Hello everybody and welcome to a new Fan Community Spotlight. This one in particular returns to a previously covered expansion for a third time as we're looking at The Arcane Arcade once again. The last time I covered this was in June of last year after the expansion was updated for a modern flare. In that time, we've received a new Death Knight class and TheFriendlyEnemy has updated the set to also include Death Knight cards. This only consists of 13 cards and I normally wouldn't relegate a whole installment just to an extremely small set of cards for a set update, but given the circumstances of both the set and the class, I believe such an occasion is justified.
Present once again is the Streak mechanic which play themselves again at the start of your turn if you fulfill a requirement, and as long as you keep doing that each turn, the Streak will keep persisting over a long period of time.
As I posted in my previous Card Design Conversation, Death Knight is a class that still has a lot of unexplored design space waiting to be uncovered and a custom expansion is a perfect place to test those waters. If you feel that your archetype can be justified in the class, then you have all the reason to go out and try it out to see if it sticks. Let's see where TheFriendlyEnemy pushes Death Knight in this famous set.
How does it feel to design for Death Knight?
TheFriendlyEnemy: "At the time I designed these cards, the full Death Knight class had not been revealed yet, which led to challenges. When working with incomplete information, I had to take a few guesses about the philosophy of Death Knight’s expansion design, such as what the philosophy towards Rune distributions would be in each set. It almost felt like designing for a partially incomplete custom class, but by following my gut I ended up with a final product I was pretty happy with."
What were you aiming to do with Death Knight in this set?
TheFriendlyEnemy: "The biggest game genre that wasn’t covered in the original 10 Arcane Arcade classes was the roguelike genre. I felt like it deserved to be included in the set, but it wasn’t the most obvious choice for Death Knight. Because of this, my main aim for the Death Knight cards was to justify the choice of genre for the class.
The roguelike genre has players repeatedly run into deadly dungeons, die, and then start a fresh run to try again, all while collecting upgrades. Viewed from the lens of this cycle of death, Death Knight seems like a great fit for the genre. My aim was to use the cards in the set to drive home this point by focusing on resurrection, particularly on repeating effects such as Streaks, as well as on a Hero Power (so you don’t just resummon Ghouls)."
What cards in particular do you want to talk about most?
TheFriendlyEnemy: "The cards that spend Corpses to gain upgrades. Collecting upgrades and growing in power over the course of a roguelike run is a common feature of the genre, and to represent that I took inspiration from another custom Death Knight project. The options of “Freeze enemies damaged by this”, Lifesteal, and Poisonous with increasing Costs were first explored by FrIkY in his custom Death Knight class which was previously featured on Fan Community Spotlight. One common challenge with FrIkY’s Empower was balancing the large tempo loss of the higher Cost options, but in this set, the Mana cost is replaced by Corpses, which makes the expensive options more appealing."
Do you have anything behind the scenes that you wish to share? Do you have anything else you wish to share?
TheFriendlyEnemy: "Not much happened behind the scenes this time, given that the set was designed fairly rapidly after Death Knight’s official reveal. As always, thanks to Demonxz95 for hosting Fan Community Spotlight, and keep a look out for when The Tanaris Report releases."
This was a short one, but I think that's to be expected given the topic we covered. You know the old saying of quality over quantity. This is definitely a fun project and a more-than-worthy addition to this set which has already been given its praise. You can see the whole set and mini-set with the banners below.