Today we will talk about one of the most popular and strongest supports of a current patch - Shadow Demon. This hero has everything you need: he is strong in the lane, has the ability to initiate fights and protect his teammates, and he is insanely useful in all stages of the game.
As always, the steam in-game guide for Shadow Demon is already waiting for you at the following link. Subscribe to it to be able to use the guide in your games.
Table of contents
- Starting Items
- Early-stage of the game(-1:30-12:00)
- Mid-stage of the game(12:00-26:00)
- Late-stage of the game(26:00-99:59+)
- Common mistakes
- Tips & Tricks
Ideally, your starting item build should be Animal Courier, x6 Tangoes, x2 Observer Wards, x2 Enchanted Mangoes, Iron Branch and Clarity. The reason why you should buy so much mana regeneration items is that you really want to be able to use Shadow Poison as often as possible. With the help of this spell, you will be able to easily zone and potentially kill the enemy offlaner or soft support.
Give one Observer Ward to your midlaner and the second one to your soft support. Leave Observer Ward for yourself exclusively if you are going to lane against a hero, who can harm you by using the Fog of War. In most cases, it is not effective for a support to place a ward in the safelane, as it gives very little information.
Make sure to pull x2 Tango to your midlaner. It will allow him to purchase all the necessary items he needs.
Early-stage of the game(-1:30-12:00)
Just like any other hero, game for Shadow Demon starts with a Bounty Runes fight. Unlike many other heroes, Shadow Demon has a huge killing potential in this fight. Select the weakest enemy hero or the hero who is out of position, start stacking Shadow Poison on him. With the help of one disable you can easily make the first blood.
As the laning stage begins, you should think about the power of the enemies in your lane. If the opponents are stronger, you should position yourself behind your carry and carefully play from a safe position. In case your opponents are weak and have no chance of killing you, position yourself on the side of the lane and start actively spamming your opponents with Shadow Poison.
If you carry has no way of securing a last-hit of a ranged creep, try to use Shadow Poison that way, so it would hit both the enemy hero the enemy ranged creep. Always try to secure a last-hit of a ranged creep, as it gives a lot more gold and experience than a melee creep. If you allow your opponents to deny the ranged creep and do not do it yourself, it means enemy heroes will get level 2 a lot sooner.
Always use opportunities to stack neutral creeps. You can do it very easily with the help of Shadow Poison. Even if your cores do not have a way to clear stacks, you can always do it by yourself.
Stacking is especially effective if you play for the Dire, as you do not have to walk far away to make stacks. Doesn’t it sound good? Well, it gets better. Thanks to Shadow Poison, you can easily stack not one, not two but three camps at once without any real effort.
This is how your jungle can look only after 4th minute of the game. To stack these three camps at once, you need to use Shadow Poison on the camp nearest to the middle lane at X:43, then hit a big jungle camp(on the right of the Shrine) at x:53 and use Shadow Poison on the medium camp(on the left of the Shrine) at X:55. Bam. You have stacked three camps without any effort. Now your midlaner will be as happy as ever.
After the nighttime begins, it is very important to place new Observer Wards. It is essential to have a good vision during the first nighttime, as it is the best time in the game to make rotations. Always aim to place the ward in the midlane, as it will protect your midlaner and help him to make kills.
Use Smokes to set-up kills. Try to get kills near enemy towers, it will help your team destroy them after a successful kill.
Mid-stage of the game(12:00-26:00)
As this stage begins, you should start focusing your attention on playing around key objectives of the game. Whenever siege creep is about to appear, encourage your teammates to use Smoke of Deceit to force a fight around the enemy tower.
Pay attention to your positioning. Shadow Demon is a powerful defensive support, his job is to save his teammates or potentially initiate fights.
Keep in mind, that Shadow Demon has a decent farming potential thanks to Shadow Poison. Stack neutral camps for yourself and farm them with the help of this spell. You can also use this spell to split push lanes effectively.
Try to provide good vision for your teammates. As you might notice, we recommend buying Quelling Blade on this hero. Having this item will allow you to deward a lot faster.
Quelling Blade can also help you select better positioning in fights. Whenever you fight in the jungle or near towers, you can use this item to cut trees and select an unexpected position.
Late-stage of the game(26:00-99:59+)
In the late stage, you will have to use all your individual skill to its maximum potential. Be quick with using your spells and items, keep an exceptional positioning in fights.
Encourage your teammates to keep two out of three lanes pushed, it will help you to get additional map control.
Use Smokes to get single kills. With the help of Soul Catcher, Shadow Demon can help his team burst down any enemy hero without problems. Keep playing around key objectives of the game, such as Towers, Roshan and Bounty Runes. Pay close attention to the game timer. The easiest way to force a teamfight is to initiate it at the Bounty Runes respawn time.
Positioning, positioning and once again, positioning. Is your team sieging the enemy base? Stay behind your teammates and be ready to save them. Is your team killing Roshan? Never enter a Roshan pit, keep the range, try not to get into AoE enemy disables.
- Learning Disruption at level 1. It is very important for you to have a Shadow Poison when you come to the lane. Poison will help you apply a lot of pressure on enemy heroes and secure free farm for your carry.
- Position yourself poorly in fights. Shadow Demon is one of the strongest defensive supports in the game. You need to make sure to position yourself properly to be able to use Disruption effectively.
- Staying in the safelane for too long. Movement is a key to win games as a support. Try to move around the map effectively and apply pressure on the vulnerable enemy cores during the early stage of the game.
Tips & Tricks
Improve your skill through watching streams, videos or replays of professional players, who pick this hero.
Keep good communication with your teammates, as you need their help to make kills.
Use Fog of War to your advantage. Get yourself a Quelling Blade, so you can select a better position while hiding behind the trees.
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