Saturday, April 27, 2013

Daily Card Redesign #116: Recover

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. 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.


This was awesome. I learned that Barrin had a daughter who he had a falling out with when he forbade her from her interest in artifice, based on his experiences with Urza. He later finds that she had since died at the hands of Phyrexia. Overcome with grief, he recovers her body and aimed to bury her next to her mother in Tolaria. That's when he found Phyrexia had infiltrated that place, too. So he cast a spell he swore he would never cast. It was this:

Anyway, so since the art of Recover features Barrin recovering his daughter's body, I'd be hard-pressed to find any other kind of effect that would match the art and story other than returning a card from the graveyard back to the hand. I thought of exiling the card from the graveyard, but it turns out that Cremate already exists in Invasion!

So, I pursued to go after a variant of this staple black effect that hasn't already been done before. There's multiple design variations, but I thought of a flavorful restriction. Since Barrin didn't find his daughter until after she had already died, the player can't return a creature that had just died that turn. Otherwise, it'd be like Barrin was there to see his daughter die and immediately got her body back. It was after the fact. Thus, the restriction is to only return creatures that hadn't died that turn (not technically worded that way since creatures on the battlefield are different objects from creature cards in the graveyard).

Now, since this is a drawback, and the normal cost for this effect is one black in the form of Disentomb, I needed to add an upside to this card. Drawing a card has already been done on the previous submission, so I wanted to pursue something else to differentiate this new design enough from the original. The cleanest upside I found was making this an instant. There's barely any spells with this effect that are instants, so this was perfect!

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