Updated on October 10, 1:10 p.m. (GMT+8): Added relevant links and images .

For years, Pudge has been Dota’s most popular hero. No matter how weak or strong the hero is, he’s a frequent sight in pub games — every one in four matches features the Butcher, according to Dotabuff.

But recently, trends have pointed toward the hero as not just a frustrating support, but a phenomenal carry. It’s one thing to ignore a Pudge when all he does is run around and Hook. It’s another when he’s right up in your face, killing your whole team with Rot, while proving unkillable with Flesh Heap.

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To prevent that nightmare situation, here are the five best counters to Pudge across a variety of positions. No matter your role, there’s an answer for the fearsome Butcher.

Funko Pop! Games: Dota 2 - Pudge with Cleaver
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Five best Pudge counters

Pudge, Dota 2 intro
Credit: Valve
  • Ursa
  • Batrider
  • Magnus
  • Timbersaw
  • Grimstroke


Dota 2 Ursa Ferocious Heart loading screen
Credit: Valve

Ursa is perhaps the best counter to Pudge from a carry position. Pudge likes to play up close and personal — just the way Ursa likes it.

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It’s nearly impossible for a Pudge to get away from your clutches. Fury Swipes’ stacking damage can take down even the tankiest of Pudges, while inbuilt status resistance in Enrage and the Aghanim’s Shard upgraded Earthshock mean that Pudge will have a far more difficult time eliminating Ursa.


Dota 2 Batrider Burning Jack Bomber
Credit: Valve

If there’s somebody that can play keep away with Pudge, Batrider is one of the best choices.

Batrider’s multiple slows and repositioning abilities in Sticky Napalm and Flamebreak makes it difficult for Pudge to ever catch up to him or his allies.

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It’s also difficult to land Hooks on Batrider, thanks to his general high movement speed and flying movement with Firefly. And while Firefly isn’t the most threatening ability against Pudge early on, thanks to Flesh Heap, Sticky Napalm’s additional damage makes the matchup far better the later the game goes.

Plus, Pudge is never safe while using Dismember, even with a Black King Bar. Flaming Lasso is a debuff immunity-piercing spell that makes Pudge wary of every tight corner.


Credit: Valve

Magnus has multiple stuns and repositioning abilities that can disrupt Pudge, who wants to stay in one spot and Rot down multiple targets. Skewer and Reverse Polarity are great lockdown tools for the immensely slow hero, while the former doubles as an escape tool.

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Pudge doesn’t like it when the game’s pace gets too speedy — so help your allies to get there. Magnus’ Empower helps accelerate cores so that they can get faster and better items than Pudge, who can get outscaled easily, even as a carry.


Dota 2 Timbersaw Iceiceice set loading screen
Credit: Valve

Timbersaw is the premier strength hero counter, and Pudge is no exception. Pudge likes to stay close, and Timbersaw relishes the opportunity to throw out Whirling Deaths, taking out 10 percent of their strength immediately.

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Timberaw’s litany of pure damage and burst spells scales well into the late game as well. Pudge, carry or not, likes to build resistance items. Pure damage circumvents that, letting you deal consistent damage to the Butcher. Burst damage also counters Flesh Heap, which only reduces damage in small increments — good for Rot, not great for Chakram.

The hero also likes to build tanky items like Sange and Kaya, a perfect fit for frontlining against Pudge.


Dota 2 Grimstroke Herald of the Ember Eye loading screen
Credit: Valve

Playing support can be a terrifying experience when faced with a good Pudge. It can feel helpless every time you get hooked and bitten, but Grimstroke is an appropriate response if you want to stay far away.

Phantom’s Embrace silence stops Pudge from channeling Dismember. His slow attack speed also means it’s difficult for him to get rid of the phantom, generally forcing him to go Black King Bar earlier than he wants.

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Ink Swell lets heroes get away from Pudge or initiate on him with little fear, since the stun will prevent him from retaliating. The spell also gains a dispel once Aghanim’s Shard is unlocked, and can be used to save Dismembered targets.

Soulbind helps Leash Pudge to one spot, even through spell immunity. It’s the cherry on the top for the support hero, who can help his cores lock down the pesky target.

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