Official Phyrexian Arena Experiment!

I welcome you to the first Cardsmith vs. Cardsmith phyrexian arena contest. Where you will be rewarded not only on your smithing talent but also for defeating others!


The rules of this game are simple:

1. Two (or more) Cardsmiths will be paired against eachother.
2. Each Cardsmith must design a spell.
3. Those cards will (secretly) be sent to the judge ( @pepperoni ) via Personal Message.
4. The cards will be judged by the challenge's criteria.
5. The judge will then post both cards and one will be the winner.

So here goes your story:

You are a wizard and are trapped in this arena along other talented mages, your access to mana has been restricted, leylines have been diverted so no wizard may use mana from the plane unless otherwise allowed. You
are given some artifacts that can be sacrificed to produce mana, but they are not enough to break free from this hell.

The lights are turned on, you see another mage on the other side of the empty arena, you know what they want you to do... Only one can stand.

A screeching voice floods the room:
"You will only be given enough mana to destroy each other. NOW FIGHT!"

1. For this challenge you are given three (3) treasure tokens and two (2) scrap tokens (Scrap artifact tokens have "Tap, sacrifice this artifact: Add one colorless mana)
image image
1.1 You can sacrifice these artifacts to cast your spells, your spells must be able to be cast with your available mana.

2. You may save your artifacts for future fights.

3. If the result is a tie, you will fight again unless you both die, in that case, you both leave the competition.

4. Your cards must reflect the spells you would cast against your enemie(s). For example, I may create a shock to represent I use an electric attack on my opponent, and they create a Dawn Charm to represent a defensive spell.

5. The effectiveness of the spells will be judged by the following criteria:
5.1 Up to 5 points for BALANCING (Respecting power level of modern MTG design standards, for example, a functional reprint of Counterspell may only get 1 point out of 5 for being overpowered.)
5.2 Up to 4 points for FLAVOR (Effect-Art-Name-Text-Represented action relationship)
5.3 Up to 3 points for ORIGINALITY
5.4 Up to 2 points for CLARITY (How understandable the effect is)

The winner of the first fight will get TWO favorites at random from their creations and may continue to the next round.



  • @Mantis17 and @Bowler218 You are paired for the first fight, send me your spells via Personal Message. May the best Cardsmith survive!
  • *grabs popcorn*
  • *sips tea*
  • @Norzael

    *pours tea and coke in two tumblers, then periodically takes sips of both*
  • edited August 2019
    Here you go:
    (Feel free to use this instead of your example.)
  • @HeroKP Tea and Coke? I don't know how i feel about that....

    *watches is slight disgust*
  • edited August 2019
    @thephantomjoker Thank you, I hate that you can't put the tap symbol on tokens.
  • Yeah, I know. It's already time for it to be updated (as well as the planeswalkers).
  • edited August 2019
    *mixes Coke and Mentos Fanta*
  • Guys, seriously? You are arguing about mixing drinks in a PHYREXIAN ARENA?
  • edited August 2019
    As long as you buy at the official arena's store, drink and eat whatever the HELL you want.

    Now @Korandangels , @spookoops you guys are next in line, you can start to think about your spells. Try to keep it a secret, you don't want your opponent to have an edge on you.
  • @Pepperoni I didn't know that phyrexians had official arena stores... and I wrote a project about them for school.

    Also, question: If I spend all my mana, can I then make cards such as the Pact cycle?
  • @Tommia

    *secretly teleports some mentos into your bottle anyway*
  • *puts on rain coat*
  • *Accidentally pours glistening oil into all drinks*
  • edited August 2019
    Though unrelated to the very contest itself and not even asked for, here’s my character.

    Ytsix, Alchemic Artificer

    Gender: Male
    Age: ~206, biologically 25 and might be aging backwards
    Hometown: Hyperbase
    Race: Leonin
    Occupation: Artificer, Alchemist, Mage
    Biography: Ytsix was a young man that had a knack for magic. He had invented many different forms of mysterious devices (including an age-reversing machine and an alchemical superweapon that destroyed the lab he built it in [and the city it was in]), but he strives to invent something that had become impossible to make since the Mending; a device for planeswalking. Son to a planeswalker, he was upset when he found out he didn’t have a spark like his father. So, after 51 years, he had finally created a working prototype, and was so eager to test it that he forgot to check the planar trajectory. Activating it, it exploded, creating a rift in space-time that lead to Phyrexia. While no one on the Hyperbase knows where he went, they used his research and over 125 years of refining to create an operational, not-so explosive device.

    [card coming soon]
  • @TenebrisNemo

    Too bad I've isntalled a only-things-that-taste-good filter in both my tumblers!
  • “Huh. A bit of oil? Guess this’ll be coming home to the lab! We... do get to go home after this, right?”
  • edited August 2019
    @thephantomjoker interesting, I knew something like this would occur.

    In that case, your artifacts are spent at the beginning of your next fight, before you craft your spell, if you can't, you die and instantly lose. If you were at the finale, nothing happens.

    However, remember originality gains you points and the effectiveness of your spells isn't about the functional effects nor power level of the card, it Is about how well designed it is. For example, a common rarity shock could defeat a mythic rare mana drain.
  • @Pepperoni another question. When it comes to multiple spells, should we identify which spell we use first, second, etc.?

    Example: I make a {1}r burn spell and a {2}w defensive/healing spell.

    First I cast: {1}R

    Second: {2}W

    End example

    That way it would reflect us take simultaneous "actions" like an rpg normally would? Or is it solely based on cards as a whole cast at one? Or do you kind of make a story out of the cards yourself to make a battle scene play out to the winner?
  • @Norzael for this first round you may only cast one spell per fight/untie. Later on I will play with the rules and maybe you'll be able to cast more than one spell. I will explain how does that work then.

    But for now, yes, I will narrate how does the battle happen based on the points and effects of the spells.
  • @Pepperoni ahh okay. Gotcha.
  • This whole thign remind me of the tournament of champions! *flashbacks to the hot mess that was Jahanacicus*
  • edited August 2019
    *During pause in fighting, summons imps to steal all the drinks*

    Also, I entered my card and strategy. Early?

    Can we also cast real magic spells as well or instead of one's custom cards? This is in case I survive the first round, which is unlikely.

    I think that my contestant (Who is a manticore by the way) will become a ghost when he dies, get all the other dead contestants to join him, and destroy the arena and maybe the winner.
  • Right, remind the Phyrexians to call an exorcist before this is over.
  • I don't think most exorcists would join the phyrexians.
  • edited August 2019
    Just so you have an idea of what the battles will look like let's take a look at the stage next to us...

    A young female Vedalken and a hooded figure face each other on the stage next to us, dancing in circles as they wait to release their spells.

    The Vedalken gathers power from four of her artifacts and charges a vortex of white and blue mana around herself. The hooded figure only watches as the vedalken struggles with her ambicious spell.

    (Her spell was overpowered, plus she didn't crédit the artist and broke the color pie a little so I took 2 points from her xd)

    The hooded figure uses a lightning whip against the girl's feet to make her lose balance. Her spell fizzles and falls on her right knee.

    As soon as she lost control of her mana, the hooded mage runs towards her and uses another lightning whip. As the speed reveals an old woman's laughing face, the fingers advance twice as fast and shoot a sound-barrier-breaking lightning whip that goes straight to the vedalken's throat. The lightning's velocity and heat snap the neck faster than what the girl was able to react, and falls dead on the ground.

    The crowd cheers as the old woman puts her hood back and leaves to fight another round.

    (She made a cheap, cool and well balanced spell, not flashy but her expertise translated into a precise display of abilities in battle)
  • @Pepperoni You wrote good instead of hood

    Important question: Can we use spells to generate mana??? As with land search, Treasure creation, directly adding mana, etc?
  • edited August 2019
    @thephantomjoker Land search wouldn't do anything, we aren't actually playing magic, we are representing battles with magic cards.

    However, you could create trasures and cast mana rituals. But it would be space consuming in this first round, you can only cast one spell this fight.
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