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Hearthstone Patch 21.0.3 Downgrades 8 Standard Cards, Swaps 5 Battleground Heroes – Video Game News




From Hearthstone new expansion, United in Stormwind, you are receiving your first balance update via patch 21.0.3.

The next patch, officially released tomorrow, will bring a wide range of nerfs to the cards in Standard. It will also buff a lot of underperforming heroes in Battlegrounds mode.

Here are all the changes and everything you need to know about patch 21.0.3.

Standard updates

  • Incanter flow
    • Old: [Costs 2] → New: [Costs 3]
  • Il’gynoth
    • Old: [Costs 4] 2 Attack, 6 Health → New: [Costs 6] 4 Attack, 8 Health
  • Battlefield Battlemaster
    • Old: [Costs 5] → New: [Costs 6]
  • Kolkar Pack Runner
    • Old: [Costs 2] 2 Attack, 3 Health → New: [Costs 3] 3 Attack, 4 Health
  • Forgeborn granite
    • Old: 4 Attack, 5 Health → New: 4 Attack, 4 Health
  • Conviction (rank 1) (and each of its three ranks)
    • Old: [Costs 1] → New: [Costs 2]
  • Meat giant
    • Old: [Costs 8] → New: [Costs 9]

All cards listed here are eligible for full powder refunds for two weeks after patch 21.0.3 goes live.

Standard meta implications

Since seven of the eight nerfs are mana boosts, these changes will have a tremendous impact on all higher-tier decks that dictate the standard meta right now. Because both checklists and aggro have their key cards increased in mana costs, the game will slow down by a considerable margin, allowing a slower meta to form.

While Shaman did give his Granite Forgeborn a slight health nerf, there’s a chance the class will still be a potent force in the meta.

Battleground updates

Returning hero

Image via Blizzard Entertainment
  • Shudderwock
    • Old: Bubbling [Costs 1] Your next Battlecry this turn triggers twice. → New: Snack [Costs 0] Add a 1/1 chill to your hand that repeats all the battle cries you’ve ever played. (Twice per game).

Hero updates

  • Dancin ‘Daryl
    • Tric hatk
      • Old: [Passive] After selling a minion, randomly give a minion in Bob’s Tavern + 1 / + 1 twice. → New: [Passive] After selling a minion, randomly give a minion in Bob’s Tavern + 1 / + 1 three times.
  • Fungalmancer Flurgl
    • I went fishing
      • Old: [Passive] After selling a murloc, add a random murloc to Bob’s Tavern. → New: [Passive] After selling a minion, add a random murloc to Bob’s Tavern.
  • Maiev Shadowsong
    • Imprison
      • Old: [Costs 1] Create a minion in Bob’s Tavern Dormant. After 3 turns, get it with + 1 / + 1. → New: [Costs 1] Create a minion in Bob’s Tavern Dormant. After 3 turns, get it with + 2 / + 2.
  • Malygos
    • Arcane alteration
      • Old: [Costs 0] Replace a minion with a random one of the same tavern level. → New: [Costs 0] Replace a minion with a random one of the same tavern level. (Twice per shift).

Battleground meta implications

A reworked Shudderwock effectively adds an exciting new hero to the pool. Since you can replay your Battle Shouts twice with two free Shudderlings, you can use them for early game tempo or keep them for late game value.




If you manage to find symbolic units like the Alleycat or Murloc Tide Hunter, they can grant you quick access to guaranteed triples that can snowball the game at a rapid pace compared to other heroes. For the late game, powerful abilities like Menagerie Jug, Strongshell Scavenger, and Primalfin Lookout can ensure a healthy lead after you’ve hit your first 3s.

Since you can only use Shudderwock’s hero power twice in a game, you won’t find a Shudderling triple outside of your opponent’s Rafaam and Murozond antics.

The other four changes coming to the battlefields will enhance heroes who have historically fought or couldn’t find a balance in the meta after receiving previous nerfs.

Fungalmancer Flurgl is a tribe-specific hero who could often roll a lobby and get first place or fail and finish last if you couldn’t find murlocs. Now that Gone Fishing triggers on any sold minions, the consistency of Fungalmancer Flurgal will give you a better chance of finding less polarized locations.

Maiev Shadowsong was one of the strongest Battlegrounds heroes in the game when she first entered game mode, even after receiving multiple changes designed to weaken her. It was only after her most recent nerf, which caused a minion to remain inactive for three turns instead of two, that it finally made her more vulnerable and relegated her to the lower tiers.

Now that the target minion with his Imprisoned Hero power gains + 2 / + 2, he can make up for some lost time while trying to catch more triples.

Malygos was always a skill tests hero due to the amount of knowledge you needed to understand which tavern level to repeat. While it took a great deal of skill to succeed, Malygos’ hero power was still incredibly dependent on luck and inconsistent compared to other top tier characters.

Now that Arcane Alteration can be used twice in a turn, you can spend time in the first few Taverns trying to find efficient economic units and tokens and improve your chances of finding a triple.

Sand balance update

“We’ve updated the card spawn rate to ensure class balance remains near the ideal 50 percent win rate,” said Blizzard. “Specifically, the Druid, Warrior, and Demon Hunter win rate should now be lowered. Mage, Priest, Rogue, and Shaman win rate should now increase. The rate of profit of the other classes should be approximately the same as before «.

Bug fixes and game improvements.

  • Updated the soul stealer animation to now only trigger if the card ends up in your hand (does not trigger for cards that are cast when drawn, such as soul shards). The animation will also not trigger if the drawn card already costs health instead of mana (like when you have two soul stealers in play).
  • Fixed card text errors for Psyfiend and Florist (no functional changes to either).
  • Fixed a bug where the Prismatic Jewel Kit would trigger when the effects returned a Divine Shield minion to the owner’s hand or moved a Divine Shield minion from the owner’s hand to the owner’s deck.
  • Fixed a bug where Seeking Guidance (the priest’s quest line) would sometimes count the original cost of the cards, rather than the cost actually paid for the card.
  • Fixed a bug where the Eye Beam Starter Set version would not correctly display card art in the Collection Manager.
  • Fixed a bug where Reborn Rites, the Lich King’s Battlegrounds Hero Power, would cause players to disconnect from the game server.
  • Interactions between Pave the Way (part of Paladin Questline) and Duels-specific hero powers have been added.
  • Fixed various bugs in Book of Heroes Gul’dan and Book of Heroes Illidan.
  • Fixed a bug where Duel achievements were not tracking correctly.
  • Fixed a bug where the Witchwood Collection achievements were activated even though the requirements were not yet met.
  • (Updated) Fixed a bug where completing all Book of Hero deliveries would not display the proper achievement or award the proper prize. All players who have already completed all 10 Hero Books will automatically receive the corresponding prize from a Golden Standard pack at a later date.

You can try out the new Battlegrounds hero and Duels meta tomorrow when Hearthstone Release of patch 21.0.3.


Hasan Sheikh
Hasan, who loves technology and games, is studying Computer Engineering at Delhi JNU. He has been writing technology news since 2016.
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