Dec 21, 2016

Latest balance update nerfs Ragnaros and Diablo while Buffing Dehaka.

Ragnaros and Diablo were extremely strong picks since the last past, so much so that Blizzard decided to take action. Was Diablo's improve tankiness and Lava wave really in need of changes?

The latest patch has been a whirlwind of meta changes. As we live in fear of Bloodlust, Lava Waves and Artanis swaps that seem to defy everything we once knew about the game, Blizzard is hard at work deciphering what the real culprits to game imbalance is.

And, as it turns out, Bloodlust seems to be in an a-ok spot with Blizzard developers, as it has puzzlingly dodged the banner hammer this time around. In it's place, the follow major changes have been made:

Haunted Mines

  • Grave Golems:

    • Summoned Grave Golem Attack Damage increased from 110 to 140 *

    • Summoned Grave Golem Stomp Damage increased from 60 to 150 


This change is obvious and self-explanatory. The Golems on the new (and very much improved) Haunted Mines were far too weak and didn't seem like proper battleground objectives that mattered. This fix goes a long way to changing that


  • Empower Sulfuras (Q)

    • Damage reduced from 222 to 211

  • Living Meteor (W)

    • Damage reduced from 75 to 72

  • Molten Core (Trait)

    • Cooldown increased from 100 to 120 seconds

    • Molten Swing damage reduced from 169 to 161

    • Meteor Shower damage reduced from 159 to 151

    • Explosive Rune damage reduced from 300 to 285

  • Lava Wave (R)

    • Cooldown increased from 100 to 120 seconds

    • Damage reduced from 86 to 60


  • Level 1

    • Shifting Meteor (W)

      • Quest requirement increased from 50 to 75 Heroic target hits *


The changes are slight but the intent was clear: Ragnaros was too strong. His Trait and Lava Wave were putting him well above the 50% winrate that Blizzard aims for all heroes, so as a result they were nerfed across the board. Less damage, higher cooldown-- the works.

However, many suspect these changes still won't change the power level of Ragnaros. Lava wave and Molten Core were never really used on cooldown, so the extra time between uses seems negligible. The Heroic Difficult talent still does massive damage with Sulfuras Smash and many experience players argue that Lava Wave was the worse of the two heroics anyways.



  • Base Maximum Health reduced from 2647 to 2567

  • Health Regen reduced from 5.52 to 5.35



  • Level 1

    • Bulwark (Q)

      • Duration increase on Shadow Charge's Resistance decreased from 3 to 2 seconds

  • Level 7

    • Soul Shield (Passive)

      • Ability damage reduction per Soul reduced from .35 to .25%

  • Level 20

    • Hellgate (Active)

      • Cooldown increased from 70 to 90 seconds


Blizzards justification for these Diablo nerfs are as follows:

[redquote1]It's been nice to see the positive reactions to the Lord of Terror's recent changes. That said, the latest rework gave him some new survivability talents that are slightly over-performing. The new stacking Resistant system is making the interaction between Shadow Charge, Bulwark and Soul Shield a bit too strong, so we are making some adjustments to compensate.

Personally? I don't buy it. Diablo hasn't been a top tier hero forever and his playstyle is fun and aggressive. We have had the same tier 1 Warriors for ages now, and I fully embrace a world in where Diablo is a first pick hero.

But, perhaps my love for Diablo is overshadowing my judgement. These nerfs aren't huge, but make it harder for Diablo to fit into the solo-tank role he has recently enjoyed.



  • Level 1

    • Enhanced Agility (Trait)

      • Increased Quest reward per 50 Essence Stacks from 1 to 1.5% Movement Speed

It's a small change, but an important one. Before this, Enhanced Agility was a trap talent that should never be chosen. Now, with the ability for Dehaka to reach mount speed once fully stacked (and with his new movement speed passive in brushes) there is at least a compelling argument for choosing this over some of this more popular tier 1 talents.


Read the full patch notes here

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Are the Diablo and Ragnaros nerfs necessary?

Yes, they were simply too strong.

Thank you for voting!

No, I prefer new top-tier heroes for once.

Thank you for voting!

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