6/25/19 Live Balance Changes
This past month's metagame has been fairly diverse, with new strategies being explored; however, a handful of strategies are dominating in ways we’d like to address. In particular, we’d like to try to open things up just a bit more, leading into the World Championship.[www.direwolfdigital.com]
- Vara, Vengeance-Seeker - Now 3/3 (was 3/4)
- Statuary Maiden - Now 2/2 (was 2/4)
- Evenhanded Golem - Gained Voidbound
- Darya, Warrior Poet - Now 5FFTT 3/5 (was 4FFTT 3/4)
- Moonstone Vanguard - Now 4/4 that gains 4 health (was 5/5 that gains 5 health)
Vara, Vengeance-Seeker - Vara has had a dominating impact on the game since her release. At the time, Shadow had been struggling for a while and needed some help. That’s certainly not the case now; and while we still like how she plays, her dominance has worn out its welcome. While this change increases the range of possible counterplay against her, we believe Vara will still have an important part of the metagame.
Note: As Vara, Vengeance-Seeker is only available from the Into Shadow campaign, falling outside of our normal system for refunding crafted cards, we are giving a one-time grant of a 1,250 gold to users who purchased the campaign (similar to Korovyat Palace and Bore). Users who upgraded the card will receive an additional 1,250 gold. Players will of course keep all their copies of Vara, Vengeance-Seeker.
Statuary Maiden - The change to Vara should help improve balance in Stonescar; however, she appears in such a wide range of other Shadow decks, we wanted to take additional action on a Stonescar-specific component. While Statuary Maiden has a lot of good gameplay, she can have a pretty intense impact on unit-heavy decks. Our hope is that this change preserves the synergies she makes possible, while increasing counterplay and reducing her ability to single-handedly bring a game to a standstill.
Evenhanded Golem - Evenhanded Golem is a sweet card that enables a wide range of strategies with a different mix of cards than people usually play. This wide range and difference in experience is important to the fun of the card, and void recursion undermined the spirit of the design. Our hope is that this change preserves the powerful incentive to build unusual decks, while reducing the need for them to always be built around Shadow.
Darya, Warrior Poet/Moonstone Vanguard - While Stonescar and Evenhanded Golem have had a loud impact on the current metagame, the changes listed above to Vara, Statuary Maiden, and Evenhanded Golem are extremely beneficial to Praxis Pledge, which has already been overperforming to a degree that we wanted to take preemptive action. Our hope here is to increase diversity among Praxis decks and Pledge-matters decks.
In addition to these five nerfs, we have buffed seven cards that we believe will have a major impact on the format.
- Icaria, the Liberator - Now 7FFFJJJ (was 8FFFJJJ)
- Bartholo, the Seducer - Now 3JJS (was 4JJS)
- Banish - Now kills units or relics with cost 5 or less (was 4 or less)
- Knight-Chancellor Siraf - Now 7 and exhaust to use her ability (was 8 and exhaust)
- Siraf's Choice - Now 7TJ (was 8TJ)
- Shush - Now 2TJ (was 3TJ)
- Twilight Hunt - Now +2/+2 (was +1/+1)
Icaria, the Liberator - A true classic. While Icaria was extremely dominant for a long time, the landscape has changed enough and there are enough other 7+ cost powerhouses, we felt it was time to restore her to full glory.
Bartholo, the Seducer - One of the most feared cards in Eternal's history, Bartholo was ahead of his time. Enough tools now exist to interact with him, we're bringing him back and better than ever. While we have reduced his cost back to the original three, we have preserved the powered-up version of his ultimate, preferring the gameplay it encourages.
Banish - Banish has been a good removal spell at various points, but has fallen out of favor with the rise of numerous 5-drops currently dominating the ranked metagame. While we're a fan of 5-drops being good, it's important for there to be good answers. We believe this change to Banish will help promote diversity among Shadow decks and shift the balance of power among threats.
Knight-Chancellor Siraf/Siraf's Choice - Siraf was once the best endgame in Eternal, but has lagged behind a bit in recent months. We believe in her play and wanted to give her another chance to shine, in this new context.
Shush - One of our goals in this patch was to give Time a few more options for interaction with problematic units, and to this end, we have reduced the cost on Shush, making it easier to use tactically against problematic unit abilities.
Twilight Hunt - Killer is a great form of interaction that Time specializes in, so we felt this was a good place to give them some extra rate. Twilight Hunt encourages good gameplay, informs card choices, and besides, Dinosaurs are awesome.
In addition to the aforementioned balance changes, we have also taken this opportunity to clean up some unit types, increasing consistency among Rogues, jobs among Oni, types of Unseen, types of mounts, splitting up Elementals and Sprites, collapsing the Raptor subtype into Birds, and a few one-off changes to better match the art.
Unit Type Updates:
- Cinder Sprite - Now Sprite (was Elemental Sprite)
- Dinomancy Enthusiast - Now Explorer Shaman (was Dinosaur Explorer)
- Fireheart Recruit - Now Oni (was Oni Warrior)
- Lightning Sprite - Now Sprite (was Elemental Sprite)
- Messenger Falcon - Now Bird (was Raptor)
- Nostrix, Lord of Visions - Now Unseen Owl (was Owl)
- Oni Patrol - Now Oni (was Oni Soldier)
- Quicktrigger Outlaw - Now Gunslinger Rogue (was Gunslinger)
- Rakano Outlaw - Now Gunslinger Rogue (was Gunslinger)
- Rallying Sergeant - Now Oni (was Oni Warrior)
- Rindra, the Duskblade - Now Unseen Elf (was Unseen)
- Scavenging Vulture - Now Bird (was Raptor)
- Shadowlands Feaster - Now Direbeast (was Spider)
- Shimmerpack - Now Dinosaur Illusion (was Illusion)
- Shingane Captain - Now Oni (was Oni Soldier)
- Shingane Firebrand - Now Oni (was Oni Warrior)
- Silverwing Familiar - Now Bird (was Raptor)
- Twilight Raptor - Now Bird (was Raptor)
- Unpredictable Outlaw - Now Gunslinger Rogue (was Gunslinger)
- Vicious Highwayman - Now Gunslinger Rogue (was Gunslinger)
- Wild Rider - Now Yeti Pig (was Yeti)
- Yeti Troublemaker - Now Yeti Rogue (was Yeti)
These changes will go live this afternoon.