Friday, January 18, 2013

Daily Card Redesign #18: Festival of the Guildpact

Daily Card Redesign is a daily Magic: The Gathering design exercise where I randomly choose a card for the scenario of it being killed late during its own set's development, and I design a replacement card that uses the same art, is the same color, is the same rarity, and has a name that, alphabetically, keeps it within the same collector number for the set.

That's a lot of happy people. O_O

This is unusual for the things we usually see focused upon in Ravnica. Usually, there's strife, death, and magical duelings. As such, there are few things that would make sense as what's depicted in the art. So that I don't create something that's totally weird, I'm going to keep this card named "Festival of the Guildpact." It IS the Festival, but I have to execute upon these festivities differently.

I see that the flavor text mentions that just one day out of the year people stop fighting. This means that whatever effect I design will have to last just one turn. No permanent cards unless those permanents only last one turn. But this is a white card, not a red card , so we're definitely not making a permanent. This will be an instant or sorcery.

If everyone stops fighting for a day, then I'd say that the original execution of this card doesn't quiet capture that. In the actual gameplay, what ends up happening is that there is hostility by the opponent, and you react and extinguish that hostility to some degree. You may not even get rid of it all and still receive damage. Nay, if you're going to stop everyone from fighting, let's do it right.

The first thing I thought of was to do a Fog / Holy Day effect. But Chant of Vitu-Ghazi already does this mass prevention of damage. Also, even if it didn't exist, it still wouldn't be entirely correct to do this! That's because the gameplay leads to there being an attack by creatures in the first place! Then you respond by preventing all the damage. No way. This has to be premeditated happiness. There has to be no attacking in the first place! ...We have to skip the combat phase!

In fact, what we want our creatures to be doing is almost exactly what the people in Moment of Silence are doing:

The creatures have stopped fighting for just a moment. There's no combat for a period of time, and they just sit there. They sit there. Ah, that's the difference between these folks and what the people during the Festival of the Guildpact are doing. The Ravnicans are celebrating and drinking wine! And it's the latter that I want to portray.

Since the creatures are untapped and won't be attacking, I'm going to give each creature a tap ability. The "drinking of wine" will be reflected by giving them:

T: You gain 1 life.

Because I'm giving it to every creature, both the opponent's creatures and your creatures would gain this ability. Two things:
  • It may seem like a terrible effect to grant to your opponent's creatures, but if you and your opponent are relatively stalemated, your opponent may not be so inclined to tap his or her creatures only for you to attack for the win next turn.
  • The effect gets better the more creatures you have. It's a good thing that white is the "army" color, and this should be beneficial for you, anyway; especially with the Selesnya Conclave.
Keep in mind that because I'm giving a benefit to both sides, the bonus is balanced by a drawback, the mana cost of this spell remains the same as Moment of Silence. But then because you'll probably be gaining some more life than your opponent because of him or her not wanting to tap his or her blockers for when you take your next turn, I'll increase a point in the mana cost.

There! New card:

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