Hearthstone’s development team discussed balance issues related to overperforming cards in the Standard and Wild metas in a reddit AMA yesterday.
Starting with class and card balancing, HS_Alec said that Demon Hunter is still being monitored, even after their emergency nerfs they received after two days of the Ashes of Outland expansion being live. There will be one or two cards players can expect to see change in the near future, but they do hope to keep the class in a healthy spot for years to come.
Priest’s rework was long overdue and sorely needed. While the team is currently happy with the spot that the Basic/Classic identity overhaul took them, they are still looking at other spots of the Basic and Classic sets that may need the changes in the future, according to HS_Celestalon.
Besides Demon Hunter cards and the state of post rework Priest, the team has also been eyeing other problematic cards in Standard. Kael’thas Sunstrider, Sacrificial Pact, Bad Luck Albatross, and Frenzied Felwing are all powerful or have designs that are problematic in Hearthstone’s current gameplay space.
Kael’thas Sunstrider provides powerful turns for the player wielding him, and these absurd power-swings only get more crazy in the Wild Format. Sacrificial Pact has been a part of Hearthstone since the very beginning. But with a new class using Demons, the tempo-swings it can provide by killing an enemy Demon and healing you for five all for zero mana is too powerful.
Bad Luck Albatross, while designed to be a counter to Highlander decks, has proven to be strong against a slew of other decks like Pure Paladin and Pure Spell Mage. The card is an asset to Resurrect Priest as well, since it can quickly fill up the opponent’s deck with useless birds delaying their draws. Frenzied Felwing, meanwhile, makes it possible to cheat out one or two early on in fast curves.
The team is also looking at Quest Mage and Darkest Hour Warlocl. In addition to their raw power level, the high roll potential of both decks leave opponents feeling like their input didn’t matter in a game, and changes to both cards should be expected soon. More micro-adjustments are also expected for the arena format and Demon Hunters.