DotA 2 is easily the most complicated esport you can bet on. Over 100 heroes, an ever changing meta, the most complex pick ban phase in any esport, a nuanced and delicate laning phase which leads into the most coordination heavy team fights in any game.

All of these things combine to make DotA 2 betting a daunting task for people that are unfamiliar with the game. To help ease potential DotA 2 bettors into the game, here are the basics for DotA 2 betting.

“Trophy" How the Game Works

DotA 2 is a 5v5 MOBA. The objective of the game is to destroy the opponents Ancient, which is a building in their base. The game starts with a laning phase, where the two teams battle each other in small skirmishes in one of three lanes. The teams will try to push their waves down the lanes to destroy the enemies towers, which allow them to get into the enemies base.

The heroes gain XP through killing enemies, creeps, and buildings, and use that XP to level up and upgrade their skills. They also collect gold, which they can use to build items. Some items are consumable, some are active, and some are passive.


The first thing you need to understand if you want to participate in DotA 2 betting is how the positions work. The five players are numbered one through five, with one being the hardest carry, and five being the hardest support.

Carries are the players who do the most damage. They’ll pick up the most kills, and are usually the flashiest players on the team. Carrys get the most resources, which can mean gold, XP, and help from teammates, in an attempt to secure kills and objectives to further their team.

Supports do the opposite. They generally play with limited resources, and their kits are mostly focused on aiding their allies. This can mean stuns, slows, buffs, debuffs, pretty much anything that isn’t focused on killing people directly.

Pick Ban

The pick ban is one of the most difficult things to understand in DotA 2. Each team gets six bans and five picks, which are spread out evenly over the pick ban phase. When DotA 2 betting, the pick ban is crucial to know which team has an advantage.

Here is a list of some of the things you need to be concerned about during the pick ban phase:

  • What’s the balance of ranged vs melee heroes?
  • How much lockdown do they have?
  • Do they have hard stuns, or slows?
  • Can they push towers effectively?
  • What kind of itemization will they require?
  • What kind of fights are they looking for?
  • When is the best time for the team to be taking fights?

It’s unlikely you’ll ever see the same composition twice in a tournament, so you need to know how to evaluate them on the fly.

“Trophy" Items

Itemization is a crucial part of every hero’s build in DotA. Items can changed a heroes position both up and down, they can make heroes viable, and they can dictate the course of a match. Items in DotA 2 fall into several categories.


Consumables are items that can be, well, consumed. This means any sort of potions, clarity’s, Black King Bar, things of that nature. These items will either be a one time use, or they will carry multiple charges.


Passives are items that give the user some sort of stat boost, health boost, mana boost, or other ability, that requires no input from the user. Passives help you just by virtue of having them in your inventory. Some Passives can take input from the player, like the Armlet of Mordiggian.


Actives are items that require the user to take some sort of an action. Something like a force staff, or a magic stick, which give heroes extra abilities that they don’t normally have access to.

Obviously, items can be extremely powerful. They can completely change the way that heroes approach the game, and can cause big swings when the items come online.

“Trophy" Timing

Timing plays a big role in DotA 2, especially when live DotA 2 betting. Each hero in the game has a certain timing at which they are they’re at their most powerful. For some heroes, that’s very early in the game, for others it’s very late.

Understanding when lineups are at their maximum strength is important. Let’s say there are two teams, team A and team B. Team A’s lineup is very early game focused, while Team B’s focuses on the late game. Team A needs the game to finish quickly. Every second that it doesn’t, Team B’s chances of winning increase. If Team B can withstand Team A’s early game assault, and bring the game to its later stages, they will almost surely take the game.

“Trophy" Laning Phase vs Team Fight Phase

When a game of DotA 2 starts, teams will maintain fairly predictable positions. They’ll send anywhere between one and three players to each of the three lanes, and attempt to push their waves to the opponent’s tower, secure kills, and get farm. This laning stage is fairly indicative of how the rest of the game will play out, as the winner of the laning stage will be ahead in farm and XP.

The team fight phase begins once teams feel as though they’ve farmed enough. The teams will begin to roam the map, looking to take team fights. This is when you will see the carrys and the supports start to do their respective jobs, as supports pin opponents down and carrys nuke them to oblivion. After winning these team fights, teams will take the opportunity to push out objectives, take towers, purchase more items, and encroach further on the enemy bases.

DotA 2 is a game that can’t easily be explained. To really learn how to excel at DotA 2 betting, you need to watch the game, and ideally play the game. This should serve as a jumping off point for those of you who want to learn more. Stay tuned here, where we’ll be giving you additional DotA 2 content in the future.

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