Tuesday, September 25, 2012

CCDD Pyretic Memory & Visceral Memory

Cool Card Design of the Day
9/25/2012 - Here are a pair of executions on the same idea. I don't remember the inspiration, but I know Pyretic Memory came first. Maybe I was looking for an effect that could be upgraded based on a coin flip.

Having made that, it immediately led me to the simpler execution:
It's fair to point out that this doesn't compare well with Snapcaster Mage, but honestly very little in this game does. It isn't strictly worse, though, because it allows you to cast a sorcery at instant speed. Regardless, we can't be competing with cards like Snapcaster or power creep will become power landslide.


  1. Free CMC spells of cost 6 or more that got dumped in the yard? Scary. It is a hit or miss though.

    It would be hatted by lots loved by extremely few, which is ok once in a while. The second implementation would be ok if it got developped to cost a bit more.

  2. Technically, this isn't strictly worse than Snapcaster, but it plays that way...which is important, because players have long memories. If you print Snapcaster, don't print something that plays in the same design space as Snapcaster but is way, way worse.

    I think the easiest way to improve this design would be to print it at a higher mana cost (probably 2R) and make it a cantrip. Now there are reasons why you would want this card and *not* Snapcaster (Niv-Mizzet, the Firemind decks, for example.)

    I'd also say "instant or sorcery" just because it's a distinction without much resonance to most players.

    Also, that flavor text seems a bit too risque for Magic..

    1. The solution is to never print cards like Snapcaster.

    2. Didn't they JUST do this with Archeomancer in M13? Returning cards from the graveyard is such a natural Magic trope that it's amazing how little we see it.

      Honestly, I really wish Red had more of a share of the spell reanimation pie.

      Remember R
      Return target instant or sorcery from your graveyard to you hand.

      That's super low hanging fruit.

      Follow through 3R
      Cast target instant or sorcery from your graveyard.

    3. It is confusing to me that they say "man, I wish Red had more design space" and then they fail to follow through on preserving Red's possession of certain concepts like returning instants and sorceries to hand.

      I mean, yes, we just had Past in Flames, the descendent of Recoup. But Snapcaster Mage arguably should've been Red for developmental reasons and color pie concerns, and where Blue gets Archaeomancer and Call to Mind in core sets, Red gets Surreal Memoir in expert sets.

      Not cool.

    4. The problem is that Red competes with Blue for spell based mechanics. That fight always ends in Blue's favor, because it's tricky that way.

    5. Maybe we could re-open the "Blue instant, Red sorcery" debate?

  3. If it only hits sorceries, should it be an instant? I'm unsure how the timing works out; could somebody help me out here?

    1. You're correct Tigt, there would need to be another clause that says you can ignore timing restrictions. I'm guessing Jay may have just neglected to change the card-type after revising the main text, or he just wasn't thinking about that.

    2. Templating. I did mean for it to allow you to cast a sorcery at instant speed.

      That said, there's no reason it shouldn't be able to fetch instants if it can fetch sorceries.

    3. There's no need for the ignore timing restrictions clause. It says "You may play that card" which means right now, not "You may play that card until end of turn" which means only when you could normally play it. You wouldn't normally even be able to cast instants while another spell is resolving, after all.

    4. I guess I felt like once you have to pay costs, you're abiding by the normal process.

      And looking at Memory Plunder, I don't get why textual timing restrictions can't be ignored, but the inherent timing distinction between Instant and Sorcery is ignored. Shouldn't we be looking at sorceries as though they have an inherent line of text that says "you may only cast this during your main phase, and only if the stack is empty"? If such a line existed on a card, would Memory Plunder have to obey it?