Lost and Not Found - Items Removed from Dota 2

Alisa Barladyan
09 Jun 2022

Game developers promised to release patch 7.31d by June 8. The community always expects some new mechanics, changes in the heroes' abilities, and changes in the map landscape. But some things disappear from the game forever after the patches. Today we offer you to remember the items that existed in the game but disappeared from the current version.

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Dota 2
Ring of Tarrasque

The "ring of health" first appeared in patch 7.20. It was a part of an expensive item, Heart of Tarrasque. It gave +150 health and +3.75 health regeneration and cost 700 coins when it was released.

The item appeared in the patch following 7.19, in which the roamers ceased to exist, and the hard lane became a proper lane with a third core, whose job was to put as much pressure on the carries as possible. That's why there were two types of position 1 in the meta back then - heroes going into the woods at levels 4-5 and characters capable of taking maximum out of the lane, surviving all the damage from the offlaner.

And yet the players didn't notice the "ring" right away. The item was buffed in patch 7. 25b by increasing health recovery to 4.5, and the cost was reduced to 600 coins. The item quickly became relevant for position 1 and 2 heroes in the laning phase. Advantages include extra health and increased hp regen, allowing early exchange and damage tolerance. The most important factor in the popularity of the item was its cost. Now the hero could buy the Ring of Tarrasque immediately and safely stand on the lane until the original items drop instead of buying expendables and stats.

Before patch 7.28 was released, the item was in almost every game - the players liked to buy it for Anti-Mage, Spectre, and Bristleback, as well as for Axe, Centaur Warrunner, and Timbersaw. Carry could later leave the lane and not waste extra gold on expendables, and the offlaner had an item that was useful during the laning and mid-game phases. And it was in patch 7.28, that the developers decided to remove this item.

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Poor Man's Shield

This is one of the two items with a unique history in the game. The Shield was added to the game as an item for purchase. Then it was deleted for its incredible popularity. After a while, it returned to the game as a neutral item, but even then, it was so IMBA that it was once again banished from the Dota 2 world. Why was the item so popular that the developers had to remove it twice?

Poor Man's Shield was assembled from Stout Shield (a regular shield, removed from the game due to changes in the block mechanics of heroes) for 200 coins and two Slippers of Agility for 150 coins. It gave a 50% damage block from creeps and +6 to the "agility" attribute. For only 500 coins, Anti-Mage would get +6 to damage, +2 armor, and not get damaged from creeps. This allowed for riskier exchanges while having the advantage in defense and extra attributes for agility heroes. Poor Man's Shield also lets you farm forest camps with neutral creeps faster.

Agility is often the first attribute for position 1 heroes: it determines the armor and attack speed of the hero (previously, agility also improved the speed of movement). Therefore, the shield allowed position 1 heroes to deal damage to the enemy faster and reduce their damage. At the laning phase and early midgame, the item was very relevant and allowed to farm items with greater speed.

It was removed in patch 7.07 but was reincarnated in patch 7.23 when neutrals were introduced. Poor Man's Shield was now dropped more or less randomly, but all farming lovers were happy to put their hands on it. It was placed in the list of tier-1 neutral items and had a big impact from the early levels. The developers potentially could have moved it to tier-2 or fix it, but in patch 7.28, they decided to remove the item from the game again.

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Iron Talon

This item repeated the history of Poor Man's Shield. The developers first created it in patch 6.86, and found great popularity in the builds of position 1 heroes, then it was removed. In patch 7.23, it returned to the game as a neutral item, but in 7.28, its second life was over.

Iron Talon allowed the carry who lost its lane to make a comeback within minutes. The item was assembled from an ax and a recipe and allowed to take 40% of the current health from neutral creeps (including ancients) when activated. Even a bug with the item allowed it to take health from Roshan.

How did it work in the game? A carry would buy the item at the laning phase before moving to the forest and use it to eat the health of the largest neutral creep in the camp, saving time on a single creep camp. Taking into account the cooldown time of the active ability (20 seconds), the hero could activate Iron Talon three times a minute and farm a lot of neutral creeps. There's a nice bonus of activating it on ancient neutral creeps. Most position 1 heroes farmed ancients as soon as they leveled up and received their first items on the 10th minute of the game. When Iron Talon was added, the carry could shift to position 3 earlier and take out more farm than from a small forest.

After restoring the item as a neutral, the item has tried to balance it out a bit. The devs increased reload time and reduced damage bonuses on creeps. However, in patch 7.28, it was finally removed along with the shield.

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The removal of the Necronomicon can safely be called the most painful change of patch 7.29. Many heroes had it in their inventory right before the item disappeared from the game. We're talking about Lycan, Beastmaster, and Enigma, and in patch 7.28, there was a mod from Necronomicon for Tusk. Supports often collected the item in the late game.

The item was assembled from nice artifacts for mana regen, strength, and a recipe—the "book" allowed to summon a warrior and archer with good damage and appealing abilities. The item could be upgraded for three levels - and the abilities of the summoned creatures increased accordingly. Let's break down each creature separately.

Warrior could burn mana with each attack (30/40/50 depending on Necronomicon's level), and when he was killed, the hero who dealt the killing blow to the warrior took magic damage of 600/700/800. At the third level of the "book", the unit received True Sight (revealing invisibility). Warrior had 700/800/900 health and 50/70/85 damage.

The archer also had 700/800/900 health and 40/60/80 damage. At the third level, Necronomicon got the Purge ability (dispelling positive hero effects) and also had a passive ability to increase the movement speed of nearby heroes and units.

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Thus, we get two units with serious damage and the ability to destroy enemies alone. And combined with nice auras, the units could cause a huge impact in the game and allow you to finish the map faster. With this item, Lycan and Beastmaster started capturing the opponent's base 15-20 minutes into the game. Tusk with Necronomicon could destroy the map immediately after the laning phase. The opposing team's supports couldn't place vision because with the last level of the "book," all the wards were easy to find and remove. And if the game didn't go according to plan, you can use the Necronomicon to split lanes and create space on the map.

The removal of the item was preceded by patch 7.28, in which the cost and recharge of the item were reduced. The item became popular for many heroes, and winning the game against Necronomicon became an incredibly difficult task. Heroes with summoned units farmed quickly could quickly demolish towers, control Roshan, and finish the game early. Heroes who used this item had a win rate above 55%. The developers could have fixed Necronomicon's unit bonuses, but they decided to remove the item from the game altogether.

We have already seen the game without Necronomicon in patch 7.31c, but by the time patch 7.29 was released, removing the "book" from the game was considered a real catastrophe. The heroes that collected the item dropped out of meta for a short time and were no longer used on the professional scene. To bring back the pick rate of the heroes, it was necessary to significantly increase their abilities and drop the most popular items more often. Supports had to remember Sentry Ward and Gem more often to get rid of the enemy's vision. And the world of Dota lost another item that could help us see half of the heroes from another, unexpected side.

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