Hearthstone battles have been ringing to the sound “Leeroy Jenkins!” for months now. The cheap charge card has become something of a game ender because, with the right buff cards, it can cause as much as 32 points of damage in a single hit.
Blizzard have been watching Jenkin’s rise to dominance and have finally found a fair way to nerf him.
He’s not the only card to have seen a quick kick in the shin.
“Leeroy Jenkins created a strategy that revolved around trying to defeat your opponent in one turn without requiring any cards on the board,” Blizzard’s community manager, Zeriyah, wrote. “Fighting for board control and battles between minions make an overall game of Hearthstone more fun and compelling, but taking 20+ damage in one turn is not particularly fun or interactive. This was occurring when Leeroy was used in combination with other cards like Power Overwhelming, Faceless Manipulator, Cold Blood, Shadowstep, and Unleash the Hounds, among others.”
The nerf appears minor, Blizzard have increased Jenkin’s mana cost from 4 to 5, but it prevents him from being buffed by multiple cards in a single turn. Instead, to get his full effect you’ll need to lay down some of those buff cards in the preceding turns, which gives your opponent a chance to battle your strategy or, at the very least, know what’s coming.
The other card to have been nerfed is Starving Buzzard. The changes are a little more complex than Leeroy but the main thrust of it is to increase the cost of a card that provides hunters with a massive card draw. “Starving Buzzard now costs 5 (up from 2) and now has 3 Attack and 2 Health (up from 2 Attack and 1 Health).
“The amount of cards Starving Buzzard allowed Hunter players to draw ultimately ended up being too excessive for its low cost. This change will allow the Hunter’s opponent more time to react to both the Starving Buzzard and the cards drawn by its power.”
These balance changes are due to go live on 22 September, From then Blizzard don’t plan on making any balance changes till after BlizzCon and the Hearthstone World Championship.
If you’re just starting out in Hearthstone you should check out some of Nick’s deck suggestions.