Being good at warding is a skill that often gets overlooked, but if you’ve played enough Dota, you know that vision can make or break a game. Indeed, vision is everything in Dota, and if you can use observer wards to control key areas of the map, everything from laning, farming, to teamfighting just got a whole lot easier. You’ll find the key kills you need, get caught out by surprise ganks less often, and initiate fights on your terms. Let’s take a look at some of our favorite warding spots in 7.06.
Common Warding Mistakes
First, we need to go over some of the most common warding mistakes, many of which you’ll see in almost every low-tier pub game.
- It doesn’t matter where you’re putting your wards if you’re doing it in plain sight. This is an easy way to waste time and resources. Showing up in mid at 2:00 and placing a ward on the enemy’s high ground while their tower (or the opponent’s mid) has vision on you is an easy way to make sure it gets removed almost immediately.
- Running across the river to place deep wards in the other team’s jungle is often a suicide mission. You can use a Smoke of Deceit to make this a bit safer, or pay careful attention to the map and which heroes are missing to time it right.
- Avoid putting wards on the conveniently marked “eye” spots around the map. These ward spots are obvious and easy to deward, so don’t throw wards up at these locations unless you’re expecting to fight around that area soon or you have good reasons to believe that it could go undetected for the next six minutes.
Placing an offlane ward is a great way to make sure that your offlaner avoids feeding kills to the other team’s carry. Plus, they’ll help your offlaner farm creeps safely, ensuring that they’re able to get at least something out of the lane. You’ll generally need to get an offlane ward down fast if you don’t want to be spotted by the other team’s support — consider buying a TP during Strategy Time and placing an offlane ward immediately. The ward above is a great example of a good offlane ward when you’re on Dire. It gives you vision on both pull camps, as well as a way to keep an eye on the movements of the enemy supports, which helps your offlaner avoid ganks.
If you’re on Radiant, this is an example of an offlane ward that gives you similar benefits, in addition to providing vision of the top bounty rune.
Mid Game Wards
There are plenty of great ward spots for the mid game, but the one above is my go-to choice when I’m playing on Dire. It gives you vision of the rune, Roshan, and one of the Radiant Ancient camps. Not only will it not get dewarded by a sentry placed on the “eye” warding spot located directly to the north, but it also blocks the camp, which means that the other team’s supports can’t stack it and neutrals won’t respawn while the observer ward is up. Enemy carries are likely to spend a bit of time farming this Ancient camp, so this ward can often set up a crucial kill on a key enemy hero, which, in turn, will let your team claim Roshan or make a 5 v 4 push to claim objectives.
Since the addition of Shrines in 7.00, offensive Shrine wards have become a huge part of the vision game. Why are they so good? Teams often group at Shrines before smoking or attempting to gank, enemy heroes frequently teleport into Shrines, and these wards also often give vision of Ancient camps.
You need to be careful when placing these wards – walking uphill towards an enemy Shrine is a risky move. It’s also not a terrible idea to place a defensive ward near your own Shrine to ensure that your team can complete their rotations successfully. This is most useful in late-game scenarios when you’ve lost your outer towers, since there’s a higher likelihood that enemies will be lurking near your shrines.