Marvel Snap Jan. 19, 2024 OTA Update Explained

Every couple of weeks, Second Dinner pushes out an over-the-air update for Marvel Snap. These are usually just numerical changes rather than full card text changes like we usually get in the full patches. However, they can also shake up the meta significantly. Here’s everything you need to know about Marvel Snap’s Jan. 19 OTA update.

All Changes in Marvel Snap’s Jan. 19 OTA Update

The headline here is, Blob has been nerfed! I know I just said OTA updates don’t usually include card text changes, but this is an exception.

After dominating the Marvel Snap meta ever since it dropped late last year, Second Dinner is finally knocking Blob down a peg. As a 6-Cost card that could eke out at least 30 Power if you played your cards right each time, Blob has been a menace.

The rest of the cards included in this OTA update have been buffed. Hercules, who only just released last week, got a slight Power bump. Elektra, Viper, Selene, and Destroyer have all been bumped up as well, and we should start seeing them a bit more going forward.

Here are the full changes:

Blob

  • [Old] 6/4 – On Reveal: Merge your deck into this. (and gain its total Power) Ongoing: Can’t be moved.
  • [New] 6/0 – On Reveal: Merge cards from your deck into this until it gains 15 or more Power. Ongoing: Can’t be moved.

Blob has been a metagame terror for a good minute, so the only surprising thing about this change is probably that it includes a text adjustment within the OTA. This card threatens to create absurd amounts of Power, and “release valves” in the format like Shang-Chi and Shadow King have proven wholly insufficient in restraining that. The latter is a fair bit on us–internally, we feared being so easily dusted by (at the time) 2/3 Shadow King, one of the strongest cards in the metagame, would be too punishing for the new card. But times changed, and it turns out that 4 “defensive” Power was totally unnecessary!

It was important to retain a couple key elements of Blob. The first was rewarding eating large amounts of Power, especially from high-Power cards. The second was keeping the total Power of Blob variable for the opponent, to make the card more difficult to combat directly. This change accomplishes both, creating different Blobs depending on the order of the cards in your deck. It also weakens Blob in Thanos specifically, as smaller-Power cards are more likely to land closer to the threshold. Lastly, it adds an easy dial for us to tune–if our math on the right targets for Blob were wrong, the combination of base Power and this threshold give us room to adjust further.

Destroyer

  • [Old] 6/15 – On Reveal: Destroy your other cards.
  • [Change] 6/15 -> 6/16

This change is reverting a nerf to Destroyer from a while ago. The general Power values in the game have improved even among Series 1 and Series 2, where Destroyer’s impact was most felt. We’ll continue evaluating the relative Power of 6-Cost cards throughout the year, and expect to make more changes.

Viper

  • [Old] 3/4 – On Reveal: One of your other cards here switches sides.
  • [Change] 3/4 -> 3/5

We took a conservative approach to adjusting Viper over the holidays for reasons related specifically to Havok, and fortunately those fears were unfounded. However, we’ve decided to keep Viper at 3-Cost for a few reasons. One is that it lets Viper more naturally combo with locations like Savage Land or Shadowland, which reveal on turn 3 one-third of the time. Another is that it increases the design space for building cards like The Hood as 2-Cost cards, because Viper can gift them on-curve.

Selene

  • [Old] 1/-1 – On Reveal: On Reveal: Afflict the lowest-Power card in each player’s hand with -3 Power.
  • [Change] 1/-1 -> 1/2

Selene was originally designed to explicitly combo with Viper and Black Widow, which is part of why her own Power was negative–it increased the risk/reward of these strong combinations. However, it turns out that subsequent changes to Viper and Black Widow also weakened these combinations plenty, and Annihilus hasn’t been much of a factor for Selene, either. So we’re adding some Power here to let the card better stand on its own.

Elektra

  • [Old] 1/1 – On Reveal: Destroy an enemy 1-Cost card here.
  • [Change] 1/1 -> 1/2

We’ve explored a variety of directions for improving Elektra, and we’ll likely continue doing so. Elektra has an amazing story and a lot of great variants, but also plays an important role in teaching new players about sequencing cards and managing different locations. We’ve wanted to improve Elektra for a while to make this iconic character more enjoyable, but don’t want to lose out on that important function for early play. For now, we’re just giving additional Power and seeing how that goes.

Dazzler

  • [Old] 3/2 – Ongoing: +2 Power for each location that’s full on your side.
  • [Change] 3/2 -> 2/2

Dazzler is another card that could use some shine. Our intention with the initial change to 3-Cost Dazzler was to see if Silver Surfer players would be excited to pair Dazzler with Brood, but things haven’t worked out that way. So it’s time to try something else! Dazzler as a card rewards playing efficiently so that you can get all your cards out, which means an Energy reduction should be helpful.

Hercules

  • [Old] 4/6 – The first time another card moves here each turn, move it to another location.
  • [Change] 4/6 -> 4/7

Hercules released weaker than we’d like, so we’re adding a little Power. Our goal remains to try and find an execution that builds an interesting “move card” at 4-Cost, because diversifying the strategic options across more Costs is key for ensuring we have a lot of gameplay variety. We may consider revising the effect in the future if it proves unworkable at this Cost.

Dagger

  • [Old] 2/2 – When this moves to a location, +2 Power for each enemy card there.
  • [New] 2/0 – When this moves to a location, +3 Power for each enemy card there.

Speaking of move cards, Dagger has been one of the weaker ones for a while. We’d like there to be some extra competition and strength for the archetype, so we’re trying a change here that sizably increases the Power potential. This does make Dagger weaker to Shadow King, so it’s not all upside, but overall it should improve players’ options “moving” forward.

About the author

Zhiqing Wan

Zhiqing is the Reviews Editor for Twinfinite, and a History graduate from Singapore. She’s been in the games media industry for nine years, trawling through showfloors, conferences, and spending a ridiculous amount of time making in-depth spreadsheets for min-max-y RPGs. When she’s not singing the praises of Amazon’s Kindle as the greatest technological invention of the past two decades, you can probably find her in a FromSoft rabbit hole.

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