State of the Project
While it’s on the sidebar, I want to make one of my occasional reminders that the cards can all be seen at http://homestuckthegathering.com. As can a draft of the new Rules that have been added for the new mechanics like “copy ability”, “drops grist”, “prototype”, and “prankster’s gambit”.
I am starting to work on cards for the second set in the block (Mobius Double Reacharound), while doing final tweaks and playtests to the first set (Sburban Jungle). The first set is as balanced as I expect to get it as far as color/rarity balance, but still probably needs work as far as CMC curve within each color, and balance of the new mechanics.
Another reminder is that this is primarily a Homestuck project, not a MtG project. While it is my intent that this be a fully playable set, I am allowing the set to do some things that I wouldn’t allow if it was primarily a MtG project- for instance, the Drops Grist mechanic, if I were building it as something primarily MtG, would only drop varying amounts of Build Grist so you wouldn’t always have to track which kinds of grist are running around. However, it’s just too much fun to have all these weird kinds of grist, so my plan is to provide a Tokens printout to make it easier to make sure that everyone has ways to represent it. Similarly, I am at the least calling this an “Expert” level expansion, as most MtG blocks do not do things like mix -1/-1 and +1/+1 counters (but things like Modern Magic are allowed to).
However, my long project to re-rarify creatures to lower rarities was a success- in my last sealed deck draft we both felt like we drafted plenty of creatures for the first time pretty much since I started. Also we got to play with Prototyping seriously, and it worked pretty well though I worry about the cards that have to remember which specific card they prototyped. We’ll see.
Things are a little slow here, what with holidays and other projects. I’ve honestly basically started working on Act 5 so people reading don’t get bored while I do all the tedious tweak/balancing work on the first set. ;)
The next set will probably steal some mechanics from Zendikar, as they have some similar themes- while we don’t really ever see a normal Sburb session, they do involve a lot of exploration and questing. So expect to see those concepts back, but beyond that I haven’t entirely decided on keywords. Prototype will stick around, as will Drops Grist. PG will probably get a little support but not be as major a push.
Hope you’re all having a good holiday season!
Clover’s suspend cost and time reduced- he was way overcosted. Now it’s suspend 2 — R/U R/U.
The Dragon that comes with Wizard of the Upper Indifference has been reduced to a 2/2, on the grounds that it’s recurring and that was easier than adding enough text to make you sacrifice it if the wizard leaves the battlefield.
Underling Swarm is now an instant that you can only cast on your turn before blockers are declared. That’s pretty similar to a sorcery except that it allows you to spend mana that comes from a Rust Imp to cast it.
Appearify no longer has its “if this is countered” section, which was only there for flavor and mostly didn’t work.
This is basically what I had initially wanted to do. I was inspired by Spoils of War, except I wanted to do -1/-1 counters rather than +1/+1. Thing is, by default this doesn’t work: “Distribute X -1/-1 counters among any number of target creatures, where X is the number of creature cards in target player’s graveyard,” because X is set upon resolution but targets are picked when you cast, and so you might wind up picking 5 targets and ending up with only 2 counters because someone exiled other creatures at instant speed. Spoils of War solves this by setting X upon casting, but I’d rather that you can muck with it while it’s on the stack.
So I abandoned it and made the version below, but then I thought of this- making an intermediary for the counters. Note that this can move any counter- if you someone put time counters on it, or spore counters, or whatever, you can move those too.
This ability lets you nuke anything you want if Horobi, Death’s Wail is on the field, because it’ll never actually move the counters- the ability will get countered because the act of activating it will have killed the target. If I decide this actually bothers me I’ll change it to “Remove a -1/-1 counter from Severed Chain: Put a -1/-1 counter on target creature.”
This one’s gonna take some testing. It’s interesting because you can tweak the penalty, and it can be used as anti-prototyping. It’s possible that I should have a couple more cards that exile from other people’s graveyards so you can sweep away stuff that’s been put there to prototype. (Note of course that nothing can interfere with “Prototype 3” if the card they want to prototype is among the three it mills!)
Really I wanted to have a card that cared how many creatures were in a graveyard, because I hope there will be self-mill decks for prototyping purposes.
This may be too redundant with the Black King of Derse, however, in as much as both can be black board clearers.
Actually, I just thought of another thing I could do that’s closer to my initial idea. Hold on…
I already have some mass destruction with the Black King of Derse and the Light Lancer, but… this is a reprint has Puppet in the name, and I needed a red rare, so for now I’ll make it a card. With some hesitation. Especially since red doing “destroy” instead of damage is somewhat outside its color pie nowadays. So this’ll be slated for removal if I get a better idea. :)
52 Card Pickup
Realized I didn’t have any drain life style effects so far, and wanted to have a way you could make people lose PG (which is what the old 52 card pickup card did) while still being a useful card.
The old version of this was a blue artifact that was a repeatable Donate. Which is dandy and all but there’s almost nothing in the set that is worth donating. I scrapped it entirely for a while, unable to think of a good way to make the concept of mailing something work, but I think this isn’t too bad. You each get something. It’s modeled after Gifts Ungiven crossed with Daxos of Meletis. I’m not sure if it’s actually useful or not. Certainly isn’t isn’t blatantly broken like Gifts Ungiven. It’s terrific in a multiplayer game with some politics going on. Has to be target opponent, though, because it’s just too good in any game with explicit teams.
Also, no longer the only pyxis in Magic!
Insane Corkscrew Haymaker
I had a lot of trouble with this card. The previous version has one of your creatures hit something for 3, and if that thing dies and your creature is still around, it hits something else for 2. Clunky as hell and uses one of your creatures as a source of damage because when the delayed trigger goes off who knows what ICH will be in or if it will even exist (if ICH gets forked, the copy disappears upon resolution, for instance), and I don’t know how the rules would handle that. How could it deal damage if it didn’t exist? Also, all targets are supposed to be set when a spell is cast, so targeting something during the resolution of a delayed trigger is… iffy. I mean, I could, but it’s a gray area.
So now the delayed trigger causes the dying creature to deal the damage, and to its controller. No more choices, no more worrying about what zone ICH itself is in when the delayed trigger goes off if it does. And, red had one too many uncommons and one too few commons, so this was able to move down in commonality.
Now if I want the set to be balanced in color (using hybrid to cheat), I will need 1 black uncommon, and 1 each black, red, and blue rare. Getting there. Considering saving those last cards until I’ve done another round of playtesting to see if I can find anything the set is missing, but I’ve mostly lost my main playtest partner so playtesting is slow going right now. That said if anyone sees anything the set is missing feel free to step up and say. :)
Serenity, Light of Democracy
I removed Serenity from the card list, which was mostly there because the name overlap was so cool but it’s an old card that doesn’t really fit anything. So I added an epithet to the name and gave her her own creature card.