Thursday, February 16, 2012

M13 Choosing a Mythic Dragon

I can't thank this community enough for the amazing discussion and awesome ideas you all contributed to in the last week. There were a ton of great dragon ideas, many of which are better saved for an expert expansion where they can truly shine in all their zany hotness. I've mocked up the ones that I think are the best fit not just for a core set, but M13 in particular. I want to share them with you so that you can vote which ones you like the best and the least and so we can consider any final edits to them. Do not take the absence of a design you proposed or liked as judgment against that design. There were a couple that are arguably better in the abstract than the following, but that just weren't appropriate for Magic 2013.

Dragon Mage fills the role of an exciting reprint. For those who haven't played with it, it's better than it looks because its seemingly symmetrical effect isn't. As the red player, you're much more likely to have emptied your hand by the time it triggers and you're also more likely to draw a grip of cheap burn to finish your opponent off with. The disadvantage of this reprint is that it's not the most resonant dragon trope and that it's not a new card.

This is my favorite of the dragon tropes proposed. Thanks, George Gone. I was amazed how hard it was to find an image for it. I really wanted to see a dragon flying off with a princess in his clutches. Anyhow, the biggest strike against Princess Snatcher is that the ability is distinctly out of red's color pie.

This guy is a riff off of Princess Snatcher and an attempt to make a more red people eater. In this iteration, it's your opponent's choice whether they want to sacrifice someone to sate this man-eating monster. Very few creatures will be able to block it and kill it in combat, so your opponent will have to think about how much damage he wants to take versus preventing it and making your threat even bigger. My big concern is that this feels like a downside mechanic and Timmy may not like that.

Transitioning from eating people to just ravaging your castle, the surrounding farms and all the hapless soldiers and serfs along the way, we have Castle Razer. We've upgraded Shivan Dragon's firebreathing for a one-sided wrath effect, so this should be pretty amazing to swing with, yet the card still seems to fall somewhat flat as a mythic. It's strong, and it's flavorful, but I don't know, is it exciting?

EDIT:
Rampart Breaker is HavelockV's upgrade to Castle Razer. I prefer this version. It's not as strong in play, but it reads much better.

This is Duncan's design, championed by Pasteur. I'm not a fan because the "tapped mountain" ability has zero flavor for me, but there's enough love for this going around that it's certainly a contender. I'd prefer Tigt's "R: +2/+0" or "Whenever you cast a spell, ~ gets +1/+0 for R spent" depending on your goal.

P for Pizza inspired this simple design and Fading Shadows of a Memory Beloved had the perfect name for it. This focuses on the trope of dragons as being essentially indestructible. Rather than write "except against Knights" or "except against equipment named Dragon Slayer" let's give it the full impact of being indestructible and leave the work of getting around that to the dragon slayer cards themselves. As strong as indestructibility is, it's not as oppressive as protection since he can at least be answered by spells.

EDIT:
Adding the ever-Forking version of Mentor of Fire at Greg's request. I agree it's pretty exciting.

Which of these do you love and which do you hate? Are any tweaks called for?

121 comments:

  1. All great ideas.
    I don't like Dragon of Coldrock: too clever for me, and with very low flavor.
    Castle Razer is ok, even if IMHO too oppressive against small creatures.
    To solve the problem with Gluttunous Tyrant, I think we should make a way the controller choose either the sacrifice or the damage; altough it may be too functionally similar to provoke.
    Finally, I may be partial, but I LOVE Diamond-Scale Dragon: so simple yet so impressive. My inner Timmy leaps with seeing it.

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  2. Gluttonous Tyrant should read: "Sacrifice a Creature or Artifact, ~ gains Defender until eot." Change the art to an obese dragon atop a pile of treasure.

    He's satiated and calm after receiving his sacrifice, not sleepy. Plus you remove the downside for Timmy.

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  3. Hmm, I should go look at the discussion. These all bored me to tears. Dragon Mage was the only exciting one, other than princess snatcher. As you've said PS, is out of color. I don't think this can quite justify it but it could be worth a discussion. (I would have dismissed it, but that doesn't mean someone shouldn't fight for it.)

    Coldrock is okay, I like that it can firebreathe while you cast other stuff, but it feels rare, not mythic. It's the kind of thing I expect to see as the M13 mythic dragon from WtoC, and very much not in a good way. Too straightforward.

    Diamond also suffers from the problem almost all dragons suffer from - it's cool, but it's not interesting. It's not really exciting, not really sexy, it's just pretty good.

    You've already felt that Castle Razer has the same problem. It's surely more exciting in play than it reads (dealing the damage 1 by 1 is part of that problem - it doesn't read as well, even though it's very strong). In a vacuum this might be great, but there have been so many dragons that do this sort of thing - it just doesn't catch hold of enfranchised players. Flameblast Dragon was really cool when it was printed, but now all these variations are diluting that style of dragon to make them all less cool.

    Gluttonous Tyrant: WotC has moved completely out of "opponents can activate this ability" because it's just not fun text on a card. Don't do it. Compare that dragon to Grimgrin. Grimgrin just kills guys when he attacks, and has some other drawback to keep him in check. You could put almost the exact same text on a dragon (it would deal damage instead of outright kill).

    Okay read the discussion.

    I like Razing Hellkite. It's a little unfortunate that it's just a flying Obsidian Fireheart, but it reads as mythic to me and very exciting too.

    Self-serving Tyrant was the better of the princess eaters - giving the opponent a choice of what to lose (not just creatures) is more interesting. The "sac one creature to prevent attack" is what creatures already do... they chump block. In fact, with that ability, why bother putting flying on the card? (I know it's not the same, I'm saying that because you are adding a bunch of words that don't do a lot).

    You could do the inverse of that too... After seeing all the token creators I thought of this:

    Dragon Sire
    4RR
    creature - dragon
    flying
    sacrifice 5 permanents: put a 5/5 red dragon creature token with flying onto the battlefield
    5/5

    Now you're feeding it whatever, in order to get more dragons. Combine with tokens for build-around, or just sac your lands after casting for the broodmate effect. Could also do the variation where the tokens are copies of it (so that you can lose the original and still make more). Costing subject to desired strength in standard.

    I also like runaway reaction dragon, though I might mess with the numbers and costs.

    Serra Avenger of Dragons is cool too, but not for a core set.

    Fire Mentor made me think of that fire elemental, and that made me think of a dragon that just forks everything you do. It's probably more fitting for a wizard, but dragons' can be smart and magical too, right? Then I read the next couple of comments. Looks like you thought of that too. Well? Where is the "copies all your spells dragon?" That's mythic and cool.

    I think you left the better ideas on the cutting room floor.

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    1. Thanks for the feedback, Greg. Some ideas fell by the wayside just because they didn't get great responses. That's why the reason for this post. To give people another chance to clarify what they did and didn't like.

      It makes me sad that Diamond-Scale Dragon isn't exciting enough. Five years ago it would have seriously dropped jaws. Even today, an indestructible flier of that size and cost is unprecedented and very strong, but I see your point that indestructibility has been done so much already that it's just not that exciting anymore, even if it's still crazy strong.

      I had proposed a couple all-upside versions of Gluttonous Tyrant to the team and they weren't impressed:
      "Whenever ~ attacks, defending player must sacrifice a creature. If he or she does, put a +1/+1 counter on ~."
      "Whenever ~ attacks, defending player sacrifices a creature. If he or she can't, put a +1/+1 counter on ~."

      I love Razing Hellkite but you're the first person to agree.

      I just added Mentor of Fire to the list.

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  4. Castle Razer is the only one I like. I would do it like this:

    Rampart Burner
    5RR
    Creature - Dragon
    Flying
    Whenever CARDNAME attacks, you may pay 5RR. If you do, CARDNAME deals 5 damage to each creature defending player controls.
    5/5

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    1. At mythic, I think Rampart Burner can be cheaper, but I agree it's a better implementation than Castle Razer because it reads more impressively.

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    2. ...you guys do know about Balefire Dragon, right?

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    3. What Balefire Dragon? (moonveil dragon also does not exist)

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    4. Here's a Dragon similar to the above trope but with the LD that a couple people wanted to see out of Razer.

      Scorcher of the Fields 2RRR
      Creature-Dragon
      Flying, haste
      Whenever ~ attacks a player, destroy target land he or she controls.
      4/4

      "Land" could be replaced with "plains or island" or "nonmountain land".

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    5. I could also see an Into the Maw of Hell dragon:

      Scorcher of the Fields 3RRR
      Creature-Dragon
      Flying
      Whenever ~ attacks a player, destroy target land he or she controls. ~ deals 6 damage to target creature that player controls.
      6/6

      "6 damage" could be replaced with "damage equal to the number of land cards in his or her graveyard" but that's probably just fancy for fancy's sake.

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    6. Combining that concept with the Dragon Mentor idea:

      Draconic Familiar 4RR
      Creature- Dragon
      Flying, Trample
      When ~ deals damage to a player, you may search your library for a red instant or sorcery card and cast it. Shuffle your library. (You still pay the spell's costs.)
      5/5

      It's an Into the Maw of Hell dragon and a Dragon Wizard and whatever else you want. Considering half of the designs follow that general form anyway, why not embrase it?

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    7. Flavor text:

      What do you get the Pyromancer who has everything?

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    8. I can get behind that. I'd rather you get the spell for free but lose trample. Bigger hoop + bigger reward seems more mythic.

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    9. I liked free too, but it's just insta kill with any sort of Relentless Assault spell. Maybe that's fine, but you'd have to price it out of the range of spike. (7ish)

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  5. Another thought (based on some sweet art I found):

    Great Firecracker 3RR
    Creature-Dragon
    Flying, haste
    Whenever Great Firecracker attacks, put a +1/+1 counter on it. It deals damage equal to the number of +1/+1 counters on it to each creature defending player controls.
    4/4

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  6. If our goal was only resonant fantasy, I'd be much more in support of Princess Hunter and Diamond-Scale; but sadly even at mythic, this is a core set, and as such we should probably stay at least loosely within Red's color pie.

    My qualms with the various Tyrants are more or less what Greg said above.

    Fire Mentor does seem cool and does seem printable ... but not in the set that we've built thus far. Both of our current red mythics deal with copying - and while the Shimmering Djinn could certainly be altered, I don't know whether we want to replace Chandra, the Firebrand? I just can't imagine Fire Mentor sitting next to her at the same rarity in the same set.

    I really like the new Rampart Breaker, but it might need just a little more to push it over the edge. Is there any way for him to "destroy target land" in the process? (ie, breaking-the-ramparts?) I would also consider testing the trigger at RRRRR, but that's the tiniest of maybes and I could definitely be wrong.

    I would be excited for a reprint of Dragon Mage.

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    1. I quite like Fire Mentor, but Pasteur's right. We can't print that next to Chandra, the Firebrand: Way too similar an ability at the same color+rarity.

      Here's another version that plays up the MOAR-BURN but plays down the spell-copying.

      Mentor of Fire 3RR
      Creature-Dragon
      Flying
      Whenever a red source you control would deal damage, it deals double that damage instead.
      4/4

      I didn't try to disguise the reference to Fire Servant because I like homages, but it may make sense to make this bigger so the connection is less obvioyus. 5RR for a 6/6?

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    2. We could also merge this with the Coldrock and Eruption Hellkite designs. My problem with the Mentor's of fire that double/copy is that they don't have synergy with their abilities all that well. That thing is going to with the game as a double striking 4/4 way more often than with burn spells. Or it's going to make my burn spells potent enough that I really am going to wish it was just an enchantment.

      But maybe we can pull a few of these ideas together

      Eruption Hellkite 5RR
      Creature- Dragon
      Flying
      R: Eruption Hellkite gets +1/+0 until end of turn.
      Whenever you tap a Mountain for mana, add R to your mana pool. (In addition to the mana the land produces)
      4/4

      This is a little more flavorful than Coldrock, requires the turn set up time that the original design of Pasture's didn't, and doesn't want more spells in hand like Mentor of Fire, etc. I also like that if you manage to hard cast it at 7, play your eighth mountain BAM! 20.

      Thoughts?

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    3. Is winning the game with a double striking 4/4 dragon such a bad thing?

      Is winning it with an 18/4 dragon any better?

      I do like Eruption Hellkite more than Dragon of Coldrock because the ability evokes something (Mana Flare).

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    4. Maybe not. Eruption could even be a 0/6 if you think that's more interesting.

      I also don't have a problem with a double striking 4/4 dragon. But the fact that it double ALL damage feels like a third nipple. It's interesting that it's there, but lord knows what I'm going to do with it. With EH, you just want to pump that mana into the hellkite, but unlike +2/+0 it lets you do other things too if you need to. If you wanted to weaken the power of the ability a little, you could make it 1R: +1/+0 or 2R: +2/+0. That's for development.

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    5. I really don't want to see a dragon with less than four power unless the theme demands it, regardless of how much power it can gain.

      Putting bad firebreathing on Mana Flare Dragon seems like a terrible message. Here's a ton of mana! I guess you could use it to make this a Shivan Dragon again. I also just remembered Nirkana Revenant is a thing. Talk about a wet cloth.

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    6. Territorial Dragon 4RR
      Flying 4/4
      Whenever a player taps a land for mana, Territorial Dragon deals 1 damage to that player.
      Sacrifice a land: Add R to your mana pool.

      AKA "Manabarbecue Dragon"?

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    7. Manabarbs Dragon, eh? I could get behind that.

      Do we really need the second line? I see what it does for play, but what does it do for the design, thematically or otherwise?

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    8. Fuse Territorial Dragon and Mana Flare Dragon together and make Overabundance Dragon:

      Mo' Mana Mo' Problems Dragon
      3RR
      Creature - Dragonnnnnn
      4/4
      Flying
      Whenever a player taps a land for mana, that player adds an additional R to his or her mana pool and CARDNAME deals 1 damage to that player.

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    9. I'd print that just for the name.

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    10. This (mo'mana) is really appealing in a strange, midrangey sort of way. I can't tell whether it's better or worse than it looks or whether I want it at the top of a midrange-aggro deck or halfway up the curve to fight tap-out ramp mirrors... or what.

      I've got to think this is a good way of doing a Mana Flare without retreading Nirkana Revenant and a pretty good way of doing Manabarbs overall. It's also fortunate in that it doesn't feel like a colorshifted demon, but treads pretty different ground from the last twelve sets' dragons. Definitely tempting.

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    11. I was thinking a card had already merged Manabarbs and Mana Flare, but the card was Rites of Flourishing which merges Mana Flare with Howling Mine. Maybe this really is an option. I love how the R and the damage feel like one and the same effect. Not sure how it plays. Might just play like half a Manabarbs.

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    12. Jay, you aren't wrong, I even referenced the card in my post. It's Overabundance, from Invasion.

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    13. It certainly does seem different on a body, though.

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    14. Ah, yes you did.

      If Overabundance weren't a thing, I think combining these abilities on a mythic red card would be easy enough. With Overabundance being a thing, I don't know that we can't do it (and I suspect we can) but we need to carefully consider how players will perceive in relation.

      I think we can flavor it as all the land being "on fire" with red mana or as magma shooting up everywhere. The fact that they all add R instead of what they otherwise produce helps a lot there.

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    15. I doubt Overabundance would really play much of a part in how players perceive such a design, considering it's a relatively obscure Invasion-block enchantment that has never been reprinted.

      But yeah, having it add only R would hopefully frame whatever flavor the dragon could have. Mana Geysers and all that.

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  7. As Greg's post addresses, I think that the prominent thing this exercise has revealed to me is that part of why recent WotC dragons are boring is that the most resonant dragon tropes are boring. Or at least played out and stale.

    That may be exceedingly negative, and the dragon-lovers of the world may contest that Moonveil Dragon is in fact the bee's knees, but I wonder if it might be best to try to find slightly less resonant concepts that are actually exciting. More Dragon Mages and fewer Firebreathing Durdle #15.

    I mean, as unimportant as it may be to the ultimate design of this card, try to imagine what the last Dragon was that could have "sold" a set. That may be a sentiment more aligned with tournament-playability, but certainly some folks buy boxes upon boxes because they were excited by Havengul Lich or whatever, even if that's not dominating the Standard scene.

    Better yet: Would any of these dragons convert someone into a "dragon-lover"? Would they inspire someone to build a dragon-themed deck?

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    1. Have you seen the art on any Dragon themed card? The one common feature is that INSANELY awesome dragon on them.

      Seriously, Scorch the Fields makes me want to build a dragon deck. People live dragons. They aren't doing it because of the inspired design or tourniment playability. It's because it has a HUGE DRAGON ON IT. A post about designing a dragon pulled commenters out of the woodwork and is one of the most popular posts on the site.

      Tl;Dr:DRAGONS!

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    2. LET ME GET YOU SOME DRAGON ART, SIR, SO THAT YOU MAY BE SATED.

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    3. Well said, Duncan. And that's the reason I'm comfortable with a simple design like Diamond-Scale Dragon that is resonant and strong, even if it's not innovative.

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  8. i still would like a fully bound dragon to we could see a dragon get more play and it would fit the theme of the set and if it is good while not being to good people might splash some red with duel lands to play it since dragons have not see heavy play in standard in a long time

    Dragon Of The Elements

    legendary creature- dragon


    flying

    4R

    swamp bound - creatures you control get intimidate
    island bound - creatures you control get flying
    forest bound - creatures you control gain +2/+0
    plains bound - creatures you control gain first strike
    elemental bound (have all 5 basic lands) - creatures you control have deathtouch, double strike, +0/+2, and vigilance


    tales of this dragon where told for thousands of years but none ever though that they were true.

    4/4

    elemental bound would be attractive to commander players, and sine you can splash red into decks people would want to play this card just for the buffs that it gives to your creatures. The legendary would prevent people from playing more than 1 and breaking the format by stacking them.

    even if this idea does not make it in i would still like to see elemental bound on some creature and it would make the format exciting.

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    1. Assuming you didn't need actual reminder text for any of the evergreen keywords, there's the issue of spelling out "As long as you control a" for each of the ability words; in addition to the fact that these bonds are now applying attributes to your creatures globally as opposed to all the other bonds in the set which apply them only to the creature in question...

      The legendary type in the core set has been supplanted by Planeswalkers as the defining characters of the generic Magic environment; here it doesn't actually do much considering the only abilities that stack are the unexpected Forest +2/+0 and the Domain'd +0/+2.

      The introduction of a domain-type ability might be interesting and is something we *might* explore on a Tek-style rare artifact creature but generally is not something we want to conflate with the neatness of the allied-color-sharing coming from the common Bonds. Specifically, I don't know why this would be a red dragon or why it would be so helpful to your other creatures.

      +0/+2, Deathtouch, and First Strike are somewhat at odds with one another. Deathtouch, +2/+0, and Double Strike even more so. Double Strike has yet to be featured in the core set, and we've made something of an executive decision not to break that trend unless there's a compelling reason.

      Even if there weren't reminder text, additional rules text to template the ability words, and Ice Cauldron-size font, I can't imagine all the abilities fitting cleanly onto one card, much less with flavor text as well.

      Even if this card were printed, would it make an impact on the format? A can't imagine many decks clamoring for a domain-based Eldrazi Monument that dies to doom blade.

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    2. I have to agree with all of Pasteur's reasons why we wouldn't use this design on a Dragon, but I have to admit that I'm intrigued by the idea of a bond lord—a card that gives you all your creatures Forest Bond (or any other bond). I'll be sure to investigate that possibility elsewhere in the set. Thanks, Paul.

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    3. I agree that a bond lord would be a good idea. Would a bond dragon only with only allied bonds make sense?

      Triplets of the Barrens 5RR
      Flying
      Forest Bond - When ~ enters the battlefield, if you control a forest, put a 5/5 red dragon creature token with flying onto the battlefield.
      Swamp Bond - When ~ enters the battlefield, if you control a swamp, put a 5/5 red dragon creature token with flying onto the battlefield.
      5/5

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    4. Only-allied bond does make more sense. We need to stick to the existing bond abilities, so it would be
      Forest Bond: +1/+2
      Swamp Bond: intimidate
      Maybe on a 5/4 Flying Dragon for 3RR?

      That's far from unprintable, but I don't think it's exciting enough for mythic.

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    5. Kird Ape Dragon doesn't do much for the mythic slot, I agree. It also doesn't feel much like a dragon. You could always modify the text of the card presented to 'if you control green/black permanent' but that feels like an inconsistency in this set.

      That said, Dragons and tokens are two great tastes that etc. Just spitballing here...

      Shivan Scale-Brothers 5RR
      Flying
      When ~ enters the battlefield, put a 5/5 red dragon creature token with flying and 'R: This creature gets +1/+0 until end of turn' onto the battlefield.
      R: ~ gets +1/+0 until end of turn.

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    6. We don't want to retread Broodmate Dragon, but you've got me wondering if we can't cross that with Moonveil Dragon.

      Dragon Bro 6RR
      Flying
      When ~ enters the battlefield, put a 5/5 red dragon creature token with flying OTB named Dragon Bro.
      R: Dragon Bros you control gets +1/+0 until EOT.

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    7. That seems really splashy and fun. I don't know how on-theme it is, but Timmy would eat that stuff up. If we wanted to cost it more aggressively, they could be knocked down to 4/4 and still be crazy-good but alluding to Shivan Dragon is fun too.

      Also, Dragon Bro is the best name.

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  9. I love Gluttonous Tyrant in concept, but in play it's probably going to turn into "Sacrifice a token creature you didn't care about: Tap this awesome creature that cost 6." It's kind of a trap for new players, who won't know what's coming until it happens to them.

    Dragon Mage is, I think, not going to work out. New players aren't going to see that the symmetrical effect is better for them than for the opponent. They're just going to see in the abstract that the opponent also draws, and feel like the card has a serious drawback. I love the card but it's not going to do the work of a core set dragon.

    With all of that said, I like the wacky Dragons because they show new players that red is about more than just the firebreathing ability. Dragons feel played out because we keep seeing roughly the same dragon over and over; people still rouse themselves to think about stuff like Broodmate Dragon, which is a different take on the creature type.

    My vote is for Razing Hellkite (I know, I know, that's not a completely original ability either, but it's not firebreathing). I strongly recommend dropping "Hellkite" and just calling it "Razing Dragon," though. "Hellkite" sounds a bit like "Drake"--an inferior form of dragon.

    P.S. Moonveil Dragon is the bee's knees!

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    1. We should probably point out that the mythic dragon doesn't exclude/preclude the existence of another (most likely at rare.) We've been working on a neat little Whelp, but it may end up that we have Two-Headed Dragon in the set instead (as well as the mythic) to help sate the need for generic dragon-ness if we do go for something slightly off the beaten path.

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    2. Also, I apologize for coming in at the end of a process and saying "go back to the beginning!" It turns out that "Tom" is too short a name to post under. In my defense, there wasn't any explanation of that--just a red dot above the post when I tried to publish it. :-/

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    3. This gives me an idea. What's more epic than a two-headed dragon?

      Three-Headed Hellkite
      3RRR
      Creature - Dragon
      Flying
      2R: CARDNAME deals 3 damage to each of up to three target creatures and/or players. Activate this ability only once each turn.
      6/6

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    4. Amazing how many times Inferno Titan has reared its head during this discussion. In fairness, Inferno Titan is a great dragon design (if you pretend it has flying).

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    5. I think it's different enough from Inferno Titan. Distributing 3 damage as you choose is not like 3 dragon heads each shooting a fireball at a separate target.

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  10. Mentor of Fire is pretty nice. I prefer it at 4/4.

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  11. (Dragon Name) 2RRRRR

    Image: Dragon Burning Fields of Crops

    When (Dragon Name) attacks put a blaze counter on all lands that player controls without a blaze counter. They have "At the beginning of your upkeep, this land deals 1 damage to you" (The land continues to burn even after Dragon Name leaves the battlefield.)

    Haste, Flying

    5/3


    Other ideas would be to destroy a bunch of lands?
    Maybe all lands? At over 5 mana I don't know that land destruction is an issue.

    Armageddon Dragon
    2RRRR

    When Armageddon Dragon comes into play destroy all lands.
    4/4

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  12. My thoughts.

    Dragon Mage: maybe. I like it, as an awesome red dragon. It's true, the "every player" may not be obviously sexy to new players. Maybe an updated version that cost a bit less, and triggered on attacking, but only drew to 3 or 4, or maybe was more explicit about who would probably get to draw cards.

    Princess snatcher: Awesome flavour. I'm worried it's too strong -- repeatedly invalidating your opponent's best creatures is good even for mythic. But then, "you win the game unless your opponent has a removal spell" is what the strongest mythics do, I'm just not used to it. I'm not sure about the colour pie: obviously red rarely gets creature removal not based on damage. But the flavour is so awesome, and the ability is short term and massively helps attacking, I'm inclined to think it's ok.

    (We don't want to do "form of the dragon" too often, but that's still approved design. After all, red got "bounce to hand" in planar chaos, and I think this is similar philosophically.)

    I considered variants such as only taking small creatures, but nothing seemed better.

    Gluttonous Tyrant. I love the flavour. I agree that it'll be frustrating if your opponent can keep feeding it small things. After all, "enchant player. They sacrifice a creature every turn" is pretty good. I'm not sure if there's a way of fixing that.

    Maybe give it a random "eventually wake up" trigger somehow? Maybe "sacrfices a creature with toughness greater than the number of counters on ~"?

    I also considered making the ability mandatory instead of opponent's choice, but that breaks the flavour, and means it may occasionally be better (if your opponent has only one creature, but that's bigger than 7/7 flying). Hm, or maybe do something with "fight"?

    Castle Razer/Rampart Breaker: How about a compromise where you can pay XR or pay 1RR multiple times or something? I agree this is cool, but not as sexy as it might be just because there's been several similar cards before.

    Coldrock. I agree it's a good idea, but doesn't drip flavour. Partly, if you can attack with it at all, you're probably going to attack for 16, so the details don't matter so much... I considered alternatives like "whenever you tap a mountain for mana, ~ gets +1/+0" and giving it some R ability other than firebreathing, but it didn't seem quite right. So I like the concept, but it's mostly just really big.

    In fact, how about just having a flying vanilla 10/4 dragon at mythic?

    Diamond Scale Dragon. I know what you mean that indestructible isn't as new as it was. But I think this still _should_ be sexy.

    Mentor of fire: I think it's cool to have a big dragon that helps an instant/sorcery deck, but maybe a "big smash" dragon would be better for the core set?

    Razing Hellkite: At first I thought it was a bit fiddly, but it's grown on me a lot. It goes well with being 4/4 haste rather than 5, and I think it's good enough you want to play it, but will create a very appropiately wanton red feel if they kill the dragon, but then continue to burn for 2 or 3 a turn.

    OK, what do I think are the sexiest? I vote for #1 Princess Stealer (assuming we decide we're ok with the colour pie) #2 Glutinous Dragon (not as is, but if we find some way to tweak the mechanic so it still has the same feel, but isn't vulnerable to a token swarm) #3 Razing Hellkite

    Jack

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. A Glutinous Dragon would be better than Gluttonous Dragon.

      Sticking to the board.

      Gumming up the works.

      Delete
    2. Updating Dragon Mage to replace hands with four cards is quite tempting for the Spike in me since it hurts your card-hoarding opponent more but as our primary audience is Timmy, I'd rather just make it asymmetrical.

      Another Gluttonous Tyrant based on Jack's suggestion:

      Gluttonous Tyrant 3RR
      Creature-Dragon
      Flying
      If Gluttonous Tyrant would attack a player, he or she may put a +1/+1 counter on it and sacrifice X permanents, where X is the number of +1/+1 counters on it. If he or she does, remove it from combat.
      6/6

      I like the 10/4 french/vanilla idea, but would rather save it for an Elemental.

      Delete
    3. If we go with Dragon Mage, we could put optionally put a Sudden Impact or pseudo-Cerebral Vortex type card in. I don't know how concerned Timmy is with your opponent getting to draw too - look at how popular Howling Mine is with new players (in non Turbo-Fog/Owling Mine situations). The potential to use the Wheel of Fate to combo off with a Megrimmish effect (especially alongside Burning Inquiry) is a Timmy/Johnny dream all of it its own.

      Delete
  13. I think Gluttonous Tyrant can feel very different based on wording.

    Gluttonous Tyrant
    4RR 7/5 Flying, defender
    At the beginning of your combat step, target opponent may sacrifice a creature. If he or she does, put a +1/+1 counter on ~. Otherwise, ~ loses defender and gains trample until end of turn.

    Dragon of the Pit
    4RRR 5/5 Flying
    At the beginning of your upkeep, target opponent may sacrifice a creature. If he or she does, tap ~ and put a +1/+1 counter on ~. Otherwise, ~ deals damage equal to its power to that player.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sengir Dragon 3RR
      Creature- Dragon
      Flying
      Whenever a creature dealt damage by Sengir Dragon this turn dies, put a +1/+1 counter on Sengir Dragon.
      4/4

      That's how this card feels to me. Sure, basically removing flying by allowing the opponent to chump with any creature allows you to increase the Dragon's power, but if I play a dragon I just want to attack with it.

      Delete
  14. "Protection from unequipped creatures" could be a way to represent Duncan's dragon that can only be killed with a Dragonslayer sword, or Jules' "protection from non-Knights" dragon.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I considered that, and it could be interesting, but it didn't feel mythic. Protection from creatures is best when the creature is small or doesn't have another form of evasion, because otherwise it just doesn't do much. It's not like many creatures trade with dragons too often.

      Delete
    2. I love the flavor of "Protection from unequipped, non-Knight creatures", but despite being all-upside and REALLY strong, it *reads* like a downside/weakness. And again, the whole flying thing basically negates it.

      Delete
  15. Trying to get into the spirit of dragons a bit more:

    Dragon Dragon
    4RR
    Creature - Dragon Dragon (M)
    4/4
    Flying
    Nonbasic lands are Volcanoes. I mean Mountains. They're Mountains. That look like Volcanoes.
    4R: Dragon Dragon deals damage to target creature or player equal to the number of Mountains on the battlefield.

    Dragon Dragon makes your fancy lands erupt with jealousy that they aren't casting dragons.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I like this even without the damage-dealing rider:

      The Big Cheese 4RR

      Flying

      All non-basic lands are Mountains. (Forests, Islands, Mountains, Plains, and Swamps are basic lands.)

      7/7

      This makes playing a Dragon feel like a big deal. Suddenly, there are rivers of lava! Molten rock running everywhere! A DRAGON just showed up!

      It also offers a bit of help for the new player, who may feel constrained to run mono-red and be frustrated playing against multicolored high-expense decks.

      The bad news is that it punishes playing multiple colors in what's supposed to be the multicolored basic set. Maybe a good idea whose time hasn't come?

      Delete
    2. Dragon of the Moon 2R
      Creature - Dragon
      Nonbasic lands are Mountains.
      2/2


      Firemind Dragon 2RRRR
      Flying - 4/4
      Whenever you draw a card, Firemind Dragon deals 1 damage to target creature or player.
      {T}: Draw a card.

      Delete
    3. Another version of Pasteur's Firemind Dragon

      Firemind Dragon 2RRRR
      Flying - 4/4
      Whenever you draw or discard a card, Firemind Dragon deals 1 damage to target creature or player.
      {T}: Discard a card, then draw a card.

      Delete
    4. I could totally see that in an expert set. Very cool. Just a bit, I dunno, thinky for core-red.

      Delete
    5. http://goblinartisans.blogspot.com/2011/06/ccdd-061411molten-collossus.html?showComment=1308132199243&m=1#c2369250648133858603

      If you throw flying on that it seems fine. Especially if we're pushing strong dual lands in the set, this could be a fine mythic hoser. But it's not a top down design, in fact its very much a bottom up

      Delete
    6. So that everyone doesn't have to click through, this is what Duncan's suggesting:

      Bloodpaint Dragon 2RRRR
      Creature-Dragon
      Flying
      ~’s power and toughness are each equal to the number of Mountains on the battlefield.
      Nonbasic lands are Mountains.
      */*

      I like it. Not my favorite of the Dragon tropes, but not bad. Has a huge effect on the board and could be massive. Nice helping of Timmy and Spike. Wish we could name it Volcanic Dragon.

      Delete
    7. Yeah, the only things I might change now are to adjust its CC to 5R (because it clearly wants monored, but there's no reason to punish Scion of the UrDragon decks in EDH). And for the name, I'd go with something like Magma Drenched Hellkite, with art evocative of a dragon dripping with lava.

      Delete
  16. I'm not sure it was an intentional suggestion, but Tom's mention of Form of the Dragon makes me wonder, could Form of the Dragon be our mythic dragon?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I suggested that in the old google doc 2+ months ago. And I still think it could have been fine. Both Form of the Dragon and Two Headed Dragon fit that mold well in my mind, but I also really like cutting my teeth on this.

      It may have worked at some point to go with a reprint here, but we're nearing 200 posts on this topic with new designs. Feels like a cop out to go with a reprint now.

      Delete
    2. "The Sunk Cost Fallacy as it applies to Amateur Magic: The Gathering Mythic Dragon Design"

      Personally, I'd probably be happier with Outcast (lands!) or Mage (megrims!) but Form of the Dragon is definitely palatable. It plays so well with Fateful Hour, too!

      Delete
    3. I was more inclined to a reprint when there seemed to be a strict deadline. Im sure wizards is the same. But filling a mythic slot on a fictional set lets people flex their creative muscles. It's not like keeping the discussion open for a while longer costs us anything. Testing can continue without a mythic dragon, etc. meanwhile, it's clearly a popular project.

      Delete
  17. What if we turn the Gluttonous Tyrant trope around? This Dragon can only be roused to action with a proper bribe.

    Lazy Tyrant 2RR
    Creature-Dragon
    Flying
    ~ can't attack or block unless you pay 2RR.
    6/6

    Mana is the bribe there, and I feel okay with that, but we could also be more literal:

    Greedy Tyrant 4RR
    Creature-Dragon
    Flying
    If ~ would attack or block, search your library for an artifact card and exile it. If you can't, ~ doesn't attack or block.
    When ~ dies, put each card exiled by it into your hand.
    6/6

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Making things cheaper by giving them crippling drawbacks doesn't make anyone happy. That's the lesson of Prophecy. Besides, is that Greedy Tyrant really more fun or balanced than:


      Greedy Tyrant 4RR
      Creature-Dragon
      Flying
      If ~ attacks or blocks, search your library for an artifact card and exile it.
      When ~ dies, put each card exiled by it into your hand.
      5/5

      ?
      That card's too similar to Hording Dragon for my taste, but it's hardly insane.

      Delete
    2. The sacrifice a creature thing is super-flavorful. I'd hate to see it go. Maybe the trick is to not make the sacrifice appeasement completely nerf the dragon.

      Greedy Tyrant 4RR
      Flying
      Whenever ~ attacks, the defending player may sacrifice a creature. If they do not, each player discards their hand and draws 7 cards.
      5/5

      or

      Greedy Tyrant 4RR
      Flying
      Whenever ~ attacks, the defending player may sacrifice a creature. If they do not, untap all creatures that attacked this turn. After the next main phase, there is an additional combat phase followed by an additional main phase.
      5/5

      Delete
    3. Your first Tyrant, Jacob, puts too much control in the opponent's hand. They'll sacrifice when you have more to gain from a new hand and they won't when they do.
      The second is a pretty exciting effect. As worded, it affords infinite combat steps against a creatureless player, but that can be tweaked. Question is, what's the flavor of a Dragon that makes your team attack more often?

      I'm starting to see that while the sacrifice thing does fit some dragon tropes, it feels very demony in Magic. Maybe we're better off saving this card for a demon at some point. The fact that it's the defender sacrificing and not the owner is a substantial difference, but is it enough?

      Delete
    4. I think you're right, Jay. That second Tyrant fits perfectly as a BR Demon. (Let's put it in our GA:RavII file for now - so that we can play with it in our Fauxture-Future League testing!)

      Delete
    5. Yeah, working the Dragon Mage template into the Tyrant comes out a bit strange. Maybe it's because the Dragon Mage effect is so rarely used in red these days?

      I think we can fix the flavor problem of the Tyrant by changing the text to this:

      Whenever ~ attacks during this turn's first combat phase, the defending player may sacrifice a creature. If they do not, untap ~. After the next main phase, there is an additional combat phase followed by an additional main phase.

      The flavor is still a bit demon-y, but at least it is clearer here: without a tribute, the enraged Dragon makes a second pass.

      Delete
    6. I like the references to Hoarding Dragon here but I don't like that the Tyrant fetches artifacts from my library. (I know I'm a few paragraphs behind, please bear with me)
      I think that's is more flavourful for him to have to eat an artifact from my board each turn. It is a little reminiscent of Demons but by keeping your own sacrifices as artifacts it feels more like giving him a tribute of gold/valuables every turn instead of having to sacrifice my loved ones.

      Greedy Tyrant 3RR
      Flying
      ~ can't attack or block.
      Sacrifice an artifact: ~ can attack or block this turn.
      6/6

      The stats are undoubtedly wonky but I wanted to give an idea of the flavour I'm talking about.

      Actually it might be better if:

      Greedy Tyrant 3RR
      Flying, Defender
      Sacrifice an artifact: ~ loses defender until end of turn
      6/6

      This seems a little more flavourful to me as I'm sure the dragon is always happy to defend his treasure, just reluctant to leave it exposed.

      I also wanted to mention that the Hoarding Dragon also helps to mechanically support the Princess Snatcher from the main article up there.
      I think the Princess Snatcher is really flavourful albiet really powerful and it's definitely one of my favourites.
      Maybe you could reword the Snatcher so that it steals a princess or deals damage to the player and not both?

      Delete
  18. What if Diamond-Scale Dragon's scales were also hella reflective?

    What if Kiki-Jiki broke that mirror and unleashed a really awesome dragon?

    Mirror-Scale Dragon
    5RR
    Creature - Dragon
    5/5
    Flying
    Mirror-Scale Dragon is indestructible.
    Whenever Mirror-Scale Dragon attacks, put a token that's a copy of target nonlegendary creature onto the battlefield tapped and attacking. Sacrifice that token at end of combat.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I love it. Is there a clean way to make it not copy itself, or is that a qualm at all?

      Delete
    2. If that were an issue in development, all that needs to be changed is add "another" before "target".

      Delete
    3. What if those scales were really, REALLY reflective? I like the idea that it copies itself.

      Mirage Dragon
      4RR
      Creature - Dragon
      Flying
      Whenever a spell targets Mirage Dragon, you may change the targets of that spell.
      3R: Put a token that's copy of Mirage Dragon onto the battlefield. That token has haste. Exile it at the beginning of the next end step.
      4/4

      I love that this can make decoys of itself, then reflect spells at them. Its reflect ability is a little more flavorful than indestructible, and it's a little less altruistic than Mirror-Scale. It's also neat that it can cast Heat Shimmer on itself.

      Delete
    4. I had actually started writing an article about forms of protection for red fatties, but then I never finished it and forgot about it. But the most interesting ones that I thought best fit red's pie were variations on Spell/Ability Redirection and Targeting Punishment (a la Kaervek, the Merciless).

      Now, one of the biggest issues is that the clause you have functions a whole lot like Hexproof, as your opponent just won't target Mirage Dragon. And why would you target it just to change targets?

      As such, some possible solutions:

      Mirror-Scale Dragon v.2
      3RRR
      Creature - Dragon
      5/5
      Flying
      Whenever an opponent casts a spell, if it could target ~, you may reselect all targets of that spell spell at random.
      Whenever ~ becomes the target of a spell, you may copy that spell. You may choose new targets for the copy.

      Now, that's probably a bit too complex, or just annoying, but forced random selection is a way of circumventing the whole "my opponent just won't target the thing!"

      Opening things up to the Fun Department:

      Mirror-Scale Dragon v.3
      5RR
      Creature - Dragon
      5/5
      Flying
      Whenever a player casts a spell, you may copy that spell for each Mirror-Scale Dragon on the battlefield. You may choose new targets for each copy.

      Another big issue with developing some of these concepts, which obviously plague most Dragons in general, is that additional abilities on Dragons always end up feeling absurdly "win-more". Spell-copying distinctly falls under this category, so it's less-than-ideal, but hey, folks like copying things. (As much as they like Dragons?)

      If you really wanted to be wild, you could take the first Random Selection ability and pair it with the Heat Shimmer, which creates a real madhouse of randomness triggers. But I suspect Randomness isn't totally appropriate for this slot.

      Delete
    5. Our other non-PW mythic "Heat-Shimmer Djinn" already does a lot of creature copying and very well, so while I like the dragons like that, they are trumped for M13.

      Not sure why two MSD3s make four copies instead of two.
      The Grip of Chaos dragon has potential, at least for griefer Timmy.

      Delete
    6. I think it's fine for the ability to act most like hexproof, because it still has a bigger pants down moment than most hex proof guys. After all, if it's the only non black creature, flying creature some spells can't be redirected. Like doomblads and plummet. It's not a huge pants down moment, but it's smaller than frost giants while larger then actual hexproof. It also still gets hit by abilities.

      Mirage v2 4RR
      Creature- dragon
      Flying
      Whenever mirage dragon is the only target of a spell, you may change the target to another creature.
      3r: heat shimmer
      4/4

      That allows spells like into the maw take it out because it has two targets. It also means that it's way more vulnerable if it's the only creature on the board. If you wanted it to be even more restrictive, you could change it to just being able to redirect to a creature you control. Either way, it seems like the ability will come into play more often than hexproof, even if only to get the controller to make a token in response.

      I don't mind your random targets, but that seems a lot more difficult to resolve. I don't even begin to know the order in which you'd do that for targets that need to have the same controller. But it's a neat idea.

      If there's already a dijinn that does creature copying, why not post it? If its awesome, then that's great, but if it could be incorperated it could mean another mythic slot in red. I mean, dijinn are largely blue anyway, and it could be fun to have a red Wheel of fortune copy to fill the slot (ala time reversal)

      Delete
    7. Currently:
      3RR 4/4
      Whenever Heat-Shimmer Djinn or another creature enters the battlefield under your control, if it isn’t a token, put a token that’s a copy of that creature onto the battlefield. It has haste and “At the beginning of the end step, exile this creature.”


      I feel like reprinting Incendiary Command might be more prudent than printing a 3RR "Wheel of Chance", if it came to that.

      You do have a point, though, that in modern design, this should probably be an Efreet.

      Delete
    8. There are a lot of ways to do the wheel of fortune spell.

      Each player discards their hand and then draws four cards.

      Opponents discard three cards, then draw three cards. You draw three cards, then discard three.

      Also, you guys know about Minion Reflector, right?

      Delete
  19. Ooh this discussion got pretty interesting, didn't it?
    I like a lot of the new ideas here, including (but not limited to) the Manabarbs and Blood Moon dragons.

    Also, I probably underrated Diamond Dragon the first time. The more likely issue with it is that it's really big, and has no "pants-down" moment. Unless it's going to be in the super huge group (Darksteel Colossus), it might be oppressive in limited and casual.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Would putting Manabarbs and Blood Moon on the same Dragon be a design nonbo?

      I'd be fine with making Diamond Dragon just huge. 8RR for an 8/8 flying indestructible dragon, for instance.
      Or we could build in a vulnerability… something like we tried in an iteration of the hates-knights version: "Whenever a Knight ETB, sacrifice ~" or "Equipment have '6, Sacrifice this: Destroy ~.'"
      I also wonder if we can't keep it clean and balance it by just ensuring that every color has a common answer to it. Currently in the file: Diabolic Edict, Act of Treason, Disperse/Frost Breath, Excommunicate/Parole, more at uncommon. Green has Giant Spider and Plummet which don't cut it here; but we could find something.

      Delete
    2. Just my opinion (I don't have a solid design argument for it) but I'd rather not see Blood Moon and Manabarbs on the same card. Partially because I think Magus of the Moon would sell packs and be a really solid re-addition post-ISD, and partially because that feels kind of like dancing around Price of Progress without hitting Anathema Dragon, right?

      Power/balance levels aside, has indestructible been around long enough that it's not just an ability for green, white, and artifacts?

      Delete
    3. In M11 limited, it was standard practice to draft one, maybe two answers to Baneslayer Angel. Then any game where the opponent had a Baneslayer was a race, with the opponent looking for the angel while you looked for your answer(s).

      Was that good? It's an honest question. I sometimes had fun when I "drew my out," but sometimes my opponent crushed my life total while developing an unstoppable lead. I didn't mind that so much, but it promotes a certain sense that luck trumps skill.

      Before going with Diamond Dragon, I think it's important to be sure that that "racing to specific cards" dynamic is a good one--especially since many normal answers people might otherwise want to draft, like Fireball and Terror effects, won't work.

      Delete
    4. Diamond Dragon is indestructible as long as…
      …No opponents control a Knight.
      …No one controls a creature with higher power and toughness.
      …You have 20+ life.
      …You control more mountains than any opponent
      …it's untapped.
      …all your lands are un/tapped.
      …your hand is empty.

      Delete
    5. Diamond Dragon is indestructible as long as you control an artifact.
      Think about it.

      Delete
    6. Phylactery Lich.

      Think about it.

      Delete
    7. Not that I think it's a bad idea, but Phylactery Lich had super awesome flavor and was just a rare.

      Even though Covetous Dragon did that schtick first, I still wouldn't want to print such a similar concept on one of the flagship mythics.

      Delete
    8. Lich I hadn't forgotten about, but Covetous Dragon, that's a doozy. Not to mention it feels like partial-metalcraft.

      There are a ton of interesting thresholds to make DD's indestructibility dependant.
      ...~ attacked this turn.
      ...you control no other creatures.
      ...domain.

      I see some justification for all of these. Do any stand out to people?

      Delete
    9. http://magiccards.info/isd/en/3.html

      Angelica Overseer also fits this mold

      Delete
    10. ...unless an opponent controls a 1/1 creature.

      Delete
  20. Wow, 95 comments! Anyway, a few thoughts from me:

    I like Diamond-Scale Dragon a lot. Simple yet brimming with Timmy-appeal.

    It's funny how Rampart Breaker does read so much better than Castle Razer even though it's much worse. I think "5 damage" sounds better, and 5RR looks more mythic.

    I don't like Dragon of Coldrock because it looks clunky. I don't like the Manabarbs dragon because damaging yourself makes Timmy very unhappy and the mythic Dragon slot is very squarely aimed at Timmy.

    I do rather like Dragon Mage, because finding a good reprint that plays well in the new set is a good achievement. I don't see why it's a cop-out to go with a reprint; a good reprint can get people just as excited as a good new card. (I'm reminded of Terminate's return in Alara Reborn.)

    ReplyDelete
  21. http://creativefan.com/70-stunning-artworks-of-dragons/

    ReplyDelete
  22. Can we do "Sacrifice a Human" Dragon, or is that too explicit a connection to the preceding block?

    Something like Gluttonous Tyrant, but almost all upside.

    The Human Abyss
    3RRR
    Creature - Dragon (M)
    6/3
    Flying
    At the beginning of each upkeep, that player sacrifices a Human creature. If that player doesn't, The Human Abyss deal 3 damage to that player and each creature without flying he or she controls.

    Still looks a bit demonish, but also kinda dragon-like.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ignoring how demon-y this and all of the sacrifice-dragons are, specifying human is too Innistrad-y. Vampires and Demons only eat humans on Innistrad, because they are the only non-monster race. We've got Elves, Goblins, etc on most other planes.

      Delete
    2. I like that one. Here's a version with some tweaks.

      Devouring Overlord
      4RR
      Creature - Dragon
      5/5
      Flying
      At the beginning of each opponent's upkeep, that player may sacrifice a creature. If that player doesn't, CARDNAME deals 5 damage to that player and each creature without flying he or she controls.

      Delete
    3. I think the key difference between this and all the other "sacrifice a guy" dragons is that it's all-upside. Not "sacrifice a guy to make my mythic suck", but "give me tribute our I'll burninate your town".

      I also think making the sacrifice optional and having the penalty be a 5-point earthquake keeps this out of Demon territory.

      Delete
    4. Though now that I think about it, 5 is probably too large a number, since it makes the sacrifice basically mandatory. Should probably be 3 or 4, which means no more matching it to power, unless we want a terrifying 4/4 tyrant. Bleh.

      Delete
    5. Yeah, as appealing as that symmetry may be, I think it's best to just concede that the penalty-burn power doesn't have to be as great as the total power simply because total power includes things like the dragon's ability to bite/punch/tail whip and otherwise maul its opponents.

      Delete
    6. Indeed. Like this, then:

      Devouring Overlord
      3RRR
      Creature - Dragon
      6/6
      Flying
      At the beginning of each opponent's upkeep, that player may sacrifice a creature. If that player doesn't, CARDNAME deals 3 damage to that player and each creature without flying he or she controls.

      Delete
    7. The dealing damage to creatures makes flavor sense, but it doesn't make practical sense. Why would a player choose not to sacrifice a creature that was going to die to the pyroclasm? By the time a player was unwilling to sacrifice a creature, it's virtually guaranteed that nothing's going to die to 3 points of damage on the ground. Maybe:


      Devouring Overlord
      5RR
      Creature - Dragon
      Flying
      At the beginning of your upkeep, each opponent may sacrifice a creature. If a player doesn't, ~ deals damage to that player equal to it's power.
      R: ~ get +1/+0 until end of turn.
      If you respect it, it won't attack you. Unless it feels like it.
      6/6

      You can also replace creature with land. Sacrificing creatures really feels more like demons. Sacrificing artifacts or lands feel more like treasures for a dragon.

      Delete
    8. Keep in mind that Havelock was simply retaining the function that my original design had, a function that made more sense when the sacrifice had to be a specific type of creature, as a dragon who hasn't been fed his humans will go in search of a substitute meal.

      Though this is a bit out of Red's pie, a neat flavor ability might be something like:

      Hungry Hungry Dragon
      4RR
      Creature - Dragon
      5/5
      Flying
      At the beginning of your upkeep, you may have CARDNAME lose flying until end of turn. If you do, destroy target creature without flying. CARDNAME gets +X/+0 until end of turn, where X is equal to the destroyed creature's power.

      Delete
    9. That's a good point. What if it made you sacrifice the creature with the highest toughess?

      Delete
    10. Or... how else does one decide which creature is tastiest?

      Delete
    11. Maybe it just eats ALL the peasants

      Trogdor 3RR
      Creature- Dragon
      Flying
      When Trogdor enters the battlefield, it deals 2 damage to each creature without flying. For each creature destroyed this way, put a +1/+1 counter on Trogdor.
      4/4

      Delete
    12. Random sacrifice would be pretty good in terms of gameplay, but it screws up the flavor of, "Let's feed Bob to the dragon so the rest of us can live."

      Delete
    13. "At the beginning of your upkeep, each opponent sacrifices a creature he she controls at random. If a creature sacrificed this way has total power and toughness less than five, destroy target land and CARDNAME deals five damage to that creature's controller."

      I think random sacrifice could work in terms of flavor, because it can suggest some sort of civil chaos. No one wants to be sacrificed, even for the greater good, so they all bicker among themselves until someone gets murdered and fed to the dragon.

      Delete
    14. I like it better as a choice:

      "At the beginning of each opponent's upkeep, that player may sacrifice a creature at random. If that player doesn't, CARDNAME deals 3 damage to that player and each creature without flying he or she controls."

      Still reads pretty ugly, though.

      Delete
  23. External Combustion Dragon
    4RR
    1/4
    Flying
    {1}{R}: Double ~'s power until end of turn.
    When ~ dies, it deals damage equal to its power to [target creature and/or player, each creature (and each player), or if we want some sort of drawback, which is highly unlikely, you.)

    If we wanted it to get REALLY stupid, we could have it blow up permanents randomly equal to P, or something.

    ReplyDelete