Mercs's stealth nerfed 340 ->170 xp/hr ["Accidentally"]

2 Hrs later edit!: The Exp halving seems to be a “bug” :face_with_raised_eyebrow:, but they’re considering removing it tomorrow! Good news at least for one Mercs pve change! Thanks for reverting it at the very least! I appreciate it!

(was almost ready to scrap the mode immediately after hundreds of hrs of grind if it was no longer rewarding)

Source

Just a small notice for anyone still left just since how easy it is to miss… Today it seems the xp gain from playing mercs was stealth nerfed by half..

The 340 xp a hr we used to get before was halved down to 170 xp a hr. About a third of ranked constructed (400 hr avg) and bgs/Casuals/Duels/Arena ( 300 hr avg)

If that’s all you need, feel free to move on! Rest below, is just my loss at why this change was even needed or hidden.

I think i could understand going 340 xp to 300 to match casual. But a whole halving, to make mercs the lowest xp mode a hr in the format bar single player content and half of casual, seemed kinda unneeded.

I think they could revert it to at least 300 xp a hr fine. I noticed less xp this morning, but didn’t think anything of it until i noticed others were saying the same too. ( https://www.reddit.com/r/hearthstone/comments/rb90qx/another_silent_game_nerf_experience_which_you_get/ )

== Examination ==
Anyone left playing mercs after all that grind, is only going to be rewarded half as much for your time playing the mode. All that sunk time grinding comps, might as well be useless if you were playing it with the assuredity the xp would still be fine. Playing mercs will leave you behind further on daily dust and xp. Making the mode less rewarding to invest in, purchase packs, or spend time on.

Even a lot of critics still wanted to see blizzard take steps to improve the format, ideas like targeted coins, to help with new mercs, or at least something for p2ps and f2ps alike to at least see duplicate protection on maxed out coins, but to date, almost nothing has been done about potentially softlockable tasks. (Varden’s 40 ice lance task, without jaina/lich king to freeze, potentially soft lockable by leveling 4-6 speed mercs out of range to avoid one shot critting the elemental under 6 speed [fighter], or being too slow (7-8+ speed) to avoid being too slow to hit before frost lance), as well as cookie’s 180 task.

This isn’t meant to be criticism, just flat out stating every nerf and buff to mercs, includes a list that quite literally… has mostly no f2p improvements outside of typo removal, next to air elemental bounty removal (task grinding), removal of pvp coins for concedes (3-> 1 kills required reduced at least), and now half exp from the mode.

So far almost all updates to mercs have been to address concerns by reducing rewards from the f2p experience, but they haven’t improved the p2p experience either. P2p find packs quickly becoming useless or redundant. There is no targeting for either f2p or p2p other than bounties that often take 10-40 minute vs 3-5. Both f2p and p2p find the mode unrewarding, with f2p finding it grindy, and p2p finding it frusterating packs are entirely untargeted, reward duped coins just as much, and the stranger change also made so mercs gear was locked too.

I don’t think mercs was ever intended to be rewarding for free or pay to play rewards. There were never exactly high expectations, but i think anyone could read the writing on the wall, huge dramatic hype, tons of hype from the heads and pre orders without gameplay just like a repeat of warcraft 3 Reforged.

Almost every person was skeptical, but we were told to give it a fair try. I dismissed it at first, but it was alright the first week, it wasn’t that much fun, but air elemental prenerf mercs one couldn’t deny, was pretty f2p friendly, then they did a bait and switch and took it away.

“Alright, well, i’ll just grind comps and try to grind the base 500 coins for a legendary anyways” i said and spent 100s of hrs grinding knowing at least the xp would be worth something and help compensate the time. It quickly becomes apparent that while you can maybe grind 500-700 of the base merc coins over hundreds of hours, you’re still a far shot from the 2700 needed to max a merc after spending 475 + 475 + 475 coins on abilities, + 425 + 425 + 425 coins on gear.

By the time you’ve done 200-500 coins of the first og legendary grinds for a malfurion/jarraxus/Lich king, the next vancleef or valleria came out and you had to scrap again.

I think we’ll all be fine. Everyone knew mercs was either a good time waster and didn’t really progress xp much. Playing it for xp was just one of the last reasons left to try the mode.

I think they could consider look into reverting the mercs nerf, or at least look back into making it match constructed for 300 xp a hr for wins at least, as nobody in mercs is hurting another person’s experience.

With mercs is less rewarding, players may likely be even more less inclined to spend real world money if at all on the mode, less likely to purchase packs or chase mercs, or spend time on the mode. It feels like they could do a major rehaul, but it feels like a marketing department designed game first (sell hype, preorders, f2p friendly experience, new busted new gacha units. Sell packs to make people buy the new shiny merc, and then half the exp in the mode a few days after, after people have already purchased content)

I mean no ill will to a company acting to make profit, but if you’re going to dramatically half the rewards for playing a game without notice after people have already done hundred hour grinds or sunk 50-100$+ preorders for some whales in it, wouldn’t a little communication a month in advance help.

I’m not asking for any compensation, i used to be a huge Blizzard fan from Starcraft, My family played warcraft 2 and 3 all with joy and with eachother next to age of empires as kids.

I used to love every blizzard product, I bought the tavern pass today for the 10-20% more exp as i figured with mercs being so life friendly with college and finals, i could justify a tavern pass purchase just since i loved the dragon hero, cosmetics, and the xp boost with the last 20$ of credit i had stored in my account.

I’ll adapt, but i do feel like while there are some parts that are good, but i am at a utter loss on the mercs xp halving. Why now? How does this help the dying mode?

I guess anyone who can read the writing on the wall and tell that mercs isn’t a game made by a Marketing department to cater to the best of player interests out of the goodness of their hearts, but monetization metrics driven?

But… Does making a mode less rewarding… really make people buy it(???)

Anyways, i guess this is the end of mercs for me, i spent hundreds of hours grinding, i was always fairly skeptical of the mode, but at least it was good exp even if the rewards and coins for the mode were stingy.

I get giving more xp than other modes bar ranked seemed odd, but couldn’t at least xp to match constructed ± The loading screens that take up 1-2 minutes per 1-2 minute battle be considered?

In a way, unless someone was averaging 10 minutes a game, even the +10% more xp a hr for a 1 minute game would be halfed by a 1-2 minute loading screen. The mode loaded very slow even vs other modes for some reason.

Anyways.

Welp, i guess there’s almost 0 reasons less reasons to play mercs other than grinding for the sake of grinding for me now. Do you guys think if you only get half the rewards for playing a mode, you’ll still continue playing it?

If you think nerfing xp a hour by half vs other modes is a great idea and great sign for merc’s future, feel free to spread your positivity for others to enjoy! We could all use some blizzard positivity today to keep discussions 50% balanced. I could use somebody to fake it for me.

Tl;dr: Blizzard stealth nerfed and halved the exp of mercs from 340 xp hr to 170 xp a hr today. A 5 minute game that would have given 30 xp before, now gives only 15 xp.

I didn’t have much expectations to start with, but i’m still surprised they’d develop a mode to basically remove all reward from playing it after 2 months after a supposed year of development this quickly.

I’m a bit concerned, at first i was excited for new modes, but could they all be pump and dump projects like mercs from now on? Bgs is free and f2p friendly, but it seems like accountants and excel spreadsheets are designing the game now, not the players.

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You lost the Tavern Pass 20% boost.

Its a 50% loss being reported though…

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Well if it’s not that and they really did nerf Mercenaries XP, it’s probably because of the AFK exploit.

I absolutely abused it for the last week or so to get to from Lvl 80 to 100 on the Reward Track before it reset.

Nah, it’s a good a guess there but i’ve double and triple checked. Every time, the xp is noticably half of what it was before. All time intervals that used to give set amounts of xp, (30 minutes for 170 xp, 10 minutes for 63 xp, etc), are all noticably half of what they were before, being 170 → 85 exp for 30 minutes vs before. As well as 63 → 31.5 xp for 10 minutes vs before

Several other players have all checked it as well, and i’ve stopwatched it as well.

At first we thought it was just us, but measuring the past 340 xp a hr rate [About 5.6 xp a minute] to the current 170 xp a rate. [About 2.8 xp a minute],

This is with the 10-20% adjusted. Even with the pass, exp is lower than before [170 xp for 30 min prenerf, no pass], vs 85 + 8 = 93 xp, postnerf, post patch.

I thought it was funky, but it wasn’t until i noticed 20 other people mentioning it on reddit that i thought to take a more serious look at it.

I was kinda lax inbetween studies so i was trying to make sure i hadn’t just lost track of time, but sure enough, every time i stopwatch it, 3 minutes, 5 minutes, 10 minutes, 30 minutes.

I’ll be honest, it’s actually kinda sneaky they did a nerf they hoped people wouldn’t notice right on launch.

I myself spent like 5 hrs afking mercs before i noticed i was only getting half as much xp as before and only got like 2.5 hrs worth of exp while i was doing my studies. I bought the pass since i figured i could get a lot out of afking mercs, but it kinda feels a bit of a burn sham spending 20$ for 20% xp to only see 50% taken away right as a pass launched so one wouldn’t make immediate progression.

I found something else to farm, but i can’t help but feel like it’s a bit of a bait and switch since i wasted so much time and i thought sharing the idea of afking it early would help others find a merit to the mode, a few weeks before zeddy even publicized it a few weeks after. ( My post on how to afk it, and the xp for wins/hrs and losses on october 19th, Mercs good afk (320-340 xp/hr pve = 10 g/hr) Preceded Zeddy’s video posted Nov 14 by almost a entire month. Though… his video was only about 3 weeks away from it getting nerfed… Even though all the modes reward xp…

(Zeddy’s Nov 14 How to afk mercs video)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=30KswXxuzVY
)

Maybe i guess blizzard didn’t mind people doing it until it was publicized by Zeddy and then quickly nerfed a few weeks later, it was afk friendly for homework and finals, but i don’t see how that was a bad thing or harmful to anyone and it hurts active players and all the gains of anyone playing mercs. Anyone who spends time on mercs will be unable to progress a meaningful amount of quests, while also having a very expensive mode that only gives them half the rewards for playing it.

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They said it’s a bug and that it’s being hotfixed.

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It’s good that they’re reversing it, but how do you accidentally half given XP?

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IDK, got to ask the team.

Oh great news! Thanks for the update on that, I’m good to hear it was a ‘accident’!, But, i won’t look a gift horse in the mouth haha. I’ll take a revert happily.

Good news then, it’s a ‘bug’, tm!, a suspicious bug, that happened right with launch, kinda stealth hidden like the Stranger nerf and pvp reward removal, but i’m just happy to at least get some reasonable casual level exp for the mode, even with the time eating loading screens that might be eating 50% of the loading time anyways haha. XD