Guide to the Juggernaut
The Juggernaut is a melee here with dexterity as the main attribute (34 + 2,8). He is one of the most popular heroes – the 3rd from the top, according to DotaBuff. Usually played in the Carry role for his ability to effectively destroy enemies one-on-one with the Omnislash ability, if there no other enemies to absorb the damage nearby, he also can bring Healing Ward to bear. This power can help his team restore health when smashing towers, in team fights or when slaying Roshan. When Blade Fury is used, he becomes immune to magic, which lets him break out of fights and avoid dangerous situations. Depending on his gear, he can be a Carry, an Escape or a Pusher.
The Juggernaut has limited mana and his spells cost quite a bit to cast, so at low levels he is rather dependent on his equipment. His strength and intelligence grow slowly, and his starting strength and health make him somewhat vulnerable to early ganking. The player needs to stay alert and keep an eye out for enemy characters. In late game the hero also needs powerful items to reach his potential, but he is still far inferior to Hard Carry types and performs poorly when facing several opponents at once.
The Juggernaut’s main advantage is his melee aptitude, he does good damage to solitary enemies. Blade Fury lets him slip out of skirmishes going against him without fear of enemy stuns. His dexterity improves very briskly and his attacks are fast, which allows him to farm for the starting items he needs quickly and effectively and exert a strong influence in midgame. His player can be flexible about choice of strategy and item build, thus, he can be made useful in a variety of roles and make a difference at any point in the match.
The Juggernaut’s skill build always needs to aim for aggressive lane play. He needs to choose a strategy from the first minutes in the game and focus either on creep farming or on solo target damage. Either way, the Jugggernaut usually goes to an easy lane with support, so he should pump up Blade Fury and Blade Dance. This skill combo will net him many a kill early on, especially when there is a supporting hero with a strong magic procast or stunning abilities. Healing Ward is only needed to avoid leaving the lane often to recover. At level 7 the skill build should take the form of 4-1-1-1.
For the boots slot the Juggernaut should choose Phase Boots. They give +18 to damage and +4 to armor, compensating for the character’s poor starting health and slow strength improvement. A Magic Wand is a nice all-around booster. When a match goes well for the Juggernaut’s team early on, they can try to band together and set out to demolish lane towers. Here the Juggernaut's Healing Ward will come in handy, improving allies' health regeneration. Under this scenario, getting attack-modifying items soon (e.g. the armor-decreasing Desolator) is a recipe for victory. Getting this item early improves solo target damage nicely when using Omnislash as well as helps against tower armor during team push. Items such as Battle Fury, Manta Style and Monkey King Bar will all increase attack damage considerably, but the Juggernaut’s abilities work the best with Aghanim's Scepter, which gives the user the Swiftslash ability. With that power he can destroy stray heroes without applying Omnislash.
The Juggernaut’s early armor and health are unimpressive, and so a 10th level right +5 to all attributes talent makes perfect sense for him. At the 15th level take the talent to boost attack speed by 20, this makes quite a difference. At the 20th level the left Blade Fury +160 damage per second talent is the better choice. For the 25th level the pick will depend on the game situation – either the +475 to health or +1 to Omnislash duration may be preferable.
The Juggernaut can wrap himself in magic immunity and shrug off spell buffs of heroes such as Enchantress and Invoker, which gives him an edge against enemies reliant on their skills. He is effective against low-health heroes, and with his ultimate ability he practically devastates enemies with a single click. Blade Fury's DoT does away with the Templar Assassin's Refraction almost right away, which makes that character an easy target. The T. A. also has a short attack range, and manipulating the Healing Ward can give that hero a runaround, the same goes for all close-combat enemies, which improves the Juggernaut’s survival chances.
The Juggernaut struggles against characters who can penetrate Blade Fury’s magic immunity and do damage or stun, like the Pudge with his Dismember or the Bane with Fiend's Grip. Some heroes can negate all physical damage, including that from Omnislash: Omniknight, Outworld Destroyer, Windranger, Pugna. Blinking heroes can warp right out of a Juggernaut encounter. Others have abilities that can rescue allies; the list includes Shadow Demon, Dazzle, Oracle, Winter Wyvern. This also inconveniences the Juggernaut. Heroes with strong armor, like Sven or Dragon Knight, can endure the Juggernaut’s ultimate ability. Some items in the enemy arsenal (Aeon Disk, Shadow Blade, Ghost Scepter) that give invisibility, invulnerability or damage reduction, reduce the Juggernaut’s efficiency a great deal.
The Juggernaut is a melee hero able to avoid enemy spells and destroy solitary targets with ease. He is, however, very vulnerable to ganking during cooldowns because of his low basic strength and mana. The Juggernaut's player should be ready to devote his attention to farming and getting the right equipment to improve the character’s abilities and let him dominate the midgame. If the match drags on, the Juggernaut becomes ineffective against heroes such as Spectre or Faceless Void, but strategic flexibility and various different early gear make the Juggernaut very useful in team tower destruction and an important team member at any game stage.