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A few days ago the 2nd season of HoN came to an end, and a bunch of rewards have been delivered to those who achieved the most. Also, the latest patch brought a couple of much needed balance changes, like small nerfs to Nitro, Soulstealer, and the commonly banned Sir Benzington, who became quite popular after HoN 4.0.



Congratulations, enjoy your Nymphora avatar!

But I don't like that hero...

ENJOY IT, DAMN IT!!!!


In a previous article I talked about the overhaul that Frostburn brought to the game. But, alas, they also made a lot of mistakes over their time in charge, mainly in the balance department.


So let's recapitulate them, and also discuss the Season… uuhh… thing.


Talking about balance in Heroes of Newerth

can be summed up in one animated image.


LET'S BREAK STUFF FOR NO REASON!


A long time ago I talked about the amazing ability of the people at Frostburn to destroy a perfectly working game, and it seems that they never learn from their mistakes. In the past, they broke heroes like Hellbringer, Zephyr and Wildsoul, to the point they were picked almost every match and made the game predictable, boring and repetitive.

When 4.0 hit the scene, almost every hero was changed somehow, and it brought consequences. Let's remember some examples, for the sake of it - you can check a more detailed explanation of each hero in the official site.


Demented Shaman: Unbreakable became his ultimate, and also a passive effect, allowing him also to transfer it to an ally. This meant that the hero suddenly was stronger as a semi carry than as a support, since he could had an extra life and a massive attack boost all day long. Recently his numbers were lowered down a little bit, but he is still a commonly banned hero and quite probably the best support around.

Bushwack: with a tweak to his ultimate they made him possible to kill Kongor at level 6 with only Steamboots in a matter of seconds, since his debuff stacked indefinitely and each one gave him attack speed, making him like a machine gun of darts. A quick nerf that limited the amount of stacks toned him down a bit, but nowadays, if you see Bushwack missing for a minute, he's probably at a party with the gorilla.

Grinex: when 4.0 was launched, Grinex was a killing machine. Even as a suicide he could kill people with little to no effort, and a hotfix was needed to stop his killing spree across Newerth.



Klanx: probably the most controversial of all, Klanx received a massive buff: his H.A.W.K. became a permanent ability which allowed him to fly across the screen with pretty much no penalties - he could even farm the ancients with very few items and not get hit at all. Currently he is the most banned hero around, and while he is receiving little nerfs pretty much every patch, his main issue - the permanent flying - remains mostly untouched.

Draconis: by adding him a big cooldown reduction to his Draconic Defense with Staff of the Master, he became virtually an omnipresent monster of defensive strength. Not only that, but he can also fly to destroyed towers, therefore making him also a constant pushing force. And since he can jungle with ease, Draconis became one of those heroes that required a constant attention.

Sir Benzington: his ultimate became global by default, and you have to target the ground instead a hero. This made him an effective split pushing tool, and also a more fearsome team fighter. Not only that, but his nuke required less stacks, and his charge received a longer range. As I stated at the beginning, he got nerfed a little bit in the latest patch.


Nitro: her damage continues to be insane, and even when she receives tweaks every now and then, in capable hands she's just too powerful. Fortunately, it's not an easy hero to master, therefore most of the attention goes to Klanx instead, and Nitro is usually the victory tool for the most experienced players.


Bombardier: 4.0 turned his common bombs into nuclear ones. His damage went over the roof, and could take down waves of creeps with only one spell, making him not only an insane farmer but also the best mid hero to pick. He received a lot of changes lately to tone him down a little, but with such a huge array of cheap and strong spells, he still remains as an amazing force of destruction.


Of course, a lot of other heroes received changes, but right now i'm focusing in the "broken" ones. In contrast, others got forgotten into an eternal waste, like Ichor, Gravekeeper, or even Predator, who pales in comparison of other carries. As usual, the balance at Frostburn department consist in "change everything at the same time, spend the following months fixing all the mess".



Your typical Demented Shaman game at lower ranks.

Gotta love that support!


CHAMPIONS OF (THE INFLATED RANKS OF) NEWERTH


As I mentioned before, the second Season ended. Now, what the hell is that, you probably ask yourself? Well, since 4.0, this system was added in order to reward the players who went further than the rest, and also to reset the numbers every now and then, motivating the players to climb again in the ladder instead of getting stuck in a rank forever.

It kind of worked, at first, but it got ruined by a big mistake: winning streaks that allow you to climb faster the more you win. This, combined with a bunch of broken heroes, resulted in hundreds of players with inflated ranks and 100% Bombardier picks. By the time they reached Legendary and Banning Phase became a rule, they got instantly destroyed back to the bottom, producing imbalanced and boring games.

Not to mention, when the Season 1 ended, the community received a period of "preseason", in which the dev team crunched the numbers in order to improve the following one. That period, since it had no ladder to climb, divided the player base because it was unnecessary long, forcing Frostburn to change it a little bit in order to bring the players back.


Currently, the preseason is way shorter, so they do learn... sometimes.

Since right now we can only play for fun (something unacceptable in the current times), we have no choice but to wait, for the most part.

You're all welcome to share your experiences with the Season system, and with the broken heroes too - because we're all guilty of picking at least one in our games!



The wait begins...

Tags:
Heroes of Newerth   MOBA   Frostburn  

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