Patch 20.2.2 – Nerfs to Refreshing Spring Water, First Day of School, Hysteria, Crabrider and Mankrik, 10 Card Buffs, 8 Quilboar Nerfs and Barrens Blacksmith Removed in BG

Update: Patch is now out on PC! Just like always, it might take up to a few extra hours for mobile releases.

What I initially thought was going to be a small balance patch turned out to be much bigger. Five Constructed nerfs, ten buffs, and eight Battlegrounds changes (+removal of one card) is nothing to scoff at. No matter which format you play, the game should feel very different once it’s released. And it’s going to be released very soon – most likely in just about an hour from posting this (around 10 AM PDT, or 19:00 CEST). (Seems like it will release a bit later than usual time, we’ll let you know once it’s out.)

Anyway, here’s a full list of changes:

Constructed Nerfs


Dev Comment: Spell Mage currently exhibits many explosive turns, with Refreshing Spring Water playing a significant role. By nerfing Refreshing Spring Water to 5 mana, we’re aiming to lower the frequency of extreme turns where Refreshing Spring Water draws cards and gains you mana in the process. By lowering the frequency of those gameplay sequences, we believe the deck’s range of possibilities will be more in line with other current options.


Dev Comment: As we look at Paladin’s continued strong performance across multiple archetypes, we’re nerfing First Day of School in order to hit Paladin’s early-game strength. By bumping up First Day of School’s mana cost and the amount of 1-Cost minions generated, we are moving the card to fit a value role rather than its initial position as an efficient curve enabler.


Dev Comment: At 3 mana, Hysteria becomes an option before opponents really have the opportunity to consider how to best interact with it. Pushing Hysteria to 4 mana gives more space for those board-committal decisions to occur and also allows cheaper removal in Priest/Warlock to have a more distinct purpose.


Dev Comment: Crabrider is too efficient in some of our board-based decks, clearing minions and dishing out a lot of Windfury damage. By changing Crabrider’s Windfury to only last until end of turn, we’re pulling back on the lethality it poses if left alone for a few turns. We aim for Crabrider to still remain a solid option for decks looking to swing back the board, especially when combined with buffs.


Dev Comment: We are lowering the Health on Mankrik, Consumed by Hatred to soften the effect of an early Olgra draw. At 7 Health, the token will be more in reach of the mid-game removal that’s available throughout turns 4-6.

Refreshing Spring Water, First Day of School, Hysteria, Crabrider, and Golden Mankrik will be eligible for a full dust refund for two weeks after Patch 20.2.2 goes live.

Constructed Buffs











Battlegrounds Changes

  • Roadboar – Now has 1 attack (down from 2).
  • Prophet of the Boar – Now has 2 attack (down from 3).
  • Bannerboar – Now has 1/4 stats (down from 2/5).
  • Bristleback Brute – Now gains extra +2/+2 from the first Blood Gem each turn (down from +3/+3).
  • Groundshaker – Only buffs other minions (instead of all minions).
  • Dynamic Duo – Now has 3/4 stats (down from 5/6).
  • Bonker – Now 3 attack (down from 4), golden version gives 1 Blood Gem after attacks (down from 2).
  • Chargla – Now has 4/4 stats (down from 7/7), only buffs other minions (instead of all minions).
  • Barrens Blacksmith – Removed from Battlegrounds minion pool.










Bug Fixes & Game Improvements

  • Fixed a bug that removed Glaivebound Adept from the game. It will now be back in your collection, safe and where it belongs.
  • Fixed a bug where Sparkjoy Cheat would draw a card whenever you had a Secret in your hand, even if the Secret was not castable (such as if the Secret was a duplicate of one already in play). Sparkjoy Cheat will now only draw a card if a Secret is cast from your hand.
  • Fixed a bug where using Vol’jin’s Hero Power on Goldgrubber would sometimes result in Goldgrubber’s stats being reset each round.
  • Updated language on certain Amalgam cards to properly include all Minion Types.
  • Fixed a bug related to in-game notifications.
  • Fixed a bug that prevented Battle-Ready Decks from being accessed if Dame Hazelbark was opened first.
  • Fixed various bugs related to properly displaying pricing on items in the in-game shop.


A Hearthstone player and writer from Poland, Stonekeep has been in a love-hate relationship with Hearthstone since Closed Beta. Over that time, he has achieved many high Legend climbs and infinite Arena runs. He's the current admin of Hearthstone Top Decks.

Check out Stonekeep on Twitter!

Leave a Reply


  1. Vincent
    May 16, 2021 at 2:23 pm

    Reached Legend with Secret Paladin in Wild with the same deck I used before the patch came out. That’s how OP paladin currently is. The deck contains both nerfd cards First Day of School and Crabrider which are still great. I posted the deck on this site.

    • Vincent
      May 16, 2021 at 2:25 pm

      (edit) with the same deck I used – to reach Legend in Standard – before the patch came out

  2. 2asandab
    May 14, 2021 at 5:17 am

    Inspired by the fiendish circle buff. Never actually got to Neeru – win or lose – when I ran this a half a dozen times in casual…


    May 13, 2021 at 2:00 pm

    There is one benefit of Refreshing Spring Water being upped to 5 is that it can corrupt Ring Toss which then can be played in the same turn to gain the two secrets. Of course I come to a point even when I have enough mana to play Refreshing Spring Water, I really can’t as will cause my hand to become full.

  4. PitLord
    May 12, 2021 at 11:53 pm

    Crabrider and first day are dead now, for hysteria, see a priest card nerfed it’s always good… to bad they also nerfed a warlock card :/ , at least Ticktatus is unchanged.
    Springwater it’s still too important for mage and manrik it’s still ok.

    The buff are pretty useless except maybe nzoth and warrior card, and the new 5 cost minion are an addiction to jandice pool.

  5. Drfury
    May 12, 2021 at 8:40 pm

    Other than the increased cost, Hysteria now interferes with Gollum making……….

    Thanks a bunch…….

  6. Vanish402
    May 12, 2021 at 5:36 pm

    Finally the xanesh fix, it was dumb that it didn’t lower the cost of corrupted cards before

    • Vanish402
      May 12, 2021 at 6:51 pm

      even tho, the nerf of hysteria gives kazakus priest a harsh time, dirty move from team 5

  7. Wolfur
    May 12, 2021 at 3:56 pm

    I was kind of hoping for druid buffs?
    Yes we got a token deck, but it has almost nothing to do with the new exspansion. And we druids always ends up with legendaries that we can’t use in our decks. I’m always stuck fighting opponent that spamm legendaries and I’m stuck with regular mobs.

  8. Chi.Spurger
    May 12, 2021 at 1:40 pm

    Pretty weird buffs. Wonder if they will affect the meta.

    • Vincent
      May 12, 2021 at 2:08 pm

      Yeah me too.
      Nerfed cards used by aggro/secret paladin are still fine, buffed cards look so random.

  9. LuKeAA
    May 12, 2021 at 1:19 pm

    9 Mana N’Zoth … aside from 1 turn early:

    Remake a board of minions, play Broom to give them all Rush, Revolve the board, these are the only Standard combso I can think of right now;

    in Wild you can Togwaggle scheme N’Zoth on the same turn without needing Shadowstep first (cool; I would still like to resurrect Ragnaros through its Battlecry and possibly other big minions with Charge or other effects), clear the board as Warlock with Plague of flames.

    Need to find the possibilities.

  10. Vincent
    May 12, 2021 at 12:19 pm

    Patch is live (Netherlands).

  11. HakanBeal
    May 12, 2021 at 11:40 am

    Mankrik should be disenchanted with full dust for them!

  12. X15d
    May 12, 2021 at 11:00 am

    These nerfs arent nearly enough to push back paladin, especially with bloodlu- i mean, conviction being unchanged and hysteria being nerfed (only viable control decks were warlock and priest anyway).

    Also, nzoth being buffed to 9 mana may actually be a secret nerf because most decks that run nzoth usually run yshaarj too and nzoth being 9 mana means it cant corrupt clowns anymore, which I feel like is a big deal. Not to mention most of the time the 1 leftover mana won’t be used. Being able to play it on turn 9 is also not really a big deal as all boardclears are cheaper than that.

    Warlock buffs are a joke, I dont think the shaman buffs are any good either but warrior may be promising

  13. A person who reacts to this
    May 12, 2021 at 10:42 am

    Poor little Crabrider 🙁
    Refreshing Spring Water, First Day of School and Hysteria feels good to see a nerf to in wild.

    Dark Inquisitor Xanesh feels like fix, but good none the less.
    N’Zoth, God of the Deep isn’t that much of difference either I think since the problem is for it to be worth you need such a specific deck.
    Personally I feel Deck of Chaos need to be even cheaper for people to play with it, but guess we will see.
    The rest are neat.

  14. Renoforfun
    May 12, 2021 at 10:22 am

    Everything make sense, except hysteria, not sure that is was actually required. The biggest buff is nzoth. It will make a HUGE difference.

  15. WhipWhap
    May 12, 2021 at 10:06 am

    Really glad they just nerfed Mankrik, Consumed by Hatred instead of Mankrik himself. Would’ve stopped playing him if they upped his mana cost.

  16. Sonriks6
    May 12, 2021 at 9:29 am

    And only 500 dust refund… Unless you have a Golden Mankrik..

  17. ZergVolution
    May 12, 2021 at 9:26 am

    “the buff increase dh” = a 2/2 become a 3/2 WOOOOOOW now i have a 3 2 in my collection and not only a 2/2.

    Deck of chaos is useless the same circle… Lock get a nerf cause hysteria’s nerf has less impact on priest.

    I see only 1 buff in all of this – > nzoth.

    Ok with nerfs,only hysteria has no sense…i was hoping on alexstrasza and the mage spell that reduce costs in the deck, but ok…

    • Zamaz1097
      May 12, 2021 at 9:46 am

      I agree the buffs are super random but, in terms of mage Blizzard doesn’t want to kill a deck that overperforms it just wants to reign it in to be more in line with other classes. Nerfing spring water will do enough that it will be good but not unfair but if they nerfed incanters flow as well the archetype would be dead.

    • 2asandab
      May 12, 2021 at 2:09 pm

      No – I think there was a clear clamoring in the community for deathboar to get bumped to 3/2. I mean the “noise” was almost as great as fiendish circle at 3 mana.

      But in all seriousness, you do sit there sometimes and think – where do they come up with this stuff. Unbound elemental?

  18. INeedHealing123
    May 12, 2021 at 9:25 am

    Yeah nerf priest and warlock because they are so fucking good right now

  19. Sonriks6
    May 12, 2021 at 9:23 am

    I see first day as a buff I mean extra value is often good despite the tempo lose in the early game. Paladin will remain strong after all and Spell Mage too (Flow was the problem). The other buffs aren’t enough to address Shaman issues.

    • Stonekeep - Site Admin
      May 12, 2021 at 10:55 am

      It might be a buff in some mid-late game scenarios, but the biggest strength of 0 mana version was the fact that it was an amazing 1-drop. You definitely don’t want to pay 1 extra mana for a random 1-drop in faster Paladin decks.

  20. Ginnel
    May 12, 2021 at 9:11 am

    I can’t see anything in the buffs that will elevate none rush warrior decks or shaman decks.

  21. Morgloth19
    May 12, 2021 at 9:04 am

    why hysteria? 🙁

    • Morgloth19
      May 12, 2021 at 9:10 am

      I’m really disappointed that warlock is getting a nerf

      • Noelle
        May 12, 2021 at 9:18 am

        I’m disappointed that Priest is getting a huge nerf as well.

        • 2asandab
          May 12, 2021 at 2:19 pm

          It may still play fine at 4 mana, we’ll see. I don’t play priest but usually I’m happy when somebody drops 1 of their hysterias on turn 3 because I know it’s one less weapon they have for end game.

          How about the xanesh buff – worth anything to you? Didn’t even realize the nuance there tbh.

    • Electronick
      May 12, 2021 at 9:59 am

      Frequency of play of Warlock for what isn’t a great play experience for the opponent and if you touch warlock you need to touch priest as well.
      Vicious Syndicate’s podcast rightly predicted this exact nerf and explained why they had to hit both.