Dota 2 patch brings new heroes, coaching, crafting, and Diretide

Valve said it had a "huge" Dota 2 update and gosh golly, it certainly does. Today will bring something for Doters of all skill levels, from coaching tools for newbies to two extra heroes for veterans in search of something new. As everyone likes hats, crafting is in too. And Diretide's back!

The two new heroes are Storm Spirit's siblings brought over from the original DotA mod, the Earth Spirit and Ember Spirit. One's a Strength hero, the other's Agility, and both look mighty fetching. They're so fancy, in fact, that Valve has given Storm a makeover.

While grizzled Dota players have kicked Valve's chair demanding new heroes, newcomers just want it to be less terrifying. The 'Three Spirits' update page details its new in-game Coaching system, which lets folks help out their less-skilled chums. Coaches are players who don't control a hero, but rather spectate the action and give guidance. They have access to Dota 2's spectator tools to easily see what their team's up to, and can draw lines and ping as well as chat to offer advice.

As for crafting, Three Spirits introduces recipe scrolls which let players combine items to get something new or something fancier. Recipes can be received as item drops, or bought with keys to a new treasure chest. Cosmetic items now have sockets too, to fill with gems and runes. These don't add anything new, rather creating a unified system for Dota 2's item traits like stat-tracking, autographs, animations, and particle effects.

Like last year, Diretide is a special Halloween game mode with three stages, which has players hunting and stealing candy, then feeding Roshan, then fighing the big fella. Special prizes are up for grabs, including the horrifying Greevil couriers. It'll start today then run until November 28.

The patch is already live in the test client, and should be rolled out to everyone later today.