Rezatta — VISION DESIGN PHASE

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  • @TezzeretofCarmot21
    They release the results of one challenge each Tuesday and Thursday ^^
  • GDS3 LESSONS FOR REZATTA

    Hey! ^^

    You probably know the Great Designer Search 3 is happening right now, and if you don't you should really check the first judging articles because they're a gold mine of information for custom designers:
    1) JUDGING THE DESIGN TESTS
    2) DESIGN CHALLENGE 1: YOU MIGHT AS WELL TRIBAL
    3) DESIGN CHALLENGE 2 : A CIRCUS ACT
    3) DESIGN CHALLENGE 3 : FINDING A GOOD MECHANIC

    The contestants are doing exactly what we're doing here, i.e. trying to reproduce Magic designs and push the boundaries of the game, except they get professional feedback on it. There's an invaluable amount of information in those articles but they are quite long with ten-ish cards for each of the eight participants. So I figures I would select some of the best pieces that could be interesting to remember for the design of Rezatta.

    I'll be looking for three types of submissions:
    - Designs that would fit the themes of Rezatta
    - Designs that fell into interesting design traps
    - Designs that try to push the rules limit

    Let's start this series with the first article. As no one was eliminated yet, there are A LOT of cards so I'm only going to cover the first four candidates in alphabetical order in this post. Here are some lessons I could take from this first challenge:
  • Challenge 0: MULTICOLOR GRID (PART 1)

    For this challenge, the contestants had to design 10 cards following those rules:

    1) All the cards will be two-color and each of the ten two-color combinations (listed below) need to be represented.
    2) Each of the following five card types (creature, enchantment, instant, planeswalker and sorcery) needs to be represented twice, and never on the same color.
    3) Each rarity (common, uncommon, rare, and mythic rare) must be represented on at least two cards.

    ALEX WERNER

    • Design 2
    Naila and Hrun, Fused (mythic rare)
    2GGWW
    Planeswalker — Naila-and-Hrun

    Mark Rosewater commented:
    I like the idea of a planeswalker that's a pair of Planeswalkers working together, but then you just revert them to being two different planeswalker cards. You tap into a cool concept and then abandon exploring it.


    Why I selected this card:
    We should always be on the look-out for cool twists on Planeswalker cards, and having one card representing two planeswalkers is something we could easily consider.


    • Design 3
    Swiftblade Pikeman (common)
    RW
    Creature — Human Soldier
    3/1
    CARDNAME enters the battlefield with a blade counter on it.
    Remove a blade counter from CARDNAME: CARDNAME gains first strike until end of turn.

    Erik Lauer commented:
    This is an interesting design. However, it puts a lot of tension on your opponent. This is more challenging than we would want from most commons.


    Melissa DeTora commented:
    One thing to be careful about with commons is how often they lead to gotcha moments. This creature sits there as an on-board trick and with no mana in the activation cost it can be easy to forget this is there. For cards like this, I would avoid first strike and go with abilities where you can't win combat for free, like trample.


    Why I selected this card:
    I think that's an interesting design trap: make sure the commons with first strike don't lock the game. We should check for that.


    ARI NIEH

    • Design 1
    Steamfist Enforcer (common)
    3(b/r)
    Creature — Human Rogue
    3/2
    Menace
    If mana from an artifact source was spent to cast CARDNAME, it enters the battlefield with a +1/+1 counter and is an artifact in addition to its other types.

    Why I selected this card:
    The card received mixed reviews because it hinted at an artifact set which was against the rules, but for us it is a cool bit of information about the possibility of making cards that care about being paid "with psylian life".


    • Design 3
    Rahmi, Master Engineer (mythic rare)
    3RW
    Planeswalker — Rahmi
    4
    Whenever an artifact is put into your graveyard from the battlefield, put a loyalty counter on CARDNAME.

    Ethan Fleischer commented:
    Putting a triggered ability on a planeswalker is a natural place to go if you're looking for novelty, and triggers such as this tend to work well on build-around rewards.


    Why I selected this card:
    Again on the planeswalker twists, almost all candidates proposed a planeswalker with a static ability and that was very well-received. Definitely something to consider.


    • Design 4
    Mugai Creation Saga (mythic rare)
    5GGUU
    Sorcery
    Do both of these, in either order -
    * Draw a card for each creature you control.
    * Create a 2/2 green Bear creature token for each card in your hand.

    Eli Shiffrin commented:
    This breaks a couple rules about modal spells, but hey, rules were made to be broken! Wait, that's not what I'm supposed to say, is it? This design is a wonderful example of something that the rules specifically forbid (spells always do their things in the printed order) but only because there's not an exception that we need to point out. You stretched your design and found an exception; that's easy to write rules for.


    Why I selected this card:
    A cool design that pushes the rules boundaries and that got the approval of the Rules Manager, making it something we could use ourselves.


    CHRIS MOONEY

    • Design 3
    One-Shot Saboteur (common)
    UB
    Creature — Human Rogue
    1/3
    When CARDNAME enters the battlefield, look at the bottom two cards of your library, then exile one face down.
    When CARDNAME deals combat damage to a player, put the exiled card into your hand.

    Erik Lauer commented:
    This is a fine design, except I would stick to the top two cards of your library, especially on a common.


    Melissa DeTora commented:
    I dislike looking at the bottom two cards because it uses more dexterity and is just more time consuming that looking at the top.


    Ethan Fleischer commented:
    I too don't really understand why we're mucking around with the bottom of the library here, but I could imagine an environment with a lot of scrying or something might want to do this.


    Mark Rosewater commented:
    I agree with the other judges that there's not a strong reason to look at the bottom of your library.


    Why I selected this card:
    The judges unanimously disliked bottom of the library manipulation for the sake of novelty as the contestant was doing it, but we should also note some nuances in Ethan Flesicher's comment: in an environment with Discover that basically scries a lot there could be room for it.


    JAY TREAT

    • Design 7
    Bucket List (rare)
    1UR
    Enchantment
    Whenever you cast a spell of a type showing on CARDNAME, put a counter over that type and draw a card. If all five types on CARDNAME have counters over them, sacrifice it and draw one more card.
    [ ] artifact [ ] creature [ ] enchantment [ ] instant [ ] sorcery

    Eli Shiffrin commented:
    I'm positive that I can write rules to make this design work, but seeing it pop up out of nowhere made my brain do a somersault. It would require extensive rules work and terminology definition, and then there's even more issues I'm aware of downstream: graphic design concerns, digital tracking and display concerns, and tournament play concerns. I hope you've got more than one card cooked up to use this design space for the amount of work it'd need, but I'm impressed and intrigued.


    Why I selected this card:
    This pushes the boundaries of the rules and the jurees were pretty excited by it. That said, it's not something we can really do on MTGCardsmith unless we put the frame modifications directly inside the illustration box.

    ____________

    That's all for today! I'll finish the last four candidates another time so it's not too long to read =)
  • Wait! @ningyonk are you asking us to submit card designs in the same manner as these fellows have done?
  • @Scott_Anderson
    Not at all! x) I just thought some of the designs they made (and more particularly some of the feedback they received) were interesting for Rezatta itself ^^ It's just a selection of especially helpful moments from the GDS3, nothing more =)
  • I've been enjoying that series as well.
  • SO, I love Rezatta so I'm gonna keep pitching at it. First off, Psylian life makes me want to play the set mechanically. I don't like how wordy Discover is but I'd draft it if I had to. The token mechanic is a token mechanic and that's not my play style but I think it's a good red token mechanic. I don't think Rebirth should turn you into an angel or legendary. You can have specific cards that gain those boosts for those stories. The color grid is bueno I think. I'm down to design some throwaway commons if I don't have to find art for them so we can play test a draft. I like the idea of a bizzare planeswalker. I think the art you had for the silent planeswalkers is gorgeous. So here's a toss up idea:

    CARDNAME
    2RW
    4
    W:Target opponent reveals an unrevealed card in their hand until the next end step.
    +2 If you have a card exiled facedown with CARDNAME, reveal all cards revealed with CARDNAME and cast them without paying their mana cost. Otherwise, exile the top card of your library facedown.
    0 Name a card. Players cannot cast spells with the same name as the named card until your next upkeep.
  • Hey! I'm still on this but with two GDS3 articles to read each week (plus the Magic Story in-between each round) it's a lot to take in so my activity is going to be more focused on week-ends until GDS3 is over ^^

    @brcien
    Is the first ability a loyalty ability that requires you to pay W to activate or is it a regular activated ability like in the following example? (It's a personal try at the GDS3 Trial 3 challenge with an activated ability that's not a loyalty ablity, it's not ready yet so don't mind the rest of the card):

    image


    I like that you tried to find ways to express she is communicating through things like naming and revealing cards (I especially like revealing cards to depict mute communication.) The last ability is also quite flavourful with a mute planeswalker for me ("Players can't cast spells" cards are often Silence-flavoured so it's an especially good white fit.) Still the whole package lacks cohesiveness I think. I'm especially puzzled but the activated ability, couldn't the third ability just make the opponent reveal their hand?
  • First: The GDS3 is awesome. I intend to major in game design and the GDS3 is major-ly inspiring!

    Second: We could take lessons from the Tribal challenge for making Tribal work in Rezatta.
  • that card is cool!
  • @ningyounk
    Hey so on page one you said psylian life was w/b but then created an entire cycle of for it. So is w/b just the color that uses it the most if so then shouldn't the cards that use psylian life be uncommons or rares like the examples you showed because sets are usually defined by its commons?
  • I meant it as a repeatable nonloyalty ability. Mira's minus is so busted though. Can planeswalkers tap? I think changing a rule like that would have some pretty big consequences (tanglewire superfriends?). I think a mana ability works fine, especially with the two mana helping mechanics in Rezatta.
  • @HenryTheHatter
    After re-reading all the Nuts & Bolts articles during the break a couple months ago, I realized that we were really encouraged to let the mechanics tell us in which colours they wanted to go by playtesting them and keeping the most fun elements. So I figured that instead of deciding a priori in which colours each mechanic should go, it could be interesting to test each mechanic in each colour then cut them off from the colours that played the least interestingly. That's why I tried to make a common cycle of cards for each mechanic. Here, let me emphasize that they're part of a special first batch of commons which role is to playtest every aspects of the mechanics and not make an actual balanced set of commons.

    That said, psylian life bein life gain, it kind of have to be restrained to the life gain colours which are white, green and black. But this little experiment can give us a hint at the potential for blue and red bending, most likely at uncommon and/or rare like you mentionned =)

    @brcien
    Okay, I like the idea of using an activated/triggered/static ability on a planeswalker. It's something that was proposed multiple times during GDS and WOTC said they were completely ok with it and will do it eventually, they were just trying to burn through planeswalker design space as slow as they could because it's not that big. My only issue is that we only have access to three-abilities planeswalker frames on MTGCardsmith which means the special ability will have to take the spot of a loyalty ability, so the two remaining loyalty abilities'd better be really exciting ones ^^

    And yes, you can tap planeswalkers, but not with Tangle Wire since it specifically asks for an artifact, creature or land. They also don't have summoning sickness, like artifacts.

    image image
  • Maybe the nonloyalty ability could be the ultimate spot instead of the plue spot? I like the idea. Do we need it in this set??? I think Eco, the planeswalker you flashed in the creative thread, has the OH I WANT THAT CARD art and would fit the mute character we wanted, so thinking of planeswalkers I would keep that in mind. Planeswalkers also build archetypes around them, like Teferi making Azorious control a thing in standard right now, so thinking of how a planeswalker affects a typical standard could help determine where we could push them and where we don't need to. It also helps in sealed if they synergize with the main mechanics of the set. A lot goes into a memorable, effective planeswalker.
  • edited June 1
    @ningyounk
    Felt like making cards so I made you half of an Uncommon cycle hope you enjoy.
    I'll make the rest tomorrow probably, also the way you described r/ b in the archtype guide really made me think of exploit fingers crossed it fits.

    image

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  • Ahhh I finally understand psylian life.

    Maybe it should be betokened somehow, like Exerted or Khans//Dragons was marked with little tokens.
  • edited June 1
    @brcien
    About planeswalkers, Mark Rosewater often mentions that they do the planeswalkers very late in design because, as you mentioned, they are tailored by the needs of the whole set. It's fine to brainstorm some ideas earlier though ^^

    @HenryTheHatter
    That's a pretty cool set of cards ^^ Note that the archetype grid in the intro is just a random example. As I was saying above, the current plan is to playtest the mechanics in all colours to define where they feel best, then fill the holes. So the archetypes may end up completely different.
    You can't use any keyword in any set, all evergreen mechanics and three-ish additional set mechanics is about the maximum number of mechanics a modern Magic set uses because of complexity (and to avoid having every set feeling the same.) This means Exploit can't be used as-is, but you can still use the non-keyworded version: "When CARDNAME enters the battlefield, you may sacrifice a creature. If you do, EFFECT" ^^

    @Scott_Anderson
    Do you mean having a reminder card? Like Morph, Monarch, or City's Blessing?

    image image


    If so, you'll find the reminder card of Psylian life in the intro ;)

    image


    We could make a "put your psylian life counter here" zone though, like Energy or Poison counters reminder cards, maybe?

    image image

  • @ningyounk I was referring to the second kind of card, but both could be important.
  • I'm finishing the second part of my GDS3 lessons that I started last week, next I'll jump directly to challenge 3 because two candidates proposed life-matters mechanics that are especially important to us ^^

    ____________________________________________

    Challenge 0: MULTICOLOR GRID (PART 2)


    JEREMY GEIST

    • Design 1
    Pick Your Poison (rare)
    3BG
    Sorcery
    Choose any number of modes that add to exactly <4> You may choose the same mode more than once.
    <1> Put a +1/+1 counter on target creature.
    <2> Create a 1/1 black Snake creature token with deathtouch.
    <4> All creatures get -2/-2 until end of turn.

    Eli Shiffrin commented:
    The rules to support this don't seem too bad, but it's definitely some work. Don't forget two important facts: Modes happen in the printed order, and targets are chosen before any of the actions are done. If a card's design looks strongly like it's asking you to break those rules, you'll be fighting your players, and no one wins there.


    Why I selected this card:
    This is another design that is doing something that hasn't been done before and basically got approval from the rules manager if we want to try something like it.

    • Design 5
    Sign In Someone Else's Blood (common)
    BR
    Instant
    Sign In Someone Else's Blood deals 3 damage to target creature you control.
    Draw two cards.

    Ethan Fleischer commented:
    This is only really an additional cost if the creature you target has 3 or less toughness. I'm pretty skeptical of this card's color pie appropriateness. Also, player's frequently use cheap card draw spells to help them out of mana screw; this card can't do that very well.


    Why I selected this card:
    An example of potential life-matters card, and in this specific case one that was not generally well-received, so probably something we should try to avoid in our own designs.


    LINUS ULYSSES HAMILTON

    • Design 5
    Ashiok, Dream Collector (mythic rare)
    4UB
    Planeswalker — Ashiok
    5
    -9: You get an emblem with You may cast nonland cards on the battlefield you don't control.

    Eli Shiffrin commented:
    Casting things off the battlefield is theoretically possible, but it causes no small amount of weirdness. What if the other player want to activate its ability in response? Priority fights aren't fun. What if it's face-down? I can move it to the stack, look at it, and then determine whether or not I can or want to cast it. Perhaps you can get to the same goals by having the emblem let you pay a permanent's mana cost to exile it and cast it for free, or even having it simply gain control of a one by paying its mana cost.


    Ethan Fleischer commented:
    The ultimate is bizarre; casting cards from the battlefield is bound to confuse a lot of players.


    Why I selected this card:
    I talked about this before but casting things from the battlefield was once considered for the Rebirth mechanic. Two lessons here: it is technically possible, and it's not encouraged unless you have an excellent reason to not just blink the card.

    • Design 7
    Graveyard Dig (common)
    1(b/g)
    Sorcery
    Return up to two target {green or black} creature cards from your graveyard to your hand.
    You may cast this spell for 2(b/g)(b/g). If you do, ignore the braced text.

    Eli Shiffrin commented:
    "Change this spell's text by removing 'some words here'" isn't something we've done, but it's pretty reasonable within the rules.


    Why I selected this card:
    Another tool that was considered at the very beginning of Rezatta Design, if anyone remembers the time of ability counters and do-it-yourself tokens in-between other oddities. I thought it was interesting to notice the approval from the rules manager here, if we're ever interested in digging this back.

    • Design 8
    Borrow (rare)
    UR
    Sorcery
    You may activate an activated ability of target artifact or creature you don't control without paying its costs. (If it has {X} in its cost, X is 0.)

    Eli Shiffrin commented:
    I'm more concerned with all the other costs besides X that can be problematic when you skip them. Costs of "Sacrifice a creature" can do weird things when the effect tracks back to the sacrificed creature—and even weirder things if the effect affects "that card" but that card is still on the battlefield. Will players get that the T cost is waived, so tapped permanents can be re-activated? If my opponent has a planeswalker, I can activate its ultimate ability right away with Liquimetal Coating. I'm confident I can make answers that won't cause the game to collapse into a singularity, but I'm not confident the answers will be user-friendly.


    Mark Rosewater commented:
    I'm torn. The player in me thinks this is a cool effect that would lead to a lot of fun moments. The designer in me agrees with Eli that this effect is going to cause some non-intuitive gameplay. If this card were submitted to my set, I would play around with variants to find the sweet spot between cool and understandable.


    Why I selected this card:
    Another design with an ability we sometimes see on MTGCardsmith from time to time. I'm not sure what the final lesson is, it's certainly not encouraged because of priority battles, but Mark Rosewater seems to think there are ways to do this in more specific situations. That's just food for thoughts.
  • edited June 3
    RYAN SIEGEL-STECHLER

    • Design 1
    Swallow Whole (uncommon)
    BG
    Instant
    Exile target creature if its toughness is less than the greatest toughness among creatures you control. You gain life equal to the difference.

    Why I selected this card:
    I thought that last line of text was cute and could be considered in a life-matters set :)

    • Design 3
    Indiscriminate Slaughter (rare)
    2BR
    Sorcery
    Choose a creature at random. Destroy all other creatures.

    Erik Lauer commented:
    This is a fun but familiar design, but probably not for Standard tournament play. I would charge more mana.


    Why I selected this card:
    The lesson here has nothing to do with the card itself! x) This card was actually printed as-is a few weeks later in Battlebond under the name Last One Standing... except the real version costs 1 less than the contestant's version where Erik Lauer suggested it to cost *more* ^^ He probably knew about it, which is why he made the "Standard tournament play" precision, but this also means we should always look at the bigger picture when reading the judges advice :)

    • Design 5
    Heart's Desire (mythic rare)
    3GGUU
    Enchantment
    If you would search your library for a card or cards, search for twice as many cards that fit the search criteria instead.

    Eli Shiffrin commented:
    Some cards like Cultivate that refer to a singular "the other" can easily enough be brushed off as affecting "the others," which is a power level issue rather than rules. Protean Hulk boggles in confusion, though—two sets with total converted mana cost 6, or one? I'd aim the text simpler to get straight to the point and only mention the bits you care about:
    While searching your library for one or more cards, you may search for up to twice that many cards.


    Why I selected this card:
    Just another random cool design trying to break some rules that could be Mythic rare material if needed after it basically got the rules manager tweaking and approval.

    • Design 6
    Kaya, Kingslayer (mythic rare)
    WB
    Legendary Planeswalker — Kaya
    1
    -6: You get an emblem with Creatures can't attack Kaya planeswalkers you control.

    Mark Rosewater commented:
    Your ultimate should help you win, not prevent you from losing.


    Why I selected this card:
    A really important design lesson from Mark Rosewater that I saw multiple times during the contest. Planeswalkers are hard to design and making designs that slow down the game instead of bringing it to an end is an easy trap to fall into.

    • Design 7
    Cranky Hydra (rare)
    XRG
    Creature — Hydra
    1/1
    When Cranky Hydra enters the battlefield, choose X. You may choose the same mode more than once —
    * Put a +1/+1 counter on Cranky Hydra.
    * Cranky Hydra deals 1 damage to target player.
    * Destroy target artifact or enchantment.

    Ethan Fleischer commented:
    This card is pretty sweet. I don't know if each of the modes is sufficiently balanced against each other, but the essence of the design (X Hydra with Confluence text) looks like it will make a cool, flexible, appealing rare card, or maybe even a mythic rare!


    Why I selected this card:
    Choose X: Yet another new cool effect brought to us by the Trial 3 challenge x)

    • Design 10
    Curse of Apprehension (uncommon)
    1RW
    Enchantment — Aura Curse
    Enchant player
    Creatures enchanted player controls can't attack or block alone.

    Erik Lauer commented:
    This is novel, but what worries me that it is a lock-out component, so I would likely charge more mana. That sounds innocuous, but is clearly a step toward replacing the card.


    Mark Rosewater commented:
    My gut is to punish the cursed player for not doing what the spell restricts rather than prevent it from happening. This helps with Erik's lockout issue.


    Why I selected this card:
    That may be a cool way of showing fear in our set, once we take the judges advice into consideration.


    SCOTT WILSON

    • Design 1
    Easily Excitea-Bull (rare)
    2RW
    Creature — Beast
    2/2
    Haste, lifelink
    Whenever a player's life total changes, put a +1/+1 counter on CARDNAME.

    Eli Shiffrin commented:
    Will players easily understand how many times this ability triggers if two attacking creatures with lifelink deal damage? If a player is dealt 2 damage at the same time their own source with lifelink deals 2 damage? Will there be a consensus on what the answer is and/or should be? Those don't kill the card, but they're red flags.


    Mark Rosewater commented:
    I'm a fan of this card. To deal with some of Eli's issues, I'd contemplate making the card a little more expensive, moving it up to mythic rare, and granting a +1/+1 counter per life gained as that's clearer how many counters you get.


    Why I selected this card:
    A definitely interesting design in life-matters territory that we could consider for our set.

    • Design 4
    Blessed Fists (common)
    GW
    Sorcery
    Target creature you control gains lifelink until end of turn. It fights target creature an opponent controls.

    Why I selected this card:
    Again, a simple design that could make a lot of sense in a life-matters set.
  • GDS3 LESSONS FOR REZATTA

    Hello everyone! =)

    While the winner has been announced and the last article will be released next week, I figured I'd dig for some more lessons from the judges' feedback that could be applied to Rezatta by looking at another challenge.

    This will be much different from Trial 3 because participants are not showing off crazy ideas anymore. This means I won't even talk about all the participants. Basically, it's going to be two parts:

    1) Some general insights in designing mechanics with a bit of every participant.
    2) More detailed feedback for the mechanics of Jay Treat and Jeremy Geist that are life-matters mechanics.

    I won't be putting each card details because I selected feedback on how to make mechanics work in general. To make things smoother, I added between square brackets some contextual information on the card that is being discussed when needed.

    Challenge 3: FINDING A GOOD MECHANIC (PART 1)

    ARI NIEH

    Revered N (As CARDNAME enters the battlefield, you may tap up to N other untapped creatures you control. CARDNAME enters the battlefield with a number of +1/+1 counters equal to the number of creatures tapped in this way.)

    Melissa DeTora commented on Design 1:
    When making mechanics that require a choice, it's important to make the choices equal.


    Jules Robin commented on Design 1:
    My suspicion is that you'd already usually rather revere when you have the option, so combining it with more abilities that scale up with revering is going to widen the gap.


    Summary of the Judges feedback:
    Ari made a pretty huge mistake we must keep in mind though I don't think any of our current mechanics is concerned for now. His mechanic is an alternate casting cost but has no tension, it is virtually always better to rever when you can. He needed to have the revered creatures get downsides to compensate the additional power/toughness, but did the opposite instead.


    RYAN SIEGEL-STECHLER

    Rhythm N (If this is the Nth spell you cast this turn, it is cast in rhythm.)

    Jules Robin commented on Design 1:
    Putting rhythm on cards that are very good to cast on curve [= 3/3 for 2G] leads to some pretty high-tension decisions. There are some Spikey players who enjoy that, but many don't, so be wary of doing a lot of these.


    Mark Rosewater commented on Design 3:
    I'm going to side with your playtesters and not Melissa and Jules. I like rhythm 1. I think it creates a low bar challenge that will make may players feel happy. It's important to remember that you need some simple puzzles for players to solve.


    Summary of the Judges feedback:
    Some interesting in-depths advice on the role of a mechanic in the set. We want to reward players for playing the mechanic, and be careful with commons that give hard choices to players. Note that some of them is still fine, we just got sets with Cycling and Kicker in Standard ^^


    SCOTT WILSON

    Ancestry {COST} (You may pay {COST} and exile this card from your graveyard as the ancestor of target creature you control. Add this card's power and toughness to its descendant's. Ancestry only as a sorcery.)

    Eli Shiffrin commented in the Overall Feedback:
    The one piece of rules-related feedback I have here is to make sure to use a happy little colon in the reminder text so your playtesters can tell it's an activated ability right away, and they don't have to ask you if it uses the stack, etcetera.


    Why I selected this comment:
    I figured I'd highlight this specific comment because we have an activated mechanic in Rezatta for now: Rebirth. We have put the "happy little colon" in the reminder text already, but if we ever try to remove it, we should always remember this piece of feedback ^^
  • edited June 14
    image

    This art looked really cool and a bit like Eco. Also, super strong emotion so had to make a card. Enchantments are my favorite cards to design, though this one seems weird to me.
  • edited June 13
    @brcien
    It is indeed the same artist that did "Eco"! That's why I originally proposed this silver-haired character as the main character, this artist painted her in many different situations which could help us convey a story on the cards, by having the same character doing different things on multiple cards.

    I haven't seen this artwork yet though, it's gorgeous ^^ Did you find it on their Deviantart portfolio??

    EDIT:
    Ok, that artwork is their latest, it came out 3 days ago which is why I had not seen it yet x)
    For those interested, you can see how much raw material we could take from that artist's gallery if we decided to have this character be a main character: https://wlop.deviantart.com/gallery/
  • @brcien,
    Great concept!
    I just wanted to mention that since we have Rebirth (+1/+1 counters), we should avoid entirely including -1/-1 counters in the set.
  • Are we still doing separate story and design threads?
  • @brcien
    Yeap! It was just slowed down by the very condensed GDS we just got but once we've digested everything it will go back to normal. Actually we've gone past page 10, it may be a good time to decide how the GDS3 lessons will affect the design of Rezatta then start a fresh thread to execute those changes ^^
  • edited June 16
    Challenge 3: FINDING A GOOD MECHANIC (PART 2)

    In this post, I review one of the most important moments of GDS3 for Rezatta. As they were asked to design a custom mechanic, both Chris Mooney and Jeremy Geist proposed a very similar life-matters mechanic... and got ranked last and second-to-last xD Let's see what happened:

    CHRIS MOONEY

    If you spilled blood this turn (You spill blood whenever a player loses 3 or more life.)
    Spill your own blood (To spill your own blood, lose 3 life.)

    Mark Rosewater commented on Design 1:
    Melissa is correct that black only gets life when you drain something or in conjunction with sacrificing something.


    Jules Robin commentedon Design 2:
    Life payments appeal to a pretty narrow and Spikey group of players, so I'm skeptical that this space would ultimately prove worth all the complexity it adds to learning the mechanic.


    Mark Rosewater commented on Design 2:
    One of my pet peeves is mechanics that work differently on different cards. You spilling your own blood is different than blood being spilled (the first is active and the second is passive—that is, the first allows you to activate it while the second requires for something else to have happened). This is going to cause confusion.


    Mark Rosewater commented on Design 5:
    Again, you gave an ability you really want to gain before combat damage [= Double Strike] based on something that will most often trigger after combat damage.


    Eli Shiffrin commented in the Overall Feedback:
    Players reacted poorly to the "two meanings" implementation of haunt, and I'd bet they'll have the same issue here.


    What lessons can we take from this entry?
    Chris got eliminated after this round, so his life-matters mechanic didn't exactly convinced the jury. He did quite a few mistakes that are going to be important to avoid ourselves:

    1) The main reason he got eliminated after this was that his mechanic was doing too many things under the same name in a very confusing way (it looked if you lost 3 or more life this turn, allowed you to pay 3 life, made your opponent lose 3 life, and looked whenever you lost 3 life or more.) I think this basically settles the discussion on potentially having all the life-matters triggers united behind a same ability word xD

    2) Most players don't like paying life. It's ok in small doses but we have to make sure no one HAS to do that if they choose to play Black for instance. Maybe the life-matters triggers needs to be unified into something that allows you to create life swings the way you like, at least at common.


    Jeremy Geist

    Bloodied — If you lost life this turn, EFFECT.

    Erik Lauer commented on Design 1:
    [Bloodied] does not have a wide enough appeal for a Standard set. For a common, it is too challenging to get the reward. In practice, I would adjust your mechanic. So, for the rest of this assignment, I am changing your mechanic to "if any player lost life this turn."


    Jules Robin commented on Design 1:
    The vast majority of Magic players are not interested in hurting themselves.


    Mark Rosewater commented on Design 1:
    I do like that you included reminder text as I agree that many players might not realize that damage causes life loss.


    Melissa DeTora commented on Design 2:
    A+B mechanics are very hard to draft, and are not satisfying if you aren't able to get your A or B cards. Since sometimes you aren't able to get your synergy, these cards have to have reasonable rates on their own (see madness from Shadows over Innistrad—fine if you don't madness them, huge cost reduction/reward if you do).


    Mark Rosewater commented on Design 3:
    Now we get to bloodied cards that can be cast on your opponent's turn. While this version has more natural synergy, it suffers from a different problem: it discourages the opponent from attacking. Normally we like our conditions to be things that promote the game ending.


    Jules Robin commented in the Overall Feedback:
    I'd immediately discard bloodied if somebody submitted it as a mechanic idea for a set I was leading (or change it into something like Jay's submission). The mechanic has very narrow appeal and forces you to put more cards with that same narrow appeal into a set to support it. Its interaction with fetch lands makes it easy to create Modern cards, but whatever shots we took in that space wouldn't justify the other asks on the set compared to just making a few designs with the text, perhaps as an un-keyworded Limited theme for a single color pair. Serving this audience is necessary, but we need to find ways to do it such that other players can also enjoy it. There are just too many non-Spikes to build the structural elements of our sets from things they won't like.


    What lessons can we take from this entry?
    Not a great week for life-matters mechanic as this was considered the worst performance of Jeremy by a wide margin. There were, once again, some very important design lessons for Rezatta:

    1) Once again, it's pointed out that caring about losing life is too narrow and won't appeal to many players. Our set doesn't revolve entirely around losing life, but maybe it's better to have the cards just care about life swings and let you decide how you want to create those life swings.

    2) Caring about gaining/losing life create an A/B problem that's very difficult to design for. Jeremy did the mistake of not showing how he would enable life loss on your turn, while we have Psylian Life that both gains you life and allows you to pay life whenever you like. That said, we may once again want to consider mixing those triggers with something more natural for the game — caring about the opponent losing life — so those cards don't get stuck in your hand if you don't have the right enablers.

    3) One of the biggest traps that we were already aware of but it's good to see Jeremy remind us here: "if you lost life this turn" cards must never discourage your opponent from attacking.
  • @ningyounk
    Your designs are far better than those two’s submissions. Those were surprisingly poor ideas out of them.
  • Can we reprint fetches?
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