Minion Masters

Minion Masters

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UncleOwnage  [developer] Nov 10, 2017 @ 2:27am
Discourse and feedback - Let’s talk about Dragon Nest
Hello everyone,

In the last month there’s been a massive amount of feedback both on Expeditions and lately on balance changes.

To us, this has highlighted a challenge in separating good feedback from exaggerated feedback.

We want to emphasize that we’re always listening to you guys.
We are actively discussing upcoming changes with dedicated players, but there’s room for improvement and we’re looking into a better system.
You, the community, are an invaluable source of feedback for our game, and we’re making the game for you to enjoy.
You’re also the ones who play the game the most, so we are open to the fact that we can make mistakes which you can help us correct.

The issue appears when we receive a large amount of feedback and very strong knee-jerk reactions, which can sometimes be difficult to navigate, thus making it hard to identify the actual problem and find a constructive way to move forward.
We’ve seen a shift in the feedback from initial reactions to the last 24 hours - discussions went from being heated and confrontational to calm and constructive. This made it a lot easier for us to work with.

Specifically, we’re aware that there is quite likely a problem with the recent Dragon Nest change, and we want your help in investigating this.
If there’s a mistake, we want to be open to fixing it.

Therefore we’re asking you openly to give us more focused feedback on the Dragon Nest.

First off we should mention something important;
Spirit Infusion was one of the cards we wanted to look at after Volco and Dragon Nest, so changes are already coming on that.
While it’s not completely final, here’s the planned change;
  • Spirit infusion; Mana cost from 2 to 4, number of spirits from 2 to 3.

Now you’re aware of that planned change, give us your feedback in the following format;
  • Tell us what you think is good and bad about the changed Dragon Nest
  • If you have suggestions, feel free to post them as well

Thank you for being so passionate about Minion Masters
-BetaDwarf
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Showing 1-15 of 54 comments
Sinilil Nov 10, 2017 @ 2:37am 
It just reverts back to patch 39 Dragon nest costs, and Health Gains, but reverse where nest is 3 mana, and infusion is 4. I don't think flightless dragon will be enough of a weakness considering the nest itself is now too over stated, and too many easy ways to spawn dragons. Infusion I think is also just fundementally a issue, or maybe a better phrase for it is a whole different problem on itself, and probably needs a entire post dedicated to it.
Last edited by Sinilil; Nov 10, 2017 @ 2:39am
MY HERO Nov 10, 2017 @ 2:37am 
Oh wow that's an interesting change on spirit infusion. I'm interested to see where it goes. It definitely makes the use entirely different from now where people use it mainly to buff up 1 high dmg minion to a monster.
Eazotop Nov 10, 2017 @ 2:56am 
As a preface, I enjoy gameplay based on soft counters and balanced strategies, as opposed to having polarised match ups and games won because some very specific decks have huge strengths and weaknesses.

about the DNEST

The good :

- The nest no longer spawning flying units is definitely a good change in making it susceptible to less specific counterplays, giving other decks less "obligations" when trying to defend against it.

- Since it can now be countered with less specific units, it becomes a numbers game to balance it, increase/reduce mana cost, duration, and HP are easier changes to make than the decision to limit the mana cost of spells or making it spawn lazy whelps.

Which brings me to the bad :

- The 300 hp and 3 mana cost makes it very mana inefficient to counter it with spells

- Defending against it is harder every minute since unlike other spawners, its value over time is tied to the mana you spend after the investment. The 45 seconds duration makes it excessively hard to outvalue especially after the 3 minute mark, even with units that would be good counters in the early game. (defenso/ghost turret/colossus)

for the SPIRIT INFUSION :

I'll start with the bad :

- As long as the fundamental mechanics of the card remain the same, it will be something to consider when making/changing every high impact and low life unit. I'm mostly thinking about succubus.

The good :

- Well, it's a nerf, and it might be enough to make those type of strategies weak enough to be countered without having to play the specific hard counters.
Tenby Nov 10, 2017 @ 3:42am 
It's just stupidly crazy, unfun, and not balanced in any way. Game is completely broken right now by only this card, and can't be played.

See, that's not very rational. I don't want to judge you on that, because I know that especially balance seems to trigger impulsive emotional effects. Your feedback might be even valuable and I appreciate you taking part in this discussion, but I feel like emotional reactions like that devalue the content provided and we want to aim on a calm and rational discussion here.
Last edited by Tenby; Nov 10, 2017 @ 4:22am
GReY WolF Nov 10, 2017 @ 3:47am 
Suggestion: Dragon Nest lose some amount of its hp on each dragon spawn, and rebalanced in that way.
Zgriptor Nov 10, 2017 @ 3:52am 
  • I would suggest this change to Spirit Infusion -> Keep it at 2 mana, 2 spirits but make it so that a single spell cannot hit the same minion twice. Another cast of Spirit Infusion should be able to buff once more a minion that's been already infused. This would basically halve the effectiveness of "boss" decks unless they start running 2 separate minions so that they can get the full buff effect from one spell.

  • And now, the Dragon Nest. I don't really know what the best change would be for DNest, but it's either a number adjustment - less building HP and duration, or it's introducing that 3+ mana spell requirement once again so that you can not abuse KP Bridge Swap, Millo's missiles, 2x Shock Rock/Infusion or w/e other combo there is.

  • There could be a third possibility, although probably harder to implement but make it so that the Spell's cost determines the stats of the dragon that comes out
    i.e.: 1 mana spell -> spawns a 50 HP, 25 DPS dragon, 2 mana spell -> spawns a 75 HP, 37,5 DPS dragon, 3 mana spell -> dragon as it is right now, 100 HP, 50 DPS... and so on. This would potentially create different strategies --- do I want 6 low HP & damage dragons that I want to buff with rampage and infusion or do I want 2 175 HP dragons and a beam to my opponnent's face?
Omicron Nov 10, 2017 @ 4:59am 
I think the reported problem might lie on huge value you can get of a single card.
For example in my Milloween deck I have replaced my specific single unit counter Muskeeter by dnest, getting tons of melee units from it. (and huge value output just for 3 mana).

Here my suggestions to reduce a bit that, while not completely banning this still nice card :

- For Dragon nest : when your master use a spell it spawns an dragon egg : after 2 seconds it spawns to a flyless dragon.

It will kill synergy with health buffs since buff will be wasted on eggs.
It will be much weaker against opponent AOE spells if you spawns spam spells in a short amount of time while giving time to react.

-To reduce potential number of stacked eggs, you can even do that : when the dragon spawns it eats one of its sibling eggs ! (or even more or all of them !)


Originally posted by GReY WolF:
Suggestion: Dragon Nest lose some amount of its hp on each dragon spawn, and rebalanced in that way.

-I like that suggestion too, while simple to implement.

- Another "cool" suggestion : make spawned dragon or egg type or stats depends on used spell mana.

- Spawn ♥♥♥♥♥♥ dragon scrats instead ^^
Leto Nov 10, 2017 @ 5:17am 
When it comes to dragon's nest, I think the value it currently provides is just way to high. To make that more concrete: my main deck for some time has been a deck that revolves around getting a soulstealer to the highest possible potential using infusion/spirit vessel and double black hole for protection and the option to retarget when fixed on a base (which allows it to get more charges).

After seeing the changes made last patch, I decided to switch out rampage for Dragon's Nest, since I figured it would provide me with some additional value while cycling to my next soulstealer using cheap spells. The actual result was that I didn't have to cast soulstealer at all for multiple games, because cycling to Dragon's Nest instead was way more effective (at one point I had three active DN's while only including one copy in my deck, leading to a nearly unstoppable horde of dragons).
Because of the high health, long lifespan and low cost there are no cost effective ways of dealing with DN, leaving you trying to counter the welps themselves, only to see you're counter getting killed by *insert spell here*, because the whole point of DN right now is to cycle quickly through cheap spells. I do however love the change from flight to flightless, so it's really just a matter of tweaking the value by either lowering stats/lifespan, upping the cost or reintroducing the 3mana trigger requirement.

When it comes to infusion, I think increasing the cost to 4 might be a good option to remove it's spamming/speedcycling potential, from which things like Arcane Golem benefit greatly, while still allowing strategies that revolve around making a unit into a powerhouse.
eytsh Nov 10, 2017 @ 5:54am 
How about making dn count mana spent for spells and then spawn a dragon for every third count. That way zero-cost spells dont count and higher ones get more value.

It could be marked on the dn itself either with a number or as an animation.
0:empty nest
1: egg
2: dragon sitting on nest (already defending it?)
3: dragon becomes unit

It mussed be discussed if its a walking or flying dragon.

Another question is: should the count be reset after a spawn or keep counting? Personally I like the idea that Dn plus beam could give two dragons...
Terra Reveene Nov 10, 2017 @ 6:17am 
Firstly, DNest is very comparable to other unit producing buildings. You spend mana (make an investment) and then you gain value out of the building over time. The value is, and should, be greater than the initial investment. It becomes a numbers game, essentially. A question of "How many times more mana should you get out from a building based on how much you spent on it?".

With that in mind, here are my thoughts:
I liked the change from flying whelps to the land whelps. I think it was needed, as all decks were required to run more than a reasonable amount of anti air cards or other cards to deal with the dragons.

The thing I don't like about DNest is how low risk it is. When compared to xbow guild or swarmer totem, DNest costs very little mana to throw down. the guild and swarmer totems are both high investment with roughly twice the mana value as a reward. Meanwhile, a DNest deck can just throw down a nest almost irregardless of what the current board state is. With just 5 mana available they can throw it down and get a whelp from it immediately. On top of that, with how low mana cost the nest is, you can easily save up mana and spawn a bunch of whelps at once out of nowhere, giving your opponent very little time to react to what is suddenly quite a sizeable push. Neither xbow guild nor swarmer totem does this. You have to wait until you actually profit from them. Your opponent has time to react.

Suggested change: DNest mana cost up from 3 to 5 mana, keep everything else as it currently is. It'd then be in line with other minion producing buildings in that you have to make a big investment and don't get to profit until it's been up and running for a while.

People complain a lot about the duration, but with an increased mana cost, the DNest would effectively have a lower duration anyways, as you can't spawn as many dragons from a single nest since you'll be short on mana.
EDIT: The DNest duration might have to be reduced anyways though. I don't have the numbers for xbow guild and swarmer totem in my head, but a duration similar to those could potentially work.
EDIT2: Wow, I do not know what the duration of our minion producing have at all apparently. 1 minute is too much, that's for sure. 45 seconds feels like a bit much as well though... 40? Just to cut off an excess dragon or two.

I have no additional comments on spirit infusion. I don't like the mechanic in and of itself (how it stacks), and as such any comments I may have on it won't be valuable.

EDIT3: And just to mention it because I forgot it, I agree with RushSecond's take on Defenso Chopper. And his take on Spirit Infusion resonates with my experience as well.
Last edited by Terra Reveene; Nov 10, 2017 @ 12:06pm
hackaphreaka Nov 10, 2017 @ 7:23am 
I know you are asking for discussion on Dragon Nest specifically, and this isn't that, so I apologize.

I do not think Dragon Nest is the problem, I just think this recent change has acted as a catalyst for highlighting a larger problem(s).

First off, I think you make changes to cards too often. I started playing right around Update 41, when you made changes to DW. The proposed changes to Spirit Infusion in your OP would make it the (I think, it's hard to keep track) third card that has been changed more than once in the time I've been playing. To me, that should really start ringing some alarm bells. The fact you have to make changes to cards multiple times in a few months means changing cards isn't really fixing anything, or at least achieving the results you want.

I play this game a handful of hours a week. That does not mean I like or care about it any less than someone who plays it like it's their job. I interact with cards less frequently than someone who plays this game for hours a day, and the constant changes are felt more by people who play this game casually. Just when you get used to a certain way a card/deck operates, it changes.

Secondly, I do not think there are enough cards, or maybe more specifically, enough effects or keywords, in the game. I think some very basic things like silence/dispell, and reliable master healing, are missing from the game. I believe if the players had more tools and options (not to mention more time, I think we are reacting to these Dnest changes too quickly) when crafting their decks, they would be able to keep things like Demon Warrior, Dragon Nest, Spirit Infusion, etc from getting too powerful, rather then you having to step in and make yet another change to a card you already changed multiple times to 'fix it'.

If you released a new card at even a third of the pace you made balance changes, the meta would be kept fresh and it would shift and change. We would have tools in our toolbox to keep powerful strategies in check, so you didn't have to do it. Unused cards would find new life so you wouldn't feel the need to change their mana costs.

I don't think you should have to make powerful things less powerful, that really isn't fun.

I should be able to figure out my own way to deal with peoples strategies, that's more fun.


Terra Reveene Nov 10, 2017 @ 7:56am 
The game's not released yet hackaphreaka. That's the "bell" that you keep hearing when changes are made.
Dragon Nest is statistically broken at the moment, as it produces far more value than should be allowed. A hotfix is very much needed and nothing will change that save for buffing cards to the point where they can deal with nest. But why buff everything else when you can nerf the nest? See why we're discussing this?
Figuring out how to beat an overpowered strategy might be fun to you, but for everyone else it's frustrating to be forced to either play it or play whatever hardcounters it. Majority wins here.
FeelsBadMan Nov 10, 2017 @ 8:33am 
My (probably dumb) idea for DNest, would be to balance it in terms with XBow Guild and Swarmer Totem and make it spawn a flightless dragon every X seconds. Then make it slightly worse but everytime you play a spell you take X seconds off the production time to the next spawned unit. This way it would add a skill component (eg: if your next unit comes out after 0.2 seconds but you just reduced the time by 1 second you lost value which would maybe force people to watch out WHEN do they play their spells instead of spamming like crazy). Secondly it could probably prevent new people from thinking "why the ♥♥♥♥ are suddenly coming 1238931 dragons towards me, OP as ♥♥♥♥" , since the basic concept woukd already be known from Xbow guild etc.

In terms of Spirit infusion im not a fan of the planned changes. Firstly it is the same thing but nerfed by a 1/4 and more investment heavy. I mean right now its used in fun strats like unfusion Suc. or DNest, maybe Spell Millo. But this change wouldnt prevent people from playing Infusion Suc. since it just got worse with rampage and potential Spirit infusion nerf but if you got no hardcounter/dont know to outplay it, people will still think "i couldnt do anything/no interaction with the opponent" which is the real problem i think. For Dnest and Spell millo its nice since its a 2 mana spell but if its get nerfed i just play a shock rock or something instead since its not really needed. So basically you will just see it played less but the original problem probably remains.


Originally posted by hackaphreaka:
I know you are asking for discussion on Dragon Nest specifically, and this isn't that, so I apologize.

I do not think Dragon Nest is the problem, I just think this recent change has acted as a catalyst for highlighting a larger problem(s).

First off, I think you make changes to cards too often. I started playing right around Update 41, when you made changes to DW. The proposed changes to Spirit Infusion in your OP would make it the (I think, it's hard to keep track) third card that has been changed more than once in the time I've been playing. To me, that should really start ringing some alarm bells. The fact you have to make changes to cards multiple times in a few months means changing cards isn't really fixing anything, or at least achieving the results you want.

I play this game a handful of hours a week. That does not mean I like or care about it any less than someone who plays it like it's their job. I interact with cards less frequently than someone who plays this game for hours a day, and the constant changes are felt more by people who play this game casually. Just when you get used to a certain way a card/deck operates, it changes.

Secondly, I do not think there are enough cards, or maybe more specifically, enough effects or keywords, in the game. I think some very basic things like silence/dispell, and reliable master healing, are missing from the game. I believe if the players had more tools and options (not to mention more time, I think we are reacting to these Dnest changes too quickly) when crafting their decks, they would be able to keep things like Demon Warrior, Dragon Nest, Spirit Infusion, etc from getting too powerful, rather then you having to step in and make yet another change to a card you already changed multiple times to 'fix it'.

If you released a new card at even a third of the pace you made balance changes, the meta would be kept fresh and it would shift and change. We would have tools in our toolbox to keep powerful strategies in check, so you didn't have to do it. Unused cards would find new life so you wouldn't feel the need to change their mana costs.

I don't think you should have to make powerful things less powerful, that really isn't fun.

I should be able to figure out my own way to deal with peoples strategies, that's more fun.

Changing cards too often? Its a beta, i think cards should be changed even more frequently.
First you say cards are changed to often and then you suggest to throw a whole bunch of new cards in there in the hope that will balance things. You have more cards to balance and more cards to balance around which makes it way worse. I dont see the point.

Why not change spirit infusion as a spell even? Maybe something like the spirit is searching a damaged unit and heals it back up for X amound and X amount of the unused healing will be added as bonus health to the unit. A conept like this would encourage it to be played as a healing spell rather than buffing 1 unit to be Chuck Norris and rape everyone alone.

Im really too lazy to proofread that, im sorry.
RushSecond Nov 10, 2017 @ 11:27am 
I posted on reddit first before finding the thread here, woops. Anyway...

Alright so the changes made:

* Spawns flightless dragons instead of flying dragons
* Triggers on every spell instead of only 3+ cost spells
* Health 250 -> 300
* Duration 30 -> 45

First, I'm neutral on the change to flightless dragons. The issue with dragon nest previously was not that they were flying. It's that you got so many of them that they could overpower any ranged minions that the opponent played. There's also not many "spell resistant" ranged minions that can kill that many dragons while not dying to daggerfall, fireball, etc. All that said, I'm fine with the change anyway since it follows the same rules as Forced: Showdown (dragon nests spawned flightless dragons in that game) and will admittedly be less of a headache to balance moving forward.

The duration and health increases were also good changes. Having higher duration moves nest toward more of a "slow burn" card that generates value over a long period of time instead of a bursty combo card that can kill fast. Again, easier to deal with and easier to balance.

However, I think removing the mana cost restriction is very bad. It forces players to optimize the nest output by jamming as many cheap spells in the deck instead of using more expensive spells, and also gives an advantage to masters that get free or cheap spells from their perks.

The worst thing is a change you didn't make. Mana cost remained at 3. It should have been pretty clear that an optimized nest deck would produce more flightless dragons than a 3 mana card ever should.

Finally, the dragons themselves just seem really slow to me. I've been thinkg for a while that flightless dragons should increase movespeed 5 -> 7 to make them a bit more responsive and not so weak against lots of ranged minions.

As for other cards, Defenso Chopper is a problem. This card has historically been the ultimate dragon counter, and has been heavily pushed with very high stats in order to fulfill that. This isn't really fair to dragon nest, and I don't think even a dragon nest with balanced stats will be viable at all solely because of defenso chopper countering it so thoroughly.

And as for the change to Spirit Infusion, I also think that is quite a bad change. It's already a very niche card because giving +100 health for 1 mana isn't worth it on almost all minions in the game currently. It's only a problem on certain minions and only when stacked repeatedly to create 1000+ health minions.

So my suggestions are:

* Add the 3+ mana cost restriction back
* Increase mana cost 3 -> 4
* Increase flightless dragon movespeed 5 -> 7
* Reduce defenso chopper melee return damage (along with other changes to keep it balanced in the average case)
* Tweak dragon nest balance using its duration. Too weak? Duration 45 -> 50 or more. Too strong still? Duration 45 -> 40 or less, or you could increase mana cost more and increase duration instead.
* Spirit infusion (and all other sources of health infusion) health increased 100 -> 125, but a minion cannot be infused more than once ever.
Last edited by RushSecond; Nov 10, 2017 @ 11:35am
StevenEven Nov 10, 2017 @ 12:49pm 
Dnest: Following the pacth notes I realzied that Dnest purpose seemed to be" shoots a burst of dragons very fast" but it does not seem that was your intention. With teh recent changes makeing it lower amana csot, higher health adn duration but haveing a requirment for spaning a dragon, it seems that your intention was "place bulding and then play game normally using spels to counter, while pasively gaining dragons" althouh players still managed to get that spam out of it becuase of wildcards adn so on. With the most recent change, makeing it even healthier and durable, its seems obvious that was what you wanted to promote, as using spels to gain something pasively, but it did not work out either... but how to you manage to get to your intention?
Ideas: mana cost from 3 to 4 or 5, its obvious that with lower cost, players can easily folow up multiple spells after the placement, with higher mana cost, that will be higgher, as well as placeing 2 of them in a deck wont be that easy anymore.
rework idea: duration 45 to 60 seconds, spawning several dragons in quick succesion will significantly reduce Dnest health ( everytime you spawn a dragon, the Dnest gets a "cooldown" for 5(or maybe even 10) seconds. during the cooldown, spawining any dragons would deal 50 damage to Dnest, if you spawn a 3rd dragon, the Dnest gets 100 hp damage, this is because you spawned 1 dragon during 2 cooldowns that were going on at the same time ( becuase the first cooldown did not finish yet)). Overall This should promote players to use it more pasively, rather that bursting dragons with 2 mana spels.

Spirit infusion: I will be VERY happy with the change, makeing it 4 mana would significantly nerf a buff deck, where 1 minion is buffed to thousands of health.Overall I think healing in general should be nerfed as it gives insane value for almost no mana. Also I have seen suggestions where the spirit would not be able to overheal a minion more than once, I personally think thats a horrible idea as this would give a lot of issues with how the spell works as well as breaking the point of overhealing.
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Date Posted: Nov 10, 2017 @ 2:27am
Posts: 54