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Dota 2: Witch Doctor Builds Guide

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In this article, we delve into the strategy of one of the best support heroes in the game, the Witch Doctor.

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About Witch Doctor

“De Doctor is In!”

- Witch Doctor

Zharvakko, better known as Witch Doctor, is a humanoid being of short stature and exotic appearance that brings African influences to both his design and his skills. Originally from the mountains of Arktura Island, he uses his magical powers to heal his allies and destroy his enemies. His primary attribute is Intelligence, and his abilities make him an excellent support or ganker.

Appearance and Attributes
Appearance and Attributes


Status and Skills

Being an intelligence character, Witch Doctor can attack from long range, bombarding enemy heroes while staying at a safe distance or hiding in the jungle.

Paralyzing Cask

You will use this skill to paralyze enemies, preferably heroes, and its effectiveness is greater depending on the number of enemies present and the level of this skill. It can hit the same unit multiple times, as long as a nearby unit has been hit.

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Voodoo Restoration

With this skill, you can regenerate your health and that of allied units, consuming an amount of mana per second while it is active. This one makes the Doctor very useful as a support hero, as he can not only bombard enemy heroes, hindering their advances in lane, but can also ensure that the Carry regenerates if they are low on health.

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One of the Doctor's most powerful abilities. With it, you will apply a curse to all enemy heroes present in the area of effect. This curse will deal a certain amount of damage per second and additional damage based on the difference between the enemy's current amount of health and the amount of life they had at the time they received the Maledict, inflicted every four seconds.

This skill is perfect for use as soon as combat begins, ensuring enemies hit suffer extra damage as they receive attack damage in combat. It is common to use Paralyzing Cask to stun enemies and make them easy targets for Maledict, but it can be used in reverse order, taking advantage of the damage caused by Paralyzing Cask.

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Death Ward

Doctor conjures a deadly totem that launches projectiles at nearby enemies, causing damage to targets hit, its conjuration lasts a maximum of 8 seconds. Death Ward has a 50% accuracy bonus.

This ability should be used after Maledict, thus ensuring the damage caused to enemies is significant and almost always resulting in some kills.

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Voodoo Switcheroo

This ability is only acquired through the use of Aghanim’s Shard. Witch Doctor temporarily transforms into a Death Ward with reduced attack speed and invulnerability during the time this skill is used.

Voodoo Switcheroo is very useful to be used in combat where enemies are very close to the Doctor, forcing them to choose between escaping the range of attacks to try to survive or staying and facing the consequences. You can even use it after casting Death Ward, if you are attacked by enemies, or are stunned by them during the casting.

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Witch Doctor Build

As a support hero, playing as a Witch Doctor, it is preferable to stay behind, launching your skills at enemies while the combat is happening or ganking an unsuspecting opponent. With this in mind, I will recommend the following build, built based on the current Dota Metagame and my personal experience with this hero.


Upgrading Talents and Skills

The build will be focused on maximizing the effects of Maledict. For this, you will need to acquire specific talents from the Talent Tree, in addition to strengthening the right skills at each level of your hero. Paralyzing Cask and Maledict will be the focus in the first few levels, before reaching level 6 and the Doctor's ultimate skill.

Talent Tree
Talent Tree

Suggestion on Which Skill to Upgrade at Each Level
Suggestion on Which Skill to Upgrade at Each Level

Basic Items

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Regenerates life by consuming a jungle tree, or grants extra regeneration if consumed a tree generated with Ironwood Branch.

Ironwood Branch can be used to plant a tree in the ground and is one of the items used to craft Magic Wand.

Blood Grenade can be thrown at enemies to deal impact damage and extra damage for five seconds, as well as slowing targets.

Magic Stick accumulates charges each time an enemy uses a skill within a certain range. Each charge regenerates 15 health and mana. It can be used to craft Magic Wand.

Observer Ward and Sentry Ward will be used to grant vision. Observer guarantees visibility and Sentry guarantees true sight, revealing invisible units and wards within its vision range.

Essential Items

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Arcane Boots grants movement speed and passive mana regeneration for you and your allies, in addition to regenerating a higher amount of mana with your charge.

Magic Wand provides bonuses to strength, agility and intelligence in addition to being activated in the same way as Magic Stick, but accumulates more regeneration charges.

Aghanim’s Shard is the mandatory prerequisite to enable Voodoo Switcheroo.

Final Items

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Glimmer Cape provides magic resistance and can turn you or an ally invisible for a certain period. Excellent for escaping dangerous situations or ganking an enemy, as well as allowing to become invisible while casting your Death Ward and can be used to make one of your allies invisible.

Bloodstone is an item that I started using more recently with this hero, and I soon realized how broken it can be. It grants a Health and Mana bonus, in addition to Spell Lifesteal and mana regeneration bonus, but the most interesting part is the area of effect bonus. Bloodstone will greatly expand the scope of Maledict and Voodoo Restoration while allowing you to spend more mana for longer, which can be very advantageous in combat.

Aghanim’s Scepter is an almost indispensable item in this game, guaranteeing improvements to the heroes’ skills. In the case of the Doctor, the Death Ward starts to launch projectiles which will hit enemies within its range, thus managing to hit multiple targets. Additionally, the scepter provides a bonus to primary attributes, Health and Mana.


Situational Items

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Black King Bar is a protection item that is very useful, especially when there are many magical abilities on the enemy side. BKB grants magic resistance, resistance to pure and reflected damage, applies a Basic Dispel effect, removes negative status effects, as well as bonuses to strength and attack damage.

Blink Dagger can be used in the Glimmer Cape slot as an escape and evasion item, making your hero able to teleport a certain distance instantly, but cannot be used for three seconds if you receive damage from an enemy hero or Roshan. You can use Dagger to escape after using Voodoo Switcheroo, taking advantage of the transformation's invulnerability period to recover the use of Blink.


Witch Doctor is my favorite hero in the game, and I hope this guide can help you understand a little more about his skills and strategies. I hope you enjoyed reading. Leave your opinion, questions or suggestions for future articles about Dota 2 in the comments.

See you next time!