The Nerf Hammer Cometh

Wed 11th Nov 2015 - 4:44am Heroes of the Storm

He has reigned over the Nexus since it’s creation. Attempts have been made to unseat him from his throne, but he has always survived and always remained. He is Uther, king of the Supports, and Blizzard is trying to take him down. During the Heroes of the Storm State of the Game at Blizzcon, it was revealed that Uther has a 50% win rate across all skill levels and across regions. That is precisely what the balance team wants when they look at hero. Uther is seemingly perfect the way he is. Why is it that the balance team is attempting to nerf him? As most people who follow HotS as an esport know, Uther has a nearly 100% pick ban rate in competitive play. This is seemingly the only reason they’ve decided to make the change.


Uther’s Trait, Eternal Devotion is getting a small nerf. When Uther dies, he’ll become an Invulnerable spirit for 8 seconds, down from 10. Also, the cooldown on Uther’s heroic ability, Divine Shield is being raised from 70 to 90 seconds. These nerfs aren’t very harsh, which is good, but will they accomplish what Blizzard intends? I don’t believe this will drop his pick/ban rate much at all.


The trouble is Divine Shield: It’s too good, and there is no way to nerf it or remove it without taking away what makes Uther a World of Warcraft paladin. I think the answer is buffing the other panic button heroics in the game.  Li Li’s Jug of 1000 cups can be interrupted. The wind-up time on Rehgar’s Ancestral Healing is too long making the ability unreliable. Kharazim’s Divine palm is simple to defeat, especially on a pro level. Ignore it and it goes away, or simply kill a squishy hero twice. Tranquility is okay, but the rest of Malfurion’s kit doesn’t deal with burst damage well. As they are, these heroics don’t compete with the instant and 100% reliable Divine Shield. The rest of the supports don’t really have panic buttons that deal with heavy damage. We’ll see what happens, but I’m pretty sure that Holy Paladin Uther will shine and brightly as ever.

Do you think Uther’s doomed? Will Other Supports come forth to take his place as top support? Let us know in the comments.




Your Comments

  • Since testing out Uther on the ptr I can say that he feels a bit more mana starved now because of scaling and how that scaling affects conjurer's pursit. And the length of the dshield cooldown has not significantly affected my experience with him. Any team with good enough communication will more than likely work around the dshield cooldown anyways. Since only being able to play the new Towers of Doom map I feel like this map has about as much team fighting as Tomb of the Spider Queen if not a bit more and the dshield cooldown is up almost every time for a map objective team fight. Knowing how and when it is acceptable to use dshield is really the key here and I think to people who don't have as much experience with Uther will still use it as more of a panic button and the cooldown may affect them more. I really don't see him dropping off in favor of Brightwing as she is more of a situational team comp dependant healer. I have a feeling we may see a resurgence of Rehgar though now that dshield has the same cooldown as ancestral healing, but I wouldn't hold my breath on that. If anything we will really just be seeing more Tass/BW/Tyrande/Morales and then Kharazim and LiLi and Malf, but Uther will still be #1 there is no doubt about that.

  • From watching BlizzCon matches, I feel that Tyrael's Sanctification can be way better than Divine Shield at pro level, and it has become a bit boring because it's too good. Hopefully Blizz will look into that as well.

  • Great read. I think you're right too. Divine shield is just the best panic button in the game. Adding 20 seconds to the timer and taking 2 seconds off his ghost form is nothing really. He'll still be the top pick support!

  • Could have lived with the 70 second cooldown on Divine Shield if it didn't grant a speed boost as well. I think these changes will do what happened to Zeratul. Can you still play Zeratul effectively? Sure, but you can't face roll lol easy with him like he used to, so he's going to probably drop off in favor of Brightwing. The next best thing to making someone invulnerable, from looking at the other supports, is to negate the reason why you'd need invulnerability in the first place with Polymorph. 

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