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The Global Defense Nerf, usually abbreviated GDN, is the colloquial name for a set of changes made to improve the balance in survivability between heroes with large amounts of Defense and those using other defensive strategies. It became effective as part of Issue 5, where it was officially referred to as the Global Defense Reduction.


The GDN involved two global changes:

  • Nearly every power in the game that provided a Defense bonus had that bonus reduced to 3/5ths of its previous amount.
  • Every villain Rank above Minion had its base chance of hitting heroes reduced.
    • Lieutenants and Snipers were reduced from 62.5% to 57.5%.
    • Bosses were reduced from 75% to 65%.
    • Archvillains and Giant Monsters were reduced from 90% to 75%.
    • Elite Bosses, several villain pets, and some other special cases were similarly reduced (see patch notes).

The net result was that a hero received less protection from Defense-buffing powers than before, but he was less likely to be hit in many combat situations to begin with.

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