ESWC 2011 Semifinals: monkeybusiness vs Na'vi

Posted by Bruno "gg-wicked" Carlucci 2 years, 21 weeks ago
ESWC 2011 Semifinals: monkeybusiness vs Na'vi

Hello and welcome to the 2011 ESWC Semifinals, where Na'Vi, the winner of The International and monkeybusiness, coming from a 4-0 group stage face off in a duel for the ages. Get ready to see two very even teams unfurl in a true clash of kings. And once you're over, don't forget to check on our statistical analysis of the tournament: The numbers of ESWC
The Pick/Ban analysis
First Ban PhaseFirst Pick Phase

monkey bans Chen, great at pushing and especially because of Puppey. They also ban Slardar, a hero with high movement speed, which attempts against monkey's high mobility play style.
Na'Vi bans Lich as they have done during the whole tournament, and Spectre, a powerful hero, although not favored by monkey.

night stalkeranti magepotm
natures prophetancient aparitionfaceless void

monkey picks Night Stalker, Antimage and Priestess of the Moon. Solid picks all the way through, very fast heroes, Night Stalker and Priestess of the Moon, as stated, are some of monkey's favorites and Antimage is a great late game hero that gets powerful quite fast in the game. monkey now has the main farmer for each of the 3 lanes and need 2 supports/roamers/junglers to help Antimage.

Na'Vi picks Furion, Ancient Apparition and Faceless Void. Furion is definitely first pick material, and the fact that he was banned (at least) 18 times in the whole tournament prove it. High mobility, great ganker, jungler, pseudo-disable that goes through Black King Bar, pusher; this guy does it all. Ancient Apparition is a favorite support for Na'Vi. Faceless Void is an interesting pick. During the tournament Na'Vi favored Drow Ranger and Weaver as their carries, but with monkey's picks, they want to make sure their heroes don't run around the place all the time, and on the other hand, they may be going for an AoE heavy line up.

Second Ban PhaseSecond Pick Phase
windrunner puck
tidehunter shadow shaman

monkey bans Windrunner and Faerie Dragon. None of these heroes warrant a ban just because, but with Furion, Ancient Apparition and Faceless Void in Na'Vi's pool, Na'Vi is missing 1 or 2 solo heroes. Windrunner and Puck are two of the best at that game, and these bans are just a way of shrinking Na'Vi's pool.
Na'Vi bans Tidehunter as they want to establish teamfight dominance and Shadow Shaman, a favorite late pick for monkey, though looking at monkey's picks, picking Shadow Shaman would be detrimental as he needs levels FAST and the 3 heroes they picked all need their own farm leaving no space for him in this team.

vengeful spirit venomancer
enigma beastmaster

monkey picks Vengeful Spirit and Venomancer, giving them support for the Antimage as well as roaming power in the shape of Vengeful Spirit and pushing power plus team presence with Venomancer. Solid picks that don't need that much farm in order to be effective.
Na'Vi picks Enigma and Beastmaster. Great picks, both heroes can solo and Enigma can transition to the jungle once Faceless Void is capable of holding his own, freeing a lane for farm. Additionally Beastmaster gives them another way to keep Antimage still (and also goes through BKB) strong ganking power and map awareness.

Critical Hero
anti mage

With such a parity in heroes and skill, it will all probably fall towards late game. Na'Vi has many mana-dependent heroes with little to no escape mechanism. If Antimage can take advantage of this situation, he can quickly take control of the game, but if he fails to succeed, it will leave monkey at a heavy disadvantage.


Na'Vi is clearly going for a teamfight-into-push team. With AA and Furion being able to participate from anywhere in the map, and many AoE ultimates, they will want to force teamfights as much as possible and push after every victory with Eidolons and Treants.

Denmark monkeybusinessUkraine Na'Vi
chen lich

slardar spectre

windrunner puck
tidehunter shadow shaman
night stalker
natures prophet ancient aparition
anti mage potm
faceless void
vengeful spirit venomancer
enigma beastmaster
night stalker miGGel (Mid)
anti mage Link (Top)
potm AngeL (Bot)
vengeful spirit Ryze (Top)
venomancer Calculus (Top)
natures prophet LighTofHeaveN (Top)
ancient aparition ARS-ART (Top)
faceless void XBOCT (Top)
enigma Puppey (Bot)
beastmaster Dendi (Mid)

Key events (min 0:00-10:00)

4:07: Night Stalker gets haste rune just before Beastmaster which leads to a First Blood. Furion arrives too late and can't even the score.

5:15: monkey is still playing very aggressively. While Na'Vi is towerhugging top, AA gets out of position and is initiated upon. Furion comes back and saves him but both heroes are left with extremely low health. NS in the meantime arrives and takes the easy double kill. Fortunately for Na'Vi, Void is untouched.


7:50: NS gets the kill on the jungling Furion. All the while, Void and AA are forced to tower hug as they realize the heroes are missing, so AM has free farm on the top lane.

8:02: AA falls back a bit in order to go back to base, but a ward that NS planted helps them ambush him quickly. VS gets the killing blow.

8:15: BM, who's been alone for 1 minute, decides to gank bottom. They get the kill, unfortunately BM is 20 mana short for a primal roar and can't stop PotM to kill Enigma before dying

9:40: Furion and Enigma are both in the Dire jungle. PotM takes the chance and pushes bot, while NS pushes mid and goes for a solo smoke gank top. AA is out of position again and NS gets another kill by the 10 minutes mark.

The analysis so far:

monkey has a huge early game advantage in kills, by going 7-1 However, all 3 T1 towers are still up, BM was left unchecked for quite a while and most importantly, they couldn't kill Faceless Void, who is keeping up with AM's farm. At this moment, the key hero's NS who participated in almost every kill and is currently leading in gold obtained, even then, his 10 minute items are treads, bottle and magic wand, AM has boots and is 300 gold away from his Vanguard and Mirana just has bottle boots and wand. On the other side, Enigma farmed his Arcane boots, Void has more than enough money to finish his vanguard and BM has urn, boots bottle and magic wand. So what we see is that, despite being at a huge disadvantage in kills, they're keeping up thanks to creep farming. Void, BM and Enigma have 47, 42 and 39 ck respectively while AM, PotM and NS have 41, 40 and 34. monkey would do well in not overestimate their early game advantage and should try to focus on capitalizing their kills more effectively.

Key events (min 10:00-20:00)

10:25: A very confusing play takes place in top Dire's ramp. Na'Vi, thanks to their ward, catch Venomancer and NS going for rune and between Enigma and Furion try to kill Venomancer. Void gets to the fight and Enigma places a nice black hole getting both NS and Venomancer. VS and AM arrive at the fight, deciding to focus on a low HP Furion instead of interrupting the Black Hole while PotM uses her ultimate from the other side of the map to save a 50hp Venomancer. This catches Na'Vi unaware and Furion dies to VS and NS. The fight, however, is not over as BM and AM arrive to the fight, Moonlight Shadow allows NS and AM to position right next to Enigma and kill him immediately. BM and Void find themselves severely outmatched and retreat, but Void is focused and dies too. BM manages to TP away just in time, but that teamfight went 3-0 for monkey.

11:25: PotM took advantage of the teamfight top and pushed the bottom 1st tier tower. However Furion got back just in time to deny it, and stop monkey from getting away with the farm that much. Na'Vi now decides to ward bot river and mid to compensate the map control lost when they forfeited that tower.

13:55: The game slows down a bit with the break of dawn. While the carries are still farming top, both teams are now focused on pushing. PotM wants that T2 tower while Void and Enigma are pushing top. But NS and VS go top for a smoke gank and PotM also helps them with her ultimate and tps top. They find Furion on the way who has absolutely no chance. Enigma and Void quickly retreat and monkey pushes down the top T1 tower. A teamfight quickly ensues and AM gets trapped within Void's Chronosphere and gets on the receiving end of an Ice Blast. A clutch swap from VS and a Venomancer ultimate saves him though, and Na'Vi realizes they have to fall back. A bit of miscommunication strikes monkey as VS and Venomancer start pursuing without AM nor Mirana. Na'Vi realizes that and between AA, Void and BM make short work of them.

17:00: Venomancer finishes warding both sides of the river. monkey tried counter warding but weren't lucky and chose the wrong spots for sentries, both teams have 2 wards up. Furion and AA use their ultimates in order to completely stop a Radiant mid push. Na'Vi don't waste time and push both the top and mid tower at the same time, thus regaining map control and gold differential.

18:00: Feeling like they have to retake control of the game, monkey goes for a smoke gang and catch BM going for a rune. NS, Venomancer and VS kill him before he has time to react properly.

18:40: Venomancer goes bot to help AM and Mirana defend the bottom tower, that's being pushed by Na'Vi's AA and Enigma. Venomancer gets a bit off position and finds himself on the receiving end of Enigma's, AA's and Furion's ultimate. Unsurprisingly he dies, but Antimage and Mirana kill both AA and Enigma just afterwards.

Years of college made them HATE Calculus

19:00: Na'Vi's wards expired. Again a short break which Void, AM and BM use to farm.

The analysis so far:

monkey still controls the teamfights and even managed to kill Void, but a single mistake on that 13:55 play costed them a lot and offered Na'Vi the breathing room to kill 2 towers and even the gold differential again. NS is the most farmed hero of the game with Power Treads, Bottle, Vanguard and Wand, with a Point Booster on top to get that quick Aghanim. Antimage decided not to finish Vanguard and go for Power Treads and Battle Fury, however, he just has 1800 in bank and the Perseverance, so he's 800 gold away from it yet, and PotM was able to farm her treads and Ultimate orb, going for a Manta. None of monkey's heroes have any saved money.

On the other hand, Na'Vi have Power Treads and Vanguard on Void over 2000 gold in the bank, an Enigma with Mekansm almost complete and BM with the same items as 10 minutes ago but 2.5k gold worth of farm. Furion was able to farm his Hand of Midas and expect him to start ramping up on gold really fast from now on as he already has 1k.

monkey is just 1.5k gold above Na'Vi despite going 15-4 in kills (and 8-3 in the last 10 minutes). They are still unable to capitalize on their good teamfights and they are even in towers. This is a complicated moment for monkey as Na'Vi's farm potential is way better with Furion and Enigma being able to take the jungle. monkey still has a slight edge, NS is 8-0 and AM is freefarming (99ck)and hasn't died yet, but Void (103ck) is getting his farm too. So they will have to shut down Na'Vi fast or hope that their farmed AM will be able to overpower Na'Vi by sheer brute force.

Key events (min 20:00-30:00)

20:25: NS pops an invisibility rune and waits next to Furion for the time to strike. He does, with the help of PotM, and gets the kill, but not fast enough. Great reaction from Na'Vi, who teleport to help him and getting a kill on NS, stopping his monster kill with a BM last hit. A terrible 1 for 1 trade for monkey. As well as Na'Vi reacted, monkey did not, as VS was babysitting AM who was farming bot alone and Venomancer was attempting a mid push that didn't pose a real threat.

21:30: Na'Vi re-wards bot river, while monkey wards the way close to the 2nd bot tower.

23:30: After two minutes of farming by both teams, monkey decides to push the bottom tower. So they counter-ward bottom river and go 5-man pushing. Enigma was alone by that tower and AM made short work of him. The tower falls immediately after. monkey has to keep doing this in order to put the pressure on Na'Vi. Confident, NS and AM dive inside Na'Vi's base to get an AA kill, but fail to capitalize. Void arrives and gets Vengeful Spirit and Venomancer inside his Chronosphere, killing Venomancer. A very nice arrow from Mirana could have put him in a tight spot, but a clutch force of nature from Furion spawned a truant that took the arrow in a very Kevin Costner-like way.

Nature's prophet: Not in my watch!

24:40: Na'Vi has had the lower hand regarding teamfights, but every time they got an edge, they used it to gain an advantage, in this case, after monkey fled from the fight, they manage to kill Roshan and Void takes the Aegis.

25:30: AM's farming is going overboard now that he got his BF. He went straight for Vladimir's Offering, a questionable item at this point, and is now holding 1800 gold in his pockets. Together with NS, they push Na'Vi's only remaining Tier 1 tower and ward the place. Mirana has her manta now, Void has his own BF, and BM almost has his Necromonicon at level 3. NS has almost finished his Aghanim's Scepter in the meantime.

26:15: AM pushes bot while the rest of the team use smoke and go to gank Faceless Void who's farming right where monkey placed their ward. He's so tough however that the other 4 heroes can't kill him before Enigma and AA get there with their own ultimates. Void also uses his, resulting in a double kill for Enigma with Mirana and VS dead. Void loses his Aegis in that fight which would have made it a somewhat fair trade, but Na'Vi once again take advantage of the teamfight result and kill the middles tier 2 tower. AM on his part, gets the high ground and reduces the tier 3 tower to half its health before Void comes to scare him away.

30:00: The game goes stale and everyone just farms for the last 3 minutes.

The analysis so far:

monkey is 17-8 but just 2-5 in the last 10 minutes. Na'Vi is starting to get the most out of the teamfights, winning 2 of them and getting Roshan and a tower when they did. monkey only got a tower in these 10 minutes and are still 1.5k ahead in farm, but as the game progresses, that difference is more and more insignificant. On their plus side, AM is getting huge amounts of farm and items, on the other side, the rest of the team isn't making much improvement. NS is not the killing machine that he was early game and PotM still only has Manta. On the other hand, Enigma has his Mekansm and Dagger of Escape, and even AA has a Ghost Scepter. Furion however can't seem to complete an item and BM still hasn't completed his level 3 Necromonicon. The tide is shifting towards Na'Vi; monkey should make AM participate more in teamfights now that he's way stronger than the other heroes. If he keeps being indecisive in teamfights, Na'Vi will slowly take advantage of each and every one. Na'Vi is in control now, they just have to execute properly.

Key events (min 20:00-30:00)

30:20: monkey goes for a full team push bot, but they get discouraged quickly when they realize the whole Dire team is defending. They don't want to force a teamfight and just scatter away to other lanes to farm.

31:20: Na'Vi retaliates with their own bot push, finally getting that T1 tower, and Venomancer as well who was poorly positioned. monkey however does the clever thing and pushes mid and top at the same time as well. BM goes to defend top but dies easily to a very fat AM the rest of the monkey team

31:50: Both teams meet behind the middle tier 2 tower, which is still standing, and fight very evenly, until a terrible Chronosphere gets AA and Enigma trapped just in its border, and AM just outside. So he proceeds to kill both heroes. Not all is lost as Enigma buys back and Furion gets the kill on NS who was also trapped in the Chronosphere. monkey eventually retreats, finally getting away from a teamfight with a clear advantage.

Hey, free food!

34:30: monkey tries to do Roshan, but Na'Vi's wards spot them, so they decide to go push mid instead. Furion gets a Haste rune and decides to go push top. In the end they exchange T2 towers.

35:30: monkey sets 2 very aggressive wards, they need to control Dire's bottom half in order to secure Roshan.

37:15: AM ganks Furion, who was still pushing that top sentinel side, but Furion already has a Scythe of Vyse so he hexes AM and runs away. The rest of Na'Vi decides to go kill Roshan, but thanks to their wards, monkey quickly congregates around it, but find themselves on the receiving end of a Chronosphere. Thanks to Furion's high mobility, it's a 5 on 4 fight for Na'Vi and Venomancer and Venge die fast. AM arrives late, gets stunlocked and finally dies for the first time in the game. Na'Vi then focuses on NS and kills him. Venomancer bought back, but again, he didn't have enough speed to get to the teamfight in time. Na'Vi now can get Roshan easily and the Aegis goes for Void.

38:30: Not content with the Aegis, Na'Vi pushes mid. A messy teamfight ensues and they kill Venomancer, Mirana and VS, however AM and NS respawn and manage to kill Void, BM and Furion. Void has an Aegis though and the other two heroes just buy back (although arguably in the case of BM). Furion goes back to the fight and saves Void from AM, and together with Furion, they teleport away to safety. The tower was left at 1/5 HP though, so it was all in all an unsuccessful push.

The analysis so far:

Na'Vi is 9-6 in these 10 minutes, evened the tower difference and got Roshan. No tier 2 towers are left on both teams and most importantly, Na'Vi is now 2.5k up in gold. They are gaining momentum non-stop. Void has a Manta Style and 4400 gold in the bank. AA is going for a BKB and BM and Enigma have 1.5k each. As if that wasn't enough, Vengeful Spirit and Venomancer are really starting to fall back in levels (lv10 and lv12) while Na'Vi's heroes are all between levels 14 and 20.

On monkey's side, Mirana farmed a monkey King Bar, AM has a Butterfly and Venge and Venomancer each have a Drums of Endurance. This part of the game was characterized by heavy farming periods, and Na'Vi's lineup allows them for much better farm distribution, wisely getting farm on 4 heroes. Even Furion, who had a lousy start, has now the same farm as monkey's Night Stalker. The fact now is that this is late game now. The team that commits the less mistakes will take this match. monkey had control during the first 20 minutes, but the second 20 gave Na'Vi stability. They are even at towers, farm and kill score (23-17 for monkey). This is already an excellent match with 2 very even teams.

Key events (min 40:00-50:00)

41:30: All the lanes are pushed next to monkey's base, so monkey decides to smoke gang, but can't find any hero, and settle for pushing mid and go to farm.

48:30: After 7 minutes of farming, a double damage on PotM is the signal for monkey to push. The quickly encounter Void and BM, PotM aims an arrow towards Void but a clutch Manta activation saves him from the long stun. He proceeds to catch AM and NS inside a Chronosphere. PotM is left just outside and pops her ultimate, but that doesn't do any good to the heroes already inside the sphere. Venge swaps herself inside, in order to save NS and dies. Enigma pops his own black hole just to trap AM in it. Venomancer pops a very nice poison nova getting most of Na'Vi inside it, and NS pops a BKB and goes into the fight. Enigma manages to kill Venomancer by right-clicking him and Mirana gets BM, who immediately buys back and goes back into the fight. Void and Furion, on the meantime, focus on AM and get the kill mostly thanks to Void's MKB going through AM's butterfly. PotM kills Furion, who, again, instantly buys back. BM is now back to help AA kill BM, while Void is killed by PotM. Guessed what Void did? Yup. He bought back. Only PotM is left from monkey and without a leap, is easily killed by Na'Vi. A 5-3 fight for Na'Vi who was able to buy back every hero. They transition into Roshan and kill him uncontested. Void gets the Aegis and Furion gets the cheese.

The god of arrows is not with you today.

The Analysis so far:

Na'Vi is now in full control of the game. Despite AM being extremely farmed, the rest of the team can't be as effective and the only teamfight in the last 10 minutes resulted in a 5-3 win for Na'Vi who got Roshan and is pushing mid to get raxes. This seems almost over. Let's see what happens next. There's also another troubling factor with monkey. Mirana, NS and AM decided to go for BKB, which is a terrible idea in this particular game. Between Black Hole, Sprout, Chronosphere and Primal Roar, there are lots of disables that go through magic immunity in order for a BKB to be useful. Not that at this point it would have changed anything, though.

Key events (min 50:00-end)

50:30: Na'Vi pushes wildly and gets both barracks mid and both top barracks. monkey manages to fend them off, but not before losing NS and VS. Besides, every single hero from Na'Vi comes out alive. Na'Vi decide to go all out bottom and get the tier 3 tower while losing Void's aegis. A nice Black hole helps them get AM, VS and Venomancer. AM buys back immediately in order to avert disaster to Radiant´s base. This surprises Na'Vi who lose Void, BM, Furion and AA to AM's and NS's combined effort.

53:30: In a surprising turn of events, AM pushes and single-handedly destroys both mid raxes, but is forced to come back and defend along with the rest of the team, because the top lane was wrecking havoc inside their own base.

Yeah! We got this, totally!

56:05: Na'Vi decides to go for that last push, A good initiation by void, followed by a great black hole makes quick work of both of monkey's support heroes, but a superb comeback from AM kills BM, Enigma and AA, the three of which immediately buy back. In the middle of this confusion, Furion pushed top and destroyed both T4 towers. monkey is forced to hug their throne in order to stop the super creeps from ending the game.

57:40: With just 2 raxes left, monkey knows that the only thing they can do is push the lanes away from their base.

59:45: monkey pushes next to Na'Vi's base and initiate on an baiting Void. However, the assistance comes right away and a good black hole and Ice blast kills every hero except PotM. AM and NS buy back immediately. As it's time, Na'Vi, for the fourth time in this game, kill Roshan. As an afterthought, Enigma finds the Radiant team and trades deaths with NS who can't buyback now. Enigma, on the other hand, waits a few seconds and buys back.

61:00: Na'Vi decides to push mid and go bot, leaving monkey with the choice between defending their throne from the super creeps or defending their bottom barracks. Unfortunately they can't do both, so Na'Vi gets mega creeps and the game is over a few seconds later.

Final Thoughts

Na'Vi gets the game deservedly. monkey had a very big kill advantage early game but they couldn't convert it into pushes and positional advantage, while on the other hand Na'Vi followed every successful clash with Roshan and/or a tower. Antimage ended with over 600gpm and full items, but monkey lacked real initiation power while the Chronosphere-Black Hole- Ice Blast- Wrath of Nature combo ended teamfights before they started. Na'Vi was able to exploit farm more adequately and held their own against an initial disadvantage. Great win for Na'Vi.

With the coming of the Dota2 beta, one of the most heated discussions regarding the game comes in the form of the debate on whether there should be a Concede function or not. Hopefully this game will serve to realize that despite starting at a huge disadvantage, clever plays and clear headedness can turn the tables of a game, no matter how dire the score may look. It's no coincidence that the best games at tournament level are the ones where a team can get a huge turnaround, and sometimes all it takes is an ill-advised teamfight or lack of desire to push. Dota games are meant to be played to the end in order for these things to happen. Fight to the end! Don't give up easily! And I promise you that the satisfaction you'll get from the occasional turnaround will be much MUCH greater than many 25-minute stomps.

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