Blizzard: There will be more nerfs
Every nerf of a popular choice brings controversies. So did the decision of Blizzard Entertainment to alter one of the most powerful decks of the widely popular game Hearthstone. Although it was not the first time the company decided to intervene, the autumn patch brought the largest dispute of the last period among the users.
Since the game released a physically collectible version, people might have thought a nerf of this caliber would be done very rarely, if at all. However, Jason Chayes, production director at Blizzard Entertainment disagrees. “I’m very confident there will be more nerfs in Hearthstone’s future.”
The online version of the game is a constantly changing medium, as players figure out different mixes of cards and even exploits to beat the latest trends. Moreover, situations as the one witnessed before the autumn nerf might rise, meaning that a combination becomes non-counterable or just unfairly devastating.
We are of course talking about the pack known as Grim Patron Warrior. The ominous deck included the Grim Patron, known for its ability to replicate itself if it survived damage, combined with the Warsong Commander, card that grants Charge-- ability to hit during the turn it was laid out. This combo was so powerful that it could easily destroy the enemy summons in one turn. Due to these circumstances, Blizzard got to the conclusion to nerf the Warsong Commander.
According to Chayes, new cards go through a phase of extensive internal testing before being released. Nonetheless, having such a numerous player base, explains Jason: “the community has a lot more experience and lot more people trying things than we do and discovers new things that we’d never even thought of.”
He himself admits that any kind of nerfing influences the users and some might dislike the changes, this is why before any action, the developers deeply analyze every situation and act only when necessary, having as little impact as possible. “We don’t want to nerf cards any more than we absolutely have to” added the production director.
When asked about the particular case of the Grim Patron, Chayes elaborated: “The biggest problem with Grim Patron, which ultimately led to the change [for Warsong Commander] is that we received a lot of feedback from players – which we agreed with – that it wasn’t very fun to play against and, specifically, to lose against,” pointing out that indeed the community itself raised the problem to the developers. Not acting would have meant that the game itself entered into a state of degenerations with a stagnating meta game, which could have led to a decrease in player numbers.
“Ultimately our main goal is thinking about what’s right for the game,” he says. “While feedback is very important, we have to ensure that Hearthstone can be a game ten years from now. We have to move towards a place where the game is in a healthy state for many years to come” sums up Jason.
Whatever happens in the future, Blizzard Entertainment will always consider the long-term future of the game. New cards will be introduced in future expansions, meaning that fresh pairings will emerge, some of which could well become the next Grim Patron and Warson Commander combination.
Source: The Guardian