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Hearthstone 17.6 update nerfs Galakrond Rogue and Demon Hunter

A fresh round of balance changes will hit Hearthstone with next week's 17.6 update and it will likely make Galakrond Rogue and aggro Demon Hunter players cry just a bit.

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It's a harsh lesson to learn over and over again, but nothing in life is free. And for Hearthstone players getting powerful cards for free, their day is coming. Blizzard is closing some of its charity avenues with next week's 17.6 update, impacting Galakrond Rogue decks heavily. And those who thought the Demon Hunter nerfs were finished, I'm afraid I have some bad news.

The following balance changes will be implemented on Tuesday, July 14, according to the Hearthstone website:

  • Dragonqueen Alexstrasza (Neutral): Now reads "Battlecry: If your deck has no duplicates, add 2 other random Dragons to your hand. They cost (1)." (Changed from "Battlecry: If your deck has no duplicates, add 2 other random Dragons to your hand. They cost (0).")
  • Corsair Cache (Warrior): Draws a weapon and gives it +1 Durability. (Changed from drawing a weapon and giving it +1/+1)
  • Metamorphosis (Demon Hunter): Swap your Hero Power to "Deal 4 damage." After 2 uses, swap it back. (Down from dealing 5 damage.)
  • Kayn Sunfury (Demon Hunter): Now has 3/4 stats (Down from 3/5 stats)
  • Warglaives of Azzinoth (Demon Hunter): Costs 6 mana (Up from 5 mana)
  • Dragoncaster (Mage): Costs 7 mana (Up from 6 mana)
  • Fungal Fortunes (Druid): Costs 3 mana (Up from 2 mana)
  • Galakrond, the Nightmare/Galakrond, the Apocalypse/Galakrond, Azeroth's End (Rogue): Any cards drawn now cost 1 mana. (Up from 0 mana.)

Galakrond Rogue decks used to cruise by with all sorts of free cards. The Highlander build would run with Dragonqueen Alexstrasza and get free dragons. And Galakrond himself would grant the Rogue multiple free cards. Those cards are no longer free and will now cost (1) mana, which should disrupt those decks significantly. It should be noted that Rogue players can still pull some free cards with the aid of Heistbaron Togwaggle, so all is not lost for them.

Demon Hunters have only been around for a few months, but they've been the target of nerfs not once, but twice. And the first round of nerfs literally came the day after the class was released. This round of nerfs is focused on the Warglaives of Azzinoth, which have become a powerful weapon in the late game, working in conjunction with many of the Demon Hunter's cheap spells. While Kayn Sunfury's effect makes it one of the better Demon Hunter minions in the game, its health also made it a strong tempo play on Turn 4, so its health reduction fixes the latter point. And then there's Metamorphosis, which has become a reliable finishing play for the Demon Hunter. This pulls its punch back slightly, giving the opposing player more of a fighting chance.

These changes won't kick in until this Tuesday, so get these last games in while you can. The Galakrond Rogue and aggro Demon Hunter decks (as well as the Highlander Mage and Spell Druid decks) are getting hit hard with these balance changes. If there are any further changes, Shacknews will be here to bring them to you, so stay tuned.

Senior Editor

Ozzie has been playing video games since picking up his first NES controller at age 5. He has been into games ever since, only briefly stepping away during his college years. But he was pulled back in after spending years in QA circles for both THQ and Activision, mostly spending time helping to push forward the Guitar Hero series at its peak. Ozzie has become a big fan of platformers, puzzle games, shooters, and RPGs, just to name a few genres, but he’s also a huge sucker for anything with a good, compelling narrative behind it. Because what are video games if you can't enjoy a good story with a fresh Cherry Coke?

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