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I have been playing more ranked lately. In my last match I chose tide hunter because his ult complemented the team nicely.

The way I usually play him is to rush Blink Dagger, but someone was chewing me out saying I need to build Mekansm, buy Wards and Courier. Wards I understand, but Mek seems like a waste of gold and time for tide hunter.

When playing Tide hunter am I considered a support?

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    What rank level is this? I've seen people complaining about tide not doing it's sup job in the medium-low mmr areas. – sir_k Dec 17 '14 at 11:17
  • It'd be helpful to note the entire team composition before/after you picked Tide. Your role with a character may need to be shifted depending on what the rest of the team plays. – Jeroen Dec 28 '14 at 10:50
  • It's worth noting that mek isn't solely a support item. It's an excellent item to get on carries like Necrophos, Viper, even Bristleback (right now). Armour + bonus health at the press of a button? Yes please. – Yann Jun 2 '15 at 8:18
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Tidehunter is a support hero, but not in the sense of being the 5th position hard support, with only brown boots and a magic stick at 30 minutes. It's more of a semi-core support.

Tidehunter, Sand King, EarthShaker and the likes are relatively item dependent, as such you generally don't want to be the only support on the team if you're playing these heroes if you can help it. You need Blink Dagger and Arcanes, and the sooner you can get these up the better it is for your team.

However, if you do find yourself playing one of these greedy supports as the only support on the team, life is hard. Don't let your item greed blind you from the fact that it's better to get your dagger late and have ward coverage for the first 20 minutes, than have a 15 minute dagger and have your team fall massively behind through easily avoidable ganks.

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Rushing blink dagger is generally the way to go on Tidehunter. You want to get blink after arcane boots as soon as you can, then refresher, pipe, mek, or force staff.

However, Tidehunter is rarely in a position to be farming away. Getting courier for your pub game team wouldn't hurt before the horn. Buy that, a (very valuable now that it is 3 armor) ring of protection, and tangoes, and you're good to soak up experience offlaning getting levels in your passive and your anchor smash to farm the ancients, where you can get 6, and the blink dagger will fall into place after using your ult somewhere.

Unless... you're buying all the team's smokes, wards, counter-wards, dust... especially if your level 6 gank or ancient stacking didn't go swimmingly. There should be someone, if not two other players, in your game, who are more apt to get wards throughout the game. So, short answer (at the end of a long answer): no, Tidehunter isn't a support role.

Dependent on the four people you end up in a game with, well, you might be delaying that dagger for some wards if no one else will.

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Tidehunter is usually a position 3 or 4 (offlane or farming support). In the farm priority, depending on the composition of your team, you can be asked to build a mekansm or a pipe. However I would prioritize blink dagger over mekansm on Tidehunter in 95% of the game. There was a time where Tidehunter was played as a non farming support and was used only for Ravage but nothing else. At that time buying ward and courrier was natural. On the current patch (6.82) putting Tide in a 5th position is a waste of Tide's ability to contest any melee farmer and almost any dual lanes. His nuke (Anchor Smash) allows you to trade hit with anyone and since you get reduced damage from Kraken Shell, you can almost zone an enemy support out of his safelane if played correctly. Last but not least a farmed lategame tide offers often 2 Ravages that are most of the time gamebreaking and can win you the game.

Personnaly I would always rush a blink dagger because the initation potential it offers is huge. After that depending on how the game is developping (many early fights ?), or the ennemy team composition (lots of magical damage ? lots of chase potential ? Some hard right clicker ?) or if my team is domintating and creating space to get some farm, I'll concider the following items : Mekansm, Pipe of Insight, Heaven's Hallberd, Force Staff or Refresher Orb. In any case I like to get either Mana Boots or Tranquils + Soulring in order to sustain the Anchor Smash spam.

You can concider getting a Mekansm first if you or the ennemy team is foreseeing early mid game push (10/12 min). A Meksansm at that point will give your team a huge avantage for the early fights.

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Tide can be played on any of the 5 positions , but as he excels at the offlane (due to kracken) and farming support or no.4 (he can farm quite well with anchor smash even the ancient stacks with new change) he is played in these two positions more often. Simply tide with damage items or tide not having blink arcanes after 20 mins in to game just doesnt contibute well in team fights for a positive outcome for his team. Personally when you play tide , look at your team composition and try to analyse it before you buy items on him . If some other hero(1 or 2 ) can probably go for mekansm then you should rush blink or atleast arcanes-> blink . If you are the only hero that could get a faster mekansm than 4 or 5 then you should try to get it if you plan on pushing or you should just go blink. Though you feel mek is a waste on tide , if you have say 4 protect 1 type of heroes then going mek is really good as you will take 4 v 5 fights and a mek is gonna be more useful than a blink IMO. some games dont proceed as you like them to in pubs . your team is just doing very poorly and you also dint have best laning stage. I would suggest to go Urn arcanes and then blink when you are really behind , being greedy when behind is just adding to losing the game .

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  • Any hero can be played as any of the 5 positions, but like you imply in your post directly after, he is pretty much just a 3 or 4 position. Tide isn't getting much out of being the team's most farmed hero, and he suffers from being the least – enche Dec 18 '14 at 18:09
  • in very limited and specific lineups he can actually be position 1 . but its the fact that there are better heroes for position 1 (who dont do well in other lanes at all ) . there are specific push lineups where Pugna is considered "carry" and given no.1 position in farm and exp. sometimes he can be played 2 or atmost 3. thats how the hero functions efficiently . same way tide can be 2 or 3 atmost 4 IMO . from the small dota knowledge i have :) – Gowtham Dec 18 '14 at 18:15
  • "rushing blink every game on tide" is not the way to improve dota i feel. "building items situationally" as the famous line goes is how i feel i can improve at dota. that what i have said mostly. – Gowtham Dec 18 '14 at 18:18
  • i got what you meant just now , lol . Pros have picked tide as no .5 (EG i think ) as a greedy 5 support and probably even won the game . still in pubs i feel for tide being 5 isnt too hard at all if you participate in fights intelligently and even get maybe arc + blink 15-20 mins which isnt terrible for a pub. and some games am definitely going mek over blink when the 3 farming heroes arent getting one and actually help win fights(towers) rather than farm blink when my team is dying 4 v 5 . – Gowtham Dec 18 '14 at 18:29

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