Yesterday Blizzard announced one of the biggest rounds of nerfs in the history of Hearthstone.
The changes targeted one of the new Knights of the Frozen Throne cards—but it also targeted four powerful cards from the Classic set. Innervate, Fiery War Axe, Hex, and Murloc Warleader have all been targeted.
That has been met with anger and surprise by many in the community—not least the game’s professional players.
Fiery War Axe being changed has probably provoked the strongest reaction. Julian “Cydonia” Perrault said that the change meant Warrior would be “relegated to being a weak class in the near future.” Well-known Warrior player “Fibonacci” had stronger words, saying that the nerf would damage the class forever.
However not everyone was entirely negative.
“If they wanted to nerf pirate warrior,” Dima “Rdu” Radu said. “I think there were other ways to do it but we have to agree that Fiery would have continued to be a problematic card every expansion if they let it the way it was. Now it will be tougher for warriors to remove things early in the game so I’m quite interested to see how the future of the class is going to look.”
Outside of the pros, the Reddit community has reacted angrily to the changes, and War Axe in particular. Part of the justification given for the changes has also attracted scorn.
“The other option we considered for Fiery War Axe was to lower its attack to 2,” the post said. “but that change didn’t feel intuitive enough. Generally, changing the mana cost of a card is less disruptive, because you can always see the mana cost of cards in your hand.”
The nerf to Hex has also confused many players, as the card was not really in the meta right now. It’s the only card targeted that wasn’t currently powerful.
Cydonia and Rdu both also highlighted Ultimate Infestation, which wasn’t nerfed, as a card they would have liked to see changed. Blizzard chose to leave it alone, believing that removing some of the ability to ramp it out early was enough to deal with the impact of the card.