Viper Guide & Build - The Netherdrake Strategy

Viper Guide & Build, the Netherdrake Strategy. Viper is a poison-based hero. Its attack and defense are imbued with poisons. This post contains Viper the Netherdrake guide, item build, skill build and strategy.


A malicious Drake tamed by the Lich King himself, Viper is a fierce, acid-spitting beast whose speed and agility surprises the most hardened of warriors. Cursing himself into a maddened rage, Viper charges into battle without regard of his own safety. His salivary glands produce stinging poison that causes enemies to writhe in pain, severely damaging their nerves. Be careful when facing this powerful monster...its dark silhouette may be the last thing you will ever see.




Strength - 17 + 1.9
Agility - 21 + 2.5 (Primary)
Intelligence- 15 + 1.8

Base damage 44-46
Attack range of 575
Base Armor 2
Movement speed of 285



Netherdrake Skill Descriptions

Poison Attack (C)



Coats Viper's attack with poison. Slows movement and attack speeds and lasts 2 seconds.

Level 1 - Slows speed by 10%, deals 6 damage per second.
Level 2 - Slows speed by 20%, deals 12 damage per second.
Level 3 - Slows speed by 30%, deals 18 damage per second.
Level 4 - Slows speed by 40%, deals 24 damage per second.

Mana Cost: 20
Cooldown: 4,3,0,0

This is a good orbwalking skill and can be used to harass enemy.

Nethertoxin



Adds a powerful toxin to your attacks. Deals more damage the lower the target's health is. Half damage on non-hero units and buildings.

Level 1 - Maximum of 32 Bonus Damage.
Level 2 - Maximum of 64Bonus Damage.
Level 3 - Maximum of 96 Bonus Damage.
Level 4 - Maximum of 128 Bonus Damage.

This skill is good for last hitting and killing enemy.

Corrosive Skin



Viper's body is covered with poison. Any unit that attacks it becomes infected. Reduced movement and attack speed and minor damage for 3 seconds. The poison also absorbs some of the damage from spells.

Level 1 - 5% slow, 5 damage per second and 5% magic reduction.
Level 2 - 10% slow, 10 damage per second and 10% magic reduction.
Level 3 - 15% slow, 15 damage per second and 15% magic reduction.
Level 4 - 20% slow, 20 damage per second and 20% magic reduction.

This is a good defensive skill.

Viper Strike (V)



Strikes with a vicious bite, slowing movement and attack speed significantly and dealing poison damage over time. Lasts 5 seconds.

Level 1 - Deals 60 damage per second and slows speeds by 40%.
Level 2 - Deals 100 damage per second and slows speeds by 60%.
Level 3 - Deals 145 damage per second and slows speeds by 80%.

Cooldown: 80/50/30
Mana Cost: 125/175/250

This is deadly skill which can be used for opening or finishing attack.

Netherdrake Skill Build

Level 1: Poison Attack
Level 2: Nethertoxin
Level 3: Poison Attack
Level 4: Nethertoxin
Level 5: Poison Attack
Level 6: Viper Strike
Level 7: Nethertoxin
Level 8: Nethertoxin
Level 9: Poison Attack
Level 10: Corrosive Skin
Level 11: Viper Strike
Level 12: Corrosive Skin
Level 13: Corrosive Skin
Level 14: Corrosive Skin
Level 15: Stats
Level 16: Viper Strike
Levels 17-25: Stats

Get lvl 3 Poison Attack for orb walking.
Continue with Maxing Nethertoxin for last hitting more effective and killing enemy faster.
Corrosive Skin Should be maxed soon afterwards.
Viper Strike should be taken whenever possible. It's useful for increasing the amount of HP you can leave on a hero, finishing off windwalkers, and the lowered cooldown is invaluable as well.

Netherdrake Item Build

1. 2x Circlet of Nobility, Ironwood Branch and 2 Set of Tangos
2. Empty Bottle
3. Finish Bracer and Wraith Band
4. Power Tread or Phase Boots or Boots of Travel
5. Lothar's Edge or Manta Style or Black King Bar

Netherdrake's core item should be like this:

/ /
/ /


Wraith Bands / Bracers - Stat boost is necessary for Viper, who is fragile. Multiple Wraith Bands is a cost-effective way to boost damage of ganking agility heroes that shine in the early-mid game. A couple of Bracers, on the other hand, will more effectively provide HP.

Bottle - is the best source of regen on Viper. He's a ganker, and he uses all runes well. One slot, 600 gold, fast regen, and a measure against mana burners, makes bottle more effective and cost-efficient than other early regen items.

Which Boots?
Viper is one of those heroes that can wear any boot depending on the circumstances.
Rule-of-Thumb Method:
more Tankiness/ moderate dps boost/emergency mana -> Power Treads.
chasing plus raw dps -> Phasers
team has travels/ heavily gank oriented play / money to spare -> Travels.

Lothar's Edge - Strong offensive boost. Good for entering battle, and fleeing.

Manta Style - is a great item on Viper because
- images benefit from Power Treads' stats.
- All stats benefit Viper well.
- combined with beefy items, images are pretty hard to kill. Offensively it's decent (criticals applied, raw damage and Nethertoxin NOT applied)
- image splitting helps him survive when running away and dodging a spell.
- Rune checks, since Viper makes good use of them.

Black King Bar - Spell immunity covers Viper's greatest weakness (in a non-tank build) - stuns - allowing you to finish off heroes before running back, and preventing getting chain stunned.

Blink Dagger, Pipe and Vanguard are optional items.

Netherdrake Late Game Items

Here is core late game item for him:
/

Luxury late game items:


Butterfly - DPS + Evasion. Just one of the best items on Viper. Evasion is another qualitatively different addition for survivability, as are the other core items. Combined with Manta, his images gain evasion as well.

Ethereal Blade - definitely good amplifying damage, massive agility and gank /picking-off oriented.

Monkey King Bar - The best counter to Viper is to simply TP out. Viper with an MKB removes this as an option against him. Truestrike and tons of damage makes for a good late-DPS Viper.

Crystalys / Buriza - Buriza would be the best item to maximize single target DPS. Another good point is because Crystalys is cheap, the primary effect (critical) can be obtained more quickly, rather than having to wait for the entire gold amount for the effects (like with MKB). Critical synergizes very well with DPS that's already high.

Assault Cuirass - is a smart route to take, supporting the rest of the team with the positive and negative auras to shift the tides towards team's favor. Armor and attack speed adds to DPS and survivability at the same time.
-Also, IAS is a way to increase DPS of on-attack triggers like Nethertoxin and Critical. Even if the numbers of Nethertoxin actually can't be increased, by attacking more frequently can increase DPS.

Heart of Tarrasque - good item for survivability during battle because it gives huge amount of HP although it doesn't give regen.

Netherdrake Strategy

You can pick this hero when your team needs Babysitter, Supporting Chaser, Tank, Early Carry or Late DPS.
You need to be supported by:
- Shielder-Healers (free BKB + Mekanism)
They (such as Purist, Dazzle and Abadon) can do both, rather than just one, doing much to prevent your quick squishy death, allowing you to further chase and kill.
- Invisibility Granters (free Lothar's)
These provide positioning and an escape mechanism. They (such as Rooftrellen and Mirana) can also stun.
- Chase Assisters (free Blink Dagger)
(Dark seer is actually everyone's best ally =]) Most of the time, getting Blink Dagger can be a bit risky because that's 2k gold with no added survivability. But with abilities like surge and toss you basically have a blink dagger. In chasing situations, distance-closing abilities works best on a hero who can slow, since this allows the rest of your team catches up to attack, instead of that one hero alone..

Beware of his counter:
- Disabler: You are fragile and don't have escape mechanism.
- Silencers + DPS: You become useless in your role to slow enemies and become a glass cannon.

In early minutes if you will not act as early carry, lane with your team's carry and baby sit him, using your lane controlling abilities. Opt to solo middle with a bottle if you will be playing early-mid game carry. You must do these:
- Harassing: close to the creep line, and keep enemies farther away by casting poison attack if they go forward, while making it easier for you to last hit.
- Staying Safe: When playing Viper, the key is to recognize them, and keep yourself out of such situations preventatively, with:
1) Map awareness agianst getting ganked. Surprise nukes is Viper's strongest counter and biggest weakness. This is largely preventable with map awareness, knowing who is missing, and with wards - observers if they are windwalkers.
2) Maintaining distance when laning. Maintaining distance is the method of staying safe when up agianst opponents that you know will instantly convert you into gold and experience if you get clipped with a stun. (i.e. Rhasta + a DPS/nuker You know once you get caught, that's it.)
3) Knowing when potential death-dealers are "tied-up" in big battle situations. If you watch good replays, it will seem like Viper has no trouble walking into the heat and killing a hero. It actually isn't as simple as that. The reason he was able to do so was because potential threats against Viper have beeen tied up in one way or another and the Viper player was aware of his pre-occupation.

In the middle game, you should gank gank gank whenever possible in order to make the most of your "timed life" and give every ounce of advantage to your team.
You can use Viper Strike:
- when enemy HP is low and might get away (run speed, blink, invisibility, etc.) to kill him with the DOT, even if he does blink away.
- in 1vs1 situtations, as a surprise nuke to throw off their sense of whether they can win the fight or not
- for the greater slow (up to 80%) for letting your team pound the target.

In the late game, your role is much the same role as Mid-Game: to slow and pick off weak heroes. But the battlefield has become more intense, and you are not as dominant as you were early and mid game. You require finesse and good timing that comes with awareness. So you are by no means invincible; your enemies can pop you in a blink if you are not careful. The best thing to do is to stay alive and contribute DPS and focus fire, doing everything you can to avoid focus fire yourself. The only exception may be is if you can take down the enemy carry. You can defend, sweep through neutral creeps, and take on Roshan with pretty good speed. Viper is a great farmer, and even more insane late game, and 1-2 minutes bench time can make a huge difference in your gold to dominate the late game with amazing items.

Based on: Playdota Guide

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