[3DD] Trimester One: Elegance in Card Design

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Welcome students, to your first trimester in this glorious institution, and to this subject, Elegance in Card Design. This subject is headed by both I, Professor Crouch, and Assistant Professor Elevate, who'll pop in from time to time. I trust you will show him the same respect as you will show me.

Let me begin by outlining to you my teaching methods, so there are no misconceptions. I am known to be a tough judge, often being quite critical in my critique. Let me say from the outset that no matter how harsh I am in my judging technique, my criticisms are not personal. Please do not be offended by any tone I might take.
I am a firm believer that ignorance is no excuse, thus Gatherer is your best friend here. Also, I will not tolerate plagiarism or collusion in any form whatsoever. If I deign you to be guilty of plagiarism or collusion when asked to submit original design, you will immediately fail the course.
I expect any cards submitted to be worded correctly, or worded to the best of your ability. Again, if you are having trouble wording your card, consult Gatherer for similarly worded effects.

To reiterate what has been said in the Registration thread, you must score an overall mark of 50% to pass this subject.


Now, with the formalities out of the way, we can begin exploring the course work!

Elegance can be described as grace of style, and is a highly important factor in designing cards that people like, simply by looking at them. This is achieved through a variety of techinques, most of which I will cover in this subject. Of course, there are innumerable ways to create elegance, but that's a topic for another day.

The first topic we will be discussing is Elegance through restraint.
A great man once said "good design is as little design as possible". There is great truth in this statement, and it applies strongly to Magic. If every card did everything, there would be a small, finite number of cards that could be designed - if something can exist without a component, then make it so. Thus, elegance is what allows the game to be diverse through its individual components, i.e. the cards.

Students, your first assignment is this: Scour the YMtC forums for five cards which you believe are doing too much, then correct these designs by removing aspects of that card and adjusting numbers and mana costs accordingly. You may not add new aspects to these cards.
Notes: These cards cannot be ones that you have designed, and you must link me to the original designs when you submit your assignment.

This assignment is to be submitted to me via PM, and your first submission is treated as your final submission. It will be worth 20% of your total grade for this subject, and you have 72 hours from this post to submit your work.

Class Progress Report





TheMamga
Assignment 1 - Restraint: 6/20

theatog
Assignment 1 - Restraint: 5.5/20

Dirdle
Assignment 1 - Restraint: 11/20

bobby2055
Assignment 1 - Restraint: 16/20
Gah, you aren't pulling punches are you?
My Resume
57106328 wrote:

And the trophy for the round goes to:
trophy.png DrJWilson - I really like how all the abilities worked together to create a really sweet card. This will be a popular pick for sure.


57718868 wrote:
1) DrJWilson 2) Silly Dragons 3) Libe
58325628 wrote:
Excellent design. Always loved Doubling Season and this card is an awesome variation on that.
58234648 wrote:
As for the card itself, it is quite possible the best use of mono-red vigilance I've ever seen on the boards. Well done.
58234648 wrote:
Love it.
58234648 wrote:
Very good design.
58025228 wrote:
I love it. Just find a good deck to use it against.
58025228 wrote:
i like it. I can imagine a bear eating a land or something then farting out the land's essence.
58325628 wrote:
Reminds me of a card I was working on earlier. I love the flavor and mechanics of this card. Great design and brilliant concept.
93144081 wrote:
I don't care if the white zombies are off, I just really like this card. Also seems likes its got a backstory I'd like to hear about. Like how I was interested in Anowon, the Ruin Sage before I realized he came from a web comic.
[quote author=64133868 post=462195821]
83237429 wrote:
88993869 wrote:
<3
58021268 wrote:
<4
<5 XD
Present.  Will actually read your notes tonight.
Objection! Many people say that no power can bring the mountains low. Many people are fools. I have one of those dragon thingies. IMAGE(http://dragcave.net/image/V6Fr.gif)
I love this assignment.
I love this ass.



heh
I shall venture to the very depths of ymtc.
IMAGE(http://kherkeep.com/images/smilies/plowbeast.png)Why can't everyone see the inherent goodness in destruction? Or the evil in creation? A forest cannot live without the nutrients provided by the destructive force of a forest fire. And if I am wrong, then why is lifeblood of creation - water - the most destructive force on the planet? 701.4. Cast
44 hours remaining for students to submit the first assignment.
I just noticed TRIMester One. Ho ho ho.

What? Nononono, I'm absolutely capable of doing my work AND making light-hearted comment, professor. Honest.
I'm really looking forward to seeing everyone's homework.
but i have a question now.


by adding a new aspect. does this mean i am not allowed to change the wording or change the card's intent.

IE " Whenever ~ deals damage, destroy each creature it dealt damage to." vs "Deathtouch"


they have a very similar intent (killing a creature when it is dealt damage by this guy) but they are mechanically different.

is it changing the aspect or removing and adding a new aspect?


edit: already done.
IMAGE(http://kherkeep.com/images/smilies/plowbeast.png)Why can't everyone see the inherent goodness in destruction? Or the evil in creation? A forest cannot live without the nutrients provided by the destructive force of a forest fire. And if I am wrong, then why is lifeblood of creation - water - the most destructive force on the planet? 701.4. Cast
How much longer on this big P Crouch?
Objection! Many people say that no power can bring the mountains low. Many people are fools. I have one of those dragon thingies. IMAGE(http://dragcave.net/image/V6Fr.gif)
Come on guys, I finished this and I'm not even in this class :D! 
My Resume
57106328 wrote:

And the trophy for the round goes to:
trophy.png DrJWilson - I really like how all the abilities worked together to create a really sweet card. This will be a popular pick for sure.


57718868 wrote:
1) DrJWilson 2) Silly Dragons 3) Libe
58325628 wrote:
Excellent design. Always loved Doubling Season and this card is an awesome variation on that.
58234648 wrote:
As for the card itself, it is quite possible the best use of mono-red vigilance I've ever seen on the boards. Well done.
58234648 wrote:
Love it.
58234648 wrote:
Very good design.
58025228 wrote:
I love it. Just find a good deck to use it against.
58025228 wrote:
i like it. I can imagine a bear eating a land or something then farting out the land's essence.
58325628 wrote:
Reminds me of a card I was working on earlier. I love the flavor and mechanics of this card. Great design and brilliant concept.
93144081 wrote:
I don't care if the white zombies are off, I just really like this card. Also seems likes its got a backstory I'd like to hear about. Like how I was interested in Anowon, the Ruin Sage before I realized he came from a web comic.
[quote author=64133868 post=462195821]
83237429 wrote:
88993869 wrote:
<3
58021268 wrote:
<4
<5 XD
I am no longer accepting assignments, time is up. I have received work from all students apart from theatog, who shall receive a 0 for this piece of work.
Assignment 1 - Restraint: Grades

bobby2055
Asha's Steward: Very similar in effect to Angel of Salvation. Also, needs a 'this turn' clause. 2.5/4
Iron-Hearted Barbarian: Nice. Just make sure to check the wording after you copy and paste. 4/4
Fearsome Woodmaw: This didn't need to be costed at , it was fine beforehand. 2/4
Flash Bolt: I'd probably make it say "you may have it deal 4 damage to target creature" in case there are no other creatures on the battlefield. 3.5/4
Venomous Gaze: Yes. This is really good. 4/4

Total Grade Contribution: 16%

Dirdle
CARDNAME: That activated ability is horrendously overpowered. Also, the first line of text should probably read someting more like "You may Delve to reduce casting costs of spells you cast." 2/4
Erosive Deposition: That second line of text is needlessly complicated. You may as well have the person choose up to two lands to begin with. 2/4
Bronze Dragon: No idea why the activated ability has in the activation cost. Other than that, acceptable. 3/4
Jodah the Champion: Decent, but I don't like how it has no creature class. 3.5/4
Hiding Ponds: Wow, that's a bad card. Lands that are strictly worse than Karoos tend to be bad, yet you could've fixed it. 0.5/4

Total Grade Contribution: 11%

TheMamga
Siege Preparations: You've effectively done nothing to change the card, all you've really done is fix the wording and dropped the cost by . 0/4
Firm and Final: Hmm, not terrible. Just remember to proof-read your work next time. 3/4
Army to Plantation: Again, the card is largely identical to before, albeit costed better. I was really looking for some bigger changes than removing "Draw a card". 0.5/4
Danin, Sun Soldier: Multiple instances of lifelink are now redundant, so you have made this card soooo much worse than the original. 0/4
Fungus Zombie: Again, the change is far too subtle. At least this time though, the alteration is functional. 2.5/4

Total Grade Contribution: 6%

theatog
Manmade Sun: You haven't given it a typeline. Also, the "doesn't untap" clause could've been comfortably removed. 1/4
Territorial Dispute: Your link doesn't work. I'm going to assume that the first iteration of the card is the original. You've failed to quote a mana cost, so that's a negative. But it's a lot cleaner and functional, so I'll give you some credit there. 2.5/4
Brave Decoy: Again, the link doesn't work, and I've nothing to compare it to. 0/4
Well Digger: Link doesn't work, and again, you've failed to quote mana symbols. You've also failed to give your card a P/T. As for the ability, it's a little cleaner, but a little too different compared to the original. The aim was to delete text, not rewrite it. 0.5/4
Susceptible Channeler: Link doesn't work, but you've quoted correctly at least. It's not much of a functional change, all you've really done is limit it to the opponents abilities, and decluttered the wording. Whilst the card is good, the alteration is unimpressive. 1.5/4

Total Grade Contribution: 5.5%
Apologies for the lack of my posting the next assignment - think of this as time to do some research in the art of elegance.
I am no longer accepting assignments, time is up. I have received work from all students apart from theatog, who shall receive a 0 for this piece of work.


I'm very sorry. I am usually very busy in the weekend. I work 6 days a week and I try to squeeze my fun in the barely 1 day weekend. Is it possible to request that submission date do not lie on the weekends. 

I have my assignment ready by Friday on my work computer. I was not satisfied with 2 of the answers i have and I also have questions similar to what The Magma asked. I didn't have the time to do all this. Just anything other than the weekend please?


Edit: if possible, can i resubmit my assignment or ommit the grade for this? I do want to do well in this.

"A designer knows he has achieved perfection not when there is nothing left to add, but when there is nothing left to take away." - Antoine de Saint-Exupry

[spoiler MLP]Congratulations, you've found My Lie Policy: Only when i'm prompted, i might lie. (policy still in the refinement process.) [/spoiler] [spoiler I am both rational and instinctive. I value self-knowledge and understanding of the world; my ultimate goal is self-improvement and improvement of the world around me. At best, I am focused and methodical; at worst, I am obsessive and amoral.]I am Blue/Green
I am Blue/Green

[/spoiler]
I am no longer accepting assignments, time is up. I have received work from all students apart from theatog, who shall receive a 0 for this piece of work.



I'm very sorry. I am usually very busy in the weekend. I work 6 days a week and I try to squeeze my fun in the barely 1 day weekend. Is it possible to request that submission date do not lie on the weekends. 

I have my assignment ready by Friday on my work computer. I was not satisfied with 2 of the answers i have and I also have questions similar to what The Magma asked. I didn't have the time to do all this. Just anything other than the weekend please?



Edit: if possible, can i resubmit my assignment or ommit the grade for this? I do want to do well in this.



I will accept your submission this once, but if you have issues with submitting your work in the future, please let me know before the piece is due.
Sorry. I miscalculated and i thought i could've submitted my homework on Monday. : ( 

"A designer knows he has achieved perfection not when there is nothing left to add, but when there is nothing left to take away." - Antoine de Saint-Exupry

[spoiler MLP]Congratulations, you've found My Lie Policy: Only when i'm prompted, i might lie. (policy still in the refinement process.) [/spoiler] [spoiler I am both rational and instinctive. I value self-knowledge and understanding of the world; my ultimate goal is self-improvement and improvement of the world around me. At best, I am focused and methodical; at worst, I am obsessive and amoral.]I am Blue/Green
I am Blue/Green

[/spoiler]
Edited grades to include theatog. Next assignment on the way.
Attention students, the next topic we will be discussing is one of great importance in regards to design elegance, aesthetics.

Aesthetics relates to what is the basic human sense of beauty. When something just feels right, it can be described as aesthetically pleasing. These aesthetics can be evoked through several design strategies, most of which I hope to touch on.
Before that though, I want to know what makes a card feel right for you, the students. It will give me an insight on where to take this course next.

Your next assignment: Write a short essay (no more than 250 words) on what makes a card design (or series of designs) resonate with your sense of aesthetics. I'm not interested in card artwork or flavour text, but discussion about overall card flavour intertwined with design is acceptable.

This assignment is to be submitted to me via PM, and your first submission is treated as your final submission. It will be worth 10% of your total grade for this subject, and you have 72 hours from this post to submit your work.
Crouch, sorry i have to do this 2 times in a row. I will be on a trip until sunday. July 1st is Canada Day and i took friday off for a 4 day weekend trip. I will have no access to computers. I will try to get it done today, if I can't please excuse my submission until later? 

(This almost feels like work, LOL, where I have to get day off in advance)

"A designer knows he has achieved perfection not when there is nothing left to add, but when there is nothing left to take away." - Antoine de Saint-Exupry

[spoiler MLP]Congratulations, you've found My Lie Policy: Only when i'm prompted, i might lie. (policy still in the refinement process.) [/spoiler] [spoiler I am both rational and instinctive. I value self-knowledge and understanding of the world; my ultimate goal is self-improvement and improvement of the world around me. At best, I am focused and methodical; at worst, I am obsessive and amoral.]I am Blue/Green
I am Blue/Green

[/spoiler]
Just to paraphrase, you want us to write an essay on what we think makes a card mechanically look "pretty?"
Objection! Many people say that no power can bring the mountains low. Many people are fools. I have one of those dragon thingies. IMAGE(http://dragcave.net/image/V6Fr.gif)

Hey, I made Asha's Steward on another thread!
Asha's Steward mana_5.gifwhitemana.gifwhitemana.gifwhitemana.gif
Creature - Angel
Flash, flying, vigilance, protection from red spells and from black spells
When Asha's Steward comes into play, prevent all damage that would be dealt to you and creatures you control. You gain 8 life.
"Before she left, Asha told us to watch over her followers.  We will not fail her."
4/5

It better not be the same one :P!



Its probably not the same, since mine's nothing like Angel of Salvation, but I claim rights to the name!

"I don't mean to sound bitter, cynical, or cruel, but I am, so that's how it comes out" -Bill Hicks
Our job was to find cards that we thought were doing "too much" and make them more simple.  I chose your card as one of my submissions and by removing certain aspects of it, it did become mechanically similar to angel of salvation.

Thank you for your inspiration.
Objection! Many people say that no power can bring the mountains low. Many people are fools. I have one of those dragon thingies. IMAGE(http://dragcave.net/image/V6Fr.gif)
Our job was to find cards that we thought were doing "too much" and make them more simple.  I chose your card as one of my submissions and by removing certain aspects of it, it did become mechanically similar to angel of salvation.

Thank you for your inspiration.




Ah, I see.
I'm glad my incompetence inspired you. :P
"I don't mean to sound bitter, cynical, or cruel, but I am, so that's how it comes out" -Bill Hicks
Not imcompetence.  Your card was great in its own right.  But in my opinion it was doing a bit too much.

:P
Objection! Many people say that no power can bring the mountains low. Many people are fools. I have one of those dragon thingies. IMAGE(http://dragcave.net/image/V6Fr.gif)
Thanks. If you don't mind, can I see the editted version?
"I don't mean to sound bitter, cynical, or cruel, but I am, so that's how it comes out" -Bill Hicks
Asha's Steward
Creature - Angel
Flash, flying
When Asha's Steward comes into play, prevent all damage that would be dealt to you.
"Before she left, Asha told us to watch over her followers.  We will not fail her."
4/5
Objection! Many people say that no power can bring the mountains low. Many people are fools. I have one of those dragon thingies. IMAGE(http://dragcave.net/image/V6Fr.gif)
Just to paraphrase, you want us to write an essay on what we think makes a card mechanically look "pretty?"


In a nutshell, yes.
Just to paraphrase, you want us to write an essay on what we think makes a card mechanically look "pretty?"



In a nutshell, yes.


K, I will turn in my assignment tonight.
Objection! Many people say that no power can bring the mountains low. Many people are fools. I have one of those dragon thingies. IMAGE(http://dragcave.net/image/V6Fr.gif)

I haven't forgotten about this, I've just not been able to get around to grading it. I will though, do not fear.

ba-da-
Objection! Many people say that no power can bring the mountains low. Many people are fools. I have one of those dragon thingies. IMAGE(http://dragcave.net/image/V6Fr.gif)
Professors JohnnyValdez and BelangiaJo seem to have disappeared for some unknown reason; Professor Crouch told me to relay the message that he is putting this contest on hold until they return.
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