I considered several possibilities for what to write about here- what words of wisdom I could bring back to the design community that gave me the skills to work in R&D. Ultimately, I decided the most interesting thing I can offer is not any advice (19 Ways To Get Your Commons In Shape For Set Design Handoff- #6 Will *Shock* You!) but questions. Hard questions. Questions that I don't know the answer to.
- What can be done to reduce the number of "non-games" in Magic?
- What templating advancements could make cards easier to understand or open up new design space?
- To what extent should the color pie be format-agnostic? Should any allowances be made for formats with different needs?
- How should the increased popularity of Commander impact our choice of premier set themes?
- What can design do to make Magic more appealing to new or underserved audiences?
- How weak should the weakest cards be? We don't make cards like Mindless Null anymore- should we?
- What currently nonexistent way of playing paper Magic would be most beneficial to create?
- What design convention are we still following because it's always been that way, not because it's actually good for the game?
I hope these spur some interesting discussion! I'm curious to hear your perspectives on them.
[You may be wondering, "Why is Ari writing for Goblin Artisans again?" I've decided to move on from Wizards of the Coast. I enjoyed my time in R&D immensely, and am proud of many things I accomplished there. Starting next week, I'll be working for Blizzard on Hearthstone Battlegrounds.]