The 7.26b patch for Dota 2 has been released, bringing with it adjustments to gold gain, buffs to towers, and nerfs to the deny mechanic as well as all hero talents.
Here’s a breakdown of all the changes that came with the update:
Gold gain adjustments
The 7.26b patch continues to tinker with gold gain in an effort to slow down the pace of games in high-level pubs and competitive play. The biggest change introduced is that Reliable gold is now only acquired in the form of the passive income for each player which amounts to 1 gold every .7 seconds (or 85 gold every minute).
For those unaware, every player’s gold income in Dota 2 is split into reliable gold and unreliable gold, with the difference between the two lying in how each is spent when a player dies, buys an item, or uses buyback.
When a player’s hero is killed, the gold penalty for their death is taken only from the unreliable gold pool. Whenever a player buys an item, the gold they spend uses up unreliable gold first before falling back to reliable gold. Meanwhile, using buyback uses up reliable gold first.
With reliable gold only being acquired through passive income instead of through destroying buildings or killing enemy heroes, couriers, and Roshan as before, the gold penalty from dying is now even more punishing. When you know you are about to succumb to a gank from now on, make sure that you either have enough gold for buyback saved up or that you have already spent as much gold as you can before dying to minimize the penalty.
Icefrog still threw us all a bone, however, as the gold gained from melee lane creeps, neutral creeps, and bounties from assisting in kills has been buffed.
Last-hitting melee lane creeps now yield at least 34 gold, while the 10% reduction on gold gained from all neutral creeps introduced in the 7.26 patch has been reverted.
With the popularity of pushing heroes such as Chen and Lycan in the current meta, the towers have been made stronger to make pushing-oriented strategies harder.
The Tower Protection aura granted by Towers to all friendly units in a radius of 900 units has been made stronger, as it now grants health regeneration on top of bonus armor. Tier one towers grant +1 HP regen and 3 armor while all other towers grant +3 HP regen and 5 armor.
In addition, all towers at tier two and above had their health and damage increased by 500 and 25, respectively.
Deny mechanic nerfs
Another major change brought by the 7.26b patch is the nerfs to the deny mechanic, as denying a creep now gives more experience (from 40% to 50% of the normal exp gained) to enemies on top of no longer giving gold to the denier.
The above changes essentially reverts the creep deny mechanic to how it was in Dota 2 version 6.88, which was released back in September 2014. To put things in perspective, that update first introduced Bounty Runes to the game.
Hero talent nerfs
Perhaps the most intriguing change in this update is that all hero talents have been made “about 20% weaker”. The change only affects talents that add numerical upgrades to hero stats and abilities. Talents that add new mechanics to certain heroes and abilities, such as Queen of Pain’s Level 25 talent that applies Fear to all enemies hit by her Scream of Pain ability, remain unchanged.
For the list of hero talents affected by this change, check here.
In addition to all the aforementioned changes to gameplay mechanics, neutral item drop times and experience requirements for levels 9-13 have also been changed.
Neutral item drop times for Tiers 2 through 4 have been rescaled. While Neutral items will still start dropping at Tier 1 starting at the 7-minute mark of every game, Tier 2 items now drop at the 17-minute mark, Tier 3 items start dropping at the 27-minute mark, while Tier 4 items start dropping at the 37-minute mark. The drop times for Tier 5 items at the 60-minute mark remain unchanged, however.
Here are the new experience requirements for the affected hero levels:
Aside from the major changes listed above, 7.26b also nerfs essential items, namely Gloves of Haste, Blades of Attack, Ring of Basilius, and Hood of Defiance, by increasing their gold costs.
Gloves of Haste and Blades of Attack now both cost 450 gold, Ring of Basilius had its recipe cost increased to 200 gold, and Hood of Defiance now has a recipe that costs 200 gold.
Hand of Midas also continues to grow weaker as an item, even if it the item itself wasn’t directly nerfed by the patch. The item now costs a total of 2,300 gold to build due to Gloves of Haste now costing more, while its Transmute ability now grants unreliable gold due to passive gold income being changed to become the only source of reliable gold in the game.
Lastly, Healing Salve had its healing duration increased from 8 to 10 seconds. The item’s total heal amount remains at 500 health, but is instead applied through 50 health restored for every second of its duration.
To see the full list of changes that came with the 7.26b patch, check out the patch notes here.