Dota 2 has had its latest huge update, bringing in a brand new hero, changes to the map layout, buffs, nefs and tweaks across the board. 

Arguably more important than a hero you might see some of the time when she’s not instantly banned is a map you’ll see all of the time. The new map changes, best illustrated by the old vs new sliders on the patch notes themselves, don’t seem all that big in scale, but it’s a nice shakeup.

Jungle creep camps have been moved about slightly on both sides of the river, which itself has had its bounty rune spot moved. Trees around towers have also been added and pruned, to make for some interesting sightlines, all of which come together to help make the map feel fresh alongside the gameplay changes.

The new hero, Dawnbreaker, is a Melee tank with a big ol’ hammer. She of course has some lore about how she’s  “Molded from the heart of a young metallic star, and charged by golden breath with new life” but what’s obviously more important is how she swings that big hammer about. 

There’s a whole lot of hammer whirling that she can do beyond her basic auto-attack. The Starbreaker ability wheels that fancy hammer around thrice before crashing it down as a damaging stun. 

Dawnbreakers’ other active ability Celestial Hammer tosses that hammer to hit enemies on the way there and then again as she pulls it back to her. This also giving her some nifty movement as she can meet it in the middle. 

Dawnbreaker also has a passive ability Luminosity that can heal on a crit after 3 attacks, but the real fun ability is her ultimate Solar Guardian. This ability lights up an area around a friendly hero in a healing and damaging field, which she slams down onto after a short channel to join the fight in spectacular fashion. 

Being a major update, there’s a huge list of changes in the patch notes, so it’s undoubtedly a good idea to go through them yourself if you’re interested. Beyond the usual hero tweaks, there have been changes to experience gain from outposts, a new rune, and a change to the talents that gives the alternate path from level 27 to 30. 

Having played with these new changes, and against Dawnbreaker more than a few times already, it’s clear to see that they’ve done a good deal to shake up and invigorate the longstanding Dota 2 gameplay.

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