As Faeria is still in it’s beta phase, now is the time for drastic balance changes and completely redesigns. Faeria designers know this, and as a result the latest patch has done just that: completely redesigned the most powerful cards in the game.
I am, of course, talking about each colors respective Colossus. These 8/8 giants felt like an auto include in most decks, and their “build around me” card text was too easily satisfied. In the official patch notes, Faeria designers explain the need for a colossus change:
“We’ve come to realize the core mechanic behind the previous Colossus functionality just doesn’t work well in Faeria. There are a lot of different situations in which we think they just weren’t working out perfectly, and we saw this reflected as well in player feedback.”
The previous core mechanic was simple: the 8/8’s were too expensive to play unless the player satisfied specific conditions multiple times in order to lower the Faeria cost. The best case scenario is a massive creature for 0 Faeria, while the worst case scenario was a unplayable card stuck in your hand for 16+ Faeria. This type of card just doesn’t work in Faeria for the following reasons:
- Running out of cards isn’t very common in Faeria, as players always have the option to draw multiple cards in one turn. Because of this, the high Faeria cost “down side” of the colossus never really existed. It didn’t matter if the Colossus was stuck in your hand some games.
- The conditions to activate the colossus (especially Wavecrash) were just to easy. Decks didn’t have to try and satisfy these conditions because they happened in every game eventually.
- Because the Colossus would have it’s Faeria cost while being in your deck or your hand, almost every single deck was made better by including a Colossus or three. Nothing feels better then drawing a < 3 Faeria cost 8/8, especially when you didn’t really work for it- you just played as normal.
Wavecrash, Windstorm, and Volcanic Colossus were the biggest offenders, but for the sake of consistency even green’s Primeval Colossus was transformed into something new:
Gains +1/+0 when you create a colored land while this card is in your hand or deck.
Gains +1/+0 when you play a creature with 5 Life or more while this card is in your hand or deck.
Gains +1/+0 when an enemy creature dies while this card is in your hand or deck.
Gains +1/+0 when you play an event while this card is in your hand or deck.
Why these changes work
The most important difference between these cards is that their Faeria cost is fixed- always 6 Faeria. This removes the most obnoxious moments when one player get’s immediate control of the board for no real investment, while also making the card feel less swingy.
The second important part of these changes is the investment needed to turn a 0/8 creature into 8/8’s or above. No one wants to play a 2/8 for 6 Faeria, so if you plan to run the Colossus in your deck, you will have to plan accordingly. This deck building challenge is what the Colossus were originally intended to provide and the decks that accept this challenge are rewarded with the possibility of a creature even larger than a 8/8.
And lastly, the Wavecrash mechanic of “every time you draw a card” as removed, and for good reasons. Card draw is just too common.
There were more changes in the latest patch, but the colossus changes will impact the game more than any of them. Expect different decks at the very top of the Faeria ladders, because the Colossus control archetype we have grown to expect may be leaving us.