Dota is famous for having features that many other games would consider bugs. According to the creators of Dota, if it isn't officially listed as a bug, then it is treated as a feature. While there have been some “features” that are a fixture of Dota culture, there are many other bugs that have affected the game in negative ways. Here are the top 3 bugs that have ever been in Dota.
The most popular Dota bug of all time. So much so that an entire short at the International was dedicated to it. First popularized by Dendi and Puppey on Na'vi in 2013. The eastern european team was able to take this strategy to the max. While it is a great bug to use, it was difficult to execute as it needed a very good pudge player. Luckily, Na'vi had Dendi. At The International 2013, Na'vi was able to make an incredible lower bracket run which climaxed in their match against Tong Fu. In a game where it felt like Na'vi had no way out and Tong Fu had secured the Rohan, they were able to pull off the impossible.
Dendi consistently hooked Tong Fu players back into Na’vi’s fountain and brought them a comeback that they otherwise would not have. Eventually, Na’vi was able to win and move on in the tournament. The moment sparked outrage in the player’s lounge as Loda simply called the maneuver bug abuse. It turned into an incredible clip that fueled the Na’Vi vs. Alliance rivalry that continued even after the intentional 2013 ended.
A very early bug in Dota was present around 2013 and 2014. The bug only occurs after 80 minutes and only works if there is a Dark Seer in the game. However, if the minute that the game crosses over that game length, the entire game turns into a particle nightmare. Fire starts raining down from the skies, Ion Shells begin appearing on different units in-game and there are particle effects running free everywhere.
This bug was only present in the old source 1 version of the game and had to do with how particles were processed at the time. There are certain heroes that have more particles than others, Dark Seer being one of them. After the game goes on long enough, specific particles start appearing on things they aren't supposed to. Most commonly, the particle effects of both ancients start appearing on heroes. In this picture, we can see Pudge walk around with the Radiant ancient particle effect and a bunch of fire around him that isn't supposed to be there.
One of the funnier and more recent bugs that were present in the game was the immortal Vengeful Spirit. This bug occurred after Vengeful Spirit’s new Aghanim’s Scepter was added to the game. It allowed Vengeful Spirit to leave an illusion down after she dies, but the illusion is able to cast all of her spells on cooldown. Vengeful Spirit also spawns at the location of the illusion if it doesn’t die before Vengeful Spirit respawns. With so many new interactions with this addition, it is no surprise that a game-breaking bug popped up immediately after the patch was released.
When a Vengeful Spirit bought back while Aghanim's illusion was on the field, it would cause her to respawn with no animations, but complete invulnerability to anything on the field. Vengeful Spirit couldn't be targeted or clicked and she would be able to cast any spell at any time without any consequence. This made Vengeful Spirit the strongest hero in the game for the two weeks before the bug was patched out. Thankfully, Valve caught onto it quickly and it was out of the game quite soon, compared to the other bugs in this list.
Dota is a great game because of how complex it is. Bugs are just another example of how players can add something to their advantage before any other player can. Na’vi was the only team that was able to pull off the fountain hook when it got released. Did you pull off a fountain hook before it was removed from the game?