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Magic: The Gathering» Forums » Variants

Subject: IS there a good card design guide out there rss

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Eric Pietrocupo
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I am looking for a guide to determine the cost of abilities, effects, and creature strength for designing my own cards. Does such guide exists?
 
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Tommy Occhipinti
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Mark Rosewater's weekly columns give a lot of good advice about the design side of MTG. It doesn't focus a lot on getting costs right, which is more the role of development (which also has a weekly column, of less consistent quality).

Mark's column does often focus on how to decide where to push power level, which is probably the most important part of power level, as one can print cards of a very wide range of power levels, and it can be correct to do so. Magic design is very focused on limited, so if you want to emulate actual Magic design you will have to get a strong handle on things like rarity. Mark has a number of articles about this.

I'll also plug Goblin Artisans (http://goblinartisans.blogspot.com/), which has a lot of discussion of Magic design and development, with tons of opportunities to try out designs and get feedback.

Aside: In my opinion, Magic design lately has been very sloppy, and I would not encourage budding designers to emulate their failing system. I have a lot of thoughts on why this is, but they are largely organizational, so I'll omit them here.
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Jeff Wiles
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delirimouse wrote:
I have a lot of thoughts on why this is, but they are largely organizational, so I'll omit them here.


If you decide to post those thoughts elsewhere, let us know.
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Eric Pietrocupo
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I think I saw that designer's article, but he seems to talk more about card design as whole, while I need card design individual. I understand the need to plan card design with the rest of the set, but it's not really my goal here.

I want to make some sort of experimentation in solitaire mode where players can design cards while playing the game. So I need some guide lines to know how much does ability X cost. Of course I could just improvise since I intend to play solo, but having some guide lines could help the creative process.

I was wondering if some people did not analyse range cost of certain abilities, cost vs strength ratio of creature, etc.
 
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Tommy Occhipinti
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The problem is really that if you ask "What should a vanilla 2/3 cost?" there are a ton of answers historically: 2B, 2U, 2R, WW, GG... In the most recent set, there is a strictly better 2/3 for 1G. Past sets have also had cards like Shambling Ghoul that are a little worse than a vanilla 2/3 for 1B.

Of course, at rare you get things like Sylvan Advocate, which is 1G for a 2/3 Vigilance with upside. Do only the cards good enough to make standard count? Only the cards good enough to see play in Modern/Legacy/Vintage? Or is the correct cost for a 2/3 simply a very large range?

Or, for that matter, compare Vampire Nighthawk and Insatiable Harpy, a card which is worse in about three different ways. There are countless examples of this.
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Mark McEvoy
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delirimouse wrote:
I'll also plug Goblin Artisans (http://goblinartisans.blogspot.com/), which has a lot of discussion of Magic design and development, with tons of opportunities to try out designs and get feedback.


More great places to get design feedback are in "You Make The Card" communities, two of which can be found at:

http://forum.nogoblinsallowed.com/viewforum.php?f=17
and
http://www.mtgsalvation.com/forums/creativity/custom-card-cr...


Both places are full of people such as the OP who have aspirations for card design but just need some feedback and guidance from time to time.
 
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Eric Pietrocupo
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Since I inted to play solo for my experience, maybe I'll just improvise using my judgement.

Now I might have found a solo variant. In the other solo suggestion thread I made, somebody posted a planeswalker card that use some sort of loyalty mechanic and does certain actions according to that loyalty level (I presume). I might give it a try against such mechanics.
 
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