The Group Stage for the Bali Major is over and it is time to have a quick look at what works and what doesn’t at the highest level of competitive play. If you thought that the meta was set in stone, think again, because it looks like a lot of things are changing.
Pugna and Undying are doing consistently well in this tournament, which shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone. Strong lane dominators with massive save and healing potential are what most teams are looking for in supports in this teamfight-oriented meta.
Pugna is especially impressive, with his 56% winrate, but be vary that this hero needs a good pairing to tap into his full potential. He can be casually picked in everyday pubs, but the hero is at his best when played alongside heroes like Storm Spirit.
Medusa also belongs to this category of high popularity and high success heroes of the current meta, but this is very much old news. The hero requires a counterpick during the drafting stage and is problematic even with guaranteed bans in Captains Mode. In All Pick, this hero should still be a priority.
Several heroes seem to be doing a little bit too well. Most notably, it is Broodmother, who is comfortably sitting at ~70% winrate across 36 games. The hero is busted, but I’ve already talked about it in one of the more recent posts.
Joining Broodmother, there are several less OP, but still very strong heroes like Clockwerk and Windranger. The latter was nerfed recently, but still remains a menace. Between built-in survivability and Universal Attribute, the hero simply deals a bit too much damage, while staying alive.
Clockwerk is a slightly less expected hero on the list. He was making progress since the start of the patch, but it was not until the resurgence of ranged cores that he started being mainstream. The hero pairs very nicely with a lot of heroes, but most notably he works wonders on a team where the offlane hero either lacks initiation prowess, or has very long cooldowns. This makes him invaluable in pubs, though it is preferable to lane him with a ranged core.
Several heroes are performing a bit worse than expected. Teams have trained them, they want to play them, but they don’t work out consistently. Perhaps these heroes have been nerfed recently, or they were simply figured out, but I feel like soon this trend will follow pubs as well.
Most notably, Beastmaster and Terrorblade are heavily underperforming. I feel like the former is being played way too greedy and can’t be a reliable playmaker in the early midgame with Aghanim's build, when the team needs him the most. If the opponent successfully invades your stacks at least once before minute ten, the Beastmaster tempo is just dead.
Terrorblade is a bit surprising, but as a hard-carry that relies on his team to set up a fight for him, he is strictly inferior to Medusa. It is easier to blow him up, he does less in a teamfight and he doesn’t even necessarily farm faster. Still, I feel like the hero is worth playing, it’s just this tournament is a bit too Morphling-focused, making Terrorblade’s life miserable.
There is also Disruptor, who has an abysmal ~26% winrate across 19 games. The hero is a lot weaker than he used to be: level one Thunder Strike went from being the best damage per mana ability in the game to one of the worst. Maxing it out isn’t an option either, resulting in a hero that does look amazing when you are ahead, but doesn’t really do anything from behind.
There are many other heroes who are also worth discussing. For example, Techies is definitely starting to feel a bit figured out, while heroes like Enigma are now dominating even from a support position. All in all, the meta is far from being set in stone, with a couple of interesting caveats we are going to discuss later this week.