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High winrate support buffs & nerfs in 4.10.1


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Hey all,

I'd be curious to hear about what was the main reason to significantly buff a support hero that was really strong in last patch (55+ winrate) while other supports with ~ same winrate got some nerfs (for example Empath, Prophet). If Elementuser could share some winrates with us for these 3 heroes in the higher brackets that would be highly appreciated.

For the record, here are the changes made:

Glacius
- Strength growth per level increased from 1.5 to 1.6.
- Agility growth per level increased from 1.5 to 1.6.
- Base Movement Speed increased from 285 to 290.

Tundra Blast
- Cooldown reduced from 15 seconds to 15/14/13/12 seconds.

Empath
- Base Agility reduced from 20 to 18.

Prophet

Debilitate
- Tapering Movement Speed Slow magnitude reduced from 30% to 20%.

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About the debilitate nerf for Prophet, the tapering slow starts from 25% actually, however the tapering is so quick again that the effective slow was reduced from ~15% normal slow to ~9% normal slow of 4 seconds. Here's a screenshot to prove it (taken from test mode, Aluna has 222 Movement speed instead of 295 which is 25% slow):

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This is almost the same amount of slow it used to be with 30% quick taper slow (8% normal slow of 4 seconds), and like with the first iteration, the slow amount of 8-9% is not enough to justify getting lvl 1 debilitate over lvl 2 persecution on lvl 4, however I do agree that the 15% slow was too much for 1 point. I'm not sure if it's a good idea to push the "1 point wonder" balance design for Debilitate, and it might be more healthy for the hero if Debilitate was a spell more like Persecution, where it scales really well with points, but not as strong for 1 point. If Elementuser wish to stay with this slow system for Q, I think it would be a cleaner approach if Debilitate scaled like this:

rank 1 debuff: 4% increased damage taken and 4% movement speed slow for 4 seconds (normal slow, not tapering)

rank 2 debuff: 8% increased damage taken and 8% movement speed slow for 4 seconds (normal slow, not tapering)

rank 3 debuff: 12% increased damage taken and 12% movement speed slow for 4 seconds (normal slow, not tapering)

rank 4 debuff: 16% increased damage taken and 16% movement speed slow for 4 seconds (normal slow, not tapering)

I don't know if Debilitate would be strong enough this way to challenge the scaling strength of Persecution(getting rank 4 on lvl 7), however with this change you wouldn't get 9% slow (only 4%) for 1 point so that early game power wouldnt be as explosive, but if you took 4 points on Q, you could still get the same slow amount Prophet used to have before the nerf. It would be really nice if Prophet had more viable strategies in the early game, so it wouldn't be maxing stun or heal in every game. Before the Raven Form era of Prophet, his Debilitate used to be 20 mana cheaper (70 instead of 90 on rank 1) which was actually a good way to promote investing more points into Q rather than stun in the early game. I wonder if that could return in the future.

 

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Prophet's win rate was too high all of a sudden, and the slow isn't as needed on Q. I get you like Prophet and all, but seriously he's fine. His win rate skyrocketed up to a constant 55% since the previous patch.

Glacius doesn't have as much late game scaling as those other support heroes. But it's also because I can & he's my favourite hero, and i can technically do whatever I want for the that patch. The buffs aren't even that much, they're more QoL level buffs.

Empath spiked up to 59% right before the patch. That is concerning, but it's likely because she's paired with Magebane a lot who also has a high win rate. Both of these heroes should be addressed properly, so their performances should converge to reasonable values after a week or so.

Edited by ElementUser
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Glacius is currently the highest winrate hero and also the 14th most played one (achieving 57% winrate in 1722 game sample is a tad bit more difficult than doing so when a hero has only 0.5% played with 700 games) , personally I still don't understand why it needed any QoL level buffs, although reducing CD from 15 to 12 is almost a 25% reduction in CD and that is something I would not call a small buff. Thanks for sharing with us your thoughts!

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It's a small buff. 

 

Glacius doesn't have much that scales to late game. Q's movement speed slow matters less as the game progresses. The other heroes have intangibles and late game aspects Glacius doesn't have. 

 

Empath has wall and a bonus relevant to carries on R

 

Prophet has AoE damage amp on Q and multiple stun instances on E in an AoE, when applied through R. 

Edited by ElementUser
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I definitely agree with you in that Glacius has no scaling to the lategame compared to Empath or Prophet, however this is mainly due to the fact that Chilling Presence becomes irrelevant very quickly, as heroes obtain more and more items. Some heroes just don't need too much mana to fuel their skillset, while the global HP regen always remains relevant, as health pools matter a lot in a fight.

However, Glacius in the early game does have a lot of momentum as he can initiate from very far with his tundra blast (600 range + 400 radius) to follow it up with ice imprisonment, while Prophet can struggle with his initiation before the ultimate. I think it's totally fine that Glacius remains stronger in the early game when it comes to a gank / man up on a lane, but I really don't see why this advantage should carry over to the later stages of the game. I think it's safe to say that Empath struggles the most in the early game out of these 3 heroes in terms of power, but she definitely has the most impact in the lategame thanks to shrunken head. Her ultimate has basically little to no counterplay, while shrunken head completely destroys a Glacius or Prophet.

In my books, Glacius should be the one who shines the brightest in the early game kills, Prophet in the midgame with his ultimates where there are no shrunken heads, and Empath in the lategame where it's all about carries pretty much.

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That's exactly what each of them do now... No changes are required. 

 

I already mentioned I can do what I want to Glacius and technically all heroes. He's my favourite hero, and i can buff him as long at it's reasonable, which it is. You're exaggerating the weight of these changes. 

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Well, we might not agree on the "weight" of these changes, but I do appreciate to hear your point of view about the changes you made and also your opinion about what I proposed! This game might not have too much time left, but I still enjoy to debate in my mind about what was / wasn't / could be a good change for the game when it comes to hero balance.

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This was the snapshot today. I don't see how you can be upset at Prophet's placement:

5fgT0eA.png

 

In fact I was expecting Prophet to drop a bit more - he'll probably fluctuate between 52-54% on a longer term basis. My point is that Prophet is a strong support hero.

The heroes are in a healthy state of balance - Glacius' win rate bumped up by 1% for the time being. Because of Magebane's existence and Glacius' weaknesses though (slow, fragile, limited late-game scaling), his win rate will be kept in check & will hover around 54-56% in the long term. Even in the worst case scenario where he breaks 60% win rate, Glacius has plenty of weaknesses and counterplay - nobody in general also complains about Glacius.

In general, my vision of the final state of HoN's balance has been achieved, and I'm quite satisfied with that. Support heroes are generally dominant in performance and are generally strong in the laning phase & have an impact throughout the game, which doesn't happen as much in other MOBAs. Apparently, I heard League of Legends' support heroes started becoming really powerful recently too...

Edited by ElementUser
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I don't think my posts reflect that I'm upset with Prophet's placement, in fact the changes I proposed would even hurt his early game presence. My main point with the first post was the fact that with this recent change, getting Q on lvl 4 is not really optimal anymore, as maxing out heal and stun is just stronger overall. The whole point of introducing the slow mechanic on Q was to make it a "1 point wonder" according to you, which is basically no longer the case.

The other thing I tried to explain with my main post is that I was expecting to see Glacius getting some kind of nerfs given how well he does in general, and other strong supports in the same boat did receive some light nerfs.

As for the state of the game, to be honest with you I'm not following the scene of other MOBA-s, but I could totally see support heroes not performing so hot in other games. I think it should be normal to see support heroes have better win percentages overall, as they are supposed to be strong in the early game, and not all matches can translate into the lategame where other roles take over the advantage.

All in all I think you are doing a great job actually in terms of balance, the game had been really fun for me for the last couple months now. Needless to say, it's really hard to find the perfect balance where no one would complain, but just because I don't agree with you in something, it does not mean that you are doing something wrong. I think it's very important for the game to get feedback from their users, as some suggestions might end up getting implemented in the future. I know I did not write too many positive points in my main post, but there were a lot of changes in the latest patch that I do appreciate and was definitely the correct move to do. It can be really overwhelming to make these decisions as only one person when it comes to balance issues, but I think you are doing well overall!

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