Here’s everything you need to know about Hearthstone Battlegrounds patch 25.6.
The Festival of Legends expansion is locking and loading. Or is it rocking and rolling? Regardless, is it even a festival without lineup changes here and there? Fear not — Hearthstone patch 25.6 switches up the Battlegrounds roster. New hero E.T.C., Band Manager is a fitting addition alongside the return of Buddies. Their return prefaces a new attempt at Battlegrounds game balance, with heroes starting at 30 health and a new armor system. Additionally, some old favorites give way to new minions. Let's explore the festival grounds to see what it has in store.
Battlegrounds patch 25.6 presents E.T.C., Band Manager
A festival experience goes hand in hand with getting freebies. Constructed players have their usual shiny new toy in the form of the card E.T.C., Band Manager. But the Tauren cannot resist managing a warband as well, so he’s popping up as a new hero in Battlegrounds.
Since a festival is nothing without your Buddies, the Battlegrounds patch 25.6 has Sign a New Artist as its hero power. Using it lets you discover a Buddy of your Tavern Tier or lower. Some sweet combos might happen, especially when you discover early economy units such as Mr. Bigglesworth's Buddy known as Lil' K.T.
Another great one is Elise Starseeker’s very own Jr. Navigator. It permanently reduces the hero power cost by two . You can combo that with Cookie the Cook’s Buddy, Sous Chef, since it lets you use the hero power twice in a turn.
Heroes now have 30 starting health
Now that the new shinies are out of the way, let’s address the elephant in the room. Or the buffed Annihilan Battlemaster in the room? In patch 25.6, Battlegrounds heroes have 30 starting health, down from 40. To compensate, heroes now have a set amount of armor, between five and 20, according to their performance in the meta.
High win rate outliers like Scabbs Cutterbutter have the five armor treatment, while other top-tier picks like Cookie the Cook, Malygos, Millhouse Manastorm, and Guff Runetotem hover at eight. So beware — “good” heroes can start below the previous threshold of 40!
The system has the potential to balance meta tyrants to as low as 35 combined health and armor. The Battlegrounds armor totals will continue to fluctuate as the meta develops, as indicated by the latest adjustments in patch 25.6.1.
Winrate disparities between low and high MMR are being addressed by assigning heroes a different armor value at high MMR. Thus, “high ceiling” picks like Dancin’ Deryl (18* > 15) and Maiev Shadowsong (15* > 10) have their armor lowered when accounting for skilled players. Meanwhile, Ini Stormcoil (10* < 13), Patches the Pirate (10* < 14), Ysera (8* < 10) have their armor buffed to account for their “low ceiling,” as greater expertise does not reap sizable additional benefits.
Battlegrounds patch 25.6 new minions to offset removals
E.T.C., Band Manager, the accompanying Buddies, and the health and armor change are the patch’s uncontested headliners. But there are a bunch of extra minions that are perfect supporting acts.
Some new additions are here to compensate for others leaving the minion pool. Dr. Boombox is a flavorful replacement for Kaboom Bot. Savannah Highmane was removed on the sly, and we now have Sly Raptor instead. Rendle the Mastermind, Houndmaster, and Archdruid Hamuul are also leaving.
Poetic Pen Pal is an honest economy minion. Pay three gold for 2/4 stats that yield back exactly three gold through Battlecry and sell value. Poetic PayPal? Double Fireworks Fanatic can act like an early Tea Master Theotar with a bit of shop luck.
In conclusion, Hearthstone Battlegrounds patch 25.6 strives for better balance in the wake of Buddies, with the 30 starting health change. New hero, E.T.C., Band Manager, prefaces the expansion.