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Hello again, everyone! Today, I'd like to talk about Maiev. The Warden was released on February 6th, 2018, but didn't see any action in the professional scene until the Western Clash. So far, we've seen her in both Clashes, as well as games in Week 6. I'd like to take a look at the new hero's standing so far in professional play, including some head-to-head matchups and heroes that have paired well with them. Keep in mind that, as is always true of HGC games, some of this data will be skewed due to the differences in skill between teams. No hero has yet managed to completely overcome a skill deficit between teams or regions. I will try to take this into account in my writings.
Hero Pick/Ban and Win Rate - The Raw Data
Here are Maiev's hero stats at a glance:
As the above data and graph clearly show, Maiev has been an absolute powerhouse....whenever teams have been foolish enough to let her slip through the ban phase, that is. She has enjoyed a 100% popularity rate across both the Western and Eastern Clash, and only dropped off very slightly in Week 6 in HGC NA/EU/KR. It's safe to say that this dominance is probably a large part of the reason why she recently received another wave of nerfs in the patch on March 21st. Her win rate across both Clashes sits at a 65%, which is a bit deceptive because of China's record on her (0-2). Without their losses included, Maiev would be seated at a 17-7 record from both Clashes, or a 71% win rate! That's an absolutely crazy success story.
Her win rate has dropped off quite a bit since then, however, now sitting at a 25-22 record with Week 6 games from NA, EU and KR included. That's a 53% win rate. This is primarily due to a number of weaker teams selecting her in the draft. In Week 6, the team with the lower rank going into the match had a 0-9 record on Maiev. This shows that while Maiev is a powerful ally to have, she still isn't necessarily powerful enough to overcome larger gaps in skill between teams.
Maiev's Priority in the Draft
Here's a look at where Maiev is prioritized in the draft:
And in a big surprise to....well, no one, Maiev is primarily first ban / first pick material. In both Clashes, 71% of her popularity went into the first ban phase, with the remaining 29% going almost entirely into the first pick slot. Since then, her play in Week 6 has changed things just a bit, as she saw a handful of picks in the second phase of the draft.
Head-to-Head: Who Can Beat Maiev?
Here's a table of some of the most popular heroes to be selected against Maiev. Before you look at the table below, which one do you think was the most successful? Well, you might not be surprised with one of the winners, but the other is perhaps a bit more of a surprise. Without further ado:
Yes, you've read that right. Out of all of the heroes most commonly selected against Maiev, the only assassin to achieve a winning record against her was Tracer. The exact sort of hero that Maiev was supposedly designed to defeat. So what's happening here? Well, it's a combination of factors. First, Tracer herself was pretty dominant in HGC play during this same tournament run. Tracer had a 58% win rate between the Western Clash and Eastern Clash games put together, and an 81% pick/ban across those same games, so she was a high priority hero that was doing very well to begin with. But it also goes beyond that, into things that can't be quantified from the data alone. The larger factor that is perhaps being overlooked is the fact that Maiev was originally pitched as a hero who is strong against mobility heroes, and yet we've seen no indication of this in professional play to date, as her true strength tended to be against groups of largely immobile heroes unable to get away from her tethers. Heroes like Tracer seemingly have no trouble with her at all, at least, not in the game's present state. And while Genji's win rate against her is below 50%, it's not all that far below the mark, and is actually higher than his overall win rate of 42% across the same period of games.
The only other hero to beat out Maiev more than 50% of the time is Stukov, who has a dominant 73% win rate against the hero. Again, however, this may not necessarily be indicative of Stukov as a counter to Maiev. With so many games played in Week 6 that featured Maiev being selected by the lower ranked team (and losing), it's very possible that his win rate against her is that high simply because the stronger team picked Stukov against her as part of their pre-existing composition strategy, and their victory drove Stukov's win rate against Maiev higher. We mustn't forget that this is only the results from two tournaments and a single week of regular season play, and that we might see other trends emerge in future weeks of HGC play. This is something we'll have to keep a close eye on.
Duo-Queue: Who Do You Pair Up With Maiev?
Let's switch gears for a moment and talk about which heroes made good team mates to Maiev. Here is a table showing off all of her most popular duo-queue heroes. Which ones were the most successful?
Well, as it turns out, when you're a hero with a high win rate, a lot of heroes are pretty successful when played alongside you. So to keep from making this any longer than it already is, let's quickly go through some of the more interesting tidbits. The one that stands out the most is Rehgar's impressive 9-1 streak when paired with Maiev. Rehgar has surged in recent pro play, with a 54% win rate between the two Clashes, and a 63% win rate when you include Week 6 figures. Other heroes that are pairing particularly well with Maiev are Tyrael and Garrosh, who are both melee heroes that can help enable her in battle. Tyrael's shields and dive make him a good partner to Maiev, and Garrosh's throws and stuns can help Maiev achieve resets more easily. We'll have to see if these trends continue as we head into Week 7 and beyond!
The Final Word
As the data above has clearly shown, Maiev has dominated the tournament meta so much that she's often the first hero banned out, and when she's not, she's scooped up and played with fairly reliable success. The upcoming changes might help to nudge her down to a healthy level...or perhaps they, too, will not be enough to stop Maiev's eternal hunt for wins throughout the Nexus. However, if nothing else, at least one thing has certainly proven to be effective against Maiev....forts.
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