Hearthstone is finally nerfing Patches the Pirate as part of a major balance update

Some will no doubt says that it's been too long coming, but Blizzard announced today that four of the most obnoxious Hearthstone cards are set to be nerfed in the upcoming Update 10.2, which will go live next month. Leading the pack is the highly contentious Patches the Pirate, which after the update will no longer hit with Charge. 

"As we move closer to the new Hearthstone Year, we had some concerns about allowing Patches to remain in his current state after moving out of Standard," read the developer notes. "Patches’ strength has caused almost every class to add some Pirates just to benefit from him, and his early game power forces control decks to include a good answer to him. This change should give Wild players more flexibility when building their decks."

Next up is Raza the Chained, one of the key pieces, along with Shadowreaper Anduin, to the dominant Highlander Priest deck. Raza's Battlecry will now reduce your Hero Power's cost to 1 Mana instead of making it free, which should dampen down those massive damage combos. 

"In a similar vein to Patches the Pirate, we had some concerns about allowing Raza to remain in his current state forever," Blizzard said. "Adjusting his Battlecry will lower his overall power level when combined with Shadowreaper Anduin in Standard, and keep his power level reasonable in Wild as we prepare for the new Hearthstone Year."

Two powerful Neutral minions have had their power levels toned down. Corridor Creeper has become a staple in, well, almost every deck, as its cost-reducing mechanic often makes it a free 5/5 minion. Its Attack has been reduced from 5 to 2.

"By lowering its attack, we reduce the overall swing potential and power level of the card, but still allow players who draw it early to benefit from having a low-cost minion to play when the game state is ideal," Blizzard said. 

Finally, Bonemare's cost has been increased from 7 to 8 Mana.

"Bonemare has been quite strong in both constructed and Arena. It has a big, immediate impact on the board, and since it’s neutral, it’s been finding its way into a wide variety of decks," Blizzard said. "Increasing its mana cost by 1 will give opponents more time to utilize powerful late-game cards to counteract Bonemare’s effect on the board."

The big winner here is Warlock, as none of the affected cards are utilized in the powerful Cubelock deck, which uses Carnivorous Cube to bust out either a wall of Voidlords or multiple charging Doomguards. The non-Doomguard pure control Warlock deck is also positioned to become very dominant.

It's important to note that these are just balance changes, whereas it's expected that several cards will also be sent to the Hall of Fame (available only for use in Wild, not Standard) with the upcoming set rotation. This is still speculation, but giving Doomguard that treatment would certainly help with reining in Warlock's upcoming overwhelming power. 

Bo Moore

As the former head of PC Gamer's hardware coverage, Bo was in charge of helping readers better understand and use PC hardware. He also headed up the buying guides, picking the best peripherals and components to spend your hard-earned money on. He can usually be found playing Overwatch, Apex Legends, or more likely, with his cats. He is now IGN's resident tech editor and PC hardware expert.