Feb 10 Balance Changes Summary

This opinions mentioned in this article were sent into us by a member of the ANZ community.

Earlier this week Blizzard deployed a new balance patch, and in the lead up to it going live, there was much speculation that newcomer Li-Ming and ‘OP’ Reghar would get hit with the nerf bat. Interestingly enough Li-Ming escaped persecution and Rehgar only received a slight tap on the wrist. Read on to see what changes have been made to which hero, and how this may affect the meta.

Patch Change Summary:

Falstad

  • Hammerang (Q)
    • BOOMerang (Talent)
      • Damage increased from 121 (+4% per level) to 150 (+4% per level)
  • Hinterland Blast (R)
    • Base damage increased from 411 (+4.75% per level) to 475 (+4.75% per level)

I expect to see Falstad picked up as an Assassin a bit more, less as just a utility/soaker.

If Falstad was tier 1 before, his OP tier now, purely due to the options on the hero.

Drafting against a team that takes an early Falstad, could be difficult to forecast.

Falstad would be picked up for the Disengage/Gust mechanic & late game AA impact.

Now Falstad can act as a Gust Disengage, or a hard follow-up hero. I expect to see more Falstad/Zagara synergy comps now, as a result of this change.

Jaina

  • Basic Attack damage reduced from 89 (+4% per level) to 60 (+4% per level)
  • Frostbolt (Q)
    • Damage increased from 160 (+4% per level) to 190 (+4% per level)
  • Cone of Cold (E)
    • Damage increased from 189 (+4% per level) to 200 (+4% per level)

Due to the lowered Basic Attack & the increased Q/E Damage; I expect to see more Jaina.

Jaina Q Build aka the ‘Korean meta’ is definitely going to pop up more often with the massive increase to its base damage; obviously making the reset Q/high skirmish build, more viable.

29 points of damage per basic attack have been removed, but 30 points of damage to Q & 11 points of damage to E, will bring up her build potential; but will lower her sustain a bit.

These changes offer more dynamics for Talent choices, I feel; whilst lowering the DPS lost from effects like blind. Jaina therefore really is now, a burst hero.

Kael’thas

  • Basic Attack damage reduced from 87 (+4% per level) to 65 (+4% per level)
  • Arcane Barrier (Talent)
    • Shield amount decreased from 200% to 150%
    • Duration reduced from 6 to 4 seconds
  • Gravity Lapse (E)
    • Stun duration reduced from 1.5 to 1.0 seconds
  • Phoenix (R)
    • Cooldown increased from 40 to 60 seconds
  • Pyroblast (R)
    • Damage increased from 730 (+4% per level) to 810 (+5% per level)
    • Cooldown increased from 50 to 100 seconds
    • Presence of Mind (Talent)
      • Cooldown reduction for Pyroblast increased from 10 to 25 seconds per enemy hero hit

Basic attack damage lost is quite substantial for poking reasons (especially early game)

Gravity Lapse stun reduction does increase the talent viability, and since it could be used on 4 people before, I think this change does lower the hero tier from OP, to tier 1.

Increase Pheonix cooldown doesn’t make it useless, but does increase the need to test Pyro against specific comps, as it can’t be used so pointlessly on camps, but still has far more teamfight applications then pyro.

Increase to Pyro cool, for the damage trade off, definitely doesn’t make it worth it. Unless you have a strong level lead, I wouldn’t be taking Pyro @ 10; it doesn’t give enough security.

I expect less of the Netherwind talent, and less of the Arcane barrier talent being used now

As a Kael player; I would suggest experimenting with Manatap on the right maps & GP @ lvl 4.

Additionally I would default to Backdraft or Dbl Flamestrike @ 16, unless versing Zeratul/Greymane & suffering heavily because of it.

Nova

Snipe (Q)

  • Damage increased from 268 (+4% per level) to 295 (+4% per level)
  • Snipe Master (Talent)
    • Damage bonus increased from 5% to 12% per stack
    • Maximum stack bonus increased from 50% to 60%
    • Maximum stacks decreased from 10 to 5

Having played Nova in the last patch, she really went from (ok in some HL games) to absolutely ratshit, the idea of missing one skillshot and coping such a progress nerf was boring, though I do like the new playstyle crediting skill. The new changes give her more viability, but may not yet give her the edge she needs for competitive.

I would argue Nova is going to increase in both pickrate outside of comps & will perhaps see some comp play now. Her Damage charts In a 6-10 second timeframe, are actually up a lot & considering you don’t need kills/GP, rather only need to land 5 x Q’s, it’s really easy to see how her damage will spike.

Thrall

  • Basic Attack damage reduced from 173 (+4% per level) to 165 (+4% per level)
  • Sundering (R)
    • Cooldown increased from 70 to 80 seconds

Minor nerf, he’ll still get picked & used regularly.

Diablo

Fire Stomp (W)

  • Fire Devil (Talent)
    • Damage reduced from 23 (+4% per level) to 17 (+4% per level)

Minor nerf, he’ll still get picked & used regularly.

Reghar

  • Ghost Wolf (Trait) (D)
    • Basic Attack damage bonus reduced from 100% to 75%
  • Lightning Shield (W)
    • Damage reduced from 36 (+4% per level) to 30 (+4% per level)

In my opinion, Reghar was OP after the patch changes. Lightning shield win rate was off the charts & he needed the nerf. This should also increase the use of the other lightning shield talent (cast on self) as the single lightning shield will not have the same impact early game, it did before. This credits Reghar in the way of forcing him to be a more aggressive support.

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