Wednesday, November 4, 2015

CCDD 110415—King of the Eight Seas

Cool Card Design of the Day
11/4/2015 - Here's a big legendary octopus.


Or its absurd mythic alternate:


20 comments:

  1. A legendary rare that's just a big vanilla unless my opponent is playing the right color? I'm not feeling it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Said no Johnny ever.

      Think commander, think blue turning things to islands.

      Delete
    2. Would Johnny get excited about an 8/4 Islandwalk? If not, what makes this more attractive?

      Delete
    3. Come to think of it, Johnny would love the challenge of "turn things into islands to get the bonus", but be disappointed by the result (even if an 8/4 islandwalk is good, it's not interesting).

      Maybe the card we should be writing has "gets +1/+1 for each island your opponent controls which wasn't originally an island" or "is unblockable if your opponent controls..." etc. That's not what we're used to, but if that's the major attraction of this card, and randomly screwing over mono-blue players isn't desirable, then maybe it would work well.

      Delete
  2. I suppose it is known that Islandwalk is no longer a thing? No problem with writing out its rules text though.

    Still, I think this is very Anti-fun. I'm not really addressing the significant problems with landwalk by saying "Hey, you can just give me your lands."

    I think it would be better if it at least had a clause like "All lands have Tap: Add U," so your opponent could at least use their non-islands to still play their spells.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Also, I will totally use the "Opponent may give you control" thing on a Crystal Clash card some day, it is so appropriate for the diplomatic seafolk.

      Delete
    2. Landwalk exists - it's just not evergreen anymore. Still a tool they can, will, and should use in the right context.

      Delete
    3. It was pretty heavily implied that landwalk is going to be used VERY little, if ever. It's just not fun.

      Delete
    4. zefferal: That is not how they have used abilities that cease to become evergreen in the past. See, for example, islandhome, fear, etc.

      They specifically are reserving Protection as "not quite evergreen but we'll use it when we deem it appropriate", but the others are gone gone. (Also, Protection is a terrible choice for a mechanic to use only every few years on a high profile card!)

      Delete
    5. @Inanimate - oh yeah - I'm not expecting to see it, but this the above octopi are the exact type of cards I would expect to see it on - the swinginess of the mechanic from game to game is mitigated when placing the choice of keep lands v. unblockable 8-power lies with you.

      @Tommy - I've lobbied for discontinuing protection for a long while. Same with landwalk. But there are situations (OCTOPI!) where it can still be relevant and fun. Reminder text on rares is permitted.

      Delete
    6. If you're arguing they could do that, well, maybe, I think they wouldn't. If you're arguing that it is something they have ever done before, or have expressed any desire or potential to do, I don't think it is (but I could be wrong).

      Writing "~ can't be blocked if the defending player controls an island." is fine, there is no need to call it Islandwalk. Of course, Islandwalk is a miserable mechanic, that does not actually make any thematic sense. Is there any reason to use it when we could use a good mechanic instead?

      Delete
    7. I agree R&D has no intention of making new landwalk cards. If they did, it would be in a supplemental set with old cards that use or mention it, and likely on a rare card.

      I also agree that landwalk is not a great mechanic, and they were right to move away from it.

      I disagree very strongly that it makes no thematic sense because it is absolutely dripping with flavor.

      I also disagree that it would be okay or even better to write out the ability text in place of using the keyword; that would be disingenuous. If you're going to use the ability, own it.

      Delete
    8. It is thematic if you don't think about it, which is good enough for most purposes I guess.

      I think writing out abilities is far more new player friendly, should they ever want, say, an intimidate creature or an islandhome creature or whatever. The fact that something was once an evergreen keyword should not constrain future design space.

      Delete
    9. I stand corrected. http://markrosewater.tumblr.com/post/133592530823/has-landwalk-been-taken-completely-out-of-your-bag

      Delete
  3. I really like the idea, but I'm not sure it quite works. I'd like to see a version where the opponent's choice was more consistent.

    This is somewhere between "8/4 vanilla" and "8/4 islandwalk" and neither of those seem really great: either don't-really-do-much-for-the-cost if the opponent has the wrong deck, or a completely blowout if the opponent happens to be playing islands.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. There can be no swingy cards?

      Delete
    2. My impression is that islandwalk is TOO swingy. But I am intuiting my way, I would like to hear from someone with more development experience.

      I think I also find it difficult to evaluate because I'm not sure when to think of cards as "a colour hoser to balance out specific strategies" (which isn't always a good idea, but should happen sometimes) and when as "strong enough to played anyway, but particularly devastating against certain decks" (where all strong cards are a little swingy, but too swingy makes you feel like "strategy X just auto-loses" which can be unfun) and which cards might be both. But again, I'm not quite sure I'm thinking about this right...

      Delete
    3. Honestly, I think you're right. At six mana, this is great in Limited but not good enough in Standard except against blue decks. At four mana, this is good across the board, and too strong against blue decks. I would hope it's a long time before something like Jace the Broken so warps a format again that we want to hate on blue this hard.

      Delete
    4. Hate cards nowadays are safety valves for Standard. They tend to hose strategies, not colors.

      Delete
  4. The feel from looking at the card can feel mythic but won't play mythically, so the mythic option is out. Rare can be O.K.

    Giving up Islands to prevent Islandwalk is pretty sweet.

    The toughness being 4 feels weird, even if it means that it's balancing out the 6 casting cost. It feels like blue is cheating when it's shaving off points of toughness so that it can have a 6-drop that deals 8 damage. Even though the drawback is its toughness.

    Lots of eights is good. Octopus theme, go!

    Legendary monoblue octopus feels too much like it's competing with Lorthos. I would have expected a different legendary sea monster to get better variety for incidental commander choices or at least a non-mono-blue octopus.

    ReplyDelete