In anticipation of the upcoming August update, we’d like to take the opportunity to outline a few rule changes and a cost adjustment planned to be implemented in the update.
1. The player that goes second will draw two cards instead of one on the first turn.
2. The Forestcraft amulet Harvest Festival will cost 4 play points instead of 2.
3. Harvest Festival will yield 200 vials when liquefied for a limited period of time.
1. Rule Change
In order to improve the gaming experience, our team has been hard at work analyzing the results of our players’ battles. Whenever points of improvement are identified, our approach is to consider tweaking game rules and/or card stats.
The results of our analysis revealed that players who go first in battle have a higher chance of winning. After analyzing approximately 3,500,000 ranked matches between players with the rank A or higher, we found that 60% of winners were players who went first regardless of class. The same tendency was also evident from matches between players with the rank B or below.
In order to balance the game, we’ve decided to give the player going second an extra card on their first turn.
Plays made during the first 3 turns often greatly impact the outcome of a match, yet the player who goes second is especially burdened. The player must survive through the first player’s assault until they can evolve their followers on the fourth turn. If, by a stroke of bad luck, the player is stuck with a bunch of high-cost cards at the outset of a match, chances for a win are slim.
Conversely, the result of a match often depends on the number of effective cards held by the players in the late game.
We believe that being able to draw two cards on the first turn will benefit the players going second especially in situations like above and will even out the winning rate of the players in a single match.
Moving forward, we will continue to analyze play data and take steps to address balance issues whenever they arise.
2. Cost Adjustment
Based on the above rule change, we’ve investigated how certain cards and decks will be affected. We found that decks that rely on a few special cards and a large number of cards in hand become more powerful than anticipated.
As of July 2016, Forestcraft decks that use Path to Purgatory are very popular. These decks focus on increasing the number of cards in your hand by generating multiple Fairies. In addition, by playing Altered Fate you can discard your hand and replace each card while also increasing your shadows. Then as you trip up your opponent by removing enemy followers, eventually you’ll accumulate 30 shadows which will allow you to unleash Path to Purgatory and win the match.
We decided a card change is necessary in order to prevent these decks from becoming significantly dominant in the current metagame. Harvest Festival is a key card in these decks and likely to cause the most problems. By playing this card, you can draw an extra card almost every turn. When combined with Altered Fate and Path to Purgatory, the deck becomes overly powerful. Additionally, by being able to continuously draw and play cards such as Fairies and Rhinoceroaches, it’s easy to defeat your opponent without even relying on particularly strong combo tactics.
There will be an increased chance to play Harvest Festival early-on for the player going second with the aforementioned rule change that lets them draw two cards on the first turn. This will allow them to have more resources to trigger Harvest Festival’s ability making the already overpowered Forestcraft decks even more powerful.
Relative to its powerful effect, Harvest Festival costs too little. Therefore we are going to change its cost from 2 play points to 4.
3. Temporary Vial Bonus
We will compensate for the above change by increasing the number of vials you receive after liquefying Harvest Festival. Vials obtained from liquefying Harvest Festival will be increased from 50 to 200 for a normal copy and 120 to 200 for an animated one.
You need 200 vials to create one copy of a Silver card. This compensation is aimed at users who created Harvest Festival but would like to exchange it with another card due to the upcoming adjustments.
This compensation will be available for approximately one month. After this period the number of vials received will revert to normal. We will follow up with more details about this period in the future.
4. Future Plans
In addition to the updates detailed above for August, we also have the following update planned in September or later.
The maximum number of cards that can be held in your hand will increase from 8 to 9. (This is true whether you go first or second.)
We recognize that the player who goes second may easily fill their hand after the new rule of drawing two cards on the first turn is implemented. (Once your hand is full, the next card you draw will be turned into a shadow.)
For reasons mentioned above, we hope to implement this change in order to minimize the chances for unbalanced gameplay. We kindly ask for your understanding and cooperation during the period between updates.
The Shadowverse Team will continue to analyze users’ gameplay data in order to ensure balanced gameplay and we will adjust card abilities when necessary. In such cases, users will be notified in advance and compensated with vials after liquefying a card.
We appreciate your understanding and thank you for your continued support!