Tuesday, August 6, 2013

CCDD 080613—Bad Dream

Cool Card Design of the Day
8/6/2013 - Bad Dream is a discard spell with a built-in mini-game.

If you cast Bad Dream turn two on the play, you have the option see your opponent's entire hand and put them down a card. But if you do, it'll be the last card they show you, and they can make it their least important card. Alternately, they might know you're looking for a certain card and will eventually find it, choosing to simply show it to you first so you don't gain any additional information.

I wouldn't be surprised if Bad Dream turns out to be a little too strong at {1}{B} or a little thinky for a common, but I personally love cards that give each player an extra chance to be clever.


  1. Has to be uncommon-plus. Might be a sweet Spikey rare discard spell for constructed at cost B (is it better than Thoughtseize?). Needs a clause to not draw the game if opponent reveals their last card and caster says "no thanks, keep going".

  2. Needs some tweaking, since an opponent with no cards in hand can't reveal a card.

    It's complex, probably more fitting at uncommon.

    Maybe this: "Target opponent reveals a card from his or her hand. If a card is revealed this way, you may have him or her discard it or have him or her reveal another card. Repeat this process until that opponent discards a card or has no cards in hand."

    More wordy, but it works around a lot of the problems.

  3. Most cheap discard spells prevent you from forcing the other player to discard a land, does this need it?

  4. The fact that this costs 2 and Inquisition of Kozilek, Duress, etc. cost 1 mean that decks that want this will already have perfect knowledge of the opponent's hand, so jumping through a bunch of hoops to get to that information feels clunky. Surely there have to be better ways to get the mindgame aspects without all the time-consuming recursion, right?

    "Target player reveals a card from his or her hand. You may have the player discard that card or another card at random."

    1. that version works a lot better, It's takes less time to resolve, so it could get away with being a uncommon complexity wise. the original couldn't see less than rare I'd bet.

  5. Don't worry about templating. There's a team for that.

    I have to agree, this is probably rare.

    I do worry that Bad Dreams could nab someone's last land card if they're not careful how they present their cards, or if their opponent is telepathic/lucky.

  6. A weird and interesting mini-game!

    For Evan and axx1e's point, you could make it an ETB effect on a higher cost creature.

    I wish the consequence was bigger to make it feel that it was worth it for both sides to think very hard. What if you could cast the card that was revealed instead of forcing it to be discarded?

    1. I like very much where your head's at here. Looking for solutions that preserve the heart of the design.

      Putting it on a creature makes it a little less pure, but a tricky imp or devious demon that does this seems like great flavor, and the higher cost solves the land problem nicely.

      Casting the chosen card changes your motivation and the mini-game substantially. That you're looking to maximize your value instead of deprive your opponent means you'll just take the first thing that gives you serious value or costs a bunch. If the opponent doesn't have much in that way, they might get you to pass up a B card for a C card, but usually the mind game won't matter, I'm guessing.