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The Solo Hero, Magnus Magnataur

Created by rjay01 on 2010-01-11
Last modified: -
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This guide was chosen as Guide of the Month for January, 2010

Rating: 1010101010

Want a hero that is assigned almost all roles? Want a hero that has the potential to destroy the whole enemy team in less than 4 hits? What about a hero that is capable to lane solo against almost any hero in the game? Not to mention he is one of the best farmers in DotA, (even at early game), which allows you to farm your full build in 40-50 minutes in game. There's only one hero for you. Magnus, The Magnataur. The solo hero.. from laning to battles.. Magnus can solo anything in his way. My second guide for will focus on Magnus's capabilities of solo mid, which is essential to boost your mid-late game (where Magnus shines out of the rest).

Magnus - Magnataur

Range: | Move Speed: 315
Primary: STR
Str: 21 + 2.75 | Agi: 15 + 1.8 | Int: 17 + 1.65
Damage: 49 61 | HP: 549 | Mana: 221
HP Regen: 0.88 | Mana Regen: 0.69
Attack Speed: 0.68 | Armor: 4
Shockwave (W)
A wave of force ripples out from the Hero, causing damage to land units in a line.
Level 1 - 75 damage.
Level 2 - 150 damage.
Level 3 - 225 damage.
Level 4 - 300 damage.
Damage type: magical
If a unit exits and enters the area of effect it will be damaged two times.
This skill only affects ground units.
Casting range: 500
Area of Effect: 150 (AoE)/ 850 (Distance)
Mana Cost: 90
Cooldown: 11/10/9/8
Comment: Low cool-down, low mana-cost, high damage nuke. This is what makes Magnus a strong lane controller, a fast pusher, and an excellent farmer. Shockwave allows you to control your lane, which is why Magnus is a viable soloer.

Empower (E)
Gives an allied unit bonus damage and Cleave. Lasts for 30 seconds.
Level 1 - 15% attack damage bonus, 15% Cleave.
Level 2 - 25% attack damage bonus, 25% Cleave.
Level 3 - 35% attack damage bonus, 35% Cleave.
Level 4 - 45% attack damage bonus, 45% Cleave.
Only increases base damage and that given by the primary attribute of the units. Raw bonus damage is not increased.
Casting range: 800
Mana Cost: 40
Cooldown: 12 seconds
Comment: With its low cool-down and the duration being four times longer, this skill can be used non-stop on either you and/or your ally. This skill is your support skill. But most of all, it's your main source of damage.
Skewer (D)
Magnataur rushes forward, goring enemies on his massive tusks. Charges up to 800 range max. Units hit will be stuck with you until you reach your targeted point, at which point they will be slowed by 40% for 2 seconds.
Level 1 - Deals 70 damage and maims. Max 1 target.
Level 2 - Deals 140 damage and maims. Max 2 targets.
Level 3 - Deals 210 damage and maims. Max 3 targets.
Level 4 - Deals 280 damage and maims. Max 4 targets.
Casting Range: 800
Area of Effect: 120
Damage type: magic
Magnataur charges to the target location at a speed of 950.
The first 2 enemy units hit will be pulled along with him to the destination.
Units pulled with Magnataur will be slowed by 40% for 2 seconds after the charge, and take damage.
Mana Cost: 80
Cooldown: 35 Seconds
Comment: Mighty Swing is what makes you able to kill your whole enemy team on your own. With its splash damage plus your items you will be able to clear entire creep waves in one or two hits and deal insane damage to all nearby heroes no matter which one you focus.
Reverse Polarity
Reverse Polarity (V)
Through some unknown property of matter, the Magnataur sucks all nearby enemies to a location in front of him and stuns them with a powerful slam, dealing damage.
Level 1 - Deals 150 damage and stuns for 2.5 seconds.
Level 2 - Deals 225 damage and stuns for 3.25 seconds.
Level 3 - Deals 300 damage and stuns for 4 seconds.
Area of Effect: 410
Damage type: magical
Disable works on magic immune units.
Pulls affected units to a random location 120-170 units in front of Magnataur.

Mana Cost: 200/250/300
Cooldown: 120/110/100 seconds
Comment: Reverse Polarity is one of the most devastating and game-breaking ultis in DotA. Pulling off a good Reverse Polarity can decide the entire team battle. It is however, very hard to pull off with its 410 area of effect. 4 second stun infront of you is no laughing matter for the enemy team.
Skill Build

Skill Build:

1. Shockwave
2. Stats
3. Shockwave
4. Stats
5. Shockwave
6. Reverse Polarity
7. Shockwave
8. Stats
9. Empower
10. Empower
11. Reverse Polarity
12. Empower
13. Empower
14. Mighty Swing
15. Mighty Swing
16. Reverse Polarity
17. Mighty Swing
18. Mighty Swing
19. Stats
20. Stats
21. Stats
22. Stats
23. Stats
24. Stats
25. Stats
Item Build

Item Build:

1.View Details for Empty Bottle
Empty Bottle
Active: Regenerate
Restores 135 HP and 70 mana over 3 seconds. Effect ends if you take damage. When used, Magic Bottle 3/3 changes to 2/3, 2/3 changes to 1/3, and 1/3 changes to Empty Bottle. Can't be used when Empty Bottle. 0.5 second cooldown.
Active: Rune Capture
Stores a rune in an Empty Bottle. When a rune is used, this item is refilled to Magic Bottle 3/3. Stored runes are automatically used after 120 seconds. Can't be drop if it has a rune stored.
Note: This item is refilled to Magic Bottle 3/3 when near the fountain.
Bottle will help you through your entire early game. This is a very important item to lane solo mid.
2.View Details for Power Treads
Power Treads
60 Movement Speed
30 Attack Speed
8 Selected Attribute

Active: Switch Attribute
Switches the attribute that receives a bonus. From Strength to Intelligence, Intelligence to Agility, and Agility to Strength.
Note: Can only carry one. Movement speed bonus doesn't stack with Boots of Travel, Phase Boots, Power Treads, or Boots of Speed.
Boots of Speed + Gloves of Haste + Boots of Elvenskin or Robe of the Magi or Belt of Giant Strength
Provides Strength and IAS which Magnus needs. Not only that, you can change attributes in case your out of Mana. (Change to Int Treads)
3.View Details for Kelen
Kelen's Dagger
Active: Blink
Teleports the caster to 1200 range. Can't be used if the carrier was damaged by an enemy player-controlled unit or Roshan in the last 3 seconds. 75 manacost. 14 seconds cooldown.
Note: can't be held by Butcher or Vengeful Spirit.
This is the MOST important item for Magnus. This is your positioning tool for your Ulti.
4.View Details for Battle Fury
Battle Fury
65 Damage
6 HP Regeneration
150% Mana Regeneration
Passive: Cleave
35% cleave on attack. 225 AoE. Cleave doesn't work on ranged units.
Claymore + Broadsword + Perseverance
Battle Fury is gotten after Blink Dagger because it gives you huge damage burst from its Stacked cleave with Mighty swing. It also gives HP and mana regen which allows Magnus to spam spam spam!
Skill Build

Early Game:


Magnus - Magnataur"I am ready. Choose me now!"


Okay, so now you have chosen Magnataur. Your sole role in the game is the initiator. Do not be afraid to be the first to go in battles, otherwise, this is not the hero for you. Not only can Magnus initiate, he can also support allies by buffing them, he can gank well, and he can also play the carry role.

Now to see the Magnataur's strengths and weaknesses:


  • Has a spammable high damage nuke for farm, harass and push
  • Good base strength meaning high base damage
  • High stregth gain per level (2.75+)
  • Decent Ganker
  • One of the best farmers in the game
  • Extremely good pusher
  • Amazing synergy between skills
  • Amazing lane control
  • Game-breaking Ultimate


  • Dependant on Kelen's Dagger for the low of AOE ulti
  • Low mana pool
  • Has slow attack speed

We will center on fixing the weaknesses of Magnus later in the guide.

Early Game Strategy - Solo Mid Magnus

I bet most of you will be thinking, “What the hell? Magnus solo mid? Are you crazy?!

The reason why Magnus has amazing lane control because of his spammable nuke Shockwave. Not only that, Magnus has high base strength and fast attack animation, meaning easier last hits, and being able to survive multiple harass from enemies.

Early Game Objectives:

  • Control your lane
  • Acquire as much runes as you possibly can
  • Gank (optional)
  • Farm that Blink Dagger!!

Starting Items

In public games, where you can rely only on yourself, buy an Animal Courier. It is important to get your bottle as fast as possible!

As for other starting items, it doesn't matter really.. Magnus has high base strength which means he can last hit easily in his lane, and can also tank a bit of harassment. There is no "set" starting item build, go whatever build you normally use. As long as you have your courier, that's all that matters in this section. The main point is that you farm that bottle asap so that you can outfarm, outharass, outlane your opponent.

Starting items to consider

Ancient Tango of EssifationLesser Clarity PotionHealing Salve

Justification: Self explanitory. You need regen to survive in your lane.

Stat Items:
Circlet of NobilityIronwood BranchGauntlets of Ogre Strength

Justification: Stats help you with HP, Damage, and Mana. 

Magic Stick > Magic Wand:
Magic StickMagic Wand

Justification: If you predict that the enemy you will face in your lane is a spammer (Zeus, Bristleback etc.) then you can consider getting a magic stick. Later on, you can upgrade it to Magic wand.

Empty Bottle (800 starting gold only):
Empty Bottle

Justification: If you saw my first guide, then you would know that I'm against getting a Bottle as a starting item. But I'll make an exception. With Mag's nice starting strength, bottle can be accepted as a first item for early rune captures.


The Laning Phase

This is it. After you bought your items, tell your allies you want to "Solo mid". Ignore their flaming and rage about your desicion. As long as they let you solo mid, then there is nothing to worry about. Level up your Shockwave and head off to mid.

What are the key points to soloing mid?

1a. Learning Shockwave

If you've noticed in Magnus's skills information, Shockwave at all levels cost 90 mana. This shouts out "spam"!

Before you go to your lane, you must know what the range of shockwave is:

The image above shows the Casting Range and the Actual Range (length) Shockwave reaches.

The length of the red box from where Magnus is, is the length of how far you can click in order for Shockwave to be casted. The yellow box shows how far Shockwave reaches from where Magnus is. Anything inside the Red and Yellow box will get hit by the 150 AOE of Shockwave.

1b. Shockwave --> Farm --> Harass!!
Now that you know how to use shockwave, we can use this technique. This is Magnus's MAIN technique to rule his lane. This technique involves farming and harassing at the same time with just one shockwave.

Here's an animated image to show how this is done:


  1. Wait for an enemy creep to reach low HP (enough to finish it off with a Shockwave)
  2. Get in a position where you're in a Parallel line between you, the creep, and the enemy hero
  3. Aim shockwave between that parallel line (make sure not to click above the cast range)
  4. Cast shockwave and earn some cash while harassing the enemy!

Comment: At the stage where you only have level 1 Shockwave, try to last hit as much as you possibly can until you hit level 3. Sure, you can use a bit of mana with only level 1 Shockwave, but just hold back a bit. Save a bit of mana until you level 3. When you have level 2 Shockwave start spamming like a mad man!

2a. Rune whoring

This part of the early game strategy is VERY IMPORTANT! Please read this section

What is rune whoring anyway? Rune whoring is where you race your enemy to get the runes.  Runes are extremely important for Magnus in the laning phase because even though your Shockwave is spammable, there will be a time where you won't have mana left. This is when you know you have to Rune whore!

How to Rune-whore with Magnus:

Step 1 - Checking the DotA Clock

If you want to beat your ally to the runes, the first step is to check the DotA clock. Runes spawn every 2 minutes (2:00-->4:00-->6:00 etc.), so you need to be aware when the runes will appear.

Step 2 - Push the Lane with Shockwave

What does this have to do with Rune whoring? This is actually an important point that most people don't know. When the DotA Clock reaches around xx:40 second mark, start pushing as much as you possibly can! Why? Because your enemy has to defend at tower against your creeps while you can start walking to a rune location to grab the rune.

Step 3 - Walk to the Rune (XX:45)

When you see that there is 15 seconds left until the next rune spawn, start walking to a rune spot. If your lucky, the spawned at your side! If it spawned on the other side, and your enemy doesn't notice, then get it whenever possible.


2b. Acquiring the Runes

Now that you know when where and how to get the Runes, it's time that you need to know how to utilize them. Some runes are useful to Magnus, whereas there are Runes that work extremely well with Magnus's skills. So that's what we need to focus on when acquiring Runes.

Illusion - Is great for mind games. Send an illusion in as if it were the real Magnus and watch your enemy waste their skills on the illusion. It doesnt really synergise with Magnus much so I mostly just bring each Illusion to the different rune spots to scout.

Double Damage - Helps better with last hits. One hit on an enemy will deal a ton of damage. If you pull off a good ulti, you can activate the DD rune from your bottle and whack him 'til he dies.

Regen - This rune is very very useful rune for farming and also heal up when you've been dealt a ton of damage. A good trick is to save it in the bottle, spam as much Shockwaves as possible, then once all your mana is depleted, activate the Regen rune!

Invisibility - This skill gives great synergy with your Ulti. It helps to position yourself at a good place where you can pull off a good Reverse Polarity. Great for ganks. Also remember that you can use one bottle charge straight after you've activated Invisibility. It won't affect the fade time.

Haste - Grants you maximum speed (522ms). Imo, the best rune for Magnus. Haste can be used for escaping, but most of all, he can pull off an easy Ulti with your speed boost. Not only that, you can tower dive no problem if the enemy is close to dead and moving towards his tower.


3. Ganking (Optional)

At early game, Magnus can't gank that well. Because the small AOE of Reverse Polarity makes it hard to pull off, therefore high chance of a fail gank. And Magnus doesn't have any reliable disables that can make him an effective ganker. But ganking can be still easy.

Easy? How?

  • You still have that high nuke of yours Shockwave which can deal lots of damage and/or finish off a dying hero.
  • Know your allies. You could have allies that have disables, which helps you to gank successfully.
  • Also powerups such as Haste/Invisibility can help you achieve a successful gank.

But ganking is not as important as farming that Blink Dagger. So this is optional. If you're 100% certain that you can achieve a successful gank then do so. If not, then go back to your lane and farm that blink dagger. Because that is MUCH MORE IMPORTANT!


Reverse Polarity

Reverse Polarity

Through some unknown property of matter, the Magnataur sucks all nearby enemies to his position and stuns them with a powerful slam, dealing damage. 120 second cooldown all levels.

Level 1 - 2.50 second stun, deals 150 damage. 200 mana.
Level 2 - 3.25 second stun, deals 225 damage. 250 mana.
Level 3 - 4.00 second stun, deals 300 damage.
300 mana.

Before knowing how to gank, you will need knowledge of Reverse Polarity.
Reverse Polarity is an AOE stun that (when inside the 410 AOE) drags your enemy in a random 120-170 AOE infront of you. Creeps get stunned longer than heroes.

This is the Area of Effect of Reverse Polarity:

This is the AOE of Magnus ulti. Anything inside this red circle will get stunned and dragged in front of Magnus. Be aware of the AOE size when casting this. It looks kind of big, but it's hard to pull off than it looks.

Aftermath of Reverse Polarity:

This is where the enemies will be dragged after Magnus casts his Ulti. It's in a small AOE infront of magnus.

Gank or No gank?

After acquring a rune, don't go back to your lane straight away. Check for any opportunities of an easy gank. Now that you know everything about Reverse Polarity, you now have the option of ganking or not ganking with magnus early game. Don't gank if you're not 100% certain if it will go as well as you expected.


Main Item to Aim For

Blink Dagger


Dagger should be gotten to end your early game. This is the most IMPORTANT item for Magnus throughout the whole game. This item helps Magnus initiate, which is what his main role is for the team. It's main use is for positioning yourself to cast a perfect Reverse Polarity in battles. Can sometimes be helpful for escaping trouble, but it's not reliable for that.

Now let's cross out one of our cons since positioning is not a big issue for us anymore..


Boots Upgrade

Power Treads   vs   Phase Boots   vs   Boots of Travel

So which Boots Upgrade best suits Magnus? The answer is: Power Treads.

Why? If we look at the Cons, what Magnus lacks is attack speed. He also lacks mana pool which Treads can fix (Change to Intellegnce Treads). Also Magnus has high base movement speed (315ms) which means Magnus doesn't really need more added ms than just the treads. And best of all, Power treads is the most cheap out of all upgrades and has the easiest build up.

Now let's cross out another one of our cons since slow attack speed is not a big issue for us anymore..


Early Game FAQ

1. Why stats over Empower and Mighty Swing?

Mighty Swing is useless early game because you don't have enough damage for the cleave to be noticeable. So we can take that skill out. So lets compare Empower between Stats. Empower helps to last hit. That's pretty much it. Stats however, gives you more damage (which also helps to last hit), gives more HP, but best of all gives you increased mana pool so that you can spam more Shockwave. And spamming more shockwaves means better lane control.
So in conclusion: Stats>Empower>Mighty-Swing

We can now cross out our last con since mana early game wont be much of an issue now

2. Why not get Perseverance instead of bottle? It gives HP/MP regen and upgrades to Battlefury later on..

Bottle costs 600 gold whereas Perseverance costs 1800 gold. Both have the same benefits, but bottle is much much cheaper and also allows you better lane control with runes. And you cannot afford to waste money since you need your dagger asap!


3. What about Arcane Ring? Can that be an alternate item to Bottle?

Same answer as the above question. Plus the burst mana heal is overkill. Shockwave costs only 90 mana!!


End of Early Game Strategy!

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243 By mawhpawh 2011-06-17

Uhm, look at the date this was made.

242 By Re4matik 2011-06-17

Not even one mention to skewer? WTF?
IMO wave and skewer lvl-ed first, persev then rush bf ->farm->hyperstone and then dagger when you are arount lvl 16. after dagger get lifesteal or bkb or both.
Skewer replaces the need of dager earlygame. They will not be pushing all 5 that early and catching just 2 or 3 enemys can be done easy with his skewer charge.
wave - skewer - ulti - autoatk - wave

241 By ka_ka_kah 2011-05-16

PT (strength)
Assault Cuirass

240 By Pro-con 2011-03-19

Tuskarr needs to be added too :D

239 By kafatanfare9 2011-03-10

Good job ! But you could add Nevermore to friends. They'll work glorious. ;)

238 By Bribe 2011-01-08

I still think it is a core. Skewer has some travel time, which could be enough for enemies to seperate, or just warn that Lina to use Blink dagger hell out of there. On the other hand, he is now one hell of a ganker, and can also make some nice early kills on Mid. Tried this: On lvl 4 i made an opening so Pudge can hook me, he did and i skewered him back a bit, then waved him and got the kill :) Can be used agaisnt anyone, as 2 nukes, and a slow is always good.

237 By Practice 2011-01-08

With the addition of skewer, blink dagger is a lot less prioritized than before, so probably better off farming void stone earlier than dagger. Not saying that dagger is useless, but it is less practical in the early game compared to before.

236 By Juggernaut23 2011-01-03

Good Job Mate XDDD

235 By yoon92015 2010-11-22

Nice Guide XDDDD

234 By furykiller 2010-10-23

fantastic strat just got 7/0/0 on 2v2

233 By <<suEy>> 2010-10-08

.well..dis is a good magnus strategy..i nver thought magnus is as much of a use..the only use i make of magnus is

232 By <<suEy>> 2010-10-08

.well..dis is a good magnus strategy..i nver thought magnus is as much of a use..the only use i make of magnus is

231 By <<suEy>> 2010-10-08

.well..dis is a good magnus strategy..i nver thought magnus is as much of a use..the only use i make of magnus is

230 By venanciomike 2010-10-07

Excellent strategy, although is outdated it's enough to understand how to use Magnus wisely.

229 By vacrix 2010-10-04

mighty swing got nerfed and combined into empower (which also got nerfed). IMO this is a lot more efficient. Also, skewer makes for good chasing and better positioning for ulti. also can be used for running away. The new Magnus is far more versatile, much to my delight

228 By daylyn979 2010-09-09

mighty swing no longer exists check his skilld for the new maps

227 By winner47 2010-08-15

Perhaps the best guide i have read.... went 26-4-15... this is without a doubt beyond excellence great work once again keep it up ! 10/0

226 By vnnss 2010-08-08

couldnt you have used the slewer + RP combo? wouldnt skewer deal damage to the hero while u can use reverse polarity to stun? even if the hero runs away after you use skewer you would still have your kelen to chase, just putting out options! good guide through and through

225 By jamez_crizalliz 2010-08-06

needs some update on the skills..

224 By keexko 2010-08-04

Does it work if you chain together the blink and Magna's ulti? If this does work then you wouldn't have to worry about getting stunned after blinking in.