It’s been almost six months since the last big patch release and while we are all desperately waiting for a new gameplay update, there is no denying 7.32 was a very good patch. Great hero and strategy diversity, as well as many small, incremental fixes made for a very eventful half-year and today we would like to take a trip down the memory lane to remember what 7.32 gave us.
This trend never fully made it to the professional scene, but everyone playing pubs at the start of the patch remembers how obnoxious Undying was. When his Decay was changed from “borrowing” HP through Strength to actually “Stealing” it, Undying quickly became the most contested and coveted hero even in high level pubs.
It didn’t even matter what role he was played in: he could be a very strong support, offlaner and sometimes even a Carry. By going for Shard and Echo Saber, he could easily lead to the enemy's extinction through zombie apocalypse.
For a period of time, until quite recently, Wraith Pact was by far the best item in the game. It was consequently nerfed and while we still feel it is being underutilized, we fully agree that it was way too powerful.
The problem was teams and players stopped picking Offlane heroes for their abilities, they started picking heroes who could get Wraith Pact as soon as, and as reliably as possible. For a period, heroes like Enigma and Visage were among the most popular characters in the game, but not necessarily because of their own strengths, but because of how powerful they became with Wraith Pact.
There were even some direct nerfs to the heroes in question, before Wraith Pact got nerfed. Right now they are definitely in a much worse position, since they essentially got hit twice, though the changes to other support and aura items do help in alleviating the problem.
All in all, the middle of the patch was absolutely dominated by Wraith Pact. It is rare to see an item so ubiquitous in Dota, but it was definitely worth it at the time.
By the end of the Wraith Pact era another hero started creeping up into meta. Broodmother initially was another “get Wraith Pact ASAP” hero, but she had more staying power even after the latter was nerfed. The reason for it was her Aghainm’s.
There are many good reasons why the hero doesn’t do well in pubs. Broodmother can’t really solo carry the late game, even if she dominates her lane. She also doesn’t offer a lot of teamfight utility.
What she does offer is an absolutely oppressive macro and her Aghanim’s Scepter with, essentially, Smoke-piercing capabilities only exacerbated the problem. Not only did Broomother get to occupy a sizable portion of the map while providing pressure and vision in her lane, she could also globally alert her teammates of incoming aggression. It doesn’t do a whole lot in regular pub games, but for a professional team information is everything and Broodmother was one of the best information gatherers in the game.
The initial post-TI period was dominated by a single item: Bloodstone. It never reached the popularity and success of Wraith Pact, but it did single handedly introduce multiple heroes into the meta.
You use it, you get a lot of extra HP and mana. Any kind of persistent AoE damage meant invincibility, while Bloodstone was active. Sure, there are many tools to deal with heal and regeneration, but most reliable anti-heal tools cost a lot more than Bloodstone itself, resulting in a very wide timing window for the Bloodstone carrier to abuse.
Since then, both Bloodstone and the heroes purchasing it received some very small nerfs. We believe that the Bloodstone approach to the game is still viable, it is just not as dominant and can’t be used in every single game.
This leads to the current state of the meta and it is no secret that the game is being dominated by Lina. Sure, some other carries appear once in a while, but this is mostly because you can’t have both teams playing Lina at the same time.
There is nothing to say about the hero that hasn’t been said already. She is simply that reliable and consistent, while also being above average in terms of power. There is no better hero in the current meta and even Lina “counters” don’t really work all that well.
She is also the reason we are truly desperate for a new patch. Her dominance is lasting a little bit too long and it doesn’t seem like players are finding answers to it. An outside intervention is necessary and hopefully we will get a new patch some time soon.
What are your hopes and dreams for it and what was the most memorable period in 7.32 for you personally? Share your thoughts in the comment section below.