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18 Votes

Bristleback's Facepalm build

June 19, 2012 by Shaele
Comments: 12    |    Views: 63520    |   


DotA2 Hero: Bristleback

Hero Skills

Viscous Nasal Goo

1 12 13 14

Quill Spray

2 3 5 7


4 8 9 10


6 11 16


15 17 18

Bristleback's Facepalm build

June 19, 2012

Pro's and Con's


*Very good chaser
*Very strong 1v1 hero, especially against melee
*Few "natural" counters as the game goes on
*Strong AoE presence from mid game on
*Solid starting damage
*Highest Intelligence growth of any Strength hero
*Strong survivability...when back is turned
*Blows snots on people


*Melee hero
*Starting stats are fairly average across the board
*No disable
*Only real escape mechanism is running
*Strongly countered in lane by the simplest of items
*Slow base movement speed
*Low Strength growth for a Strength hero
*Hit Points are low, especially for a Strength hero


Viscous Nasal Goo

Covers a target in snot, causing it to have reduced armor and movement speed. Casts on the same target are cumulative.

Ability Type: Active
Targeting Type: Unit
Mana Cost: 30
Cooldown: 1.5 sec
Duration: 5 sec
Casting Range: 600

Level Effect
1 -1 armor, 20% and +3% slow a cast
2 -1 armor, 20% and +6% slow a cast
3 -2 armor, 20% and +9% slow a cast
4 -2 armor, 20% and +12% slow a cast


Stacks up to 4 times.

Mmm, boogers. This spell is the primary reason why Bristleback is such a good chaser. However, it's worth noting that this skill also eats armor, which enables your Quill Sprays to do a bit more damage. You can also use this to dispel effects like Healing Salve. Once your mana pool can support this, use this over and over again to slow down would-be runners. This is also your primary weapon for the "Piggy Dance" (which I will cover later). Also reasonably effective against Roshan.

Quill Spray

Sprays enemy units with quills dealing damage in a 625 AoE. Deals 30 extra damage for every time the unit was struck by a quill in the last 10 seconds.

Ability Type: Active
Targeting Type: Instant
Mana Cost: 35
Cooldown: 3 sec
Duration: 10 sec
Area of Effect: 625

Level Effect
1 20 direct damage, 30 stacking damage
2 40 direct damage, 30 stacking damage
3 60 direct damage, 30 stacking damage
4 80 direct damage, 30 stacking damage


Damage type is physical.
Cap is 180 damage.

This is your nuke, such as it is. The fact that the damage is physical means that while it can hit magic immune units (such as Golems), the damage is naturally reduced by armor. Fortunately, blowing snots on enemies reduces their armor, increasing the damage from your quills somewhat. It's also extremely important to note that the damage from this spell is dealt instantly. In other words, the animation that accompanies the spell, while mildly interesting, is entirely irrelevant. Especially once you're out of the laning phase, you should be spamming this more or less all the time when enemies are around. In lane, use it to last hit, especially in tough lanes. If you can kill creeps and hit enemy heroes with it at the same time, so much the better.


Rigwarl covers his back in spines, causing him to take reduced damage. Automatically releases a quill spray whenever his rear receives 250 damage.

Ability Type: Passive
Targeting Type: N/A

Level Effect
1 10% reduced from rear, 5% from sides
2 20% reduced from rear, 10% from sides
3 30% reduced from rear, 15% from sides
4 40% reduced from rear, 20% from sides


Bristleback's rear is considered to be within 70 degrees from the back.
Bristleback's side is considered to be within 110 degrees from the back.

Bristleback's namesake and, ironically enough, the source of misinformation as it pertains to his role on a team. His other skills set this skill up, not the other way around. This primarily comes into play when you're escaping after successfully chasing another hero and gunning him down. You then enjoy reduced damage as you run your *** out of there. It's important to keep in mind that the damage reduction comes in the form of triggered healing. What this means is that at full health, you can't be healed, and the skill can't "reduce" the damage. In other words, you'll take all of it. This skill also doesn't reduce damage dealt by towers, so be very careful if you tower dive!


Everytime Rigwarl casts a spell, he works himself into a fury. Movement speed and damage increase on repeated spell casts.

Ability Type: Passive
Targeting Type: N/A
Duration: 10 sec

Level Effect
1 10 damage/5% MS Base + 10 damage/1% MS Stack
2 20 damage/7% MS Base + 15 damage/2% MS Stack
3 30 damage/10% MS Base + 20 damage/3% MS Stack


Stacks up to 5 times.
Illusions will benefit from the original's casts.
Using items does not trigger Warpath.

This skill is what enables Bristleback to go full ******. At level 16, you're talking over 100 bonus damage and a huge 25% bonus to move speed. That is, in a word, awesome. This skill enables you to stay mobile in a battle, running around while spraying quills and blowing snots all over everything. The damage bonus is there to make sure the few physical attacks you will get in while you're spamming spells will hurt as much as possible. Don't forget to spam spells while you're sitting at your fountain waiting to heal: while 10 seconds isn't an especially long duration, it can help get you back to wherever you wanted to go faster than you otherwise could.


Bristleback's skill build is pretty simple and straight forward. As a carry, it is generally more advisable to give up the early game in favor of attaining dominance a little further down the road, but if you're playing with a team you know well, feel free to take a level of Viscous Nasal Goo early to see if you can snag yourself some early kills. Otherwise, the name of the game is to stay alive and use Quill Spray to last hit as many creeps as possible while keeping you as safe as a melee hero can be.

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