Monday, November 7, 2022

Marvel Snap: Card Updates During Beta

For easy reference, here's a compilation of balance changes to cards in Marvel Snap since Beta through the global launch on October 18, 2022 (chronologically from top to bottom):

BALANCE UPDATES - June 29, 2022

- Colossus: [2/3] Ongoing: Can't be destroyed, moved, or have its power reduced.

Developer Comment: Colossus could use a little help, and we wanted to match the theme of "you can't do anything to this card" better. This change gives him a little boost in both power and fantasy.

- Crystal: [4/4] On Reveal: If this is at the middle location, shuffle your hand into your deck and draw 3 cards.

Developer Comment: This change gives Crystal more flexibility, in case players don't want to replace their hand.

- Destroyer: [6/16] On Reveal: Destroy your other cards.

Developer Comment: Destroyer needed a bit of help to make playing around his effect worthwhile. This bump in power should help him pull his weight!

- Devil Dinosaur: [4/0] Ongoing: +2 Power for each card in your hand.

Developer Comment: Devil Dino was way too powerful for its cost. Typically, you can expect around a 6-Power Devil Dinosaur without extra investment, which lands the card at roughly 4-Cost worth of Power. Once you start investing in its effect, its power shoots way, way beyond what a 3-Cost card should achieve with how easily cards like Sentinel and Moon Girl compliment the Dino. We've decided to bump Devil Dino's cost to bring it more in line with the cost to power ratio we expect for cards.

- Doctor Strange: [3/3] On Reveal: Move your highest Power cards to this location.

Developer Comment: Along with Kraven, Doctor Strange needed some love to strengthen Move decks. This buff along with bug fixes should help keep the "Supreme" in Sorcerer Supreme.

- Kraven: [2/2] When a card moves here, this gets +2 Power.

Developer Comment: Kraven is one of the weakest cards in the game. We're giving him a boost in both power and activation flexibility to make him feel more impactful.

- Moon Girl: [4/4] On Reveal: Duplicate your hand.

Developer Comment: Moon Girl proved to be a powerful combo piece to enable low Cost card combos. We are nerfing her to both nerf the strategies that she primarily interacts with, like The Collector, and also to mitigate future scenarios with her enabling unintended low Cost Card combos.

- Nova: [1/2] When this is destroyed, give your cards +1 Power.

Developer Comment: After looking at card performance, we have identified Nova as a very clear outlier. We believe the change from +2 Power to +1 Power, brings this card more in-line with other deck strategies.

- Okoye: [1/1] On Reveal: Give every card in your deck +1 Power.

Developer Comment: Okoye’s current tuning can make game outcomes feel too centered around playing her on turn 2. As we're also looking to increase the pool of 1-Cost cards in the game, Okoye looked to be a perfect candidate to adjust.

- White Queen: [4/6] On Reveal: Draw a copy of the highest Cost card in your opponent's hand.

Developer Comment: Oftentimes, White Queen felt like a 4/6 On Reveal: Say "No 6-Cost in hand". This should help her consistency by having her always draw you a card.

BALANCE UPDATES - July 19, 2022

- America Chavez: [6/10] -> [6/9]

Developer Comment: America Chavez sees a very high amount of play in various deck archetypes right now. We are nerfing her Power down to make other options more enticing.

- Crossbones: [4/8] You can only play this at locations where you are winning.

Developer Comment: This is mostly a wording change. It only really affects Crossbones’s interaction with Bar With No Name. We think this new text will make the card clearer and easier to understand quickly.

- Ebony Maw: [1/6] -> [1/7]

Developer Comment: We are giving Ebony Maw a bit more Power to make playing around his heavy limitations more rewarding.

- Ghost Rider: [3/3] -> [4/3]

Developer Comment: Ghost Rider will often be an outlier in Power due to the amount of Power he can 'cheat' out. We are nerfing his Cost to make his resurrection come at a higher price.

- Ka-Zar: [4/5] -> [4/4]

Developer Comment: Ka-Zar tends to give a bit too much Power right now, so we are taking his base Power down a notch.

- Okoye: [1/1] -> [2/2]

Developer Comment: Okoye as a 1-Cost proved to be too powerful as an opener, so we are nerfing her to a 2-Cost and giving her a little extra Power.

- Scarlet Witch: [1/2] -> [2/3]

Developer Comment: Scarlet Witch is a bit too good at working around location selections right now. We are making her Power a bit more costly to preserve the stability of our locations from her reality warping.

- Scorpion: [3/3] -> [2/2]

Developer Comment: Scorpion is a rather weak card right now. With this change, players should have much more freedom in how they utilize him.

- Strong Guy: [2/3] -> [4/4]

Developer Comment: Strong Guy was a very clear outlier in his power as a 2-Cost card. We also want him to be more of a build-around card to provide an "empty hand" avenue in the discard archetype, so we are increasing his Cost and giving him a small Power boost to compensate.

- Jubilee: (OLD: On Reveal: Play the top card of your deck to this location.) NEW - On Reveal: Play a card from your deck to this location.

Developer Comment: Jubilee’s previous functionality had some unintended interactions with America Chavez, causing her to frequently pull Chavez, creating a near-guarantee “4 energy for 11 Power” play, which was not desired nor intended.

- Hulkbuster: Hulkbuster now no longer grants his Cost to the attached card

Developer Comment: Hulkbuster affecting Cost turned out to be largely unexpected by players. After further consideration, we believe this update will create more interesting and exciting gameplay and deck building experiences for players.

- Killmonger and Sandman: Available earlier on the Collection Level Road

Developer Comment: We like to make sure players have tools to counter major strategies before they get too deep in the Collection Level Road. We hope that moving these cards earlier in the collection level road will give players more options to deal with low-cost go-wide decks in the earlier stages of collection. If you’re already deep in the road and haven’t found these cards, your next 2 cards will be Killmonger and Sandman.

BALANCE UPDATES - August 9, 2022

- Collector: (OLD - 2/0 When a card enters your hand from anywhere (except your deck), +2 Power.) NEW - 2/1 When a card enters your hand from anywhere (except your deck), +1 Power.

Developer Comment: The Collector's ability to gain power rapidly in many decks is a bit too out of control, especially at his Cost. We are reining him in with an adjustment to his Power gain potential.

- Colleen Wing: [3/5] -> [2/4]

Developer Comment: Colleen Wing has been buffed to maintain the Energy curve of discard cards with Hellcow now at 4 Energy.

- Hellcow: [2/6] -> [4/6]

Developer Comment: Hellcow is clearly a very strong card, so as we considered what direction to take her change we decided to adjust the curve of discard effects and how we cost them. Discarding two is now clearly a beneficial effect, so we have moved Hellcow's "discard multiple" effect up to 4-Cost to nerf her. We are also subsequently buffing Sword Master and Colleen Wing to 3-Cost and 2-Cost respectively to maintain our curve of discard cards and help the two out.

- Kingpin: (OLD - On Reveal: Next turn, destroy cards that move here.) NEW - When a card moves here on turn 6, destroy it.

Developer Comment: We believe that this update to Kingpin will make his functionality more clear, and give players more flexibility in when to play him to capitalize on his payoff.

- Lizard: [2/4] -> [2/5]

Developer Comment: Lizard's performance was extremely weak, so we are giving him an extra power to help him out.

- Nakia: (OLD - On Reveal: Give all cards in your hand +2 Power.) NEW - On Reveal: Give 2 cards in your hand +2 Power

Developer Comment: Nakia had the potential to give massive amounts of power that players could reliably play out by using low Cost cards. We are nerfing the number of cards she will buff in order to keep this ability in check.

- Rescue: (OLD - 5/5 On Reveal: If you play a card here next turn, +5 Power.) NEW - 4/4 On Reveal: If you play a card here next turn, +5 Power.

Developer Comment: Rescue's performance is very weak right now, so we are adjusting her down to 4 Cost and 4 base Power to make her more competitive.

- Sword Master:  [4/7] -> [3/6]

Developer Comment: Sword Master has been buffed to maintain the Energy curve of discard cards with Hellcow now at 4 Energy.

BALANCE UPDATES - September 20, 2022

- Arnim Zola: No longer adds copies of a card if his target was not destroyed.

- Baron Mordo: [2/3] On Reveal: Your opponent draws a card. Set its Cost to 6.

Developer Comment: Baron Mordo's Cost increase tends to be very inconsequential in practice. We're bumping his effect's Cost markup to make it more impactful.

- Jessica Jones: [4/4] On Reveal: If you don't play a card here next turn, +4 Power.

Developer Comment: Jessica Jones’ effect is one that was a bit too stifling to be reliant on turn 6. So we’re looking at a change similar to Rescue, where moving her to be a 4-Cost card will allow her effect to see more play.

- Lady Sif: [2/4] -> [3/4]

Developer Comment: Lady Sif's effect in combination with many other cards is very strong, especially on a 2-Cost card with high power, so we're moving her up to 3-Cost.

- Mister Negative: [4/4] -> [4/1]

Developer Comment: The Mister Negative deck is very strong, and tends to have an unhealthy play pattern of skipping your first few turns. We are taking Mister Negative's Power down to tone the deck down. While this may seem like a big change, the power of the deck is largely in the cards hit by Mister Negative so we don't foresee this being a massive hit to the deck's overall power.

- Professor X: Ongoing: Lock down this location. (Cards can't be added, removed, etc.)

Developer Comment: We’re making Professor X’s text more general, as the expectation for his effect tends to be more aligned with “This location is locked and nothing can happen” rather than “Only these effects in the parentheses are disabled”. Along with this change, Professor X will now prevent cards from switching ownership, like Hobgoblin.

- Spider-Man: [4/2] -> [4/3]

Developer Comment: Spider-Man is a bit weak right now, so we're giving him an extra Power to help him out.

- Thor: [4/6] -> [3/4]

Developer Comment: Reducing Thor’s Cost should give players more flexibility when playing the card, and also allow more time to draw Mjolnir.


- Abomination: [5/8] -> [5/9]

- Aero: [5/6] -> [5/8]

- Black Bolt: [5/7] -> [5/8]

- Blue Marvel: [6/4] -> [5/3]

- Devil Dinosaur: [4/0] -> [5/3]

- Gamora: [5/7] On Reveal: If your opponent played a card here this turn, +5 Power.

- Klaw: [5/4] Ongoing: The location to the right has +6 Power.

- Red Skull: [5/14] -> [5/15]

- Ronan: [5/0] Ongoing: +3 Power for each card in your opponent's hand.

- Spider-Woman: [4/4] -> [5/7]


- Agatha Harkness: [6/13] -> [6/14]

- Hulk: [6/11] -> [6/12]

- Onslaught: [6/6] -> [6/7]

- Spectrum: [6/4] -> [6/5]

- Ultron: [6/8] On Reveal: Create four 1-Power Drones at each other location.

Developer Comment: Many of our 5 and 6-Cost cards don't quite live up to their lofty Energy Costs. We'd also like to give our 5-Cost cards some more identity, as many of them at the moment have rather simplistic effects compared to many of the other cards in Snap. We're making a suite of balance changes targeted at the 5 and 6 Cost range to help some cards that are underperforming, and provide some more interesting options at 5 Cost.

BALANCE UPDATES - October 4, 2022

- Bishop: [3/2] -> [3/1]

Developer Comment: Bishop sees a lot of play in a variety of decks as a strong generalist card. We're hoping that, by nerfing him a bit, other options will be more appealing for players to explore.

- Magik: [5/3] You can't play this on turn 6. On Reveal: Change this location to Limbo.

Developer Comment: Playing Magik to unexpectedly extend the game on the final turn is a very powerful and game-warping effect, so we are adding this restriction to her in order to tone her down.

- Mister Negative: [4/1] -> [4/-1]

Developer Comment: We believe the Magik change will have a big impact on Mr. Negative, but we are also taking a bit more power away from him.

- Nakia: [3/1] On Reveal: Give the 2 leftmost cards in your hand +2 Power.

Developer Comment: Nakia's ability often feels too random to play around effectively. We're having her buff the two leftmost cards in your hand so players can better plan their play around her.

- Ronan: [5/3] Ongoing: +2 Power for each card in your opponent's hand.

Developer Comment: Ronan's ability is very powerful at higher values, so we are reeling his cap in a bit to prevent him from getting out of control.

- Goose: [2/2] Ongoing: Nobody can play 4, 5, or 6-Cost cards at this location.

Developer Comment: We have a number of updates to abilities that enact play restrictions to make them check the adjusted Cost of cards in hand rather than their original, base Cost. Now, for example, if your Sentinel costs 4 due to Wave, you can play it at a location with Goose or Crimson Cosmos.

Photo via Second Dinner.

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