(Editor's note: The in-game client version of this patch was "188.8.131.5294", unchanged from the promo release the previous week. We added the "b" to distinguish between the two updates.)
4/22/19 Balance Changes Edit
Homecoming has had a significant impact on Eternal’s metagame, leading to our most diverse ECQ final day, so far. But there’s always room for improvement, so we’ve got a handful of additional changes that we’re making.
First, we’d like to see a little more presence for aggro, particularly those aggressive strategies without a large number of Fliers. To this end, we are buffing a variety of low-cost units that have each had such great success in the past, they were at one point nerfed.
- Argenport Instigator - Now 2S (was 2SS)
- Crownwatch Paladin - Now 2/2 (was 2/1)
- Desert Marshal - Now 2/2 (was 2/1)
- Rakano Artisan - Now 2/2 (was 2/1)
- Champion of Chaos - Now gets +1/+1 with each ability (was +1/+0)
In particular, we are hoping to give players looking for aggressive counter-play against sites a couple more attractive options.
- Flame Blast - Now 1FFF (was 2FFF)
- Treachery - Now can discard a unit or a site (was previously only able to discard units)
Flame Blast was once a defining direct damage spell, but has mostly fallen by the wayside, since its increase in cost. This change functionally restores Flame Blast to full power; but now in a new context where its ability to hit sites can be very impactful.
Treachery has seen occasional play, but hasn't been versatile enough to receive widespread adoption. Opening the option to discard sites gives new flexibility and purpose to a fun and aggressive form of interaction.
Finally, as we’ve looked at game data over the past couple of months, we’ve decided to take further measures to bring the Smugglers back a bit to line up with the rest of the Merchants.
- Red Canyon Smuggler - Now 2/1 (was 2/2)
- Hidden Road Smuggler - Now 2/2 (was 2/3)
- Great Valley Smuggler - Now 2/2 that gets +2/+2 if you have a relic (was 3/3 that gets +1/+1 if you have a relic)
Red Canyon Smuggler and Hidden Road Smuggler have been at a fairly high rate, benefiting from enough of the same black market cards, that they have used as four-ofs alongside each other too often, contributing to making games more repetitive. We believe these new stat lines are still very competitive, but will hopefully open up more three-cost options and decrease the pressure for players to play both of them alongside each other.
Great Valley Smuggler was pushed enough that it was seeing heavy play even in decks with no relics at all. This change brings its stats more into line with Howling Peak Smuggler. Like Howling Peak Smuggler, we're happy with players having a powerful option when they take advantage of the synergy, but we wanted to pull back on the benefit for players just running as many Smugglers as possible.
Players stacking Smugglers and Merchants have also lead us to realign two cards that have seen heavy use in these kinds of decks.
Jotun Hurler, like Xo of the Endless Hoard, was just a little too efficient at providing free material for players to exchange with their Market. This change should hopefully take a little pressure off of aggro decks that were finding one-drops too risky to gamble on. We tested other numbers, but wanted to go the extra mile in this case toward opening up more possibilities for early aggression.
Shelterwing Rider was already a powerful threat that received a buff during a period in which Hooru was struggling. Korovyat Palace was one of the two most played Homecoming cards in the ECQ and it's safe to say that Hooru is no longer struggling. While Korovyat Palace is definitely a card we're monitoring closely, it has been an important reason for Hooru finally getting a chance to shine. That said, the use of many Merchants was making the Shelterwing Rider + Korovyat Palace combination a little too reliable, and our hope is that restoring Shelterwing Rider to its original stats will increase the range of counter-play available.