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Walking on Air - Patch #69

Team Horizon

Jun 16, 2021

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Patch will be live Thursday, Jun 17th around 6:00pm EST!

This is a massive patch from top to bottom. From marketplace to Discovery mode enhancements. Since we were so busy getting it ready, we didn’t give ourselves enough time to think of a joke for the intro paragraph like we usually do. So we’re sorry to say that for patch 69, we could not think of anything funny to say.

📺 This patch we removed casting requirements for all non-targeted spells, and removed many casting requirements on targeted cards.

Throughout Final Testing Phase (FTP), we’ve been monitoring the Skyweaver Market to inform how we should proceed when the economy is live. FTP serves as an excellent testing ground for us to determine the best adjustments we can make in favour of a sustainable player-owned economy.

When FTP launched, we supplied the Market with 10 copies of each Silver card and no Gold cards. Moving forward, we’ll supply a larger number of Silvers to the Market. We’ll add 40 copies of each Silver card and they’ll start at approximately 1.50 DAI. We will also supply the Market with some Gold cards! We’ll supply 25 copies of each Gold card as they become available in Conquest (remember: only 8 different Gold card selections can be won each week via Conquest!). These Golds will start at ~10 DAI.

Supplying the Market with Golds solves the issues some of you have been having when interacting with the Market: now, you’ll be able to sell and buy Gold cards! Horizon does not generate any revenue doing this. We’ll share a detailed blog post explaining exactly how the Market works in the near future.

We also have an amazing new feature for Discovery Mode. We are now able to control and adjust the ‘Appearance Rate’ for each individual card in discovery mode during deck creation, allowing us to balance individual Prisms in discovery without changing the cards themselves!

For this first patch, we’ve increased the odds of finding each of the top 50 cards (by winrate) in the WIS and INT Prisms by 5-10%, and decreased the odds of finding the bottom 50 cards by 5-10% each, as WIS and INT had the lowest win rates out of the 5 prisms in Discovery. So while you won't see any particular card way more often, you will get better decks on average when using WIS and/or INT decks.

The opposite is true for STR and AGY. They had the highest win rates, so we adjusted their appearance rates so their top 50 cards now appear 5-10% less often, and their lowest 5-10% more often, which should help rein in their effectiveness slightly. HRT’s card appearance rates were left unchanged for now, as its winrate was in the middle of all Prisms, and sat right around 52% overall, and tended to trend up/down based on what its secondary prism was.

We’re very excited about this new feature and the possibilities it brings to Discovery mode, and this week’s adjustment is just a first step, as we intend to keep iterating on the odds and adjusting them to achieve balance in the Discovery metagame. So get on out there and try to discover all the new fun that Discovery Mode has to offer!

Improvements 🦾

  • On mobile, tapping the Hero dropdown in the play screen will now open the Hero picker sidebar right away, instead of showing the Hero details. Hero details can be accessed by long-press.
  • If a card is not available in the marketplace, adding a deck with that card to your cart will no longer prevent purchasing that deck. Instead, unavailable cards will be clearly marked, and you can purchase all the other cards.
  • The number of unique Gold & Silver cards you own is now displayed on your profile, next to your total number of Gold & Silver cards. Thanks Joss Stardad for the suggestion!

Changes ⚙️

  • Removed casting requirements for all non-targeted spells, and removed many casting requirements on targeted cards. Even if the card will do nothing, you’re now allowed to play it. This enables advanced plays involving Inspire effects or cards that look for other cards in the graveyard.
  • Cards with “After” triggers will no longer resolve their effects if they die or leave the field in between their triggering event & the resolution of their effects. This change affects the following cards: Plane Ranger, Queen of Jacks, Fly Guy, Dark Adept, Soul Guide, Leonitus, Curious, Trapper Keeper, Cloud Guard, Archeloth, Guru, Minstrel, Amaruath, Inspirator, Archivist, and Rocket.

Bugfixes 🐛

  • Fixed a bug where Washed Away would have no effect while Geod was in play.
  • Fixed a bug where trigger icons on a unit would incorrectly flash when that trigger failed to resolve.
  • Fixed a bug where the action history would incorrectly show that a unit triggered when that trigger failed to resolve.
  • Fixed a bug where the action preview was leaking information about the opponent’s hand in Practice games.
  • Fixed multiple bugs involving Icy Touch in the marketplace & library.
  • Fixed a bug causing the Skyweaver signup screen to be scrolled partially off-screen.
  • Fixed the price + fees calculation showing the wrong number when selling cards.
  • Fixed a bug where Righteous was not dusting units when killed at the same time as them.
  • Decks & Graveyards now correctly show the green glow when you hover over them.
  • You can see the top card of the graveyard by mousing over it again.

Final Test Phase

Cards

Hey everyone, welcome to patch #69. In addition to the exciting new discovery weighting system we implemented, We've got a number of constructed-driven tweaks this week, though not quite as many as we saw last week, as the meta has been looking considerably more balanced, so this week was focused more on tweaking some underperformers, tuning down a few overperformers and trying some small reworks to a few cards that were really unused, which should open up some new options in the meta. So let's take a look!


Firesight (4)

Firesight - Do 2 damage to target ally. Draw two fire cards.

    Text: Do 2 damage to your right-most ally. Draw two fire cards. Do 2 damage to target ally. Draw two fire cards.

A small buff to a card that honestly was doing fine in the stats, even in higher-level Constructed, but this makes it a bit simpler and more versatile, allowing you to use it to pop a left-positioned death effect unit, or target your hero to avoid burning your right-positioned Guard units.


Burn Out (1007)

Burn Out - Draw four. Dust your deck.

    Text: Draw three. Dust your deck. Draw four. Dust your deck.

A bit of a scary buff here to a card that has been seeing next to no play and had a bad Winrate. Is drawing 4 for 2c good enough to justify nuking the remainder of your deck? IMO it should be, but we'll have to see.


Maw Worm (1017)

Maw Worm - Summon: Dust your dead units. Give your hero +1 health for each.

    Power: 5 6

    Health: 9 8

A small stat tweak here to try to make Maw Worm feel a bit more AGY-esque via trading a bit of health for attack power. Still feels a bit odd but I like certain outliers existing in prisms, like this in AGY and Blood Hunter in HRT. They help give life to unconventional builds.


Treasure Chest (1029)

Treasure Chest - Draw a spell and a unit.

    Text: Give your hero +2 health. Draw a spell and a unit. Draw a spell and a unit.

Small nerf here, treasure chest was one of the most played AGY cards, so snipping a little bit of healing off. Draw 2 + banner should still be very good.


Gladiator (26)

Gladiator - Glory: Gain guard and banner.

    Power: 3 2

    Health: 2 3

A pretty exciting tweak here. Gladiator was one of the lowest winrate constructed STR cards overall, and I missed STR having a bulky 3c armor guy. The 3c 2/3 armor statline used to be a nightmare, but we've added/upgraded better removal since then, like Eradicate, Defragment, etc. and midrange threats have powered up, so I think old Gladiator will feel fairer now.


Orchid (2021)

Orchid - Give units in your hand +1/+1, and spells -1 cost. Gain 1 mana next turn.

    Text: Give units in your hand +1/+1. Give spells in your hand -1 cost. Give units in your hand +1/+1, and spells -1 cost. Gain 1 mana next turn.

    Traits: banner None

Tweaking here. Despite seeing plenty of usage, even among high-level players, Orchid's winrate is still fairly low, so we're exchanging the banner for the old mana-banking effect, making Orchid weaker the turn its used, but more valuable after, since it allows for a larger catch up play the next turn, which feels more unique and WIS-themed.


Eldest (2037)

Eldest - Glory: Give your hero armor.

    Power: 5 6

Small buff to a really underused WIS card. Shouldn't be a major deal but it allows eldest to tussle and threaten a bit better. Should be a win for Etherwail decks.


Cloud Sloth (2055)

Cloud Sloth - Sunrise: Give cards in your hand -1 cost.

    Power: 2 3

Small buff here to an underperformer to make it a bit less of a punching bag. He's got some big claws on him!


Guru (2077)

Guru - After you draw a 2 cost or higher spell, give it -1 cost.

    Cost: 5 6

    Text: When you draw a 2 cost or higher spell, give it -1 cost. After you draw a 2 cost or higher spell, give it -1 cost.

    Power: 4 5

    Health: 5 6

Nerfing back up the curve, right now the meta is pretty balanced, with AGY still leading the pack a bit, but the one outlier was WIS/AGY banner OTK, with a 66%+ winrate, so I'm tuning Guru back up the curve but also giving him +1/+1, so he provides a bit more tempo on curve. Hopefully WIS/AGY OTK will have enough tools to remain a player while being a bit more fair.

Guru's text update also showcases a minor but important tweak to certain triggered and aura effects. Now, if an effect Says "After" it means that needs to be alive in order to fire - so if an effect kills guru and simultaneously causes you to draw, he won't discount any of the cards drawn, since he needs to be in play 'after' the cards are drawn to trigger. This change also affects cards like Sworn Oni and Sapphire, Which are Auras, and a number of other triggered effects like Amaruath, Minstrel, etc. However, some cards like Vishiva and Soul Shepherd use the language "When" instead, which means that they are able to trigger if they die alongside other units, likely from a boardclear, etc. as that's an important intended behavior for them.


Cloud Guard (93)

Cloud Guard - After an enemy unit is summoned, this unit attacks it.

    Text: When an enemy unit is summoned, this unit attacks it. After an enemy unit is summoned, this unit attacks it.

    Health: 5 6

A small buff to an underperformer.


Fire Noble (2091)

Fire Noble - Summon: Do 1 damage to enemies.

    Cost: 2 3

    Text: Death: Do 1 damage to enemies. Summon: Do 1 damage to enemies.

    Health: 2 3

Reworking two WIS cards that were both pretty useless ATM. Noble gains +1hp and +1c but also triggers her effect on summon, making her similar to a really old card 'Daredemon' that was formerly potent and had a similar effect. Having greater control over the timing of Noble's effect should make her considerably more valuable.


Fuji (2073)

Fuji - Death: Attach Flames to a random enemy.

    Cost: 3 2

    Traits: stealth,wither stealth

    Power: 3 2

Likewise, Fuji moves down the curve while dropping wither and 1pow. Honestly he may have been able to keep wither, but I think moving to 2c will already be big for him, forcing the opponent to remove him and risk getting flamed, or leave him and risk being wiped by potion, and also makes using him & his potion cost 5c, rather than 6c, which is already considerably more appealing.


Friendly Fawn (3055)

Friendly Fawn - Play: Give target ally unit +1/+1 and guard.

    Text: None Play: Give target ally unit +1/+1 and guard.

    Spell: Rodent Problem None

One of the more radical changes we've seen lately, a rework of a card that was pretty underwhelming. I considered buffing its power or hp but that felt like it could be a bit much, so now it trades the spell for the ability to buff and guard up an ally, bolstering your board presence while protecting itself, which feels thematic for HRT and the card as a whole. Who wouldn't want to protect such a cute face!


Grubbs (3065)

Grubbs - Summon: Dust the top unit of both graves to gain their traits.  (Guard over stealth.)

    Traits: None stealth

Small buff, Grubbs was really underperforming, so it now starts with stealth, making it slightly better if it fails to consume many keywords. Should be a minor but impactful buff, especially when it consumes armor or banner.


Floodwater (4022)

Floodwater - Return your dead 1 cost and higher water cards  to deck. Draw eight water cards.

    Text: Return your dead water units to deck. Draw eight water cards. Return your dead 1 cost and higher water cards to deck. Draw eight water cards.

A particularly exciting change here! Floodwater was really underperforming, and barely used, so I've brought back some of its old ability to recur spells. The two main problems with that effect in the past were that it could recur Mana Potions/Flasks for combo decks, and you could potentially loop two Floodwaters together for infinite value. By limiting the recursion to 1c and higher cards that means Mana spells will not be recycled, and currently, its nearly impossible to create two Floodwaters, so that looping potential should remain limited at best. Can't wait to see what impact this change can make!


Orion (4032)

Orion - Summon: Set all other units to 3/3.

    Traits: guard guard,armor

    Spell: Shield None

Small reversion, giving Orion his armor back in exchange for his shield. Should make his body a bit more impactful.


Doctor Vile (4039)

Doctor Vile - Death: Add two Vile Vial to both hands.

    Power: 2 3

As expected, the nerfs last time really knocked him down, so I'm tweaking the power back up. I think only dropping 2 Vials is really the balancing this needed.


Subjugate (4099)

Subjugate - Set enemy units to 1 power.

    Cost: 3 2

Moving down to 2c. it seems scary but leaving any enemy units alive can often be extremely risky, so I think it should be reasonable. does make Subjugate-Moon boardclears more appealing as an option though!


Mushka (36)

Mushka - Glory: Attach Anima.

    Text: Glory: Dust your bottom dead earth card to attach Anima. Glory: Attach Anima.

The first of three cards to receive a simplification by removing the "dust bottom earth" clause from them. Mushka is probably the most frightening since its ability to repeatedly stack buffs could be problematic, but it has been weak in Constructed lately, so IMO it shouldn't be too unreasonable.


Roothog (45)

Roothog - Summon: Attach Roots to enemy units.

    Text: Summon: Dust your bottom dead earth card to attach Roots to enemy units. Summon: Attach Roots to enemy units.

The second of the two, shouldn't be a big deal since it comes down late enough in the game for the dust clause not to matter, since you should have a dead earth card by that point in 99% of cases unless you're extremely unlucky.


Earth Spike (53)

Earth Spike - Do 3 damage to target unit. Attach Roots to it.

    Text: Do 3 damage to target unit. Dust your bottom dead earth card to attach Roots to it. Do 3 damage to target unit. Attach Roots to it.

A notable buff here, but next to 1 cost deal 3 cards like Strike Down and Arcane Ray it feels pretty fair.


Grimlord (62)

Grimlord - Death: Attach Wall of Dead to your hero.

    Traits: guard guard,wither

A small buff as well as improvement to theming - something surrounded by zomboid and that drools toxins from its gaping maw really should have Wither.


Rite Knight (1036)

Rite Knight - Glory: Attach Ritual.

    Text: Glory: Dust the enemy's top dead spell to attach Ritual. Glory: Attach Ritual.

Small simplification by removing the dust clause. We can definitely add more dusting in the future, but dusting as a cost adds a fair amount of complexity to otherwise simple cards, so I'd prefer to have this kind of dusting on spells like Raise Arms and Grave Roil, rather than Units.


Puppet Strings (1086)

Puppet Strings - Draw and summon a  1 cost enemy unit. Reveal a random card in the enemy hand.

    Text: Draw and summon a 1 cost enemy unit. Attach Chains to it. Draw and summon a 1 cost enemy unit. Reveal a random card in the enemy hand.

Was really underused and kind of weak, so I'm trying a bit of a spicy buff here, not placing chains and peeking at a card from the enemy hand. Helps to make it more useful and thematic.


Huntaro (1028)

Huntaro - Play: Attach Silence to target enemy unit. Do  1 damage to it.

    Text: Play: Attach Silence to target enemy unit. Play: Attach Silence to target enemy unit. Do 1 damage to it.

    Power: 2 1

Was one of the most used and highest winrate cards in AGY, but its tiny stat-pool also made it hard to tweak/nerf, so I came to a bit of a compromise, dropping 1 power but giving it the ability to actually shoot the unit it Silences for 1 damage, which should keep it relevant while reducing its face damage output over time. I suspect this could even be stronger than before, but I like making it more tactical, and the improved thematic value in letting it actually shoot things with its play effect.


Cryoblast (2078)

Cryoblast - Attach Frozen to target enemy unit. Do 1 damage to enemy units.

    Text: Attach Frozen to target unit. Do 1 damage to enemy units. Attach Frozen to target enemy unit. Do 1 damage to enemy units.

Small tweak here, can no longer apply frozen to an ally unit - was a bit of a weird corner case ability that I just wanted to simplify.


Nimbus (4005)

Nimbus - Your 1 cost and higher spells have banner.

    Cost: 2 3

    Traits: None banner

Moving Up the curve to take Subjugate's slot while gaining banner - in the case of Nimbus its more than just a +1c and banner though, as its intended to keep his theming with Int's other spell-modifiers Sparky and Enfuego, who both have the keyword they grant to spells. Should make him a bit more impactful on his own via granting double banner with his attached Hush.


Anti Mago (4008)

Anti Mago - Glory: Attach Flames to the enemy hero.

    Text: Glory: Dust the enemy's top dead card to attach Flames to their hero. Glory: Attach Flames to the enemy hero.

Simplification akin to Rite Knight, no longer has to consume dead cards to apply flames.


Cinder (4038)

Cinder - Sunrise: If your hand has a fire card, attach Fireball.

    Power: 3 2

    Spell: None Barrier

Tweak here, the 3/1 statline was a ton of stats for an INT unit, and his winrate was kind of low regardless, so I've reduced his raw power but given back his tactical usefulness via returning his barrier, helping him survive in the earlygame, though he will push a bit less damage when he does.


Wash Ashore (20046)

Wash Ashore - Spend mana equal to target unit's cost. Return it to hand and attach Dazed to it.

    Cost: X 0

Small backend tweak, Wash Ashore was counted as a "X cost" card even though it didn't really function as one, since it always cost 0 anyways. now its a 0c card that spends mana on resolution, making it simpler and more accurate mechanically.

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