It’s been nearly a year since the first large wave of armor adjustments came into the Nexus. This changed affected nearly every Warrior Tank Hero in the game. It was all in an effort to smooth out the damage curve that was being seen in fights at the time. And it was a remarkable success. Too much so in fact. With the damage spikes calming down on tanks, healers found that they could keep those front-line defenders up a lot longer. This eventually snowballed into what Blizzard itself has described as our current meta:
Most team compositions right now are setup as the following:
- A tank for your primary front line
- A bruiser or second Warrior as a secondary front line
- A healer to keep your team alive
- This leaves 2 spots on a team, and with one of those commonly being occupied by another healer or Support, it means we only see one Assassin. This also forces Assassin picks to be into a smaller subset of ‘hyper carries’ such as Valla or Greymane. While these characters are cool, we really want to create some space for Mages and other characters to shine as well.
That sucks. Right? I’m sure you’ve all been on the receiving end of this. What it amounts to is a team with a ton of sustain where you never really end up killing anyone. That’s boring and frustrating all in one neat little package. So what are we going to do about it? Blizzard is currently working on it with this suggestion:
Here is a general list of changes we’re making to Support Heroes:
- Weaken wave clear
- Decrease Damage by 5%
- Decrease Healing by 5%
- Decrease Health by 5%
(Above quote was edited.)
That is a S*** TON of changes! It might not seem like a lot, but 5% here and 5% there can collectively add up to drastic changes in how we play Heroes.
So let’s dial it back. This all happened for a reason which originated with Armor. So what is Armor? Well, for one last time I’m going to take Blizzard’s description because they do it so very, very well.
How does Armor work?
- Armor is split into three types: Armor, Physical Armor, and Spell Armor. Armor by itself means that you gain mitigation from both Physical and Spell damage. Physical and Spell Armor mitigate damage from their respective key words. Currently, all abilities deal Spell Damage while all Basic Attacks deal Physical Damage (with slight exceptions like the talent Cannoneer, which turns Li Ming’s next Basic Attack into Spell Damage). For reference, floating damage text will display Spell Damage as purple numbers above the target’s head, while Physical Damage will display as orange.
Did you all know that? I mean, really? Because I’ll be honest, for awhile I thought there were only two types: Armor and Spell Armor. That sort of mistake influenced my talent picks until I was finally corrected. I’ll wager that if you ask a friend or two who plays Heroes, one of them is bound to get it wrong. I don’t blame them!
Armor is currently super critical to how we play Heroes. Both additional and negative armor should have a greater influence on your actions in the coming weeks. With these healer nerfs now in place, you may see fewer team comps with two healers paving the way to actually kill something. So do what you can to survive! Play smart, be polite and work as a team. You’re going to need to be a bit smarter if you expect to live. If all else fails, roll a tank. That’s what I do.