Heroes of Newerth Beginner's Guide

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  1. Tyrael

    Tyrael Ready Yourself

    Apr 11, 2009
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    Heroes of Newerth Beginner's Guide
    Heroes of Newerth :: Beginner's Guide :: Chapter One, Introduction

    Hello, and welcome to the Heroes of Newerth beginner's guide! This guide is intended for new members, but any member can benefit from it! In this guide, very rudimentary concepts, techniques, and general knowledge are given to you as a tool to be used to play the game as freely as you wish!

    One notable aspect is that Heroes of Newerth (after this be referred to as HoN) is an Elitist game, and players who are very good will usually treat new players (and even hardened, old players) badly, so the number one tip is to not let any comments affect your gameplay.

    This is common in many games though; many will protest how addictive and fun HoN is once use to its nature. Now let's continue!

    Heroes of Newerth :: Beginner's Guide :: Chapter 2, Laning

    In the standard HoN map there are three lanes for you to choose one to begin your game. Usually there will be two lanes with two heroes, and an additional lane with a solo hero. The most common lane for soloing is the middle lane as it is close to the runes (discussed later). The top and bottom lanes have locations to shop for the basics so it would be unnecessary to return to base to get them. There are also two shops that show up as white dots on your map.

    Your mission is to go to your lane and battle. Discuss the choice of whom is going down which lane, and make sure you don't go down a lane where two of your team mates are or there will be problems. Too many players in a lane leads to less experience and two weakened lanes.

    Once you make it to your lane you first need to remember to stay alive. Both the Legion and the Hellbourne have three rows of towers; if you are in trouble, run to your tower. Early on your towers are safe-havens, but further in and they will not protect you so well. When someone dies, their opponents gain experience and gold, and you lose gold and time.

    Second to staying alive is your priority to get more gold and buy more items that will, in turn, make you more powerful. You gain experience by being close by as enemy creeps and heroes die. You gain gold for administering the killing blow. Take note to time your attack so that you may deliver the last hit, and earn gold.

    As the game encourages aggressive gameplay the other players will play aggressively. A good strategy is to always play the defence, as you learn the most about the game that way (not to mention you live longer!). Your minimap can be your best friend, try to check it often to see if an opponent is coming to kill you. Notice 'mia', 'gone', or 'missing' calls as these mean the opposing heroes are unaccounted for and they could gang up on you, or 'gank' you.

    Heroes of Newerth :: Beginner’s Guide :: Chapter 3, Ganking

    A cornerstone of winning games of HoN is 'ganking'. It is ganging up on an opponent and killing them. It could also mean leaving your lane to attack another lane, or an opponent in the neutrals. Any unexpected kill in HoN is a gank.

    There are two angles to see a gank from; you either achieve the gank, or you get ganked. Often you will find yourself being ganked, so it is important to know what your opponent is doing as much as you can. You cannot keep tabs all the time so it is best to call 'missing', 'mia', or 'gone' when an opponent leaves your lane, giving a heads-up to your team mates about a possible enemy gank. If you ever decide to pull off a gank, make sure you tell your team mates ahead of time. A hero with stuns or disables makes a gank much much easier. If they run to the tower, decide if you can kill them quickly because the tower will to you.

    Usually the ganking starts six minutes in and persists throughout the rest of the game, but after twenty, or thirty minutes players start grouping up in one lane with five heroes in a lane. But remember, to leave your lane is to submit possible gold and experience.

    Heroes of Newerth :: Beginner’s Guide :: Chapter 4, Runes

    Runes are temporary magical buffs that your hero can pick up from the ground. Though not always obvious to new players, runes play an important role in your team’s success, or failure. Actively pursuing the runes not only gives you the buffs, but also prevents your enemies from getting them.

    These two spots on the map are heavily traversed. Its very common to get ganked or to gank in these spots as players are seeking runes, which is why it is important to pay attention to your minimap. If you are worried the enemy team is at the runes, bring yours. The runes spawn randomly every two minutes in one of the two places below, beginning at 0:00 game time (After the horn). There will never be more than 1 rune in a rune spawn location.

    Haste: Your hero will move at maximum movement speed for 30 seconds, as well as being immune to slowing effects.

    Double Damage: Your hero’s attack damage will be doubled for 45 seconds (not spells or ability damage only your auto attack).

    Regeneration: Your hero will regenerate to maximum health and mana. The regeneration rate is 6% health per second and 10% mana per second. Regeneration ends when health and mana are full, you take damage, or 30 seconds expires.

    Illusion: Two illusions of your hero are created next to it. Illusions deal 1/3 damage and take 3 times normal damage. Illusions last for 75 seconds.

    Invisibility: Your hero becomes invisible for 1 minute. Invisibility ends if you attack. Damage taken will NOT end invisibility.

    Runes can be attacked and destroyed.
    Rune buffs can be dispelled with Nullfire Blade’s active ability.
    Runes can be saved for two minutes in an empty bottle. After the rune is used or the timer runs out, your bottle will be full again.

    Heroes of Newerth :: Beginner’s Guide :: Chapter Five, Beginner Heroes, Starter Heroes, Easy Heroes
    A lot of people ask me what the easiest, or some of the easiest heroes to play are when they are new to Heroes of Newerth. I am going to list a few of what I think are the easiest heroes to pick up and play HoN effectively are. This is by no means a complete list and is meant only to be helpful, though we would love to hear your opinions on easy heroes.


    Pyromancer is easy to play for beginners because he has huge nukes (high damage point and click spells) and stuns. He tends to get a lot of kills and that not only makes him easy, but fun for beginners. The most difficult aspect of playing Pyromancer is that you have to land the stun (Dragonfire) to be truly successful with him. A lot of people shy away from him because he isn’t the strongest hero ever once the carry heroes start to shine 20 or so minutes in (easy mode) but hes my top pick for beginners.


    Thunderbringer is a great hero for new players for the same reasons that Pyromancer is, minus the stuns. He has just as many 'nukes' though, and his ultimate, Lightning Storm, hits all enemy heroes on the map, making him ideal for finding enemies, killing enemies that are running away at low health, and mayhem in team fights. He is easy to get kills with and easy to play, but again watch out for those carry heroes late game.

    Moon Queen

    Moon queen is great for new players because she is a bit of a hybrid. She has the intense “nukes†of INT heroes, but at the same time has the capacity to carry, meaning diverse choices for skill and item builds. If you are alone against someone in the river for instance, her ultimate Moon Finale is often a free kill, just hit R and follow them till they are dead. If they have any health left use another moon beam. Just be sure to level moon beam first, because the ultimate is dependent on that skill for damage.


    Accursed is super is, and the reason why is because he is really hard to kill! His ultimate, Flame Consumption, allows him to go invulnerable for a few seconds, and any damage he would normally take HEALS him. Plus, he has an ability called Fire Shield which puts a damage shield on him, and for the duration or until the shield is destroyed he takes no damage. Also, when the shield is destroyed it deals damage to all enemies around. Want to stay alive? Play Accursed.


    For a beginner, magmus is a godsend. He has alot of HP (being a strength hero) a stun, and a devastating ultimate. Stun, and use your ultimate, and if you don’t get stunned while casting you can bet on some kills will be coming your way. Easy to learn, easy to play, and great fun.

    Heroes of Newerth :: Beginner’s Guide :: Key Terms

    Below is a general description or meaning of common HoN jargon.

    Core terminology for Heroes of Newerth

    Creeps spawn every 30 seconds in every lane for both sides. They march recklessly towards the enemy base and fight any enemy creep “waves†on their way. Without hero intervention, creeps will almost indefinitely fight in the center of the lanes as spawns for both sides are equal. Creeps are the main source of gold and experience for heroes.

    When you die, you lose access to your hero for a certain amount of time based on your heroes level. At the end of the death timer your hero will respawn at your fountain.

    Experience is a number which represents, well, experience. You gain experience point by being in the proximity of an enemy creep or hero when they die.

    Each team has a fountain and it is where you will begin the game. While at the fountain your her will regenerate health and mana. Most of the items are bought at the fountain. The fountain will attack enemy heroes who come into it’s waters for heavy damage.

    Gold is the currency of the game, we use it to buy items. Gold can also be used to buy back in emergencies.
    You get gold by: Killing creeps or players.
    You lose gold when: You buy an item or you die.

    Kongor is a big monster generally killed by your entire team. When you kill him your entire team gets a gold bonus, the hero who lands the killing blow gets extra gold, and Kongor drops an item which grants its bearer an “extra lifeâ€. Basically, when its bearer dies, after a few seconds they respawn in the same spot. The death while wearing the shield doesn’t count as a death for xp, gold, or score, it simply didn’t happen for all intensive purposes.

    There are three “lanes†on the standard map. Creeps waves spawn and march down them to face eachother, and heroes fight alongside them. The entire game is centered around a tug of war kind of combat where the “lanes†are pushed closer to each team’s base, back and forth.

    You lose if the enemy team destroys your base.

    There are “neutral†creeps in the forests around the lanes. These creeps don’t do anything but sit where they are (indicated by circles on the map) and wait to be killed. They are stronger than creeps in the lanes and give more experience and gold, but you have to fight them without your allied creeps.

    Outposts are present in the top and bottom lanes and have many of the basic items that are available at your base. They are very useful and should be used whenever possible to stay in your lane longer.

    Runes will spawn every two minutes in one of two places on the map. The first one will spawn as soon as the game begins. Pick up the rune to gain the benefit.
    Double Damage Rune: Your hero will deal double damage for a short period.
    Invisibility Rune: Your hero will remain invisible for one minute.
    Illusion Rune: Your hero will create two exact copies of themselves for a limited time. The copies take extra damage and deal less damage
    Haste Rune: Your hero will move at maximum speed for a short time.
    Regeneration Rune: Your hero will quickly regenerate to max health and mana. If struck it will stop regenerating and you will lose the effect.

    Secret Shops
    There is a shop on both sides of the map labeled “secret shopâ€. You can clearly see where it is at from the beginning of the game so it is by no means “secretâ€. This shop has larger, more expensive items which are part of the more powerful recipes. You have to walk to them to buy the items.

    The game is won when either team destroys the enemy team’s base.

    Terms regularly used by players to describe events taking place in the game or otherwise.

    Players will sometimes print a single letter in chat, “bâ€. In this case it generally means they want the team to back off, get back to base, stop pushing. You get the idea.

    A backdoor is generally described as when a hero attacks a tower or building without the support of creeps. While frowned upon, it is common practice and most believe it not to be against the rules.

    Carry Hero
    A carry is generally considered an agility or strength hero who invests skill points and items directly into their auto attack rather than spells or items with spells. Most of the time a “carry†hero is weaker during the beginning of the game while the Int heroes reign, and they begin to “carry†their team towards the end of the game when they have their items.

    Feeder is a term adopted by players to describe a team mate who is consistently dying, which gives the killing enemy gold and experience. The player dying is essentially “feeding†the enemy’s power. It is generally derogatory in use, if someone is calling you a feeder they are probably blaming a loss on you.

    A gank is generally when enemy heroes from another lane come to your lane and team up to kill you, or vice versa. It is important to watch for these situations on the mini-map to avoid being caught off guard.

    Pushing is the act of attacking enemy creeps in a lane and moving forward each wave until you reach the enemy base, at which point you attempt to destroy towers and buildings.

    You may sometimes hear this being used within Heroes of Newerth to describe yourself or another player. For the most part its someone trying to insult another player’s ability, that is to call them a “scrubâ€. Generally it isn’t very nice, but that goes without saying.