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April 17th, 2019 Patch - 7 Days Later
7 Days Later
(banner courtesy of /u/Somber99)

View the previous post on HeroesHearth here.
View all of my previous blog posts here.

Hello again!  After each balance patch, I've taken it upon myself to track how the balance changes have affected the Nexus.  It's become something of a habit for me, and I thought it might be fun to share my data with the community.

In case you've forgotten what changed in the last patch, here's a link.

Disclaimer (please read!):
All data provided in this post was collected from Hotslogs, which is a database of player-submitted games.  Data was collected between 3:30 PM and 4:30 PM EST each day, using the special filter "Last 7 Days (Current Build)".  As usual, keep in mind that my numbers may differ slightly from Hotslogs's "official" figures as the site regularly updates older information as more games are added. Therefore, our data may not match up perfectly, but it should give a generally accurate view of how the week progressed.

Here is a link to the spreadsheet with the data I've collected.  The spreadsheet contains all of my original data, split into two categories: "Composite" (which represents all data across the entire week) and "Daily" (which represents data from each individual day).  If you'd prefer a summarized report, read on!

Here is a table showing the win rates, pick rates, ban rates, and overall popularity of each hero in Ranked and Unranked play:

Remember, only the heroes whose win rates are highlighted blue/orange with white text have exceeded their margin of error.  Heroes which do not exceed the margin of error are considered to have too little data to confirm that they have changed in any significant way.  Note that the error column assumes a 95% confidence interval.  To put it simply, a 95% confidence interval is a numerical way to measure whether the win rate has changed in any significant way.  If the change to a win rate exceeds the error, then we can assume that there is approximately a 95% chance that repeated tests would confirm the true value lies within the bounds of the confidence interval.

The seven-day analysis is below.  Please note that while I try to cover all heroes, not all heroes are in need of in-depth analysis of their changes, so some heroes may have short summaries or may even be omitted entirely.  Also, be aware that the contents of this section are primarily my own opinion of the changes, albeit backed with data.  If you disagree, feel free to explain why in the comments below.

1) Alarak sees a modest increase in win rate largely due to Ruthless Momentum.  This was often my favorite talent choice to begin with, but the changes have made it considerably stronger.  The reduced mana cost and more frequent use allows for skilled Alarak players to have a greater level of manipulation on the battlefield.

2) Changes in mana costs generally change very little, with a few noted exceptions.  Most of the mana changes had little effect on win rates, at least, not enough of a change to achieve a statistically significant change in win rate.  However, two exceptions exist.  Hanzo suffered two mana changes: 5 more mana per Storm Bow, and 10 mana per Scatter Arrow.  This made his mana management measurably more taxing (try saying that five times fast).  Lunara also saw an increase in her Crippling Spores (10 more mana per cast) which seems to have dinged her win rate in Ranked play somewhat.

3) Arthas and Li-Ming see changes in Unranked play, but no significant change in Ranked.  Interestingly enough, two heroes saw adjustments to their Unranked play, but not to Ranked.  When you look at who, though, it's not terribly surprising as to why.  Li-Ming saw a mana cost removal when using a particular talent, and Arthas saw mana cost reductions on his Frozen Tempest.  These changes are significant, but unlikely to make a huge impact on their play in more competitive circles.  Neither change is big, but both saw slight increases in play rate in Unranked play, leading me to believe that these changes may well have been more people playing around with the heroes and seeing success rather than any profound shift in their overall strength.

4) Abathur's changes are considerable....but don't seem to have had much impact, outside of Unranked play.  Of course, it's hard to measure how much impact there truly was, because most of the changes were designed to bring forth non-Carapace options.  And ideally, that shouldn't hurt his win rate if done correctly.  It does seem to have increased his Unranked win rate, however, which makes sense since the buffs went into his locust....and at least in my experience, Unranked games tend to focus a lot less on their macro than they probably ought to.

Looking for more of my work?  My last article discusses concerns about snowballing and the "passive meta" that the new changes may bring if not handled properly.  That article is located here.  Feel free to let me know your thoughts to this article in the comments section below, or on Twitter at my handle @CriticKitten.  I look forward to your replies!

Hope to see you again next time!
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