A Hero’s Spell-Stealing Ability Wrecked Team Secret’s Night In DOTA 2

A Hero’s Spell-Stealing Ability Wrecked Team Secret’s Night In DOTA 2

Team Secret’s new DOTA 2 super-roster is off to an iffy start at ESL One Manila. Some lack of coordination has put them on the verge of elimination early following losses in their group. They were fighting for their lives against Empire. Secret were up a game and were looking for the knockout victory when this happened. Secret were pushing down mid when their own Black Hole spell was used against them by Empire’s Rubick, who immediately turned the game on its head.

And then, almost 50 minutes later, Empire won what had turned into the longest game of the tournament by doing the exact same thing.

Meanwhile, Team Liquid and Fnatic looked the sharpest of any teams in the group stage, with Liquid continuing to build on their performance at the Shanghai Major. It’s worth noting that Liquid and Fnatic were also two of the more stable teams at this tournament, with lineups that have played together consistently for several months.

However, China’s Wings Gaming team edged past CompLexity to advance to the playoff bracket, and then brought down Fnatic in the semifinal. While Liquid defeated Empire for a spot in the final, they were defeated by Wings Gaming in a 3-0 victory, Wings Gaming securing their place as the ESL One Manila champions.

Top image: Secret’s PieDieLie at ESL One New York, by Robert Paul for ESL. Source


  • Nothing makes me happier than watching the latest team Arteezy swaps into looking for big $$$ crash and burn. Professional dota players often have no allegiance and swap teams whenever they feel like it looking for an ‘unbeatable’ line-up, yet most fans prefer seeing stable teams like Fnatic (and even the new Empire) working from the ground up to defeat these pompous teams.

    • I believe Wings and Liquid have the most stable rosters of anyone at the tournament.

      Regardless, I’m so glad that Wings won. Those non-meta picks really threw Liquid off, and Wings played to perfection.

      • It is interesting seeing Wings finally make a name for themselves. Underdog stories are always great!

    • You honestly just sound like you hate rTz probably because of something you read on reddit or that you were upset he left EG. Have you heard of teams like Alliance? (exact same Alliance roster as what? 5 years ago Lol) Na’Vi even held the same roster ( at the least 3 of them stayed within Na’Vi for years) for quite a while. ‘Players have no allegiance’ lol are you new? Empire themselves have brought in and pushed out a few players recently… Fnatics latest sub and player change was last month.. also Fnatics performance is average at best only being able to place first in smaller tournaments. Players move around a lot so that they don’t get stale, new captains, new scenery, keeping it all fresh. While teams like Na’Vi, Alliance and Fnatic are always on a downslope (spoiler, Alliance is not back ;-;). Wonder why? Probably because they get used to playing the game the one way in their comfortable line up. Players in dota move around to become better players stop being a dramatic highschooler.

      • Nah i just like fnatic – I’ve been a fan of Mushi and Ohaiyo for quite a while (and believe it or not they both still play in the same team!) And they don’t just always play the same – fnatic adjusts constantly and always manages to be interesting in their picks (and you can’t deny that they are a pretty top team as well).

        … yeah Empire changes a lot but they often go for lesser known players. I’m just really not a fan of some of the big players – RTZ, Sumail etc. I’ve seen their twitter posts etc. and they come off as quite arrogant and are often condescending and badmouth others.

        Though, Secret’s players change even faster than the coherency of your argument, and that’s an undeniable fact. You can like them if you want, but I’d rather see an actual team win, not just a mish-mash of top players. Also mate, I’m way over being a dramatic highschooler – now I’m just a heavily opinionated uni student

  • Is it too much to ask for explanations so people can understand the article/video that dont play Dota? The LoL articles atleast explain the champion, spells and anything else that may confuse someone unfamiliar with the game.

    I have absolutely no idea what happened in that clip, let alone a person that doesnt touch mobas.

    • So the video starts with Team Empire moving three heroes through the enemy jungle towards Team Secret, who are grouped in the mid lane (you can see Secret all grouped up at 0:30)

      The first Empire hero to go in is Nyx Assassin – his ultimate ability lets him go invisible and deals a heap of damage when you attack out of the invisibility. However, Secret has placed down a sentry ward, which lets them see invisible units in an area. They see Nyx coming up, and Enigma (the floating blue dude) hits him with an ability that stuns him periodicially over a set time. They all run in to kill Nyx, thinking that he is there by himself trying to scout them out.

      So Rubick (the wizard looking guy with the green staff) on the Empire team (you can see him in the jungle early in the video) – his ultimate ability is that he can steal whatever spell was last casted by the targeted enemy hero. In this case, he has stolen the ultimate ability from Enigma, which is Black Hole – you cast it on a certain area, and all enemies in that area get sucked towards the middle of the area and take damage. Rubick also has a blink dagger, which lets him blink forward over a short distance. One of the other Empire heroes is Dark Seer – he has an ability called Vacuum, which sucks all enemy heroes in a certain AOE into the center of that area. Dark Seer’s ultimate creates a wall, and any enemy that walks over it creates an illusion that starts attacking them for significant damage. It’s basically Dark Seer’s signature combo (called the VacWall); You can see him using it at 0:37.

      Once Secret run in to kill Nyx, Dark Seer hits them with the VacWall. That in itself isn’t enough to kill their whole team – however, Rubick then blinks in and casts Black Hole to follow it up. This locks them in place for a few seconds, with the illusions combined with all the Empire heroes beating them down. Nyx, the initial target, also has an AOE stun, which easily hits all of Secret’s clustered heroes. This was enough to kill 3 of Secret’s 4 heroes, with the 4th hero easy pickings once the combo has finished.

      • Good rundown.
        Rubrick had black hole at the start of that video. Did Secret know he had stolen it 70 secs earlier?
        They should have been more careful knowing he had black hole ready to use.
        Also enigma should use a different spell asap after black hole to prevent stealing.
        Ofc this is all in theory.. these guys are much better than me lol

        • Black Hole is actually one of the easier spells for Rubick to steal, particularly among the big Ulti’s. Because it’s channeling, if Enigma doesn’t catch Rubick in the AOE when he casts, it’s almost impossible to stop Rubick from blinking in and stealing it while you’re in the middle of channeling it, before you have a chance to protect it with another spell.

          Plus, Rubick’s dropped out of the meta a bit, so I think people aren’t as used to protecting their spells as they were when he was more of a tier-1 support pick.

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