Top 5 Legends of Runeterra Card Nerfs for Patch 1.4
Hey everybody it’s Metaworldgaming’s Juggernaught!
Riot just announced the “Season of Fortune” outlining content updates into Patch 1.7 and beyond, breathing life into the state of the game.
Twenty balance changes are being added to the upcoming Patch 1.4 which players have been desperately waiting for. Simply put, this is going to turn the game on its head.
The new patch will be going live this week which gives us time to ponder over what those twenty cards could or should be.
Today I’m going to go over the 5 best candidates for a nerf in Patch 1.4.
5. Warning Shot
The Rising Tides expansion was comprised of 120 new cards and a new region to boot. Many game-altering effects were introduced such as stealing cards from your opponent’s deck (we will get to that later) and in the case of Warning Shot, Burst speed burn damage.
The Burst speed mechanic has been much maligned by the broad community for its feeling of helplessness especially in the case of Nexus damage. Although we had several un-interactable damaging scenarios like Ezreal or Noxus Burn cards in the past, we now have a simple 0 mana card that does 1 Nexus damage, a troubling precedent for the future.
The intention was clear that the developers thought that Plunder needed a cheap activator, however even beyond the flawed game design of uninteractable damage, Warning Shot is simply too cheap.
I would like to see either the card goto 1 mana, the most likely change in my opinion, or change the card from “Burst” to “Fast”. This would allow players to anticipate a Plunder set up or react accordingly, aspects lacking in the counterplay for Bilgewater strategies.
4. Pilfered Goods
As mentioned with the previous card, The Rising Tide also brought the concept of taking your opponent’s cards permanently into the game. Some people call it Klepto, others Yoink, the fact of the matter is most people hate it, but that’s a topic for another time.
Instead of a referendum on the mechanic itself, Pilfered Goods itself is worthy of a nerf. A two-mana draw two cards would already be a stellar card, however, these cards are even more valuable as they disrupt your opponent’s strategy, forcing them to either respect every single card in their deck or play right into the ultimate punish.
Pilfered Goods could easily be a four mana spell similar to Salvage, which while the Toss mechanic could be seen as a benefit in particular strategies, is a balancing effect as to disincentivize playing it outside its “intended” archetype. However, Pilfered Goods would still be the more universal card with this change.
3. Riptide Rex
Yet another Bilgewater card that has gone without a nerf far too long. Riptide Rex at first glance has an absurd effect; doing any skill seven times is vaunting, to say the least.
On further inspection, it is a two-pronged effect that not only affects the board but also does Nexus damage without needing to commit to either.
With Warning Shot being an instant, unaccountable enabler, Rex punishes any line of play.
Developed board? Riptide Rex. Open board? Riptide Rex. In a game that poses many forks in the road, Riptide Rex exasperates this dilemma.
A quick fix would be to make the skill a single effect to at the very least, allow Deny as a counter. Beyond that, I would like to see the number be lowered but it would take testing to determine how exactly.
2. Omen Hawk
Frey did not see much success until recently. Patch 1.2 led way to a multitude of Frey strategies including the very popular Mf/Sej. Everybody has certainly felt the pain (or pleasure depending on which side you are on) of developing Omen Hawk into an overstated curve.
Many combats are decided by a single stat in LoR. Spreading +1/+1 across two units right at the start has massive implications for the outcome of a game. Omen Hawk did have a counterpart, the long-forgotten Inspiring Mentor.
Although Inspiring Mentor has not seen much play since open beta, it was at one time, great enough so that it warranted a nerf to its now neutered state.
Omen Hawk’s comparison would be that it buffs +1/+1 to two units, however, they are on top of your deck which means you cannot use it instantly nor chose the cards it buffs.
Inspiring Mentor has the drawback of only buffing one card, however, it is immediate and selected. If Inspiring Mentor got nerfed, why would Omen Hawk be exempt from the same?
Another comparison would be Legion Rearguard. Legion Rearguard on turn 1 with the attack token gave that player such an advantage that led to its nerf.
I would argue that Omen Hawk on turn 1 into drawing buffed, playable units determines the outcome of the game in a similar manner.
Two changes are viable for Omen Hawk. The first one would be reducing the number of cards buffed. The second would be to either buff only the health or only the attack.
I personally like the health only buff as it fits in well with the flavor of Frey.
And finally, at number one, we have the Metaworldgaming idol, Heimerdinger. We have been jamming Heimerdinger since open beta and haven’t stopped since. Heimerdinger’s dominance has been the perfect storm of both card and game design.
The game allows for three mana to be banked, many of the archetype’s best spells are three mana including Get Excited!, Twin Disciplines, and Flash of Brilliance, AND to top it all off, the best turret happens to be 3 three mana.
With the stars aligned Heimerdinger is able to pull off incredible board AND Nexus damage in a matter of 1 turn. Converting your spell mana into units is one of the strongest plays in Legends of Runeterra since spells are balanced by the fact that they aren’t developing the board.
Heimerdinger throws that design limitation out the window, exploiting the mana bank feature with powerful spells to create threatening boards and lethal your opponent before they have a chance to react. One way to address Heimerdinger’s lethal potential would be to rearrange the keywords on the turrets.
The Barrier turret is often considered the worst of the turrets for its lopsided stat line of 7/1 and fragile keyword. The two most common turrets are 3 and 4 which happen to have the strongest aggro keywords in Elusive and Fearsome.
Another adjustment to consider is Heimerdinger going to 6 mana. This would have such an impact on the deck as many of its plays are predicated on mana access and we have seen how many cards have been neutered by a simple mana change.
My hesitation would be if this would be detrimental to Heimerdinger to the point of unplayable, however, I have faith in the game designers to balance the game as they have proven it time and time again.
And that concludes our top 5 broken cards to be addressed in Patch 1.4. Feel free to check out our other videos including deck profiles and our weekly meta content! Thanks for reading and remember to subscribe to catch our next article based on our video topics.