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  • posted a message on [Monthly Card Contest] ***MCC*** Discussion Thread
    April finals critiques here. Sorry I went a bit over deadline.
    Posted in: Custom Card Contests and Games
  • posted a message on April MCC Round 4 (Finals) - "Revenge of the Nephilim"
    Design (9/10):
    Creativity: Not only are both of the effects on this card pretty unique, but having the mirroring effects of two color pairs is also new.
    Elegance: I really like the idea of the two color pairs mirroring each other, and it makes the card seem really cool. I get that each of the keywords represent a different color pair, but I'm not completely sold on them being there for a card that already has a lot going on.
    Potential: It slices, it dices, it kills things, and it recurs from the graveyard. Everything anyone could want in a card.

    Development (6/10):
    Viability: It's very impressive that you managed to make a card that really makes sense as a four color card. The green part of the G/W ability is a bit of a stretch (green returns any card, while black returns specifically creatures), but it's not too bad, especially for this type of card. Obviously mythic is correct.
    Balance: I think everything is just a bit too efficient. A 3/6 with vigilance and haste for 4 mana (although a very difficult 4 mana to obtain) is already very good, and adding the abilities for what is a pretty cheap mana cost (1BR for an edict that makes an opponent lose life is a good spell on it's own, not to mention when it's recurrable) is a bit much. I think the stats need to be worse and the abilities need to be 1 or 2 mana more expensive.
    Creative Writing: The name fits the card abilities well and the flavor text is very appropriate, so well done here.

    Polish:
    Challenge (2/2): Good.
    Quality (3/3): Seems good.

    Total: 20/25
    Design (9/10):
    Creativity: That is certainly a unique ability to be putting on a card. It's kind of like a Hedonist's Trove for your own cards, but even that's a bit of a stretch for a comparison.
    Elegance: The ability reads pretty cleanly, which is nice for an effect this unique. Nothing really wrong here.
    Potential: The uniqueness of the effect probably makes it worth trying to build around, so there's definitely appeal.

    Development (4.5/10):
    Viability: As is the issue with most 4 color cards, there isn't really a reason for this to be 4 colors. There's nothing that really jumps out at me as "this definitely isn't red". The colors are hard to pin down, but this card doesn't need to be this many colors.
    Balance: The combo with Time Warp is a bit too clunky to be broken, so this should be look at more as a value card, in which case it still may be a bit to good. Essentially adding "Buyback 2" to every card that hits the graveyard is pretty potent, and this card doesn't even come with the downside of a weak body. Probably needs to be a 3/3 and have a the ability cost 3 or 4.
    Creative Writing: Name and flavor text are both very good. No issues here.

    Polish:
    Challenge (2/2): Good.
    Quality (3/3): Good.

    Total: 18.5/25
    Design (8.5/10):
    Creativity: Unique way to use the cost reduction variant. Having the counter mechanic care about color is pretty interesting too.
    Elegance: The abilities on this are cool and interesting, and the whole "caring about colors" thing really resonates with this card. The abilities are a little tough to get your head around, but not too bad.
    Potential: This has the same type of appeal that Animar, Soul of Elements has in that you can do all sorts of wacky things with it, so there's definitely potential.

    Development (4.5/10):
    Viability: This should be 5-color. There's no reason this card should exclude black when it cares about all colors being on the field.
    Balance: I think this creature is way too big when this card already has a powerful ability on it. A 6/6 trample for 4 is huge. One that gets bigger and also makes all your spells cost less is just too much.
    Creative Writing: Muraganda makes sense for flavor text, considering it's parallel to Feeding Grounds. Name is good for the card.

    Polish:
    Challenge (2/2): Good.
    Quality (3/3): I would have phrased the name and flavor text different personally, but none of it actually seems wrong.

    Total: 18/25
    Design (5.5/10):
    Creativity: Nothing too crazy here, second ability feels very Aetherling-like.
    Elegance: I'll address this here other than quality - other than the fact that you say "sacrificed card" instead of the cards name, it doesn't seem particularly wrong. However, it comes across as super clunky and just reads better if you the wording on Aetherling instead.
    Potential: I see some Timmy use since it is a really big flyer, may some Spike use for the second ability.

    Development (3/10):
    Viability: I think if you cut out the black this would be perfect. It feels very Jeskai to me.
    Balance: This seems way too good as a 4 mana play. It's better than your typical dragon, not to mention it can protect itself from removal. Probably would be better as a 4/4.
    Creative Writing: Lich and Jeskai just don't mix for me. Maybe if there was some flavor text I could get a better sense of what is going on.

    Polish:
    Challenge (2/2): Good.
    Quality (2.5/3): Keyword order should be "Flying, first strike, haste"

    Total: 13/25

    admirableadmiral: 20/25
    IcariiFA: 18.5/25
    Ninja Caterpie: 18/25
    PsyOp: 13/25
    Posted in: Monthly Contests Archive
  • posted a message on MCC May Round 1 — "From the Ashes"
    Hordechief's Call 1RW
    Instant (U)
    Put three 1/1 white Warrior creature tokens onto the battlefield.
    Raid - Sacrifice those creatures at the beginning of the next upkeep unless you attacked with a creature this turn.
    "An ambush must be swift and brutal, but most important, it must leave no survivors."
    -Zurgo, khan of the Mardu
    Posted in: Monthly Contests Archive
  • posted a message on April MCC Round 3 - "A clan reborn"
    Design (6.5/10):
    Creativity: Lure effects are usually done as activated abilities, so that's a bit of a twist. Nothing else is too crazy.
    Elegance: The design itself is very clean and simple. They attack, you have a good blocker for it. That mana cost sticks out like sore thumb. It would have been cleaner to just have the cost be 1UWR.
    Potential: I don't see tons of potential for this card, though I imagine it will appeal to Spike who want to get the most out of this as possible.

    Development (8.5/10):
    Viability: While the mana cost is a bit of a mess, it is pretty appropriate given the abilities on the card. Pretty sure rare is correct for this, especially since this messes up combat a lot.
    Balance: I like the power level that this card is at. Obviously this is a house for something like limited, but even in constructed it is very good at playing defense and can make combat a nightmare for your opponent. It clearly doesn't do anything too busted, but it does enough interesting things to probably make it playable.
    Creative Writing: The flavor text comes across as a bit more serious than I would like given the general flavoring of the card (the Kaisham being tricksters and all that). The name fits pretty well with the card, and the flavor text is OK on it's own, but they don't really come together.

    Polish:
    Challenge (2/2): Good.
    Quality (2.5/3): Should be "At the beginning of combat on each opponent's turn, ..."

    Total: 19.5/25
    Design (7/10):
    Creativity: Soul Warden + Deathgreeter. Nothing crazy, but an interesting combination.
    Elegance: Card is very clean and simple, and I can a creature caring about both life and death, so this works. One small issue I have is that it should probably be "Whenever another creature ..." for clarity.
    Potential: If there is a use for Soul Warden, there is a use for this, so I could see some people wanting this.

    Development (8.5/10):
    Viability: While this would be perfectly fine as WB, these effect should up in green enough that this being Abzan is fine. Plus it plays nicely with the flavor of the clan.
    Balance: I really like the power level of this card, especially for an uncommon. Obviously it's good in limited, as all 3 mana 3/3's are, since it's ability makes up for it's difficult mana cost. However, even in constructed I could see this being good against aggressive decks since it's body is relevant in combat and gives you incidental life gain. Very good.
    Creative Writing: I wish the name were a bit more evocative, but it isn't too bad. The flavor text is good but I feel like it should be quoted by someone.

    Polish:
    Challenge (2/2): Good.
    Quality (3/3): Good.

    Total: 20.5/25

    Design (7/10):
    Creativity: Neither ability is completely original (pump and tutoring), but both do have their own unique twist on it.
    Elegance: This feels more like a collection of abilities on a card rather than a cohesive idea for a design. They all fit the Naya theme pretty nicely (aside from the fact that this has first strike cuz), but nothing really goes together.
    Potential: TIMMMMMMMMY!!!

    Development (3/10):
    Viability: I'm not the biggest fan of hybrid mixed with normal costs, but it's not too egregious here. I'm not entirely convinced that this couldn't be mythic, since it does some pretty crazy stuff.
    Balance: One ability is busted for limited, the other is busted for constructed. The +5/+5 pump is way too good on an early drop, and essentially makes attacking and blocking with this thing on the field impossible (it's already pretty difficult since this is a 3/2 with first strike). The second ability is way too cheap and easy to just go plop an Emrakul, the Aeons Torn onto the battlefield.
    Creative Writing: Name sounds a bit silly, though it does convey what the card does fairly well. The lack of flavor text hurts (I know there's no room for it, but still), since the flavor doesn't come through the design particularly well.

    Polish:
    Challenge (2/2): Good.
    Quality (2.5/3): The "afterwards" is unnecessary.

    Total: 14.5/25
    Design (5/10):
    Creativity: I mean...it's kind of just Sublime Archangel with vigilance, right?
    Elegance: The card is very clean and simple, especially compared to Sublime Archangel, which comes across as a bit more clunky. It also fits the Bant shard very well.
    Potential: People like Sublime Archangel, so...

    Development (6.5/10):
    Viability: Though this could be mono-white (like Sublime Archangel), the fact that this round is based on shards makes Bant acceptable. Could be mythic, but rare is fine.
    Balance: Sublime Archangel didn't break anything, and this is more expensive and more difficult to cast for not as much upside. This wouldn't do much in constructed, and would of course be a house in limited.
    Creative Writing: Name is good if a bit generic, but the flavor text is a home run.

    Polish:
    Challenge (2/2): Good.
    Quality (2.5/3): Needs "until end of turn" at the end.

    Total: 16/25

    FortuitousEntity: 19.5/25
    PsyOp: 20.5/25

    L0ng5h0t: 14.5/25
    Ninja Caterpie: 16/25
    Posted in: Monthly Contests Archive
  • posted a message on April MCC Round 2 - "Dragons of Ravnica"
    Scores are final

    Design (8/10):
    Creativity: Sort of an exploit reverse Exhume, I guess? It's a pretty unique ability having each player get a creature from the other's graveyard.
    Elegance: I like the idea of having a dead creature exchange. The idea behind the card is pretty interesting. That wording is pretty sloppy though. While there's no real ambiguity in it, it is a bit difficult to wrap your head around.
    Potential: I can see quite a few people wanting to find a use for this guy. Timmy can reanimate big creatures, Johnny might look for creatures with downsides to Donate, and it's still an interesting card for Spike.

    Development (8/10):
    Viability: At first it's difficult to see the blue in this, but I think it's justifiable since your essential reanimating two creatures then pulling the old Switcharoo. I still think mono black is justifiable, but I don't think blue black is completely wrong (or wrong at all, for that matter).
    Balance: As with all exploit cards, the body and effect should be looked at separately first. As a 3/4 for 4 it's not particularly exciting, but OK. The exploit effect really depends on what's in the graveyard. It's tough to control what your opponent might have, but I could see this being used to give away some cards with heavy drawbacks (Leveler, e.g.). Overall, the combo potential would be a bit of a concern, but overall this seems acceptable and could be a really fun card.
    Creative Writing: The lack of flavor text is upsetting, but the name is very fitting for what the card does.

    Polish:
    Challenge (2/2): Good.
    Quality (3/3): I'm not convinced that the wording for this is completely correct, but I can't find a good reference, and nothing about the wording seems completely wrong.

    Total: 21/25
    Design (8.5/10):
    Creativity: "When this creature dies, Slagstorm." The modal effect on a death trigger is new, unless you count Orzhov Pontiff (which I don't).
    Elegance: Everything here feels really clean. The design is simple, but leads to some cool choices. Just adding a body to the effect makes it quite a bit more interesting.
    Potential: This seems pretty Spike to me. Obviously this is a house in aggro decks, but having the ability to wipe the board when it dies seems pretty interesting.

    Development (8.5/10):
    Viability: Should be rare. This is not something I would want to see a couple copies of floating around every draft pod, not to mention cards with wrath effects feel like they should be rare.
    Balance: It feels good without it being too good. It has a lot of flexibility in that if you need to be aggressive it can be aggressive and if you need to play defense it can play defense. However, it is hampered by the fact that it does nothing when it comes down. Probably right where I would want this to be in terms of power level.
    Creative Writing: Very good Rakdos flavor text. Name sounds a bit silly, but fits the card nicely.

    Polish:
    Challenge (2/2): Good.
    Quality (3/3): Good.

    Total: 22/25
    Design (6/10):
    Creativity: Pretty nice twist on the haunt mechanic, though nothing else on the card seems particularly crazy.
    Elegance: Like the majority of cards with haunt on them, this card seems a bit clunky. The haunting ability is poorly worded, since there are different creatures being referred to by "it" and the whole thing itself is quite a bit wordy. On the other hand, I do like the gameplay potential of this card, as having a kind of split card effect when the creature dies is pretty cool.
    Potential: This feels like a Spike card, since it opens up a lot of decisions over what to do with it. I don't see much Timmy or Johnny appeal here.

    Development (7/10):
    Viability: Black/white seems fine for this card, though I'm not sure this couldn't just be mono black. Both deathtouch and lifelink are black abilities, though granting them both tends to be black and white (outside of the recent Deadly Wanderings). Uncommon seems good.
    Balance: The seems pretty powerful in limited and pretty underwhelming everywhere else. In limited, deathtouch is very powerful, and giving the ability to give it to another creature or downsize an opponents creature on the way out is exceptional. Everywhere else, a 2/1 for 4 just ain't cutting it, especially when it's abilities don't impact the board.
    Creative Writing: Flavor text is just OK, though the Orzhov flavor comes through strong. "Eliminator" sounds a bit silly in the name.

    Polish:
    Challenge (2/2): Good.
    Quality (2.5/3): A few spelling/punctuation errors ("n" missing in "haunting", period missing in reminder text, comma missing after "Otherwise").

    Total: 17.5/25

    Doomfish: 21/25
    IcariiFA: 22/25

    Vertain: 17.5/25
    Posted in: Monthly Contests Archive
  • posted a message on [Monthly Card Contest] ***MCC*** Discussion Thread
    Judgings done. Scores are here.
    Posted in: Custom Card Contests and Games
  • posted a message on April MCC Round 1 - "The first step"
    Judgment is final.

    Design (7/10):
    Creativity: Yea, this card is really something else. As in not anything like any other card.
    Elegance: This is definitely one of the harder cards to wrap your head around. I imagine this would be difficult for most new players to completely understand what's going on with this card. Another issue is that the 0/0 looks pretty unappealing on the card, though this is a minor aesthetic nitpick.
    Potential: You hear that? It's the sound of Johnny salivating over this card.

    Development (8/10):
    Viability: Let's start with color. Obviously black is the card that cares about creatures in the graveyard. However, white is the color that most cares about permanents, while the transforming into creatures appears all over the place (mostly in blue with artifacts, never in red). So color is really hard to pin down with this card. Mono-black is OK, but I don't think it's the best fit for this card. I would probably prefer blue/black, since that color combo feels like it would mess the most with dead things.
    Onto rules issues. Surprisingly, I don't see too much wrong with this card ruleswise. There might be something that I'm missing, but overall this seems like a pretty good way to make all of your permanents reanimateable.
    Balance: This really does depend on the cards around it. For example, this card seems decent in a format with Exhume and Nicol Bolas, Planeswalker, but a format like that existing is pretty unlikely. This seems like it's much more for the casual tables, where this can do the pretty fun stuff, but not do anything too broken. My big concern is the 0/0 P/T, since that could cause some power issues with things like Alesha, Who Smiles at Death or Reveillark, where the P/T clause is a drawback. I think P/T equal to CMC would be better.
    Creative Writing: I'm not sure I like the card being named in flavor text but not in the card name itself, but for the most part I really like the creative side of this.

    Polish:
    Challenge (2/2): Good.
    Quality (3/3): As stated above, I do think this is a pretty good template for never having been done before.

    Total: 20/25
    Design (5/10):
    Creativity: The 2-brid and artifact-ness switch it up a little bit, but this is pretty much just Phyrexian Gargantua.
    Elegance: The card itself is pretty clean and simple. The abilities don't really connect to the flavor too much, and there's really not much of a reason for this to be an artifact.
    Potential: The effect of drawing cards is nice, especially when attached to a creature, so some people will want this sort of effect.

    Development (6.5/10):
    Viability: There's very little distinction between 2-brid and mono-colored, so I don't really see a reason why this mana cost wouldn't be fine.
    Balance: This is pretty much a card that is designed to be interesting for limited, which this probably would be. There's very little chance a constructed deck would want this unless they could consistently cast this for 4 mana, in which case it would have a chance of being playable.
    Creative Writing: The lack of flavor text really hurts this card, as I feel the name could use the help by giving context to the card. Otherwise it is pretty generic and flavorless.

    Polish:
    Challenge (2/2): Good.
    Quality (3/3): Good.

    Total: 16.5/25
    Design (7.5/10):
    Creativity: Nothing too crazy, just a Fleshbag Marauder with undying, though it is an interesting twist to the card.
    Elegance: For essentially just adding a word to a card that's already been created, it actually adds a lot of depth to the card. It's interesting that this card can be a one-sided Barter in Blood or can be a good sac outlet that leaves behind a 3/2. I feel like this card would be interesting to play with.
    Potential: Sac outlets are always useful, as are creatures with good ETB effects, so there's plenty of potential here.

    Development (6/10):
    Viability: Definitely black. From a complexity standpoint, all the cards it resembles are uncommon. Adding the undying might be enough to bump it up to rare, especially given it's power level.
    Balance: Barter in Blood is 4 mana and hits everyone, and this is the same mana cost, is one-sided, and can be used in various other ways. This is definitely too powerful at 4. Even at 5 I might be a little bit weary.
    Creative Writing: "Mortiferous" sure is a word. Name and flavor text are both good and fit pretty well with the card.

    Polish:
    Challenge (2/2): Good.
    Quality (3/3): Good.

    Total: 18.5/25
    Design (8.5/10):
    Creativity: Utopia Tree with expand. The new ability twist is nice, though it does feel a bit like a land version of cascade.
    Elegance: The expand ability does a very good job of capturing the "green mana dork" feel that this card should be going for. The ability is a pretty interesting contrast between itself and something like Sylvan Ranger as you give away the ability to search for a land for the ability to hit a nonbasic you may want.
    Potential: Mana dorks are always useful, and this one has the upside of replacing itself with a land. Plenty of uses for this.

    Development (6.5/10):
    Viability: Birds of Paradise type cards are always rare, so this is fine.
    Balance: For comparison, let's look at Sylvan Caryatid, a very good constructed card. If you asked most players, I would guess that they would willing to trade off hexproof for the ability for a card to replace itself. Basically, I'm saying this is a bit on the pushed side. It's not so pushed that it would warp formats, as the card that replaces it is always a land, but this is a bit more powerful than I would be comfortable with.
    Creative Writing: I think this could fit a line of flavor text, but the overall feel of the card still comes through. "Knower" in the name feels a bit silly, though.

    Polish:
    Challenge (2/2): Good.
    Quality (3/3): Good.

    Total: 20/25
    Design (8/10):
    Creativity: The "discard hand then draw" ability has been seen before (Dangerous Wager and such), but never on a creature like this.
    Elegance: This is certainly an interesting ability drawback-wise, since it is a very really drawback until you can empty out your hand, at which point it becomes a plus. It's a very simple ability, but one that has a lot of play to it.
    Potential: Wheels are pretty popular, although this doesn't quite have the explosiveness that other popular wheel effects have (a la Wheel of Fortune). Still, this feels like a bit of a Johnny/Spike card, so there's some potential.

    Development (6/10):
    Viability: The ability isn't all that complex, but for uniqueness I think this is fine at rare. Red is obviously correct.
    Balance: I think this card would come up closer to the boundaries of playability if it had something to help it in combat. This card really feels like it needs haste or first strike or something to really be able to get in for damage. As it is, the body is probably just not good enough for this to be very playable.
    Creative Writing: I don't like that you made this a weird, since that is something that both feels and has been constrained to U/R. Other then that the name and flavor text are fine.

    Polish:
    Challenge (2/2): Good.
    Quality (3/3): Good.

    Total: 19/25
    Design (8/10):
    Creativity: Very unique effect, plays off of the design space opened up by Humble Defector.
    Elegance: The flavor of the ability is kind of weird. It's like he can help you only if he's helping your opponent, which seems strange to me. This is lessened by the fact that this sort of ability is cool and has some very nice gameplay to it.
    Potential: While the ability probably isn't quite as powerful as Humble Defector, it still brings out the Johnny juices of trying to abuse this without your opponent getting the benefit.

    Development (6.5/10):
    Viability: Nothing to say here, everything looks fine.
    Balance: I really just want this to be a 3/1. I feel like a 2/1 body is so negligible most of the time that it's usual going to be better to get the 4 damage. Either way, I don't think this would do anything in constructed, and in limited it would be good because any removal is good removal.
    Creative Writing: The flavor text makes him sound kind of white with all the self-sacrifice, and the name doesn't really fit the fact that he switches controller.

    Polish:
    Challenge (2/2): Good.
    Quality (2.5/3): Should be "if you do", not "if so".

    Total: 19/25
    Design (5.5/10):
    Creativity: Abilities are pretty unique, so that's good.
    Elegance: I'm not a big fan of an ability word that references a non-evergreen keyword. I think it would be fine just to say "Whenever an opponent casts a spell you own" or something like that. Also, the way the boon ability is worded is kind of odd. The "offer an opponent" part just seems out of place in a games that's essentially about killing one another. There's really nothing wrong with the mechanic itself, just the way it's implemented seems bad to me.
    Potential: I don't know who this card really appeals to other than limited Spikes. Timmies don't like the drawback, and there's no combo potential for Johnny.

    Development (7/10):
    Viability: Seems fine.
    Balance: As previously stated, this really is a card just for limited. In constructed formats there are bigger creatures without drawback. In limited this is good because a 3/4 for 3 mana is always good and the drawback shouldn't be too bad, especially since there is a very good chance the card will just be a land.
    Creative Writing: I would like a small line of flavor text. Dryad Merchant is an odd creature type, although it seems fine based on what the card does. Name seems good.

    Polish:
    Challenge (2/2): Good.
    Quality (3/3): Good.

    Total: 17.5/25

    Link: 20/25
    Guesswork: 16.5/25
    Flatline: 18.5/25
    SelesnyaNewLife: 20/25
    riliss: 19/25
    Figurative: 19/25

    Jimmy Groove: 17.5/25
    Posted in: Monthly Contests Archive
  • posted a message on MCC March Final Round - What!? Impossible! I can't be... DEFEATED!!!
    Synergies between the cards is a key part of the second challenge and as such it will reflect mostly in the critique of your second card.

    Design (7/10):
    Creativity: The discard effect feels fairly uncreative but actually hasn't been done all that much. The "can't lose" trigger on this is pretty nice.
    Elegance: The effects have a nice synergy on this card, though I feel like this effect won't often buy you more than a turn, since if you go below 0 life when they're are hellbent, you are likely to just die the next turn. Other than that the card feels pretty clean.
    Potential: This has some cool combo potential with stuff like Zur's Wierding. By itself it doesn't have crazy potential, but people do like discard.

    Development (6.5/10):
    Viability: "Can't lose" effects are unique enough that this is fine at mythic. Definitely black as well.
    Balance: Pretty underwhelming. 7 mana is a lot to pay for the discard effect (while Nath of the Gilt-Leaf costs 5), and the "can't lose" generally only buys you a turn unless it's being comboed with something else. This would definitely be fine at 6, and possibly still fine at 5.
    Creative Writing: I can get behind the flavor text. The idea of you making everyone suffer comes through nicely with this card.

    Polish:
    Challenge (2/2): Good.
    Quality (2/3): Triggers can occur at the end of phases. This would need to be change to the beginning of combat to get a similar effect that still works with the rules.

    Total: 17.5/25
    Design (7.5/10):
    Creativity: The split card twist is nice, but the front and back are pretty close to Liliana's Caress and Shrieking Affliction, respectively.
    Elegance: I really like the idea of the front side showing the person going mad and the back side being the person completely insane. Also works well with the first card as a win con. Small note: this feels to me like it should be a curse.
    Potential: As Liliana's Caress has shown, these cards are fun to build around.

    Development (6.5/10):
    Viability: Both of the effects are simple enough that this card is fine as uncommon (especially since both sides have essentially been printed as such).
    Balance: Liliana's Caress didn't break anything, so there's no reason this would either. It's a fun card, but not particularly powerful outside of casual formats.
    Creative Writing: That flavor text really sells this card. The names are also really solid so well done here.

    Polish:
    Challenge (2/2): Good.
    Quality (3/3): Good.

    Total: 19/25
    Design (6.5/10):
    Creativity: Kind of like a super Staff of Nin that instead of pinging stops you from ever losing.
    Elegance: I don't like that a card that prevents you from losing is so difficult to deal with. If a deck isn't running artifact removal, they just can't win. Platinum Angel is at least a creature and all colors have ways to deal with it.
    Potential: This seems like a good card to build around, and I hear people like drawing cards.

    Development (5.5/10):
    Viability: Seems fine.
    Balance: If it didn't have the "can't lose" text with it, this would be OK. Probably a bit on the expensive side, but still very powerful. With it, however, this requires opponents to have artifact removal or else it is an 8 mana "you win the game", which isn't OK.
    Creative Writing: No complaints here. Solid all around.

    Polish:
    Challenge (2/2): Good.
    Quality (3/3): Seems fine.

    Total: 17/25
    Design (9.5/10):
    Creativity: Pretty cool. The best way I can describe it is that someone decided to make a cycle out of Mortal Combat and Epic Struggle and thought "What should the blue one be?".
    Elegance: Frankly, it almost feels surprising that this isn't already a card. Having a lot of cards in your hand feels like a natural alternate win condition for blue. Also works well with your first card (not that it needs the help).
    Potential: An alternate win condition that involves drawing cards. Really wonder about the potential here. (Sarcasm aside, there is lots here.)

    Development (8.5/10):
    Viability: I always feel like alternate win conditions should be mythic, but recent history has shown that they don't have to be, so this is fine.
    Balance: While this would never show up in tournaments (Sphinx's Revelation was already close enough to saying "You win the game."), in casual circles and things like EDH this could be a rock star. In those formats, it's actually feasible that you draw enough cards to reach the 20 card threshold (I know I've done it). Still not the most powerful, but at least it isn't impossible to reach.
    Creative Writing: The flavor text feels very blue to me, so that's good. The name is pretty sweet.

    Polish:
    Challenge (2/2): Good.
    Quality (3/3): Good.

    Total: 23/25
    Design (8.5/10):
    Creativity: The loss trigger is cool, and has only really been done on Lich's Mirror. The rest of the card is pretty uninspiring.
    Elegance: The flavor of swooping in to save someone and shoot the attack right back at them is pretty cool.
    Potential: A fun casual card, and a bit of a Johnny card.

    Development (6/10):
    Viability: Yep.
    Balance: Feels pretty undercosted. There will be some "Gotcha!" moments, but a lot of the times this will just be Basilica Guards with flash, which isn't good. The combo potential with stuff like Ad Nauseum is cool, but not enough to save this card.
    Creative Writing: The Orzhov flavoring feels a bit tacked on, but overall the flavor is solid.

    Polish:
    Challenge (2/2): Good.
    Quality (3/3): Good.

    Total: 19.5/25
    Design (9.5/10):
    Creativity: Pretty cool. It's like Tree of Redemption and Biorhythm had a weird child.
    Elegance: For being so game breaking, the effect is actually fairly simple. It works very nicely with your first card as well.
    Potential: I don't know if this is a Timmy or Johnny card, but someone will use it.

    Development (6.5/10):
    Viability: I'm a little iffy on a card that can be cast with just black mana being able to skyrocket a creatures power, but usually hybrid cards get a little wiggle room, and black is allowed to get temporary attack increases, so this is fine.
    Balance: I'm not gonna act like I know how viable this is in Standard. I'm assuming it might be a control finisher and is probably too expensive elsewhere. The bigger issue is that this would be the bane of EDH games everywhere. Life setting cards are a bit taboo in multiplayer (thus why Biorhythm is banned in EDH and why everyone hates Sorin Markov), and getting to 9 mana in multiplayer games is much more feasible that other formats. That is a pretty big issue with this card.
    Creative Writing: Name and flavor text do a good job of present a super disgusting image, so kudos.

    Polish:
    Challenge (2/2): Good.
    Quality (3/3): Good.

    Total: 21/25
    Posted in: Monthly Contests Archive
  • posted a message on April MCC Judge Signups
    I will gladly judge again.
    Posted in: Monthly Contests Archive
  • posted a message on [Monthly Card Contest] ***MCC*** Discussion Thread
    Scores posted here. Really pleased with the cards this round.
    Posted in: Custom Card Contests and Games
  • posted a message on MCC March Round 3 - I Wasn't Always Like This...
    Scores are final.
    Like the first challenge, this one has a flavor component. As such, how well that flavor comes across is very important, so flavor portions of judging will weigh heavier in scoring than usual (though not as much as the first round).
    Lots of quality cards this round, and some pretty close scores as a result.

    Match 1:
    Design (8/10):
    Creativity: Seeing as how Gold artifact tokens have only recently become a thing, this card does explore some interesting space with that. It's kind of like a Manaweft Sliver for all creatures on one side and a flying Ashnod's Altar on the other.
    Elegance: The flavor a king overcome by greed and becoming this evil flying monster is very apparent through the mechanics of the card. What is much less apparent is the fact that this king is good to begin with. A king who sends out all of his minions to fetch him gold doesn't exactly sound like a nice guy.
    Potential: There is some rampy goodness to be had with this card, so there's definitely so Timmy-ness to it. It does have a pretty unique effect and ramps pretty hard, so there would be plenty of places to try this card.

    Development (6.5/10):
    Viability: I feel like of all the colors you could choose the front of the card to be, green and white are the worst two. Black is the obvious choice, since it's the color of greed and is the only color thus far to use Gold tokens. Red is the color of temporary mana, and at least blue has the ability to transform things (though I will say that would be a stretch here). Either way, green/white is definitely not the correct color combination for this card.
    Balance: Basically, how good is a Manaweft Sliver that affects all of your creatures. My guess is good, but nothing too broken. It does worry me a little bit that the creatures come in with the ability to tap for mana immediately, as that might push this card over the top. The flip side isn't two troublesome, as it's just a beefy Ashnod's Altar, which I don't think is a problem.
    Creative Writing: While the colors throw me off a little bit, for the most part all of the flavor writing for this card is a home run. The names are good (though "Avatar of Greed" seems a bit close to "Archdemon of Greed" to me). The flavor text is good, and the overall flavor of the card comes through very well.

    Polish:
    Challenge (2/2): Good.
    Quality (2.5/3): A little sloppy with grammar and spelling: The first "legendary" is misspelled, there's an extra period at the end of the first ability on the front face, the "t" in "They" should be capitalized, and there's no period at the end of the flavor text.

    Total: 19/25
    Design (7/10):
    Creativity: There aren't a whole lot of cards that card about other artifacts entering the battle field, and there certainly aren't any that produce mana and then flip into a creature.
    Elegance: It's kind of hard to wrap my head around the fact that casting artifacts creates and indestructible monster. I guess the idea is that looking for too much stuff around the tomb unleashes and evil force? Based on mechanics alone, that's pretty shaky for the card.
    Potential: Certainly a cool build around card for any type of artifact deck. It's powerful enough that it's worth trying to get active.

    Development (9/10):
    Viability: Artifacts can certainly produce colorless mana, and this certainly feels like a rare. All good here.
    Balance: I feel like as long as there aren't too many cheap artifacts running around, there's nothing really wrong with this. It has a similar effect to Etherium Sculptor, and that hasn't done anything too broken. Now, if it were put into a format with things like Memnite and Ornithopter it might get a bit hairy, but I think formats where that's likely to happen probably have good answers to these types of cards.
    Creative Writing: The names and flavor texts do their jobs and help get across the flavor that the mechanics themselves were missing. Basically, I'm saying it's good.

    Polish:
    Challenge (2/2): Good.
    Quality (3/3): There is no good reference for whether deathtouch or indestructible should come first, so you're good.

    Total: 21/25

    Match 3:
    Design (10/10):
    Creativity: The front is nothing crazy, but a transformed sorcery is certainly pushing this all the way to 11.
    Elegance: For a card that ruleswise is a nightmare, it's pretty easy to look at this card and understand what's going on. You copy some stuff as you please, then when you do it too much, KABOOM everything explodes. Very nice.
    Potential: Trying to combo off with this guy is certainly something that people would want to do, so I can easily see people being excited about this card, even if it is only in casual play.

    Development (5.5/10):
    Viability: It's late and I'm lazy, and since bravelion summed everything up so eloquently in a way that I couldn't even begin to, go look at his critique if you want to understand why this is a bit of a nightmare.
    Balance: Without building around this card to get it to flip, it's probably about the same power level of Nivix Guildmage, which is to say not very. So the real question is how easy is it to flip, and how much is it worth it. For the latter, the effect is probably game ending for the most part, so it's certainly worth trying to get. Unfortunately, getting this to go off is difficult. Realistically, the only way you're gonna perform this is if you are copying a bunch of rituals, and even with that this still isn't particularly easy, as you'll likely need at least 8 mana to even have a chance of going off. So while the effect is powerful, this card is not.
    Creative Writing: Very well done here. The names and flavor texts really convey that a scientist has gone mad and has literally become enveloped in his experiments.

    Polish:
    Challenge (2/2): Good.
    Quality (2/3): While the rules headaches have already been accounted for, the card is missing the standard "You may choose new targets for the copy" that comes with every copying effect.

    Total: 19.5/25
    Design (8/10):
    Creativity: It's kind of like if Stonehewer Giant and Bruna, Light of Alabaster had a baby that transformed into a ruthless killing machine. While it feels like it's borrowing some things from other cards, it's still very unique on it's own.
    Elegance: I really like the idea of this guy becoming so enveloped by his inventions that he becomes this unstoppable artifact monster. That being said, the fact that this can get Auras feels a little off when transforming into a giant artifact.
    Potential: It's a repeatable tutor, so I'm sure someone, somewhere would find a use for it. (In all seriousness there is a ton of potential in the effect this card gives)

    Development (7.5/10):
    Viability: I struggle to see the blue in this. Both Aura searching and Equipment searching are squarely in white, so I don't really see much of a need for it. Blue can search out artifacts, but when the typeline has Equipment on it, it falls squarely into white's territory.
    Balance: There's no reason to even consider the back of this card since if you are flipping this, you are almost certainly winning the game. However, the front of this card still feels like a pretty powerful effect. It's very easy to answer this the turn it comes down, but I imagine if you untap with this card in play, it's going to put you pretty far ahead since you can get any equipment or Aura. I imagine it's not that much more powerful than Stonehewer Giant, which is good but not broken, but I still might be a bit wary of it.
    Creative Writing: I think this is my favorite flavoring of a card this round. The flavor text and names are both on point.

    Polish:
    Challenge (2/2): Good.
    Quality (3/3): Good.

    Total: 20.5/25

    netn10: 19/25
    Flatline: 21/25

    Piar: 19.5/25
    Moss_Elemental: 20.5/25
    Posted in: Monthly Contests Archive
  • posted a message on [Monthly Card Contest] ***MCC*** Discussion Thread
    Final critiques are up here. I wish I had more time for them, but I have been busy.
    Posted in: Custom Card Contests and Games
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