Well, it's been an exciting few weeks for Fan Creations here on the site, what with the return of our WCDC. As such, it's been a while since we've had a Fan Community Spotlight! Today, our guest is clukurduk and they'll be telling us about their Gunslingers of Westfall expansion.
Normally we'd have the fantastic Demonxz95 conducting these interviews, but he asked me to take this one since he was somewhat involved in the creative process for it. Now, on to the expansion!
Outlaws abound in the wilds of Westfall, and you never know what you'll run into around the corner. This is exemplified by the expansion's keyword, Disguised. A Disguised minion lies in wait, ready to reveal itself in a daring strike or catch an opponent off-guard when they try to damage it.
This is an interesting theme for a set. How did you decide on it? What's the overarching story of the set?
clukurduk: "So how I think of sets is based on genres. Examples might be how Boomsday Project is sci-fi, or Grand Tournament is fantasy. Well I thought how westerns weren’t really done before this. The closest we have to it is maybe Explorers or Uldum.
The overarching story is very general, but the idea is Westfall has been taken over by Outlaws, and people who try to bring justice. The constant conflict of these two groups is the general story."
How long have you been creating your own cards? What got you into it?
clukurduk: "I have been making cards for a year. I wanted to make a card. It was basically Hallazeal looking back at it, but I didn't know Hallazeal was a card due to me starting playing cards back in Un'Goro."
You introduce a new mechanic, Disguised. What was the inspiration for this? How did you go about designing cards with it?
clukurduk: "So Disguised kinda came from the idea of the cards that were like “This appears as x”. You know the ones that were always brought up as troublesome because of battlecries or cards like Shadow Word: Death. Well I thought this would work because secrets do.
We tried to make a combination of cards that punished if you attacked it, but also cards that you would be punished if you didn’t attack it. On cards like Samuel it also matters what card you trade into it, because if it’s not, then it won’t die."
This expansion deals with such an unusual setting for Hearthstone. What class was the most difficult to translate to Westfall, and why?
clukurduk: "For me it was Mage. Mage doesn’t really seem like something that would be in a western film, but smiles brought up the idea of doing a casino idea. While casinos aren’t specifically western, they do more or less fit, so that’s what we went for."
Hunters gained a Legendary Secret in this expansion. Was there a particular reason you chose to do this? What challenges did designing it present?
clukurduk: "So I didn’t actually make this secret. It was actually Demonx95 who did, but we did all decide to do a legendary secret. When I tried designing it, my main challenge became how to make it still feel legendary with it not being broken and keeping the powerlevel in check. Demon seemed to capture that really well by putting a trigger on it, that made it legendary and balanced at the same time."
Demonxz95: "In terms of designing the Legendary Secret, Secrets were just on my mind at the time and since we were making a Hunter Legendary spell, I thought making a Legendary Secret would be a cool idea. I saw the artwork, and thought of Ice Block, and the idea just kinda hit me. The name "Drunhei" comes from "Heidrun", a Norse mythological goat. The whole card just kinda "happened".
There are so many interesting cards in the set. What are some of your personal favourites, and why?
clukurduk: "My top cards for the set are the ones that are like “Choose a minion. Do x to all other minions.” I think they're quite interesting personally. I really like Samuel “Six Shooter” because people have been trying to figure out how to give your hero attack on the opponent's turn. I think this is good because it’s on a minion that can be destroyed."
Do you have anything behind the scenes you wish to share?
clukurduk: "A lot of people helped with the project, main people being smiles, Zozoth, and Demonx95. I couldn’t have finished it without them, and there were others that also helped."
What design philosophies do you have? What do you wish to spread to future creators?
clukurduk: "So when I design cards my goal is not to make cards that would be competitively viable, but to make cards that are intellectually intriguing. Anyone can make another Fireball or Execute, but I think to make cards that have in game implications other than “Wow that won me the match” or “That felt good to play” is harder and a better way to design."
Do you have anything else you wish to share?
clukurduk: "We’re currently in the process of finishing a second set so stay tuned for that. Smiles will be the head of that and I assume he will want to post it."
That's a wrap on this Fan Community Spotlight. Give the full set a gander and share your thoughts with us.
Don't forget to check out our WCDCs! Demon'll be back next time with another great set.