You’re playing Arc Warden wrong, here’s how the pros do it now

By Kenneth Williams


Jul 22, 2022

Reading time: 2 min

Arc Warden is usually one of Dota 2’s most boring heroes, but pros are using a new build that turns him into the game’s strongest caster.

When watching a Dota 2 draft, there are a few heroes that nobody wants to see. Amid the Lone Druids and Spectres, one hero stands on top as the most boring of all. Arc Warden is usually a scaling split-push hero that stacks active items, dragging out the game for an hour if he can. But a new build centered around Octarine Core turns him into something completely different.

The new Arc Warden build is being debuted at Riyadh Masters, a $4 million tournament in Saudi Arabia. It has won two of three matches so far thanks to OG carry Artem “Yuragi” Golubiev. Enzo “Timado” O’Connor of TSM FTX also attempted the build unsuccessfully. If this build can win games with millions on the line, it can definitely earn you some MMR.

How to build Arc Warden like the Dota 2 pros

The secret to the new Arc Warden build is Octarine Core, which turns the hero from a split-pushing threat into an area denial demon. With Octarine and Gleipner, Arc can control the pace of a team fight from afar.

The build follows the normal items for the first few slots, meaning Boots of Speed, Hand of Midas, and Maelstrom. But instead of the usual Mjollnir, pro players prefer to build into Gleipnir. The active effect that holds enemy heroes in place is extremely strong, and having two of them can make teamfights feel like a breeze. 

Immediately after, Yuragi builds an Octarine Core. This is the true secret to the build, as it makes all of Arc Warden’s spells have incredible uptime.

Flux’s cooldown goes down to 12 seconds with six seconds duration, and that means 100% uptime with a Tempest Double. Spark Wraith’s cooldown drops down to just three seconds, which is effectively cut to 1.5 seconds. Octarine Core also makes Tempest Double more available, which is an issue with the normal build. In combination with the Flux cast range and Spark Wraith damage talents at 10 and 20, it’s nearly impossible to approach or run from Arc Warden.

After Octarine, Aghanim’s Scepter fits perfectly with the area denial theme. Spark Wraiths will respawn themselves after damaging an enemy, which quickly snowballs into a massive minefield that Techies players envy. Item builds diverge after this point with Yuragi preferring Overwhelming Blink. 

Arc Warden is very versatile once the Octarine Core and Gleipnir bases are covered, so try to think of useful activities and remember you can use them twice. Silver Edge or Bloodthorn is a perfect answer for a pesky enemy hero.