DOTA Lycan guide
Introduction to the hero
The Lycanthrope, Banehallow, is one of the most feared Defense of the Ancients characters. This scourge hero has the ability to summon wolves, and even turn into one himself. However, he's not the real problem people are scared of... until beefed up with items of course. The lycan's wolves have upgrades in DOTA that give them both a bash on hit ability and permanent invisibility unless attacking!
This guide won't be going into detail about Banehallow's skills. Instead, it's about how to play the lycan during a DOTA gameplay and some strategy tips. Help for using his skills effectively if you're new and their attributes are on the Lycan hero subpages at the (site shut down) website.
Don't solo with Banehallow. There's much better hero choices out there that should be soloing than the lycan. Grab a tango, your favorite stat boosting items (even ironwood branches are fine), and head out.
Your main goal at this stage is to level your wolves up to 4 when they're the most useful, and waiting on your ultimate. You have one of the most annoying tools at your disposal to harrass: Your wolves. Try to get them as soon as possible, and keep beefing them up with the DOTA lycan's skill points.
They can chase after enemies and attack a hero without getting Banehallow hit by all the creeps. Your summoned wolves are also great for finishing off anyone who's running away with low health. However, you should be careful! Don't let your wolves die in battle or else you give the enemy DOTA hero a small experience boost, and a large gold bounty.
Got shapeshift? The lycanthrope can then go roaming to find heroes to kill. You can also try neutral creeping with your wolves if the lanes are able to handle themselves. Have them take the hits for you if you're not used to jungling. You can also use them to lure creeps into the lane, which are killed by your creeps. This is an advanced strategy that gives you bonus experience and keeps the lane from pushing itself out too far.
Time to feed
Keep roaming and hunting heroes during the midgame. Your goal right now is to eat, eat, and eat some more. It's a DOTA hero buffet for the lycan's taking! Watch your ultimate's cooldown so that it and your summoned wolves are available when you're about to fight. You can also use it to get away from practically anything (Night Stalker & Bloodseeker are still dangerous to you).
You might want to buy yourself some life steal. Vladimir's Offering, which grants both a damage boost and vampiric lifedrain aura, is always nice to boost your wolves. Everything else is candy. It doesn't really matter what you buy, as long as it's not something really silly.
Here's when things start to get tricky. Did you manage to feed a lot before most heroes are at least level 16? Go and end this game of DOTA. They're probably scared of you already! Work together as a team and push in those barracks.
If you didn't feed... the time for your buffet might be over. Other heroes are getting strong, and they're likely playing better at this stage. Try to organize your group together and take out combatant stragglers one at a time. Try to hang out on their side of the map so they aren't able to feed or even creep. Kill Rosh, etc, bide your time. You're effectively sieging them. Any barracks you destroy will also slightly lower their gold bounty from creeps they manage to kill. Doing this for awhile should practically guarantee you the game.
However, if your team isn't playing properly, you might have to build your lycan up as a carry. An assault cuirass, satanic, cranium basher, and a heart usually does the trick. Linkens or BKB will be another good addition if your enemies are able to stun the lycan. You are playing -em right? If not, ignore those items and concentrate on keeping the enemy down any way you can without team support.
Good luck playing DOTA as the lycan! He's one of my favorite heroes when I don't mind microing the wolves. Hope this lycan guide has been useful, see you on bnet.