Image by style_d
There are generally two types of heroes we all dread playing against. There are the ones we hate to play against because they are strong. There are also the ones we hate to play against because they are annoying. When stars align, these two characteristics come together and we get something absolutely abhorrent. Yeah, today is one of those blog posts.
We are not going to mince words: Tinker was the inspiration for this post in the first place and is by far the annoying character in the entire game. His whole kit is about sucking the fun out of the map for the other nine players involved.
This is usually fine, as the hero does take a while to take off and is quite skill-dependent, but lately he got a little bit too good. 56%+ win rate in Divine+ games with a 10%+ pick rate is very telling. Essentially, one can first phase pick Tinker every single game and have a lot of success.
Sure, there are some heroes Tinker struggles against. Static characters like Zeus, Nyx Assassin and some mobile heroes like Spectre, Anti-Mage or even Storm Spirit can technically deal with him, but they are far from being a hard-counter against a well-played Tinker.
The big problem is Tinker doesn’t need much nowadays. They took away his farming tool in March of the Machines and gave him a basic ability he needed a farming tool for in the first place in Keen Conveyance. Now, the moment Tinker is level 12 with Blink Dagger he is already close to unstoppable and he even saves on an item slot.
And it’s not like you can prevent the hero from farming well. Between Laser being AoE Pure damage for taking stacks and second item Shiva’s Guard, it is highly unusual for Tinker to fall behind.
Still, we feel like getting rid of Laser AoE would definitely be a step in the right direction. Let Tinker be this late-game monster, just make sure he doesn’t get there at minute 20.
Arc Warden is a very peculiar hero. His win rate rises with the skill level of players involved, but then sharply falls off at pro-level pubs. Essentially, unless you are playing top 2500 Immortal pubs, the hero is most like a problem for you. An incredibly annoying late-game problem that has multiple game-stalling mechanics built in.
The hero farms very fast, but we feel like it isn’t the problem. Between the potential double hero, hence double Maelstrom and double Hand of Midas, he can accelerate to his other key items, but this mechanic is fine. We have other heroes like Alchemist and well-laned Anti-Mage, Naga Siren or Terrorblade who absolutely takeoff net worth-wise and they don’t always feel annoying.
The problem is Arc Warden gets to be annoying and utilize the full extent of his net worth with little to no repercussions. Moreover, later on he gets to have a 40% cooldown reduction on his Tempest Double and it means very low cooldown Scythe of Vyse, Overwhelming Blink and Bloodthorn.
What it means is that the enemy team has to commit resources comparable to the resources they need to commit for an actual hero to get a kill on Tempest Double and while they do get a nice bounty, there is no opening created for actually progressing the game.
They can’t necessarily push or take Roshan, since the Arc team still has their full roster. Moreover, with some stalling, they most likely will have another Tempest Double in a couple of seconds, making Arc clone kills a very frustrating exercise in futility.
We don’t know how to solve this conundrum, but having a guaranteed sub-40 second “respawn timer” on Tempest Double feels wrong. Considering it can be further reduced to 30 seconds with Octarine Core, the frustration with the hero is very understandable.
We don’t have a solution to this problem, but we understand why it exists: the hero isn’t too good in the professional scene and we fully support Valve balancing the game around the absolute highest level of play. It makes for a much better game design, even if it is a bit unfortunate for a large part of the playerbase. Still, we are certain that there is a creative solution to this problem.
Perhaps you have one? If so, share your ideas in the comment section below.