(Warning, this is a long read) I know there are a lot of changes happening right now, but before the balance patch is finalized I think we need to carefully examine a pair of nerfs that haven't been discussed very much: "Mighty Hack: damage reduced from 14 to 13. Mighty Bludgeon: damage reduced from 14 to 13." These nerfs came out of nowhere and despite inquiries from players, we have never received an official explanation of why the changes were being made. I don't think I've ever witnessed a player complaining about either card being too strong, so I was completely shocked to see that their damage had been lowered. I strongly disagree with the changes as I see zero pros and substantial cons. To understand why I think this nerf is such a big problem, it is important that you have an understanding of the item level formula. Item levels aren't determined holistically, there's actually a very rigid formula that is used calculate every item's level. An item's level is determined by taking the sum of the values of each of its constituent cards (in the case of weapons, staves, and divine weapons, you need to divide by 2 and round down). A bronze card is worth 3, a silver card is worth 6, a gold card is worth 9, etc. These values can be altered by hidden modifiers that some cards have. For example, even though Nimble Strike and Dancing Cut are both silver cards, Dancing Cut has a "-" modifier which decreases its value from 6 to 5. This is why it's worse than Nimble Strike. Let's analyze the vanilla attacks. When I say vanilla I mean range 1 melee attacks that deal damage and don't have any other advantages or drawbacks. There are 13 vanilla attacks available to players right now. I've ordered them by their card value: -3: Weak Strike 0: Simple Strike, Bludgeon 1: Able Bludgeon 2: Trained Bludgeon 3: Strong Hack, Strong Bludgeon 6: Powerful Hack, Powerful Bludgeon 9: Mighty Hack, Mighty Bludgeon 12: Obliterating Bludgeon 15: Almighty Hack From a balance standpoint, you'd expect all of the vanilla attacks to be equally cost efficient. You'll find that this isn't the case. Right now, most of the attacks deal damage equal to their value + 5, but there are a few exceptions. Bludgeon, Able Bludgeon, and Trained Bludgeon all deal damage equal to their value +4, and Simple Strike only deals damage equal to its value +3. Why is this a problem? Well, you need only compare The Strongarm and Beater to see why cost efficiency makes a huge difference in weapon viability. Both of the above items deal 42 damage in total, but The Strongarm is tokenless while Beater costs a minor token. This is because Beater has two Able Bludgeons, which are cost inefficient. Meanwhile, all of The Strongarm's attacks are cost efficient. As a result, one item is almost strictly better than the other. From a balance standpoint, I think everyone would agree that it is optimal to minimize the number of cost inefficient attacks in this game to ensure that as many weapons as possible are competetive. The mighty attack nerf accomplishes the precise opposite. If their damage is reduced to 13, Mighty Hack and Mighty Bludgeon will become cost inefficient as they will only deal damage equal to their value +4. As a result of this, any weapon that happens to have one or more mighty attacks will deal less damage than an equivalent weapon of the same level that instead has weak, strong, powerful, obliterating, and/or almighty attacks. To make matters worse, the efficiency inequality already favors the rare attacks. Right now, Able Bludgeon is the only inefficient rare attack. The other inefficient attacks (Simple Strike, Bludgeon, Trained Bludgeon) are all common. If the common Mighty Hack and Mighty Bludgeon are nerfed, it will become even more skewed. At this point, the only efficient common attacks would be Weak Strike, Powerful Hack, and Powerful Bludgeon. I thought rarity wasn't supposed to be an indicator of raw power. So why are most rare attacks better than their common counterparts? From a competitive multiplayer standpoint, nerfing Mighty Bludgeon and Mighty Hack hurts a lot of items that have never been a problem and don't deserve to be nerfed. Most of the weapons with mighty attacks are fairly weak as is and don't see a lot of play at the highest levels. Personally, when I heard about the Vicious Thrust nerf, I was actually hoping to see a few players switch out their Bejeweled Shortswords for Sword Of The Lion, but now that Mighty Hack is being nerfed, I doubt that will happen. Mighty Hack is a rare enough sight even before the nerf. None of its items are very competitive. After the nerf, I'll be surprised if I see any high ranked players use it. Nerfing already mediocre items results in players having fewer viable build options, potentially lowering build diversity. So with all of these downsides why on earth are these attacks being nerfed? Like I said early, we have never received an official explanation. A few players have speculated that the nerf was primarily aimed at Healing Hand Mace, which is easily the strongest item with mighty attacks (though even Healing Hand Mace was never especially dominant at the highest levels of play). While Healing Hand Mace is indeed a great item, this is not a reason to nerf Mighty Bludgeon. The reason Healing Hand Mace feels so strong is because in terms of total card value, it is the best item in the game. Let's look at the value of the cards on Healing Hand Mace. It has two Mighty Bludgeons, which are gold and worth 9 points each. It has three Team Heals, which are silver and worth 6 points each. Lastly, it has one Sundering Strike, which is actually a silver+ card so it's worth 7 points. Add that all together and you get a whopping 43 points of total value, the highest of any item in the entire game. Normally, Healing Hand Mace would be a level 21 item. Why is it level 18? Well, for some reason, Mighty Bludgeon is actually valued as a silver card on priest items. This reduces the total value of the item by 6, bringing it down to 37 and yielding a level 18 item. Since Mighty Bludgeon has the same value as Powerful Bludgeon on divine weapons, if you really feel the need to nerf Healing Hand Mace’s damage, why not replace one of the Mighty Bludgeons with a Powerful Bludgeon? This is one way to keep the item in check without causing a bunch of collateral damage to items that don't need any nerfs. I know that compared to everything else that's happening, the mighty attack nerf is a just small change, but in my opinion it's a step in the wrong direction and it doesn’t need to happen. I personally don't see any upside to nerfing Mighty Hack and Mighty Bludgeon. It results in two more inefficient common attacks and it nerfs a bunch of items that were already a little weak. I think the change should be reverted. If necessary, the few items with mighty attacks that are on the strong side can easily be dealt with on a case by case basis via targeted nerfs. I'd appreciate it if others shared their thoughts. This is a change that hasn't been discussed very much and I am curious about what everyone else thinks of it. I think it is extremely important for the community to examine this change in depth before the devs consider implementing it. I would especially appreciate it if any staff chimed in and explained the reasoning behind the nerf. Every other nerf was explained, I think the community deserves an explanation for this one too.