Ethreain, the Lich
In life, the frost-mage Ethreain (not yet a Lich) had used the threat of destructive ice to enslave entire kingdoms. His subjects, aided by a few desperate magicians, eventually grew bold enough to ambush him. Armed with enough charmed rope to bind him forever, they tied the frost mage to adamant weights and dropped him in a pool known chiefly for being bottomless. It wasn't. He only fell for a year or so before an outcrop snagged him. There he rested, dead but undecaying, until the geomancer Anhil thought to verify the legend of the supposedly bottomless Black Pool. Anhil's plumbline snarled with the ropes that bound the drowned magician, and up he hauled an unexpected prize. Thinking that by rendering the dead undead, he could question the Lich about the properties of the pool, he removed the bindings and commenced a simple rite of resurrection. Even the descendants of Ethreain's enemies were long forgotten by time, so there were none to warn Anhil against imprudence. But he learned the error of his judgement almost immediately, as Lich threw off the shackles and consumed him.
Affects: Enemy Units
Blasts the target enemy unit with damaging frost, dealing area damage and slowing movement and attack rates for a few seconds. The primary target takes the most damage.
Affects: Allied Units
Creates a shield around the target friendly unit, which adds armor and slows attacking units.
Affects: Allied Creeps
Sacrifices a friendly creep, converting a percentage of its current hit points into mana for Lich. Grants experience to allies within the area.
Affects: Enemy Units
Releases an orb of frost that bounces many times, slowing and damaging enemy units. The first target is mini-stunned.
Upgradeable by Aghanim's Scepter to increase the damage, cast range, and remove the bounce limit.
Almost universally considered the ultimate in frost magic, Ethreain's orb of frozen death strikes fear into those who dare stand against him.
Affects: Enemy Units
On attack, will slow the movement speed and attack speed of the enemy target.
|Attacks Apply 30% MS and AS slow||25||+35 Frost Armor Structure Armor|
|+120 Gold/Min||20||+150 Damage|
|-4s Frost Blast Cooldown||15||+125 Cast Range|
|+25 Movement Speed||10||+175 Health|
|Starting Items||Early Game||Mid Game||Late Game|
Drifting from battle to battle and sacrificing creeps to fuel his assaults, Lich is always ready to help his fellow heroes destroy their enemies with slowing frost. Should his foes be foolish enough to gather, his bouncing ultimate will ensure their demise.
Lich is a ranged support intelligence hero that is popular among beginner players.
Lich is most commonly used as a babysitter for a carry in the safe lane. However, he can be played as a solo mid or even a solo hard lane hero. The main reason for this is his Sacrifice ability is great for controlling the creep wave, as well as denying gold and exp against the enemy heroes, and his spammable nuke (Frost Blast) allows him to safely harass the opposing hero. However Lich does not have an escape skill, which is a big weakness for an off lane hero.
Frost Armor is usually leveled last, although you should consider investing in Frost Armor earlier if you find yourself in many early teamfights against melee physical damage dealers. The spell has a low mana cost and a short cooldown that gives allies an armor bonus as well as a slow in opponent's attack and movement speed should they attack that unit. When your mana pool is big enough in the late game, you can even put this spell on auto-cast.
As Lich, you often want to start out by leveling Sacrifice, which kills creeps of your own in exchange for mana. This gives you a great tool for keeping the creep line in place and it guarantees a healthy mana pool, allowing you to skimp on Clarities and saving that money. It also denies your opponent the chance of gaining money or XP by last hitting those creeps, which is particularly important against level dependent heroes and/or trilanes. Your second ability will be Frost Blast which deals damage and slows. This allows Lich to be active in ganks and helping allies escape from them. As you hit level 6, your ultimate Chain Frost becomes available. As a multi-target nuke, it makes Lich a great asset in teamfights. The blast jumps from enemy to enemy, including creeps, dealing damage along the way. When used properly - with as few creeps around to be affected - it's a great damage-dealing spell. Optimally, Chain Frost is casted onto a hero that is surrounded by other heroes. This guarantees the blast bounces from hero to hero, rather than skipping to a creep. For maximum effect, Chain Frost is used when the targets are in a confined area where dispersion is difficult. Examples include the Rosh pit or within a Kinetic Field or Chronosphere.
In most games, your role will be to protect your carry for most of the early game, while warding the map continuously. If you feel your carry is safe in lane by himself, you can start roaming to try and look for kills. In the mid and lategame teamfights, position yourself carefully as to not bring too much focus on yourself. Your main priority in fights is to cast a good ultimate, as well as your Mekansm if you have one.
You should almost always be buying the courier and/or a set of wards at the beginning of the game. Buy some basic health regen items such as Tangos and Healing Salves. You do not need any Clarities because of your third skill, Sacrifice. Any leftover gold should be spent on basic stats, such as Iron Branches or possibly a Gauntlets of Strength if you plan to build it into either a Drum of Endurance or an Urn of Shadows.
As Lich is relatively item-independent, focus on keeping the map warded. Upgrade the courier early. Boots of choice are usually Tranquil Boots, which gives you some health regen. Any leftover gold can be used to start building a Mekansm. If someone else is already building a Mekansm, consider other typical support items such as a Force Staff.
Tips & Tricks:
- When the opposing team has a Rubick, one point is often put in Frost Armor, to use immediately after Chain Frost lest the Rubick steals the latter.
- Frost Armor is a very effective spell to get when attempting an early Roshan kill as it slows his attack speed by 20%.
- Chain Frost's first projectile has a mini-stun and can cancel TPs or channeling spells. The ministun occurs upon casting, rather than when the projectile hits.
- Chain Frost's ministun goes through Black King Bar.
- As your ultimate costs a huge amount of mana, Pugna's Nether Ward will do an incredible amount of damage to you if not careful.
Luxury items include an Aghanims Scepter, which improves your ultimate as well as giving you a good amount of stats. Point Booster comes first in the order or purchase, followed by Ogre Club for the +190 health bonus. With the Scepter, Chain Frost's range increases from 750 to 850 and damage from 280 / 370 / 460 to 370 / 460 / 550.
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