Tuesday, June 17, 2014

CCDD 061714—Slingshot Spider

Cool Card Design of the Day
6/17/2014 - It's pretty awkward that this art shows the spider attacking an earth-bound target, but I was lucky to find a fantasy illustration of a spider at all. I can only suffer so many macro photographs of real spiders before I lose the ability to sleep, or keep my feet under the desk.

Was tempted to omit reach entirely, and the card would be more balanced if I did, but it just didn't feel right. Slingshot Spider could fight a flying creature instead if we changed the name, and that wouldn't push the power level quite as hard, but frankly, I think the game can survive another aggressively anti-flying uncommon in green.


  1. Fighting a flier would be GREAT for like a webcasting spider.

  2. "Deals its power in damage" is unpleasant rules text. It seems like if you want its effect to scale with Anthem-effects or pump spells with the ability on the stack, it'd be better to have it just fight. Otherwise, just set the value to 2.

    1. Would "deals damage equal to its power" still have the desired effect?

    2. Huh. I wasn't sure, but I searched: http://gatherer.wizards.com/Pages/Search/Default.aspx?text=+[%22damage%20equal%20to%20its%20power%22]+[%22enters%20the%20battlefie%22]

      It seems the only results on gatherer for both "damage equal to its power" and "enters the battlefield" are ones which have some other effect which makes it relevant. Any other "shoot on enter" just specify an amount of damage.

      Although I thnk that's only because pump effects only rarely apply to something entering the battlefield: I think it's ok to have other "damage equal to its power" effects that aren't fight.

      FWIW, I like the card otherwise, I'm surprised that exact combination doesn't exist already. I'm not sure of the exact P/T/damage combination, but for uncommon it seems fine. It mgiht be able to exist at common at 2/4 for 4CMC or without reach.

      If it's a spider, it absolutely needs reach. There's only two spiders ever that have not had reach, and both are really old. It could be an archer with the damage ETB but not reach, but I think it's more natural for it to have reach -- lots of other flier-hate cards have reach, it'd almost be confusing not to.

    3. I agree about the static damage, particularly for an efficient card that's likely a 2:1.

      I think you could argue that the free Leaf Arrow is anti-flyer enough without the reach, but more people will be satisfied with reach.

    4. Just as a note, I was also addressing the specific syntax used in the mock-up, which I assumed was an attempt at overall abbreviation and the elimination of mathematical language. However, the expression "deal (its) power" makes the mechanic less clear, as it could be construed as something as weird as the spider granting its power statistic AND dealing damage equal to that value to target creature.

      I'm all for making rules text simpler and/or more intuitive, but that's not doing it.

    5. Not a conscious effort. Probably just how I hear it in my head.

  3. I vote for ETB fight. This makes poor Oran-Rief Recluse look like such a pansy.

    Also, needs to be "may".

    1. Even that is already pretty brutal, since the way most decks that are based on putting out a few Wind Drakes answer threats like this by bouncing them most of the time. The more I play, the more I dislike the gameplay of "haha this card shuts down your whole deck," and the original proposal is right there.

      Given it is meant to be a stinger, you could also make it a sac effect.

    2. 'm with Tommy Occhipinti on this, he makes very good points. I wonder if this is a better design:
      Stingshot Spider 1GG
      Creature - Spider
      Sacrifice CARDNAME: Destroy target creature with flying.