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Post  Zuty on Fri Apr 30, 2010 10:49 am

Been reading a lot of articles on game design, watching videos from Magic set designers, and I went to a seminar on game design and all of this has really been motivating me to continue with my set and push me to keep writing the story I have for the set. But I would like feedback on some of the ideas I have, first starting with this idea I had the other day.

I was looking at lands the other day and I came across the Alliance land cycle where the land comes in, you sac a basic land and get a land that taps for mana and do an effect. Lake of the Dead, Balduvian Trading Post, and Kjeldoran Outpost to name a few. All of which are on the reserved list and I really don't know why. I think it might just be that they are costed so cheap and on a free to drop card.

Let's look at Kjeldoran Outpost and Vitu-Ghazi, the City-Tree.

Outpost you need to sac an untapped plains, it taps for W, and for 1W,T you get a 1/1 Soldier.
City-Tree taps for 1 and for 2WG, T you get a 1/1 Saproling.

What about Balduvian Trading Post and Valakut, the Molten Pinnacle.

Trading Post comes in and you sac an untapped mountain, taps for 1R, and for 1 you ping an attacking creature.
Valakut turns your mountains into Lightning Bolts, but you need to drop a mountain (or at least have it enter the battlefield) and it taps for R.

So I can see how over the years cards have improved and increased in power and I think cards will only continue to get powerful while still not crossing the line into OP/Broken territory. But balancing a land seems to be the most difficult of any other card type in MTG. Lands are free to play and they are in everyones deck; be it the world champions deck or a new players deck. Players have and use lands. And I know Zen was a land heavy block and because of the success of Zen I can safely assume we will see another land focused block or a return to Zen.

These lands are not in either of my custom sets; they are more of a way for me to improve my balance with cards. So these are very very very rough drafts of cards and I would really like some feedback on them.

https://2img.net/h/i64.photobucket.com/albums/h170/bowsermaster12/AngelsField.jpg?t=1272636145
https://2img.net/h/i64.photobucket.com/albums/h170/bowsermaster12/ShockyMountain.jpg?t=1272636141
https://2img.net/h/i64.photobucket.com/albums/h170/bowsermaster12/NourishingForest.jpg?t=1272636142
https://2img.net/h/i64.photobucket.com/albums/h170/bowsermaster12/LooterIsland.jpg?t=1272636142
https://2img.net/h/i64.photobucket.com/albums/h170/bowsermaster12/IckySwamp.jpg?t=1272636148

Post anything that could be improved, do you like it? do you hate it? should I change one thing? is it perfect? should I start from scratch? Any help will do. Thanks.

~Zuty
Zuty
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Posts : 689
Join date : 2010-03-01

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Post  MidniteEffort on Fri Apr 30, 2010 1:11 pm

Tyler Durden wrote:WHOA! WHOA! WHOA! ok, you are now firing a gun at your imaginary friend near 400 GALLONS OF NITROGLYCERINE!

way too powerful, buddy. you covered the early game restrictions, but once the black or red ones get online, what can your opponent do? uhhhhh not to mention the blue one which is unprintable. forever. then the white and green ones suck. don't forget how powerful Kjeldoran Outpost was in its day. by modern standards, it wouldn't be printed. also, barring Scapeshift shenanigans, Valakut takes until at least the seventh turn to go online, and that's most likely in a mono-red deck. sacrificing your second turn for a two-mana producing land is fine IF it only produces mana (in fact, it's behind the curve looking at all Karoo lands as they bounce), but these abilities are too widespread in power level to really gel. they remind me A LOT of the not very cohesive Outpost cycle.

compare to Cursed Scroll and Despotic Scepter for appropriate mana ratios here. and even Cursed Scroll is kind of conditional. maybe increase the activation cost.

frankly i don't see why the two formats should be combined. make one cycle like Vitu-Ghazi, and one set of mono-Karoos. seems like you're trying to do too much with one cycle.

lands are really hard to design. dial these down a bit.

_________________
contort yourself!

Steve.
MidniteEffort
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Age : 35
Location : Oyster Bay, NY

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Post  Zuty on Fri Apr 30, 2010 2:11 pm

Not trying to make it mirror the cycle, I just needed a place to start off from.

Gonna do several different changes.
-----

Shocky Mountain comes into play tapped and does not untap during your untap step.
Tap an untapped mountain you control: Untap Shocky Mountain.
T: Add 1R to your mana pool.
R, T: Deal 2 damage to target creature.

-----

Shocky Mountain enters the battlefield tapped.
When Shocky Mountain enters the battlefield, sacrifice it unless you return an untapped Mountain you control to its owner’s hand.
T: Add 1R to your mana pool.
T, Sacrifice Shocky Mountain: Deal 2 damage to target creature or player.

-----

Shocky Mountain comes into play tapped.
When Shocky Mountain enters the battlefield, sacrifice two untapped Mountains or sacrifice Shocky Mountain.
T: Add RR to your mana pool.
R, T: Deal 2 damage to target creature.

-----

Shocky Mountain enters the battlefield tapped.
When Shocky Mountain enters the battlefield, deal 2 damage to target creature you control and target creature an opponent controls.
1, T: Add RR to your mana pool.

------

So the first one is kind of like those big creatures that don't untap unless you pay a cost to untap it and instead of RR is just 1R. Shock effect is still there.

The second one is like Karoo, but you can T and sac it to Shock something. You do lose a land out of sacing it and I know Ken Nagle was not a fan of the land that came into play and you could sac it to Shock something, not because it was OP, but because it made you lose a land and now you were behind unless you went out of your way to do something to drop additional lands. Not to fun sounding, slowed the game down, and put you at a large disadvantage.

The third one ... I don't think there is anything that does this. The idea is that you sac two mountains to compress it into one land that taps for the same mana you would get from the two mountains. It also Shocks, but at a higher cost.

The last one is kind of a last addition I tossed in. It hits the field and Shocks a creature you own and a creature you don't control, you don't lose lands by dropping this, and it acts like a doubling filter. For 1 you get RR. So it's a one time Shock that hits two targets and it's a filter that turns 1 into RR.

Just tossing ideas out there to try and balance this. Right now I have a Tainted land cycle in Pandora that I really like. It's a cycle I wish had gone to all colors rather then just Black, but since Torment was so heavy on Black spells I can understand.

It's basically:

{T}: Add {1} to your mana pool.
{T}: Add {COLOR} or {DIFFERENT COLOR} to your mana pool. Activate this ability only if you control a BASIC LAND TYPE OF THE FIRST COLOR.

So:

Hidden Oasis
T: Add 1 to your mana pool.
T: Add U or G to your mana pool. Activate this ability only if you control an Island.

Volcanic Spring
T: Add 1 to your mana pool.
T: Add U or R to your mana pool. Activate this ability only if you control an Island.

Just let me know what you think about both of these land cycles. Just trying to improve on my balancing skills in a game before I go ahead and make my own card game.

~Zuty
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