With dust slowly settling down after what was an incredible event, it is time to commemorate the biggest tournament of the patch and look at it in more detail - especially with the new patch coming some time soon. 6.85b was one of the more balanced and diverse patches of late and it would be a shame not to study it in more detail as it is about to pass into history and Frankfurt Major makes for one hell of a study subject. Without further ado - Frankfurt Major Statistics Recap.
Even after significant nerfs the hero was picked or banned in 99% of the games in the LAN part of the tournament. Very much like Batrider at one point, it is not the numbers which matter for this hero, but rather the utility of his abilities. There is also a versatility factor - the hero can be played in the offlane and as a support and it opens up the draft for more possibilities, which is crucial at high levels of play.
Exactly 50% Win Rate, on the other hand, does not seem too impressive and possibly indicates that the hero is rather balanced. Moreover, our own meta data shows that Tusk has more or less the same Win Rate of 50% in 4k+ games - slowly rising from lower brackets. This leads to a conclusion that the hero might not be as overpowered as people make him out to be - he is just a solid pick which can be good in almost any situation.
Seeing SF in this list is very unsurprising - he is a hero which can boast a mix of Physical and Magical damage, can snowball really hard and is capable of not losing Mid against pretty much any solo hero. He has the ability to flash-farm and jungle early on, as well as participate in early game teamfights.
At the same time he is quite susceptible to early game pressure and can't catch up very well. He is also one of the weakest buyback heroes in the game. Overall, he is designed to get ahead and maintain the top position and can be pretty weak in other scenarios.
The bane of pubs (55% Win Rate in 5k+) was surprisingly unimpressive in the LAN part of the tournament - 48% Win Rate across 21 game is not exactly indicative of the hero being overvalued, but it does raise a question - is the hero really broken?
Yes and no. On one hand you have a rather impressive strength growth and a farming ability which doubles as a fighting one. On the other - if Doom is unable to trade himself up in a fight, with the general skill and item build on the hero, he will be less useful than many other offlaners.
He is a high risk-high reward hero which thrives in less coordinated pub games, but can be played around in the professional games as seen from statistics.
Our predictions about the hero being forgotten in the aftermath of 6.85 have been partially right. He was indeed forgotten until the very last stages of the tournament and for a hero which relies on stealth and surprise factor it is a huge boost.
Some teams were unprepared for the hero - even without the extra vision he still forces your team to play a very different Dota - trades suddenly become more beneficial for your enemy and if you have a fighting lineup you can get cornered in a situation where your pick can't fully actualize itself. To a certain degree it is also the psychological factor - even if you are substantially ahead, this hero can deter you from making aggressive moves - the price can be too high.
First stage Ember Spirit ban was one of the big reasons for the success of the hero - when a natural counter of the hero can be banned without openly indicating your pick it can create an opportunity for a strong surprise pick.
Equally as important is the fact that AoE heroes such as Lina and Leshrac, are rather unfavored in the current meta or even significantly weaker than they were before, thus making it possible for PL to get reach his true potential.
Not many professional players are capable of playing the hero, but the ones who do, play him in a very convincing manner. Most of the games, the hero was played in the fourth position which transitioned into a farming one 10-15 minutes into the game. It allowed the hero to have an immense impact at all stages of the game - the hero is already extremely strong in the early stages and can be devastating with items in the later ones.
I was honestly surprised to see so little of the hero - in the "-armor" meta he becomes even more potent. Hopefully we will see some professionals train the hero by the time the Winter Major arrives - he is always a lot of fun to watch.
Once again, a huge impact on pick and win rate of the hero are a result of his versatility - he can be played in the offlane, taking farm and experience to become a decent core, or he can support and roam, pressuring lanes. Either way - he is really strong, since even at level 1 he can make a huge difference with a well placed Fissure.
Interestingly, in pub games his win rate rises from <2k to 3-4k and then falls to its lowest in 5k+ games. Maybe creating a 4k pub environment for Miracle- also inadvertently helped Moonmeander in his impressive Earthshaker plays.
Even after what arguably was a nerf to an early game Tombstone, the hero looks rather impressive. His abilities make drawn out fights favor his team by a huge margin and it is clearly visible in the Game 3 of EG vs Secret series, where Secret had almost lost their advantage after a strategic mistake of deciding not to focus the Tombstone.
Interestingly enough, the Win Rate of the hero is at its highest in 2-3k MMR and gradually falls off as the MMR rises. Moreover, it is not as high as 60% in this tournament in either bracket - 57.29% at its best.
Imagine what the hero would be like, if she was still the same when she was introduced. All her spells used to pierce spell immunity and she deserved a series of huge nerfs - something I would never say lightly about one of my favorite heroes.
As it stands however, it might not have been enough. With a strong wave clear, a scaling slow and fight-turning ultimate, she is still one of the strongest supports in the game which needs close to nothing in terms of gold and XP - she is a capable fighter come level 7.
Her Win Rate is pretty similar across all MMR brackets. It is also the only hero with win rate/mmr not following a single trend - from <2k to 5k+ it is a wave with ups and downs.
picture by Windranger
I anticipate a huge argument in the comment section, but statistics are as objective as they can be - Windranger is overvalued. That doesn't however, mean she is not overpowered - in all fairness, she might be. With a solo kill potential on any hero in the game at almost any stage she remains a big threat and her pushing potential is almost unparalleled.
What I feel as a big problem is the unpredictable aspect of Shackleshot - it acts more or less in the same way as PA Crit does - meaning that it is almost completely random. The angle at which it latches seems to be different every single time the ability is cast - I've seen some very improbable ones as well as failed Shackles which clearly should have latched. Not to say skill does not matter - but in the most crucial moments it often came down to luck and game engine, which seems to be occasionally failing. Volvo plz.
If in case of Windranger there is still room for discussion on player skill and luck, in case of Lina it is pretty clear that she is weak not only as a hero in the current meta, but also as a hero in general. Huge nerfs which cost her a lot of damage from all abilities cast made a lot of difference - she is just not as potent late-game and is outclassed by many heroes.
Given how many tanky heroes are currently popular and how many popular heroes are going for tanky builds, it is unsurprising to see the hero fail so often. Moreover, many professional teams are currently almost dual-laining mid and Lina is just not as good in this situation - she needs solo XP, but she also needs farm, hence in common "unfair" 2v1 scenarios she is worse off.
Night Stalker is a greedy support which needs levels and items to be effective. Compare that to WW, for example, and you will understand why in the current rather fast-paced meta he is not as strong. At the same time he can snowball pretty hard - if his first night is a success it is possible for the team with NS to completely shut down the enemy - he gains needed items for solo kill potential in consecutive nights.
Late game most of his utility comes from flying vision and vision reduction on enemies. The tactical advantage Darkness provides is unparalleled - it ensures good Roshpit fights, initiation, map/vision control etc. The hero himself will remain pretty weak, yet one should never underestimate the power of silence on an enemy support/disabler or a well used slow.
Despite a rather low win rate, the hero remains one of the strongest killers in the game. Her game impact is boosted with a novelty build which ignores Aghanim's Scepter and goes for Black King Bar and Assault Cuirass instead. With a decent stat gain it results in a strong right-click hero which is among the strongest in the early game.
Interestingly, more often than not, the hero was not played mid, but rather in the offlane or even as a farming core - she can put out quite a bit of pressure on the enemy offlaner/withstand harass from enemy safelane and scales decently well with and/or without items into the mid game so each role is pretty viable. This versatility is another reason for hero popularity and, potentially, a reason for hero low Win Rate - sometimes teams cornered themselves with a core QoP against an unfavorable match-up.
We all know who is responsible for this amazing KDA on a hero - shoutout to EternalEnvy and best of luck in the future tournaments!
Pro players praise aside, the hero is indeed really strong - an ability to safely farm and splitpush cannot be underrated in the current meta and he doesn't even need to sacrifice his teamfight potential for this. Despite being extremely weak until level 6, the hero is amazing at playing catch-up and scales amazingly well into the late game. Comeback gold mechanics are also a pretty huge factor for the hero - it is not uncommon for him to end up with a huge amount of gold after a successful fight.
The combo-master with a great laning stage, decent damage output and amazing scaling is back in the meta and we couldn't be happier - the hero is a lot of fun to watch and his setups can result in amazing and beautiful Dota moments.
Being one of the few heroes which can offlane well and jungle from level 1, he is the least susceptible to strong trilanes and early-game teamfight lineups - he will get his core Mekansm in a timely manner and it will turn around a lot of fights.
On top of that, his ability to play catch is among the strongest in the game and coupled with a chase hero he won't let anyone escape from the fight he just turned around.