Hand-swapping ‘Hearthstone’ card Mindrender Illucia is getting nerfed

No more hand-swapping

Mindrender Illucia, a card that has been used by Priest players to terrorise Hearthstone games, is being nerfed in patch 21.3.

While Mindrender Illucia previously allowed players to swap their hand and deck with opponents until the next turn, PC Gamer has spotted that balance issues mean the card is getting a totally new battlecry.

Instead of entirely swapping cards, Mindrender Illucia will now “replace your hand with a copy of your opponent’s until end of turn”.


These changes address an issue where Priest players were using Mindrender Illucia to effectively skip an opponent’s turn, allowing whoever played the card to get a free turn to do whatever.

Explaining why the change has been made in the full patch notes, developers at Blizzard have said the following:

“With the refinement of Shadow Priest in recent weeks, Mindrender Illucia has been overperforming in the archetype, in an unintended way. Instead of being used as a late game disruption tool, Shadow Priests have been using Illucia as an early game play to essentially skip the opponent’s turn.”

With the new iteration of Illucia in Hearthstone, the intention is that it will remove “problematic gameplay from Illucia, while still keeping her in a similar space with her effect”.

A post highlighting the change over at the Hearthstone subreddit currently sits at almost 3000 upvotes, though fans are divided over whether or not the change is a little too heavy-handed. One user comments that “this nerf just seems like they wanted the card gone for good”, while someone else argues that “the core idea of the card wasn’t fun for the opponent…I’m glad that this card is finally losing that”.


In other news, Activision Blizzard is being investigated by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission due to how the publisher has handled a lawsuit alleging sexual harassment and workplace misconduct.