Techies: A New Era
Here’s how my first game of Techies went. My friend auto locks Techies, our teammate auto locks Tiny. Techies buys TP, starts channeling to top lane, then Tiny tosses him in the fountain and interrupts it. He team chats, “Techies picker wasting our time, so now I’ll waste all of our time.” Never mind that logic, Tiny then follows our Techies player the rest of the game and tosses him into the enemy. Have pubs changed forever?
After two years of anticipation and expectation, it all sort of feels underwhelming. In the days approaching the release, we feverishly mined for impending Dota updates, hopelessly wishing for Techies. Instead, we got more hats— literally nothing. In an attempt to prevent another Diretide debacle, Valve made an announcement of an announcement: Techies will be here shortly.
The community predicted that Techies would be the death of pubs. Now that we’ve had a little more than a week with Techies, what has happened?
data for this past week
As with most new heroes, they skyrocket in popularity upon their release, but I have a feeling that Techies will remain near the top, alongside his friends Pudge and Sniper. The hero itself sparks the same kind of groans among teammates. He’s either terrible or he’s a god.
In the first few days, Techies bottomed our win rate charts at near 35%, but his win rate has risen steadily since then, stabilizing around 43%. Techies now joins Pudge as the most popular and losing heroes. No other heroes have lost more games than Pudge and Techies—even Earth Spirit and IO who own a <38% win rate but are nearly 1/10th less popular.
Overall, with a 43% win rate, Techies still ranks near the bottom tier of pub heroes, along the likes of heroes such as Visage, Storm Spirit, and Chen.
By far the most popular ability builds maxes mines and suicide first, at a 40% build rate. One other successful variation also maxes suicide second, with the only change being lvl 2 Suicide at lvl 3. (Keep in mind these win rates are relative to Techies at lvl 18+)
Despite how strong stasis trap can be, Techies doesn’t have the mana pool to sustain it in the early game. It’s no surprise that an early suicide build can prove to be more successful. Much of his utility depends on opponents making positional mistakes, which can be few and far between when lanes are fairly static in the early game. Early suicide, with an assist from a teammate, can net some crucial kills in a stage when Techies is looking to make an impact.
Even though since his release, Techies has shaken off his status as the lowest win rate hero, his game impact still remains the same. Take a look at the bottom of the charts:
His KDA rests significantly below both IO and Chen--some of the least played, ineffective heroes in pubs.
There seems to be a common late game trend in my Techies games, where we completely fail the early and mid game, turtle with Techies, and eventually our hard carry gets enough farm. It seems that with a Techies on your team, you’re essentially making that sacrifice. His impact is hidden in his late game turtling, but perhaps you’re in that position because, well, you have Techies.
There hasn’t been another hero release that has changed the fabric of pubs as Techies has. Pudge is the other hero that provokes us into 100% constant map awareness. We’re constantly pinging Pudge is missing, and now we’re doing the same with Techies. We cringe in the same way when there's a Techies picked in the game. Even if Techies loses 60% of his games, it's quite refreshing to have a little change in the dynamic of our pubs, perhaps for the better.