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Devblog: Balancing

By [Dewit] - COMMUNITY MANAGER - September 08, 2017, 12:00:00

Whether veteran or Rank 2, you regularly write to us on the forums or social media about combos that are too powerful, cards that can't be countered, and which gods are currently OP. We've taken your feedback since Update 1.41 into account, and we're going to implement a major balancing patch on September 11th!

But wait, there's more! We are also going to introduce balancing on a more frequent and significant basis. Patch 1.5 will be the first in a long series of patches designed to boost class cards. Toutoune, Shyendalar, and Kewl will fill you in on the details!


A Pervasive Core Set of Cards


By now we're all aware that the frequent use of certain neutral cards is hindering the variety of decks in Krosmaga. These cards basically amount to the same thing in all competitive decks, regardless of the class or archetype chosen, and they're a real problem for the game right now.

One aspect stands out in these overrepresented cards: they are neutral cards, thus replacing class cards by a wide margin. An analysis of these neutral cards reveals the qualities that make them so ubiquitous: 

  1. They have abilities for which there aren't any counters or an equivalent in other cards.
  2. An excellent quality/cost ratio – this very often translates into a speed increase that's impossible to match except by creating new "monsters."
  3. Their autonomy: these cards are frequently enough by themselves, and they don't really require any elaborate combos to reach the Dofus.

Among these cards, there are of course a few Infinites and Krosmics (Adamai and Major Arachnee, for example), but also more basic cards, of which we can cite 3 examples. First there is the Tsu Tsu Mikaze, which (when playing aggro) allows you to quickly set down several threats, and also multiplies in your hand; then the Arachnee Embroiderer, which renders anything without at least 3 AT defenseless; and finally the Midgin Knight, which is practically unrivaled in terms of attack at turn 4.

These neutral cards, powerful and too often unmatched by class cards, have slowly become a fixture of every competitive deck. They are currently so reliable that it seems difficult to avoid putting them in a deck. These cards thus have the pernicious effect of drastically limiting the variety of decks played. And so, in this sort of environment, the popularity of a god is determined by the number and ease of win conditions for each class. The second undesirable side effect is that to revamp a meta in these conditions, we're forced to break the win conditions of a popular god, only to see another god immediately take its place with the same core set of overpowered neutral cards.

What we'd like to do now is replace these core neutral cards with class cards, with the goal of adding more variety to the game.


Our Process for Selecting Cards to Buff/Nerf


Whenever we want to make changes to cards, we have to observe and analyze the whole surrounding environment. Should we nerf the card everyone's criticizing? Or should we instead offer more accessible counters? Maybe offer alternative cards that can compete?

To choose which cards to nerf, we look at several statistical parameters:

  • the number of times a card has been played
  • the win rate of decks using the card
  • how often the card is found in players' collections
  • the rank at which the card is most often played

Then we compare this data to the makeup of decks that are most played and have the highest win rate in the top ranking, as well as how the card is used in these decks. We also base our analysis on your own perceptions of the card, as conveyed to us on the forums and on Discord.

This allows us to get a good sense of what cards are overly strong and might be good candidates for modification.

We use the same process to identify cards that are underpowered or unplayed.

As our current goal is to make neutral cards less pervasive and to foster more variety, we're going to use a very precise focus when selecting cards to modify.

You can expect ubiquitous and overpowered neutral cards to be replaced by class cards.


Restricting the Number of Krosmics per Deck


We also realized the amount of Krosmic cards being incorporated into decks was increasing over time. As time goes on, more and more players have access to these powerful cards; and as we continue to make expansions, there will be an even greater number of Krosmic cards.

Krosmics are powerful cards, sometimes as powerful as Infinites, and when you can take all the overpowered cards in a match that you want, there's really no choice anymore. No matter what god you play or deck archetype you go with, all competitive players at the moment have a base set of Krosmics that is the same from one deck to the next!

Ultimately, if we don't do something quickly, we're going to end up with decks primarily composed of identical Krosmic cards when there is much more content for Krosmaga.

That is why we've decided to limit the number of Krosmic cards to 7 per deck.

Once Krosmics are limited in number as Infinites are, you'll have to answer some questions when building your deck. Will you select the Decepticod to grind your opponent or attack more quickly and forcefully? Will you play a Golden Piwi for your draw pile? Will you keep the Protoflex for win conditions, or perhaps Fleeflee? Will you use the Avengers or instead go with the Brotherhood of the Tofu?

This limitation requires you to make certain choices, which will enable a better rotation of Krosmic cards and greater variety of decks encountered.


Regular Balancing Patches


To achieve our goals and quite simply allow for changes to the meta, we've decided to increase the frequency and impact of upcoming balancing patches.

We want the meta to be more lively and dynamic – to that end, we've launched a sizable balancing project. Over the next few months, we'll be releasing a substantial patch each month to redesign cards for several gods in order to boost their appeal, strengthen their archetypes, and provide for more viable win conditions.

There will be several essential nerfs in the coming update, but what we ultimately want to do is focus on the viability of class mechanics, while also making improvements to existing class cards.


We can't wait to see how these balancing patches influence the decks you'll create. We'll be keeping an eye out!

– Toutoune, Shyendalar, and Kewl

First Ankama intervention

Replying to SirPandaaa

This feels more like a translation issue. I'll pass the word to the team, to see if we can fix this. 
See message in context
Reactions 33
Score : 2
I think its all a great idea as i play this game everyday multiple times. I had an idea for future updates, maybe could we add more types of card packs you can buy from the shop, like possibly being able to buy a pack for specific gods that might include one or two of their specific cards. Just a thought. Keep up the great work guys this game truly is the best.
0 0
Well, currently there might not be enough cards per class to justify this, but I'll forward the idea to the team. 
Score : 1
Really glad to see this post, because it lists everything I think needs fixing in the game. Greatly looking forward to see what's next for the project, this gives me a lot of faith in the team.
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Score : 226
This sounds good. I'm excited to see what changes you are making.

A bit of topic, but could you make some of the keywords the same. For example
Bakara says "Retrive",
Pet Drheller says "Return"
and Elite Young Drheller says "Recover".
1 0
This feels more like a translation issue. I'll pass the word to the team, to see if we can fix this. 
Score : 226
Even the same infinite swaps keyword.
*Lou says "Pick up"
**Lou says "Retrieve".
1 0
Score : 771
Im looking forward to a new and what sounds like a fluid meta.
Your openness with the community is fantastic and your willingness to make changes to the game to keep it fresh is also fantastic!
I look forward to building some new decks on th 11th.
Thanks for the update
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Score : -6
While limiting Krosmic will certainly prevent players using all the best krosmics in one deck, allowing for more diverse decks (assuming that there just certain krosmics that are just better than others), won't it also cause the less powerful krosmics to become entirely unusable as. I feel the restriction may also be more punishing for class's that have better krosmic's themselves as they would be able to use them without sacrificng the powerful krosmics other class's are using.
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This limitation is only one aspect of the changes. balancing the Krosmix, by making the staple Neutrals less overwhelming and the Class ones more appealing, is another facet of that balancing we're currently trying to make. 
Score : 194
very nice, can not wait
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Score : 172
little offtopic, but why merkator isn't foggernaut/vigilante instead of just vigilante? It wouldn't change gameplay (at least now), but maybe it would make some players more intrested in lore of that character or who foggernauts are...
1 0
Score : 159
All I can say is, RIP vigilante decks.
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Score : 205
Really amazing changes! I think this will finally bring a lot of deck diversity to the game, as opposed to decks being 90% the same by gods, with a few changes.

One thing I'd like to bring up is the "Adjacent" clause. One good example, Miranda and Nomekop Wodly. Miranda can take control of enemies all around her, including diagonal from her (adjacent). However, Nomekop Wodly cannot summon any Bow Meows except for directly by him. This means he does not include diagonal from him. Two cards with a similar reading and wording, but very different areas of their effect.

Anyway this can be looked into and possibly clarified somehow?
0 0
I'll forward this to the team. Maybe we can find a clearer wording. 
Score : 1
I just want to say :we need create Chinese language in this greatest card game of the world!And also we can pay on mobile-client that will make it much essier for us!
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Score : 35
Que bien, y no me afecta en nada ya que uso 100% deck sacro con katar y kriss únicamente, será interesante ver más variedad de deck. +1
0 0
Score : 314
Maybe some of the Multiman could decrease in rarity so that Vigilante decks are not too hindered by the Krosmic limitation rule? It would even make more sense in lore terms considering Multiman can be in more than one place at once
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I'll forward your concerns. 
Score : 99
With all these changes I am concerned about the steam achievement "Supreme", wanting you to win 20 consecutive games. I have not achieved this and a shifting meta would perhaps cause this to be a very luck based over skill based accomplishment. Is it possible to remove or rework it into something more viable? Thanks, enjoying the game since release smile
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I don't think we expect to change that achievement. What could we change it to, anyway? 
Score : 20
Great changes, good to see you're working on tuning down some of the cards, Decepticod is a card that always has a space in my decks, he's just so powerful you can't pass up.

I hope you guys also give some attention to draft mode, any ideas on incorporating each expansion pack to the rewards ?
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Score : 68
I have a question to the Devs in light of the upcoming changes. I find this issue very important, but when I submitted a ticket about it I did not find the reaction I was hoping for. I am a new player, but I do have experience with other card games, hence I know how important this is to have correct card descriptions, which properly describe the card mechanic. I have confirmed though, that pretty much all minions with COUNTERATAK  execute their abilities not only when counterataking, but UPON TAKING DAMAGE from any source. I find this very misleading, as in my opinion counterataking is when a minion is hit by another minion in mele  range. Being hit by ranged, spell, or minion ability is not counterataking. I have also seen some cards whcih description properly states in description: "upon sustaining damage", which is accurate in this case, and counteratak being written in bold on cards, as to describe their mechanic is mesleading, damaging the understanding of the game mechanics for newer players, and thats on top of you game being very hard for newer players due to some obvious game specialities introduced. I hope posting here will actually draw some attention to this issue, as sending a ticket obviously means same thing as in pretty much any other game = dump pile.
1 0
I'll have a check to your other topic. I'd just like to point out that our Customer Support deals mostly with technical difficulties and errors, and they obviously have very little to do with how the game is worded. 
Score : 2994
Well, well, well.

They nerfed almost all the bounce an enemy cards.

That's certainly going to shake things up.

...Now I actually need to think before autoincluding major arachnee and adamai in all my decks...
1 0
Score : -6
I would assume that the bounce nerfs will have a greater effect against agressive decks than defensive decks. I am kinda sad that Zalidar got nerfed i liked making him an 8/8 with the 6 mana fairy :-(. I guess issue was he was a very bulky minion in addition to have a really powerful effect.
0 0
Score : 157
wow, for all the cards that got changed, only 3 cards i regularly use got effected, for a sec there i thought i had to scrap my whole deck when the patch came out!
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