

• Ice Frog, for making such an awesome map
• Femisa, for feeding me whenever I play NA
• Zecro, for Necrobook correction
• You, for reading this guide
If there is anything you think I should change in this guide, feel free to post so. I will take everything in consideration. Thank you.

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