In addition to the two units we announced yesterday, we’ll also be pushing a large list of balance changes at 11:59pm tonight. Many of them are quite minor, but some are very important. A complete listing, alongside an explanation for each change, is provided below:
Asteri Cannon – HP increased from 11 to 16. On-click ability now gives a 1hp Barrier instead of a 2hp Forcefield, but still costs 5 HP.
Despite being nerfed a short while ago, Asteri Cannon remains one of the strongest units in Prismata, so we’ve weakened Asteri Cannon’s click ability to help bring it down in power. Simultaneously, the unit should be stronger in situations where you’re getting breached, and the Barriers created by its new click ability have lifespan 1, meaning that you’ll have to put a little bit more thought into when you click each Asteri Cannon you buy.
Bloodrager – Supply increased from 4 to 10.
This is a minor change that should affect few Prismata games. Bloodrager was originally created to have 4 supply because we were worried about games spiraling out of control if players simply bought more Bloodragers instead of attacking one another. After some further testing, we discovered that our worries were mostly unfounded at that games where more than 4 Bloodragers are bought are both fairly rare, and actually quite interesting.
Doomed Drone – Supply changed from 20 to 10.
This change comes after many users favoured it on our last survey. Though the results were far from unanimous, a majority of respondents wanted to give it a try. If it turns out to be lame, we’ll revert it later.
Chieftain – Cost changed from 7BGG to 8BGG.
Many users complained that Chieftain’s high supply count, high HP, and low cost combined to create a powerful unit that often resulted in games dragging on far longer than they otherwise would. In fact, Chieftain is one of the strongest defenders in the game, beating out Infusion Grid in terms of defensive value per resource spent. We like strong defenders, but felt that Chieftain was pushing it a little too far, given that it’s fairly easy to purchase and comes with a decent attack threat as well. In studying many possible changes for the unit, we ultimately decided that a simple cost increase would be the most straightforward.
Energy Matrix – Cost changed from 9BB to 8BB. No longer comes with a Pixie.
Energy Matrix’s Pixie was an odd vestigial remnant of an old design. We’ve simplified the unit to a vanilla defender, mostly for reasons relating to the single player campaign. It’s also a little bit weaker.
Frost Brooder – Cost increased from 4RR to 5RR, lifespan decreased from 7 to 6.
A double nerf for Frost Brooder! Many players liked the direction that we took in our last change to Frost Brooder, when we modified it to produce Frostbites with a finite lifespan. However, most players felt that the unit was still too strong, so we’ve weakened it in two ways. The reduced lifespan will make it easier to survive a wave of multiple Frost Brooders by defending until the Frostbites all run out of lifespan. However, many games are over before the lifespan of Frost Brooder is even relevant, so we’ve also increased the price to weaken the unit more generally.
Gauss Fabricator – Cost decreased form 13GGGG to 12GGGG, HP decreased from 13 to 10.
This change has two purposes: to strengthen Gauss Fabricator in standard games, and to weaken it in situations where the owner is getting breached. Previously, it was often only correct to attack a Fabricator (rather than the Gauss Cannons it produces) if that Fabricator had a large amount of lifespan remaining. Now, the decision will be more difficult in situations where the Fabricator has lower lifespan remaining.
Grenade Mech – Click ability now sacrifices a Blastforge and produces three pixies (up from two).
We like Grenade Mech’s new ability, so we want to see how far we can push it. At three Pixies for one Blastforge, you might even consider buying Blastforges repeatedly just for the extra damage. We’re prepared to revert this one if it turns out to be too much, but that’s what the alpha is for, right? We had some very enjoyable Grenade Mech games in testing, so we hope you’ll like this one!
Redeemer – Cost changed from 7GGGB to 5GGB. Instead of constructing 4 Gauss Charges for the opponent, purchasing a Redeemer now constructs *6* Gauss Charges for the opponent: 2 with build time 1, 2 with build time 2, and 2 with build time 3.
This is a big change on a problematic unit. Redeemer’s cost was previously changed from 8GGB to 7GGGB to reduce the potency of a number of intense Redeemer rushes. Unfortunately, it wound up having an unintended side effect of introducing a very high player 2 winrate in games involving Redeemer (player 2 won over 54% of Redeemer games!) The current change is intended to address that problem and smooth out some sharp Redeemer openings that often punished players severely in the opening.
Scorchilla – Cost decreased from 5RG to 3RG; buildtime increased from 2 to 3.
This change is intended as a small buff to Scorchilla to help boost its power level and increase the number of viable combos in Scorchilla games. See this blog post for more information.
Sentinel – Cost changed from 8RG to 7RG. Stamina decreased from 4 to 3.
Sentinel is one of the most cost-effective sources of defense in Prismata, but its extremely slow nature and high cost make it a tough buy in many Prismata games. To remedy this, we’ve reduced Sentinel’s cost so it should be a little more accessible. We had to reduce Sentinel’s stamina to maintain the unit’s balance, but in many games, this reduction won’t even be felt. In fact, only a small fraction of Sentinels were actually clicked 4 times.
Tantalum Ray – HP decreased from 10 to 9.
This change serves two purposes. First and foremost, it solves a troublesome user interface situation whereby swiping or shift-clicking a stack of Tantalum Rays could lead to players unintentionally suiciding Tantalum rays with 2 HP remaining. Secondly, it provides a mild nerf to Tantalum Rays in breach-invulnerable strategies, where the unit was often a little too strong.
Venge Cannon – Cost decreased by 2 from 3GGG + sac 3 Drones to 1GGG + sac 3 Drones; ability cost increased from GGG to GGGG.
This is a big one. It’s also another example of us making further changes to a unit that we’ve modified before. A number of months ago, Venge Cannon was changed from a 3GG unit with a GGGG ability cost into a 3GGG unit with a GGG ability cost. The goal of this change was to reduce the strength of some insanely powerful Venge Cannon rushes that aimed to convert all Drones into Venge Cannons very quickly. The change achieved its stated goals, but made Venge Cannon into a much weaker unit that was rarely good in an all-in strategy. Now, we’ve decided to partially revert this change, but price Venge Cannon at 1GGG instead of 3GG, maintaining a triple G tech requirement in Venge Cannon’s price to make degenerate rushes harder to pull off. It’s actually a small bit stronger than the old 3GG Venge Cannon, but the new cost makes converting all Drones into Venge Cannons quite a bit more awkward. Despite thoroughly testing the unit to rule out any overly degenerate openings working at the 1GGG price, we’re prepared to increase the cost to 2GGG if the 1GGG price ends up being too strong.
Wincer – Cost decreased from 9RBBG to 8RBBG.
Despite having a very powerful effect, Wincer hasn’t seen a great deal of play at 9RBBG, so we’re going to try a small buff to the unit. Wincer will remain at an RBBG tech cost to ensure that fast Wincer rushes aren’t too powerful.
Last, but not least, the Xeno change. As we discussed on the blog earlier this week, this changed was aimed at Xeno Guardian’s unacceptably high player 2 winrate.
And one more thing…
The update goes live tonight at midnight ET! See you on the ladder!