Many Dota 2 players love playing as carry, or Position 1, for various reasons.
For one, carry heroes get most of the spotlight because at the end of the game. They typically have the highest net worth and kills in a team.
Also, their responsibilities are straightforward: they have priority in farming, must become as strong as possible, and should carry their team to victory.
Still, playing the safe lane is easier said than done.
Carry players need to have a clear understanding of farming efficiently, match timings, power spikes, and right itemization, to name a few. Even though it can be difficult to play Pos 1, it helps to know who the best carry heroes in Dota 2 are.
We’ll break down those heroes below.
The Best Carry Heroes
Now that you have learned how to be one of the best carries in Dota 2, I will show now the heroes that are well-suited for the safe lane.
For Novice Players
One of the most contested strength heroes, Wraith King is a fantastic choice for Pos 1 players who do not have enough experience. His skills are straightforward, and even just a few items can be enough to enable him as a carry. The skeleton king’s basic kit already covers everything you want from a carry hero.
His high strength stat gives him innate survivability. Couple that with his abilities Vampiric Spirit and Reincarnation, it will take a lot of time and resources for opposing teams to kill Wraith King. Moreover, he can disable foes with Wraithfire Blast, which can stun enemies for up to 2.7 seconds.
WK is also efficient at completing game objectives. He can pressure towers and clear creep waves because he can summon skeletons and due to his third ability Mortal Strike.
Juggernaut or Yurnero is one of the best carry heroes in Dota 2 because of his versatility and ability to sustain even when he is alone. Additionally, it does not take much to lane decently with this hero, and he can scale into the late game well.
His primary asset is his capability of making himself immune from spells, disables, and debuffs because of his Blade Fury. He can sustain in lanes and fights due to his Healing Ward, which can also provide health regen bonus to nearby ally heroes.
Juggernaut can potentially dish out a considerable level of damage, thanks to his skills Blade Dance and Omnislash.
One of the hero’s weaknesses is his low base strength and intelligence stats, which gives him relatively little health and mana pools. It is important then to equip Juggernaut with stat-boosting items, especially during the late game.
For Midlevel Players
A late-game favorite, Spectre is one of the most favorite hard carries of many Dota 2 players. Once she gets the right items, she becomes almost unkillable, allowing her to deal tons of damage to enemy heroes during battles.
Her skillset is a bit simple, with two of them being passive abilities. But do not get it wrong, these abilities are part of the reasons why she can be an especially strong carry. Desolate lets her inflict pure damage to opponents, and Dispersion reflects a good amount of damage from enemies.
Spectre’s first skill, Spectral Dagger, can slow opposing heroes or serve as an escape mechanism when she is low on health. And her ultimate is probably one of the best in the entire game. Haunt makes her a global threat, letting her join fights anywhere on the map.
Terrorblade is a favorite among professional carry players for good reason. To start, he has a powerful base armor, relatively high base damage, and decent mobility.
The downside is that the Demon Marauder is pretty squishy because of his low HP pool. But this can be negated by most of his abilities, including Reflection and Conjure Image, which allow him to bring forth illusions and more bodies to a team fight. Terrorblade’s ultimate Sunder is also OP because it exchanges the percentage of his remaining health with that of his target.
But the agility hero has an even more potent spell. Metamorphosis transforms Terrorblade from a melee to a ranged hero and grants attack damage bonus. When timed correctly, meta can turn the tides of the game.
Flexibility is Morphling’s strongest suit, and a reason why he is considered by many as one of the best carries in Dota 2. He can easily kill squishy targets and take down towers because of his high attack damage and abilities that deal heavy amounts of damage.
However, Morphling can be quite difficult to play. One reason is that you need to have a deep understanding of when to increase his strength or agility. It can be common to see Morphling getting burst down in a matter of seconds if he has very low strength.
In addition, his ultimate Morph allows him to change his form to match the targeted unit, gaining its basic skills. This means that great Morphling users have already memorized every Dota 2 hero’s abilities.
To use Troll Warlord, you have to be comfortable quickly switching between melee and ranged attacks. That is because while Jah’rakal is a ranged hero by default, upgrading his Berserker’s Rage skill gives him the ability to change his attacks to melee and vice-versa.
The advantage of transforming him into a melee hero is that it provides extra movement speed, armor, and base attack time. It also grants Troll the chance to root the target it is attacking, preventing it from moving or successfully casting mobility spells.
His third skill Fervor increases his attack speed with each continuous blow on a single target. This can allow him to beat any enemy hero, particularly enemy cores, in a one-on-one situation. He can even sneak a kill on Roshan in the early game.
Troll’s ultimate Battle Trance basically gives him a second life and increases his survivability in team fights.
Roles of the Carry Hero
It’s important to have a thorough grasp of the roles or purposes of the safe lane player.
In most cases, a Pos 1 player has to assume the role of a hard carry. This means that he or she has to farm as efficiently as possible so as to acquire the right items and peak at the perfect time in the match.
Hard carries should also scale into the late game. With maximum skill levels and the appropriate itemization, they can deal extremely high damage output to enemy heroes and buildings. Then in team fights, the hard carry’s teammates have to enable or support it.
But in some cases, the role of the Pos 1 can be inverted. Rather than having four heroes support it, it can enable its teammates instead. A famous example of this was two-time The International (TI) winner OG’s IO carry strat in 2019.
IO is one of the best support heroes in Dota 2. But OG surprised everyone by placing Wisp in the safe lane. It worked as the squad won all six games it employed the strategy, eventually capturing the Aegis in TI 9.
Using the carry hero in this role is quite difficult, though. It requires an excellent draft and great synergy among teammates.
Things You Need
Here, we will talk about the characteristics that make a terrific carry player. Remember that just because you are using any of the best Dota 2 carry heroes, it is not necessarily set that you can lead your team to victory. Playing this position requires the following qualities.
Efficient Farming Skills
Because the carry hero is dependent on quickly gaining levels and gold, he has to be able to learn how to last hit well. In most instances, the Pos 1 hero will be matched up against the opposing offlane hero. And the best offlaners in Dota 2 are adept in disrupting the enemy carry’s farm.
Thus, it is essential to be one step ahead of the other team when getting kills and gold. At the end of the match, the carry should have the highest CS (creep score, or the amount of last hits and denies) and net worth.
Knows When to Farm or Fight
Similar to the previous quality, carries must have a good understanding of what to do at any point in time in the match.
During the early game, the Pos 1 just have to focus on farming. It should avoid pushing during this phase to avoid leaving itself vulnerable to ganks or ambushes. Actively looking for kills should not be prioritized either because a simple misstep can lead to death.
Knowing when to farm or fight usually depends on the hero being used. For instance, if you are playing Anti-Mage or Spectre, it is essential to prioritize farming because you need the right items before you are ready for team fights.
On the other hand, faster-paced heroes like Gyrocopter and Juggernaut can hunt for kills or join ganks earlier due to their high damage output and survivability.
Good Communication Skills
Being able to communicate with your teammates well is a sign of being an effective carry. This is because you have to coordinate with your squad properly and let them know that your items or skills are already online or off their cooldowns.
Of course, communication skills are not necessary in team fights alone. These are also helpful during the initial stages of the game, especially when you need your supports to back you up or give you regen items.
Lastly, playing the safe lane requires a lot of patience. Those who are not that experienced in Dota 2 yet often have the tendency to go head-first in battles, push waves prematurely, or go into the fog without vision.
Unless the carry is the initiator itself, it must wait for teammates to set up team fights. This way, the Pos 1 can deal a heavy amount of damage to the enemy lines. One wrong move and the opposing team can lock up the carry with chain stuns or burst it down from 100 to 0 real quick.
There are other great carry heroes you can select from, such as Gyrocopter, Sven, and even IO. What matters is that it synergizes well with your team. It is part of what makes Dota 2 so hard, yet fun.
Just make sure that when you play the safe lane, focus on your farm early and learn how to level up fast. Then once your abilities and items are online, you can start joining team fights and going for objectives.