Lone Druid has always given Dota 2 developers fits, as the hero constantly seems to be the source of serious game-breaking bugs. Things are no different these days, with another new bug popping up.
A serious new bug has been discovered with Lone Druid’s bear that makes the summonable unit wildly overpowered. A strange oversight allows the Spirit Bear to equip a Divine Rapier in its neutral item slot. Not only that, but doing so will prevent the Divine Rapier from dropping to the ground upon death, which ensures that the item can’t fall into enemy hands.
On top of all that, this bug isn’t even difficult to execute. It just needs the player to shift around their items a bit. Here are the required steps:
This bug is very easy to pull off and requires no special tools to use. All one needs to do is acquire the Divine Rapier, move it into the stash, and drag and drop the item into the neutral item slot of the Spirit Bear. Testing shows that the Spirit Bear will not lose the Divine Rapier no matter how it dies, whether through its own death or the death of Lone Druid.
Divine Rapiers left in the normal item slots will still fall as one would expect.
The Divine Rapier can’t be moved into the neutral item spot in any other way. Attempting to move it from the regular item slots, backpack, or from Lone Druid onto the bear will yield the normal result when trying to move a regular item into a neutral item slot.
This bug can be used on any other item, and it will behave normally. Items like Heart of Tarrasque will still offer bonus stats while Black King Bar will be usable as normal, albeit with its hotkey mapped to the neutral item slot.
This bug is an incredibly useful tool in late-game situations, even without using Divine Rapier. With teams only being given four tier-five neutral items, this guarantees that both Lone Druid and his Spirit Bear can be fully kitted. The ability to have a Divine Rapier without the downside of it being potentially stolen by the enemy team is just a particularly strong wrinkle to this bug.
Lone Druid having a serious issue isn’t a new phenomenon. The hero has been a constant thorn in the sides of Dota 2 developers.
The worst bug came several years ago when Lone Druid players could crash servers and make it so that games don’t count by moving items such as Black King Bar back and forth between the hero and his Spirit Bear. More recently, the neutral item Magic Lamp had an unintended interaction where the item would keep the Spirit Bear alive even if Lone Druid died, which was a powerful exploit as it allowed players to buy back without having to worry about the summoning cooldown for the Spirit Bear. This was never fixed, and was eventually addressed by Magic Lamp’s complete removal from the game.
Lone Druid has fallen out of favor in the current meta, but still inhabits a unique niche. Because of how Spirit Bear works, the hero is arguably the strongest late-game hero in the game because of how he can become effectively “12-slotted,” making use of more items than any other hero in Dota 2. With this bug, he can even become 13-slotted.