What are the pros playing before the Stockholm Major?
Before the Major begins, let’s take a look at the Stockholm Major participants’ most-played heroes the last week.
A fresh patch just dropped and the Stockholm Major is almost here. There is no doubt that we'll see new heroes, new strategies, and new tactics on the table. And while we're burning with anticipation, why not take a peek into the future... through pub games.
As one of the main training grounds, pubs almost always reflect what the pro players are practicing and experimenting with. Before the Major begins in several more days, let's take a look at what the Stockholm Major participants are playing the last week.
*All data are taken from Dota 2 Pro Tracker.
HIGHLIGHT: Aside from the typical meta heroes, look out for Visage and Nature’s Prophet - they're both spammed a lot in the Carry role. There are plenty of Sven Support picks, which is something we haven't seen in ages. Doom and Pangolier seem to be hot picks across different roles. Necrophos Carry is not a rare sight, with almost all core players picking the hero at least once.
Aside from the normal picks, ATF has been spamming Huskar 11 times in the last 8 days, followed by Razor and Viper. It could be that OG is experimenting with a Doom position 4 as it was Taiga's most played hero. Misha spammed a lot of Oracle, which is not really common among the Major attendees.
OG's top 3 most-played heroes in the last 8 days (smurf accounts included):
- Yuragi: Visage (1), Templar Assassin (1), Juggernaut (1)
- bzm: Invoker (9), Storm Spirit (8), Sand King (3)
- ATF: Huskar (11), Razor (5), Viper (4)
- Taiga: Doom (8), Death Prophet (4), Enigma (4)
- Misha: Oracle (10), Bane (3), Viper (3)
The dark horses of WEU have an interesting set of hero choices. dyrachYO has been practicing a lot of Sven and Bloodseeker, a pair of unconventional Carry in the last few patches. BOOM had a great week with a high win rate - spamming Templar Assassin more than other heroes.
GG's top 3 most-played heroes in the last 8 days (smurf accounts included):
- dyrachYO: Sven (7), Bloodseeker (5), Anti-Mage (2)
- BOOM: Templar Assassin (8), Pangolier (4), Invoker (2)
- Ace: Slardar (1), Underlord (1), Tidehunter (1)
- tofu: Pugna (3), KOTL (2), Techies (2)
- Seleri: Winter Wyvern (2), Crystal Maiden (1), Jakiro (1)
All Liquid players seem to have a good time in pubs, boasting a green win rate. MATUMBAMAN spammed a TON of Nature's Prophet, followed by Clinkz; both were not very popular carry heroes previously. Liquid also seems to love Visage. MATUMBAMAN picked this hero once and it was miCKe's most played hero.
Liquid's top 3 most-played heroes in the last 8 days (smurf accounts included):
- MATUMBAMAN: Nature's Prophet (10), Clinkz (8), Medusa (4)
- miCKe: Visage (7), Void Spirit (2), Faceless Void (2)
- zai: Doom (3), Timbersaw (2), Mars (2)
- iNSaNiA: Oracle (2), KOTL (2), Undying (2)
It's always interesting to look at Tundra's hero choices, as they are even known for setting trends in pubs. Nine is spotted playing a variety of mid heroes including Nature's Prophet and Doom. Interestingly, he also played 3 matches of midlane Crystal Maiden, building items like Moon Shard and Monkey King Bar.
This might be another signature Nine move coming at the Stockholm Major. Saksa is seen spamming a support Sven - something we haven't seen for a while.
Tundra's top 3 most-played heroes in the last 8 days (smurf accounts included):
- skiter: Medusa (6), Anti-Mage (3), Clinkz (3)
- Nine: Storm Spirit (7), Nature's Prophet (6), Doom (5)
- 33: Underlord (8), Visage (6), Doom (6)
- Saksa: Sven (3), Pango (2), Winter Wyvern (2)
- Sneyking: Death Prophet (3), Pugna (3), Chaos Knight (3)
Daxak and Larl weren't very active with only 1 match the last week. Offlaner Noticed was spamming a lot of Doom and Underlord, a seemingly popular pick now. The last few days, SoNNeikO spammed Winter Wyvern, and it's quite the go-to tournament support pick.
- Daxak: Nature's Prophet (1)
- Larl: Templar Assassin (1)
- Noticed: Doom (5), Underlord (3), Viper (2)
- Forcemajor: KOTL (6), Mirana (2), Pudge (2)
- SoNNeikO: Techies (3), Hoodwink (3), Winter Wyvern (3)
There is nothing too bizarre on Spirit's side of the coin. Both core players played a lot of pub matches and TORONTOTOKYO mostly played Doom the last week. His next two heroes are also somewhat unconventional at the midlane for the last patch - Mars and Windranger. For all 3 heroes, he had a 50% win rate.
Team Spirit's top 3 most-played heroes in the last 8 days (smurf accounts included):
- Yatoro: Templar Assassin (5), Tiny (5), Phantom Assassin (3)
- TORONTOTOKYO: Doom (6), Mars (4), Windranger (4)
- Collapse: Faceless Void (1), Vengeful Spirit (1), Night Stalker (1)
- Mira: Snapfire (3), Grimstroke (3), Enchantress (2)
- Miposhka: Weaver (1)
Players of Mind Games played a lot of pubs except for offlaner, Petushara. Their Support players definitely love Hoodwink and Windranger as a Support.
Mind Games' top 3 most-played heroes in the last 8 days (smurf accounts included):
- Dinozavrik: Juggernaut (4), Faceless Void (3), Medusa (3)
- Ainkrad: Pangolier (6), Tiny (4), Templar Assassin (4)
- Petushara: Timbersaw (1)
- Bignum: Hoodwink (11), Windranger (4), Rubick (4)
- Slayer: Hoodwink (12), Elder Titan (8), Windranger (6)
Raven spammed a lot of Visage with 9 games and a 56% winrate. Following Visage, Clinkz is his 2nd most played hero. Armel played a TON of Sniper but he suffered a low win rate, losing 6 of the games likely because he was experimenting with an early Moon Shard build.. Maybe it's something we'll see at the Stockholm Major.
Fnatic's top 3 most-played heroes in the last 8 days (smurf accounts included):
- Raven: Visage (8), Clinkz (5), Ursa (4)
- Armel: Sniper (8), Storm Spirit (6), Templar Assassin (5)
- Jabz: Sand King (2), Brewmaster (2), Doom (1)
- Dj: Earth Spirit (1)
- Jaunuel: IO (6), Pugna (6), Pangolier (3)
Yopaj played a lot of Pangolier in the midlane, aside from the normal mid heroes. Skem played a variety of heroes, mostly KOTL and Mirana. Interestingly, he also picked up a couple of Sven in the support role, a pattern we can now trace.
BOOM's top 3 most-played heroes in the last 8 days (smurf accounts included):
- JaCkky: Lifestealer (3), Slark (2), Juggernaut (2)
- Yopaj: Pangolier (5), Ember Spirit (4), Monkey King (4)
- Fbz: Sand King (3), Pangolier (3), Beastmaster (3)
- Tims: Grimstroke (3), Hoodwink (3), Shadow Shaman (2)
- skem: KOTL (4), Mirana (4), Sven (3)
Gabbi hasn’t had a good week in pubs with only 29% win rate over 34 matches. And the odd thing is.. he played mostly in the midlane. Kuku played a bunch of Pangolier as well as Nature’s Prophet. Xepher also played a lot of Pangolier and once again, Sven is played as a support in a couple of games. Another peculiar thing is, Whitemon spammed several Hard Support Techies games - so the Stockholm Major might be a little explosive.
T1's top 3 most-played heroes in the last 8 days (smurf accounts included):
- Gabbi: Void Spirit (5), Faceless Void (4), Tiny (3)
- karl: Ember Spirit (2), Death Prophet (2), Snapfire (1)
- Kuku: Pangolier (8), Nature's Prophet (5), Dragon Knight (4)
- Xepher: Pangolier (7), Phoenix (4), Sven (3)
- Whitemon: Lion (8), Techies (4), Ogre Magi (1)
Arteezy played a versatile pool of carry heroes including glimpses of Naga Siren and even Necrophos. Cr1t on the other hand was spamming a ton of different heroes, with Pangolier and Windranger being his most-played heroes. Like the other teams, EG also has its Doom spammer. Nightfall played more Doom than any other heroes the last week, boasting a 67% win rate.
EG's top 3 most-played heroes in the last 8 days (smurf accounts included):
- Arteezy: Medusa (4), Templar Assassin (4), Ursa (3)
- Abed: Lina (4), Pangolier (2), Meepo (2)
- Nightfall: Doom (6), Timbersaw (2), Viper (2)
- Cr1t-: Pangolier (5), Windranger (5), IO (4)
- Jerax: Enchantress (1), Bane (1)
Timado's most-played hero was Chaos Knight, meanwhile, on his smurf account he played Nature's Prophet the most. Amidst an abundance of Storm Spirit picks, Bryle also played a bunch of Pangolier and Puck. SabeRLighT played a TON of pub matches spamming different set of heroes. His most played is Mars, followed by Sand King. Moonmeander played a lot of IO as well as Monkey King, opting for a Bloodthorn build for the latter.
TSM's top 3 most-played heroes in the last 8 days (smurf accounts included):
- Timado: Nature's Prophet (5), Chaos Knight (5), Templar Assassin (3), Tiny (3)
- Bryle: Storm Spirit (5), Pangolier (4), Puck (3)
- SabeRLighT: Mars (8), Sand King (8), Viper (6)
- MoonMeander: IO (7), Monkey King (5), Enchantress (4)
- Dubu: Enchantress (6), Crystal Maiden (6), Winter Wyvern (6)
The South American team is not fooling around. The whole team played an insane number of pub matches the last week. The carry player is spotted playing a lot of Nature's Prophet, similar to other carry players of Stockholm Major. Only on Storm Spirit alone, DarkMago spammed the hero a total of 30 times in the last 8 days!
TA's top 3 most-played heroes in the last 8 days (smurf accounts included):
- Pakazs: Nature's Prophet (8), Tiny (5), Storm Spirit (4)
- DarkMago: Storm Spirit (30), Batrider (14), Tiny (8)
- Sacred: Timbersaw (10), Pangolier (7), Necrophos (5)
- Matthew: Ember Spirit (12), Weaver (10), Void Spirit (10)
- Pandaboo: Bane (10), Death Prophet (9), Pugna (8)
Another Storm Spirit spammer lies in beastcoast. Chris Luck played the hero 12 times the last week, followed by Monkey King and Leshrac. Wisper played a lot of different heroes across 66 total matches with Dragon Knight being his favorite.
beastcoast's top 3 most-played heroes in the last 8 days (smurf accounts included):
- K1: Anti-Mage (6), Phantom Lancer (5), Wraith King (4)
- Chris Luck: Storm Spirit (12), Monkey King (9), Leshrac (9)
- Wisper: Dragon Knight (9), Timbersaw (7), Legion Commander (5)
- Scofield: Timbersaw (9), Shadow Demon (9), Grimstroke (8)
- Stinger: Enigma (2), Sand King (1), Visage (1)
There is definitely a pattern that can be drawn and they will potentially be brought forth at the Stockholm Major. These uncommon hero picks can already be seen in the recently concluded Gamers Without Borders tournament. But whether or not we'll be surprised by secret drafts or we'll see this exact pattern at the Dota 2 Major.. only time would tell.
Until then, stay tuned to Esports.gg for more Dota 2 news and updates!