Saturday, June 26, 2021

Weekend Design Challenge 062621 - Dungeon

Hey Artisans! Click through to see this weekend's design challenge. Your mission is to design a custom Magic card that follows the guidelines. Over the course of the weekend, give feedback to your fellow designers on their designs and incorporate their feedback to iterate on your own. I'll try to offer some feedback of my own starting on Monday.

This week's challenge is simple: design a dungeon. Bonus points for showing how dungeon design space can be preserved (or increased) even though any dungeon can show up in any deck.

Good luck and have fun!


  1. Dungeons are TOUGH to design. One aspect I think can be further explored is the use of rooms with negative effects that act as "costs" for whatever comes next.

    The old-schoolers out there might recognize this one. The final effect is pretty flashy, but based on what I saw so far, getting to the end of a dungeon seems to take a while.

    Firetop Mountain
    (1 - Orc Barracks) Put a +1/+1 counter on target creature.
    (2a - Halls of the Elements) You gain 2 life.
    (2b - Iron Cyclops' Room) Create a Treasure token.
    (3 - Ferryman's River) Sacrifice an artifact.
    (4a - Minotaur Pit) Create a 2/3 Minotaur creature token.
    (4b - Maze Master's Room) Create two Clue tokens.
    (5 - Dragon's Den) Lose 5 life.
    (6 - Zagor's Study) You may play spells this turn without paying for their mana costs.

    Hopefully the numbers make it clear enough.

    1. I agree with your intuition about dungeons-- they're most fun and flavorful when some of the rooms are downsides. Balancing that is tricky, though. Reading between the lines of the dungeons that saw print, I figure they tried printing drawback dungeons and didn't like how they played very much. "Venture into the dungeon" already suffers from being somewhat parasitic. Having to do it many times just to come out ahead would be a tall order. Yes, it's nice to have the fast route through Tomb of Annihilation to max out your "complete a dungeon" effects, but most of the time it's significantly worse than just hanging out in one of the other dungeons.

      Firetop Mountain mostly seems like it would work well within these constraints. The only change I'd suggest is a more consistent reward on 6 to make the steep drawback of 5 worth it.