Heroes of the Storm

People are freaking out over the latest Heroes patch and how it nerfs supports.

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They are calling it the "supportocalypse" and "the support slaughter" when, in reality, the nerfs are quite small. Some are claiming Blizzard is forcing them to stop playing support heroes entirely, even though the nerfs only reduce these heroes effectiveness by 5%.  Thread after thread of knee-jerk reactions and complaints all reached a crescendo when the now infamous thread "I don't play support for you" was posted.

Aside from HOTS community gaining a new copy-pasta, there hasn't been much rational discussion about how these support hero nerfs will impact the game. Instead, the emotional response to seeing an entire class of heroes nerfed has inspired many players to lash out against Blizzard for "killing an entire class" in Heroes of the Storm.

▲Bakery, as one of the most well-known professional support players in all of Heroes


Logically, everyone knows that Blizzard developers spend way more time thinking, working, and learning about Heroes of the Storm than any other group of people, but the habit of communities dogpiling on developers with a "what were they thinking?" attitude is still extremely common. In a later thread on Reddit, Bakery went on to explain a better way of discussing these changes:

"I am not saying that people's opinions are wrong. I am saying the way in which they present their opinions is wrong.

I personally do not agree with the direction in which the Support changes are heading, but I am reserving all judgement until I get a real chance to test it, and see if the changes successfully carry the vision behind them."

Bakeries full response can be found here.


Not just a Heroes issue


These reactions happen frequently Hearthstone community as well, most recently with the extremely negative and bewildered response at the card Prince Keleseth. When it was first revealed, it was mocked for being among the worst, weakest cards ever designed. Now, it influences the entire format and is widely accepted as one of the strongest cards in the game.

▲ Cris isn't the only pro player to roll their eyes at the communities over-the-top reaction to these changes.


Highlights from the developer commentary on why these changes are being made:

"About a year ago we introduced a new Armor system. This system ultimately made a lot of Warriors more efficient heal targets, and we mentioned that we planned to go through and remove some healing from Supports when we first implemented the system. This is a change we never ended up doing, so we’re looking at taking care of it now."

It's important to remember that Blizzard already hinted at adjusting all support heroes because of the new armor mechanic so these changes shouldn't come as too much of a shock. Especially considering how oppressively powerful Garrosh and two support heroes feels like in the current patch


"In a vacuum, our Supports are pound-for-pound more powerful than our other Heroes. They are designed to provide enough healing for a team of five, while still bringing things like wave clear, crowd control effects, or decent damage. It’s possible that double Support has always been the ‘best way’ to play, and the community has been trending in this direction for a while."

This is coming straight from the developers and they have no reason to lie about this. Support heroes are overturned individually and a lot of seasoned players already know this. One look at a hero like Rehgar or Kharazim in their current state and it's easy to understand that, yes, support heroes, in general, are stronger than other types of heroes. The loudest complainers about the latest patch see things differently and feel that support heroes don't need the nerf.

▲ Maybe it doesn't feel good to open the "Heroes changed" section of the patch notes and see this as a support player.


"Individually, each of these changes 
are small. However, we feel the sum of these changes could have a meaningful impact on the meta."

One of the most amusing details from this patch are things like Uther's Holy Fire damage being reduced by exactly one or Lucio's Amp-it-Up heal being lowered from 15.5 to 15. The overwhelming majority of these support changes are very modest and most players would hardly notice. The overreaction seen on Reddit and social media seems less about the actual patch changes and more about it they "feel".

What do you think of the latest patch?

You can see the official patch notes your self here and a full explanation of why support heroes were nerfed via this developer commentary post.

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