If you are about to start playing DotA 2 (or you started recently) but have certain doubts or failures, we recommend you reading this guide. Here you can find out how to play DotA 2 as a newbie: how to pick a hero, what to buy when the game starts, etc.

Newbie Tips DotA 2
Newbie Tips DotA 2

We would like to warn you in advance: there will be many definitions which you might not understand first. There is no reason to be afraid of new words or to try learning them by heart. We used these words for you to be able to come back to this guide after you find out what those unfamiliar words mean.

How to Play DotA 2 as a Newbie? Start with Introductory!

Introductory missions are in almost every game nowadays. We think DotA 2 to be quite a complicated game, so it is better for you to accept the proposal of passing the intro training before starting any real game. Even if you played MOBA games before, there is a probability for you to explore some unique DotA 2 mechanics from it.

If you are a total newbie in MOBA, we recommend you making a pause in reading this article and passing the introductory practice. This will let you understand information from this guide better.

How to Choose a Hero?

DotA 2 Heroes
DotA 2 Heroes

How to begin playing DotA 2? First, you should choose a hero (or some of them) and learn how to play as them only. You’ll obligatory expand your hero pool, but it is better not to do that while you are an absolute beginner.

Currently, there are 116 heroes in a game. Of course, we won’t discuss all of them. To choose a hero, you can use in-game filters and find the character suiting you the most.


First, you should choose the “Heroes” button in the upper zone of a main menu. Click the “difficulty” segment at once. This is how you put away 50% of heroes which are too complicated for beginners to once.

You might notice the indicator located under this filter. The more painted it is, the better the hero suits to a certain category. For instance, by choosing “support” and strengthening the filter to maximum indicator, you’ll see only heroes with best supporting abilities. This option is better to use it for putting away the excessive number of heroes. Of course, the difficulty is better to be the lowest as you are the DotA 2 beginner.

Carry and Support Characters

To the left from “difficulty” there are 2 more filters: “Farm” and “Support”. The choice between these two ways will be your first decision.

By choosing the first one, you’ll get “Carry”, or so-called “core heroes”. Their task is to farm as much gold and experience as they can by killing enemy characters and creeps.

“Support” heroes, as you might understand from the title, are to support core heroes. They can either heal and buff allies or weaken and stun enemies. Additionally, one of support hero players has to buy a courier after the game starts, and to place wards during the game to provide their team with map vision.

Ranged or Melee Combat

To the right of “Difficulty”, there are ranged and melee combat filters. We bet everything is clear here. Beginners usually prefer ranged characters because playing for them is slightly easier. Still, we recommend you not to concentrate on this feature too much. Melee heroes are good, too. And they can deal with ranged characters perfectly.

Now, let’s proceed to the lower menu filters


This option filters heroes according to their damage dealing speed. As for our mind, this filter is not too important. Still, if you have any preferences about that, use it.


This filter will show you characters having strong stuns, aggro skills, etc. Such heroes fit players who like preventing their enemies from playing their game by breaking lots of plans.


The option shows heroes able to farm neutral creeps in jungle since the very beginning of the game.


Heroes under this filter usually have much armor or strong magic resistance parameters. Additionally, they always have any skill helping them live in a fight for long. The choice is for those who like playing and feeling as a tank.


Use this filter if you like playing heroes able to run away from the battlefield quickly.


On the way to the enemy’s ancient, you have to destroy opponent’s towers. Of course, any hero or even creeps can do that. But characters of the “pusher” filter can destroy towers especially quickly and easily.


We think this is quite a difficult playstyle for beginners. Heroes from here are great to stop dull spell throwing and to start a real bloody massacre. If you feel the fight well and know when it is worth beginning the fight and leading your team into it, use this filter.

Choosing the Lane

DotA 2 Lanes
DotA 2 Lanes

There are 3 lanes in DotA 2: mid lane, hard lane, and easy lane. The lane choice is one of the most important game decisions. Players usually discuss their positions when picking heroes. You’ll have to make this choice too, so here are some features of each lane described.

Mid Lane

On this lane, you mainly rely on your own skills and decisions. Here you won’t have a reliable support to protect you from enemies, but your opponent does not have this assistance as well. Sometimes, players visit this lane to kill the enemy midlaner. Still, mid plays mean 1 on 1 duels for 90% of time.

Easy Lane

It is at the bottom of the map (bot) when playing as Radiant and at the top (top) of the map when playing as Dire. Usually, this lane is for one carry hero (a character dealing most damage till the game ends) and one support. The task of a carry hero is to get maximum gold and experience for killing enemy creeps and heroes. Supports can protect their carry and make camp stacks as well (camp stacking is a topic for a complete separate guide). In addition, this support player is usually responsible for warding, courier and dust purchase throughout the game.

Hard Lane (or Offlane)

Here are the hardliner and the second support. The task of a hardliner is to prevent the enemy carry from farming as hard as they can while farming themselves if possible. So, the hardliner stands like in the middle between the carry and the support. Still, sometimes hardliners can turn into complete carry characters. The second support has to put all efforts on denying the enemy carry’s farm as well. If needed, this support makes teleport raids to different map points.

Choosing a Hero’s Guide

Now, whet your character and lane are chosen, come back to the hero you are going to play. Before you start playing, choose the guide created by more experienced players obligatory. It will help you with the starting purchase, the order of skill and talent improvement. We recommend avoiding using standard Valve guides: they are severely outdated and need refreshment. Bu the way, you can choose the guide in the middle of the game, too. But this usually takes some time, so it is better to prepare in advance.

It is not worth to start playing against human opponents or going in for different game modes. Your first 50-100 games should be played with humans against bots in the All Pick mode. Remember, leaving the game against real humans will cause matchmaking penalties.

If you will possibly have to leave the game, create a custom game with bots. Learn abilities of different heroes playing for and against you gradually. After feeling that you recognize most characters playing in both teams, you can start playing against human opponents.


DotA 2 is a co-op game. The better players cooperate with each other, the stronger their team becomes. Additionally, the game has to bring satisfaction, and it is easier to get while playing with friends.

It is worth noting that skill levels of your friends should be nearly equal to yours. So, it is the best way to gather a group of friends and to start playing DotA 2 together. You can even create your team here!

But even if you don’t have friends playing DotA, you can always add players to your Steam friend list.

To Conclude

This was your first guide about how to begin playing DotA 2. As you probably understood, there are many things you’ll have to master on your way to the top of DotA 2 ladders. That is why you should visit our website more frequently to find new guides!

Have a good luck and much fun while playing DotA 2!

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