Elden Ring has received a new patch with a couple of significant balance changes which players need to know right away.
According to patch notes 1.03 from earlier today, Hoarfrost Stomp has been nerfed to do reduced damage with an increased cast time. The notes do not attach any numbers to the nerf but some players are stating that Hoarfrost Stomp does around 50 percent reduced damage after the patch.
Hoarfrost Stomp was often hailed for being too overpowered, particularly by streamers. Its nerf will likely come as a significant blow for players who were building their characters around the skill. While the nerf should not be taken as a death sentence for the skill, a 50 percent damage nerf will probably convince a lot of players to look elsewhere for their damage needs.
Furthermore, patch 1.03 increases the drop rate of Smithing Stones “for some enemies” while making them available for purchase at “some early game shop lineup”. What the patch notes do not mention is that Smithing Stones have had their prices severely reduced.
At least a couple of players have confirmed that the Twin Maiden Husks are now selling Smithing Stones at a far lower price than before. Smithing Stone  for example has gone from costing 12,000 Runes to just 3600 Runes.
The new pricing will perhaps be the best change introduced with the new patch. Elden Ring made it quite hard to fully upgrade a weapon. Purchasing all of those Runes has just become an option for players looking to escape further grinds.
Elsewhere, patch 1.03 gives players the option of marking characters and locations on the map but only after exploring or encountering them. The feature will now make it easier for players to remember all of the non-playable characters they have to frequently visit now and then.
Elden Ring is now available on PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X, Xbox Series S, and PC.