Dota Underlords guide: Interface and controls

Jul 12 2019 5 min read

Dota Underlords guide: Interface and controls ⚡⚡⚡ Esports and gaming news, analytics, reviews on WePlay! The latest news on WePlay!

In most strategy games, you have control over units during the battles. In Dota Underlords, you only pick pieces to play and position them on a chess-like board. This article will help you learn everything you need to start playing this game even if you’ve never seen the game client ever before.

Brief interface overview

This is the normal starting game screen, let’s run down the items available to you.

  1. Hero selection. You can use your gold to purchase heroes (aka pieces) and use them during battles. Each hero has a price (they all cost 1 gold during the first round) and alliance tags (rectangles under their names).

    If you hover your mouse cursor to over a hero, it will show a question mark.

    By clicking it, you will be able to read the detailed hero stats the description of special abilities. 

  2. Reroll button. You can reroll hero packs to get additional choices. Each reroll costs 2 Gold. Default hotkey — R.
  3. Experience purchase button (aka “the pump button”). Your level determines the amount of heroes you can put on the board. Levels rise with experience, and you can purchase experience points (4 EXP per 5 Gold). Default hotkey — T
  4. Open/close hero shop, it also displays the amount of gold you currently have. Default hotkey — Space. This guide will tell you more about earning gold in Dota Underlords.
  5. Lock the shop. Saves the current shop state until the next level preparation phase. It can be useful in cases, when you can’t afford a hero you want to purchase. Default hotkey — Q.
  6. Season Info. Opens the in-game encyclopedia where you can learn most there is to know about the alliances and items of the current season.
  7. Game standings. You and your enemies are presented here. The player with the highest health is at the top. You can click on other players’ avatars to scout their board state, positioning, items and the bench.
  8. General info tab. You can use it to quickly scout the enemy boards states, net worth, items etc.

(It might look a bit intimidating at first, but it’s like the Matrix code — pretty simple once you get used to it)

P.S. We have a guide dedicated to controls.

Mobile client differences

Valve developed Dota Underlords with mobile devices in mind. You can switch between the mobile and PC mode in Settings —> Game.

Hero shop in the Mobile mode looks different, but the functionality of the buttons is the same.

Unit management and deployment

All your purchased heroes show up on the “bench”. When your board has free slots, the benched heroes get very excited and you can just drug and drop them on the board.

As mentioned before, you can put as many heroes on board, as you have levels. If the board and bench get too overcrowded, there are two things you can do:

  • Combine units. If you purchase three copies of the same unit, they combine into a more powerful 2-star unit which occupies only one slot board or bench slot. Three copies of a 2-star unit combine into an even more powerful 3-star unit.
  • Sell the extra units. As shown on the screenshot above, you can drag a unit to the left side of the interface and sell it back to the shop. You get back all the gold for 1-star units and lose some amount on selling 2- and 3-star units. Example: if u sell a 2-star Anti-Mage, you get 2 Gold back, not 3 Gold, which you paid for the three 1-star copies.

You can check out this hero levelling guide to learn more about the 2-star and 3-star units.


Each unit has at least 2 alliance tags (race and speciality). Combining a certain number of units from a single alliance produces a synergy bonus, which can impact certain units or the whole board.

Alliances play a huge role in Dota Underlords, and sometimes units with a weak body and practically useless abilities find themselves on boards due to their powerful tags.


In the first three rounds, you are matched against creeps. After every creep round, you are given a choice of 3 items. Losing a creep round results in the elimination of choice, but you still get an item.

The items are generally divided into 2 categories:

  • Equipable items. Each hero has one item slot and can use only one item.
  • Global items. Usually global items target a specific alliance, which can help you choose a strategy for the current game or bolster the units/alliances you’ve already committed to.

Check out this guide to learn more about items.

To equip an item, first open the item list to the right, and drag&drop it on the character of your choosing.

The complete list of creep rounds in Dota Underlords: 1, 2, 3, 10, 15, 20, 25, 30, 35, 40, 45, 50, 200.

Have questions left unanswered? Check out our Dota Underlords FAQ page and the beginners' guide.

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