The Static Differences
Everyone has an understanding of the basics of the map, we have a sentinel base, a scourge base, a Roshan Area, two jungles (the big ones) and two forests (the small ones). Everyone know that we have three kinds of creeps: player allied (Treants, Ghouls etcetera), neutral creeps as well as ancients creeps (including Roshan too). What this section is about is how the overall map is different, many knows that Roshan is an abnormality which gives an advantage to the scourge side, but not many people know that the mid creeps are favouring the sentinel side or that you can triple pull in the sentinel jungle.
Mid lane, and its relations to the rune spots and ganks.
To the solo mid hero, rune-control is very important and it is not difficult to see that the two sides are unsymmetrical.
We can see that the distance from the towers offers scourge a lot of advantage, and although they have a bit longer to the top rune, the sentinel hero has to go through a curve, meaning that the distance will be almost the same; meaning that the scourge has a distance advantage in a possible rune-race.
Furthermore, the mid lane is usually ganked a lot, as it is in the middle of the map (hence the name), this is where the sentinel lane has its powers. While as the scourge side can be easily ganked from both sides, a gank on the sentinel mid is usually a lot more difficult. The way to the mid lane from bot is usually heavily warded and can be seen as impenetrable, while as the way from the top lane is guarded by a curve that gives the sentinel mid a huge sight advantage at day. This sight advantage is even more enhanced by the fact that while scourge only has one pile of trees to juke in, the sentinel has two.
Probably the difference which has the most impact on the game, the Roshan zone is positioned on the scourge side of the map, and you can activate the scourge secret shop from the area. Being placed on the scourge side of the map, near the bot lane, means that scourge has access to the Roshan Zone through three towers (mid tier one, bot tier one and bot tier two), while sentinel only have from one (mid tier one tower). This means, that scourge is only in need of one ward, while as sentinel is in need of two wards to be able to see any gank attempt (granting that neither teams has lost any of the important towers).
This difference gives the scourge team a huge advantage, as even after a won team-fight, the sentinel team has to be careful, as a (buyback-) teleporting scourge team can easily backstab them.
Tower positions, and their immediate surroundings
There is two factors that plays a role here: The environment near the towers and the distance between the towers. Some specific details surrounding the mid towers has already been covered, so will be skipping those. There is one more main factor though, which is the scourge level one top tower and the sentinel bot level one tower.
These are known as the safest places early game (outside of your base) but there are some obvious reasons. At the scourge tower, we have a intricate network above the tower, that allows you to run around in a circle with a couple of hiding spots connected; one of the best places to escape from a single hero. Besides this, the scourge side got a couple of hiding spots throughout the patch of trees below the tower, allowing a greater flexibility when choosing the hide-out.
In comparison, the sentinel tower does not offer the top patch of trees to juke to, but do offer a more extensive network of paths below the tower, allowing you to escape a ganking squad, or at least delay them until help arrives.
In addition to the environment, the two teams has a difference in distance between the towers which is due to the enlargement of the scourge base (referring to the picture relating to the section "Mid lane, and its relations to the rune spots and ganks"). This puts a greater pressure on the sentinel team as possible teleport support is now farther away, as well as the decreased distance between the towers allows for a greater chance for the scourge creeps to be below the towers attack range, making pushing a bit harder.
In particular, the tier two mid towers has an intricate difference too, as the positioning of the scourge tower is off, resulting in the ability to gank toward the scourge tower from both the forest and jungle, while you can only gank toward the sentinel from the jungle.
This section is including all the creep-relating differences in the map, including neutrals, the behaviour of creeps on lane, and the specific differences between the Ghouls and Treants.
Ghouls and TreantsAlthough these two units are alike in almost every case, there is one small difference; Treants have a greater base than the ghouls, due to the greater unit size they have. This in combination with the Treants coming from the lower left corner results in Ghouls being able to 'hide' behind the Treants, making them a lot harder to hit.
Pulling creepsThe majority of the DotA community know that both teams can pull one main camp. The scourge are then able to pull a second camp diagonally (is usable by the sentinel horizontally too) while as the sentinel are able to double, and even triple, pull with the use of tangoes or quelling blade. This does put the sentinel jungler in a dangerous position however, as the second creep camp is located fairly near the scourge tier one bot tower.
Although the jungling aspect is close to extinct at the moment, it is still worth mentioning, as the two jungles differentiate greatly.
The creep-camps in the scourge jungle are positioned with a lot of distance among them, but in such a way that you are able to circle among them all, so not to waste valuable time; and in the later stage of the game, this allows you to end up at your own base, making it a safe jungle if pressured.
What is probably the most known feature of the sentinel jungle however, is the 'magic bush' which are able to block two camps and thus nullifying any jungling hero.
But while the jungles are important, we must not neglect the forests, containing some of the most powerful units in the game. Here we can yet again see a difference between the sentinel and the scourge side, as while the sentinel ancient camp are facing toward the middle of the map, and are located in a rather non-travelled part; the scourge ancient camp is facing the scourge secret shop, with easy access to this as well as the Roshan Zone; making it a lot more difficult for sentinel to farm on scourge ancients than scourge on sentinel ancients if the game are even, but easier for sentinel to farm on sentinel ancients than scourge on scourge ancients if they are losing map-advantage.
Note: Other camps are pull-able with accurate timing and specific creeps, but as this is never done, this will not be mentioned here.
Mid lane in particular
Creeps vs BuildingsWhat buildings the creeps are going to attack when entering the base, is yet another small difference that can have a huge impact on the game. The following information is gotten by watching the creeps entering the base unobstructed and with no heroes on the map, and might differ in a game due to small differences.
|Sentinel Creeps||Scourge Creeps|
|Top||All creeps are attacking melee rax||All creeps are attacking melee rax.|
|Mid||Melee creeps are attacking melee rax; ranged creeps are attacking ranged rax. There is a possibility of melee creeps attacking right Ziggurat; ranged creeps attacking left Ziggurat.||Melee creeps are attacking the ranged rax; ranged creeps are attacking Moon Well.|
|Bottom||Melee creeps are attacking the ranged rax; all ranged creeps are attacking the Ziggurat. There is a possibility of melee creeps attacking Ziggurat.||All creeps are attacking the ranged rax.|
Looking at the table above, one can easily see some differences, as the sentinel creeps has a tendency to attack ziggurats rather than the rax. This means that scourge can be more comfortable leaving their base open for creeps to enter, as it would take a greater amount of time for them to destroy the important melee rax.
This is somewhat countered though, as the scourge creeps has a disadvantage in mid, almost neglecting the melee rax.
For the 'lolz'This last section is about those informations that really do not have any game-play impact on the game, but is nevertheless just fun to know.
- The World Tree (compared to The Frozen Throne) are closer to fountain, which makes it easier for you to pull enemy creeps to fountain and a relatively quicker heal path.
- Sent is more prone to being Glaive-raped by Moonrider since the building placements are closer to each other in the base.
- You are able to access the scourge base through the tree-line at the utter most right and top, while the sentinel base are closed with a cliff here.
- Mid scourge can access secret shop with a tango, giving you an opportunity for an OP Ring of Health / Void Stone purchase early game while saving a lot of time! How often does mid heroes go Ring of Health / Void Stone you ask? Doesn’t matter…
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