Onyxia's Lair has been out for a few days now, and we've (hopefully) been having fun with the way the new cards have impacted the game. Today on Fan Community Spotlight, we take a look at a Duels hero for one of the major characters of the set, Kazakusan. I guess someone was inspired by the Lazul Duels hero installment enough to give their own crack at it, and that's exactly what we have here. Kazakusan is a Rogue/Warlock dual-class hero for the mode made by Neoguli who is now making their ninth appearance on this column and you can look at the project here.

If you were still a little bit unsure if you wanted to make your own Duels hero after the installment on the Lazul hero, then here you've got some extra incentive. With that said, let's begin!

Describe Kazakusan's design for us. How were you inspired to design him in the way that you did? How did you arrive on the current Hero Powers and Treasure cards?

Neoguli: "Kazakusan is a dual-class hero for Duels akin to Diablo. It still uses Warlock cards, but this time alongside Rogue. It plays into his sinister and grim nature, using sorcery and subtlety to deceive and dismantle her opponents. He also can use his own card from the latest mini-set to dig for Treasures she delights in, and in Duels, he feels right at home.

My main inspiration for the concept were the last FCS and the thematic set of four cards in the mini-set - Scale of Onyxia, Horn of Wrathion, Tooth of Nefarian, Spawn of Deathwing. Both were subsequently my inspiration for the first four treasures, drawing inspiration from Lazul’s four Old Gods treasures to make Treasures based on those exact four cards I mentioned.

Now onto specifics:

  • Counterfeit Portal - all-around useful Hero Power for card draw purposes, but it can draw a ton more, as it first draws cards that didn’t start in your deck. Good for either fetching C’Thun, the Shattered or Casts When Drawn cards.
  • Fel Summoning - obligatory Warlock QL support and a tempo tool to summon durable minions. With the rather worthwhile trade of 2 HP for a 3/3 Imp, it also plays into Rogue’s tempo playstyle.
  • Staff of Gore - obligatory Discard synergy, but it has a Combo effect to let you get something from other classes. Warlock discards, Rogue finds stuff from the colloquial void.

  • Black Emperor Wrathion - based on his Horn, instead drawing a card and having an effect that turns card draw into a control tool with the endless spawn of Whelps. Combine this with both Rogue’s and Warlock’s theme of shuffling Casts When Drawn cards and you’re sure to overwhelm enemies.
  • Black Lord Nefarian - based on his Tooth, instead having a pseudo-Tess effect of replaying spells from other classes. I dunno if he should consider cards from the class that appears more in your starting deck - same for Staff of Gore, but I think it should to create spectacular highlights for Kazakusan pilots.
  • Black Scourge Deathwing - based on his Spawn, instead providing an endless wave of mass AoE as long as he’s discarded. In tandem with Staff of Gore on an empty hand, you can double down on the AoE to deal with Deathrattle Hunter, and get a spell.
  • Black Daughter Onyxia - based on her Scale, instead having herself Rush and fitting into a more Handlock-y gameplan. She’s reverse Rats of Extraordinary Size, instead letting you hoard on her Whelps if need be.
  • Prismatic Alchemy - plays in the theme of copying stuff from both classes. With a fair bit of spell schools between both classes, you can either duplicate your control tools or add more Poisons. :>
  • Unholy Fang - a weapon to synergise with Poison and Deathrattle stuff. One thing to note is the card scaling not only with wins, but also the attacks. That way, you can get a large minion on turn 5 at least, or even turn 4 with Grommash's Armguards. With the Deathrattle attached, it also adds resilience to weapon hate later down the road, and there are also cards like Counterfeit Blade and Sketchy Information to further bolster the effect."

How do you navigate the challenges of designing for Duels as opposed to any other game mode?

Neoguli: "Duels is a specific mode, throwing certain rules upon you. Your hero needs to stand out with their Hero Powers and Treasures to augment their class’ fantasy and enable a multitude of familiar, standard HS playstyles that are enhanced in Duels. For Kazakusan specifically, I wanted to capture possibilities you could get from matching Rogue with Warlock, and those, alongside inspirations from Horn, Scale, Spawn and Tooth, went along to make a thematic and fun hero."

Do you have anything behind the scenes that you wish to share?

Neoguli: Nothing really. I am nowhere near as active on creating custom HS cards, but I have made a few for Legends of Runeterra. Right now, they are limited to champions from LoL that are yet to appear in LoR, but they are on r/CustomLoR.

Do you have anything else you wish to share?

Neoguli: "I hope you’re staying safe and healthy. The pandemic is seemingly going to end, or at least the world is not as isolated as it used to be in 2020. Do your best in life, don’t give up, live as if you wanted to live several “this moments” as opposed to immersing into one. :D"

A shorter one this time around, but I hope you had fun all the same. At the time this article goes live, we're still on our final competition of season 4 and our next Fan Community Spotlight will be recapping everything that happened this season.

Click the banner below to check out the forum thread for this project and let us know what you think either in this article or in that thread. With 2 articles on Duels creations, you may be even more inspired than before to give your own Duels creation a chance.