[OH SNAP, HE'S OUT OF HIDING.] Warcraft III: The Frozen Throne Specialty FAQ - Dark Ranger Hero. Version 1.0 Started on 8/21/2005 by Earthshaker, finally submitted on 12/29/2006 Copyright 2005-2006 by Earthshaker (Honatuto@yahoo.com) Anyone may reproduce this FAQ electronically, but do not sell it for money. If you wish to place this on your website, TOUGH BEANS. The *only* place this walkthrough will EVER be published is www.GameFAQs.com (or its affiliates.) If you host without my permission or GameFAQs, you are hosting without GameFAQs's express legal consent, and I'm fairly certain that the legal repercussions for that are, at best, undesirable. You can also email your INTELLIGENT comments, questions, gripes, suggestions, submissions, love letters, etc. to the above address; however, I have a special Email now set up that I check every so often regarding video game help. This email is Honatuto (at) yahoo (dot) com (spammers begone!) TABLE OF CONTENTS 1.) Revision history 2.) "Lolz omg wut is a neutral hero? Kan I kill it?!" (an overview) 3.) Dark Ranger - an Overview A.) Stats B.) Abilities 4.) Dark Ranger by Race A.) Human/Alliance B.) Orc/Horde C.) Night Elf/Sentinel D.) Undead/Scourge 5.) Final Summary 6.) Repeat Copyright <<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>> ^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^* 1. Revision History *^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^ <<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>> 12/29/2006 - Version 1.0. I wrote this FAQ so very long ago and forgot to submit it. It was originally intended to be an in-depth view of certain specific heroes that people tend to have troubles using, but since then, I've looked over it, tacked on some grammatical fixes, etc. Also, it was very difficult to read as it was rather... long, so it has been broken up into several sections that will become FAQs in their own right. Still, while DotA:Allstars reigns supreme as one of the most played games on Battle.net, there are still people attracted to the main online game. This is who the FAQ is for: those brave souls willing to risk it in a melee map. TO THE DEATH! [Awesome.] 8/21/2005 - Version Alpha - The madness begins, after a summer of having worked at a bank. I am also legally old enough to drink, and as such, *legally* insane. Well, enough about me. On with the show! <<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>> ^*^*^*^*^ 2.) lolz omg wut is a neutral hero? Kan I kill it?! *^*^*^*^* <<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>> (Please, PLEASE refer to Dandude's awesome terminology FAQ located under the Frozen Throne FAQs and Guides here at www.GameFAQs.com. If you do not, some of this language might scare or disorient you.) The titling for this section comes because, quite frankly, the majority of the Battle.net population is comprised of idiots, lowlifes, and degenerates. Notice that I, the pot, am calling the kettle black, but I'm sorely offended by the fact that opponents submit hacking reports just because they wonder how their units keep missing while bubbles are floating out of their heads (yes, I have had someone attempt a hacking report because I used a hero skill.) But maybe you're new to the Warcraft 3 expansion. Well, here's the concept of where neutral heroes come into play: a neutral hero is a mercenary hero that, provided you own an altar, can be hired out of a Frozen Throne exclusive building called the tavern. At this tavern, eight heroes of various races are boozing around, just waiting to go get beat up for a pithy amount of resources. To select a hero from a tavern, you must first build an altar at your base. Once this is completed (or, more recommended, while it is in the process of building, move ANY unit under your control (or a partners control, if shared control has been enabled) near the tavern (a building with a large, red roof, usually equidistant from any of the starting locations.) When the unit is within "shopping distance" of the tavern, the grayed-out portraits of the eight heroes within will become vibrant and colorful (providing you built that altar!) Click on the portrait of the hero you wish to hire. There are some things to note about selection of a hero from the tavern, however! They are as follows. 1.) While the hero is free if it is your first hero, hiring a neutral hero as your second hero requires a small amount of additional lumber on top of the original cost (compared to if you hired a hero from your own altar, where you only need 425 gold and 100 wood.) 2.) YOU CANNOT HIRE A NEUTRAL HERO WITHOUT AN ALTAR AND A SUFFICIENT SUPPLY OF FOOD. 3.) If you wish to hire a neutral hero as your second or third hero, you must be on the appropriate "tier" level (refer to Dandude's terminology FAQ. 4.) Heroes that are hired from a tavern appear INSTANTLY upon selection. Make sure you do not miss the proper hotkey or portrait, or else you may wind up with a Beastmaster when you wanted a Naga. 5.) While heroes appear instantly from the tavern, they CAN NOT be hired for the first few minutes of a game. It takes almost exactly the same amount of time to immediately build an altar upon the start of a game and train a hero from the completed altar as it does for the neutral heroes to become available in the tavern. Fancy that... having to wait for them to finish their drinks before they'll die for you. 6.) YOU CANNOT HIRE A NEUTRAL HERO WITHOUT AN ALTAR AND A SUFFICIENT SUPPLY OF FOOD. The tavern provides the ability to hold off on production of your altar for a little while, but you *still* need a completed one. Be sure you have the 5 food necessary for hiring by building that extra farm/moon well/ziggurat/burrow! 7.) The tavern isn't just used for hiring neutral heroes. Dead heroes (both neutral and racial) have the option to revive their spirits (pun intended) at the tavern! Heroes revived in this manner revive instantly, but there are several pitfalls from using this alternative. First off, a hero that is revived at the tavern is rehired instantly with half of his/her maximum health, and NO MANA. Second, it requires a LOT of resources to revive a hero instantly there, and it escalates depending on the level. Just for example, and this is off the top of my head, but I believe that reviving a level 1 hero at the tavern requires the same amount of gold and lumber as it costs to train a second hero from an altar (425G100L.) It is obviously VERY inefficient to revive level 1 heroes at a tavern except in desperation - this feature is best reserved if you were horrible enough/unlucky enough to lose a level 9 or 10 hero to an opponent. Now that we've covered the basics of the tavern, let's cover the basics of a neutral hero. One statement describes the usage of a neutral hero - ALL NEUTRAL HEROES ARE SITUATIONAL. While true even for the racial heroes, THEY ARE *SITUATIONAL.* For example, it is POINTLESS to get, say, a Pit Lord for your first hero as an Undead, since his main purposes (area damage and a [poor] tanking job) are overshadowed by the abilities of the other Undead heroes. A Lich will cover the AOE needs with Frost Nova better than a Pit Lord's Rain of Fire (which has poorer range, does not slow targets, and requires multiple waves to hit for full effectiveness,) whereas a Crypt Lord will utilize impale and spiked carapace to SIGNIFICANTLY reduce the amount of damage he takes. Instead, try COMBINING the neutral heroes to fill gaps in your army. Again, let's consider the Undead. Suppose one of their main problems is the quick onset of enemy necromancers from an opposing UD? Hire a dark ranger to silence both the necromancers and enemy obsidian statues, then utilize black arrow to pick off any Raise Dead bait. While she is performing her duties, use a Lich to Frost Nova any enemies focusing her, heal her with a Death Knight's Death Coil, or utilize the Dreadlord's Vampiric Aura to ensure a bit of protection for Dark Minions raised from Black Arrow. The trick is to find the neutral hero of your choice's niche in the army and run with it. With the possible exceptions of Tinker and the Pandaren Brewmaster, few of these heroes can effectively be utilized as your primary hero. Still, a little variety never hurts, right? With all that said, let's get the actual meat of the FAQ completed: individual analysis (analyses? Analysises?) of the Dark Ranger. First comes an introduction to the character, an in-depth look at his/her abilities, an in-depth look at her pros and cons, an in-depth look at how she can be effectively utilized during online play, with a few dashes of tips for use. This FAQ will "borrow" information from Blizzard's official Warcraft 3 Expansion site, www.blizzard.com/war3x As a final notice for this introduction before we get started... all of the information FIRST provided is based off of MY personal experiences and opinions. You are welcome to agree or disagree, or even make some submissions! Any other views that are not redundant are very much appreciated (except if they're stupid, in which they are appreciated after being cleansed in a vat of boiling oil sprayed with Lysol and Febreeze.) <<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>> ^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^* 3.) Dark Ranger - An Overview *^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^ <<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>> "So I went on a job interview the other day, and they were like 'ohh, what's that smell?' And I was, like, 'oh, sorry, that's me.' And then they figured I wouldn't be able to fit in with the other employees because they're living, and I'm, y'know, dead, so I wouldn't be a team player? But then I said that I could work 24 hours and they were like 'Allllright! You can work the graveyard shift!' The Dark Ranger is a small-sized, crafty manipulator of enemy forces. From her own hatred of the living, this undead elf has risen from the ranks of being a mere banshee and now can inflict the shadowy fears of death in other opponents, causing them to animate into skeletons when they fall under the pressures of her Black Arrows. With her will, she can also halt enemy magicians from uttering the incantations necessary to perform any spells in a circular area, or she can steal the very essence of life from a target, replacing her own vitals. Experienced dark rangers use allure from beyond the grave to Charm their enemies into defection. The Dark Ranger was, at first, the only available Neutral hero during Frozen Throne's beta period. Still, with the other seven heroes to choose from, this agility-based hero is still a solid choice. She has a fairly large range on her attack, compounded with a fast move speed. Best of all, she can provide herself with a tank with a little bit of micromanagement! Also, out of ANY hero in the Frozen Throne, or heck, even any of the other heroes, she is my personal favorite. ======================= ===DARK RANGER STATS=== ======================= (Please note that all stats are disregarding other factors such as auras, tomes, or items.) Primary Attribute: Agility Attack Range: 60 Base HP: 550 Level 10 HP: 975 Base MP: 225 Level 10 MP: 570 Base strength: 18 Level 10 strength: 35 Base agility: 21 Level 10 agility: 34 Base intelligence: 15 Level 10 intelligence: 38 Base damage: 1d11+22 Level 10 damage: 1d11+35 Base armor: 4 Level 10 armor: 8 Base attack speed: 1 ranged attack every 2.42 seconds Move speed: 320 (Fast) Special attributes: UNDEAD - Being Undead, the Dark Ranger can be harmed by Holy Light and can be healed by Death Coil. Friendlies can not use Holy Light on a Dark Ranger because of this, and likewise, enemies can use a Death Coil against her. =========================== ===DARK RANGER ABILITIES=== =========================== ~~~~~~~~~ ~SILENCE~ ~~~~~~~~~ Mana Cost: 75 Cooldown: 15 seconds. - After selecting this skill, a targeting circle will appear. Upon placement of the circle, the Dark Ranger moves into range (maximum range of 90) and places a debuff on every enemy non-magic-immune unit or hero which prevents magical abilities from being used. Passive skills and auras will still remain in effect. Increasing levels of Silence improve the duration and area of effect (mana cost and range remain constant.) - Silence can be dispelled. Silence lasts for half duration (I.e. 8 seconds instead of 16 at level 1) on heroes or units with spell resistance. LEVEL 1 - 16 second duration. Area of effect (AoE) - 20. LEVEL 2 - 20 second duration. AoE - 27.5 LEVEL 3 - 24 second duration. AOE - 35 EARTHSHAKER'S NOTES - Fast cooldown - with the exception of heroes or units with spell resistance, a Dark Ranger can constantly keep a group of enemies Silenced, even at level 1. - Interrupts channeling - any ability that requires concentration, such as Blizzard, Stampede, Earthquake, Starfall, etc., will stop functioning after Silence is placed on it. - Because of its area targeting ability, units may be moved out of range of Silence before it fires off. Take care that your Ranger is in range before targeting, or she will waste time wandering to the targeted location. - Silence's mana cost, while relatively low, may become a problem if you constantly need to use it in conjunction with Black Arrow. She will usually have enough for one or two, but in a large melee, mana can run out at the worst time. Consider carrying a mana potion (200 gold) to remedy this. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~ ~BLACK ARROW~ ~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Mana Cost: 6 Cooldown: N/A AUTOCAST ABILITY - Right clicking the icon will allow this spell to activate automatically. - When Black Arrow is activated, a dark aura surrounds every arrow the Dark Ranger fires from her bow. This aura deals additional damage to the targeted enemy, and if the enemy dies within a short time of being struck by one, it will become a Dark Minion under the Dark Ranger's control. LEVEL 1 - 2 additional damage per shot, creates a 215 HP Lesser Dark Minion (9.5 average damage per hit, attacks once every two seconds.) LEVEL 2 - 10 additional damage per shot, creates a 290 HP Dark Minion (16 average damage per hit, attacks once every two seconds.) LEVEL 3 - 20 additional damage per shot, creates a 405 HP Greater Dark Minion (17.5 average damage per hit, attacks once every two seconds.) EARTHSHAKER'S NOTES - This is the Dark Ranger's essential skill. Additional damage for a low mana cost is great, and if you are skilled with using the alt button to examine low HP units based on their health bars, you can quickly pick off dying units to create a skeleton army. - Caution should be taken using this ability around enemies with dispel. If you see a priest, destroyer, spirit walker, or an approaching wisp, consider turning off Black Arrow to avoid feeding your opponents the EXP obtained from killing Dark Minions. Remember that Dark Minions give the same EXP as a level 2/3/4 creep (depending on the level of Black Arrow. Consider Silencing the offending tauren or blood elves, if you can catch an entire group of them. If the dispeller is a destroyer, you should take it down BEFORE using the black arrow! If you don't want to turn it off, you can always take potshots at an enemy hero, as the added damage bonus is wonderful. ~~~~~~~~~~~~ ~LIFE DRAIN~ ~~~~~~~~~~~~ Mana Cost: 75 Cooldown: 8 seconds - When Life Drain is targeted on an enemy, the Dark Ranger moves within 50 range and starts siphoning green energy out of the targeted enemy (who knew we were all squishy, glowing, and green on the inside?) As the enemy loses this energy, it loses HP, which is transferred over to the Dark Ranger, healing her if she is damaged. CHANNELING ABILITY - The Dark Ranger cannot perform any other actions while casting this spell to maintain its full effect. Abilities such as Sleep or Ensnare will stop the effect of this spell. SPECIAL NOTE: If the targeted enemy moves beyond a range of 80, the spell will abruptly terminate. LEVEL 1 - 25 HP transferred per second. LEVEL 2 - 40 HP transferred per second. LEVEL 3 - 55 HP transferred per second. EARTHSHAKER'S NOTES - I'm not really a big fan of this spell. It's excellent in theory, really, but it's overshadowed by her other two primary skills in most cases. The only situation I would ever pick Life Drain over Silence is if I've already been using Silence for the match and the opponent stopped using casters altogether. I would buy a tome of retraining at this point and invest the Silence points into LD. - It CAN be a great hero killer spell, since the hero resistance factor seems to be weak on here, but the problem I find with it is that everything Life Drain can do a Black Arrow can do better in terms of damage. Really, it'd only be useful for healing the ranger if you have no other options, which you should as every race (Priests for Human, Witch Doctors and a Shadow Hunter for Orcs, Death Knight for the Undead, and... er... Moon Wells for the Night Elves. ~~~~~~~ ~CHARM~ ~~~~~~~ Mana cost: 150 Cooldown: 45 seconds Range: 70 ULTIMATE SKILL - Can only be obtained when the Dark Ranger's experience level is 6 or higher. - Upon using this skill, the Dark Ranger dominates the thoughts of a targeted enemy unit, causing it to defect and be controlled by the DR's commander. It is like the banshee spell Possession, with some notable differences: First, it can be used on aerial units, and second, Charm is INSTANT, while Possession is channeling, and third, the Dark Ranger does not die after using this spell. EARTHSHAKER'S NOTES - I LOVE this ultimate, but it must be used carefully. You don't just want to parade into a base with a lone Ranger and charm a tauren... no, don't even ATTEMPT that unless you're positive you can run the unit away (otherwise, you'll just feed the enemy hero experience.) It can really turn the tides of battle if used on a 4-food or higher unit (such as a knight, mountain giant without resistant skin, or my personal favorite act of larceny, a frost wyrm.) - The cooldown for Charm is VERY low - so low, in fact, that a problem will crop up from repeated use: the Dark Ranger will lack the mana necessary to cast it. A remedy for this is a 200 gold mana potion, easily purchased at the tier 2 stage of the racial shop. Also consider mana-boosting abilities of other races: the Brilliance Aura of an Archmage, Reverse Mana Siphon from a Blood Mage, or the Mana restoration ability of Obsidian Statues. Also, consider turning off autocast Black Arrow and using it only when absolutely necessary. <<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>> ^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^ 4.) Dark Ranger by Race *^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^* <<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>> ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ ~A.) HUMAN/ALLIANCE~~ ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ OVERALL While some may consider a Dark Ranger for Human a bit... crappy, they are correct, in a sense. Really, the only situation in which a Dark Ranger would be preferable would be when a Paladin is not useful. Silence, while an excellent anti-caster spell, pales in comparison to both the dispel abilities of a Priest or a Spell Breaker. In fact, Life Drain might be necessary for early healing if you obtain her first for some reason, since she can not be healed by a Paladin's Holy Light (only a slower heal from a Priest.) Consider Life Drain as a combination attack with a Blood Mage using Banish. Bear in mind that friendly dispel spells do not affect your own summon units, so do not be afraid to dispel a buff-happy group of casters in the fear that your Dark Minions will bite the dust. DO bear in mind that Dispel Magic WILL remove Silence from enemies (although Spell Steal will not!) WITH A PALADIN - Just avoid this combo. The only worthy thing coming off of a Paladin would be a Devotion Aura boosting the armor rating of the Dark Minions; however, if and when the Ranger gets focus-fired, she will need to carry additional Healing Potions or do her pitiful death scream that sounds COMPLETELY out of character with her voice. WITH A MOUNTAIN KING - This combination can function decently well as a hero killer, with a combination of Storm Bolt/Bash and Life Drain. However, every moment you Life Drain is a moment you could be picking off weak enemies with a Black Arrow; what's more, with a decent attack speed through Gloves of Haste or an attack bonus from Claws of Attack, you may be dealing MORE damage with Black Arrow on a hero than you would with that spell. If you want to experiment, you can, but the MK works better with other heroes. WITH AN ARCHMAGE - Brilliance Aura is a lovely aura, and can ensure that a Dark Ranger can Silence an additional time or two during a battle. In addition, the Dark Minions summoned from Black Arrow make an excellent addition to a Water Elemental. Just be wary on a purge/dispel- happy opponent with this combination. WITH A BLOOD MAGE - The Blood Mage currently has the stigma of being a weak hero, and it is shown through this matchup. Flamestrike can not be decently linked to any of the Dark Ranger's spells unless she Life Drains from one direction while he casts Flamestrike from the other, and is just as likely to nuke Dark Minions as it is enemies. Still, an interesting combination from this hero link-up is combining a Dark Ranger's Drain with a Blood Mage's Mana Siphon, ESPECIALLY if coming from two different directions. If you must use this combo, consider casting Banish on a hero or strong unit, then cast Life Drain on the Banished unit. Make sure to replenish the Ranger's mana on occasion with a Reverse Siphon Mana (leave enough for Banish, however.) UTILIZING THE ARCANE VAULT'S ITEMS - The Dark Ranger can definitely get away with not having to use Mana Potions if a Blood Mage or Archmage is on the battlefield, but keep a lesser clarity potion on hand during the early game in case you need a boost traveling from, say, one creep camp to another. It's useful for her to carry a Staff of Sanctuary also, ESPECIALLY if she reaches level 6. Using Invisibility on her and a sorceress, waltzing into an enemy base, and charming something like a Chimera or a Tauren and sending it back home with the staff JUST before having Invisibility recast by the sorceress and sneaking back out leads to some priceless comments along the lines of "omg u hor give dat back!1" Oh, and as with every race for the Dark Ranger, do NOT purchase the race's orb (in this case, the fire orb.) First, the fire orb SUCKS, and second off, an activated Black Arrow will override the Orb's effect. Thus, it is USELESS. USELESS, I SAY! ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ ~B.) ORC/HORDE~ ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ OVERALL The Dark Ranger's Life Drain ability, while seeming subpar using other races, really shines in a matchup with Orc. Use immobilization tactics, utilizing abilities like Ensnare, Stasis Wards, or a Tauren Chieftain's War Stomp to ensure the opponent will stay put. Dark Minions can replace Wolves as scouts and aid in buffing up the usually small (but beefy) Orc army in the early game, and since Spirit Walkers are something of a no-show despite their usefulness, Silence provides a bit of necessary anti-casting should the need arise. really has no practical use in this matchup with the exception of immobilization tactics like Ensnare, Stasis Wards, or a combination with a Tauren Chieftain's War Stomp. WITH A FAR SEER - While a great hero on his own, the Far Seer really can't do anything useful with a Dark Ranger. Dark Minions can scout just as effectively as Feral Spirits, while Chain Lightning has the nasty tendency to kill off weakened enemies that you may otherwise be picking off with Black Arrow. The only benefits he has over her are that his wolves are more damaging and he can carry the awesome racial orb. WITH A SHADOW HUNTER - This makes for an interesting combination, one you might consider retraining your Dark Ranger from. Hexing a target during/before Life Drain will make its movement speed HORRIBLE so the target will not be able to get out of range effectively, and where the Shadow Hunter provides powerful glass cannons for summons, the Dark Ranger provides meat to prevent the enemies from reaching them. Healing Wave can easily keep both heroes alive, too, since neither hero has high HP. WITH A TAUREN CHIEFTAIN - Awesome. Endurance Aura's attack and movement increase will ensure that, except in the cases of Stun or a one-track-minded Death Knight, an enemy can NOT chase down the littlest archer. He provides excellent tanking support with high HP, and can freeze a group of fleeing units with War Stomp, allowing the Ranger to pick off weak units with Black Arrow. If you wanted to use the TC because of Shockwave, consider picking a different hero combination, because with the Dark Ranger, she cannot provide AoE spam which seems to be effective in larger team games. WITH A BLADEMASTER - Personally, I hate the Blademaster, but this combination of heroes can allow for one heck of a startling moment for an enemy. Keep him under the effects of Wind Walk outside a battle, then move close with the Dark Ranger to activate Life Drain. If the hero sticks around before his/her health starts getting lower, utilize the Backstab damage for a ridiculous amount of pain. Most likely, you will have a dead hero using this combination if the Life Drain is high enough. UTILIZING THE VOODOO LOUNGE'S ITEMS - ALWAYS carry a Scroll of Speed - it grants the burst of speed necessary for her and her skeletons to chase down fleeing units or heroes, and can also allow for a quick getaway should the need arise. Healing Salve is a must for any Orc player, as is the Orb of Lightning; however, you must avoid, at all costs, putting this on a Dark Ranger - while the orb is EXCELLENT, it will A.) be overridden by Black Arrow when Black Arrow is in effect, and B.) purge any silenced targets if you use it with Black Arrow deactivated. Removing debuffs that you cast is NOT a fun thing to do. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ ~C.) NIGHT ELF/SENTINEL~ ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ OVERALL Being a former elf, you'd expect the Dark Ranger to be excellent with this superior-range race. You'd be right ;). The Night Elf army is fragile by nature with poor anti-casting abilities, which the Dark Ranger can remedy easily by using Dark Ranger to provide meat shields and silence to stop the nasty evil spell casters. You'd still run into problems due to Night Elves overall weakness to units with siege damage, too, so make sure you use her ranged attack and groups of skeletons to focus on any stray mortar teams or demolishers first. The only thing a DR CAN'T provide is healing, which becomes limited for Night Elves until their Moon Wells become improved with a T3 upgrade (or a Keeper of the Grove gets his ultimate. As a side note, if you're smart enough to ACTUALLY utilize wisps dispel capabilities, please, for the love of all that is holy, DON'T use them on silenced enemies unless you're positive his/her mana will be damaged enough to prevent the more damaging of spells (Inner Fire/Bloodlust/Polymorph/Cripple/Slow/etc.) WITH A WARDEN - This combination would mainly be used for assassination. Have the Warden blink in front of a fleeing hero or strong unit's path, and shadow strike it. Use the movement speed decrease to focus Black Arrow shots or Life Drain on it. Fan of Knives can also be used, if the Warden has the mana to spare (which, let's face it - without mana potions, she usually doesn't.) Sadly, this combination lacks what a good elf needs - a steadily reliable tank for absorbing damage and drawing fire from archers. Consider a different hero combination. WITH A DEMON HUNTER - Despite everyone else IDOLIZING this hero, I think he's rather subpar in general... being supported by a Dark Ranger, on the other hand, becomes demi-godlike. Silence and Mana Burn used in conjunction punish the use of ANY casters, and while Immolation is terrible, focusing both the demon hunter's strong melee abilities (high attack with evasion to reduce damage) and the Dark Ranger's Black Arrow on low Max HP units such as Ghouls or enemy archers can quickly form a skeleton army. Of last notice is Metamorphosis... that Chaos ranged attack is godlike. Using it with Black Arrow will completely WRECK any opposition. WITH A PRIESTESS OF THE MOON - A Priestess of the Moon is a pseudo- assassin with an emphasis on ranged damage. And.. Hey, guess what, the Dark Ranger is a ranged hero! Trust me on this one - a Black Arrow / Searing Arrow / Trueshot Aura combination is just plain BRUTAL for the enemy on the receiving end. Even without immobilization, these two heroes can make short work of any non-magic-immune unit out there. Scout can also be used to keep an eye on the opponent, but it's really not worth it to pass up this massive damage bonus, and besides, Dark Minions can always double as scouts. WITH A KEEPER OF THE GROVE - These heroes work well enough together, I suppose. The combination of Entangling Roots and Life Drain works surprisingly well on non-heroes, but should not be attempted on enemy heroes at low levels of Entangle (it would barely last 3 seconds, if that.) Another interesting combination, providing the opponent is lacking area dispel capabilities, is a Dark Minion / Treant swarm. Experiment, and have fun! Just don't get Thorns Aura by conscious choice unless the Keeper is above level 7; as of the time of this writing, it sucks. UTILIZING THE ANCIENT OF WONDER'S ITEMS - Unless the opponent doesn't yet know you're an elf (if you picked Random, that is) try to keep using Moon Stones often. They're cheap, and they allow your moon wells to refill a tiny bit, helping to heal a hurt DR without Life Drain. Try to avoid using the Moon Wells if your mana is low - use the lesser clarity potion first. A Staff of Preservation works just as well as the Human's staff of Sanctuary - pick one up after level 6, sneak into a base, and Charm a unit. Afterwards, immediately send it home using the staff. Isn't petty theft fun? As with every race, however, DON'T USE THE VENOM ORB. It does not stack with Black Arrow, dangit! ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ ~D.) UNDEAD/SCOURGE~ ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ The earlier comment for elves goes for the Undead, too. You figure she'd be an excellent addition to the Undead? You'd be right ;). Undead are the only units without a dispel until tier 3(.25, if you consider researching the upgrade at tier 3 an additional portion of a tier.) Black Arrow makes excellent tanks for the essential tier 1.5 unit, the crypt fiend, especially if you're vehemently anti-necromancer (like me, for some reason) As for Life Drain, it really has no situations in which it would be useful. If you're going to use a Ranger as Undead (which is an alternative, if you're tired of the Undead's awesome heroes) then leave that ability well alone until level 8. WITH A DEATH KNIGHT - The DK, regarded as the essential Undead hero, is a decent choice for a hero to use with a DR, as all of his abilities nicely complement hers. Death Coil provides healing without the usage of Life Drain, and if the DK himself gets hurt, he can always Death Pact a Dark Minion or two. Unholy Aura enhances the Dark Ranger's running speed, which is excellent if she needs to flee in a hurry. The only abilities that don't work well together with a DR, in fact, is Animate Dead - Black Arrow consumes enemy corpses. If you intend to use that horrible ultimate, you can, by all means! Just turn off Black Arrow for a bit beforehand so you don't wind up raising two stray ghoul corpses, or something. WITH A LICH - I love the Lich, but I dislike how he pushes my favorite hero into the role of a support whore. Sure, you can nuke a target you're attacking with Black Arrow with a Frost Nova, creating a minion, but what is the Lich going to provide if either he or the Ranger get attacked? Neither can heal each other except if the Ranger gets Life Drain (just don't.) In reality, neither hero should be getting hit by melee forces, but if they are, and if you INSIST on using this hero combination, consider investing in a point of Frost Armor to run away if the need arises. By the way, don't underestimate Dark Ritual on a Dark Minion. While it will not replenish a lot (if any) mana at level 1 Dark Ritual on a Lesser Dark minion, try a level 3 ritual on a Level 3 minion and see what happens. Enjoy your unlimited Frost Nova. WITH A DREADLORD - No. Just don't. These heroes work HORRIBLY together. Sleep might be immobilization, but casting it on something the Ranger is attacking turns her attention away. Sleep might have a practical use here in the form of skeleton surround, but if you're surrounding an area attacking hero like a Tauren Chieftain or a Mountain King, you're just asking to feed it experience. Carrion swarm doesn't work too well in this combination either, since the Dark Ranger doesn't have any AoE damage skills, and finally, while Vampiric helps the Minions a little bit, it's nothing too wonderful unless you combine BOTH a Ranger and a Dreadlord with a Carrion Beetles using Crypt Lord. Finally, Infernal overshadows Dark Minions, and I don't like that. :-(. Dreadlord rocks otherwise, just for the love of all that is (un?)holy, don't use him with a Dark Ranger. WITH A CRYPT LORD - This matchup is a maybe. The Crypt Lord's whole focus point is to be a tank, and while the Ranger's Dark Minions can help with that task, he really does it better with Spiked Carapace and Carrion Beetles. Still, if the idea of mass summons is feasible (I.e. you're fighting a night elf far from base, you're rushing another Undead, etc.) you might want to give this combination a try. Try to avoid using Impale in conjunction with Life Drain (if you even use it at ALL, which you really shouldn't as an Undead) as Impale will interrupt the middle of a casting of Drain. UTILIZING THE TOMB OF RELICS'S ITEMS - She's undead, and so are her minions, so if you're sitting around doing nothing for some ungodly reason after a battle, consider bring a cheap sacrificial scroll along for some added healing. Also, do NOT underestimate the potential of a Dark Ranger with Minions and a Scroll of healing. However, do not forget, and I will repeat myself here again... NO ORBS FOR A RANGER. It DOES NOT WORK, NO MATTER HOW GOOD THE ORB OF CORRUPTION MAY BE. <<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>> ^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^ 5.) Final Summary ^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^* <<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>> Bear in mind that the Dark Ranger is NOT BUILT FOR ARMY SLAUGHTERING. If you want something like that, go for a Chainwave orc hero combination or the mass Human AoE triple threat of doom (Blizzard, Flamestrike, Rain of Fire.) The Dark Ranger is NOT MEANT to absorb damage - that's the job of her summons. She might have decently high armor at higher levels, but if a melee force starts chasing after her, run them in circles. Try to avoid hero nukers too, unless you can pick up a health boosting item or two somewhere. In fact, there is an advantage on your side: out of ANY hero in Warcraft 3: Frozen Throne, the Dark Ranger has the smallest collision size (meaning she can fit through a gap of units that a larger hero, i.e. a Keeper of the Grove, would not be able to.) The only time a hero will EVER have a smaller collision size than her is if A.) a hero is under the effects of Hex and B.) if a Blademaster or Wind portion of a Pandaren Brewmaster's ultimate uses Wind Walk and receives a ludicrous zero collision size. In case it hasn't been stressed enough in the racial matchups, DO NOT USE ORBS WITH A DARK RANGER. Black Arrow is awesome, and its awesome levels of awesomeness will awesomely... knock out the abilities of an orb, even if said orb is equally awesome. HOWEVER, Claws of Attack are excellent, and even recommended, because every damage point dealt is another greater chance of raising a Dark Minion. With the races, if you're one for variety, it is wise as either a Night Elf or an Undead to choose her as a supporting hero (and heck, she even makes a great primary hero with the elves!) Orcs and Humans should look elsewhere unless they're playing her for fun or desperately need some additional anti-caster backup. <<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>> ^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^ 6.) Repeat Copyright ^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^* <<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>>><<<>> Warcraft III: The Frozen Throne Specialty FAQ - Dark Ranger Hero. Version 1.0 Started on 8/21/2005 by Earthshaker, finally submitted on 12/29/2006 Copyright 2005-2006 by Earthshaker (Honatuto@yahoo.com) Anyone may reproduce this FAQ electronically, but do not sell it for money. If you wish to place this on your website, TOUGH BEANS. The *only* place this walkthrough will EVER be published is www.GameFAQs.com (or its affiliates.) If you host without my permission or GameFAQs, you are hosting without GameFAQs's express legal consent, and I'm fairly certain that the legal repercussions for that are, at best, undesirable. You can also email your INTELLIGENT comments, questions, gripes, suggestions, submissions, love letters, etc. to the above address; however, I have a special Email now set up that I check every so often regarding video game help. This email is Honatuto (at) yahoo (dot) com (spammers begone!) [And now, for some parting words of wisdom from a fellow gamer -] "Did your eyes have a circumcision? BECAUSE IT APPEARS YOU LACK FORESIGHT!!1"