Heroes of the Storm

Hero balance discussion

HeroesoftheStorm 8 - Hero balance discussion
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Well, hello guys!

Let's start with that I enjoy playing HotS for well over a year now, though I personally have been on the verge of quitting for various reasons related to the state of the game at several times. While I personally don't feel that way right now, I do notice from what I read and see when watching streams that many people are at this point in time. That leads to a question, and that is what would need to be changed in order for people to keep playing, or to rekindle their interest in the game?

Preparing my answer to that question, even just focusing on a single aspect of the answer (hero balance) took me a fair amount of time. Since we are discussing something that is very subjective from the get-go – when asking "what we would improve about HotS" to ten different people you would end up getting ten different answers. As such, this makes it that things require to be much more written out than would otherwise be the case.

Because the post quickly turned into my own attempt – I am complaining after all – and for my attempt I decided to be an armchair developer, making my own Balance Patch. If you complain – try to do better, and you'll be the judge. Below is what I would change tomorrow if I could.

This comes with a significant number of caveats that I want to address first:

– I focus on a relatively high level meta. I do assume people know what the fuck they are doing, and I do assume people will hit the overwhelming majority of their skillshots when I propose changes. You just can't balance a game around people that are clueless, position badly, fail to hit skillshots, and so on.

– It is by no means perfect. Mostly because I am a human, which tends to come with annoying traits like subjective personal preferences even when you try to avoid them.

– These ideas are centered around game balance. As such, I leave other aspects of the game that I would personally adjust, like certain maps, the report system and the matchmaker, out of this post though I might talk about these in the future.

– I am not a real game developer – which means I can suggest more radical changes to stir up some discussion here. Radical changes I only put in this post if I personally believe said change would be an improvement over the status quo either immidiately or within a few more balance patches as the numbers would inevitably need to be adjusted.

It also means that I have no access to the internal statistics that the actual HotS developers have.

Just as important is the answer to the question what your aims would be, so people can see where you are coming from:

– No longer just banning/playing the same heroes over and over again: With several heroes being overpowered or flat out broken and being consistently banned for over a year, there is just not enough room to ban things specific to a map, or things that you just hate to play against. Diablo, Garrosh and Anub'arak are probably the biggest offenders since they are very powerful at all ranks, but Zeratul, Hanzo, Genji and Maiev are all sources of frustration in their own right at higher ranks. I don't know about you, but I am sick of seeing the same heroes over and over again.

– Mobility creep: Heroes that have too much mobility need to be punished elsewhere in their kit.

– Adjusting unbalanceable hero kits to be at least more workable to play with, to play against, or both, preferably without changing too much how the hero plays mechanically.

– While game balance is not just numbers, when numbers are the actual issue with a certain hero, you have to pick a power level you consider balanced. Winrates are not the only relevant statistic here… pickrate and banrate are far more important. Characters with a high pickrate should have a low winrate, and vice-versa. Characters with a high skill ceiling should have a lower winrate as well.

– Slowing down the pace of battle: CC and burst, anyone? While this did not decide much which heroes I decided to adjust (see above) it did decide how I would adjust them, and as you will probably see below many changes are focused on increasing survivability and decreasing damage rather than the other way around.

Will the game be better after making these changes? I'd like to think so – it is why I make this post in the first place – but I am not arrogant to assume it will be a guaranteed improvement especially in the first couple of weeks that it would take for everybody to adjust to the meta changes.

As for a TLDR for those who skipped that long introduction:

Nerf things that everybody picks or bans, make things that see very little play a little stronger while simultaneously attempting to adjust strange abilities into something more workable for the future. I would hope to see a lot of discussion below about how everybody feels about the hero balance right now.

Total: 30 heroes

Tanks: 10

Anub'arak

Diablo

E.T.C.

Garrosh

Johanna

Mal'ganis

Muradin

Stitches

Tyrael

Xul

Bruisers: 3

Imperius

Ragnaros

Varian

Melee Assassins: 3

Maiev

Valeera

Zeratul

Ranged Assassins: 9

Cassia

Genji

Hanzo

Jaina

Mephisto

Orphea

Sylvanas

Valla

Zagara

Healer: 4

Ana

Auriel

Li Li

Lt. Morales

Support: 0

Note: Heroes that are either being reworked right now, or need a full rework in my opinion, I decided to leave mostly alone in this post.

TANKS:

Anub'arak:

Basic Attack damage reduced from 81 to 77.

Impale (Q):

Stun duration reduced from 1 second to 0.75 seconds.

Burrow Charge (E):

Stun duration reduced from 0.5 seconds to 0.25 seconds. Slow duration reduced from 2.5 seconds to 2.25 seconds.

Cocoon (R):

Cocoon range reduced from 6 to 5.

Cooldown increased from 70 to 90 seconds.

Locust Swarm (R):

Locust Swarm mana cost reduced from 100 to 50.

Additional Functionality: Gain a permanent Vampire Locust that attacks a nearby enemy every 3 seconds. The Vampire Locust deals 74 damage and returns to heal you for 37 health.

Talents:

Level 20:

Hive Master

Adjusted Functionality: Anub'arak gains a second permanent Vampire Locust. The cooldown of Locust Swarm is reduced by 30 seconds.

Rewind: Removed.

My personal comments:

Anub'arak is one of the strongest warriors, especially in high level play. Nerfing his go-to ultimate and his stun durations should help with that.

Anub also gets a damage reduction, but I gave one to most tanks, but a Tankpocalypse is better than many alternatives. That being said, I tried to take measures to prevent a true Tankpocalypse, as the Locust Swarm buffs show, tanks should have options other than CC-and-burst.

Diablo:

Health reduced from 2618 to 2567.

Health Regeneration reduced from 5.4542 to 5.3515.

Basic Attack speed reduced from 0.95 attacks per second to 0.875 attacks per second.

Basic Attack damage reduced from 105 to 99.

Shadow Charge (Q):

Damage for slamming enemies into walls is reduced from 120 to 100.

Fire Stomp (W):

Damage reduced from 12 to 11 and from 36 to 33.

Overpower (E):

Damage reduced from 73 to 64.

Talents:

Level 7:

Malevolence:

Damage reduced from 100 to 90.

My personal comments:

The main reason Dibbles is being banned all the time is because he deals disgusting amounts of damage for a tank while also being one of the most durable. Reducing those numbers should help with that. Reducing his cooldowns and increasing his W mana cost changed jack squat – Diablo does not have to engage an enemy when he isn't ready, and there are few Warriors with better engage than him.

E.T.C.:

Basic Attack damage reduced from 99 to 94.

Rockstar (Trait): Now has the area it affects marked on the ground when E.T.C. picks talents that do so (Prog Rock, Block Party, Speed Metal).

Powerslide (Q):

Damage reduced from 91 to 86.

Face Melt (W)

Damage reduced from 68 to 61.

Talents:

Level 1:

Guitar Hero: Removed

New Talent: Oriental Influence

After Powerslide ends, E.T.C.'s movement speed is increased by 30% which decays over 2 seconds.

Level 4:

Crowd Surfer:

Additional functionality: Increase the range of Powerslide by 15%.

Speed Metal:

Additional functionality: While Guitar Solo is active, E.T.C. heals for 50% of his damage dealt by Basic Attacks.

Level 7:

Hammer-on:

Additional functionality: Increase E.T.C.'s maximum health by 5%.

Level 13:

Encore: Removed

Face Smelt:

Additional functionality: Enemy Heroes hit by Face Melt now also have their Attack Speed reduced by 50% for 2 seconds.

New Talent: Doom Metal:

Activate to reduce the Spell Power of a target enemy (9 range) by 50% for 4 seconds. Cooldown: 40 seconds.

Level 16:

Imposing Presence: Removed

New Talent: Dragons, Elves and Foxes:

Activate to grant E.T.C. and all nearby allied Heroes (within 2 range) Unstoppable and 25 Spell Armor for 1 second, while also healing them for 95 health (+4% per level) Cooldown: 100 seconds.

My personal comments:

The cow is, in terms of power-level, in a fine spot. However, his talent diversity is almost nonexistant on some tiers.

As for the name of that level 16 talent… well, could've called it Power Metal, or just embrace the memes that this genre spawned.

Garrosh:

Basic Attack damage reduced from 137 to 130.

Bloodthirst (W):

Damage reduced from 156 to 141.

Wrecking Ball (E):

Cooldown increased from 14 to 20 seconds.

My personal comments:

Meh. I didn't really know what to do with him, so I just reduced the availability of Wrecking Ball. I don't think this will reduce his banrate too much for the same reason as the cooldown changes on Diablo did not change anything in the 27th of February balance patch. This cooldown change is much more significant, so it should reduce his winrate. If I'd make more significant changes, this would undoubtedly evolve into a full rework, so it is one to save for later.

Johanna:

Basic Attack damage reduced from 99 to 97.

Punish (Q):

Damage reduced from 111 to 92.

If Punish is used against an enemy hit in the last 4 seconds by Shield Glare, this enemy is Stunned for 0.25 seconds in addition to the Slow.

Shield Glare (E):

Damage reduced from 59 to 53.

Blessed Shield (R):

Damage reduced from 114 to 103.

Falling Sword (R):

Passive: Johanna now deals 12 damage (+4% per level) per second to nearby enemies.

Talents:

Level 1:

Reinforce:

Adjusted functionality: Physical Armor per stack reduced from 75% to 55%.

Additional functionality: Johanna now has 20 Physical Armor permanently.

Level 13:

Roar:

Percentages increased from 25% to 50% and from 125% to 150%.

Fanaticism: Moved from level 16

Level 16:

Holy Fury: Moved from level 13

New functionality: Johanna's Basic Attacks splash nearby enemies now for 25% of their normal damage. Hitting enemy Heroes with any spell damage empowers your next Basic Attack against enemy Heroes by 30%, stacking up to 6 times.

Level 20:

Radiating Faith:

Additional functionality: Increase Johanna's maximum health by 25%.

My personal comments:

She's in a good spot, if a little boring to play (hence the slightly reworked Q), though she does have a few iffy talents or talents that are otherwise underused. A few small adjustments here and there to help her out. Note that her AA nerf is less than 5%, but her Q damage nerf is fairly significant.

Mal'ganis:

Basic Attack damage reduced from 100 to 89

Attack Speed increased from 0.91 to 1.05 attacks per second.

Vampiric Touch:

Healing against Heroes increased from 10 to 12.5% and against non-Heroes from 45 to 50%.

Night Rush (E):

New Functionality: Night Rush no longer Sleeps. Instead, it Slows enemies hit by 80% that decays over 2 seconds. For this duration, they deal 50% less damage.

Dark Conversion (R):

New Functionality: Channel on an enemy Hero for 0.5 seconds. You regain health equal to the target enemy's health over 2 seconds and have 50 Armor while regaining health.

Cooldown: 60 seconds

Mana Cost: 50

Talents:

Level 13:

Deep Sleep:

New functionality: Increase the duration of the Slow provided by Night Rush by 1 second and Mal'ganis Movement Speed dring NightRush by 10%.

The Night Beckons:

New functionality: Enemies hit by Night Rush have their vision greatly reduced for 2 seconds. The cooldown of Night Rush is increased by 3 seconds.

Level 20:

Wrath of Nathreza:

New Functionality: Dark Conversion now deals damage to all nearby enemies equal to 40% of the amount of Mal'ganis healing.

Alone in the Dark:

New functionality: Night Rush now Silences enemies for 3 seconds. The baseline damage reduction of 50% lingers for 3 seconds after the Silence ends.

Read:  We need an AMA from the remaining Devs so we can evaluate the future of HotS.

My personal comments:

Mal'ganis' is in a bit of a weird spot, having two completely busted abilities that have no place in the game (seriously, Deckard's ultimate for a basic ability and the life swap is some broken nonsense if players are unorganized (ie; low ranks) and worthless if they aren't (ie; high ranks).

It is no rocket science to know that this requires Mal'ganis to have subpar numbers, putting him in an awkward spot.

So I changed these two abilities, hopefully setting up to be in a better place in the future.

Muradin:

Basic Attack damage reduced from 88 to 84.

Thunder Clap:

Damage reduced from 96 to 91.

Talents:

Level 4:

Sledgehammer:

Additional functionality: Reduces the cooldown of Storm Bolt by 2 seconds.

Level 7:

Heavy Impact:

Additional functionality: Muradin becomes Unstoppable when using Dwarf Toss.

Skullcracker:

Damage bonus increased from 70% to 95%.

Level 13:

Thunder Strike:

Damage increased from 300% to 350%.

My personal comments:

Muradin has very little talent variety at times, especially at level 7.

Stitches:

Basic Attack damage reduced from 85 to 81.

Devour (E):

Damage reduced from 114 to 103.

Talents:

Level 1:

Chop Chop: Moved from level 4.

Level 4:

Patchwork Creation: Moved from level 1.

Healing received and regeneration bonus percentage increased from 15% to 30%.

Level 13:

New Talent: Indigestion

When using a Devour, smmon a Retchling that lasts for 25 seconds. It has 593 (+4% per level) health, its Basic Attacks deal 48 damage (+4% per level) and apply Vile Gas to the target.

My personal comments:

Three survivability talents on level 1, three damage talents on level 4? On a tank? Let's fix that right now. As for the Retchling, it wasn't broken and I wonder what the point of taking away that option was. I know some players liked it, and if you don't like it… well, don't pick it, I guess?

Tyrael:

Basic Attack damage reduced from 78 to 74.

Archangel's Wrath, Ardent Restoration (D)

Damage dealt by Archangel's Wrath is reduced from 550 to 475.

Dealing damage to a Hero heals Tyrael for 15 (+4% per level) over 5 seconds. Dealing damage resets this timer, and the heal amount stacks up to 10 times.

Sanctification (R):

Additional functionality: Passive: Increase the health regeneration of Ardent Restoration by 25%.

Judgement (R):

Mana cost reduced from 80 to 65.

Additional functionality; Passive: Increase the damage from Archangel's Wrath by 50%.

Talents:

Level 1:

Ardent Restoration: Removed.

New Talent: Divine Restoration (E/D)

Smite heals Tyrael for 4 health (+4% per level) per enemy Hero hit, multiplied by the number of stacks of Ardent Restoration.

Level 4:

Divine Vigor:

Additional functionality: Also reduce the Mana cost of Smite by 15.

Level 7:

Reciprocate:

Additional functionality: Now also grants Tyrael 20 mana when the shield from Righteousness is destroyed or expires.

My personal comments:

Making Ardent Restoration baseline should give Tyrael an actual trait if he doesn't die.

Also, mana cost reductions if you pick certain talents, since Tyrael is pretty mana hungry.

Xul:

Reclassified as a Tank.

Health increased from 2,000 to 2,600.

Health Regeneration increased from 4.012 to 5.414

Basic attack damage reduced from 110 to 88.

Spectral Scythe (Q):

Damage reduced from 240 to 156.

Additional functionality: If Spectral Scythe hits an enemy Rooted by Bone Prison, 2 Skeleton Warriors will spawn that fixate on the enemy for 15 seconds. These Skeleton Warriors do not count to your Raise Skeleton maximum.

Bone Prison (E):

Damage reduced from 80 to 64.

Talents:

Level 7:

Trag'Oul's Essence:

Additional functionality: Increase the health and duration of Skeleton Warriors by 33.3%.

Level 13:

Echoes of Death:

Damage dealt by secondary scythes increased from 60% to 80%.

My personal comments:

Xul kinda sucks. Now I have made him a tank, he should have a more clear-cut role around his point-and-click crowd control in Bone Prison while still having a lot of waveclear.

BRUISER:

Imperius:

Talents:

Level 1:

Burn The Impure:

Bonus damage percentage reduced from 2.5% to 2%.

My personal comments:

A simple nerf to Imperius' most powerful level 1 talent.

Ragnaros:

Empower Sulfuras (Q):

Empower Sulfuras can no longer miss its target.

Blast Wave (E):

Damaged enemies are now Slowed by 40%, decaying over 2 seconds.

Catching Fire (1):

Quest: Gathering a Regeneration Globe gives a stack of Catching Fire. Every stack of Catching fire increases your Health Regeneration by 0.75 per second.

Reward: After gathering 15 stacks of Catching Fire, you can activate Catching Fire to gain 25 Armor for 3 seconds, reducing damage taken by 25%.

Talents:

Level 1:

Sulfuras Hungers:

Adjusted functionality:

Quest: Killing Minions or Heroes within 1.5 second after hitting them with Empower Sulfuras to increase the damage by 2 (+4%/level), up to 60. Reward: After killing 30 Minions, increase its damage by an additional 60 (+4%/level).

Engulfing Flame:

Adjusted funtionality:

Blast Wave's damage is increased by 75% and the Slow no longer decays.

Level 4:

Catching Fire: Removed

Slow Burn: Removed

Fire Ward:

New functionality: If an ally on which channeling Blast Wave is Stunned or Rooted, that ally immidiately heals for 310 damage (+4% per level). This heal can only trigger once per Blast Wave.

New Talent: Ashes to Ashes (E)

Blast Wave and Explosive Rune have their radius increased by 20%.

New Talent: Scorching Heat (1)

Hitting 3 or more enemy Heroes with one of Ragnaros' abilities now provides 1 stack of Catching Fire (including Heroics or Molten Core abilities). Catching Fire also heals Ragnaros for 5% of his maximum health every second of its duration.

Level 13:

Cauterized Wounds (Q/1):

Adjusted functionality:

Catching Fire has its duration increased by 1 second. Empower Sulfuras' healing is increased by 100% if used when Catching Fire is active.

Increase Ragnaros' maximum health by 5%.

Blast Shield:

Adjusted functionality: Blast Wave now immidiately grants a shield of 200 points (+4% per level) to its initial target.

Resilient Flame:

Additional functionality: If Resilient Flame triggers while Catching Fire is active, increase the armor it provides to 65.

My personal comments:

The Fire Lord requested our aid to return to the meta.

Varian:

Lion's Fang (Q):

Healing is now 25% of the damage dealt against non-Heroes and 100% of the damage dealt against Heroes.

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Talents:

Level 1:

Lion's Maw

Additional functionality: Now also reduces the Mana cost of Lion's Fang by 15.

Level 7:

Lionheart:

New functionality. Enemies hit by Lion's Fang now have their Attack Speed reduced by 30% for 3 seconds. Increase the healing of Lion's Fang against non-Heroes from 25% to 35% and against Heroes from 100% to 150%.

My personal comments:

Lion's Fang talents kinda suck. Time for a buff.

MELEE ASSASSIN:

Maiev:

Vault of the Wardens (D):

Maiev is now granted 30 Armor for 0.75 seconds instead of Invulnerable.

My personal comments:

Maiev needs more changes in the future – her kit contains so much bullshit – but this should help.

Valeera:

Talents

Level 1:

Vigor:

Additional functionality: The quest now grants Valeera 15 maximum health per Regeneration Globe gathered, up to 300.

Level 4:

Hemorrhage: Removed

Initiative: Removed

New Talent:

Fatal Finesse: Moved from level 7

New functionality: Valeera heals herself now for 10% of the damage dealt with Blade Flurry (including the percentual bonus damage after quest completion).

Quest: Hitting enemy Heroes with Blade Flurry increases the damage of Blade Flurry by 3%, up to 60%.

Reward: After hitting 20 enemy Heroes with Blade Flurry, Blade Flurry deals bonus damage equal to enemy Heroes equal to 2% of their maximum health.

Level 7:

Mutilate:

Damage reduced from 125% to 100%

Slice and Dice:

Adjusted functionality: Valeera gains 50% Attack Speed for every Combo Point spent with Eviscerate for up to 3 Basic Attacks or up to 3 seconds.

Crimson Vial:

Activate to heal a target friendly Hero for 220 health (+4% per level) over 4 seconds. Throughout this time, they gain 25 Spell Armor. Cooldown: 40 seconds.

Level 13:

Blind: Removed

Crippling Poison: Moved from level 1

Thistle Tea: Moved from level 16

New functionality: Activate to heal Valeera for 20% of her maximum health and to grant 20 Energy over 5 seconds. Cooldown: 50 seconds.

Level 16:

Seal Fate: Removed

New Talent:

Prey on the Weak (Q2/W2/E2):

Valeera's Basic Attacks deal 30% more damage against enemies affected by an opener.

New Talent:

Poison Master:

Basic Attacks refresh the duration of any of Valeera's poisons that are still in effect on the targeted enemy Hero.

Level 20:

Rupture: Removed

My personal comments:

A character that I love, but she does have a rather disgusting QM build for those that are mechanically competent enough. Therefore, I decided to tear that build apart and give her a few new options that are less focused around her CC-and-burst.

Zeratul:

Basic attack damage reduced from 126 to 119.

Void Prison (R)

Cooldown increased from 80 to 150 seconds.

Talents:

Level 4:

Rending Cleave:

Damage reduced from 40% to 30%.

Level 16:

Master Warp-Blade:

Damage bonus reduced from 125% to 100%.

Void Slash:

Damage bonus reduced from 40% to 25%.

Sentenced to Death:

Damage bonus reduced from 30% to 20%.

Level 20:

Shadow Mending:

Healing reduced from 60% to 45%.

My personal comments:

Zeratul is still busted in the hands of someone who can pair the two things of knowing what they are doing with mechanical skill. Here, have some of this.

RANGED ASSASSIN:

Cassia:

Talents:

Level 1:

Seraph's Hymn:

Changed functionality: Basic Attacks against Blinded Enemies deal 100% more damage.

Quest: Absorb Basic Attacks with Avoidance.

Reward: After absorbing 20 attacks, Blinding Light's cooldown is reduced by 5 seconds.

Reward: After absorbing 50 attacks, Cassia regenerates 1% of her maximum health per second when Avoidance is active.

Quest: Hit Blinded enemies with Basic Attacks.

Reward: After hitting 20 enemies, Blinding Light's Mana Cost is reduced by 25.

Reward: After hitting 50 enemies, Cassia's maximum health is increased by 10%.

Level 4:

Plate of the Whale: Removed.

Impale: Moved from Level 7.

Damage bonus reduced from 50% to 40%

Additional functionality: When Cassia uses Fend, Avoidance remains active.

Level 7:

War Traveler:

New functionality: Cassia gains 4% Movement Speed every 0.5 seconds while Avoidance is active, up to 20%. This bonus is reset when Cassia stops moving or uses an Ability. Activate Avoidance to double this bonus for 6 seconds. Cooldown: 30 seconds

Passive: When using Fend, Cassia gains 30 Spell Armor.

New Talent: Unbreakable Will

Activate Avoidance to enhance it, becoming Unstoppable for up to 2 seconds or until Avoidance deactivates. Cooldown: 45 seconds.

My personal comments:

Replacing some bad talents. Yes, Unbreakable Will does synergize with the new Impale.

Fend is still a bad ability due to the selfroot, but I would like to try this first before changing that ability completely.

Genji:

Deflect (W):

Deflect now only blocks Physical damage (Parry instead of Protected).

Talents:

Level 20:

Zanshin (W):

New functionality: Deflect now grants Protected.

My personal comments:

A placeholder change to keep him in check for the time being, buying some time to think about how to rework him.

Hanzo:

Storm Bow (Q):

Mana Cost increased from 20 to 30.

Damage reduced from 291 to 262.

Scatter Arrow (W):

Mana Cost increased from 50 to 60.

Talents:

Level 4:

Explosive Arrows:

Additional 'functionality': Now increases the mana cost of Storm Bow by 20.

Level 16:

Piercing Arrows:

Adjusted functionality: Arrows that have already pierced an enemy deal 50% less damage.

My personal comments:

He can have actual mana cost and even then I would nerf his Q.

Yes, I am well aware his winrate is poor, but like I said at the start, I personally would never aim a balance patch at scrubs that can't land their skillshots.

Jaina:

Talents:

Level 1:

Stormfront: Moved from level 13

Adjusted functionality: Increase the range of Frostbolt by 25%, and the cast range of Blizzard by 75%.

Level 7:

Ice Lance:

Cooldown reduction from hitting Chilled Targets with Frostbolt reduced from 2 seconds to 1 second and the mana refund is reduced from 25 to 15.

Level 13:

Winter's Reach: Moved from level 1

New functionality: Increase Jaina's Basic Attack range by 2.2. Basic Attacks now Chill enemies.

Icy Veins:

Cooldown increased from 60 to 75 seconds.

Level 16:

Snowstorm:

Additional functionality: Blizzard will now strike a fourth time.

My personal comments:

She could use some changes to her talent tree, but every buff has to be countered with a nerf here since Jaina is very strong as she is.

Read:  Thought piece: This game may very well be able to grow and flourish with its new identity in a post-HGC era. Here's how:

Mephisto:

Consume Souls (R)

Adjusted functionality:

Channel for 2.5 seconds, revealing all enemy Heroes for the first 2 seconds of this channel. After the Channel completes, all enemy Heroes that are still visible take 357 damage and are Slowed by 25% for 2.5 seconds.

My personal Comment:

Counterplay for Consume Souls: it no longer deals damage to enemies that manage to hide.

Orphea:

Health increased from 1525 to 1662

Health Regeneration increased from 3.18 to 3.46

Shadow Waltz (Q):

Changed functionality:

After 0.5 seconds, deal 157 (was 165) damage to enemies in a line. Reactivate within 2 seconds to dash a short distance. Hitting a Hero with Shadow Waltz refunds 40 Mana.

Dread (E):

Damage from Dread's explosion reduced from 175 to 158, and Damage from Dread's wave reduced from 85 to 77.

Talents:

Level 1:

En Pointe:

Damage increased from 75% to 100%.

Growing Nightmare:

Additional functionality: The width of Dread's wave and the radius of Dread's explosion are also increased by 10%.

Ancestral Strength:

Damage bonus reduced from 20% to 15%.

New Talent: Friendly Shadows

Quest: Gathering a Regeneration Globe increases your maximum Health by 10 (+4% per level).

Reward: After gathering 12 Regeneration Globes, Orphea heals nearby allies (within 2.25 range) for 25% of the amount she heals herself with.

Level 4:

Allegrissimo:

Adjusted functionality: Hitting at least one enemy Hero with the end of Shadow Waltz reduces the cooldown of Shadow Waltz by 2 seconds.

Level 7:

Mind Devourer:

Damage per stack reduced from 4 to 3. Number of stacks required for quest completion increased from 40 to 50.

Level 13:

Determination:

New functionality: Activate to grant Orphea 75 Spell Armor for 3 seconds. Hitting enemy Heroes with Shadow Waltz reduces the cooldown by 7 seconds. Cooldown: 60 seconds.

Abyssal Symbiosis:

Adjusted functionality: Chomp now provides 2 Chaos for every enemy Hero hit. If this overflows the maximum, Orphea heals for 2% of her maximum health per stack of Chaos that overflows.

Level 16:

Lurking Terror:

Additional 'functionality': If Chomp is cast from Dread's eruption area, its mana cost is increased by 20.

Level 20:

New Talent: Exotic Waltz

Increase Orphea's Basic Attack range by 1. Hitting enemies with Basic Attacks heals Orphea for 1% of her maximum health, plus an additional 0.5% for each expended stack of Chaos.

My personal comments:

Orphea's kit is quite bloated – she just has too much of everything. Mobility, self-sustain, poke, burst, crowd control… There are various ways to solve this, and my personal choice was to take away her most important source of sustain damage by adjusting the functionality of her Q (and its associated talents).

Sylvanas:

Black Arrows (D):

No longer works against Structures.

Talents:

Level 1:

Unfurling Shadows:

Percentage reduced from 0.5% to 0.4%.

My personal comments:

Why was Sylvanas reworked if this aspect of her trait was not removed?

Also, Unfurling Shadows nerf.

Valla:

Health increased from 1273 to 1312

Health regeneration increased from 2.6523 to 2.732

Hungering Arrow (Q):

Mana Cost reduced from 60 to 50

Gloom (1):

Activate to consume all Hatred, granting 3 Spell Armor per Hatred consumed for 5 seconds. Cooldown: 8 seconds.

Talents:

Level 1:

Monster Hunter:

Mana cost reduction reduced from 40 to 30.

Level 13:

Gloom: Removed

New Talent: Last Memories

Gloom now grants Valla a shield of 440 health (+4% per level) that lasts for 5 seconds.

Passive: Valla now permanently has 20 Spell Armor. This stacks with Gloom.

My personal comments:

Some minor buffs for an outdated character. A small HP buff, a baseline spell shield that can be activated in a pinch and her Hungering Arrow costs less mana in non-Q builds, creating more wiggle room for other Valla builds.

Zagara:

Basic Attack damage increased from 76 to 79.

Creep Tumour, Serrated Spines (D)

Additional functionality: Quest: Each Basic Attack against a Hero increases Zagara's Attack Damage by 0.25.

Devouring Maw (R):

Damage scaling increased from 3% to 4%.

Mana cost reduced from 100 to 75.

Talents:

Level 1:

Corpse Feeders:

Additional functionality: Reduce the mana cost of Baneling Drop by 20.

New Talent: Evolving Brood

Zagara's Summons take 50% less damage from non-Heroes. Infested Drop will spawn a third Roachling.

Level 4:

Serrated Spines: Removed

Viscous Acid: Moved from level 7

Corrosive Saliva: Moved from level 16

Bonus damage reduced from 2.5% to 1.25%.

Level 7:

Infest: Moved from level 1

Bile Drop:

Adjusted functionality: Increase the Impact Radius of Infested Drop by 20%. Quest: Each Hero hit by the impact damage of Infested Drop increases the damage dealt by 5%.

Level 16:

Mutalisk:

Clarification: The bounce does not benefit from Zagara's talents.

Envenomed Spines: Moved from level 4

New functionality: Zagara's Basic Attacks deal bonus damage to enemy Heroes equal to 1.5% of their maximum health. Serrated Spines's bonus is increased by 100% (from 0.25 per stack to 0.5 per stack).

Level 20:

Fury of the Storm: Removed

New Talent: Fury of the Swarm:

Activate to empower your next Basic Attack, which deals 1 additional damage per stack of Serrated Spines. Cooldown: 20 seconds.

Passive: Hunter Killers, Mutalisks and Roachlings now benefit from Serrated Spines. Hunter Killers and Mutalisks gain 0.33 Attack damage per stack, Roachlings 0.2.

My personal comments:

I would like Zagara to be a little more powerful but less frustrating to lane against, at least in the early game. As such, I removed Infest from her level 1 talent tier and giving her some incentive to teamfight instead.

HEALER:

Ana:

Biotic Grenade (W):

Enemy healing reduction reduced from 100% to 50%.

Sleep Dart (E):

Cooldown increased from 14 to 16 seconds.

My personal comments:

Some nerfs for the strongest healer in the game.

Auriel:

Resurrect (R)

Removed.

Angelic Flight (R):

After 0.5 seconds, become Unstoppable and fly to a target location. Cooldown: 60 seconds

Passive: Reduce the cooldown of Ray of Heaven by 2 seconds.

Encouraging Blessing (1):

Target allied Hero gains Unstoppable for 1 second. For every status effect that is removed or prevented, Auriel gains 25 Hope. Cannot be used on Auriel.

Cooldown: 120 seconds.

Talents:

Level 1:

Increasing Clarity:

Damage bonus per hit increased from 2 to 4.

Enemy Heroes hit required for quest completion reduced from 25 to 15.

Level 4:

Heavy Burden:

Additional functionality: Stunning an enemy Hero with Detainment Strike grants Auriel 10% of her maximum Hope.

Level 7:

Glimmer of Hope:

Additional functionality: Gathering a Regeneration Globe also reduces the cooldown of Encouraging Blessing by 10 seconds.

Level 13:

Converging Force

Additional functionality: Sacred Sweep deals bonus damage to enemy Heroes equal to 5% of their maximum Health to if they are caught in the center.

Level 20:

Angelic Flight: Removed.

Light Speed:

New functionality: Reduce the cooldown of Angelic Flight by 30 seconds. After her Flight ends, she gains 50% Speed and 50 Armor that both decay over 4 seconds.

New Talent: Resurrect:

Activate to channel on the spirit of a dead ally for 0.5 seconds. After a 3 second delay, they are brought back to life near Auriel.

Cooldown: 60 seconds

My personal comments:

Bad talents are bad.

Li Li:

Basic Attack increased from 60 to 94.

Attack Speed reduced from 1.25 attacks per second to 0.95 attacks per second.

Fast Feet (D):

Additional functionality: Quest: Gather Regeneration Globes to increase the healing provided by Let's Go by 2.

Reward: After gathering 25 Regeneration Globes, increase the Slow percentage of Blinding Wind by 10%.

Reward: After gathering 50 Regeneration Globes, gain 8 Armor per second while Fast Feet is active, to a maximum of 30 armor.

Healing Brew (Q):

Healing has been reduced from 175 to 120. Range is reduced from 6 to 5.

Healing Brew heals an additional 42 health over 3 seconds if it hits a target that is bearing a Cloud Serpent.

Blinding Wind (E):

Blinding Wind now Slows damaged enemies by 20% for its duration.

Water Dragon (R):

Damage increased from 300 to 330.

Additional functionality: If Water Dragon does not connect with the ground, refund 30 mana and reduce the cooldown by 40 seconds.

Let's Go (1):

Heal target ally for 140 (+4% per level) and make them Unstoppable for 1 second. Let's Go's cooldown is affected by Fast Feet.

Cooldown: 80 seconds.

Cannot be used on Li Li.

Talents:

Level 1:

New Talent: Pro Toss:

Li Li can now manually target Healing Brew. Healing Brew's maximum range is increased by 40%.

Manual targeting can be toggled on and off.

Wind Serpent:

Additional Functionality: Cloud Serpent cooldown is reduced by 2 seconds.

Eager Adventurer:

Additional functionality: Li Li's Basic Attacks deal bonus damage to enemy Heroes equal to 1.25% of their maximum health while Fast Feet is active.

Level 4:

Hindering Wind: Removed

Free Drinks:

Moved from level 1.

Serpent Sidekick:

Additional functionality: If Healing Brew heals an ally bearing a Cloud Serpent, they regenerates 3% of their maximum mana pool over 3 seconds.

Level 7:

Let's Go: Removed

The Good Stuff:

New functionality: Increase the bonus healing provided when Healing Brew heals a bearer of Cloud Serpent from 42 to 96 over 3 seconds. This healing is now increased by 100% if Li Li is affected by Fast Feet.

New Talent: Gotta Go Faster:

Reduce the cooldown of Let's Go by 40 seconds. Let's Go increases the target's Movement by 20% for 3 seconds.

Level 13:

Gale Force: Removed

New Talent: Kung Fu Hustle

Li Li's Basic Attacks deal 90% more damage against Blinded enemies, and her Basic Attack range is increased by 1.

When Fast Feet is active, Basic Abilities and Let's Go refresh an additional 50% faster.

Level 16:

Two For One:

Additional functionality: Increase the cast range of Let's Go by 50%.

Pick Me Up:

Percentage increased from 33% to 50%.

Additional functionality: Let's Go now grants 25 Armor for 3 seconds.

Blessings of Yu'lon:

Cloud Serpent attacks healing reduced from 1% to 0.75%.

Additional functionality: Cloud Serpent attacks now deal bonus damage to enemy Heroes equal to 0.75% of their maximum health.

Additional functionality: If Let's Go heals an ally bearing a Cloud Serpent, they are granted 50 Spell Armor for 2 seconds and healed for an additional 5% of their maximum health.

Level 20:

Shake it Off:

New functionality: Activate to grant Li Li Unstoppable and 60 Spell Armor for 2 seconds. Cooldown: 50 seconds.

My personal comments:

Li Li is always in a bit of a weird place, simply because she is too easy. As such, I think she needs a bit of an overhaul, mostly centered around increasing her skill floor and ceiling, while simultaneously aiming to address the various issues that her talent tree has.

I ended up giving her a lot more tools, with ways to empower them, but they do have to bite into her power budget somewhere, and Li Li has to pay the piper if it comes to her healing output.

Lt. Morales:

Adrenaline Injection (1):

Target Ally gains Unstoppable for 1 second. Cannot be used on Lt. Morales.

Maximum of 2 charges. Charge cooldown: 10 seconds.

Cooldown: 60 seconds of Healing Beam

My personal comments:

Baseline Cleanse on another underused support.

And this is it!

What do you think about the state of game balance? What do you think about the changes I would make?

What changes would you make yourself? And even more importantly, why?

Source: Original link


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