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  • posted a message on Mothership Spoilers (1/5) - Oath of Chandra, Reality Smasher, few other cards
    Quote from Truth »
    Quote from RickCorgan »
    The "yeah, I'll keep watch" on Chandra's Oath flavor text is further proof that they are trying to not only do their own Avengers / Justice League, but also match the cringeworthy Hollywood lines and clichéd one-sided personalities. Card is nice, though.

    How dare they have a varied cast of characters. Chandra is already anything but one-dimension, she's the typical comic relief character you'd imagine her to be from quotes like this, but the thing that brought her back to Zendikar was mostly guilt and sensse of responsibility.
    What I mean is that I don't think their characters are unique or full-fledged or well-developed or anything. Magic has become a bit too obsessed with tropes for my tastes lately, and I feel this flies in the face of the brand's potential. For example: I think planeswalkers have a lot of potential, as they aren't really like anything on the current pop culture zeitgeist; they could be their own trope. But instead of developing them as something truly unique, WotC is settling for a glorified superhero group, which is a riff on the latest ephemerous Hollywood obsession. Chandra is basically the Human Torch, with the very same snarky lines. It's probably a good decision when it comes to gaining mainstream audiences in a somewhat easy way, but still massively disappointing from a storytelling perspective.

    TL;DR: they could have a Harry Potter (new IP that sets the standard in a particular genre), but are settling for a Percy Jackson (a less-than-exciting ripoff).
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • posted a message on Mothership Spoilers (1/5) - Oath of Chandra, Reality Smasher, few other cards
    The "yeah, I'll keep watch" on Chandra's Oath flavor text is further proof that they are trying to not only do their own Avengers / Justice League, but also match the cringeworthy Hollywood lines and clichéd one-sided personalities. Card is nice, though.
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • posted a message on Prophet of Distortion
    Quote from TwinSais »
    Flavor-text almost meets the "holy *****, that's cringeworthy" criteria.
    My thoughts exactly. To be honest, most of this set's revealed flavor text so far is pretty close to awful.
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • posted a message on Shadows Over Innistrad April 2016
    I'm interested to see what they do with Innistrad story-wise after Avacyn Restored. I really didn't like what they did with Khans of Tarkir's time-travelling shenanigans, but I do like BFZ. I guess we'll see.

    That all said, I'm a bit worried about back-to-back return blocks.
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • posted a message on Black Blighted Land + The remaining 3 Blighted Lands
    I wish those entered the battlefield tapped and added colored mana, but they're great either way.
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • posted a message on Vryn Wingmare
    Quote from Avatar »
    Thalia's still better though. 1 CMC more just for flying isn't that exciting.
    She is, but the fact that this isn't legendary is quite nice too.
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • posted a message on Seems like a launch promo card - Mizzium Meddler
    Quote from Empathogen »
    Actually, yeah- I could see Modern ST decks trying this instead of Spellskite-
    It may cost more, but it works much better as an "alternate" target for Splinter Twin.
    An untapped copy of this enchanted with ST is going to limit your opponent's options severely.
    You mean... just like Spellskite does, whether it's tapped or untapped, or whether it's enchanted by a Splinter Twin or not?

    There's nothing this does that Spellskite can't.
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • posted a message on The Problem with the Tarkir Timelines
    I generally hate time travelling because I don't think anyone has ever managed to tell such a story in a manner that succesfully suspended my disbelief. Tarkir is no different, although, when it comes to ranking every single time travel story I've read/watched, it's certainly placed near the bottom.

    Oh, well. Even at the height of my interest in Magic storyline, I never thought it was exactly amazing fiction anyway, so I think I'll survive. I do hope to eventually read something in the game's canon that entertains me as much as stuff like Brothers' War, The Thran, and Kamigawa. I admit Theros came close.
    Posted in: Magic Storyline
  • posted a message on Dragon Monuments
    The only reason I bothered to check them all was the flavor text, which is fine worldbuilding aid. Some variety when it comes to their sizes/abilities certainly wouldn't hurt.
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • posted a message on DTK, MM2, Origins: Pax East Panel discussion!
    Quote from Rob7045713 »
    ...then return her to the battlefield...

    Well then, that is some new templating.
    This has been the norm for legends and planeswalkers for a while now. See Gideon Jura ("prevent all damage that would be dealt to him").
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • posted a message on DTK, MM2, Origins: Pax East Panel discussion!
    All of my yes to double-faced creature/planeswalker cards representing their sparks triggering. ALL OF MY YES.

    Huge flavor win, which is nice after being let down in a big way by Tarkir block's storyline.
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • posted a message on Cunning Breezedancer
    Nice workaround the lack of prowess, but this card would be much cooler if it read "Flying, prowess, prowess".
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • posted a message on Uncharted Realms Discussions
    Quote from Vorthospike »
    Since no one knows how time travel should work (let alone fictional time travel caused by stepping into the tomb of a dead spirit dragon) there are no reasonable assumptions to be made about how it works. For instance why is "only silver can travel through time" reasonable but not "individuals are preserved quantities"? Neither violates any actual rules of time travel.
    One, however, violates basic common sense. It's easy to understand that, if your great, great, great grandfather is killed in a time travel event, you will cease to exist. Even if you were to assume you'd still exist in some capacity, you wouldn't look the same, or be called the same. On the other hand, "common silver goes unscathed through a time portal" doesn't violate any such basic line of thinking. Who knows, maybe a quantum physicist would be able to demonstrate why that shouldn't be the case, but by then he will have lost 99% of the people who are the target audience for this story, so that doesn't matter in the end.

    And again, I do understand that keeping the same characters / names / etc help in the storytelling; as in, it gives people known quantities to compare between the two timelines. I'm just saying that, in my pesonal opinion, they went to far here, thanks to the incredibly high time gap and the cataclysmic proportions of the time-altering event. It's just not able to suspend my disbelief enough, due to how blatant those perceived flaws are in my eyes. It just doesn't make for good, or even passable storytelling in my eyes. Yes, it will vary from person to person, but I obviously can only speak for myself.
    Posted in: Magic Storyline
  • posted a message on Uncharted Realms Discussions
    Quote from Subbak »
    Quote from northprophet »
    Just enjoy the ride people, not all stories have to fit into your logic to be enjoyed. And lets be clear on this; entertainment is more important than logic in these stories. If your willing suspension of disbelief can't extend that far, then maybe you should either stick to harder forms of speculative fiction or avoid the genre altogether. I'm not saying that to be snarky; fantasy requires a stretch of acceptance that not everyone can make. When you go as far as MtG's setting goes, applying real-world logic or modern scientific knowledge to it can be a sure-fire way to ruin your experience of the story. There's a large degree of internal consistency within the Tarkir storyline IMO, and most of the problems people point out with it come from outside Tarkir ("This previous MtG storyline was better"), outside MtG ("I like how franchise X did time travel more than this"), or meta problems ("I hate time travel stories"). I don't like all the characters (Sidisi and Shu Yun were particularly underdeveloped, I think) and there was rather weak writing on some of the "filler" entries; but the main plot so far has been pretty good, especially since Sarkhan's little time-jump back. I like that even though Sarkhan has a better sense of himself, he's still wildly emotional and having a hard time understanding the effects of his actions in the past.
    Quote from Trivmvirate »
    Well guys this is a fantasy not the real world so what's the big deal.

    "A wizard did it" is not a good trope. I, and many other people, prefer stories to be internally consistent so that I can get involved. If I'm rooting for Frodo to go to Mount Doom and destroy the ring, I don't want him to suddenly say "actually, we don't need to go to Mount Doom, instead I'll just use this artifact we never mentionned that can destroy the ring forever". If you introduce a very rare Spice that enables you to do all kinds of magic, you don't want to casually mention that actually all that magic is done without the Spice by other factions in the Empire. It's easy to conceive of consistent rules for time travel. There are basically two flavors:
    * Temporal loops. There is only one universe, and whatever happened happened. But instead of being acyclic, the causality graph can have arrow in both directions. An object can exist only because of a time loop: for exampe I can come across an object, then travel back in time to put it where I know I will find it: this object does not exist outside of a time loop. It can make some interesting stories but it's quite hard to use correctly as a plot device.
    * Alternate universes. Everythime you go back in time you create a new universe, originated at your point of arrival, with no possible communication. Those rarely make interesting stories.
    * Unspecified rules. Those are for stories that are really "fish out of temporal water" instead of using time travel as a plot device. Basically the time travel happens at the beginning and does not feature later in the story. I don't really count those as time-travel stories for this reason.

    Warning: The following rant may be hard to follow, it's hard to judge. The TL;DR version is "too many big things change for us to accept that the small things stay the same."

    Generally, good but not great time travel stories use non-explicit rules that are slightly inconsistent: you do create an alternate universe but somehow "merge" with your copy from that universe so that you are only one being. This is for example what is done is the Back to the Future movies. Yes, upon closer inspection they make no sense: Marty would definitely not exist with the same appearance and personnality given the different history of his parents, I mean according to all probability he was not made from the same gametes, and certainly not raised in the same environment. But at least you can sort of believe it: the movie handwaves this partly using "time loop" tropes, with Marty's mother mentionning that Marty is a nice name, and so on.
    In this story, we have massive changes made a very, very long time ago, that somehow completely changed several aspects of Tarkir while leaving other untouched. Statistically, all the ghostfire warriors executed by Ugin were ancestors of all KTK-present Jeskai, which means their genealogy in DTK should be completely different. Even with an explanation (as in Terry Pratchett) of the universe wanting to right itself towards a "default" version, it does not justify the fact that many characters had completely different parents and yet apparently turned out to look and be named the same as some other character from KTK. It's even worse when you consider that there are probably a lot less humans in this version of Tarkir than in the previous one. If this is the case, then why do all the characters have "new" versions. Did the magical time-travel thing note the personalities of a select few humans and ported them into this new reality while making a backstory for them? Why them? It feels arbitrary and forced, and not at all what you would expect given the premise.

    To try to put it another way: if someone made a movie about a white person returning through time to the American Civil War and making the South win instead of the North, you would not expect the protagonist to return to their present day family and find the same people with the same name, but owning slaves. That would normally utterly break your suspension of disbelief. The change in the universe is more important by several orders of magnitude than what people look like or what they're called. When Marty changes the relationship between his parents, we buy it that he stays mostly the same. When uchronies change the outcome of a war or another, we buy it that history after that stays roughly the same (for example: WW1 and WW2 still happen evn if the SOuth win the Civil War). When someone goes to the Jurrasic to get a dinosaur egg, we buy it that they did not change anything to our present when the butterfly effect could really have made everything different. But here we have a dragon sized-butterfly that fails to even produce enough wind to pick up a piece of paper.
    Very interesting read. I certainly agree with what you're trying to convey.

    I just want to point out that in the case of something like Back to the Future, it's a bit different. That movie doesn't really take itself too seriously, so when you see absurd stuff like Marty's image slowly vanishing from a picture when he intrudes on his parents getting together, you laugh it off. It's the same thing on something like Futurama, with the "Fry is his own grandfather" storyline. Personally, if someone is doing a time travel story, I'd rather it be something like that. If they're going all straight-faced about it, I'll expect them to handle it in a believable manner, and chances are they will fail.
    Posted in: Magic Storyline
  • posted a message on Uncharted Realms Discussions
    Quote from Vorthospike »

    Goodness its almost as though he's a character encountering people to who he has a deep emotional connection rather than a detached observer. I'm sure they'll get right on fixing that.
    He has to be pretty naive to let himself get carried away like that. Even as he decided to alter the past, it should be pretty obvious that he'd have written himself out of those people's lives, no matter how attached he is to them. It's the kind of reasoning I'd expect from a character in a kid's cartoon, not from stories aimed at young adults. And even then, the "lovingly holding an attacking globin" thing is just plain ridiculous for a non-comedy, even if it's aimed at kids.

    Quote from Skyknight »

    (And to get a sense of your perspective, when did the Magic storyline stop holding appeal for you?)
    The last physical books I purchased were the ones from the original Ravnica block. I got very disillusioned at all the retconning and deus-ex machinae during Time Spiral, and have been more of a casual observer since them (by contrast, I was very heavily invested in the game's lore before then).
    Posted in: Magic Storyline
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