The Dota Underlords items roster is no stranger to upheaval - not since the August Update, which removed every alliance item from the game and added three entirely new items into the fold. But now, they've only gone and added a whole new type of item in these new-fangled Contraptions, which can be placed onto the board to affect the outcomes of fights in various ways.
Our Dota Underlords items guide will walk you through every single item in the game, from newcomers such as Tombstone and Healing Ward to old favourites such as Pipe of Insight and Mekansm.
Dota Underlords items & contraptions [October] - best items list
An understanding of the items in Dota Underlords is essential for determining the outcome of a match. Victory might require something as simple as a well-placed Mask of Madness, or a late-game Refresher Orb. This Dota Underlords items guide looks to furnish you with a working knowledge of all the items currently in Dota Underlords as of October, followed by a few points on what we consider to be some of the best items in the game at this time.
- Equippable items in Dota Underlords - full list
- Global items in Dota Underlords - full list
- Dota Underlords Contraptions list
- Dota Underlords best items
- Dota Underlords strategy guide page links
Equippable items in Dota Underlords are divided into three types: Offensive, Defensive, and Support. But all of them work in the same way: once you've gained an equippable item, you must drag it from the items tab onto a viable hero on your board.
Each hero can only carry one Equippable item (and by the way, you can swap out items during combat, but it won't actually take effect until the next round). Let's take a look at every single equippable item currently in Dota Underlords. I've marked entirely new items in bold.
Note: both the below tables are split into different "pages" for each item tier. To navigate from tier to tier, click the Previous/Next buttons at the bottom of each table.
Global items in Dota Underlords are differentiated from Equippable items by their square (instead of circular) icon. Rather than equipping them onto a specific hero, they stay in your items tab and constantly bestow a passive buff onto certain (or all) members of your army.
As of the August Update, the number of Global items in Dota Underlords was substantially reduced as Valve removed all alliance items from the game and combined many of their effects in with the alliances themselves (for full details be sure to check out our Dota Underlords patch notes analysis guide). Of the remaining 10 Global items, only Fall From Grace is alliance-specific.
Below you'll find detailed information on every single Global item in Dota Underlords.
As of the Ace Tier Heroes and Contraptions Update (which you can read all about in full with our Dota Underlords patch notes guide), there is an entirely new brand of item in the game: Contraptions. These items can be placed onto the board just like a hero, and they can interact with other units. You can position them between fights just like a hero, and they affect the outcome of fights just like a hero.
But they're not heroes. They don't move, they don't have levels, they don't affect your unit count, and they don't contribute to enemy Underlord damage. But they can still be very useful when incorporated strategically into your army.
Below you'll find detailed information on each of the Dota Underlords Contraptions added so far.
When talking about the best anything in something as complex as Dota Underlords, you're going to run into problems because of how contextual and layered the game is at every turn. An amazing item can become relatively useless if used at the wrong time, on the wrong player, or in the wrong build. Likewise, there are certain fringe scenarios where items that don't often see the light of day can become incredibly influential. But despite this granularity, there are a few items that have emerged at the very top of the list.
Dota Underlords best items
- The Tier 1 items came off very well in recent Dota Underlords updates. Armor is hugely important, particularly in the early game, so Chainmail will always be my first choice. Tranquil Boots and Vitality Booster are also both very welcome items for tanking out your initial units.
- Mask of Madness is a great mid-game choice for boosting DPS, and the silence doesn't apply to passives which makes it great for heroes such as Anti-Mage, Drow Ranger, or Luna.
- Skull Basher may lack the raw power of something like a Sacred Relic, but if you equip it onto your fastest-attacking hero (Bloodseeker, Slark, Juggernaut, Alchemist, Troll Warlord) then suddenly you can start stun-locking key enemies like nobody's business.
- Vanguard is like a much-upgraded Vitality Booster that gives your hero an extra 70 armor for 50% of the times it's attacked. For a Tier 3 item, it's pretty amazing.
- I'm of the strong opinion that Pipe of Insight is the best, clutchiest of clutch items in Dota Underlords. That magic damage shield is an absolute game-changer in the late-game if you're being burst down too quickly by Mage builds and damaging abilities. Just make sure you hit as many units as possible with the shield.
- The new Dawning of Ristul item is extremely powerful in the right builds. If you're going for a Warrior/Hunter build or a Demon/Demon Hunter build or something similar, then you're unlikely to have much healing of your own, which makes this a perfect build to throw in a Dawning of Ristul to possibly severely hamper your enemy.
- Refresher Orb is huge, but only if it's placed on the right hero in the right position. This is for the really game-changing abilities - so you're looking at Tidehunter, Techies, Lich, Kunkka, and so on. And now, it provides extra mana and cooldown reduction to adjacent allies as well, so it seems Valve really want it to be a no-brainer whenever you're offered a Reresher Orb.
- Radiance and Assault Cuirass are the best Tier 5 items in my opinion. Radiance delivers godlike damage to almost the entire enemy team (don't believe me? Check the DPS tab after a fight), and Assault Cuirass is better than most Alliance perks at keeping your team alive and turning the tide of a fight. Equip either item onto a particularly tanky frontline hero, and make sure they're surrounded by both friendly and enemy units.
As for the remaining Global items in Dota Underlords:
- Fall from Grace can be enormously strong depending on your build. If you're going full Mage, for example, this item is often enough to give all enemies a full Tier 3 Heartless armor debuff, making them squishy both from a physical and a magical damage standpoint.
- Friends and Family Discount is a fantastic money-saving item for the late-game when you've more or less finished your build and it's time to start rolling down for upgrades or for that final hero to complete your board. Don't underestimate this item, it's often the best choice heading into the late-game.
- Summoning Stone is all but essential for summons-heavy Savage/Druid builds. With heroes such as Venomancer, Lycan, Nature's Prophet, and Lone Druid all pumping out extra units, having a Summoning Stone to buff them all in one fell swoop can be the difference between defeat and victory.
And as for Contraptions:
- Barricades can be very useful both for forcing chokepoints at the front of your army, and for blocking off a high-value ranged target such as KotL in a back corner so that they have time to gain mana and unleash their ability.
- Target Buddy is a very powerful Contraption, acting as a sort of Axe-lite with its tankiness and Taunt ability. It won't last long, but it can make all the difference, particularly in the mid-game.
- Healing Ward drops off in usefulness as time goes on but it's always a welcome addition to any board. It's hard to gauge how useful a Healing Ward actually is moment-to-moment, but I've had times where I would've lost a fight if not for a Healing Ward.
- Tombstone provides a steady stream of new units when positioned near the bulk of the fighting, and can be used to great effect in augmenting a Summons-heavy build.
But as I say, it's all contextual. Procure the best items for your current build, and consider how possible it might be to transition your build if you come across a particularly decent Global item. The best Dota Underlords players are those who use everything at their disposal to be as flexible as possible.
And that's pretty much all we have to offer on Dota Underlords items - at least for this guide. Check out all our other Dota Underlords guide pages just below for more focused and in-depth overviews on various different aspects of this addictive autobattler.
- Dota Underlords strategy guide - an overview of how to play Dota Underlords, with practical tips and strategies for winning matches
- Dota Underlords heroes - stats on every hero, and an insight into the best-performing heroes right now in Underlords
- Dota Underlords alliances - in-depth explanations and tips on all Alliances in Dota Underlords
- Dota Underlords builds - a focused look at some of the best builds in Dota Underlords and how you can adapt them to fit your needs
- Dota Underlords gold - learn how to create a colossal economy with these gold-focused tips and tricks
- Dota Underlords patch notes - explore the current state of the meta with our Dota Underlords patch notes analysis
- Dota Underlords Battle Pass - we talk about the current Battle Pass and all the new heroes and features coming with Dota Underlords Season 1