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redditBalance changes and how they will affect the game

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Mother Witch - damage from 96 to 110, hit speed from 1.2 to 1.1 seconds, first hit from 0.5 to 0.4 seconds

This is an indirect nerf to Spear Goblins, one of the best cards, as she can now one-shot them. This will also bring a Fireball bait meta, along with the 3M buff and lack of Royal Hogs and Skeleton Dragons nerf. This is also an indirect nerf to the already struggling Minion Horde, Skeleton Army, and Witch, and to the fairly strong Graveyard.

Three Musketeers - deployment time from 2 sec to 1 sec

This buff will bring about a Fireball meta, undoubtedly. Battle Ram is already fairly strong, so are the Skeleton Dragons, Barbarians, Flying Machine, and Royal Hogs. Fireball being meta will be an indirect buff to Graveyard, as they wouldn't be using Poison, which is known as one of the hardcounters of the said spell win-con.

Also, 3M deployed in the pocket is guaranteed to deal damage to the princess tower.

Witch - range from 5 to 5.5 tiles

This is an overall buff. She'll be able to spawn more skeletons because she "pauses" more often (if that makes sense). However, the skeletons she spawns will also be farther from the enemy, that if you actually deploy her from the bridge, the newer Witch will deal less damage (including the skeleton's damage) because the skeletons will have to travel farther now. She'll still remain fairly weak, but hopefully her win rates should increase a bit.

Elite Barbarians - hit speed from 1.5 sec to 1.4 sec, first hit from 0.5 to 0.4 sec

The Elite Barbarians is currently one of the bad cards in the game. This change might just turn them into one of the best cards. Even if they don't, this buff will surely make more players adopt them in their decks. Nothing much to say here, other than they'll probably deal more DPS than a PEKKA now.

Bomber - elixir cost from 3 to 2, hitpoints from 398 to 275, damage from 271 to 184

Bomber will now die to Arrows, and will probably shift from primarily being used in Beatdown decks to being used in Control decks. This rework is also an indirect nerf to Spear Goblins, because it's cheaper and thus can be deployed easier. It's also an indirect nerf to Wallbreakers, as it will still two-shot it for positive elixir trade.

Heal Spirit - damage from 28 to 91, heal radius from 3.5 to 2.5

This change will now allow it to kill skeletons and bats, and kill Minions and Minion Horde with a Zap, another indirect nerf to Minion Horde. Also, the radius nerf means that its heal will now mostly affect melee troops, an indirect buff to cards like Hog Rider and Giant when you factor in the ability to kill Skeletons and Minion Horde. Overall, I believe this is a buff as the 3.5 radius rarely reaches glass cannons in the first place, anyway.

Cannon Cart - movement speed from fast to medium

This card will no longer connect to the princess tower if it gets immobilized in one-shot, similar to the Wizard or Electro Wizard. My initial wish is that they'd just reduce its lifetime as a stationary cannon. However, this nerf might be bigger than it first seems, as its ability to deal massive damage during its second phase is now nerfed because, again, it will not connect if it gets immobilized in one princess tower shot. It used to be, that you can never ignore it and you always have to put a card, like Skeletons or Knight, even if it only takes one hit from the princess tower to immobilize it, but now, you don't need to do that.

However, in defense, the card might just have been buffed, because its slower movement will allow you to bank more elixir for a counterpush. I think, this change will overall reduce its win rate, but it shouldn't be enough to actually reduce it below 50%.

Hunter - first hit from 0.7 sec to 1.1 sec

This might be an indirect buff to the struggling log bait, because the goblins will now get one stab before dying to the Hunter (I could also be completely wrong about this). Otherwise, this change will rarely affect anything, as Hunter will still be an effective tank killer at close range. More likely, this nerf will primarily affect his interactions with swarm troops, but not his tank-killing capabilities.

Zappies - first hit from 0.9 to 1.1 sec

Zappies is currently one of the best cards in the game. This nerf will affect its interactions with swarms, but it will still be good at defending against cards like Royal Giant or Hog Rider. It's also worth noting that this card is a Fireball bait, but the nerf of this one card will not be sufficient in preventing a Fireball meta due to other cards getting buffed or staying strong, like 3M or Royal Hogs, respectively.

Knight - hitpoints from 1452 to 1380

No, this buff isn't going to increase Valkyrie's win rate, at least not to a degree that can be felt. He will still remain fairly strong, and even if he's nerfed to the ground, there simply are other cards that can take his role, not just Valkyrie. In a sense, his usage rate would "spread out", with only a fraction going to Valk.

He'll still survive two shots from PEKKA, but he now dies to Rocket + Zap (or Snowball, they have the same damage). Obviously, he dies a little bit faster, but when left ignored, he'll still deal the same damage to a princess tower.

Giant Skeleton - damage from 172 to 222, death damage from 957 to 444

He'l kill Wizard, Electro Wizard, Ice Wizard, Barbarians, and Musketeer in three shots instead of four. This is a buff. However, his death bomb will now only kill tier-0 Fireballies (Tier-0 Fireballies survive if they're one level higher), and because they didn't nerfed the Flying Machine's health to be similar to MA or Zappies, the Flying Machine will actually now survive the Giant Skeleton's bomb! Witch, Barbarians, Musketeer, etc. will also survive the bomb.

Balloon - death damage from 272 to 199

This is a buff to Archers and Firecrackers, as even if you misplace them that they walk through the bomb, they'll still survive and can be used for counter-attack. It's supposed to be a buff to Princess, Dart Goblins, and Rascal Girls, but these three will die to a Balloon that is one-level higher, and given that Balloon is epic and the epic trade token is the easiest to get, it will probably only indirectly buff the Rascal Girls, less so Princess and Dart Goblins.

Lavaloon will still be effective, and possibly not even budge. Balloon cycle is a different story, because the Balloon gets played more often and relies on the death damage for that extra chip damage.

Bomb Tower - death damage from 369 to 184

Now this is an indirect buff to Minion Horde, as it will now survive the death bomb (it will still die to a Bomb Tower that is one level higher, however, being common, the Minion Horde will always have the edge when it comes to levelling).

Other than that, this change rarely affects anything, except that it's probably an indirect nerf to Tornado as it synergizes well with the bomb, and an indirect buff to Royal Hogs (which is already strong!) because Bomb Tower is the only building that can counter it fairly well.

Also, the death damage isn't even that great to begin with. this change will only make it so that Bomb Tower will almost certainly be played in the center rather than at the bridge to explode in the face of a Wizard.

Author's note

I am kind of underwhelmed by the balance changes here. I expected more cards to be changed to compensate for the quarterly balance updates. The balance team left cards like Barbarian Barrel, Lavahound, and Elector Spirit to remain strong or even to get indirectly buffed due to the nerf of its counters. Weak cards that could have used easy buffs like a simple first hit decrease for Cannon or increased skeleton count for Skeleton Army were not implemented. Overall, the changes in this balance update might have been good, but as the old saying goes: "You miss 100% of the shots you don't take", Supercell missed a lot of necessary buffs and nerfs to the cards they refused to touch.

submitted by /u/doomshroompatent
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