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Balance Update - Week of July 5th

OP ske7ch

All units! Following last week's game update and new DLC release the team has been monitoring feedback and player data closely and has determined that a few further balance adjustments are needed. As a reminder you can check out the full details of the June 29th balance update HERE.

These changes will be going through test today with the goal of releasing them to the public within the next day or two barring any unforeseen issues.

Balance updates of this nature don't require a game patch and instead will happen invisibly behind the scenes. If you're in a game session when the changes are deployed you will prompted to restart/re-login to the Halo Wars 2 services.

(Update 7/6 - The balance notes were adjusted to remove the Mantis "now starts on cooldown" as the team found an issue arising from that specific change. Some additional detail was added around the new/final tweaks to the Mantis' cooldown)

Balance Update - Week of July 5th
The focus of this update is on reining Jerome in a bit, reducing the impact of his Mantis (especially in team games), and limiting the early Rush potential of other hero units.

Time for Heroes
- Speed bonus 30% -> 15%
The interaction with the much cheaper early game Jerome hero was too much, especially because he could hit-and-run very effectively.

All heroes
- Clamped at a minimum cost of 300 supply, 275 power
- Arbiter and Jerome keep their slightly higher supply costs (350)
- Kinsano dropped in power cost slightly as a result (300 -> 275)
To reduce the impact of early game Hero rush attacks, we've increased any heroes cheaper than 300/275 up to those costs. This provides a common baseline for Hero building and prevents any single Hero unit from becoming uniquely dominant. Some Heroes have been reduced in effectiveness as a result but we will continue to adjust for any weakness in the future as we gather more data.

Commander Jerome
- Takes damage upon death of the Mantis if he's inside
- Mantis summon cooldown 25s -> 70s
- 1st upgrade time 25s -> 30s, power cost 450 -> 500
- Jerome damage reduced -10%/-8%
The major change here is slowing down the Mantis push timing, and making it take substantially longer to replace if it dies.

Jerome's Mantis
- Initial HP/SP reduced -50%/-25%
- Mantis missile range reduced -14%
- Mantis lasers initial damage reduced -17%
- Velocity reduced -9%
To limit the early game impact of Jerome's Mantis we have reduced its durability, making it beatable at Tier 1 with upgraded core infantry or scout vehicles. With upgrades the Mantis at max level is still at its original power.

Mantis Summon Cooldown
When the research is finished, the ability will be available for use immediately.However, if Jerome is killed and then trained again, the ability will start on cooldown.
Examples:
Jerome on the battle fighting and starts research on the Command Mantis upgrade. It finishes and he can immediately use his ability to call in the Mantis.
During this fight, Jerome and the Mantis are killed. The player recruits Jerome again, he comes out of the base, the ability will not be usable for another 70 seconds.

Brute Warlord
- HP/SP reduced -14%/-13%
- 1st upgrade power cost 300 -> 350, time 25s -> 30s
- Pull cooldown 10s -> 15s
Decimus' Warlord rush needed to be slowed down, and the frequency of his Pull ability made him punishing, and too effective at assassinating enemy heroes. These changes bring him more closely in line with the other hero units at Tier 1.
Atriox's Chosen
- Initial damage reduced -10%
- Final damage upgrade reduced -4%
- Build time 30s -> 33s
In addition to the minimum cost changes for heroes, this greatly slows down the Atriox's Chosen early game, increases the hit to long-term economy, and allows all heroes (including Johnson and Forge) to beat this rush.

As always, thank you for sharing your feedback with the team and we look forward to getting these adjustments out the door soon.