Dota 2 Phantom Lancer Guide – Tips, Counters and More

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Dota 2 Phantom Lancer Guide – Tips, Counters and More

This Dota 2 Phantom Lancer guide will give you tips and tricks on how to use it.

If you are looking for a late game carry that is incredibly hard to deal with, this Phantom Lancer Dota 2 guide is for you. Known as one of the strongest heroes in the game, PL is a hidden gem in almost any meta. However, the hero has a few weaknesses, which is why this guide will address everything people need to be aware of.

Phantom Lancer has 3.3 armor, 285 movement speed, and deals between 52-62 damage. Of course, this is a melee Agility hero that is almost always the team’s carry, but there are instances where the hero can be played as a mid-laner. Most people probably have a lot of questions, so let’s see what makes PL such an interesting option.


Choosing the appropriate Phantom Lancer Dota 2 build can be incredibly important for your team because you will be its main weapon. That said, here’s more info about the skills you need to know.

  • Spirit Lance – This ability allows Phantom Lancer to deal up to 280 damage and slow down an enemy by 35% for 3.8s. Furthermore, the ability will spawn an illusion for up to 8s that deals 20% damage and takes 400% damage.
  • Doppelganger – After a 1s delay from using it, Phantom Lancer will appear with 2 illusions that last for 8s and deal 20% damage. This ability can be used to dodge certain spells from the enemy.
  • Phantom Rush – This passive ability allowed Phantom Lancer and his illusions to get 40 additional agility and rush to their target. The agility bonus lasts for 1.5s.
  • Juxtapose – This ultimately allows the hero a 50% chance to get an illusion. The illusion itself also has an 8% chance to trigger an illusion (the hero can have up to 10 in total. The illusions deal 22% damage.

Getting a Shard will allow you Juxtapose to be an active ability that makes PL invisible for 8s while also creating an illusion. During that time, the hero will get 15% extra MS. Ass for the Aghanim Scepter, the item will allow Spirit Dance to bounce twice on enemies and increases the ability’s damage and slow.

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The Dota 2 Hero, Phantom Lancer, charges into battle with his spear and sword at the ready in the official splash art from Valve

Now that you know the abilities for your Phantom Lancer Dota 2 item build, it’s time to take a look at the talents.

  • Level 10 – +8 STR or +40 Spirit Lance Damage
  • Level 15 – Spirit Lance -2s Cooldow or Phantom Rush’s Agi bonus lasts +1.5s
  • Level 20 – Juxtapose gives +10% damage or Phantom Rus has +300 Range
  • Level 25 – The hero gets a 24% Critical Strike Chance or Doppelganger has -a 4s CD

Dota 2 Phantom Lancer Guide – Tips

As mentioned, the Dota 2 Phantom Lancer build you’ll go for is really important because it will determine how you’re playing. You are almost always going to be the team’s carry, so your main job is to farm and try to land a kill or two if possible. Even though PL is not the best killer early on, he can work well with supports that have some kind of disable.

A very important skill you need to master is how to dodge abilities with your Doppelganger. This can be incredibly useful, and you can make the life of your enemies a living hell, but it requires some practice.

Another thing to remember when reading the Dota 2 Phantom Lancer Reddit is that this hero has a lot of counters. He is not something you want to pick right away, but if the hero works in the given setup, he can single-handedly win the match for his team.

Generally speaking, PL can farm the lane and the side camps with his illusions, but you should not count on that early on. The illusions are not as strong as Naga’s, so they are usually there to distract your opponents.

Speaking of distracting someone, you can always use your Doppelganger and then grab an illusion and run with it to fool your enemies. This can work exceptionally well, but you need to know what you’re doing.

Phantom Lancer Dota 2 Guide – Pros and Cons

Phantom Lancer uses his illusions to overwhelm opponents

Whether you check the Phantom Lancer Dota 2 wiki or something else, you will see the hero has a lot of pros and cons, so here are the most important ones.

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  • Hard to kill if you know what you’re doing
  • Incredibly difficult to play against if there are no counters
  • Extremely strong in the late-game
  • Can push pretty fast


  • The hero needs to be aware of counters
  • He does not farm as fast as other carries

Dota 2 Phantom Lancer Guide – Items

A quick look at Phantom Lancer Dota 2 pro tracker or the hero’s pub score reveals that people use specific items. There are a couple of solid options, so let’s take a look at them.

Starting items

Like all caries, PL needs stats and HP regen, but he may also go for a Quelling Blade.

Early game

PL’s Early Game items should include a Wraith Band, Magic Wand, and Boots of Speed/Power Treads

Mid game

In a perfect scenario, Phantom Lancer’s mid game items include Diffusal Blade and Manta Style. That said, some players can only get Yasha because if his slow farming speed.

Late game

Phantom Lancer is a beast in the late game, so he should have Manta Style, Butterfly, Heart of Tarrasque, Satanic, Monkey King Bar, Abyssal Blade, and so on. Some people like going for the Radiance build, but it is not that effective.

Phantom Lancer Dota 2 counter 

When it comes down to the Dota 2 Phantom Lancer counter, there are a few heroes you should be aware of.

  • Earthshaker – His ultimate benefits from more units, making him highly effective against Phantom Lancer.
  • Axe – Axe can kill PL’s illusions in seconds, which allows him and his team to kill PL much faster.
  • Ember Spirit – Although this pick is slightly controversial, Ember’s glass-cannon build can be pretty good against PL.
  • Legion Commander – Overwhelming Odds is really strong against PL, and once LC duels him, the latter can’t do much.

Final Thoughts

In addition to everything we mentioned, the Dota 2 Phantom Lancer skins are also some of the best in the game. This hero offers a lot to players, and he has a pretty high skill cap, making him even more fun to play.

Dota 2 Phantom Lancer Guide – Tips, Counters and More
Zlosterr has been a fan of esports for many years and mainly focuses on Dota 2. He has more than five years of experience writing Dota 2 content for numerous platforms. Besides being a passionate fan of the game, he's also played for various amateur teams.