Well, that was a hectic release schedule wasn't it? I must admit, I did enjoy the fast paced release of cards combined with not having to organise the reviews of them myself - even if it did mean I didn't have any time to get this done yesterday! Honestly, I still haven't even had the time to properly sit down and look at all the new cards beyond the ones I reviewed - something to look forward to after this!
Our Conversation this time sends us off at the end of this Season!
Pick A Card
Our final WCDC winner of Season 2 is linkblade91 and their Ixtal, Game Master! Congratulations!
They'll be in charge of our second theme of Season 3, which will be sometime before the next Hearthstone Year, don't you worry.
Know Your Name
We've made it to the end of Season 2 of the WCDC! We made a few changes to the way the system worked for this Season and I think they were all for the better. I already know one idea I'd like to implement for Season 3, but feedback is always welcome so reply here - or even just message me directly - with any suggestions.
The Fan Community Spotlight this week takes a look back at the whole of the Season - it's amazing to think that we started all the way back in August! Then again, that whole period of time tends to blur together a bit now. You could've told me we'd started in March and I'd have accepted that as pretty likely.
I'm gonna take this time to praise my favourite winner from this Season - for the second time, I believe, I think I talked about how much I liked them the week after they won. Competition #6 - Deep Sea Designing gave us Arkasaur as a winner, with their Blood in the Water.
We'd had the concept of Dual Class cards for some time now by this competition - Competition #2 was based around them entirely, for example - but this is still one of my favourite designs to utilise the mechanic. The class combination of Hunter and Warrior is interesting, but they don't take it in an obvious direction like weapon synergy; despite that, the card works very well mechanically as a combination of Warrior's 'damaged' synergies and Hunter's Beast synergies, wrapped in a neat little bow of a suddenly attacking minion which feels appropriate for both classes.
Beyond that, the flavour of the card is perfect. The damaged minion bleeds, attracting a Shark to attack it. The art too is an inspired choice, feeling very Hearthstone appropriate and managing to fit the Dual Class combination fantastically. It's also just a really nice, clean card that works as a Common, something that creators sometimes struggle with.
Anyway, I won't ramble on about this one card any longer. Make sure you check out the FCS at the link above to see all the wonderful winners this Season, as well as some fun facts and stats!
Normally at this point I'd be talking about next week's competition, but we've reached the end of the Season! I've already asked for your suggestions for future competitions, so instead I think I'll gush a little bit about Darkmoon Races.
I love the basic concept of Darkmoon Races, and before it Galakrond's Awakening - beyond an injection of cards in the middle of an expansion cycle, they're a celebration of an entire year of Hearthstone, pulling mechanics together to create unique and interesting cards that you'd otherwise only have seen in the world of Fan Creations.
All these variations on mechanics from the first two sets of the year combined with the Corrupt mechanic are fantastic to see. Without a set like this these kinds of things wouldn't have a chance of being seen until years down the line, if and when Hearthstone decides to revisit any of these mechanics. It's the kind of cards you imagine as a card designer, thinking of how you'd perfectly blend two mechanics that never got a chance to interact - at least on the same card.
I'm very tempted to look at previous Hearthstone years and try and create my own little mini-sets that encapsulate them as a whole. SN1P-SN4P was like a weird precursor to the idea almost, combining Echo and Magnetic; at the time I wasn't a fan of it because it felt so out of place, but as a capstone to a Hearthstone year I think the idea works far better.
Something to think about while we take a break before Season 3! I hope you all enjoyed this Season as much as I did, and I can't wait to see you all back again for the next one - whenever that may be.