We have been waiting for Mars since his release was teased alongside Grimstroke in The International 2018. Typically, Valve delayed the release until the most recent ranked season. Many speculated, based on the teaser, that Mars would be a melee hero based on the Roman mythological god of war. Beyond that, it was all speculation, until now. We finally have Mars available in the Dota 2 hero pool! Its time to overload your Frontier packages with endless hours of playing and mastering Dota’s latest hero. Here’s all you need to know about Mars.
Mars: The God of War
Dota 2 lore describes Mars as a son of heaven with an inclination for battles and bloodlust. Now he fights for a higher purpose than mindless war. He fights to topple the gods and build his own empire over their ashes. It is a pretty standard variation of Roman mythological themes. We already have other heroes based on myths and legends like Medusa, Monkey King, Doom, and of course Zeus. Mars looks pretty much like you’d expect a god of war to look. A quirky thing to note is that the weapons he carries are more Greek than Roman. But enough superficial discussions. Let’s get to the meat of the matter. Here’s all the information you need before you start playing with Mars:
- Recommended Items
Let’s just dive into the good stuff right away.
Mars comes equipped with 4 spells or abilities, 1 of which is passive. The interesting thing to note is that these spells let Mars initiate team fights, disable opponents, and even carry the game with the right items. But we will come to the items in due course. First, let us take a look at the abilities that make Mars such a formidable and dominant hero.
Spear of Mars
Spear of Mars is a point target ability that is quite useful when you’re looking to disable or create space. Mars hurls a spear at the targeted point that damages each enemy unit it hits. It also knocks back the first enemy hero it strikes. If this hero hits a tree, building or cliff when knocked back, the spear stuns and impales the hero. The spear causes maximum damage of 325 at level 4 and 525 with a talent upgrade.
Mars’ second ability, God’s Rebuke, is another point of target ability. Mars smashes enemies in front of him with his shield, causing damage and knocking them back. God’s Rebuke also applies a critical strike based on Mars’ attack damage. The ability also adds bonus damage when targeting enemy heroes. God’s Rebuke has a true strike, which means it pierces evasion abilities and items. The critical strike damage is a staggering 280% at level 4. It goes all the way up to 360% if you choose the right talent. Additionally, it adds a bonus hero to attack damage of 25.
Blocking physical attacks is a useful ability, as anyone who has played Bristleback will tell you. Mars’ Bulwark works in a similar way but with a twist. Mars passively blocks damage with his shield from the front and sides. He can block up to 70% of attacks from the front and 35% from the side. This includes blocking magical and pure attack damage but not spells. When tanking or initiating team fights, Bulwark can help you stand your ground and deal with multiple heroes.
Arena of Blood
Arena of Blood is Mars’ ultimate ability and it certainly packs a punch. After a short delay, an arena appears that blocks enemy movement and attacks. If an enemy hero approaches the inside edge of the arena, they get knocked back with damage. The arena radius is 550 while the maximum knockback damage is 250. If you pick the right talent, you also get +100 ally hp regen.
Like any other hero, you can choose from between two distinct talents at levels 10, 15, 20, and 25. At level 10, you get the choice between +20 movement speed or +8 strength. Choosing strength grants Mars 160 health, 8 attack damage, 0.64% magic resistance, and 0.8 health regen. At level 15, you can choose between +8 armor or +35 damage. Armor does not benefit any of Mars’ illusions. The level 20 talent offers you a choice between +1.5 second Spear of Mars stun duration or +200 spear damage. At level 25, you get to choose either +80% to God’s Rebuke critical strike or +100 ally HP regen in Arena.
Mars is durable, a disabler, a carry, and an initiator. So its usually a good idea to make a build that complements these roles. Starting the game with tango, healing salve, enchanted mango, and stout shield is a good option. You need to get boots of speed, a magic stick and a soul ring in the early game. This will help solve many problems to let you attack and harass more.
By mid-game, you need to upgrade your boots to phase boots and the stick to a magic wand. You also need to rush dagger and Vladimir’s offering. A desolator can help de-buff enemies when used with your second ability. Your late game items are a pipe of insight, radiance and a black king bar, along with an assault cuirass. You can make blade mail, Mjollnir and force staff as well depending on your situation.
Dota 2 is an online game which means you need a decent internet connection for the best gameplay. You need to pay special attention to the latency you get with your current connection. 100Mbps of Frontier internet speed doesn’t matter if your latency is too high. Be sure to check your connection before you start a pub or ranked game. This concludes our review of Dota 2’s latest hero, The God of War. Share your own thoughts on the new hero with us in the comments below.