Patch 20.0's notes came out during today's Forged in the Barrens final reveal stream and, as promised, we'll receive a balance change. To be precise, Nitroboost Poison will receive a cost increase, going up from 1 to 2 mana.
This change was accidentally leaked a few weeks ago, but we're quite surprised that this will be the only tweak going into the new expansion. The set rotation and the introduction of Barrens and Core will very likely shake up the meta, but we would've liked to see a couple more targets to be hit - maybe because they're overabundant in the current meta, maybe because they're quite frustrating to play against.
However, it is very likely that the devs decided to touch only the necessary and leave the rest as it is, only to intervene later on, which is a fair approach - in the end, Team 5 has shown to be quite reactive and definitely favorable to swift changes (if needed), so we're confident everything will turn out for the best.
Cost increased from 1 to 2 mana.
We're moving Nitroboost Poison to 2 mana to reduce the amount of cheap burst damage available in Rogue and create a real cost for Corruption. When evaluating Rogue's future weapon-centric archetypes, we want to position the play patterns around building up a weapon over multiple turns and fighting for board rather than the hyper-aggressive strategies seen in decks like Stealth Rogue.
Since Darkmoon Races came out, we all realized how good Rogue was: during the last month, Valeera boasted a handful of playable archetypes throughout ladder (mainly Secret, Miracle and Stealth), all of which were consistent at keeping a remarkable hand-size while pushing damage and/or gaining control of the board.
All these archetypes had a small core of cards in common, one of which was Nitroboost Poison itself, particularly devastating in combination with Self-Sharpening Sword and cheap Stealth minions like Spymistress, Worgen Infiltrator and Sneaky Delinquent, so that Rogue was able to push insane amounts of damage in the very first few turns of the game with little to no answer from the opponents:; all of this while cycling through their deck with the likes or Cutting Class, Swindle and Secret Passage.
While Warrior will also take a hit (the card was played by Garrosh as well, but was far less of an outlier), we think this change is 100% deserved: it won't kill the card, but it will make it more difficult to Corrupt (unless it's combined with Preparation) and play in the first few turns, which is what we've been asking for.
What do you think of this nerf? Are there any other cards you would've wanted to see changed? Let us know in the comments below.