Find out what pros are playing ahead of The International 2023 (TI12) which will likely play out on Patch 7.34c.
We have two weeks before Dota 2's biggest tournament of the year, The International 12 (TI12), commences in Seattle, USA. This TI will showcase the best Dota played on Patch 7.34c (or another if we get sudden patch changes before the event). So let's take a look at what the meta is and what heroes we can expect to thrive at The International 12.
Dota 2 meta from DreamLeague Season 21
For a good look at the current state of the pro scene meta, let's magnify the heroes of DreamLeague Season 21. This is ESL Pro Tour's $1 million tournament which had pit many TI12 teams together right before TI12 starts.
Pre-TI12 Meta: Most picked heroes
As per usual, the most picked heroes come from the supporting role. These heroes are usually universally great but not too overpowered - making them instant picks in most games.
The most picked hero from DL S21 was Vengeful Spirit, with 35/86 games. She has a solid 54% win rate which proves her powerful state. Vengeful Spirit is a strong laner with a high-damage stun and an armor reduction spell. But her strongest point is her ultimate, Swap, which is able to turn the flow of fights and is a reliable way to save allies.
Shadow Demon joins the pre-TI12 meta as the second most popular hero with 31 picks in DL S21. However, its win rate isn't looking too attractive, dropping to 36% during the tournament. It is another trending support in the pro scene, mainly due to its ability to save allies and delay fights with Disruption.
And of course, Warlock makes a comeback during the TI season. This hero is the third most picked during DL S21. Warlock has always been an insane team-fighting hero with massive AoE spells. But on top of that, Warlock received big buffs during the 7.34 patch which added stronger Golems and a really powerful Imp-spawning Upheaval.
Pre-TI12 Meta: Most banned heroes
While the most picked are universally great, banned heroes are usually the strongest on the board. These heroes likely can cause too much chaos and nuisance that teams do not want to deal with.
The most-banned lineup is led by the Invoker with 76 total bans in 86 games! His massive AoE damage abilities coupled with his high lifesteal make him a very strong hero. Invoker is also now a Universal hero which makes his damage insanely high. On top of that, Invoker's Agh Shard is also one of the most irritating spells to deal with as it pulls enemies like a mini Black Hole.
Next to Invoker is the Brewmaster with 75 total bans. This hero, by nature, is made to create chaos on the map with Primal Split. The Cyclone ability, among others, is incredibly strong. It can take out an enemy from a fight for long enough, forcing the enemies to clash with a handicap.
And finally, we have Pangolier in the third place with 68 bans. This hero didn't receive any great buffs recently but it is a very powerful crowd control hero. Its ultimate, Rolling Thunder, is not only able to delay fights but also used to give vision and break Smoke. Pangolier is also now a Universal hero which helps increase his first spell's damage.
Here is an image of the most popular heroes from DL S21 from Liquipedia.