Dota 2: How to calibrate properly?

Jan 09 2020 5 min read

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Introduction

Dota 2 is one of the biggest MOBAs in the world, and as such, it brings together people from all over the world. Regardless if you're a casual player or someone that's trying to turn pro, the chances are that you will have tons of fun playing this awesome game.

Once you learn the basics and play around 100 games, you will get the chance to start your first ranked game. Needless to say, you will probably feel a bit intimidated at first, but don't worry, we are here to help.

Let's take a look at some of the most important things that you need to know if you want to make the most out of your calibration. Keep it in mind that this is a very important process, so you need to try to take advantage of it as much as you can.

General things about the ranking system and calibration

Many of you might not now, but Dota 2 used to have only one ranking season for nearly six years.  However, after a series of Reddit posts and complaints from the community, Valve decided to add the ranking seasons. Now, each ranking season lasts for around five to six months, but sometimes it can be a little bit longer as well.

After a season finishes, you will have to do your ten calibration games to be assigned a medal. This medal corresponds to a certain MMR number that you can find on your profile. Keep it in mind that the MMR ratings change all the time, so you need to check what MMR corresponds to your medal.

Depending on when you are actually reading this article, there are two different MMRs that you can get in Dota 2. The first one is called "Core," and the second - "Support." In order to get both of them, you need to select your preferred role before you start looking for a game. Both of these different MMRs are separate from each other. However, once you get them both, your profile will display the one that's higher. This is a very strange concept that was added by Valve, but it seems like people are enjoying it.

After you unlock your MMR, you will be given a corresponding medal to it. Currently, each medal has a total of five starts that you need to go through. Every single star takes anywhere between 120 to 150 MMR to unlock, and as you know, an average win gives you +25. Once you cover all five stars of the medal, you will be automatically promoted to the next one.

An important thing to remember is that, regardless of how much you lose, you won't be relegated into a lower medal. Int he worst-case scenario, you will just lose all progress you've made so far in the current medal.

Calibrating as a Core - what to do?

When it's finally time to do your calibration games, there are many things that you need to take in mind. First, you have to decide whether you want to do the calibration games for Core or Support. Needless to say, the decisions that you need to make in-game will vary a lot, depending on that.

  • If you decide that Core is the way to go, the first thing that you have to do is to pick a hero that you're most comfortable with. This is definitely not the time for you to experiment with new heroes or something that you're not sure it works. By picking a hero that you know you can play correctly, you will be at least comfortable while playing.
  • After the initial picking process, you have one main job - to win without dying too much. Although winning is the most important thing, it is also essential not to feed while doing it. This might not be that big of an issue if you're playing safelane. However, if you have to calibrate from the offlane, things can get pretty hard.
  • Another essential thing to keep in mind is to get as much farm as possible. It's essential not only to have a batter K/D/A but also more farm then your opponent in the same position. 
  • Don't tilt, flame, or ruin the game for your team because you will regret it in the long run. After all, these ten games are critical because they will determine your matchmaking life afterward.

Calibrating as a Support - what to do?

When it's finally time to check out the supports, things are a little bit different in comparison to cores:

  • Picking your best hero also applies here, although it is also advisable to pick a support that works with your carrier. There are certain hero combinations that can be absolutely devastating, especially during the laning stage. So, if your carry player tells you that he wants to play Juggernaut, for example, you can easily pick Shadow Shaman or Lion and kill the enemy offlaner at least multiple times.
  • The most important thing to remember as a support player is not to die. It's straightforward to go on a "feeding spree," but that's not advisable, especially when you have to calibrate.
  • Always do your job correctly when it comes down to warding, rewarding, smoking, etc. After all, it is in your interest to win the game because you also need to calibrate.

Final thoughts

The calibrating process can be a bit different to understand at first because it is complicated. However, it is essential to note that, regardless of how you play, you will nearly always get calibrated around the same MMR that you had in the last season. On the other hand, if you're new to the game or you're creating a smurf account, the maximum MMR that you can obtain via the calibration is 3.500.

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