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Heroes of the StormFeb 21, 2018 3:23 pm CT

Heroes of the Storm patch adds Voice Chat, nerfs Maiev (again)

Although it was on the PTR a few weeks back, Voice Chat was explicitly said to be coming at a later date than the rest of that PTR patch. Turns out, that later date is today. Voice Chat has been a pretty controversial topic in the Heroes community, splitting both casual and pro players into two schools of thought.

Some are incredibly happy to have it, saying it’ll make coordination in competitive games much better, resulting in an overall more positive experience. Others — especially female and minority players — are worried that Voice Chat will only lead to increased toxicity. After all, if you’re the only person not joining Voice Chat, that could easily lead to angry teammates. But if you do join and they hear your voice, it could lead to an entirely different kind of toxicity — again, this is especially a concern for female and minority players.

Blizzard is certainly aware of concerns and has put in efforts to combat toxicity. In a separate blog post discussing Voice Chat in more depth, Blizzard talks about not only the different types of Voice Chat channels but also the abuse-report system that’s been added to help curb any possible toxicity. It’ll certainly be something to keep an eye on, as it’s one of the more controversial changes to the game in a while.

Outside of Voice Chat, we have the usual round of nerfs and buffs with today’s patch. Maiev, not surprisingly, has been nerfed even further. Meanwhile, Malthael has been adjusted to have more team-fight strength but less early-game solo-lane capability. Those are the biggest two changes, but there are a few other heroes whose changes are worth looking into. Check ’em out below:

Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment (Official Post)


Voice Communication




  • Health reduced from 2236 to 2150
  • Health Regeneration reduced from 4.66 to 4.48


  • Vault of the Wardens (Trait)
    • Cooldown increased from 8 to 9 seconds
  • Fan of Knives (Q)
    • Damage reduced from 170 to 162


  • Level 16
    • Armored Assault (Passive)
      • Damage bonus reduced from 25% to 20%
    • Vengeful Knives (E)
      • Bonus damage per Hero hit increased from 1% to 1.2%

Developer Comment: The changes we released on January 9 helped bring Maiev’s win-rate down to mortal levels, but she was still a bit too powerful, overall. Today’s changes are aimed at slightly lowering both her survivability and burst damage throughput. Our data is showing the majority of her Talents are in healthy spots, but we will keep an eye on them as players start adapting to certain playstyles.



  • Soul Rip (Q)
    • Mana cost increased from 20 to 25
    • Healing reduced from 36 to 25 per target hit
    • Healing from Heroic targets increased from 3% to 4% of the Hero’s maximum Health
  • Tormented Souls (R)
    • Cooldown reduced from 100 to 80 seconds


  • Level 4
    • Die Alone (Q)
      • Damage bonus reduced from 75% to 50%
  • Level 16
    • Soul Collector (Q)
      • Bonus range reduced from 50% to 25%

Developer Comment: Malthael was designed to be powerful in the solo lane, but his dominance in the game’s early laning phase was unrivaled. We’re reducing this by making him heal less when Soul Ripping Minions, but increasing his Hero-only healing so that he can still keep himself alive in late-game team fights. We’re also reducing the power of Die Alone and increasing his Mana tension to taper some of his early game power. By increasing Soul Rip’s Mana usage, we’re also reducing some of the power Malthael had when double-soaking lanes (especially when combined with On a Pale Horse), as he tends to use Soul Rip twice as often when doing so. The overall goal is to reduce the power of a few particularly dominating builds, while making sure that he still feels powerful past the early game.



  • Chain Lightning (Q)
    • Bounce range increased by 20%



  • Cleave (Q)
    • Damage increased from 200 to 212
  • Singularity Spike (W)
    • Damage increased from 228 to 240
  • Void Prison (R)
    • Mana cost reduced from 100 to 80
  • Might of the Nerazim (R)
    • Basic Attack damage bonus reduced from 40% to 30%

Developer Comment: These tuning changes are meant to redistribute Zeratul’s damage while also giving him a slight buff. Zeratul should now be a bit stronger during the earlier portions of the game if he takes Might of the Nerazim, but should have less opportunity cost if he chooses to take Void Prison, instead.




  • Health increased from 1900 to 2000
  • Health Regeneration increased 3.957 to 4.168
  • Basic Attack damage increased from 104 to 110


  • Raise Skeleton (Trait)
    • Skeletal Warrior Health reduced from 240 to 225
    • Skeletal Warrior damage reduced from 23 to 21
  • Bone Prison (E)
    • Cooldown reduced from 12 to 10 seconds
    • Mana cost reduced from 80 to 70


  • Level 7
    • Trag’Oul’s Essence (Trait)
      • Mana restoration per Skeletal Warrior attack reduced from 0.5% to 0.2% of Xul’s maximum Mana

Developer Comment: We like that Xul is a strong pushing Hero who has an identity as a great duo-lane soaker, but believe that his identity has been pushed too far into this role, and we would like to see him have more presence in team fights. We’re making adjustments to push him in this direction by buffing his base stats and toning down his split-push potential.




  • Light of Elune (Q)
    • Cooldown reduced from 12 to 11 seconds




  • Basic Attack damage reduced from 88 to 84


  • Level 7
    • Poisoned Spear (Q)
      • Damage reduced from 125% to 100% of Ancient Spear’s damage.
  • Level 16
    • Nerves of Steel (Active)
      • Duration reduced from 5 to 3 seconds
      • Shield amount reduced from 30% to 25% of Maximum Health
      • Cooldown reduced from 70 to 60 seconds

Developer Comment: We originally applied these adjustments in a patch on January 24, but Sonya was so eager to get back into battle that she forgot to take them with her. We’re giving these changes back to the Barbarian, and have (politely) asked her to remember to bring them along the next time she leaps into the fray.

Bug Fixes

Heroes, Abilities, and Talents

  • Diablo: Lightning Breath sound effects will no longer stop playing before the Ability is finished channeling.
  • Junkrat: Heroes killed by Concussion Mine will no longer respawn at their death location and then slide across the Battleground.
  • Junkrat: Issuing movement commands during Rocket Ride will no longer cause Junkrat to become separated from his Mount.
  • Junkrat: Movement commands that the player did not issue will no longer appear on the terrain in front of RIP-Tire’s model.
  • Junkrat: Targeting unpathable terrain with Rocket Ride will no longer cause Total Mayhem Grenades to visually persist on the Battleground.
  • Junkrat: Concussion Mine can no longer displace Leoric from Wraith Walk’s starting location if the Mine is detonated in the same moment that Wraith Walk ends.
  • Li Li: After learning the Lighting Serpent Talent, Cloud Serpent attacks that are bouncing to additional targets when the Ability expires will now correctly deal damage.
  • Lt. Morales: The tooltip for the Healing Beam icon next to Lt. Morales’ in-game portrait will now correctly display the Ability’s cooldown duration.
  • Malfurion: An ally who is affected by multiple Regrowths will now be correctly healed by Moonfire and have Stuns, Roots, and Slows removed by Nature’s Cure.
  • Movement Abilities: Certain movement-based Abilities, like Greymane’s Dark Flight or Chen’s Flying Kick, will no longer fail to move the Hero toward a target currently affected by Varian’s Taunt or Garrosh’s Warlord’s Challenge.
  • Sgt. Hammer: Can now correctly deploy Biotic Emitters on Volskaya Foundry while in Siege Mode.
  • The Butcher: Fixed an issue that prevented The Butcher from collecting Meat while piloting the Triglav Protector, Dragon Knight, or Garden Terror.

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