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Balance Update Patch Notes: Sep 20

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A new patch will be released later this week in order to apply balance changes and a few bug fixes.

TL;DR

  • Chromie's Sand BlastSand Blast quest is easier to complete and her Time TrapTime Trap [E] has an increased cast range.
  • Expected Kel'Thuzad nerfs.
  • Butcher's late-game health has been increased.
  • Brighting's Soothing MistSoothing Mist range has been increased and she received tweaks in order to increase parity amongst her talent tiers.
  • Leoric's EntombEntomb cooldown has been reduced.
  • Garrosh's mana costs have been adjusted.
  • Chen's Grounding BrewGrounding Brew has been removed and its functionality has been added to Purifying BrewPurifying Brew. The cooldown of Purifying BrewPurifying Brew has been drastically decreased.

Full patch notes:

Blizzard LogoBlizzard (Source)

Assassin

Cassia

Divider_Hero_Cassia.png

Stats

  • Basic Attack damage increased from 125 to 130

Abilities

  • Blinding Light (W)
    • Passive damage bonus to blinded targets increased from 15 to 20%

Talents

  • Level 1
    • Thunderstroke (Q)
      • First quest reward damage bonus increased from 75 to 100
    • True Sight (W)
      • Removed
    • Seraph’s Hymn (W)
      • Moved from Level 13
      • Cooldown reduction per basic attack against Blinded Heroes reduced from 3 to 2 seconds

Chromie

Divider_Hero_Chromie_Crop.png

Abilities

  • Sand Blast (Q)
    • Reduced the number of Sand Blast hits required to unlock the Sand Blast echo from 80 to 60

Talents

  • Level 2
    • Timely Surprise (E)
      • Now also increases the cast range of Time Trap by 33%

    Developer Comment: Only about 40% of Chromie players were unlocking the echo over the course of a game, and among players that did it was occurring later than we’d like. By reducing the requirements for completing Chromie’s quest, we won’t increase her late game power at all, but make her output a little more consistent.

    Kel'Thuzad

    Divider_Hero_Chromie_Crop.png

    Abilities

    • Frost Nova (W)
      • Mana cost increased from 45 to 50
    • Chains of Kel’Thuzad (E)
      • Mana cost increased from 45 to 50
    • Frost Blast (R)
      • Cooldown reduced from 100 to 80 seconds
    • Shadow Fissure (R)
      • Damage reduced from 440 to 400
      • Cooldown increased from 15 to 20 seconds
      • Mana cost increased from 50 to 60

    Talents

    • Level 4
      • Phylactery of Kel’Thuzad (Active)
        • Quest requirement increased from 10 to 12 Regen Globes
    • Level 7
      • Accelerated Decay (Q)
        • Bonus damage increased from 20 to 25%
      • Glacial Spike (Active)
        • Damage reduced from 220 to 60
        • Delay before the spike spawns increased from .5 to 1 seconds
    • Level 13
      • Chains of Ice (E)
        • Slow duration reduced from 1.25 to 1 second
        • Slow amount decreased from 70 to 60%
    • Level 16
      • Hungering Cold (W)
        • Bonus damage reduced from 60 to 55

    Developer Comment: As expected, there is a fairly large discrepancy between Kel’Thuzad’s performance across the entire game vs. players who are getting experienced with him at a higher level. His win-rate has climbed more than most of our other releases as players get used to his kit, so most of our changes are aimed at talent balance and toning his power down. While we like the sharpness of his power spike due to Master of the Cold Dark, we’ll continue to keep an eye on his burst potential and his overall strength going forward.

    The Butcher

    Divider_Hero_Butcher_crop.png

    Stats

    • Basic Attack damage increased from 125 to 130
    • Health scaling per level increased from 4 to 4.5%
    • Health Regeneration scaling per level increased from 4 to 4.5%

    Developer Comment: While we’ll be continuing to keep an eye on it, we believe that the Butcher’s quest tuning is appropriate. He has seen a significant drop in win rate in Hero League since our last round of changes, so we felt it was appropriate to increase his late-game Health so that he can keep up with other heroes, who often get many tools to survive his initial damage in teamfights.

    Thrall

    FJ7AAFOTWHJ31417483335508.png

    Stats

    • Base Maximum Health increased from 1787 to 1876
    • Base Health Regeneration increased from 3.7 to 3.9

    Developer Comment: FOR THE HORDE!

    Support

    Brightwing

    Divider_Hero_Brightwing_Crop.png

    Abilities

    • Soothing Mist (Trait)
      • Healing aura range increased from 6 to 7
    • Blink Heal (R)
      • Cooldown reduced from 10 to 9 seconds

    Talents

    • Level 1
      • Dream Shot (Q)
        • New functionality:
          • Increases the range of Arcane Flare by 50%
          • Hitting an enemy Hero in the center portion of Arcane Flare reduces the cooldown of Arcane Flare to 1 second
      • Hyper Shift (Z)
        • Cooldown reduction per Hero healed increased from 2 to 3 seconds
      • Unfurling Spray (Trait)
        • Removed
    • Level 4
      • Arcane Barrage (Q)
        • Removed
      • Peekaboo (Z)
        • Revealed area radius reduced from 20 to 15
        • Added functionality:
          • Pixie Dust is now applied to the target of Phase Shift
    • Level 7
      • Phase Shield (Z)
        • Added functionality:
          • Now applies Shield to Brightwing and her target

    Developer Comment: While Brightwing has been seeing a bit more play recently, her talent tree had some low-hanging fruit that we wanted to trim. Granting her a slightly larger range of Soothing Mist baseline will free up a more impactful choice at level 1. The addition of Arcane Barrage’s functionality into Dream Shot should also make that talent a bit more exciting to pick up. Overall, we were looking at giving the Faerie Dragon a few minor buffs and adjusting some talents in order to increase parity amongst her talent tiers.

    Lt. Morales

    Divider_Hero_LtMorales_cropped.png

    Stats

    • Base Maximum Health increased from 1528 to 1605
    • Base Life Regen increased from 3.18 to 3.34

    Abilities

    • Healing Beam (Q)
      • Energy Regeneration cooldown reduced from 3 to 2 seconds
      • You can no longer redirect Healing Beam to a target that is already being healed by your Healing Beam

    Talents

    • Level 1
      • Caduceus Feedback (Passive)
        • Now increases Basic Attack Range by 1.1 and only generates Energy from Basic Attacks against Heroic targets.

    Stukov

    Divider_Hero_Stukov.png

    Talents

    • Level 1
      • Spine Launcher (Passive)
        • Basic Attack damage reduction decreased from 50 to 30%

    Tyrande

    L326XNRFITE41417483335724.png

    Talents

    • Level 7
      • Huntress’ Fury (D)
        • Added functionality:
          • Now also increases the range of Hunter’s Mark by 50%
    • Level 13
      • Empower (W)
        • Base cooldown reduction decreased from 4 to 2 seconds

    Warriors

    Chen

    0WB1N574QT991417483333970.png

    Talents

    • Level 1
      • Grounding Brew (D)
        • Removed
    • Level 7
      • Purifying Brew (D)
        • Cooldown reduced from 45 to 15 seconds
        • Added functionality:
          • Chen now gains 30 Spell Armor while channeling Fortifying Brew

    Developer Comment: We realize how difficult it is for most Chen players to pass up Brewmaster’s Balance on Tier 3. We moved a powerful level 20 down to compete with it a couple patches ago but the data is still showing it as an underperformer. Lowering the cooldown drastically and granting it the functionality of Grounding Brew should incentivize players into choosing it when playing against certain team compositions.

    Dehaka

    Divider_Hero_Dehaka_crop.png

    Stats

    • Basic Attack damage reduced from 105 to 100

    Abilities

    • Dark Swarm (W)
      • Damage per tick reduced from 50 to 47

    Garrosh

    7DDW9GCJ6TPK1501096598432.png

    Abilities

    • Groundbreaker (Q)
      • Mana cost increased from 30 to 35
    • Wrecking Ball (E)
      • Mana cost increased from 60 to 70
    • Decimate (R)
      • Mana cost decreased from 30 to 25

    Talents

    • Level 1
      • Body Check (Active)
        • Cooldown decreased from 20 to 16 seconds
    • Level 7
      • Into the Fray (Active)
        • Cooldown increased from 30 to 40 seconds

    Developer Comment: These changes are a response to community feedback about Garrosh’s Mana costs. We initially kept them relatively low, as he is a fairly low impact Warrior when his combo is not available to him, however we agreed with the feedback and felt that he could use more Mana management.

    Leoric

    Divider_Heroes_Leoric_Cropped.png

    Abilities

    • Entomb (R)
      • Cooldown reduced from 75 to 60 seconds

    Bug Fixes

    General

    • Fixed a number of tooltip issues across the game.

    Heroes, Abilities, and Talents

    • Alarak: Casting Counter-Strike will now display a silver healthbar to indicate Protected status. 
    • Chromie: The Deep Breathing talent’s completed damage bonus will now match the tooltip located below her unit frame. 
    • Jaina: The Frost Armor talent will no longer cause Jaina’s damage to ignore armor. 
    • Leoric: Fixed an issue that could cause Leoric to become invisible after exiting Zagara’s Devouring Maw. 
    • Lt. Morales: Fixed an issue that caused Lt. Morale’s Displacement Grenade to reduce healing dealt after learning the System Shock talent. 
    • Uther: Fixed an issue causing Uther to gain extra damage and healing on consecutive casts of Wave of Light.
    • Uther: Uther's Hammer of Justice will no longer apply a 30% slow after the Stun effect fades.

    Sound

    • Valla: Fixed an issue causing the Creed of the Hunter talent to not play quest sound effects when progress was earned. 

    User Interface

    • Lt. Morales: The Cellular Reactor talent will now display an incoming heal indicator on the nameplate healthbar. 

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    What a patch. But where was the mana cost increase to Garrosh's abilities taken from? Tyrael, anything to say?

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    1 hour ago, Stan said:

    Level 1

    • Spine Launcher (Passive)
      • Basic Attack damage reduction decreased from 50 to 30%

    Meh... That still won't make the talent more appealing. One of the fun things about Stukov is slapping the fuck out of anyone fool enough to think "Oh, he is just a harmless Support".

     

    Edited by Valhalen
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    1 hour ago, Stan said:
    • Frost Nova (W)
      • Mana cost increased from 45 to 50
    • Chains of Kel’Thuzad (E)
      • Mana cost increased from 45 to 50

    I don't think this will be that bad. It's really just a small nerf to his mana management. He ends up dealing with mana a bit better than some other mana hungry heroes too imo, even though he struggles. 

    1 hour ago, Stan said:
    • Frost Blast (R)
      • Cooldown reduced from 100 to 80 seconds

    A nice change to a somewhat underwhelming heroic. Probably not enough to make it better than Shadow Fissure, even after it's nerfs.

    1 hour ago, Stan said:
    • Shadow Fissure (R)
      • Damage reduced from 440 to 400
      • Cooldown increased from 15 to 20 seconds
      • Mana cost increased from 50 to 60

    Even with the damage reduction I'd say Shadow Fissure does more than enough damage to decimate an enemy team. The mana cost is a bit hefty but not bad. The real change here would certainly be the extra 5 second cooldown. Even with that longer cooldown however, it still looks like an ability that is often regularly used.

    1 hour ago, Stan said:
    • Phylactery of Kel’Thuzad (Active)
      • Quest requirement increased from 10 to 12 Regen Globes

    This might hurt KT's ability to revive and sustain himself, especially into the late game when regen globes are more difficult to collect, but it's such a good talent that it's unlikely to become worse than the other two options. I'd say it's more in line with the other options, but still probably better.

    1 hour ago, Stan said:
    • Accelerated Decay (Q)
      • Bonus damage increased from 20 to 25%

    Nice for newer players who may want to go with a Q build. Meh for advanced players.

     

    1 hour ago, Stan said:
    • Glacial Spike (Active)
      • Delay before the spike spawns increased from .5 to 1 seconds
      • Damage reduced from 220 to 60

    Certainly one of the more impactful nerfs here. The damage reduction isn't a huge deal if you can execute your combo correctly, but the increased delay could certainly give opponents a chance to react to it, and deny you an obstacle to chain them to. It seems far more in line with the other talent options now, but still very rewarding in some cases.

    1 hour ago, Stan said:
    • Chains of Ice (E)
      • Slow amount decreased from 70 to 60%
      • Slow duration reduced from 1.25 to 1 second

    I still see this being more than enough to follow up with a frost nova and then some more. Still likely the best choice on it's row by far.

     

    1 hour ago, Stan said:
    • Hungering Cold (W)
      • Bonus damage reduced from 60 to 55

    Blizzard basically took a busted talent and made it slightly less busted but not enough to make it not busted. Still an absolutely devastating talent that is far too good to overlook.

    Pretty much my take on the KT changes. Butcher is now replayable... again lol.

    Edited by Maxkitty

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    Heroes in line to get reworks ASAP:

    Tyrael (weak in general)

    Medivh (weak in general)

    Sgt. Hammer (problems w/ variation)

    The Butcher (problems w/ variation)

    Lost Vikings (problems w/ variation)

    Tyrande (what is she even supposed to be?)

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    18 hours ago, Maxkitty said:

    Even with the damage reduction I'd say Shadow Fissure does more than enough damage to decimate an enemy team. The mana cost is a bit hefty but not bad. The real change here would certainly be the extra 5 second cooldown. Even with that longer cooldown however, it still looks like an ability that is often regularly used.

    Definitely. As soon as you get an early or mid-game quest completion, Shadow Fissure just becomes a way to finish off someone that has already hit 20% HP from your combo. Can't see it doing anything too major to KT.

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    1 hour ago, Blainie said:

    Definitely. As soon as you get an early or mid-game quest completion, Shadow Fissure just becomes a way to finish off someone that has already hit 20% HP from your combo. Can't see it doing anything too major to KT.

    The KT nerfs were very minimal, imo. Increasing the mana cost of his abilities by 5? Seriously. Decreasing the damage of Shadow Fissure by 40? The most significant nerf was lowering Glacial Spike's damage.

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    1 hour ago, Valhalen said:

    The KT nerfs were very minimal, imo. Increasing the mana cost of his abilities by 5? Seriously. Decreasing the damage of Shadow Fissure by 40? The most significant nerf was lowering Glacial Spike's damage.

    Don't forget the delay too. Also I'm pretty glad with what they've did with KT recently. It seems they want him to be very powerful... in a certain niche. I think that's really nice to have heroes good for different things and have counters rather than an all star that is extremely OP (take Ragnaros when he was released for example). 

    Butcher looks playable... again, but his last nerfs hurt him too much.

    As for Ana coming up, now she looks like the ultimate double support hero. I can't wait to try her on PTR.

    Edited by Maxkitty

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    10 hours ago, Fliits said:

    Heroes in line to get reworks ASAP:

    Tyrael (weak in general)

    Medivh (weak in general)

    Sgt. Hammer (problems w/ variation)

    The Butcher (problems w/ variation)

    Lost Vikings (problems w/ variation)

    Tyrande (what is she even supposed to be?)

    Man, talk about Tyrael being in need; I'd say ER.

    I'd add Nova- her first "update" didn't actually help her, they just took most of her burst damage away, and her burst was the only thing she had going for her, every other stealthy assassin (heck, even Samuro) is better than her in all aspects, she still suffers from being a "feast or famine" Hero imho. And they have revisited Heroes who have gotten a rework in the past (Arthas, Anub', Kael'thas, ETC)

    and everyone's favorite Marshall Jimmy- I get that he is meant to be a simple-to-use Hero (that didn't stop Valla from getting a rework, others as well), but he has some pretty weird stuff like talents meants for Specialists and he too suffers from "always same build" syndrome, which is one of the key reasons a Hero should get a talent tree rework.

    Edited by SteveFrost

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    10 minutes ago, SteveFrost said:

    Man, talk about Tyrael being in need; I'd say ER.

    I'd add Nova- her first "update" didn't actually help her, they just took most of her burst damage away, and her burst was the only thing she had going for her, every other stealthy assassin (heck, even Samuro) is better than her in all aspects, she still suffers from being a "feast or famine" Hero imho. And they have revisited Heroes who have gotten a rework in the past (Arthas, Anub', Kael'thas, ETC)

    and everyone's favorite Marshall Jimmy- I get that he is meant to be a simple-to-use Hero (that didn't stop Valla from getting a rework, others as well), but he has some pretty weird stuff like talents meants for Specialists and he too suffers from "always same build" syndrome, which is one of the key reasons a Hero should get a talent tree rework.

    I was going to add both of those, but wasn't sure about either of them.

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    2 hours ago, Maxkitty said:

    Don't forget the delay too. Also I'm pretty glad with what they've did with KT recently. It seems they want him to be very powerful... in a certain niche. I think that's really nice to have heroes good for different things and have counters rather than an all star that is extremely OP (take Ragnaros when he was released for example). 

    Butcher looks playable... again, but his last nerfs hurt him too much.

    As for Ana coming up, now she looks like the ultimate double support hero. I can't wait to try her on PTR.

    I still think KT needs more impactful nerfs. His combos are way too powerful.

    As for The Butcher, he is my favorite Assassin, but his nerfs were needed. Under the right conditions he can snowball the entire match easily with his ever growing power.

    Ana will be so fun in any double support team. It is ironic because Blizzard has been tuning healers to decrease the effectiveness of the Double Support Meta, yet Ana's addition will make it stronger than ever.

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    23 minutes ago, Valhalen said:

    I still think KT needs more impactful nerfs. His combos are way too powerful.

    As for The Butcher, he is my favorite Assassin, but his nerfs were needed. Under the right conditions he can snowball the entire match easily with his ever growing power.

    Ana will be so fun in any double support team. It is ironic because Blizzard has been tuning healers to decrease the effectiveness of the Double Support Meta, yet Ana's addition will make it stronger than ever.

    What makes me think is why they thought a 50 sec cooldown on her 'mage type stim drone' ult would not be brokenly powerful with heroes such as Kael and Jaina. Imho it should be at least 80 sec like stim drone, as it's impacts are about the same, if not better. That's broken on paper and ingame. How they thought that was fine, I have no damn clue. 

    Edited by Maxkitty

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    On 19/09/2017 at 8:14 PM, Valhalen said:

    I still think KT needs more impactful nerfs. His combos are way too powerful.

    Even after the nerfs, I still see no problems in heading into fights 1v2 and that shouldn't be the case. As soon as that root lands, if the enemy is a non-tank aside from Azmodan (only post-nerf, pre-nerf it didn't matter), I know the fight is over and won.

    I shouldn't be able to comfortably walk into a team doing boss and then take that boss alone without them knowing what is happening before they are all low or dead.

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    5 minutes ago, Blainie said:

    Even after the nerfs, I still see no problems in heading into fights 1v2 and that shouldn't be the case. As soon as that root lands, if the enemy is a non-tank aside from Azmodan (only post-nerf, pre-nerf it didn't matter), I know the fight is over and won.

    I shouldn't be able to comfortably walk into a team doing boss and then take that boss alone without them knowing what is happening before they are all low or dead.

    Exactly. Launch Kael'thas had a similar problem, where his bread and butter combo W > E > Q (and all it's variants) was pretty much a one shot like Kel'Thuzad. They nerfed the crap out of him, but he is still playable, carrying a respectable impact during team fight, and still is VERY annoying, but doesn't break the game anymore.

    I know the main flavor of Kel'Thuzad is to have those powerful combos as well, but tuning them down wouldn't make the character unplayable. The damage nerf to Glacial Spike was a good start.

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    23 hours ago, Valhalen said:

    Exactly. Launch Kael'thas had a similar problem, where his bread and butter combo W > E > Q (and all it's variants) was pretty much a one shot like Kel'Thuzad. They nerfed the crap out of him, but he is still playable, carrying a respectable impact during team fight, and still is VERY annoying, but doesn't break the game anymore.

    I know the main flavor of Kel'Thuzad is to have those powerful combos as well, but tuning them down wouldn't make the character unplayable. The damage nerf to Glacial Spike was a good start.

    I wonder if bigger indicators for the spells might work - something that perhaps acts as a warning before things hit, either with a longer delay or a "ghost trail" that shows where it will hit for all abilities. Either the combo needs to do less damage, or should be far harder to pull off. Maybe even some kind of increased GCD so you can't spam spells.

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    1 hour ago, Blainie said:

    I wonder if bigger indicators for the spells might work - something that perhaps acts as a warning before things hit, either with a longer delay or a "ghost trail" that shows where it will hit for all abilities. Either the combo needs to do less damage, or should be far harder to pull off. Maybe even some kind of increased GCD so you can't spam spells.

    I think that a bit of both (nerf his damage and make it harder to pull off), much like Kael'thas and Jaina are right, where they truly shine when having the aid of their team to set up and/or follow up the Skill Combos, but not being very effective when doing it alone. I think that would solve this issue of Kael'thas carrying the entire team.

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    On 9/23/2017 at 4:50 PM, Valhalen said:

    I think that a bit of both (nerf his damage and make it harder to pull off), much like Kael'thas and Jaina are right, where they truly shine when having the aid of their team to set up and/or follow up the Skill Combos, but not being very effective when doing it alone. I think that would solve this issue of Kael'thas carrying the entire team.

    Yeah - being capable of winning a 1v1 is fine. Perhaps introducing a damage reduction when his spells hit a certain amount of heroes? If it's more than one, then the damage is split between all hit.

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        The combination on our end of being able to manipulate Tower damage and the stacking Armor debuff gives us a lot of room to manipulate exactly how we want these interactions to feel going forward, and gives us good tuning knobs to decide how much defensive power is from the Tower itself or from the nearby enemy Heroes who are there to defend it
        Issues With The Current System
        We believe Towers are currently too punishing to consistently create the cool, high-tension moments we described above. They currently hit too hard to make those moments happen as often or as long as we’d like them to
        Many players don’t like how much they have to change their behavior when near enemy Towers, particularly the ones near the Gates, mainly due to splash damage inadvertently causing Towers to attack them
        A lot of the map is now more dangerous than before, making it less possible to fight enemy Heroes, particularly in the early game. This exacerbates issues we already have with our desire to make the laning phase of the game more interesting
        When too powerful (which we believe it currently is), it disincentivizes players from pushing with their map objectives, which can make those moments feel less awesome
        Some players just like the way things have been for years, and don’t want such a large change to a fundamental aspect of the game. While not a commanding reason to never make changes, it is something we always try to keep in mind, and why we think the bar needs to be high in order to keep these kinds of fundamental changes to game systems
        Now that we’ve covered where we’re at, here are some potential ideas that we have been debating to help make things better if we decide to keep the changes. We could end up doing none of these or all of them, and we’re open to other ideas from you!
        Change all structures to prioritize Map Objectives before anything else Pros
        It would fix players not wanting to push with Map Objectives Cons
        It adds another rule that can be unintuitive for the defending players since they will not always be defended by their Towers, only most of the time, which can be confusing and goes against the primary goal of Towers “feeling” smart in how they work
        Towers don’t defend their teammates in the moments of the game when they need them most
        Change Tower aggro so that the front Towers prioritize Minions, but the Forts, Keeps, and Kings Core prioritize Heroes who attack other Heroes Pros
        The early game would better reward aggression and pushing, and less of the map would be as dangerous as it currently is with the new system Players could attack gates without feeling like their splash damage could get them into trouble Cons
        It adds complexity to the game with two different Aggro rules depending on the Structure
        Lower the damage that Structures do to Heroes Pros
        Towers won’t be as directly threatening themselves, which mitigates the issue of them being too punishing in the early game Players will have more time to be aggressive with Tower diving and less immediately punished when Towers initially start to shoot them It puts the onus of properly defending towns more on the defending team, which incentivizes interaction between heroes Cons
        It makes Towers weaker, which could result in Tower diving being too prevalent.
        These are our thoughts on the current Anomaly. Thanks again for taking the time to read through our ideas. We’re now looking for feedback on how you feel about the current system, whether or not you would like to go back to the old system and why, or other ideas on how to improve the current one. We want to make a choice in the near future about what to do, so please be a Hero and give us your feedback – it will greatly help us in our tireless pursuit of constantly improving this game that we all love playing together.
      • By Stan
        While there are no plans to bring back Haunted Mines at this time, reddit user RockNerd33 did a drum cover of the original Haunted Mines soundrack for everyone to enjoy.
        For illustration, here's the original Haunted Mines Soundtrack if you haven't heard it yet.
        (Source)
      • By Oxygen
        Our twenty-ninth Heroes of the Storm Meta Tier list for the month of December is here!
        The latest meta tier list for December 2019 is here!
        Welcome to another Icy Veins's Meta Tier List for the December 3 patch. The goal of this list is to try and detail game's current metagame state. The prime goal of such lists is to inform players regarding popular and trending team composition drafting strategies (i.e. the drafting metagame).
        Using the list
         
        Current ranked mode map rotation
         
        Current anomaly
        Experience Globes. For more information about this Anomaly, simply refer to our Anomaly guide.
         
        Meta picks
        Tank Bruiser Fighter Stalker Marksman Mage Support Healer — Deathwing (new) (ban) — — — — — —  
        High-tier generalists
        Tank Bruiser Fighter Stalker Marksman Mage Support Healer E.T.C. (ban) — Alarak (ban) Zeratul — Jaina Abathur (ban) Ana↓ (ban) Diablo (ban)   Qhira      Kael'thas (ban)   Anduin (ban) Garrosh (ban)         Sylvanas   Uther↑ (ban) Johanna (ban)                
        Mid-tier generalists
        Tank Bruiser Fighter Stalker Marksman Mage Support Healer Anub'arak↓ Artanis Kerrigan Tracer Cassia Azmodan  Medivh Alexstrasza Arthas Chen↓ Maiev   Falstad Chromie Zarya Auriel Blaze Dehaka Malthael   Fenix Gul'dan   Brightwing↓ Mal'Ganis Imperius↓ Ragnaros   Greymane Junkrat    Deckard↓ Muradin Sonya Thrall   Hanzo Kel'Thuzad   Kharazim Stitches Yrel Varian   Lunara Li-Ming   Li Li Varian   Varian   Raynor Mephisto   Lt. Morales         Tychus Nazeebo   Lúcio         Valla Orphea   Malfurion         Zul'jin Zagara   Rehgar                 Stukov               Tyrande               Whitemane↑  
        Low-tier generalists
        Tank Bruiser Fighter Stalker Marksman Mage Support Healer — D.Va Gazlowe Genji↓ Sgt.Hammer↓ Probius — —     Murky Valeera             The Butcher            
        Situational picks (map, team composition, or counterpick)
        Tank Bruiser Fighter Stalker Marksman Mage Support Healer Cho'gall Leoric Illidan Nova — Cho'gall Tassadar — Tyrael Rexxar Xul Samuro     The Lost Vikings    
        Meta heroes define the metagame. They are very often banned or picked right away, as they generally dictate the pace of most drafts and matches.
        Generalists form the core of your team and are generally picked after Meta picks have been distributed. They tend to work on most maps, and as part of and against most team compositions. Since this group includes most heroes, I elected to split it into three tiers. High-tier rankings are a result of performance (i.e. win rates) and popularity (i.e. pick and ban rates). This means that heroes with high win rates can be set in low tier; the opposite may also be true.
        Situational picks shine on specific maps or as part of specific team compositions.
         
      • By Stan
        Blizzard released two new skins for Cassia and Tracer yesterday, but that did not stop community members from submitting their own skin concepts that are very well worth checking out! Here's Messenger Kharazim and Hades Ragnaros.

        Messenger Kharazim by Yasemin Baran (Source)

        Hades Ragnaros by Evangelos Callow (Source)
        Latest Heroes of the Storm News
        Heroes of the Storm Balance Patch: May 6th Mythic Pantheon Skins Now Live
      • By Stan
        A new balance patch has just hit the Nexus. Cassia and Tracer have been reworked and we have some changes to the latest Nexus Anomaly, Tassadar buffs, and more. Read on for more details!
        Earlier today, Blizzard released new skins for Cassia and Tracer. They went live before this patch.
        (Source)
        Heroes of the Storm has just been updated with Hero balance changes! Read on for details.
        Quick Navigation:
        General Collection Battlegrounds Heroes Rework Heroes Bug Fixes General
        Nexus Anomaly - A Call For Help Tower, Fort, and Keep structure damage reduced by 10%. Structures will only focus their attacks on enemy Heroes if they attack an allied Hero who is also in their range. Self-damage from Heroes will no longer cause structures to focus them. Periodic damage over time will no longer cause structures to focus Heroes. Return to Top
        Collection
        Awakened Dark Nexus Manta is now called Astral Dark Nexus Manta and vice versa, to better reflect their appearance. Return to Top
        Battlegrounds
        Hanamura Objective Missile damage increased from 1800 to 1900. Samurai Camp Laner version Health reduced from 8,000 to 7,200. Laner version Health scaling reduced by ~10%. Return to Top
        Heroes Rework
        Cassia
        Base
        Vitals Health reduced from 1840 to 1510. Health Regeneration reduced from 3.83 to 3.15. Basic Attack Attack range increased from 4 to 4.5. Weapon period increased from .75 to 1. Attacks per second reduced from 1.33 to 1. Damage reduced from 130 to 122. Lightning Fury [Q] Damage reduced from 175 to 150. Cooldown increased from 4 to 5 seconds. Mana cost reduced from 30 to 25. Additional functionality: Holds 2 charges. Blinding Light [W] Mana cost reduced from 70 to 50. Fend [E] Damage reduced from 39 to 34. Cast range increased from 5 to 6. Cooldown increased from 8 to 10 seconds. Mana cost increased from 40 to 50. Additional functionality: Avoidance remains active while Fend is channeling. Avoidance [Trait] Duration increased from .5 to .625. New functionality: While moving unmounted, gradually gain 30 Armor of the course of 3 seconds. Talents
        Level 1 Thunderstroke New functionality: Increase the damage of Lightning Fury by 25 and casting it grants 5 stacks of Avoidance. Quest: Every Hero hit increases the damage of Lightning Fury by 1. Impale Moved from Level 7. Additional functionality: Increases the cast range and AoE of Fend by 25%. It deals 50% more damage to enemies below 50% Health. Charged Strikes New functionality: Gain 20% Attack Speed. Every 3rd Basic attack deals 20% bonus damage to the target and bounces to nearby enemy Heroes. Level 4 Inner Light New functionality: Activate to heal for 25% of your maximum Health over 5 seconds. Heroes hit with Lightning Fury lower this cooldown by 10 seconds (70 second cooldown). Ring of the Leech New functionality: Basic Attacks against heal Cassia for 15% of the damage they deal. If an enemy is Blinded this affects Lightning Fury and Fend. Plate of the Whale New functionality: Gain 7 HPS while Avoidance is active. Increase this to 21 HPS while Avoidance is fully charged. Avoidance is active while Mounted. Level 7 Seraph's Hymn New functionality: Increase the passive damage bonus of Blinding Light to 30%. Basic Attacks that hit enemy Heroes lower the cooldown of Blinding Light by 1.5 seconds and grant 10 Mana. Surge of Light Activation Damage increased from 210 to 300. Plate of the Whale New functionality: Gain 7 HPS while Avoidance is active. Increase this to 21 HPS while Avoidance is fully charged. Avoidance is active while Mounted. New Talent: Debilitating Thrusts Enemies hit by Fend are slowed by 30% for 3 seconds. Level 13 Grounding Bolt Removed. Thundergod's Vigor Removed. Lunging Strike Removed. New Talent: Gloves of Alacrity Basic Attack range is increased by 1. Increase this to 2 while Avoidance is fully charged. War Traveler Moved from Level 7. New functionality: Gain 5% Movement Speed and if Avoidance is maxed gain an additional 10% Movement Speed and your Mount time becomes instant. New Talent: War Matron Cassia is Protected while channeling Fend and for an additional 1 second if the channel is completed. Level 16 Pierce Removed. Penetrate Removed. New Talent: Power Strike Lightning Fury pierces. Hitting an enemy Hero with Lightning Fury marks them for 15 seconds. Once a player has 3 marks, cast a free Blinding Light at their feet. New Talent: Static Electricity Gain 2 more charges of Lightning Fury. Fend launches a Lightning Bolt at nearby Heroes upon arrival. Level 20 Infinite Lightning Cooldown refund per bounce from 3 to 5 seconds. Imprisoning Light The main target is Blinded for 5 seconds. Enemies knocked back take damage and are Rooted and Silenced for 3 seconds. Titan's Revenge New functionality: Basic Attacks ignore Armor and while Avoidance is fully charged, deal 20% bonus Attack Damage. New Talent: Rockstopper Activate: Instantly fully charge Avoidance and increase the Armor bonus to 60 for 4 seconds (30 second cooldown). Return to Top
        Tracer
        Base
        Weapon Range reduced from 5.5 to 5. Damage reduced from 26 to 24. Pulse Bomb charge gained from Basic Attacks increased by 25%. Max Health increased from 1280 to 1330. Health Regen reduced from 5.3 to 2.71. Melee [W] Pulse Bomb charge increased from 5/10% to 6/12%. Recall [E] Cooldown reduced from 30 to 20 seconds. Amount of time to Recall reduced from 3 to 2 seconds. Duration of Recall increased from .75 to 1.25 seconds. Pulse Bomb [R] Target damage reduced from 360 to 288. AoE damage reduced from 180 to 144. Reload [Trait] Added functionality: Tracer gains 15% life steal on her Basic Attacks. Talents
        Level 1 Pulse Strike [W] Removed. Parting Gift [E] Moved from Level 4. Damage increased from 240 to 250. Added functionality: Each Hero hit by Parting Gift bombs grants 5% Pulse Bomb charge. Slipstream [E] Removed. Tracer Rounds [Passive] New functionality: Increase Tracer’s Basic Attack range by 10% (.5). Attacks against Heroes reveal a small area around them for 3 seconds. New Talent: One-Two Punch [W] Lower the cooldown of Melee by 1 second. It gains an additional charge with a 2 second cooldown between casts. Level 4 New Talent: Pulse Generator [R1] Sticking a Hero with Pulse Bomb regenerates 25% of max HP over 1.5 seconds and refunds a charge of Blink. Is That a Health Pack?! [Passive] Added functionality: Collecting a regen globe reduces the cooldown of Healing Fountain by 10 seconds. Leeching Rounds Moved from Level 13. New functionality: Increase the Life Leech on your Basic Attacks by 5% for each Blink charge you currently have. Level 7 Sleight of Hand [Trait] Moved from Level 16. Focus Fire [Trait] Moved from Level 16. Locked and Loaded [Trait] Moved from Level 16. Leeching Rounds Removed. Level 10 Quantum Spike [R] New Functionality: Deals an extra 6% of maximum health as damage to Heroes. Level 13 Jumper [Q] New functionality: Blink grants a shield equal to 6% of maximum health for 3 seconds. This shield stacks up to 3 times. While Blink has no charges remaining, its cooldown recharges 125% faster. Bullet Time [Q] Removed. Untouchable [Q/Passive] Moved from Level 4. New functionality: Passively increases the distance of Blink by 33%. Takedowns grant 5% increased Basic Attack damage, up to 30%. Stacks are lost on death. New Talent: Telefrag [E] Basic Attacks reduce the cooldown of Recall by .1875 seconds. After arriving at the recall destination, Tracer deals 160 damage and knocks back any nearby enemies. Level 16 Bullet Spray [W] Moved from Level 13. New Talent: Heavy-Handed [W] W reduces hero armor by 15 for 4 seconds. Ricochet Moved from Level 13. Bounce chance increased from 50 to 60%. Level 20 New Talent: Chrono Triggers [Q] Casting Blink causes Basic Attacks to consume no ammo for 1 second. Get Stuffed! [W] New functionality: Increase Melee’s Pulse Bomb generation against Heroes from 12% to 24%. Hitting a Hero with Melee while they have a Pulse Bomb attached causes it to explode instantly and knock them away. Total Recall [E] No longer increases the cooldown of Recall. Return to Top
        Heroes
        BRUISER HEALER MELEE RANGED Artanis Anduin Alarak Chromie Deathwing Brightwing   Jaina Dehaka Deckard   Li-Ming Imperius     Orphea Ragnaros     Probius Xul     Tassadar Return to Top
        Bruiser
        Artanis
        Base
        Health increased from 2470 to 2525. Health Regeneration increased from 5.14 to 5.26. Shield Overload [Trait] Shield amount increased from 375 to 385. Talents
        Level 1 Seasoned Marksman [Passive] Removed. Reactive Parry [W] New functionality: Damaging enemies with the first slash of Twin Blades grants Artanis 75 Physical Armor against the next enemy Hero Basic Attack. If the target is an enemy Hero, then the second slash grants Artanis an additional stack. Stores up to 2 charges. New Talent: Protector of Aiur [Passive] Quest: Basic Attacks against enemy Heroes increase Artanis’s Attack Damage by .1%. Takedowns grant 1% bonus damage. Level 7 Warp Sicknesss [E] Removed. Chrono Surge [E] Attack Speed bonus reduced from 75% to 40%. Additional functionality: Phase Prism Slows the enemy’s Movement Speed by 30% for 4 seconds. Return to Top
        Deathwing
        Base
        Health reduced from 2850 to 2750. Health Regeneration reduced from 5.94 to 5.73. Cataclysm [R1] Periodic damage reduced from 10 to 9. Talents
        Level 4 Heat Wave [W] Damage after using Incinerate reduced from 14 to 12 per second. Level 7 Firestorm [Z] Additional functionality: Reduce Deathwing’s landing cooldowns by 2 seconds. Skyfall [E] No longer reduces Deathwing’s landing cooldowns when hitting enemy Heroes. Healing increased from 2.5% to 3% maximum Health. Return to Top
        Dehaka
        Base
        Dark Swarm [W] Damage increased from 47 to 49. Talents
        Level 7 Constriction [Q] Removed. Paralyzing Enzymes [Q] Moved from Level 16. Adjusted functionality: Increase Drag duration by .5 seconds. After it ends, enemies hit are Slowed by 30% for 2.5 seconds. Level 16 New talent: Pack Leader [Z] While Dehaka is in a bush and for 5 seconds after leaving, he gains 20 Armor. Return to Top
        Imperius
        Talents
        Level 13 Pathetic Mortals [Q] Additional functionality: Reduce the Movement Speed of enemy Heroes hit by Celestial Charge by 25% for 4 seconds. Return to Top
        Ragnaros
        Talents
        Level 10 Sulfuras Smash [R1] Cooldown reduced from 80 to 60 seconds. Mana cost reduced from 75 to 70. Damage to enemies hit by its outer area increased from 198 to 250. Return to Top
        Xul
        Base
        Basic Attack damage reduced from 100 to 95. Spectral Scythe [Q] Damage reduced from 210 to 200. Raise Skeleton [Trait] Damage done when Skeletal Warriors die reduced from 50 to 46. Talents
        Level 4 Jailors [Trait] Movement and Attack Speed bonuses reduced from 40% to 30%. Level 13 Echoes of Death [Q] Damage from additional scythes reduced from 60% to 40%. Level 16 Decrepify [Q] Slow amount reduced from 40% to 30%. Return to Top
        Healer
        Anduin
        Talents
        Level 4 Holy Reach [E] New functionality: Increase the Root duration of Chastise from 1.25 to 1.5 seconds. After hitting an enemy with Chastise, Anduin’s next Basic Attack deals 75% more damage and heals allied Heroes near him for 100. Level 13 Speed of the Pious [W] Additional functionality: Each allied Hero healed by Divine Star on its return to Anduin reduces its cooldown by 1 second. Enchant Boots - Lion's Speed [Trait] Additional functionality: Allies pulled by Leap of Faith are healed for 280 over 4 seconds. Push Forward! [Passive] Now labelled as a Chastise talent [E] Additional functionality: While gaining 20% bonus Movement Speed, Chastise’s cooldown recharges 25% faster. Level 20 Desperate Prayer [Active] No longer places Flash Heal on a 10-second cooldown. Return to Top
        Brightwing
        Base
        Polymorph [W] Slow amount increased from 25% to 30%. Pixie Dust [E] Spell Armor amount increased from 25 to 30. Phase Shift [Z] Cooldown reduced from 60 to 50 seconds. Healing increased from 20% to 25% maximum Health. Talents
        Level 1 Hyper Shift [Z] Cooldown reduction reduced from 2 to 1.5 seconds. Level 4 Magic Spit [Passive] Cooldown reduction increased from 5 to 6 seconds. Level 7 Critical Mist [Trait] Healing increased from 150 to 165. Return to Top
        Deckard
        Base
        Health increased from 1700 to 1780. Health Regeneration increased from 3.54 to 3.71. Talents
        Level 1 Scroll of Identify [E] Quest requirement reduced from 16 to 14 enemy Heroes hit. Level 4 Ruby [Active] Cooldown reduced from 20 to 10 seconds. Level 10 Lorenado [R2] Cooldown reduced from 40 to 30 seconds. Mana cost reduced from 40 to 35. Return to Top
        Melee Assassin
        Alarak
        Talents
        Level 1 Sustaining Power [E] Removed. New Talent: Overwhelming Power [Q] After hitting an enemy Hero with Discord Strike, Alarak gains 40% Attack Speed and his Basic Attacks heal him for 50% of the damage dealt for 4 seconds. Level 7 Hindered Motion [W] Slow amount increased from 25% to 30%. Return to Top
        Ranged Assassin
        Chromie
        Base
        Dragon's Breath [W] Damage increased from 204 to 215. Talents
        Level 5 Bronze Talons [Q] Damage bonus increased from 40% to 50%. Mobius Loop [W] Cooldown reduction increased from 1.75 to 2 seconds. Level 8 Slowing Sands [R1] Slow amount increased from 5% to 7% per stack. Maximum Slow amount is still 70%. Level 14 Quantum Overdrive [Active] Spell Power bonus increased from 25% to 30%. Level 20 Blessing of the Bronze [Active] Cooldown reduced from 90 to 30 seconds. Cooldown reduction when hitting enemy Heroes with Sand Blast reduced from 8 to 1 second. Return to Top
        Jaina
        Talents
        Level 16 Snowstorm [W] Damage bonuses increased from 30%/70% to 50%/100%. Return to Top
        Li-Ming
        Talents
        Level 10 Disintegrate [R1] Cooldown reduced from 30 to 20 seconds. Wave of Force [R2] Cooldown increased from 20 to 30 seconds. Return to Top
        Orphea
        Base
        Shadow Waltz [Q] Cooldown reduced from 6 to 5 seconds. Mana cost reduced from 40 to 35. Chomp [W] Damage increased from 285 to 305. Dread [E] Additional functionality: Enemies hit by Dread’s wave are Slowed by 25% for 2 seconds. Talents
        Level 1 Growing Nightmare [E] New functionality: Increase Dread’s eruption damage by 40%. Quest: Hit 3 enemy Heroes with a single cast of Dread’s eruption. Reward: Permanently increase Dread’s eruption damage by an additional 25% and increase the Slow amount of Dread’s eruption by 15%. Level 4 Chaotic Assault [Trait] Bonus damage increased from 50% to 75%. Level 13 Abyssal Symbiosis [W] Additional functionality: Hitting an enemy Hero with Chomp grants Orphea a 180 Shield for 3 seconds. Level 16 Dead Magic [Trait] Damage reduced from 115 to 95. Now also does damage to the primary target. Lurking Terror [Active] Slow duration increased from 1 to 1.5 seconds. Return to Top
        Probius
        Talents
        Level 1 Warp Resonance [W] Quest requirement reduced from 10/20 enemy Heroes hit with Warp Rift explosions to 8/16. Level 4 Photon Barrier [E] Spell Armor bonus increased from 30 to 40. Level 7 Particle Accelerator [Q] Damage increased from 10% to 15% per stack. Level 10 Null Gate [R2] Cooldown reduced from 30 to 25 seconds. Level 20 Gate Keeper [R2] No longer has a restriction allowing 1 Null Gate at a time. Return to Top
        Tassadar
        Base
        Health increased from 1550 to 1650. Health Regeneration increased from 3.23 to 3.44. Shock Ray [Q] Slow amount increased from 25% to 30%. Force Wall [E] Cooldown reduced from 21 to 18 seconds. Mana cost reduced from 70 to 65. Cast time reduced from .1 seconds to .0625 seconds. Birth time reduced from .5675 seconds to .5 seconds. Resonance Beam [Trait] Slow amount increased from 10% to 15%. Talents
        Level 1 Static Charge [Q] Bonus damage per stack increased from 4 to 5. Maximum bonus damage increased from 200 to 250. Khaydarin Amulet [Trait] Damage to additional targets increased from 50% to 75%. Level 4 Induction [Q] Movement Speed bonus when casting Shock Ray increased from 15% to 20%. Movement Speed bonus when hitting an enemy Hero increased from 25% to 30%. Level 16 Executor's Will [Active] Spell Power bonus increased from 15% to 20%. Return to Top
        Bug Fixes
        General
        Fixed an issue where locked talents could appear to be able to be selected in game, causing confusion. Heroes
        Cho'gall Disconnected player replacement A.I. for Gall will no longer become passive. Deathwing Disconnected player replacement Deathwing A.I. will no longer becomes stuck in the air during Dragonflight. He will land in Destroyer form once he reaches full health. Disconnected player replacement Deathwing A.I. will use Dragonflight in place of Hearthstone to heal, unless Dragonflight is on cooldown. Murky Fixed an issue that caused Murky A.I. to continually attempt to place an egg outside of follow leash range. Nova Nova Holo Decoys no longer incorrectly take triple damage. They now correctly take double damage. Tassadar Shadow Walk now has proper fat finger protection. Zagara Fixed an issue with Zagara A.I. becoming stuck in the Nydus Worm if the player disconnects. Cassia and Tracer have been reworked in the latest Heroes patch.
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