Let's have a moment of silence for Ring of Aquila in patch 7.20, as we ponder the swath of changes to Dota's items. The patch introduced five new items--Kaya's combinations, Holy Locket, Ring of Tarrasque, and the new Crown--and reworked some of our most beloved trinkets.
Phase Boots can now be bought in the side shop, and Treads now gives attack damage instead of movement speed bonus. The Phase Boots change seems intended as a quality of life buff, giving players the constant phase bonus rather than an active item ability. Remember when the active ability was cancelled by using spells or items? It was another layer of complications--or skill, depending on your point of view--to consider when using the item. Then again, we're still Tread switching.
Slow heroes will remain slow, as patch 7.20 changes movement speed bonuses across the board from adding flat amounts to percentage bonuses calculated from a hero's base movement speed. It may seem trivial at first, for example Boots of Speed on Treant gives him about +40ms vs the +50 on Pugna, but Dota is a game where the smallest margins matter. Buffs in minute amounts, from base damage, armor, and movement speed, have shifted heroes back and forth from viability.
Players now have two items that Kaya can build into: Kaya and Sange and Yasha and Kaya. Since its introduction, Kaya fit on very few heroes. Without a larger item to build towards, Kaya needed to be stat efficient on its own, and it seemed like Storm Spirit was the only hero who could make the most use out of the item. In 7.20, the item effectively got nerfed. It became more expensive and its spell amplification reduced from 10% to 8%, perhaps to offset the casual Null Talismans (+3% spell amplification) players are stacking.
Maim is now gone in favor of Status Resistance, a relatively new mechanic to Dota that Valve has experimented with. It used to be part of Strength's quirks, and then it was removed. So far, the mechanic seems counter-intuitive when it comes to team fights. Targets of Invoker's Tornado can now fall at different times, disrupting follow up combos. Earthshaker will have issues chaining his spells, should one of his targets have Sange and Yasha. But perhaps that's the point.
With TP scrolls now having its own dedicated slot, that frees up more room for players to stack the new Bracer, Wraith Band, and Null Talisman. For 45 extra gold, the items add one extra base stat and respectively 6% Magic Resistance, 7% Attack Speed, or 3% Spell Amplification. While they no longer build into future items (Aquila, Veil, Drum), they have enough value to at least double up on for most core heroes.
Headdress Recipe reduced from 300 to 175
Recipe increased from 900 to 950
Mana restore increased from 135 to 160
Heal increased from 275 to 300 Mana restore increased from 160 to 200
Now gives the +2 Stats from its components
This patch introduced Ring of Tarrasque, Holy Locket, and Crown. Holy Locket is the biggest item here, which offers much value for its cost at 2650 gold. Since it also buffs self regeneration, its a natural core item for Necrophos, but it's also a boon to support heroes like Dazzle and Witch Doctor, who benefit from its healing buff and its defensive stats.
Arcane Boots essentially received a 19% buff to its mana restore, and healing items across the board are cheaper. Mekansm is now 75 gold cheaper, and note that Pipe of Insight didn't receive a corresponding cost increase to offset the Headdress cost reduction, so now its 125 gold cheaper. And now that the default aura range is 1200 (from 900), the change also applies to actives from Mekansm, Crimson Guard, Pipe, and Greaves.
Can now override Slark's Pounce
This was a much needed change, as Slark is now the 3rd most picked hero and 3rd winningest hero in 7.20. With Pounce's new Leashed state, you can no longer reflexively TP when a Slark tries to pick you off. Force Staff breaking Pounce is small recourse for support heroes, but given the way that Slark is dominating pubs, it won't be enough.