No matches

Image by DreamHack

A new gameplay update recently made its way into Dota 2 in the form of patch 7.21. The patch came right after the Chongqing Major and was put to test immediately during the Stockholm Major (DreamLeague Season 11) qualifiers. About 10 days into 7.21, the qualifiers for the Stockholm Major are done and dusted and we have a new set of heroes in front of us… literally! The change in the meta has brought some fresh faces to the front while some of the old guard have managed to maintain their positions at the top. A total of 250 games were played across all regions and it brought out new picks and strats from the teams. There was a lot of diversity, with a total of 109 heroes being picked!

Most Picked

The top 15 hero picks for the Stockholm Major qualifiers looks something like this:

Most picked heroes of the Stockholm Major qualifiers (data taken from

A lot of new heroes can be seen top 15 for the Stockholm Major qualifiers. After a very long time, Dark Seer is a popular hero once again. he’s been gaining popularity since the advent of 7.20 and his return to professional Dota 2 is probably now complete. Earth Spirit is another hero with a comeback story. After being snubbed during the 2-1-2 meta of TI8, Earth Spirit is again one of the most sought out support. Good to see Sven in there as well, albeit more so in a support or offlane role. Lifestealer, who is being dubbed as one of the more broken carries of the 7.21 patch, has quickly gained popularity as well. Most of the other in the list began their rise from 7.20, but Lifestealer has been purely from the increased movement speed and armor he received in Dota 2 7.21. Tiny and Terrorblade are two heroes that have been consistently making the most picked list for quite a while now, and they aren’t doing too badly either. Hovering in there with a win rate of just above 50%, these two refuse to leave the spotlight.

Six heroes did not get picked in any region. Io is non-contender for now as it has been removed from Captain’s Mode for now. The others that were completely ignored were Ancient Apparition, Pudge, Riki, Silencer, Storm Spirit and Techies. Well, in any patch, there are bound to be some that are left behind.


Highest Win Rates (20 games or more)

Not every hero is suitable for every game. Certain heroes get picked once in a while, but when they do, there’s a high chance of winning. The 10 heroes with the highest win rate (20 games or more) in the Stockholm Major Qualifiers look like this:

Heroes with the highest win rates (20 games or more) in the Stockholm Major qualifiers (data taken from

There are some insane win rates in there, particularly the first four. Nyx Assasin, who got a sizable buff in 7.21 seems to be doing quite well for himself. Shadow Demon, Razor and Brewmaster aren’t too far behind, with the last two having about twice the number of games as the first two. 7.21 seems to have taken effect quickly and we already have a shift in power. Nyx Assasin has been off the radar for a while now and it will be nice to see him as a regular part of the meta.


Most Banned

With Io off CM, team mentalities have changed. The team with the second pick often had to ban the Io. Not anymore though. With Io gone, the top five most banned heroes include

  • Magnus
  • Elder Titan
  • Outworld Devourer
  • Tiny
  • Earth Spirit

Magnus is the new Io, with 138 bans in 250 games (Io would have had a lot more bans, but let’s not compare!). A position 4 Magnus that keeps Empowering cores and throws in the occasional RP is gaining a lot of popularity.


Team Stats (top teams from every region)

Every region seems to have its own favorite heroes. There are a total of six regions, and here, we take a look at the top teams (ones that made it through from the upper bracket) from every region in terms of how unique they were in their picks and what heroes were preferred by them,

Team stats for the top teams from the Stockholm Major qualifiers

The most played heroes for nearly all teams are different. The one who makes an appearance across the board is Earth Spirit (ES).


Unusual Hero Positions

In the qualifiers, quite a few heroes were played in positions not typical of them. If it works out, they might tend to stay there in the near future!

  1. Support Luna – Started by Team Secret in the Chongqing Major
  2. Position 3 or 4 Chaos Knight – The hero is quite strong now
  3. Mid Rubick – Started with the change in 7.20 and going strong
  4. Mid Dazzle – Similar story as Rubick
  5. Mid Shadow Demon – This accolade goes only to OG
  6. Sven position 1, 3, 4 or 5 – The Rogue Knight has become quite versatile and even though he isn’t deployed in the carry role too often, it is a once in a while occurrence (especially as he provides a natural counter to Chaos Knight)


Looking at all the stats from the Stockholm Major qualifiers, it seems that the revamp of heroes has already begun and it the upcoming tournaments like ESL Katowice and MDL Macau, scheduled to take place in February, promise to be crackers!


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