An overview of the International 12 Meta Predictions following the Dota 2 Patch 7.34d.
Valve loves to surprise Dota 2 players and fans, and it did it again just a few days prior to TI 12. Even though fans expected the biggest Dota 2 event of 2023 to be held on the 7.34c patch, Valve released 7.34d. The new update doesn’t include any game-breaking changes, but a lot of heroes got buffed and nerfed, which affected the meta.
Players who compare the top picks and bans at DreamLeague Season 21 will notice all the popular heroes received some changes. For better or worse, most of them got nerfed, which means we’ll be seeing new heroes in action. 7.34d has been out for a few days now, and we can already see some heroes are becoming more popular, so it’s time for The International 12 meta predictions. Keep reading to find out which heroes might become the go-to options for professional players at TI 12.
Supports: Abaddon/Vengeful Spirit/Spirit Breaker
Even though it’s been a while since the Dota 2 community has seen Abaddon, TI 12 might be the place where this will happen. Abaddon is one of the heroes who received small updates yet again. Even though most professional support players do not like him because he’s melee, there’s no arguing he hasn’t looked that good in years.
Abaddon is a specific Dota 2 support hero who doesn’t work in all situations. Usually, teams get him when they need someone to cleanse allies and/or the enemy has high burst damage. Abaddon’s ultimate allows him to survive through everything, and his shield can remove CC effects. Moreover, he can also heal allies. Abaddon did not appear in a single match at DreamLeague Season 21, but since Vengeful Spirit received nerfs yet again, we may see him in action at TI 12.
Speaking of Venge, the hero has been the preferred option for every professional Dota 2 team in the last couple of patches. The major buffs she got a few updates ago made her the most popular hero in the game. That’s why she appeared in over 35 matches at DLS21, the last big event before TI 12.
Even though many professional teams rely on Venge and her amazing skill set, the nerfs in 7.34 d will have an effect on her popularity. As you probably know, Venge’s stun has more cooldown on levels 1-3, and her Wave of Terror has a 5% less damage reduction than before.
Whether these nerfs will be enough to put Vengeful Spirit out of The International 12 meta is questionable. However, some Dota 2 experts predict she may not be as heavily contested as before.
Lastly, Spirit Breaker’s minor buffs were enough to put him back in the meta. His win rate in PUB games has increased drastically, so don’t be surprised if Dota 2 teams use him a lot more at TI 12.
Despite the fact that Enigma hasn’t been big lately and the hero is also not very popular in PUB matches, Dota 2 fans expect to see it in action at The International 12. Enigma is one of those heroes whose ultimate can decide the course of a team fight. What’s funny is the hero doesn’t need to use it, and it will still have an impact because players know it is in the game.
One of the reasons why Enigma could be among the top offlaners for The International 12 is because of the buffs in the Dota 2 Patch 7.34d. The most recent update improved Demonic Summoning by decreasing the Eidolon’s gold bounty, cooldown, and mana cost. Consequently, Enigma can use this ability more frequently and aggressively than before.
Even though a lot of Dota 2 teams who will be at The International 12 may use Enigma as support, the hero can do well in the offlane.
Midlane: Kunkka/Ember Spirit
Prior to the 7.34 d Dota 2 patch, Shadow Fiend was one of the hot midders who appeared in a lot of matches. However, since Spirit Breaker got a buff, most teams will probably try using some of the heroes that can survive against him, such as Kunkka.
A quick look at the DreamLeague Season 21 stats reveals Kunkka was one of the hottest and most successful mid-laners in Dota 2. Considering TI 12 will have players like Lu "Somnus" Yao, there is a good chance Kunkka will dominate the mid-lane.
Speaking of midlane dominations, there hasn’t been a big Dota 2 tournament in the last 7 years where Ember Spirit hasn’t been one of the go-to options. Despite the fact the hero is not so great right now, he’ll most likely be the preferred pick for many teams. After all, every professional Dota 2 club at TI 12 has at least one Ember Spirit player.
Safelane: Luna/Naga Siren
Before the Dota 2 7.34d patch, Phantom Assassin and Sven were two of the best heroes and appeared in most professional and PUB games. Even though they can still work in some situations, the new patch nerfed both. Fortunately, it also buffed a hero who players haven’t seen in action in a long time — Luna.
Currently, Luna is one of the hottest picks in the PUB meta because her win rate increased by more than 3%. The fact she can farm even faster than before and do more damage means she will probably appear more than the rest at The International 12.
Another hero fans expect to see at TI 12 is Naga Siren. The fact that PA and Sven are no longer in the meta is an indirect buff to Naga Siren because she wasn’t performing well against them. Now, the hero has very few counters, so we can expect players to utilize her even more.