Thursday, March 24, 2011

CCDD 032411—Simic Institute

Cool Card Design of the Day
3/24/2011 - There's a lot to be said for a card that does one thing well. When you find a combo for it, you feel clever. Similarly, there is a real danger to hot-glue-gun design: If the two pieces don't make sense mechanically and thematically both individually and together, than the resulting design just feels silly. That said, when you can create a card that effectively combos with itself and doesn't cross that line, you will have yourself something special.

I'm too close to this design to speak objectively to where it falls (though my gut says good but not great). I do know that the first ability feels very green and the second is arguably blue; that both effects are very Simic; and that they play very nicely together as well as alone (in the context of a simic or +1/+1 counters deck).

I was temped to make the last ability care how many counters were on the creature, but then it has to move from drawing to either scrying (which feels less Simic to me) or X-1 filtering which is seriously sloppy stuff (draw X cards, then discard X-1 cards).


  1. In the context of Ravnica block, it would've been interesting to have this be a Greater Good variant. Retain the first clause, but change the second to the original Greater Good ability, probably up the CC to 3GU. In this way you'd have something that still feels fairly Simic, but would provide impetus to work within a Simic + Golgari framework.

  2. Both abilities could arguably be green. But that doesn't mean that the card couldn't be GU also.