When released, drunken master was not known how to use. It took approximately two weeks before the booze kicked in and people actually knew how to play him. It's all to simple, sol's bulwark and a sheildbreaker was all needed to commence pwn city. Once you had these items it is easy to do good, but you do need a good set up for this to happen. Solid 250- 300 gpm and it was possible to get the items required. Usually best when put in mid position. Logger's hatchet, iron buckler, and a hardy set of runes of blight. Necessary to keep rune control and you are potentially set up for domination.
I'm not here to teach you how to play drunken, I'm here to tell you of how overpowered he is. Negating all enemy spells, 25/50/75 attack speed, with 4 drink charges 20/30/40 reduction of all damage. With previous items discussed (negative armor items,) when combined could possibly tear threw a man's soul. Best situation for side laning would just to have a support that let's you farm. Ghost marchers are my recommended boots, with the speed you can catch up to people and lunge them. Drink often, thus would be drunken's advice to play him. Health is restored to drunken when using drink, this is very useful if you have damage over time on you. When laning mid you are gonna want to buy a blood chalice, drink will keep your health pool up but in order to use your skills and drink you will need this very important item.
In the hands of a pro drunken can be very deadly, in the hands of a less skilled player can be very different. Yes it's true, you can use this argument for any hero. Drunken is the tank/carry and it's very easy to use your lunge and totally mess it up, potentially screwing up the entire team fight because the hero you lunged went the wrong direction. An average player can do good with drunken as well, this doesn't mean you can just play drunken and own face every game. He's is counter-able as well, a well timed level one gank on the lonesome drunken mid can mess up his game severely. As a player myself, I like to play mid heroes and go mid about 75% of my games. As a mid player I absolutely hate facing drunken master mid, even though i can have a ward at the rune spot and I see it first drunken can stagger to the rune very quick and wins rune control. Rune control is a big factor in winning mid, so this makes it very difficult. Maybe it's just me, but I believe drunken is in the top 5 most over-powered heroes in today's HoN world.