Thursday, September 30, 2010

Day 1: Unterior Decorating


If you haven't already heard The Great Designer Search 2 has begun! If you're interested in Magic design period, and you haven't yet read the introductory article by Mark Rosewater, then GET GOING MAN. 

Stop reading this right now and read that. 

In fact, I will forgive you if you get all caught up in what results from reading that and completely forget (or purposefully ignore) about reading this blog post. For sure, man.

Actually, you might say that anyone who's interested in GDS2 shouldn't be wasting their time reading something like this when they could be spending their time creating and viewing content for world/block designs. Well, I'd like to think that somebody could argue that reading this isn't a waste of time (Off topic: I notice that I don't usually make definitive statements about things that somebody else could have a different opinion on.). There's content in this blog post after all, and there are card designs below that could spark somebody's imagination into generating ideas they didn't have before.

If you still managed to read this and know what I'm talking about in terms of Great Designer Search 2, I thank you so much for your valuable time. Time is VERY valuable now. However, here's something relevant: My world/block page. It was mentioned on this wiki page. Also, I'm part of the Team Color Pie design team for this competition, which has a world/block page belonging to none other than MTG Color Pie.

Anyway, for those that know what I was up for a majority of these posts, I was completing challenges from the last Great Designer Search, and I stopped short of the Un-cards. I will not be continuing any further in my practicing since I'll be focusing on doing things that are actually for GDS2. For now, that's creating my world/block. 

However, I did mostly create four out of five cards. The existing four cards aren't completely complete, however. Just the concept and the text in the text box. The rest of the card is also very important for Un-cards (art and representation of the card), which is why these cards aren't technically complete. Here, I'll show what progress was done:

The art is supposed to depict very gentlemanly and ladylike players dressed in formal wear doing a musical-chairs sort of thing. I think the sophistication in times of silliness is funny, but it could be terrible. I'm no comedian. 

Anyway, the card is tricky in that you'd have to time the death of a player while that player is under the control of another player (i.e. not your seat). 

The last sentence solves the problem where, in a multiplayer game, the player removes all the cards they own from the game, normally. However, since a player can be controlled by someone else, and that player loses instead of the player that would normally lose, that would have meant you'd take your cards under the control of another player, and that person would be out of cards. Unless I forced either the player to get up out of his or her set to replace the losing player or to stay where they are and the cards all move toward him or her. Neither solution was desirable, so that's why that sentence is there.

For all those players that bemoan the existence of Baneslayer Angel. This mostly mirrors Baneslayer Angel, but I figured I didn't have to exactly antagonize it. I just needed enough to be able to do the job: completely answer her in many fun ways. Originally, I had the requirement to put Angelslayer Elemental onto the battlfeild be to yell out, "I will avenge you Serra Angel!", but I didn't want to have more than one card that involved yelling out. Speaking of which, that leads into my next card:

All right, I did a lot of research for this one. There's all sorts of references in here related to MaGo. Actually, too many of it focus on his many names, but whatever. It's all about him! And, no, I'm not some Cult of MaGo fanboy. I just thought it'd be refreshing to do a card design of him instead of the expected gravitation toward designing a card of Mark Rosewater (making fun of one of the people that are the "faces of Magic").
  • The name "Mark Gottlieb, Ph. D." refers to his Doctor Wombat name on Magic: The Gathering Online and follows the same format as "Richard Garfield Ph. D."
  • Since MaGo is MaRo's archnemesis, I put the mana cost using the colors that what I think a MaRo card wouldn't use. MaRo would be a blue/red (representing creativity). However, I'm not being fair to Gottlieb. He even stated in his last article that all his articles in his House of Cards column have been about being creative. So, I would put him in red/blue at least, as well, if I weren't forcing him to be in the role of being defined by being the archenemy of someone else. Also, I justified the mana cost with the abilities in its textbox. May or not be "stretching it".
  • The "supervillain" thing is a fun class to put instead of "designer" since during his time as Rules Manager implied that he could be evil and bend the rules of Magic toward his bidding.
  • "Agrajag!" is his Starcraft name.
  • He has an affinity with Rabid Wombat. I'm not sure if it's his favorite card ever or not (I can't spend too much time trying to find the source that confirms this.), but he definitely likes this card specifically. It's also the only Wombat (besides changeling cards and Mistform Ultimus), so he's specifically look for this card until the day Wizards prints more Wombats. ...And I'm sure he wouldn't mind being able to search for those new guys. He is also called Wombat for his puzzle masters thing or whatever (Such apathy! If you're reading this, MaGo, I could say I'm sorry, but the apathy also permeates how I care about your feelings. ...Joke. It's a joke. Don't be sad.)
  • The second part of that search ability helps a Rabid Wombat if you already have one.
  • The final part is the coolest part. "Mago" appears on Spanish cards who have "Mage" in the title in the English equivalent. For example, "Meddling Mage" in Spanish is "Mago entrometido". And, in Italian and Portuguese, the creature type "Wizard" is "Mago". You can read about it in MaGo's article about his discovery of this fact here. In fact, this also cites the source of all other MaGo name references on this card.
  • The second ability hoses all Maro cards, except for the weird Molimo, Maro-Sorcerer. And yes, how I did that second ability is a risk in that there could be Cults of Maros appearing in all sorts of places, which would defeat the purpose of hosing. Though, it's fun to think that there'd be one legitimate one out there. But, whatever. I'm not going to spend too much time trying to decide whether "0" or "number of Cult of Maros" is the correct decision. ...Oh, wondering what the Cult of Maro thing is? It references the Cult of Mago that sprung up in Wizards' forums after his last article. Here, read this wiki from MTG Salvation (Yeah, that's pretty much where you'd get all the information
  • He played upon the "Rules Manager" title with "Rules Man(ager)" in this article.
  • There's no specialness for the 3/3 bit.
I never did figure out what to put in the art besides Mark Rosewater somewhere in it.

This was the last card I was trying to complete (in terms of gameplay). I obviously never finished (I planned to make fun of Jace, The Mind Sculptor by having five abilities a'la Greater Morphling.). I incorporated black's power thing (money = power) with some green abilities to justify green-ness (I saw that there wasn't enough green representation in my cards). The ultimate ability involves counting the total US cent value of the counters on this planeswalker for some effect. Obviously, I still needed to figure out how I would control it going out of hand (stating certain coins can only be counted, restricting all abilities to only deal with coins with a value less than 25 cents, dividing the total by a large number, and whatever other options) because there are dollar coins in existence that would be adding 100 to the total per coin if used.

Go, go card house building! I like the tension of trying to outspeed your opponent while still carefully building a card house. I tried to state the rules text for a card house in a way so that people don't cheese their way through this challenge. Is this card still costed too little for the amount of cards you could potentially draw? I don't want it to cost too high so that players can play this more often. I tried to offset this with more mana symbols and reasoning that a gambling red part gives the chance of nothing, so the cost is lower.

I want the art to show the tortoise and the hare building card houses. The tortoise's house is clearly stable, yet underdeveloped, and the hare's looks almost done, yet, just about to fall over.

So, that's that. Erm, what else? Hmm... Oh! Yes. OxyFrog in the comments of my last blog post pointed out that my Shapeshifter lord doesn't actually work the way it does since Shapeshifters lose their Shapeshifter type when they're copied as another creature. I forgot this fact, which is no bueno. Thanks for helping me see that, OxyFrog!



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