Reliable gold
Gold can be split into two categories:
- Reliable gold - Any bounty you get from hero kills, Roshan, and global gold from towers is added to your reliable gold pool.
- Unreliable gold - Everything else (creep kills, neutrals, etc).
The difference between the two (except from how each is earned) is how each one is spent:
- Dying can only take away gold from your unreliable gold pool and not from your reliable gold.
- Buying items uses up your unreliable gold first before using your reliable gold.
- Buyback uses reliable gold first.
In the end you still have a fixed amount of total gold (you just add the two together).
The purpose of having these two categories is to encourage ganking and tower kills that accumulate the reliable gold pool, which is gold that cannot be lost from dying.
 Acquiring gold
 Starting gold
Each player begins with 603 if they choose their hero, or 853 gold if they random their hero.
 Periodic gold
Each player receives 1 unreliable gold every 0.8 seconds, which results in 5 gold every 4 seconds.
There are a few items and hero abilities in Dota 2 which allow you to boost your gold income, namely:
Unreliable gold is earned every time you last hit a creep, tower or Roshan. Each type of creep has its own bounty range.
The first time a hero is killed by a non-neutral/non-ally unit it will give a bonus 200 reliable gold to the killer; this is called First Blood
When there is only 1 assist to a Dire or Radiant kill, the kill is instead given to the hero that assisted in the kill. When there are multiple assists to a Dire or Radiant kill, the gold is split amongst all heroes that have assists.
Every time you kill an enemy hero you are awarded with
- (Current streak of dying Hero)+200+(Dying Hero's Level)*9 reliable gold
Where current streak is:
- 0 if the hero has no kills since last respawn
- 0 if the hero has killed another hero and not died yet
- 0 If the hero has two kills in a row
- 50 Killing Spree (Three kills in a row)
- 100 Dominating (Four kills in a row)
- 150 Mega Kill! (Five kills in a row)
- 200 Unstoppable! (Six kills in a row)
- 250 Wicked Sick (Seven kills in a row)
- 300 Monster Kill!!! (Eight kills in a row)
- 350 Godlike! (Nine kills in a row)
- 400 Beyond Godlike! (Ten or more kills in a row)
Heroes that are in a 1000 area and not being the killer will be granted a certain amount of reliable gold, depending on total heroes in that area.
- 1 Hero: 125+12*(Dying Hero's Level)
- 2 Heroes: 40+10*(Dying Hero's Level)
- 3 Heroes: 10+6*(Dying Hero's Level)
- 4 or 5 Heroes: 6*(Dying Hero's Level)
Items can be sold for 50% of the price they were bought. Items can be resold immediately (within 10 seconds) for full price to revert an accidental purchase.
 Spending (or losing) gold
 Picking a Hero
Picking a hero in any mode will cost you 250 gold, thus leaving each player that picked a hero 603 gold. If you should decide to re-pick it will cost you an extra 100 gold, thus leaving you with only 503 gold to start off with. Should you decide to random (or play All Random), receiving a hero will cost you no gold.
The main purpose of gold is to buy items. The player with the most gold will be able to buy the most items and will therefore (usually) have the strongest hero. What items each player buys depends on his hero role.
Every time you die you lose 30*(Level of your Hero) unreliable gold; the only way to reduce this amount is with a Bloodstone (you'll lose 25 gold less for every Bloodstone charge). Dying cannot take away reliable gold.
 Buying Back
Not waiting until your hero respawns and paying the buyback fee
- Buyback fee = 100 + (Level*Level*1.5) + (GameTime*15), rounded down to a multiplier of 50.
This will take away from your reliable gold pool first.
 Abandoning the Game
After being disconnected from the game for more then 5 minutes, all of your gold is equally redivided between your team players, including the (1.25gold/sec) passive bonus gold gain. The passive bonus gold gain is restored once you reconnect to the game, but the rest of the gold is not (including the gold missed from the passive gold gain).