Balance Changes (August 16th) - Designer Commentary

##It’s Balancing Time
Hey everyone. We’ve spent the last months paying close attention to every tournament result and exploring new options for the game’s balance. After a deep and dedicated amount of testing, courtesy of our extraordinary vanguards, we’re finally ready to unleash the results. Let’s get started.

(Full patch notes can be found here)

##Faeria Tree
Now takes 1 less turn to go off.

Faeria tree is an enjoyable investment. You pay 2 faeria up front, hoping to cash in on 10 faeria a few turns down the road. Previously the faeria tree took 5 turns to go off. This made the card basically indefensible. We like the tension this card creates, attempting to defend it for a short time frame while your opponent tries to keep it going off, but 5 turns proved slightly too long. Now the tree takes only 4 turns to repay your investment.

##Ruunin’s Champion
Changes to the following design:

Ruunin’s Messenger - 5 faeria, 1 forest
When this creature attacks a god, add a random green creature to your hand. It costs 2 faeria less.

Green gets its first jump card. We believe that Green needs a wider variety of options available to it. Mobility might just be the beginning. Green’s lack of mobility has held it back significantly over the years of Faeria’s development. We’ve often considered diving into the jungle and embracing the agile predators as well as the lumbering behemoths. It’s time to take the leap.

Green has been underrepresented in the last few patches. It’s been rare to see the color played outside of an Apex Predator or Three Wishes deck. We hope that Ruunin’s Messenger will deliver the color many new victories.

#Ancient Herald
+1 life

Ancient Herald was mostly ignored in high tier play. A 6 cost 5/5 is terrible. The discount on your next 5+ life card could also be delayed for several turns, then required you to play that discounted card to take advantage of the discount. In the meanwhile you were suffering the tempo loss of having played an overcosted 5/5.

Adding 1 life to the herald makes it slightly more efficient in the short term and allows the herald to match up better against many of the 5 attack threats in the metagame.

##Sunken Tower
Costs 1 less faeria.

Yes, Sunken Tower now costs 0 faeria. Land movement is one of the more unique elements of blue. It’s also something unique to faeria. Messing with the board is a lot of fun and we want to see these effects show up more often in the metagame.

##Prophet of Tides
+2 attack, but only moves friendly lands.

Prophet of Tides is now a much more threatening body. In exchange, it can only move friendly lands. This restriction still enables many of blue’s creatures (such as Luduan, Wavecrash Colossus and the new Mystic Beast). The Prophet can also surf across the board on turn 2 to threaten your opponent himself.

The restriction of only moving friendly lands is important, as otherwise blue could easily have a huge number of high power ways to move your enemy’s lands. This would make it impossible to build their board strategically. Currently it’s not a huge problem as the 1/1 Prophet wasn’t played much. As a 3/1 this problem would have been significant. We’re glad to solve that problem before it happens. This change also creates more variety between the Prophet and blue’s other land movement options.

##Mystic Beast
Changes to the following design:

Mystic Beast - 3 faeria, 3 lakes
Gift -Gets +2/+0 and Jump if summoned adjacent to an enemy well.

Mystic Beast was originally created to help counter decks that were going over 10 faeria regularly on their turn. The new metagame has successfully encouraged players to actually play their cards. The old beast was no longer serving a purpose.

The new Mystic Beast wants to be summoned deep in enemy territory, but it also costs 3 lakes. Axe Grinder is a similar card, but its 1 mountain cost makes it easy to drive it deep into enemy territory by building a lot of neutral lands. 3 lakes is a significant challenge. If only blue had some ways to move their lands across the board…

##Deathwish Ghoul
Now gives only 2 faeria when it dies.

Deathwish Ghoul was clearly too much value for its cost. While the card offers good gameplay, allowing players to deploy mid-sized threats and defenders without sacrificing economy, it’s proven to be too far above the curve.

##Oradrim Sagittarius
+1 Desert, +1 life

Facing down a turn 1 Oradrim Saggitarius could feel like trying to swim up a waterfall. It was also a bit too swingy. If you had removal in your opening hand, great. If you didn’t, you were in trouble. That’s too big an impact for the first turn of the game. Slowing the Sagitarius down 1 turn while also making it more resilient to removal smooths out both ends. This requirement also messes with the yellow rusher’s land build if they want to summon their friend Saggy on turn 2.

##Shaytan Vampire
Changed to the following design:

Shaytan Vampire - 6 faeria, 2 Deserts
Whenever Shaytan Vampire damages a god, you gain that much life.

Shaytan Vampire was hugely oppressive under its previous numbers. Yellow also has a huge number of tools available to it as a color. We want to tone down yellow’s power and available tools in the metagame. Considering how many tools yellow already has available, high value AOE definitely seems unnecessary… We’ve replaced the design with a new kind of vampire. We’ve classically stayed away from huge, repeatable lifegain because it can stall out games forever. However, that’s not a problem when the lifegain requires someone’s face getting pounded in by a giant vampire.

##Wind Gate
Costs 1 less faeria and 1 less desert.

Wind Gate is a unique card. At its previous cost however, it simply wasn’t possible to utilize it effectively. A lower cost makes this unique gameplay a bit more affordable (as well as more accessible to other colors).

##Daring Adventurer
-1 Faeria

We like Daring Adventurer’s theme and gameplay. The card was seeing no play at its previous cost. At its new cost of 4 faeria, Daring Adventurer is as efficient as a Maceman when played adjacent to a single enemy creature. It also has the potential to get much bigger if dropped into a crowd of enemies.

It’s also nice to buff the Daring Adventurer as Shaytan Vampire is being reworked. We really like the gameplay of a creature growing based on how many enemies are adjacent to it.

##Apex Predator
Costs 1 more faeria

This is a very small nerf. It puts a slight tax on the “combo turn” in which an Apex deck wants to play 2 or more predators in a given turn. We experimented with moving the Apex Predator to 8 faeria but it slowed the deck so much that it could no longer compete. The Apex Predator list is an explosive “honesty check” on a metagame that helps prevent ultra-slow-defensive-grindy decks from dominating. We’ve seen those metas before, and we much prefer the explosive power of an Apex Predator.

We’re going to be keeping a very close eye on this card. It’s also possible we’ll be seeing more variety within the Apex lists now that the Predator synergizes with Gabrian Archon and similar designs.

##Soul Eater
Gains Flying and Charge 3.

Decks that played Soul Eater often had a difficult time using their gigantic creature to get across the board and end the game. We like Soul Eater’s design a lot, so we’ve granted the wicked horror the mobility it needs to get work done. Watch the skies.

##Three Wishes
Now costs 2 more faeria, gains 3 life and reduces each copied card’s cost by 3 faeria.

Three Wishes has been a staple of the metagame in many different variations. Few decks have as many different ways to build them. Many people have also called it their favorite card in the game.

However, we wanted to tweak things slightly. With slightly reduced lifegain and an upfront cost, 3 Wishes is no longer pure upside when you play it. We’ve increased the cost reduction as well, but this also means that it hurts more when you copy a cheap card (as you can’t reduce the cost below 0).


Hm, I like most of the changes and I really appreciate writing down the reasoning behind the changes!

The Vampire for sure needed a change in every aspect, but I can’t say that I like the new one. :stuck_out_tongue:

Apex should still look for opponents creatures only.

Daring Aventurer now is a great card, BUT you already mentioned the problem it brings. It’s the clearly better version of Maceman. Please don’t give cards more power, just because they are more rare.

I hoped to see some more changes (boosting a few cards), but well, maybe next time.

Oh and I’m still waiting for green’s version of “Desert Twister”. 5 forest / 0 faeria - gain control of a (adjacent) land.
With the cost of 5 forest, this would only help pure green decks, that still need some help I would say.

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Adventurer is still worse than maceman if you want to place it to gather, which is a pretty common case.

Very excited to see how these changes play out. Looks like a good patch!

EDIT: Just started a Pandora run and the new Ruunin’s Champion (the Epic version) is still showing up with the Common cards. Guessing that’s not intentional?


:smirk: Charge 3 !!.. Let me see…

:grinning: Bravo!

Thank you for your great job! All your decisions seem to be very good, and even if we can desagree, you explained very well your ideas behind these changes.


Please next time when you will change cards make some ingame notification about it. This morning I put my Shaytan Vampire and was all like O_o where is my AOE?!


I have the same request - please add any ingame notification. I had the same situation today. But apart from that, all the changes are great.

Well, I kind of dislike 1 change that has not been made, You have not really nerfed Yellow Rush which is still THE dominant deck on the ladder right now. I hoped that you would at least reduce its power or is insane juice trough prayer/monk card draw and faeria gain. We desperatly need a deck that will typically win 9 out of 10 match against Yrush. Apart from that great changes.

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