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Dire Hero
Base Stats
Base HP Regen
Base Mana Regen
Sight Range
Attack Range
Missile Speed
Attack Duration
Cast Duration
Base Attack Speed
Base Attack Time
Base Magic Resist
Turn Rate
Level Changes
Most Played As

Grimstroke Grimstroke[edit]

Recommended Roles
Support Nuker Disabler Escape

The people of Ashkavor crowded around the temple square, eager to witness the ascension of their new guardian—to stand near the man as he bound their souls to his own. But as his final brush strokes fell against the runestone, and the bond of a new Ascended One was forged, everyone—even those who'd stayed in their homes—could sense that something had gone terribly wrong.

He knew the cause instantly. The droplets of ichor he'd procured to amplify the potency of his inkpots had instead contaminated them, and the power of the binding spell he'd cast now threatened to consume him. An inky corruption snaked upward from the runestone, along the handle of his brush, soon overtaking his hands. From there it spread quickly. Once it overcame his face and his mouth, he couldn't have screamed even if he'd wanted to.

All of his life he'd calculated on how to attain ever greater powers than the limits presented by his teachers would allow—going so far as to break the sacred prohibition against augmenting the inks. Indeed, with the wellspring of the Ascended bond open to him, he felt a measure of power coursing into his soul like he'd never imagined. His greatest triumph was upon him, if he could only survive it.

He drew deep from the power of the bond, pushing back against the corrupted ink flow. A great moan filled the air—the collective cry of his people. Some swayed on their feet. The weakest collapsed. Many tried to run. And still deeper he pulled from their bloodline reservoir. But it wasn't enough to stop the ink tide.

It was only when the breath trapped in his lungs began to fail him, and the inkpool darkness fully encased him, that he saw his way out. The bond he'd made with the Ashkavoran people—his people—meant to be drawn upon only in service of their protection... It flowed two ways.

With a final surge of strength—this time directed by more than just blind repulsion—he pushed the ink torrent into the bond itself.

Slowly, he felt the tide retreat... and heard the awful wails of his people as the corruption in turn rolled over them. When at last the ink relented, his eyes opened upon a world changed. The Ashkavoran people as he knew them were gone. Every last soul was transformed into terrifying shades of their former selves—comprised no longer of blood and bone, only viscid, tainted ink.

Skilled at manipulating battle from the outskirts, Grimstroke studies every movement and assesses each line, deciding when to emerge from inky darkness to disable his victims and bind them together with a swipe of his brush. He delights in unleashing phantom thralls to vex opponents, as he carefully considers how to dispatch multiple enemies with one fateful stroke.
Grimstroke (In-Game Description)


Stroke of Fate
Point Target
Enemy Units
Damage Type
Grimstroke paints a path of ink with his brush, damaging and slowing enemies. The damage is increased with each enemy the ink hits.
Initial Damage120/180/240/300
Bonus Damage Per Target16/24/32/40
Movement Speed Slow50%/60%/70%/80%
Slow Duration1.5
Radius120 ➜ 160
Cast Range1400
Cast Point0.8
Cast Backswing0.53
Does not pierce Spell Immunity.
The corruptive force of Grimstroke's ink, drawn from the reservoir of his fallen people, consumes any enemy caught in its path.
  • The ink path travels at 2400 speed.
  • Provides 160 radius ground vision on enemies hit, lasting 2 seconds.
  • Multiple casts do not stack, it only refreshes the duration.
  • Affected enemies are briefly painted dark red while slowed.
Phantom's Embrace
Unit Target
Enemy Units
Damage Type
Summons a phantom that moves quickly towards the target, latching to it when she arrives. Once latched, the phantom damages and silences. If she survives the full latch duration, she rends her victim for heavy damage and refreshes the cooldown of Phantom's Embrace.
Damage Per Second10/20/30/40
Rend Damage120/200/280/360
Latch Duration5
Latch Radius100
Hero Hit Count2/2/3/3
Non-Hero Hit Count6/6/9/9
Cast Range900
Cast Point0
Does not pierce Spell Immunity.
Blocked by Linken's Sphere and echoed by Lotus Orb.
Grimstroke holds no sorrow for the downfall of his people. Only for Yaovhi, she who was most dear to him, does he feel even a semblance of longing.
  • Total damage:
    • 105/220/335/450
  • The phantom travels at 750 speed.
  • The phantom provides 200 vision of the target while chasing it and while latched on.
  • The phantom instantly dies if the target becomes unattackable or spell immune.
  • The phantom returns to Grimstroke if it survives the entire latch duration or if the target dies.
  • The cooldown is refreshed when the phantom returns to Grimstroke.
  • A phantom mask is visible over the target until the phantom reaches it.
Ink Swell
Unit Target
Allied Units
Damage Type
Grimstroke shrouds an allied unit in ink, increasing its movement speed. Enemies in range of the allied unit are damaged with inky tendrils over time. After a few seconds the swell triggers, applying damage and stunning the area around the unit. The swell damage and stun duration depend on how long ink tendril damage was inflicted to enemy heroes across the duration.
Tendril Damage Per Second25/35/45/55
Maximum Swell Damage90/180/270/360
Maximum Stun Duration1.1/1.9/2.7/3.5
Movement Speed Bonus10%/12%/14%/16%
Buff Duration2.5
Cast Range400/525/650/775
Cast Point0.15
Cast Backswing0.73/0.86
Damage as Heal
Deals more damage and heal the target for a percentage of the damage Ink Swell deals. Upon expiration, the target will receive a strong dispel.
Does not pierce Spell Immunity.
Now that the rise of the ink tide no longer threatens to overwhelm Grimstroke, its tendrils of power are never far from his hand.
  • The tendril damage is dealt in smaller amounts every 0.2 seconds, for 15 instances total.
  • Damage per instance:
    • 5/7/9/11
  • Max ink swell damage and stun are reached after a full duration of tendril damage is dealt to an enemy hero.
  • Total damage:
    • 175/305/435/565
  • The swell and stun do not occur if the user dies before it expires.
  • Dispelling the buff still causes the swell damage and stun.
  • A moon encircled is visible over the target. The circle shrinks over the duration until touching the moon and bursting at the end.
  • Castable on Spell Immune allies.
Ultimate Ability
Unit Target
Enemy Heroes
Binds a targeted enemy hero to its nearest allied hero within the bind radius, preventing both from moving away from each other. Any enemy unit target spell that a bound hero receives also gets cast on the other bound hero. If soulbind is broken before the duration expires, the initial target will be bound to the next nearest allied hero in the radius.
Leash Duration6/7/8
Bind Radius600
Break Radius700
Cast Range700/800/900
Cast Point0.15
Cast Backswing0.5
Blocked by Linken's Sphere only. Ignores Lotus Orb.
The Ascended were chosen sons of Ashkavor, granted immense power by the bonds forged between their own souls and those they were charged with protecting. In the years that follow the ruination of his kin, Grimstroke discovered much more sinister applications for the binding rituals...
  • Soulbind can only link to one hero at a time. Multiple soulbinds cannot be linked to each other.
  • Casting again on the primary target does not stack, it only refreshes the duration.
  • Casting again on the secondary target has no effect.
  • Does not bind to invisible or invulnerable heroes.
  • A skull mask is visible over the primary target.

Aghanim's Scepter Ability[edit]

Dark Portrait
Unit Target
Enemy Heroes
Creates a spell immune ink illusion of a target enemy hero.
Illusion Duration25
Bonus Movement Speed30%
Illusion Damage Dealt150%
Illusion Damage Taken350%
Cast Range1200
This spell is granted directly by the scepter.
Does not pierce Spell Immunity.

Talent Tree[edit]

Talent Tree
+40% Stroke of Fate Stroke of Fate Damage 25 +150 Ink Swell Ink Swell Radius
+3 Phantom's Embrace Phantom's Embrace Hit Count 20 +800 Stroke of Fate Stroke of Fate Cast Range
+150 Ink Swell Ink Swell Radius 15 +16% Ink Swell Ink Swell Movement Speed
-5s Ink Swell Ink Swell Cooldown 10 +50 Phantom's Embrace Phantom's Embrace DPS

Summon Stats[edit]

Phantom [h]
Unit Type
Attack Type
Armor Type
2 / 2 / 3 / 3
Health Regen
Attack Range
Missile Speed
Attack Duration
Cast Duration
Base Attack Time
Movement Speed
Sight Range
Magic Resistance
Turn Rate
Gold Bounty

Version History[edit]

Version Balance Changes
  • Nerf Ink Swell movement speed bonus reduced from 12/14/16/18% to 10/12/14/16%
  • Rescale Ink Swell stun duration rescaled from 1/1.9/2.8/3.7 to 1.1/1.9/2.7/3.5
  • Nerf Level 15 Talent reduced from +20% Ink Swell Movement Speed to +16%
  • Nerf Ink Swell Shard bonus damage reduced from +50% to +40%
  • Nerf Ink Swell Shard heal reduced 50% to 40%
  • Nerf Level 10 Talent reduced from -6s Ink Swell cooldown to -5s
  • Rework Reworked Shard upgrade. Causes Ink Swell to deal 50% more damage and heal the target for 50% of the damage Ink Swell deals. Upon expiration, the target will receive a strong dispel.
  • Buff Phantom's Embrace damage per second increased from 6/14/22/30 to 10/20/30/40
  • Buff Soulbind latch radius increased from 550 to 600
  • Buff Level 10 Talent increased from -4s Ink Swell Cooldown to -6
  • Rework Level 10 Talent changed from +100 Cast Range to +50 Phantom's Embrace DPS
  • Buff Ink Over shard cast range increased from 700 to 950
  • Buff Ink Over shard total damage increased from 240 to 320
  • Buff Ink Over shard movement slow increased from 20% to 25%
  • Buff Base attack range increased from 575 to 600
  • Nerf Ink Swell Max damage is reduced from 100/200/300/400 to 90/180/270/360
  • Buff Ink Swell max values now happen after 2.5 seconds of touching an enemy, rather than 3 seconds
  • Buff Phantom’s Embrace manacost reduced from 110/120/130/140 to 80/100/120/140
  • Rescale Phantom’s Embrace cooldown rescaled from to 32/28/24/20 to 36/30/24/18
  • Buff Phantom's Embrace bounty from 37/20 Gold/XP to 10/10
  • Buff Dark Portrait illusion duration increased from 15 seconds to 25
  • Buff Phantom’s Embrace now refreshes the cooldown if the target it was cast on dies before it reaches them
  • Rework Level 10 Talent changed from +80 Ink Swell Damage to -4s Ink Swell Cooldown
  • Buff Added Aghanim's Shard
    • Grants Ink Over
      • Covers a target enemy in ink for 6 seconds, slowing attack speed by 50, movement speed by 20% and dealing a total of 240 damage over its duration.
      • Cast Range: 700. Cooldown: 14. Manacost: 125
  • Buff Attack range increased from 550 to 575
  • Rework Level 10 Talent changed from +20 Movement Speed to +100 Cast Range
  • Rework Level 15 Talent changed from +150 Cast Range to +20% Ink Swell Movement Speed
  • Buff Level 20 Talent increased from +650 Stroke of Fate Cast Range to +800
  • Buff Level 10 Talent reduced from +25 Movement Speed to +20
  • Nerf All talents are now about 20% weaker
  • Buff Phantom's Embrace rend damage increased from 80/170/260/350 to 120/200/280/360
  • Buff Level 15 Talent increased from +15% Spell Amplification to +20%
  • Buff Level 20 Talent increased from +600 Stroke of Fate Cast Range to +800
  • Buff Base Intelligence increased by 2
  • Rework Level 10 Talent changed from +90 Gold/Min to +100 Ink Swell Max Damage
  • Buff Level 15 Talent increased from +125 Cast Range to +175
  • Buff Level 15 Talent increased from +12% Spell Amplification to +15%
  • Buff Phantom's Embrace Rend damage increased from 75/150/225/300 to 80/170/260/350
  • Buff Ink Swell cast range increased from 400/500/600/700 to 400/525/650/775
  • Nerf Base damage reduced by 4
  • Nerf Base damage reduced by 2
  • Nerf Soulbind no longer reduces movement speed by 10%
  • Nerf Soulbind slow reduced from 10/20/30% to 10%
  • Nerf Dark Portrait illusion incoming damage increased from 200% to 350%
  • Nerf Dark Portrait illusion duration reduced from 20 to 15
  • Buff Added Scepter upgrade:
    • Grants you a new ability, Dark Portrait
    • Creates an ink illusion of a target enemy hero
    • Illusion lasts 20 seconds and is magic immune with +30% movement speed
    • Takes 200% incoming damage and deals 150% outgoing damage
    • Cooldown: 35
    • Mana Cost: 200
  • Buff Ink Swell is now castable on allied Spell Immune units
  • Nerf Ink Swell stun duration reduced from 1.4/2.2/3.0/3.8 to 1.0/1.9/2.8/3.7
  • Nerf Soulbind slow reduced from 15/30/45% to 10/20/30%
  • Nerf Movement Speed reduced by 5
  • Nerf Phantom's Embrace rend damage reduced from 120/200/280/360 to 75/150/225/300
  • Nerf Ink Swell mana cost increased from 90/100/110/120 to 120/130/140/150
  • Nerf Ink Swell movement speed reduced from 18% to 12/14/16/18%
  • Nerf Ink Swell max stun duration reduced from 1.7/2.4/3.1/3.8 to 1.4/2.2/3/3.8
  • Nerf Soulbind cooldown increased from 90/70/50 to 100/75/50
  • Nerf Ink Swell max damage reduced from 160/240/320/400 to 100/200/300/400
  • Nerf Ink Swell max stun duration reduced from 2/2.6/3.2/3.8 to 1.7/2.4/3.1/3.8
  • Nerf Soulbind cooldown increased from 80/65/50 to 90/70/50
  • Playable in Competitive Enabled Grimstroke in Captains Mode
  • Buff Soulbind now applies a Leashed state to the targets
    • Disallows teleportation and mobility based abilities
  • Nerf Soulbind duration reduced from 6/8/10 to 6/7/8
  • Nerf Phantom's Embrace creature now gets closer to the target before latching on
  • Rework Ink Swell now does its maximum impact based on the duration it hit any hero
    • (Rather than amount of DPS dealt to all heroes combined)
    • Scales linearly from 0 to 3 seconds
  • Nerf Ink Swell max stun duration reduced from 2.2/2.8/3.4/4 to 2/2.6/3.2/3.8
  • Nerf Level 20 Talent changed from +2 Hits to Kill Phantom to +1
  • Nerf Ink Swell max damage reduced from 220/280/340/400 to 160/240/320/400
  • Nerf Ink Swell movement speed bonus reduced from 18/22/26/30% to 18%
  • Buff Phantom's Embrace latch duration increased from 4/4/5/5 to 5
  • Nerf Phantom's Embrace DPS rescaled from 12/18/24/30 to 6/14/22/30
  • Nerf Ink Swell no longer makes the target immune to attacks
  • Buff Ink Swell no longer silences and disarms the target
  • Buff Soulbind duration increased from 4/6/8 to 6/8/10

2018/08/29 Update

  • Nerf Stroke of Fate movement slow duration reduced from 2➜1.5
  • Nerf Stroke of Fate movement slow can now be dispelled
  • Nerf Stroke of Fate projectile vision radius reduced from 240➜160
  • Nerf Stroke of Fate projectile endpoint vision radius reduced from 300➜160 and duration reduced from 3.34➜2
  • Bug Fix Fixed +600 Stroke of Fate cast range talent incorrectly updating the range preview
  • Nerf Phantom unit's vision range reduced from 400➜200
  • Nerf Changed phantom latch duration from 4/4.5/5/5.5➜4/4/5/5
  • Buff If the target dies, the phantom now flies back to caster to refresh the cooldown
  • Bug Fix Fixed a bug with +2 hits required talent only giving +1.3 hits (4 non-hero hits instead of 6)
  • Nerf Ink Swell bonus movement speed reduced from 28/32/36/40%➜18/22/26/30%
  • Nerf Ink Swell damage and stun amounts now range from 0 to max, instead of from a base value to max
  • Nerf Ink tendril particle doesn't display if the affected enemy unit is invisible
  • Nerf Soulbind no longer sees through invisibility on leashed targets

2018/08/25 Update

  • New New Hero

Removed Abilities[edit]

Ink Over
Unit Target
Enemy Units
Damage Type
Covers a target enemy in ink, slowing attack speed, movement speed and dealing damage over its duration.
Attack Speed Slow50
Movement Speed Slow25
Cast Range950
This ability is granted by Aghanim's Shard
Does not pierce Spell Immunity.
  • Removed in patch 7.29

Notable Players[edit]


See also[edit]

External links[edit]