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Fan Nickname / Dota 2

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Being the kind of game it is, having a bunch of community-made nicknames in Dota 2 was inevitable. Beyond simply shortening names for ease of use (eg. Wraith King becomes WK, Abbadon becomes Abba), we have:

Items

  • The Animal Courier is referred to as a "chicken" due to its character model from the original Dota. For the same reason, the Flying Courier is referred to as a "crow". Acknowledged by Valve with "Cluckles the Brave" courier.
    • A few other items are referred to by their original names by players and casters who have been in the scene for a long time. Lothar's Edge (Shadow Blade), Sobi Mask (Sage's Mask), and Mask of Death (Morbid Mask) are the most common ones. While less common, you'll still come across the occasional player that still refers to Desolator as "Stygian" (from Stygian Desolator), Drum of Endurance as "Janggo" (from Ancient Janggo of Endurance), and Daedalus as "Buriza" (from Buriza-do Kyanon).
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  • Although more prevalent in the original Defense of the Ancients, the Iron Branch is sometimes referred to as the "GG Branch" due to its original description: "Wearing one of these ensures a Good Game."
  • The item Rod of Atos is sometimes called the "Rod of Aui," after competitive player Aui_2000, one of the few pro players who advocates its utility.
  • The Scythe of Vyse has always been referred to as "The Sheepstick" by players and even some heroes (because it turns a target into sheep). In fact, Heroes of Newerth has an Expy called the Kuldra's Sheepstick. Interestingly, it turns unit into pigs.
  • Meteor Hammer gets the semi-affectionate name "Meme Hammer" for being considered an Awesome, but Impractical gimmick item on launch. Even after it was buffed to become viable, the name stuck.

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Heroes

  • The biggest and most obvious example is Nature's Prophet. His original name in DotA was Furion, but this was changed in the transition to DotA 2 due to copyright reasons. However, his actual name (prior to it being redacted) is very rarely used due to being unpopular and Furion is frequently used instead. The game files still refer to him as Furion, and it remains one of the few holdovers from the original Dota that has persisted since the playerbase migrated.
  • Certain heroes are still referred to by their names from the original Dota. In addition to Furion (Nature's Prophet), notable ones include "Panda" for Brewmaster, "Pit Lord" for Underlord, "Tauren Chieftain" for Elder Titan, and "Leoric" for Wraith King.
  • Anti-Mage: "Anti-Fun," since his main mechanic punishes the opposing team for casting spells, which is a major component of the fun of the game. Also because he's no fun to play against if he manages to get farmed.
  • Bloodseeker: "Pubseeker", due to his high popularity in public / pickup games. He also goes by the moniker "Bloodcyka" (pronounced "Bloodsuka") for his popularity among Russians in the low-skill brackets note . But, now that he is a viable pick in competitive scene...
    • He's also sometimes referred to as "Race Car" and "Ferrariseeker" due to the 6.79 patch which completely removes his speed cap when his Thirst passive is triggered.
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  • Chaos Knight, Ogre Magi, and Phantom Assassin are respectively referred to as Casino Knight, Casino Magi, and Casino Assassin, due to their Random Number God based abilities.
  • Dark Seer: "Sonic" or "Sanic" due to the spikes on his back giving him the appearance of a hedgehog, and his Surge ability allowing him to GO FAST.
  • Disruptor: "Dis Raptor", given his mount of choice.
  • Enchantress: ''Bambi". Her fun name at Dota 1.
  • Faceless Void has Gorzerk, his fun name in Dota 1.
  • Huskar is occasionally referred to as "Michael Jordan" since he jumps at the target with an overhead stabbing motion when casting Life Break, similar to Axe's ultimate.
    • He's also occasionally known as "Rambo".
  • Invoker's Chaos Meteor is often dubbed "Chaos Meatball" (or just "meatball") because it looks like one. There's also the much less flattering "Injoker" for the hero himself, used when the player controlling him has no idea what they're doing.
  • Leshrac is the "Disco Pony". Even the Guinness Book of World Records refers to him by that name, and The International 2016 Compendium turned it into an Ascended Meme by giving him a taunt where he dances to disco music, and a quest titled "Disco Never Dies".
  • Night Stalker: The Legal Map Hack for his Aghanim's Scepter upgrade. Sometimes, Batman... because he has bat wings and active at nights.
    • Keeper of the Light shares this name, as his Aghanim's Scepter gives him the same effect in daytime as Night Stalker's does at night.
      • Speaking of Keeper of the Light, "Gandalf". Also his fun name in Dota 1.
  • Luna is sometimes called "Loona" or "Lunar", the former because of the way she pronouces her own name, and the latter due to caster TobiWan's Australian accent tending to make her name sound like that.
  • Phantom Lancer: "Cancer Lancer" or "Phantom Cancer" due to his rapid multiplication and the ability to win even the most hopeless games by "infesting" all the lanes with powerful illusions.
    • Related: Gyrocopter was "Chemocopter" during Phantom Lancer's heyday, due to Flak Cannon damaging the entire "Cancer Lancer" army at once.
  • Meepo is sometimes "Mapo" based on a silly corruption of his name.
  • Nyx has "Nyxnyxnyx" based on his tendency to repeat the word "Nyx" over and over.
  • Harbinger's title underwent several changes in Dota 2, going from the original Dota's "Obsidian Destroyer" to "Outworld Destroyer" and then "Outworld Demolisher" before they settled on the current "Outworld Devourer". Naturally, players have come up with their own joke names to poke fun at the constant name changes, with "Ongoing Developer" and "Outhouse Decorator" being among the more prominent.
  • Shadow Fiend: "Swagger Fiend" due to his distinctive walk animation in the original Dota. His new character model introduced in the Rekindling Soul update faithfully replicates the walk, and the nickname was acknowledged by Valve with his "Fiendish Swag" taunt.
  • Slark: "Fishi", due to his appearance and (as a ganker) inevitable comparison to Riki.
  • Sniper gets "Hoo hoo, haa haa" after one of his more memetic voice lines.
  • Spirit Breaker: Space Cow, after the PyrionFlax guide to Spirit Breaker. This later became an Ascended Meme with the Three Spirits patch; Earth Spirit refers to him as a "space cow" in some of his responses. Another name that's gaining some traction is Spirit Baker. His fun name is "Roadrunner".
  • Tiny is sometimes just "Tony", based on a common typo of his name.
  • Treant Protector: "Tree" or "Treeman" for being a tree person.
  • Underlord: "Uberlord" due to his ultimate being able to transport an entire team across the map, drawing comparisons to the transportation service Uber.
  • Venomancer: "Bananamancer", due to his old model's curved posture and bright yellow-green color. Became an Ascended Meme with a taunt released for him which features him dancing around, summoning a banana.
  • Windranger: "Windginger", because she's a redhead.note 
  • Witch Doctor: "The Walking Fountain," because of his constant AoE heal and ultimate.
  • Wraith King is generally known as the "Manliest Hero Without Testicles" due to the popular CAPS LOCK LEORIC guide.
  • Zeus: "Mario," since his model design (one of the earliest and worst in the game, to the point where Valve have restricted additions of cosmetics to him until the model is redesigned) bears uncanny similarities to Nintendo's mascot. Valve acknowledged this with his Taunt item, "Heavenly Jump".
  • Pangolier and Dark Willow, The two heroes revealed at the The International 2017 (a sword-slinging pangolin man with some sort of French-Hispanic accent and a fairy in green) quickly earned the colloquial names "Puss in Boots" and "Tinker Bell" respectively before having their real names revealed.
    • "Smarmadillo" is also quite popular for Pangolier, based on the pun and his cocky attitude. After the reveal of his kit, he also gained "Sanic" (shared with Dark Seer) due to his ultimate Rolling Thunder.

Abilities

  • Axe's ultimate, Culling Blade, is colloquially referred to as a "Dunk" due to the jumping motion he makes prior to bringing the weapon down overhead on the target, much like a basketball dunk. It's also referred to as Culling Beard, as part of his manly nature.
    • Earthshaker's ultimate, Echo Slam is also referred as a "Dunk". Referenced in his voice line, too!
      • And a majorly successful Echo Slam is known as a "Chaos Dunk", to the point that it eventually became an Ascended Meme.
  • Chen: The creeps controlled by Chen's Holy Persuasion are collectively referred to as "the Chen army".
  • Crystal Maiden casting her ultimate, Freezing Field, is sometimes referred to as "Let it Go".
  • Faceless Void's ultimate, Chronosphere, is sometimes referred to as a "blueberry" due to its appearance, as well as just "bubble".
  • The act of casting Infest on an allied initiator as Lifestealer and then jumping out after the initiation, dealing area damage in the process, is called a "N'aix bomb" (N'aix being Lifestealer's given name).
  • Lion's Aghanim's Scepter version of Finger Of Death which has an AoE, shown as multiple beams, is referred to as Fist of Death. Also ties in nicely with the Double Entendre of "Fingering"/"Fisting" the enemy.
  • Phoenix's sun form after casting Supernova is usually referred to as an "egg" instead.
  • "Magic Coconut" is a semi-common name for Witch Doctor's Paralyzing Cask spell, especially when it achieves some truly impressive bounces. Acknowledged by Valve with his "Bonker the Mad" Immortal item, that change his Cask into a coconut.
    • His ultimate ability Death Ward is sometimes just referred to as "Look at it go!". However, in a similar case to Garen's memetic "DEMACIAAA!", said voice line is actually tied to the aforementioned Paralyzing Cask, with the association resulting from the ability often being used to pin the enemy team down immediately before casting Death Ward.
    • Death Ward is also given the name "Dubstep Ward" for its sound effect.
  • Visage's Familiars are almost always referred to as "birds".
  • Warlock's ultimate Chaotic Offering is sometimes referred to as the "Dropping the Rock" as a nod to its original name in the original Dota, Rain of Chaos, in which the Infernal (a giant flaming rock golem) would fall from the sky. It was changed to its current form since both Rain of Chaos and the Infernal are owned by Blizzard.

Professional Scene

  • Matches between Alliance and Navi are referred to as "El Classico", based on them being the two teams competing in the grand finals of The International 2013.

Others

  • The Hellbear neutral camp is referred to as "Tomato and Potato," due to their colors (yellow and red). It even ties in with the term "farming." The big red Hellbear Smasher also gets the moniker "Killer Tomato".
    • Their original names (Ursa Warrior and Ursa Champion) were poorly used, and 'Hellbear' originally arose as a nickname before becoming Ascended Fanon.
  • ChrisC, a developer at Valve, is frequently nicknamed "Bot Guy", as he's often the only one who works on the AI hero bots.
  • The Satyr Tormentor neutral creep's Shockwave spell, which it fires off as soon as enough heroes are in the area, is refered to as a "Hadouken".
  • Sometimes, players refers to heroes redundantly. Such as Kotl of the Light, Potm of the Moon (Mirana), Qop of Pain, etc. In a similar vein, we have "Dota of the Ancients" for the game itself.
  • Hispanic speakers have several nicknames that play with "DOTA", because "-dota" happens to be one of the many augmentative suffixes of the Spanish language.
    • The act of playing DOTA until sunrise is known in Spanish as "amaneciDOTA", which literally means "big all nighter".
    • Detractors or salty players might call the game "mierDOTA", which means "huge crap".
  • The collective effort of the teams to control vision and warding is often called the 'vision game'.
  • The Ancients of both teams are referred to as "Thrones", due to the Frozen Throne being used as the Scourge (Dire) Ancient in the original mod.
  • A "dieback" is when someone dies, uses their buyback, and then dies again immediately afterward; not only does this expend a lot of gold for little reward, but also puts them out of the fight even longer.
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