Deny Festival: Na'Vi vs. M5

Posted by Bruno "shostakovich" Tomaz at 04 October 2011 13:12

Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to Techlabs Cup Grand Finals, where Na'Vi and M5 meet once again. Both teams are different however: Na'Vi is playing without Artstyle, while M5 is now playing with Vigoss and PGG.

To add even more spice to this game, we'll see a Deny Festival going on: tower deny, hero deny, every kind of deny!

The Pick/Ban analysis
First Ban PhaseFirst Pick Phase

Invoker Ancient Apparition Prophet Holy Knight Broodmother Enchantress

Na'Vi takes out Invoker's lane dominance and the global presence of Prophet and Ancient Apparition out of the game, while M5 denies pushing by banning Chen, Broodmother and Enchantress.

Spectre Enigma Lich Shadow Demon Windrunner Vengeful Spirit

Na'Vi decided to use the first-pick to cover the late-game, picking Spectre and building the team around her. M5 quickly grabs Shadow Demon and Windrunner. With Shadow Demon, M5 already have the means to counter Spectre, as Soul Catcher makes her very fragile and Purge forces her to sit down for a while. M5's answers to Na'Vi's late-game choice with early and mid game potential. Na'Vi strengthens their turtle and late game even more by picking Enigma, adding Black Holes to their mix. With Lich they have a support hero with AoE damage, and Frost Armor to make Spectre even stronger. M5's answers against Enigma is Vengeful Spirit, one of the best support heroes around which can counter the Black Holes with Swap.

Second Ban PhaseSecond Pick Phase

Oblivion Beastmaster Faerie Dragon Batrider

By taking out Pugna, Na'Vi is once again banning a lane dominant hero. Beastmaster is bannued due to the combination of vision and a long-rage ultimate that goes through BKB, which threatens Enigma and Spectre. M5 takes out two strong solo-mid options from the pool, Puck and Batrider

Venomancer Clockwerk Goblin Priestess of the Moon Keeper of the Light

Na'Vi picks Venomancer, adding even more AoE damage to their team and granting the ability to use the Plague Wards to protect towers and delay incoming pushes. The combination of Poison Nova and Chain Frost is really strong, and if you add a Black Hole and a haunting Spectre to the mix, you have a very powerful team-fight setup. With Clockwerk Goblin, Na'Vi has someone to protect Enigma, as he can just initiate and isolate the threat. On M5's side, they pick heroes that furthers their early and mid game potential: Mirana and Keeper of the Light. Mirana is very strong at ganking and deals a lot of damage in the early and mid game. Keeper of the Light adds pushing power, mobility and mana to the team.

Critical Hero

Keeper of the Light

As I see it, Keeper of the Light is the Critical Hero in this match. Being stronger early and mid game, but not late game, M5 needs to convert successful ganks and team-fights into pushes. Keeper of the Light can keep the mana pool high with Chakra Magic, heal his allies with Mekansm and erase the enemy creep waves with Illuminate, allowing the team to stay in the battle instead of returning to the fountain, denying time for Na'Vi to build their Spectre. It's all about Keeper of the Light surviving the clashes and transforming it into mortal pushes.


Na'Vi is clearly going for a late game turtle strategy, with the idea of playing defensively until Spectre gets her Radiance. They will be more than happy to get into big team-fights, as Power Cogs and Black Hole can set up for brutal Frost Novas, not to mention Poison Nova and Haunt. Hero exchanges will work in favor of Na'Vi, because less heroes in the field means more space and safety for Spectre to farm. M5's goal is to dominate the early and mid game. They can't give Na'Vi time, because they don't have the heroes to be stronger in the late game. They need to run sucessful ganks to have hero majority in the field and convert it into pushes. Big team-fights and exchanges won't work in favor of M5, but smaller skirmishes will allow them to come out into situations like 5v4 or 4v3, being able to push and win.

Ukraine Na'Vi Russia Moscow5

Invoker Ancient Apparition Prophet

Holy Knight Broodmother Enchantress

Oblivion Beastmaster

Faerie Dragon Batrider



Shadow Demon Windrunner

Enigma Lich

Vengeful Spirit

Venomancer Clockwerk Goblin

Priestess of the Moon Keeper of the Light

Sentinel Lich NaVi.AA (Top) Spectre XBOCT1113 (Top) Venomancer Na`Vi-_-Dendi (Mid) Enigma NaVi.PIOS (Jungle) Clockwerk Goblin NaVi.Lgh7fHvN (Bot) Scourge Shadow Demon M5.plzgogame (Top) Vengeful Spirit M5.Dread (Top) Windrunner Moscow5.vigoss (Mid) Priestess of the Moon M5.G (Bot) Keeper of the Light MoscowFive.NS (Bot)
The Game
Laning Analysis

Na'Vi send Spectre and Lich to the top lane. Even if the long lane isn't the safest lane, Spectre would face a world of harass in the bottom lane, which most likely was the plan for M5. Now, instead of fighting Mirana, Vengeful Spirit and Keeper of the Light, they only need to worry about Shadow Demon. Also, Na'Vi has wards in the jungle to prevent creep pulls. In the mid lane, Venomancer and Windrunner will fight it out. The early levels will allow Venomancer to have his Plague Wards really soon. At the bottom lane, M5 have Vengeful Spirit, Mirana and Keeper of the Light fighting against Clockwerk. However, when M5 realizes Spectre is in the top lane, Vengeful Spirit starts roaming.

Important events

First blood happens around the 1:40 minute mark, where Shadow Demon is joined by Vengeful Spirit at the top lane and kills Lich, not allowing Spectre to free farm. At 3:55, Vengeful Spirit goes mid with Smoke of Deceit to gank Venomancer, which runs into the trees and blocks the path with a Plague Ward in an attempt to survive. Venomancer is finished by a Powershot, and the Deny Festival begins here: while Windrunner is able to run for safety, Vengeful Spirit is almost dead and being chased by Enigma. Without strength to fight back and not wanting Enigma to favour her death, Vengeful Spirit dives into the woods and dies by the hand of an Enraged Wildkin. Venomancer's death enables a gank on the bottom lane. At 5:10, Windrunner goes bottom and joins Mirana and Keeper of the Light at killing Clockwerk Goblin, taking the tower afterwards. M5 gets another kill at 6:40, where Shadow Demon and Mirana kill Lich. The score is 0-4 in favor of M5 and they have tower advantage, but Spectre has not died once and Na'Vi isn't behind on XP. Around 7:00, a disaster hits Na'Vi. Enigma and Spectre try to kill Shadow Demon with Black Hole, but they don't have enough damage to kill him, and no hero comes in time to support them. This allows M5 to move their heroes top and kills Spectre, Lich, Enigma and takes the top tower. M5 is now ahead in levels; with the first bottom tower down, they can ward the jungle and dominate the map, not giving a breath space to Na'Vi. Around 9:00, Venomancer plants several Plague Wards in the mid lane in order to protect the towers. Being immune to magic damage, Keeper of the Light can't do anything to push. However, this doesn't keep M5 from attacking: they dive the tower to kill Venomancer and clear the creep wave. Clockwerk Goblin tries to do something there, but ends up overwhelmed by M5 heroes. Enigma also ends up getting killed by Windrunner, and the mid tower goes down, giving M5 an even bigger tower advantage and tons of map dominance. And the Deny Festival continues: Shadow Demon and Mirana are afflicted with Poison Gale and Poison Nova and are on the verge of dying. Instead of dying by the hands of the enemy, they decide it's better to die by the hand of their allies, and so it happens, with Shadow Demon and Mirana killimg themselves in a shakespearean way.

If they can't live together, they'll die together
Mid game

Right now, M5 is ahead. They need to continue transforming ganks into pushes in order to increase the pressure to have a chance at destroying Na'Vi's barracks. After killing Clockwerk Goblin in bottom lane at 11:37, M5 goes mid in order to push. Vengeful Spirit tries to initiate a clash with Swap, but there's no follow up by her allies. She's chased down by Venomancer and Spectre. Windrunner runs, hoping to save Vengeful Spirit, but it's too late. Knowing that dying by the hands of the enemy will bring dishonor to Vengeful Spirit, Windrunner shoots her arrow and kills Vengeful Spirit, denying Spectre the kill, adding another chapter to our Deny Festival. Thanks to a misshook by Clockwerk Goblin, Windrunner is able to get revenge by killing Enigma. However, despite the show, the tower is still up, which is really bad for M5's pretentions of winning this game.

Admit it, you want to make a Vigoss joke right now

Around 14:00, M5 organizes a split push at the top and bottom lane. Windrunner and Shadow Demon goes bottom to harass Spectre, but are repelled by Enigma. Na'Vi really gets an opportunity to countergank here, but Clockwerk Goblin misses the hook. Meanwhile, Mirana, Vengeful Spirit and Keeper of the Light are pressuring the tower. Enigma and Clockwerk moves quickly to top lane to help relieve the pressure, and Na'Vi is able to kill Mirana and Vengeful Spirit, not allowing M5 to destroy the towers. By doing this, Na'Vi is putting pressure on M5's shoulders, because Spectre will eventually get her Radiance and become really strong. M5 can't afford to lose time here, but Windrunner and Keeper of the Light also dies, making them lose even more time. Right now, M5 is not playing the Gank-into-Push strategy they must. At the same time, Na'Vi is playing very safely, never advancing too much. M5 gets a chance of pushing at 17:19, where an invisible Mirana finds and arrows Enigma. However, The push is denied by Venomancer's Plague Wards. Na'Vi finds a chance to initiate with Hook and Haunt. The fight ends pretty badly for M5, which loses three heroes in the clash, but we see yet another act of our Deny Festival: Shadow Demon goes David Copperfield and makes an entire Chain Frost disappear in front of everyone. The game is getting very dangerous for M5 as they're getting behind on levels, while Spectre is only getting stronger.


At 20:45, Roshan is killed by M5. Now they have another opportunity to push. They go for a gank on Spectre. She tries to escape from with Haunt, but is caught by Disruption and Soul Catcher. However, M5 doesn't manage to kill Spectre (with Mirana and Windrunner both missing the arrows). A huge Chain Frost makes Shadow Demon lose the Aegis, and Windunner also dies at the hands of Spectre. M5 is in a lot of trouble because they're not being able to break Na'Vi's defenses. Around 23:00, another push from M5 gets denied by Na'Vi, and then a disaster hits the Russians: Keeper of the Light is hooked by Clockwerk Goblin in the middle of a Recall, which results into locking himself and Shadow Demon inside the Power Cogs. This allows Na'Vi to kill both heroes and destroy the mid tower. Around 25:00, Vengeful Spirit and Mirana kills Lich, enabling a split push. The second bottom tower is destroyed At the same time, Spectre got her Sacred Relic, and is very close to her Radiance. At 28:45, M5 finally destroys the last of the second tier towers at mid, and finally has access to Na'Vi's base. However, it might be too late, because Spectre is very close to her Radiance. At the subsequent fight, four M5 heroes perish and Spectre finishes her Radiance. And the game goes downhill for M5, because they don't have the heroes or the advantage to deal with Spectre.


M5 had the early game of their dreams. Looking at the lineups, we could expect them to get some lead at the early game, but the lead they had was gigantic, 1-13 at the early game. However, this lead wasn't converted into a win mostly because M5 couldn't take the second towers quickly. We saw some over-aggression from the Russians, like using Swap to initiate a team-fight but not having the perfect follow-up, resulting in a situation where both teams just exchange heroes, which was favorable for Na'Vi as it gave them time to set Spectre up. Not being able to destroy the towers, they couldn't abuse Keeper of the Light's features, M5's advantage disappeared, and Spectre got too strong for them to handle.



Team rankings