Design a Card

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Phi
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Re: Design a Card

Postby Phi » 02 Mar 2016, 19:44

Note that it doesn't say "exile from the game". It is just exiled, period. They have to leave the room and / or country.

As for the idiots, I will leave that to the judge call.
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Re: Design a Card

Postby SixFootTurkey » 04 Mar 2016, 03:39

Erm... not that I mind ludicrous mechanics (they're quite enjoyable), but trying to define them within existing mtg rules is a lost cause.
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Re: Design a Card

Postby MowDownJoe » 08 Mar 2016, 06:21

So, I thought I'd take a stab at what I predict Arlinn Kord would look like.

http://imgur.com/a/rxBbz

Really, I have no idea what a good +1 would look like. Something different from the other RG planeswalkers. And the stats on the backside could be different, but still...
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Re: Design a Card

Postby Aarhg » 08 Mar 2016, 19:49

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How would you evaluate this? Is it too strong for the cost, or is the effect justifiably tough to make full use of to not be bonkers?
You can compare it to Repay in Kind. Apocalypse Rider is arguably much, much better, but I think Repay in Kind is overcosted by a fair amount. It needs a lot of dangerous setup to be good, and you probably wouldn't even cast it early game if it was cheaper to get out.
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Re: Design a Card

Postby SixFootTurkey » 09 Mar 2016, 12:11

@MowDownJoe

The specification that counters remain on the permanent is unnecessary - that is the default behavior of transforming a card. I would add RG color identifiers to the reverse side.

An interesting note, with the rule changes coming in SOI, her ultimate will not allow you to put a non-DFC werewolf onto the battlefield.

Okay, I'm intrigued by this concept, here's my take, using yours as a starting point:

"""
[Day Side] 2RG
Planeswalker - [Type]
+1: Put a 1/1 Human Werewolf onto the battlefield.
+0: Transform ~.
-2: Until the end of the turn, Werewolves you control get +2/+0, lose all abilities, and lose all creature types other than Werewolf.
[2]


[Night Side]
[RG indicator] Legendary Creature - Werewolf
~'s power and toughness are each equal to the number of loyalty counters on her.
If ~ would be dealt damage, prevent that damage and remove that many loyalty counters from her, and transform her at the beginning of the next end step.
*/*
"""

This was just a brief prototype, and there are probably a few too many ideas crammed in it, but it's to throw ideas out, not have a final idea. (It's definitely too wordy in its current iteration.)
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Re: Design a Card

Postby SixFootTurkey » 09 Mar 2016, 12:22

@Aarhg

If you consider Repay in Kind to be even remotely usable (even with extreme build around), then Apocalypse Rider is beyond broken. You have reduced the CMC by 3 on top of putting it on a stick (attaching it to a creature).

If you have any way of getting yourself to 1-3 life (not particularly difficult, considering fetch and pain lands, phyrexian mana, and the fact that you can play aggro cards that hit everyone), you can have the two card combo of Rider with Chandra's Ignition to kill everyone other than you for 9 mana. The curve is pretty convenient at 4 into 5 as well. By virtue of being on a creature, there are now more things that allow you to cheat it out (for less mana that it would cost), getting the ETB effect more cheaply. Or combining it with something like Lich (instant win at 4BBBBBB) or Phyrexian Unlife to keep you in the game until you play the Rider.

Not being able to cast Repay early isn't all that makes it risky, it's also not being able to hold up other spells or easily play it with other spells in the same turn.
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Re: Design a Card

Postby Aarhg » 09 Mar 2016, 13:01

@SixFootTurkey

You're probably right, man. Having such an expensive effect on a pretty good stick is kinda asking for trouble.

What if the ETB effect said: "When NAME enters the battlefield, you may pay 2BB. If you do, do the life thing"? That would make it a tad more reasonable, and the creature would get some added versatility (when compared to simply upping the cost of the card). It might need to be adjusted a little more than that, but I don't dislike this way of fixing it.

EDIT: Something like this?
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Re: Design a Card

Postby SixFootTurkey » 09 Mar 2016, 13:50

It makes it more expensive sure, but also removes its only possible downside.

Maybe just something like "When ~ enters, each player's life total becomes the lowest life total among all players unless an opponent pay's [some amount] of life"?

That would do a fair amount towards balancing it. (You can't play it without worry when your opponent has the lowest health, and you also can't use it to instantly negate all prior life gain.)
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Re: Design a Card

Postby Tinfish » 16 Mar 2016, 14:45

I was thinking how I don't really like most black planeswalkers. Well, really I don't like Liliana - after Ob Nixilis' story in Uncharted Realms I find myself kinda liking him for some reason. So I thought I'd invent someone less obnoxious, with a more intellectual bent:

Evren, Death Scholar

3BB

4 loyalty

+1: draw a card, then put the top two cards of your library into your graveyard.

-3: return a creature card from your graveyard to the battlefield.

-7: you gain an emblem which says "creatures you control have indestructible and deathtouch".

The plus ability was originally going to be "sacrifice a creature: draw cards equal to its power" ... but then I realized that that was crazy powerful. The minus ability is there to protect Evren, of course, as well as be a potent ability on its own. I'm not sure on the cost, though - -2 seemed too low, but I think -3 is maybe too high?

The ultimate is maybe underpowered - sure, it turns all your creatures into unkillable killing machines, and I think it does a good job of representing Evren unlocking the secrets of life and death, but it's also fairly expensive, requiring you to not use the minus ability for four turns, and it does nothing if you have no other creatures. So I'm not sure about the cost.

I'm also not entirely sure about the colour identity - black is obvious, but I toyed with black/blue (Death scholar, after all) or black/white (since white also does stuff with the graveyard on occasion).
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Re: Design a Card

Postby WP&P » 17 Mar 2016, 18:39

I like where you're going with this black walker. I'll start by commenting on the middle ability; I do think that -3 is too expensive. I'd rather see it as -2, so that for the casting cost of the walker you could get two uses straight up. The way to dial it in, though, would be to restrict the size of what it can reanimate: maybe "-2: Return a creature card with converted mana cost 4 or less to the battlefield", or you could limit based on power or toughness.

At first I didn't like the +1 ability that much, but the more I consider it that more I think it fits the flavor as well as the functionality. But maybe it could be a bit more Forbidden Alchemy-y: "+1: Draw three cards, then put two of those cards into your graveyard." That way, you get to load up the yard for the second ability. It's like he's a reanimator deck on a stick!

I'm okay with the last ability, though it feels a bit like there is an opportunity for something a bit more exciting. Maybe instead of indestructible, they get first strike... still hard to kill, but not impossible; then you could cost it less. Or...

A totally different idea might be to have him learn how to do Dark Rituals, an old boon card they're never going to reprint. How about "-7: You get an emblem with '[black mana], discard a card: add X black mana to your mana pool, where X is the converted mana cost of the discarded card'." Of course, that late in the game, what are you gonna be ramping up to?
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Re: Design a Card

Postby Tinfish » 19 Mar 2016, 12:51

You make good points. At first I wasn't sure about the draw-and-discard route - it does offer more control of what you pitch - but it is certainly in flavour for black, and blue, which is sort of Evren's "secondary" colour (even though they're mono-black).

As for the minus ability, yeah, that makes sense, and encourages a certain type of deck (IE one with creatures under four CMC) - I like the idea that it forces you to tailor your deck a little. And there are certainly a lot of decent creatures at four or less; do you want Inverter of Truths ... or Siege Rhino?

Your proposed ultimate seems interesting, but not really exciting or in flavour. It might work well on a cheaper green/black planeswalker, something like ...

Elia, Gravetender Dryad
1GB
3 Loyalty

+1: discard a card, then add mana in any combination of green and/or black mana to your mana pool equal to its CMC

-2: exile a creature card from your graveyard, then put into play a number of 1/1 green Saproling tokens equal to that card's CMC

And then some flavour of ultimate, which I'm not sure about. I considered an emblem with "creatures you control get +X+X and death touch, where X is equal to the number of creature cards in your graveyard" ... but of course the +X is a nonbo with the minus ability. Obviously Elia wants to use your graveyard to go wide, and she can easily make Saprolings to pump, so I think the general idea is solid, but it'd probably be better as a static number.

The other obvious problem is that if you can't activate her minus ability immediately - and you might not be able to on turn three - she dies easily. I do like the way the plus ability works with the minus, though; you can discard a creature card to ramp something out, then turn the corpse into Saprolings.

Actually it might be too powerful. Discard a Gurmag Angler or something on turn three to play ... a huge demon of some sort, turn the Gurmangler into Saprolings on turn four, and you're swinging for like six on turn four with a zillion plants to follow it up next turn.
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Re: Design a Card

Postby SixFootTurkey » 21 Mar 2016, 20:41

While I like the idea of an intellectual cut from black cloth, you have to be very careful not straying too far from black's wheelhouse. Take looting and card selection, these are both very blue; black doesn't get access to it without paying an additional cost. (There's a reason the card you are referencing is blue.)

Here's a quick go at it. It's kind of weird, but I like the direction it's going. Also, it ended up being less 'intellectual', as I kept running into blue's territory, so backed off.
(TODO: balancing numbers):

"""
Evren, [title] 2BB
Planeswalker -- Evren

+2: Sacrifice a creature. If you don't, lose 3 life.
-1: Target creature gains lifelink and deathtouch until end of turn. Sacrifice it at the beginning of the next end step.
-8: You get an emblem with "Whenever a creature you control dies, choose one: [*] return that creature to the battlefield. [*] Each opponent sacrifices a creature.

[2 loyalty]
"""
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Re: Design a Card

Postby Tinfish » 21 Mar 2016, 21:03

I'm not against intellectual - the first draft had Evren as 3UB - so eh, it could still work.

Your sacrifice-focused version seems cool, though. It took me a bit to get my head around the all-downside +2 ability. Basically, Evren, Sacrifice Engine seems to be all, and only, about activating that emblem. It's a good emblem, but I'm not sure that it works all that well with the other abilities; it's empowering the creatures you still have left on the battlefield, which is at least -3 creatures (assuming nothing else has died) and the earliest you can get the emblem is turn seven, which is a long time for Evren to sit about, killing things and being a target for removal.

So I'd power up the emblem a little by changing the first choice to "return a creature from your graveyard to the battlefield" - that way you can get back the creatures you sacrificed to power up Evren. This might allow you to cheat out something big if you've got a way of getting a creature into your graveyard without casting it first, but since it won't happen until turn seven and requires another creature to die first, I'd be happy with that.

The other problem is that Evren doesn't have much of a way to protect themself; the +2 and -1 abilities both get rid of creatures, and since the -1 ability can only be activated at sorcery speed it's a purely aggressive move, that removes the creature as a possible blocker on your opponent's next turn.

I can understand that you might not necessarily want to give Evren an ability which creates token creatures, since they'd be possible targets for Evren's +2 ability; but, on the other hand, since you have to take a turn out of powering Evren up to do it - and you are in fact powering them down - I feel like replacing the -1 ability with "create a 1/3 skeleton with deathtouch" or something wouldn't hurt.

The other thing is that I tend to like planeswalkers who can survive activating their ultimate without having to take an extra turn to fatten themselves up, so I'd personally be tempted to increase the starting loyalty to three - but then, this gameplan clearly relies on sacrificing creatures left and right, so it's not necessarily a bad thing to end with Evren sacrificing themself.
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Re: Design a Card

Postby SixFootTurkey » 21 Mar 2016, 21:32

Yeah, I was definitely running into the issue of trying to do too much with it; the first two abilities were more complicated in the first draft, and ended up getting pared down to what they currently are...

I like the -1, but I agree it doesn't really fit with the rest of the kit. I may replace it with a way to return creature cards from the graveyard to your hand.

Edit: Alrighty, take two:

"""
Evren, [title] 1BB
Planeswalker -- Evren

+2: Sacrifice a creature. If you don't, lose 3 life.
-1: Return a creature card from your graveyard to your hand.
-7: You get an emblem with "Whenever a creature you control dies, choose one: [*] return that creature to the battlefield. [*] Each opponent sacrifices a creature.

[2 loyalty]
"""

Dropped the mana cost and ult cost down by one, and swapped out the -1. Thoughts?

(Interestingly enough, the +2 would actually function really well with threaten effects; that's something to keep in mind wrt costing.)
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Re: Design a Card

Postby Tinfish » 21 Mar 2016, 23:47

Oh god, being able to sacrifice other peoples' creatures, yes. Although that does require you to go into red or blue.

I like the new minus ability, recycling your sacrificed creatures is powerful and synergizes well with the +2. I'm not sure how it compares to similar "return creature from graveyard to hand" spells in terms of cost - I feel like it should maybe be a little more expensive? But then it's not "to the battlefield". And if it were -2 instead of -1 you'd kill Evren with it.

Still kinda weak to removal if you play it on curve - turn one you play a one-drop, turn two you play a two-drop, turn three you play Evren, sacrifice the one-drop and have the two-drop to protect on your opponent's next turn. Turn four you play something else and sacrifice the two-drop to Evren, and so on. It's a lot of churn, which would leave you quite vulnerable to an opponent going wider than you; the smart play might be to not play Evren on curve, so you have more mana and creatures to make use of.

Then again, if your creatures have death triggers (like Shambling Goblin's give-another-creature-1-1 ability) having an ever-hungry sac outlet is just straight value.
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Re: Design a Card

Postby WP&P » 22 Mar 2016, 15:37

Why can't the -7 emblem just be straight-up Grave Pact / Dictate of Erebos in Emblem form? No mana cost associated, and also no choice to make. It's really hard to cost the "return the dead guy to play" part of that in a "fair" way ( I know, planeswalker ultimate emblems aren't really about being fair), so I say just ditch it.

And with a "lesser" emblem that just forces opponents to sacrifice, maybe you can even make it cost less, at -6. I sorta like the idea that this p-walker sacrifices itself (unless you take your time and are careful).
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Re: Design a Card

Postby SixFootTurkey » 24 Mar 2016, 19:49

The inspiration for the ultimate was playing around with Tinfish's concept of 'life/death magic'; so you were choosing whether you were using their life essence to return them to life, or sacrificing it to wreak havoc on your opponents.
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Re: Design a Card

Postby WP&P » 30 Mar 2016, 15:55

I have been continuing to develop my custom Magic set as a gift to my sister and her husband, designing cards around the various characters that inhabit their world. If anyone is interested in giving me a more full critique, you can go to my web page and use the search box there for "magic" or "borderlands", and see most of the cards I've made thus far (about 100 cards now).

Anyhow, I came up with this one last night, and I need input as to which approach to take with it. It's based on a friend (last name = Smith) who has twins, so the flavor of it is that it fetches "fraternal twins"... i.e. not exact copies, but born at the same time (as measured by mana cost, or curve). I wanted to make this be an expensive spell, because the subject of the card is a friend who is always late to everything, so I want this to be a late-game spell. It's an instant so that it can be played at the end of opponent's turn, and then theoretically allow the player to cast both of the tutored cards on their turn.

I made an X spell at first, thinking that a player would need to spend about X=5 to get it to work, but then I didn't like the thought of a potential whiff. I know, it's blue so it may be more likely that X=2 with a stacked topdeck!

But then I thought that it could be just a straight 5+U cost, and let the player reveal batches of 5 cards until they get their twins. This has the advantage of potentially making the turn take a long time as the spell is resolving, which would be much in flavor. However, it might also be exploitable.

These cards really don't have to live in any environment outside of this play set, so maybe either is fine, but it does seem like the X version is easier to grok. I tagged on a discard clause on the process-repeater so that it does eventually stop, in the event that there are no twins left in the library.

So, comparing these two, which do you prefer, and might you have any suggestions for cleaning them up?

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Re: Design a Card

Postby TaiyouShinobi » 06 Apr 2016, 15:38

From a playability perspective I'd much rather have the first to dig X when I have mana to dump or am short of six, but can take my chances on a smaller number. Also, since this is Blue (Although this feels more Green), I can potentially set this up with scrying or other tricky blue things, and use less mana to grab the cards I want.
I also like the "repeat" process card on the second, but I don't want to have to keep draining my hand if I keep missing. If you made the "discard a card" a may choice I think I'd like that one more.
But that's just me.
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Re: Design a Card

Postby TaiyouShinobi » 06 Apr 2016, 15:46

Alright. I have a card for you all (I actually have several). Tell me what you think, if it needs reworking or not:
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Re: Design a Card

Postby AdmiralMemo » 06 Apr 2016, 17:55

Seems out of flavor for RW... Needs more Blue. Maybe RU? Both like card draw. Also, both the cost and the activated ability seem a bit undercosted for the effect.

Finally... I think the exiled cards should stay exiled and not get shuffled back in. Removes some of the power of the card, because when you exile and return it, the cards still in exile from the effect are no longer linked to the "new version" of Grand Bazaar, so you can't put them into your hand anymore.

Also works flavor-wise: You had your chance to buy it. You took too long. Someone else has bought it and now it's gone.

I like it in general, though.
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Re: Design a Card

Postby WP&P » 06 Apr 2016, 18:14

I agree with the notion that the set-aside cards should remain in exile. Taking the shuffle-back clause out of the last paragraph helps to simplify the wording, in addition to making the card play in a more interesting way.

Suggested wording for the last paragraph (to get rid of the abundance of "ifs"):

"At the beginning of your end step, sacrifice Grand Bazaar unless you remove a time counter from it. When Grand Bazaar leaves the battlefield, you may pay 1RW; if you do, exile Grand Bazaar then return it to the battlefield under its owner's control."

***

Also, to follow up on my earlier card, I did decide that it really is more of a green thing to go fetch up creatures, and the X card has clearer wording, so I'm going with a green X spell version.
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Re: Design a Card

Postby SixFootTurkey » 06 Apr 2016, 21:57

Obligatory mention of fading - in case you want to use it.

I would pull the LTB triggered ability out and make it into its own ability. That, or otherwise wrap it into a choice that only works for that one resolution. As it is, each end step it will set up a delayed triggered ability, so you'll end up with up to four triggered abilities going off when it finally leaves the battlefield.

If you want it to be tied into being sacrificed rather than otherwise destroyed (which the current wording doesn't do), you could just make a standalone "When ~ is sacrificed" trigger.

I'm not entirely certain where the distinction between enchantments and artifacts is, so I'm not going to worry about which I would make it; leaving it as an artifact at least for now.

@WP&P
The issue with your wording, is that it allows you the choice of cycling or just sacrificing the enchantment if the cards you exiled were suboptimal - allowing you to get around the skip draw step drawback.


[Playing with some ideas, feel free to take or leave as you want. These are going to be a bit different, but in the same general vein of your design. Costs are largely placeholders - I'm more interested in design than development.]

"""
[Thing] UR
Legendary Artifact

If you would draw a card, instead exile the top two cards of your library face down.

R: Reveal a random card exiled by ~. Put that card into your graveyard unless you pay U.

UR: Put a random card exiled by ~ into your hand.
"""

(Edit: tweaking costs.)
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Re: Design a Card

Postby AdmiralMemo » 07 Apr 2016, 06:04

Is this Fading or Vanishing?
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Re: Design a Card

Postby WP&P » 07 Apr 2016, 15:24

Regarding the idea that the player can allow the Grand Bazaar to just expire if the exiled cards aren't worth it, one possible workaround might be to just have it enter tapped. That way, the turn you cast it (or recur it via the trigger), you don't get to use it; you HAVE to go past your next upkeep, which means you have to skip at least one draw step. The triggered recursion happens during upkeep, so if the player exercises that option, they'll just get 3 fresh cards dumped, an artifact that can't do anything, and another skipped draw step.
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