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Please look at Poison again

Poison is one of the oldest, if not the first status effect in this game, but now it is on the verge of being obsolete.
I think at one point it used to fire 100% per turn (not sure about this, was b4 my time), but that was nerfed because at the time the prevalent Max Life was lower than 20.

I think in light of the massive Life buff since then, it is time to return Poison to its original state, or better. When most of the creatures at max level and max buff can easily break 40 health, a 50% trigger rate Poison really has very little presence on the field.

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I don’t know what poison was originally like, but I know that it was buffed back in 1.0.9 to allow it to kill. I’m not sure how long it’s been exempt from auto-cleanse. I do think the 50% chance makes it very unreliable – it lends itself very well to recall bias. It often feels like it takes effect close to 100% of the time on your own troops, and close to never on enemy troops.

It’s still pretty powerful in arena, particularly since you can’t be sure of having a reliable cleanse available. I do think it should either scale with something, perhaps enemy health, and it should tick more reliably, if not 100% of the time.


Poison, regeneration, reinforced, invigorated, big, huge and others could see a rework to at certain tiers, maybe scaling with the card rarity, generate more value. Like:

  • Commons/Rare: “Basic” trait, would do 1 damage. (Using poison as example.)
  • Ultra-rare: “Advanced” trait so it would deal 2 damage.
  • Epic: “Master” trait so it would deal 3 damage.
  • Legendary “Legendary” trait = 4 damage.
  • Mythic: “Mytic” trait = 5 damage.

I’ve also seen suggestions of scaling based on 5-10% of the total stat being attacked/buffed.

Ideally it would work adding % for each troop, but to keep things easier to remember i believe basing it on the card rarity would be better, easier to remember and identify that a Mythic have a stronger poison.

We need to bear in mind Arena, and lower level players.

A scaling mechanism - like @tacet and I have suggested before - keep the 50% proc chance, but make damage equal to 10% of current Life.


10% damage based on current life makes no sense. It would never kill a troop and it feels like it’s fading or the troop is suffering less and less from it, and on top of that with only 50% chance of triggering… Ugh…

As I see would had worked is that the minimum poison damage would be 1(f.example if enemy troop has 9 life left or less), that way enemies can get killed by poison.

If it wouldn’t make the in-game explanation very extense, and convulated, a mix of 10% damage based on current life total but with a minimum damage based on the rarity would keep it at an acceptable risky level to me at least.

Maybe we aren’t taking the whole problem as we should, because one factor that increases the trouble is how easy it is to gain life with spells, something that also makes the life gain traits look so pale… I think the creation of a new effect is due:

Corrupted: Prevents healing, life gain and natural cleansing of negative effects on the aflicted troop.

This is something that i would like to see added on Plague’s spell, not that i don’t like the part of decreasing skills, but disease just doesn’t feels enough as a mythic effect…

I believe Tacet’s idea was “10% of current life every turn, bottom capped at 1 life every other turn”, which would make sense, but still make it slightly stronger in Arena.

Since it is the only “permanent” status, I’d rather see some extra synergy with it, both with extra damage and other things (conditional board mod, extra turns, etc). Also wouldn’t hurt to throw in a “double skull damage if poisoned” trait. Just look at all the synergy for Frozen in addition to it being a strong status effect. Yes, the fact that poison doesn’t auto cleanse could make synergies like this potentially very powerful, but by no means stronger than other stuff that is already in the game. This would go a long way toward making poison based teams viable and still their own thing, whereas just increasing its scaling would make it more likely “toss in a poison troop to true damage team”.

I think it makes sense just fine. Plenty of games model poison as a percentage of life / hp.

I had intended 10% of current life, with a minimum of 1, so troops can indeed die from it.

Could be viable with 100% proc each turn, or maybe 50% proc of 20% life damage.

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It’s a bit more complicated than that…
A troop with 50 of health: (Rounding down the numbers)

  • 50 = 5
  • 45 = 4
  • 41 = 4
  • 37 = 3
  • 34 = 3
  • 31 = 3
  • 28 = 2
  • 26 = 2
  • 24 = 2
  • 22 = 2
  • 20 = 2
    From 18 to 0 it would take more 18 turns, IF, this suggested mechanic for poison would trigger at 100% chance… If we round up the numbers like turning 2,8 into a 3 it would still take too long to kill a troop even if there is no cleanse, healing or Life gain.

A damage based on a percentage of health in other games works because it uses the total health since these games, usually, have no mechanics allowing extra health to be gained unlike GoW.

Damn, even my previous suggestion caping at 5 damage based on the poison of a Mythic troop would take long to kill a troop, but at least the poison doesn’t goes on causing less damage over time, and that’s what really bothers me…

It’s like:

  • 5 poison damage: AAAAHHH!!! PAIN RUNS IN MY VEINS!!!
  • 3 poison damage: Urrrgh… I’m no Barbearius but i must bear the pain.
  • 2 poison damage: I’m feeling a little sick, maybe i should stop eating those hotdogs sold at Zaejin.
  • 1 poison damage: It tickles…

Well how much damage would you like it to do?

How long should poison take to kill a troop?

When poison first appeared in the game (since the very start) it could kill a troop in 5-10 turns.

Nowadays poison is largely irrelevant, outside of Arena.

I agree that it’d be good if it was more meaningful.

Another suggested change would be 10% of maximum Life then - but allow it to wear off like burn and other status effects do.

Yes, this too. And no more troops with synergy on freeze, it’s everywhere as it is, anyway.

Poison were pretty good once, did some catchy pop rock tunes. Nothin but a good time, your mamma don’t dance, fallen angel and something to believe in were my particular faves.

With these “rarity tiers” mechanic some cards would do a decent damage right out like Webspinner, Shadow Dragon, Venoxia and Manticore (poison + burn) making them much more valuable. Maybe it would require more troops with cleanse effects to make it safer or just allow poison to wear-off if it triggers at 100% or leave the 50% to trigger. It would require some testing that only de Devs could make to see what feels right. Also as Invigorated and Regeneration would also scales from the card’s rarity, following my suggestion you could “endure” the poison with some cards, as well as making Sturdy less useless.

Yeah this would work if the game always calculates based on the current max health since we can gain extra health quite easily. I’m sure some people would still not understand why the damage from poison would increase as they keep increasing the life total of the troops, but i wouldn’t allow it wear off like Burning.

I want a deadly mechanic, but not ridiculous as Death Mark, if you are poisoned with no ways to remove it you are on the clock to win this battle in more or less ten turns. You can keep healing the troops and prolong your time as it becomes more challenging.

i agree poison should be either buffed (increasing chance or amount of damage)
or gain an extra effect which is: lowering healing (and life gaining) effects on the poisoned units by half

in the second couse, it could be a pair with disease whereas disease would also get a 50% chance to drain 1 mana besides the built in lowering mana gain by half.

i think that kind of pairing would be cool and bring both debuffs back to being noticable threat

(going further this way we could get a debuff “rusted” lowering armor gain by half and having armor damage chance every turn)


A third option would be to allow poison to stack. Some troops are quite good at repeatedly applying poison, which currently tends to be a wasted effort since it never wears off by itself. Just change the health drain to one per stack and poison should be meaningful again. Since we don’t have traits and legendaries within the Arena this should actually turn out to be quite balanced.


I like this - it’s been suggested before too. One challenge would be how to represent the multiple stacks on screen.


Interesting ideas @Annaerith, your “Rusted” debuff certainly would be a nice addition, something i would like to see explored on the “Merfolk kingdom”, it seems fitting as a good warfare tactic against the “land dwellers”. Maybe a troop that applies “Rusted” to all Mechs.

Ok, just because i have a lot of free time today i tried something based on @Fourdottwoone’s suggestion:

First of all, i’m no artist or designer. So yeah, the droplet of poison is a little ugly and the number two is changing places/moving because i made a mistake aligning it…
But considering that i did it all using MSpaint and a online gif maker with no real experience as artist… It ended fairly decent to allow some visualization for this idea.

The number inside the droplet oof poison marks the amount of health to be lost on each round. It doesn’t takes much space from a card and the bottom base could even allow more stacking debuffs that may or may not come to the game in the future. I was really considering a Bleeding/Bloodied Mechanic for Wild Plain’s gnolls and maybe i’ll try to make something like this gif.