Thursday, March 31, 2016

CCDD 033116—Thraben Bandit

Cool Card Design of the Day
2/20/2016 - This illustration begged for a Shadows over Innistrad design.

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

CCDD 033016—Desert Hope

Cool Card Design of the Day
3/30/2016 - A discard card for a thirsty plane.

CCDD 033016 -- Cluebombs

Cool Card Design of the Day
03/30/16 - I'm a big fan of clues in SoI (although I'm still not convinced Investigate was necessary as a keyword), and I really like that there are a few cards that care about them as a subtype. I thought it would be interesting to make some nontoken clues (which include the cantrip ability).

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Spotlight Challenge 5—Zefferal

This fortnight, Zefferal is going to take lead on this challenge:

Design 8 'big' commons that will help break stalemates. Design at least one for each color. They needn't relate to each other, or even belong to the same set. Thanks to Nich for the challenge idea.

Tesla Design Challenge 0328016 — Top-Down Designs

Hello again, everyone! Yes, this week is a Tesla double feature! Yesterday, I discussed some approaches to filling the Tesla set skeleton as a team. One such method I mentioned was producing 'bounties', various ideas that simply must be in the final set as a card. This week, we're going to be focusing on one such bounty... the top-down design!

Monday, March 28, 2016

Tesla: Skeleton Key, or, Approaches to Team Set Design

Hello again, everyone! Over the past few weeks we've done some serious work on the set skeleton for Tesla, such as in the Filling in the Skeleton challenge, as a part of the final push to get the project closer to serious playtesting. Today, I'd like to talk about how the process of filling the skeleton has gone, some discussion of approaches to collaboratively filling the set skeleton as a team, and more.

Weekend Art Challenge Review 032516—Answer Cards

Weekend Art Challenge Review
Hello all! Anastase here, reviewing the answer cards challenge, or should I say the "take that -----!" challenge?

The idea behind an answer card is to find the question (a bit like Jeopardy if I understand correctly what that game is about?).

Here the questions generally were:
Which mechanic is not fun when abused?
Mechanic X is not fun when abused, how can I answer it?

I took the liberty of adding flavor text to all the cards submitted based on suggestions in the comments.

Strangely, the main controversy in the challenge was weather the art #1 by Roswell-Ivory is an angel or an archon. (I would lean toward the second.)

On with the cards!

Friday, March 25, 2016

Weekend Art Challenge 032516—Answer Cards

Weekend Art Challenge
Hello Artisans. Anastase here. This week I suggest you the following challenge:

There are in Magic many 'answer' cards. R&D uses those as safety plugs to prevent crazy combos to dominate constructed formats, by giving you silver bullets against them.

Cards like Grafdigger's Cage, Loxodon Smiter and Stony Silence come to mind.

Design an 'answer' card that either:
  • uses the word 'instead'
  • specifically prevents your opponent from doing a small subset of possible actions
Bonus point if the card is neither oppressive nor totally useless in other situations.

Thursday, March 24, 2016

CCDD 032416—Woman-o'-War

Cool Card Design of the Day
3/24/2016 - Good merfolk illustrations tend to be harder to come by, so I always tuck them away when I find them. This one, by castaguer93, was more of a mer-jellyfish. You will not be surprised which card I decided to reference in my design.

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

CCDD 032316—Danish Prince

Cool Card Design of the Day
3/23/2016 - Another variation on the traditional tribal lord. With threshold-1 instead of scaling count-me.

Devin Low's 2007 article introducing the count-me spectrum is relevant to the recent discussion on tribal mechanics, particularly since it places 'mechanical link' one level above 'non-tribal.' I don't disagree with the spectrum at all; I merely question whether going higher on it is a better form of tribal (and not whether it's more tribal, which I'd say it is).

Not unlike the spoiled Stromkirk Mentor.

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

CCDD 032216—Dwarven tribal through synergies not subtypes

Cool Card Design of the Day
3/22/2016 - I was reading Sam Stod's article about designing tribal for Shadows over Innistrad and thinking about how making a tribe work together through effects that name its subtype is so different from giving all those cards mechanical synergy. Without spelling it out for players, you're giving them a very intuitive archetype that will play well, but isn't chained to the subtype.

So I decided to grab an under-respresented tribe and try this new strategy out. Here follow 21 new cards.

Monday, March 21, 2016

Weekend Art Challenge Review 031816—aquasixio

Weekend Art Challenge Review
Hello artisans! Anastase here, with the review of this week's challenge!

I should probably have proposed more drawings for this challenge since the artwork of aquasixio is quite blue/green/red and sent people down parallel design paths. At the same time, green and red are the most apt at producing mana, so I guess it is not that ill-fitting of an art.

Quick reminder that I also included in the comments:
You are NOT obliged to design for that image. If you have a design and a creative commons illustration whose author we can credit, just design for that art, include the link to it and I will render that card with that art.
In this challenge I was hoping to see interactions between mana generation and things we have not yet seen like:
  • cards drawn since the beginning of the turn.
  • cards in hand.
  • an element of creature size/type that we have not seen yet.
However the cards you came up with are quite interesting and generated a lot of back and forth:

CCDD 032116—delve for artifacts

Cool Card Design of the Day
3/21/2016 - The nice thing about delve that isn't true of affinity, is that it can feel free but it isn't. You do have to spend your alternate resource, so instead of accelerating unhindered as affinity does, you have to keep fueling your graveyard if you want to delve more.

Today I explore a hybrid of the two mechanics.

Friday, March 18, 2016

Weekend Art Challenge 031816—aquasixio

Weekend Art Challenge
Hello Artisans! Anastase here with yet another challenge:

Design a card that generates mana in an unusual way!

Thursday, March 17, 2016

Weekend Art Challenge Review 031116—GaudiBuendia

Weekend Art Challenge Review
Hello all! Anastase here!

Last week I asked you to tackle this challenge. The discussion on the different cards has been outstanding, bringing up many rules issues with trying to solve the question at hand. I wish I had had more time this week to make a bigger introduction, presenting different ways R&D has tackled the issue over the year, but my non-MtG life has been hectic. You will find references to some of their solutions in my review of individual cards.

I had some thoughts about bidding life against a secret converted mana cost (or bidding mana against a secret mana cost) that I did not see on cards but otherwise I really liked what you came up with!

Let's get to the cards themselves:

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

CCDD 031616—Kird Pegasus & Mist Serpent

Cool Card Design of the Day
3/16/2016 - When I saw this art, my first instinct was a Pegasus Birds of Paradise. That wasn't interesting—or mono-green—so my next instinct was Pegasus Kird Ape. Adding {1} and flying to Kird Ape is still fairly strong. That felt too uninspired to share here, though, so I tweaked the mechanic to be more interactive. Take a look.

Monday, March 14, 2016

CCDD 031416—Toil

Cool Card Design of the Day
2/20/2016 - Toil is inspired by Clue tokens. Not nearly as versatile, but potentially worthwhile thanks to its own vector of relevance.

Friday, March 11, 2016

Weekend Art Challenge 031116—GaudiBuendia

Weekend Art Challenge
Hello Artisans. Are you feeling cunning today? I sure hope so.

Your challenge this week is one for which I have not found any elegant solution yet.

Thursday, March 10, 2016

Tesla Design Challenge 031016 — Filling in the Skeleton

Howdy all! We're nearing the weekend, and what better way to celebrate than with a Tesla design challenge? Over a the Multiverse site for Tesla, progress has been steady. We've been chipping away at the file, and now, let's make the final push to fill in the skeleton completely!

CCDD 031016—mulligan cycle

Cool Card Design of the Day
3/10/2016 - No time today to pretty up these designs. Made to alleviate the pain of mulliganing below six cards, some more directly/explicitly than others.

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

CCDD 030916—Demonic Connoisseur

Cool Card Design of the Day
3/9/2016 - The big problem with tutor effects is that players tend to get the same thing with them time and again, leading to repetitive gameplay. What if there were a tutor that could never get the same thing twice?

Monday, March 7, 2016

Weekend Art Challenge Review 030716—Anastase's Birthday

Weekend Art Challenge Review
Hello Artisans!
This week I asked you to design some cards for me, given my idiosyncrasies. I was hoping to print them out and show them to you in decks, but life got slightly in the way of my plans. Thank you for the cards you all designed for me. Here they are:

Friday, March 4, 2016

Weekend Art Challenge 030416—Anastase's Birthday

Weekend Art Challenge
Hello Artisans, Anastase here. This week is my birthday! So we are doing something strange:

Design a card for me.
Here are some tips on what I like:

I mainly play Commander and limited formats.
I love mill, +1/+1 counters matters and rules that totally change how an aspect of the game plays (Doran, Phenax, Silent Arbiter).
I love interaction. There is nothing worse to me than an opponent with whom I do not get to interact.
I like flavorful cards that give a new but on-color way to deal with problems each color has.
I love cards that make me reinterpret the card's image.
I dislike tutors.

I will judge the cards as though I did not know they were designed "for" me.

Thursday, March 3, 2016

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Weekend Art Challenge Review 022616—Conspiracy 2.0

Weekend Art Challenge Review
Welcome back, artisans to the review of this weekend's challenge. My name’s Zeno Rage a.k.a Walter Christy, and this week I asked everyone to do a little bit of theorizing on what’s going to be in the recently announced Conspiracy: Reign of Brago.

What’s that? Brago’s dead! Again! Sorry, my bad. I’ll just fix that.

Conspiracy: The Reign of Brago The Empty Throne.

What now! Someone took the throne? Good Urza, why can’t Wizards make up their minds? I swear, this is the last time I’ll change it.

Conspiracy: The Reign of Brago The Empty Throne Take the Crown.

With all of that confusion settled, let’s go over some of the things I’m looking for so we can get right into the cards. Anything that affects the draft, or is affected by being drafted, is one way to go. This could include conspiracies and the typical cogwork constructs. Second thing: cards that interact well in multiplayer. This could be done through the use of the mechanics from the original Conspiracy (Will of the council, Dethrone, Parley), or you could’ve come up with something original. Finally, I’ll be looking to see if the card is iterating on what the first set had done and expanding and exploring on those themes and ideas.

One last thing to take note of: all of the draft matters cards—much like lands, foils, rares, and double faced cards from Innistrad—have their own slot in the booster pack. This means that you won’t have multiple of them in a pact, and players will just have an extra (super fun and exciting) choice to choose from. Now, let’s get right into it!

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Spotlight Challenge 4—Czynski

This fortnight, Czynski is going to take lead on this challenge:

Design a cycle of each color's iconic creature—Angel, Sphinx, Demon, Dragon, and Hydra—for a specific plane. You may choose or invent a plane if you like, otherwise design for Tesla/Kaladesh. Also design a sixth card—a common or uncommon—that mentions one or more of these creature types in an organic way.