Friday, April 13, 2018

Weekend Art Challenge 041318 - Tsabo6

Hello, Artisans. Click through to see the requirements for this weekend's design challenge, due Monday morning. Every submission warrants feedback, which frankly, you all are awesome at. Listen to each other's feedback, revise your submission any number of times, and on Monday-ish, I'll review the most recent submission from each designer.

The Chitin Swarm by Tsabo6
Design a card for this art. Bonus points for exploring similar mechanical space to any of the mechanical hooks used in Dominaria. Good luck, have fun, and I'll see you Monday.

91 comments:

  1. Beetleback Mythchasers (Rare)
    2GB
    Creature - Human Nomad
    3/3
    Whenever you complete a Saga, you may return an artifact or legendary permanent card from your graveyard to your hand.

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    Replies
    1. I like how this ability references historic without saying it (and how it doesn't let you replay your saga over and over).

      Delete
    2. That is super fun. The flavor of them reading and interpreting a saga, then going to find its subject matter, is a home run.

      I'm fairly confident that this is more Simic than Golgari. History as a theme is Simic, recurring legendary creatures seems green, artifacts blue.

      I tried to look up what the Comprehensive Rules have to say about sagas, but they don't say anything about them yet. I'm going to say it ought to trigger off of sacrificing a Saga rather than completing one, since I don't think that's a thing sagas do.

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    3. I went with the current wording because it seems to grok better to me than sacrificing a story, but indeed there are no rules for 'completing' a saga (yet?).

      I think you're right about color pie issues. I'll be honest, the art influenced by choice of colors here.

      Delete
  2. Journey Anew 2G
    Enchantment - Uncommon
    Whenever any player puts a counter on a Saga, you may put a +1/+1 counter on target creature you control and gain 2 life.

    I was drawn more to the children riding on the beetle than the beetle itself, and it made me think of storytelling and adventures, and therefore the sagas.

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    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    2. Tweaking the text a little and the casting cost:

      Journey Anew 1G
      Enchantment - Uncommon
      Whenever a player puts a counter on a Saga, you gain 2 life and may put a +1/+1 counter on target creature you control.

      Delete
    3. I like this. I was wondering for my own card whether Sagas are too narrow for built around cards or not. But I think the reward here is pretty nice.

      Do you thinm it should trigger only from your Sagas, or any Sagas?

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    4. Because of that narrow design issue, I went with both. Green is able to interact with opponents' enchantments, so I figured it would be fair game for it to get counters from your opponents' sagas well.

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    5. This is a very narrow design, but that's not necessarily a bad thing. The biggest strike against it is that sagas are uncommon and rarer, so this isn't a viable draft-around uncommon without some type of rider that helps you get a saga. It could tutor, get it from your GY, or something else, but without the assistance in getting the card, this should be a build-around rare.

      Green is appropriate for caring about sagas. I wouldn't have it care about your opponents advancing their sagas, not because it isn't in-color, but because it's not how players normally intuit gameplay.

      I would also stick with counters over life. The payoff could be bigger (2 +1/+1 counters, a +1/+1 counter on each creature,) but doesn't have to be.

      Delete
  3. Scavenging Scarab 3BG
    Creature - Insect (C)
    Whenever another Golgari creature you control dies, put a +1/+1 counter on Scavenging Scarab and gain 1 life. (Golgari creatures are only green, black or black and green)
    4/4

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    Replies
    1. Awesome use of batching. The "only green" without putting another "only" before black is a bit odd to me -- what are the pros and cons of doing it Gatherer-style? Like this:

      Golgari creatures are green and/or black and no other colors.

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    2. Or: "Golgari creatures are green and/or black, with no other colors."

      Delete
    3. To me, "and/or" is much harder to figure out than giving an explicit list. "Only" modifies the list, because otherwise you have to parse "only green, only black or only black and green" which feels redundant.

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    4. You're right that "only" can modify the whole list, as demonstrated here: http://theeditorsblog.net/2015/08/08/one-adjective-paired-with-multiple-nouns-a-readers-question/ , and repeating "only" would certainly be redundant. An advantage to and/or is that it translates much better to larger color groups. Surely no one wants:

      Naya creatures are only red, white, green, red and white, red and green, green and white, or red white and green.

      Rather than:

      Naya creatures are red, white, and/or green and no other colors.

      But maybe three-color would require a different templating altogether.

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    5. Since a post on here a bit ago, I'd been wondering how to identify how a player could "become" associated with a guild via gameplay. This is an interesting way to solve that.

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    6. It would be interesting if you could piggyback on the concept of Color Identity to simplify this card, but I'm not quite sure how you would word it. The difficulty seems to come from clarifying that it doesn't include creatures who are more than Black Green.

      "Creatures with a color identity of Black Green are Golgari creatures" (This excludes mono-color)

      "Creatures that could go in a Black Green Commander deck" (This might work for a Commander product)

      "Creatures who identify as Black and Green"

      Not sure exactly how to approach it.

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    7. Don't overthink it. I think "Only" conveys what it needs to here.

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    8. Come for the card design challenges, stay for the deep cut grammar lessons!

      Nice example of your/lpaulsen's batching for guilds idea. Assuming the templating team can come up with reminder text that makes everyone happy, that's a nice thematic common to play in the guild. I don't know that the life gain is necessary to the design, so I'd drop that (or up it and lose the +1/+1 counter growth).

      Delete
  4. Strynd, Leader of the Beetle Brigade-3GB (U)
    Legendary Creature-Human
    2/2
    When CARDNAME enters the battlefield create a 3/3 green and black insect creature token with trample.
    1, Exile an insect creature from your graveyard: Create a Colorless Armor artifact token with creatures you control get +0/+1.

    Rex, the Sturdy Beetle-3GB (U)
    Legendary Creature-Insect
    4/4
    Flying, Vigilance
    "They don't fly often, but when they do it is extraordinary" Random Bystander

    The Ever Growing Colony-2GB (R)
    Enchantment
    At the beginning of your upkeep sacrifice a creature and create X 1/1 green and black insect creature tokens where X is the power of the sacrificed creature.
    2GB: Target creature gets +X/+X where X is its power.

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    Replies
    1. Beetle Brigade sounds really flavorful. I like that name a lot. Is the idea that the dead beetles are getting scavenged for parts (for armor)?

      Also, I see what you did with Rex. Clever. =)

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    2. Strynd: I really like this design! The flavor of fashioning armor out of beetle shells is really awesome, and using artifact tokens to do it is really cool. I bet it would be even more satisfying with a closer mechanical link -- right now Strynd can't make armor out of the Insect token he creates, which is disappointing for both gameplay and flavor reasons. Also slightly odd to me that the armor is a universal toughness boost rather than an Equipment token.

      Colony: Another cool card. This one has a lot of tension. The colony is eating my creatures and turning them into bugs, which is awesome, but what does it have to do with pumping my biggest creature? And once the bugs have taken over, why is the pump at its least effectual?

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    3. Getting the colony to get to a gameplay that felt good and also worked flavorfly was difficult, so I went more for gameplay. The pump is to guarantee you can get a lot of bugs, I think it works, put the trigger, activate the ability twice get a 4/4, sacrifice it get 4 more bugs. Yeah I also felt bad that you could not use the bug token, maybe I could let you search for an insect with 3 power but now we are getting into rare territory. I could have you tap insects to give the idea that you are hiding behind them. I was thinking the armor is so big that you fashion it for your entire army, since the humans are so small, also I think it plays a little better.

      Moonfolklore, yes the idea is that they are scavenging parts for armor and the universal bonus is because the bugs are so big. I actually think an insect is good flavor for our black and green serra angel, also the flavor text drives it home, man why could I have not gotten more multiple choice questions right and submitted that.

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    4. I think it might be okay for a single random rare card, but I want to clarify a little thing about artifact tokens. They've been very careful to make the ones they have have abilities where they go away eventually to avoid a cluttered board state. As I said, it should probably be okay on a single high rarity card in a set, but if you wanted, I think you could make them be sac get +N/+N until eot.

      The BG Serra Angel is probably gonna be a custom card meme for a while now. My favorite interpretation is a sentry for Xira Arien (too bad about no reference in Dominaria!).

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    5. The funny thing about Magic is technically through flavor you can make any card do anything, planar chaos showed how you could shake up the color pie. I can see the board maybe getting cluttered but it won't add much complexity, I think a sac effect would add more complexity. I can see you using a horn to also get the +N/+N, not sure how well that would play.

      Could go with
      Strynd, Leader of the Beetle Brigade-3GB (R)
      Legendary Creature-Human
      2/2
      When CARDNAME enters the battlefield create three 1/1 Green and Black insect creature tokens with flyimg.
      Tap an untapped Insect creature you control: Creatures you control get +0/+1.

      Delete
    6. One thing that hit me when I saw the art was how the Beetle was both a creature and vehicle from the riders' perspective. I wasn't sure what it would mean to Crew something that's already a creature, and I couldn't find a clean answer.

      I like where you are going with the Artifact token. It's too bad Equipment tokens are so wordy, because I think making like three separate pieces of Equipment would be really flavorful.

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    7. Yeah I made a card in a previous challenge that made three tokens, but it takes up a lot of space and adds a lot to complexity.

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    8. Rex is cute.

      Strynd, modified, is a good next step from the initial design. That said, +0/+1 (though sometimes powerful) never reads particularly well, especially for a legend. Golgari are the regeneration colors, so if we're trying to capture insect armor, I'd suggest sacrificing an insect for either a +1/+1 counter or indestructible UEOT. Let the splashy legend lord be splashy.

      Other than evergreens and counters, what could his mechanical hook be that is flavorful, in color, and appropriately eye catching?

      Delete
    9. Strynd, Leader of the Beetle Brigade-3GB (R)
      Legendary Creature-Human
      2/2
      Sacrifice an Insect: CARDNAME gets either hexproof or deathtouch until end of turn.
      XGB, T: Search your library for an insect with converted mana cost X or less and put it onto the battlefield.

      This version might be too strong, but definitely catches the eye.

      Delete
  5. Great Insect Migration 2BG
    Enchantment - Saga (R)
    (As this Saga enters and after your draw step, add a lore counter. Sacrifice after III.)
    I — Look at the top card of your library. If it's a land card, you may put it onto the battlefield. If you control seven or fewer lands, remove a lore counter from Great Insect Migration.
    II — Create five 1/1 green Saproling creature tokens.
    III — Create two 2/2 black and green Insect creature tokens with haste, trample, and "Sacrifice a Saproling: Put two +1/+1 counters on this creature."

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    Replies
    1. I had a hard time adjusting the power level for this. It's possible it should only make one insect, or cost 3BG, or require eight/nine or fewer lands.

      Delete
    2. This is a very cool design! I Two things I notice:

      1) I think it's REALLY cool that the I keeps repeating itself until you hit a particular threshold. I think the gameplay would be better if it let you put the card on the bottom. Otherwise it leads to a lot of draw steps where you know what's going to happen, which makes the game less exciting.

      2) I think the III ratchets up the complexity beyond where you want it to be. The character count is substantially above the normal limit, even for a rare, and it becomes hard for me to understand what the card does or how to use it properly. I like that you get to sacrifice the creatures you just made for an effect; I wonder if there's a simpler way that would be more hard-hitting.

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    3. Yeah, one of the biggest challenges in this design is trying to keep the word count and complexity to a minimum. I can think of more designs that use the mechanic of looping a chapter of the saga, but for the flavor I'm going for, it's very difficult to come up with simpler ways to do things. (What I want is for the insects to be migrating to a saproling breeding ground, so it needs to make saprolings and make insects that eat them somehow.)

      One idea that I did have that sacrifices a bit of the flavor but shrinks the word count:

      Great Insect Migration 2BG
      Enchantment - Saga (R)
      (As this Saga enters and after your draw step, add a lore counter. Sacrifice after III.)
      I — Reveal the top card of your library. If it's a land card, put it onto the battlefield. Otherwise, put it back or put it into your graveyard. If you control eight or fewer lands, remove a lore counter from Great Insect Migration.
      II, III — Create three 1/1 green Saproling creature tokens and a 2/2 green and black Insect creature token with trample, haste, and "Sacrifice a Saproling: Put two +1/+1 counters on this creature."

      Delete
    4. I like how it would play, but flavorfully why am I retelling the same story over and over? Is this one the kids really like or is it being told by someone very forgetful?

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    5. Basically, the flavor is that you need to travel a long distance (have lots of lands in play) before the insects arrive at the feeding grounds.

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    6. I meant the flavor for removing lore counters, because Sagas are the telling of stories.

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    7. Removing the lore counters would just mean that that part of the story is still ongoing and they haven't reached the next part yet.

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    8. Maybe the first part can just find a land, the second part can make the saprolings if you control X or more lands, and the final part makes the insect?

      It's a tricky amount of info to convey.

      Delete
    9. They haven't made an MSE template for sagas yet, but I would highly suspect that there is just way too much going on there to reasonably fit in that (or any) card frame.

      In a world where space and templating restrictions aren't a thing, that's a very flavorful and interesting design. But as designers, we have to be very cognizant of what the end product will look like. When making top down designs, you will almost always have to forego the perfect flavorful execution for something cleaner. Or you end up with Takklemaggot. (Pro Tip: Don't end up with Takklemaggot.) The biggest trick is to latch onto the most flavorful thing about the design and build out from there.

      Your saga wants to tell the story of a migration of instects. That means lands.

      I, II: Reveal cards from the top of your library until you reveal a land card. Put it onto the battlefield tapped and all other cards revealed this way into your GY.

      The end result is a colony of insects.

      III - Create two 1/1 black and green insect creature tokens for each land you control.

      or, if you want to emphasize the big beetles, one 3/3 token for each land you control in excess of 5.

      Sagas are cool, but they're complex even before you start adding any rules text whatsoever, so it's worth taking as many steps as necessary to keep your complexity down. The repeating steps, the multiple types of tokens, all added complexity that contributed to an interesting tale, but made for a very difficult to parse card.

      Delete
  6. Khepri, Story Shepherd 1WBG
    Legendary Creature - Insect (R)
    4/4
    Remove a lore counter from a Saga you control: Put a +1/+1 counter on each other creature you control.
    -
    Each child knows her stories by heart, and each child has their favorite parts.

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    Replies
    1. I like Moonfolklore, this ties in to what I said above to rkhon, flavorfully why would we remove lore counters and one of my reasonings was that a kid wants a chapter to be retold over and over, the other was a forgetful storyteller but that might just be a sad character to depict.

      Delete
    2. Very neat! The flavor really ties into the ability.

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    3. Is the beetle telling the story?! I love that idea.

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    4. Thanks! My idea was the beetle was telling the story to the kids on her back. Kids like to hear their favorite stories over and over. I wasn't sure I got this idea across well enough in the art though.

      It's a pretty narrow design, but I think someone could have fun building around it. I don't think it's broken...but maybe it's ability should be limited to once per turn.

      Delete
    5. Sweet flavor.

      I think being able to remove lore counters at will breaks a lot of sagas. I'd be more comfortable with a limited or conditional use. In this set either an ETB/death trigger or:
      Whenever you play an historic card, you may remove a lore counter from target Saga.

      Delete
    6. That use of flavor text to justify the card's flavor and mechanics was perfect. Well done, Moonfolklore.

      That said, I do agree that it needs to be limited in a big way to keep it from creating some absurd situations with a lot of the sagas. Fall of the Thran and The Eldest Reborn are particular offenders. I think a one- or two-time use might be the best option. As Jay suggested, ETB or LTB trigger (I lean towards ETB), or even +1/+1 counters that are removed from it to remove the lore counters (~ ETB with two +1/+1 counters on it. BG, Remove a +1/+1 counter from ~: Add or Remove a lore counter from target saga.

      Very nice.

      Delete
    7. I think you are both right. Repeated Ravages of War is not fun. I thinks this is a little better (but blink could still be an issue):

      When ~ enters the battlefield, you may remove a lore counter from target Saga you control. If you do, put a +1/+1 counter on each other creature you control.

      Delete
  7. Battle Beetle 3BB
    Creature -- Insect (U)
    4/5
    Menace
    Whenever CARDNAME attacks, you may give it -1/-1 until end of turn for each attacking Fighter you control. If you do, Fighters you control gain menace until end of turn. (Fighters are Bersekers, Knights, Pirates, Soldiers and Warriors.)
    -
    "Pile on!"

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    Replies
    1. I like that it is a may ability, so you limit the feel bad moments, also like that it is not a counter. I see you are using the batching technology, not sure if 5 is too many and pirate and berserker seem out there, I find a fighter more trained.

      Delete
    2. Thanks for the feedback! You could well be right about five being too many; I'm using Dominaria's Slinn Vod (Merfolk, Leviathans, Krakens, Octopuses, and Serpents) as my point of reference, but that's only a single card. Re: fighter, I'm basically using "physical ground attackers in classic RPGs" as my reference, and Berserkers are pretty common in that genre. "Knights, Soldiers, and Warriors" is much cleaner, though. I think I'll make that change.

      Delete
    3. Yeah I see berserkers closer to barbarians which is not a class of fighter and pirates fall closer to rogue for me and in the other article on this site for batching people were talking about three, but that might just be because that is what wizards did.

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    4. I view Berserkers as classes of fighters because of various Final Fantasy and Fire Emblem games. If I wanted to make it feel like the beetleriders were rougher and untrained, I could do a Lovisa Coldeyes style batch -- "Fighters are Barbarians, Berserkers, and Warriors." But I feel you're right about Barbarian not being a class of fighter, plus it isn't a supported creature type anymore in MTG (last one was in Ravnica). What would a reasonable third creature type to be, along with Berserkers and Warriors?

      Delete
    5. The greatest of fighter, the coward, haha. Juggernaut? Mercenary is a good one for trained fighter. Ninja is in another league. Samurai. Ooh could have a stealth team with Ninja, Samurai, Mercenary.

      Delete
    6. To make it official, I'll revise my batch to say:

      (Fighters are Knights, Soldiers and Warriors.)

      Delete
    7. More Batching. I'm a fan.

      Your revisions highlight the biggest problem when using it to create super-classes of creature types. There are lots of niche things that could be considered fighters (also fish), so some will always feel like they are missing from the list. This mirrors the problem R&D ran into with Tribal - that unless all goblin themed noncreatures were goblins, why were any?

      That said, Knights, Soldiers and Warriors hits the main three fighter classes that show up in the vast majority of blocks, so I'm good with listing specifically those three.

      I love the story this card tells. The design is clean and resonant. Well done.

      Delete
  8. Beetleback Vanguard 1B
    Creature - Human Knight (u)
    B: Target Insect gets +1/+1 until end of turn. Activate this ability only outside of combat.
    Tap an Insect you control: Target Knight gets +X/+0, where X is the tapped creature’s power.
    2/2

    I tried to maximize the potential of the effect while minimizing the fiddliness, but it's still quite fiddly.

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    Replies
    1. So I can use the second ability in combat? Why do I feel like it wants some way to get first strike.

      Delete
    2. That's a lot of text to read for an ability that is only relevant when you have an Insect in play. A few suggestions:
      1. Ditch one of the two abilities. As a player I'll still start looking for some Insects to go along with this.
      2. Give this Knight a way to create Insect tokens or creature cards.
      3. Make this the Insect and let it give rides to any creature (second ability).

      Delete
    3. Late re-entry, trying something simpler and pulling from Sporecrown Thallid's template. Besides the art itself, this should boost two types that are often tokens, making expendable insects' cuts and bites more lasting, and helping empower the many first-strike Knight permanents.

      Scarabsong Vanguard WB
      Creature - Human Knight (u)
      Each other creature you control that’s a Knight or Insect gets +1/+1 and wither.
      2/2

      Delete
    4. Awkwardest Firebreathing is definitely going to be an official achievement to unlock in next year's Goblin Game.

      The reentry is much better. I love how much we learn about the world and its mechanical design from a basic draft signpost lord. I want to play the set that that's in. Play design would possibly put it at a higher cost, since the stat boost plus wither is very potent.

      Delete
  9. Siege Rhinoceros Beetle {2}{G}{G} (Rare)
    Creature - Insect
    Trample, Vigilance
    Whenever this creature attacks, put a +1/+1 counter on it.
    When this creature dies, you gain life equal to it's toughness.
    4/5

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    Replies
    1. This card is very strong powerwise. I think we need a stronger metagame, though, so good. Not sure if the life gain should keep scaling, maybe a set value.

      Delete
    2. Since this will be a 5/5 almost immediately, I feel like the +1 toughness should be shaved off. That's a minor tweak on a solid design.

      Delete
    3. All the Tammy/Spikes in our audience just fell in love.

      I'm with Jay on this. Excellent design, a 4/4 reads better (even if we lose the allusion to Siege Rhino). Square stats, especially on something that's going to be generating its own counters, makes for more intuitive gameplay.

      This card screams "kill me with fire ASAP." Would having the death trigger scale down rather than up over time create any type of tension that we would want to see? I'm not convinced in any way that it would, but it's worth considering.

      Delete
    4. Obviously the allusion was a large part of the statline, but square is probably better. I'm not sure how I could scale down the growth with size without some hamfisted textbox, but I did consider it being a flat amount. I'm a Spike, so I like designing Spike cards...

      Rhox Beetle {2}{G}{G} (Rare)
      Creature - Insect
      Trample, Vigilance
      Whenever this creature attacks, put a +1/+1 counter on it.
      When this creature dies, you gain 4 life.
      4/4

      Delete
  10. Legendary Growth - G (C)
    Instant
    Target creature gets +2/+2 and is legendary until end of turn.

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    Replies
    1. Wow! Absolutely. Cute that in multiples these can become removal, too.

      Delete
    2. I like it! But is this a break for Green, due to what Pasteur said?

      Delete
    3. It does seem like this would be more of a white ability than a green one (precedent: On Serra's Wings).

      Delete
    4. In Bolas's Clutches sets the precedent for Blue as well, and there are two colorless equipment cards with "is legendary" as well, so as of now I'd guess it isn't affiliated with any particular color.

      It could say "target creature you control" if you want to avoid it being 'removal', but I don't think that's a real problem. I wanted to keep it as close to a callback to Giant Growth as possible (without being +3/+3).

      Delete
    5. I love it. I don't even mind the potential removal mode of it, and I'm as much of a color pie purist as you're likely to find. It could even be a strictly better Giant Growth at +3/+3 and I would be happy. Fantastic design.

      Delete
  11. Beetle Frigate (common)
    5
    Artifact - Vehicle
    When CARDNAME enters the battlefield, create two 1/1 colorless Human creature tokens.
    Crew 2
    4/4

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    Replies
    1. Where uh.. the picture insect is clearly a machine. A few questions for people:
      1. Why do you think we haven't seen something like this yet?
      2. This probably would have been a better fit for Kaladesh, where "Vehicles matter" was a thing and people had a tendency to play too many of them. But I think it could go in any set.
      3. Could the Human tokens be white?

      Delete
    2. Also I guess:
      4. Is this common? I think it is pretty simple but it might be too powerful? I guess leave that to development. Maybe the "this isn't quite a normal vehicle aspect" makes it uncommon.

      Delete
    3. A vehicle that comes with its own crew is neat. Power-wise, I think this could be common (at maybe +{1}) but for card advantage and novelty is probably better at uncommon (at maybe -{1}).
      3 Yeah. Cards make tokens of other colors.

      Delete
    4. You completely missed your opportunity to name this vehicle VW Bug, but I'ma let it slide.

      I would leave this at common (and possibly tweak some numbers) simply because this offsets the risk of running the wrong vehicle/creature ratio in limited.

      As far as why it hasn't been done before, they really haven't mined that deep into Vehicle design space yet, but I'm sure something like this will eventually see the light of day. Very nice design (with some liberties taken into account for the art).

      I like this design. W

      Delete
  12. Underworld Courier 2B
    Creature - Beetle
    3/3
    {T}: Up to three target legendary creatures with combined power 3 or less gain menace UEOT.
    {T}, sacrifice ~: Return up to three legendary creature cards with combined power 3 or less from your graveyard to your hand.

    I think I should only keep half of this but I'm not sure which half. The first would work better as an attack trigger, but if the beetle dies the second role is less useful. The cost could be "exile self from graveyard" but then you get the incentive to just mill it never casting it. Maybe a mana cost?

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    Replies
    1. I agree you should probably only keep half. "three legendary creatures with combined power 3 or less" also seems like a very narrow grouping.. Can you keep half of this as well - either "up to three target creatures with combined power 3 or less" or just "legendary creature"? Otherwise I'm looking through the spoiler to try and get maximum value.. and I think there are only 4 legendaries with power 1 or less.

      I personally think the "combined power 3 or less" part would be an interesting attack trigger, especially if this can target itself. Finally, is menace the best keyword to give creatures with low (less than or equal to 3) power?

      Delete
    2. I'm not sure what the "combined power" is doing for us here.

      Underworld Courier 2B
      Creature - Beetle
      3/3
      2B, T, Sacrifice ~: Return each legendary creature card with power 3 or less from your graveyard to your hand.

      Delete
    3. A lot of the weird restrictions are "why does the art show three children". Hm, it could potentially do a *different* half.

      Underworld Courier 2B
      Whenever ~ attacks, any number of creatures you control with combined power 3 or less are unblockable this turn.
      {T}, Sacrifice ~: Return target legendary creature from your graveyard to your hand.

      That does sound like a story -- you ride the attacking beetle, but only heroes come back from the dead on it. But now the two halves fight against each other more.

      Delete
    4. I think you got too caught up on the three idea here.

      Whenever ~ attacks, another target creature you control can't be blocked this turn.

      That's not really a black ability though, so it would likely need to be put into blue.

      I'm really not sure what the restocking a legend is doing attached to this, other than to get the bonus points. It doesn't thematically play with the rest of the card in any way.

      How about

      Legendary Creature - Insect
      Whenever ~ attacks, another target legendary creature gains menace until end of turn.
      When ~ dies, return another target legendary creature that died this turn from your GY to the BF.

      If both sides care about legendary, than there's a lot more thematic cohesion between the abilities.

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  13. Simple flavourful mechanicaly relevant common

    Post Apocalyptic Scavenger 4G
    Creature Bug Scout
    When Post Apocalyptic Scavenger enters the battlfield you may return a saga from you graveyard to your hand
    4/5


    Fun boundary pushing uncommon

    Post Apocalyptic Scavenger 3BG
    Creature Bug Scout
    Whenever you sacrifice an enchantment you may exile it instead.
    When Post Apocalyptic Scavenger scavengers attacks return a card exiled with Post Apocalyptic Scavenger to its owner's hand.
    4/5

    (I hope sagas are actually sacrificed, otherwise some clukier wording may be required)

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    Replies
    1. Since there are just five rare and five uncommon sagas, this common will usually just be a 4/5 for five (which is quite good) and when it does hit, it'll be too good (because it's also recurring a rarer card). I do like the simplicity and I wish green had played with sagas somehow.

      The black-green version is oddly specific. Why not:

      Whenever Post Apocalyptic Scavenger attacks return an enchantment card from your graveyard to its owner's hand.

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    2. I like the higher level that can happen but is wanting you to do some work with enchanments you will sacrifice (seals, sagas, ect) but I think you are right in that it could be to cute and the simpler text is "Whenever Post Apocalyptic Scavenger attacks return an enchantment card from your graveyard to its owner's hand."

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    3. (Sagas are indeed sacrificed)

      I really like where the design ended up. My only quibble here is whether it's out of color. Black returns creatures specifically. Green gets lands specifically or cards generally, but doesn't really call out enchantments. That's White's slice. All that said, Sagas are a green concept (even if they aren't especially mechanically relevant in Dominaria), so in another set that cared about them, I could see Green bending to allow this.

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  14. This doesn't beg historic to me. It's {BG} but not saprolings/fungus. Of the options, kicker makes sense.

    Traveling Carabid {4}{G}
    Creature-Insect
    Kicker {3}{G}
    ~ must be blocked if able.
    When ~ ETB, if it was kicked, create three 1/1 green Saproling creature tokens.
    3/5

    I wanted it to be able to 'carry' creatures over. That it looks like Gaea’s Protector + Spore Swarm is partly coincidence.
    Not sure the unkicked version wants to be common. If not, this can be uncommon and the kicker can be 1 cheaper.

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    Replies
    1. I'm not seeing many Saprolings there, but it's a hard art to play to.

      I think a 3/5 force block is fine at common, and I think the kicker could even be lower - 2G or 1GG - and it would still be a reasonable common. Probably a high pick common if you're firmly in green, but still reasonable. Very nice.

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    2. They can be human tokens, if you really want.

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  15. You Artisans never fail to impress. A lot of solid designs, and flavor/mechanical themes carried the day in a big way for this challenge. Good work, one and all.

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    Replies
    1. I love alk the brainstorming and sharing of ideas on this site :).

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