Elesh Norn, the Augmentor

I've created an alternate version of Elesh Norn and I'm planning on following up with the other four praetors in the next few weeks. Most of the feedback I receive is from my uncle, but I wanted to see what else there is to fix. All feedback is much appreciated.


  • First off, phyrexian mana is a dangerous game to be playing when it comes to cardsmithing. This thing pumps itself and everything else you have for a double anthem, drains your opponent as a questionable mana sink, and can do some serious burn work, all for literally any deck that can produce six mana. That's terrifying.
  • @Lujikul Would it be better if I changed two of the Phyrexian mana in her base cost to normal white mana?
  • It is my personal belief that that would be much better, but you may want to get second opinions from people much more skilled than I am when it comes to cardsmithing.
  • Alright. I should also make her second mana ability restrict attacks rather than blocks...
  • Tap ability on a big creature feels counter-inuitive, since you want to do everything else with a big creature than tapping it for pretty much irrelevant effect.

    Also usage of phyrexian mana really isnt good for inexperienced people, since it is a thing that even wotc messed up with, since phyrexian mana is made in a fashion that disregards colorpie, which is pretty important thing considering the balance of the cards.

    The second ability also probably needs something like "activate this ability only during your turn and only once per turn" or maybe it could be twice, but it being repeatable like that just makes it that it can straight up turn your life into a resource, which can give a huge advantage to decks focused on purely lifegain.

    You really have chosen yourself an interesting mission, but maybe leaving the usage of phyrexian mana to the minimum in your future praetors would be fine since it really is a hard mechanic to balance. I hope I dont lower your morale with my critique, but I wouldnt spend my time commenting on your card if it didnt atleast have some potential in it
  • @Glasseschan
    Thank you for the feedback! I've been thinking about a few fixes to the problems you mentioned in your response.

    For example, I've been considering changing two of the Phyrexian mana to normal white mana, just to make the cost less avoidable, I've been thinking about changing the first ability to a ww mana cost without tapping, and I've thought of a few changes to the second ability to make it fit more with white while simultaneously making it less broken.

    The second ability easily needs the most reworks, so I've been thinking of changing the mana cost to 2wwt. This will keep the ability from being stacked eight times in one turn while still keeping its effectiveness. Because this is a white ability and not a red one, I should probably change the text from 'can't block' to 'can't attack.' I was also talking with my uncle about changing the price to attack from 1 life to 2 generic mana or 1 life, basically an inverted Phyrexian mana.

    Do you think that these changes make the card more balanced, or is there more work to be done in order to fix it?
  • @NokiSkaur I suggest avoiding the usage of phyrexian mana in the mana cost of the card alltogether, so you can make a card with stable cmc, which results to a design that fits the mana cost. I would suggest something like 5ww and I dont think splitting up between phyrexian mana and normal mana is visually good, so maybe avoid that.

    Yeah the first ability ww without tapping feels good and balanced.

    And now, I probably start sounding like a somebody who hates phyrexian mana, but really, I would be perfectly fine with the second ability if you only changed the phyrexian mana to normal mana. The stacking of that ability would be fine, since that is your finisher, and if you can activate it 10 times with mana, you are at a point where you should win. I dont like that with the current version, your life total is turned into resource for the spammable ability. These are my suggestions if you want to change the card into a card without phyrexian mana, but I do understand if you want to try out designs with phyrexian mana, since it is pretty interesting with the way it is innately broken.

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