7/02/2010 LD: "Scry Havoc"

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This thread is for discussion of this week's Latest Developments, which goes live Friday morning on magicthegathering.com.
Can we have Magma Jet back please?
If Limited gets in the way of printing good Constructed cards... Screw limited
viscera seer is a flavor homerun, and i've temporarily swallowed my hatred of these boards and braved the miserable log in process to say that.

but would it have been overpowered to make it scry 2? especially since i'm sacrificing a whole creature.
I don't know why, but I like it.
viscera seer is a flavor homerun, and i've temporarily swallowed my hatred of these boards and braved the miserable log in process to say that.

but would it have been overpowered to make it scry 2? especially since i'm sacrificing a whole creature.


It could be Scry 3 or 4 and still be fair.

Yo WotC!  I'm saccing my dudes here, gimmie stuuuuuuuf.
but would it have been overpowered to make it scry 2? especially since i'm sacrificing a whole creature.



Yeah, I agree. At least you can add things that benefit from saccing: Mortician Beetle, Thraximundar, Kresh the Bloodbraided etc... No harm in getting rid of a few Eldrazi Spawn to Scry ;)
98% of people use statistics in their sigs, or have used them in the past. If you are one of the 2% that haven't or don't, place this into your signature. New Magic Forums, Im'a let you finish, but the old Magic Forums were one of the greatest boards of all time!
Hmm, Scry 1 for the c ost of a creature may sometimes be not good enough, but hey: It's a one mana common... And as Tom said, you can use it in response to removal. Lightning Bolt to your 3/3 dude? sac it for cardadvantage! Or, if your opponent doesn't wish to give you that, and 'waste' his/her removal spell, you're dude is still save. The latter one may not be the best example, but scry 1 isn't too weak, I think.
That me and those other submitters all agree on what an ooze is supposed to do is indicative of why the card works as a whole package.


Is this some sort of bad dream, or did that seriously get past an editor?
That flavor text on Foresee is explicit. But it's kind of cool!

I really like Viscera Seer. It really reminds me of Thoughtpicker Witch, and the 0-mana activation on Viscera Seer seems to make it better than the Witch. Play it in a deck with lots of tokens, especially with the Slime and the Eldrazi Drones, and you'll be drawing nothing but business spells every turn, many of which should make even more tokens.
That me and those other submitters all agree on what an ooze is supposed to do is indicative of why the card works as a whole package.



Is this some sort of bad dream, or did that seriously get past an editor?


What's wrong with it? (Contrary to popular belief, "me and X" is fine in some contexts; it's an incorrect so-called "hypercorrection" to always replace it with "X and I".)
Jeff Heikkinen DCI Rules Advisor since Dec 25, 2011
That me and those other submitters all agree on what an ooze is supposed to do is indicative of why the card works as a whole package.




Is this some sort of bad dream, or did that seriously get past an editor?



What's wrong with it? (Contrary to popular belief, "me and X" is fine in some contexts; it's an incorrect so-called "hypercorrection" to always replace it with "X and I".)


It is correct as the object of a clause (although some would consider "X and me" to be more polite).  "Me" should never be the subject of a clause.
I'm sorry, but I don't like the card.
First of all, scry is a blue (maybe white) ability.
Fateseal on the other side, is a blue (maybe black) ability.

You can see, it matters in which color-direction a blue mage is shifting. A black mage not just seeks power, he want to best or dominate others. A white mage on the other hand, gives guidance and protection and feels great for helping others. A blue mage sits in between and tends to both sides. He prefers knowledge to control the flow of events.

Scrying as a game mechanism means, that you can look at the top X cards, reorder them or shuffle the library. This means that you do not gain additional power, but a better knowledge. And this is, why it's mainly blue. However, it is more useful as a white 'support' card, because it only predicts the direct future. It can be used as a guidance for your actions pr stays random. Why should a black mage use this effect? He seeks power, which means - in game terms - seaches for ir. The pronounciation is 'searches'.

And if you look at 'fateseal' a much better black 'scry', there's already the Thoughtpicker Witch. A direct reprint with 'fateseal 2' and activation cost, would have been the right choice.

This card is power-crap and flavor-crap.
Reminds me a bit about Greater Gargadon which one used more or less because you could sacrifice your guys in response to removal that had more ffects than just removing (for instance Faith's Fetters or for a more timely example Ajani Vengeant's ability or Maelstrom Pulse) which can be very useful. However, instead of getting a big gargadon, we now get to scry a bit. Another thing is that when the opponent does a mass destruct, you can suddenly scry for a LOT (and if it was scry 2, that would be really awesome...)
I'm sorry, but I don't like the card.
First of all, scry is a blue (maybe white) ability.
Fateseal on the other side, is a blue (maybe black) ability.



I disagree. The flavour of this card is perfect--it's a vampire who kills a creature and then checks through its entrails for hints about the future, how is that not black?

I'm sorry, but I don't like the card.
First of all, scry is a blue (maybe white) ability.
Fateseal on the other side, is a blue (maybe black) ability.



Very interesting topic!
This is what happens when magic embraces flavor and cards are designed top-down. As the poster said above me, it is a very flavor-into-mechanics fit. It is not, just as you say, a colorwheel-into-mechanics fit. The same can be said about Form of the Dragon, a red card that gives you life.

I hope MaRo's writes a column about this sometime, whether it is more okay now for flavorful cards to break the color wheel.
I'm sorry, but I don't like the card.
First of all, scry is a blue (maybe white) ability.
Fateseal on the other side, is a blue (maybe black) ability.



From day one, Black has always gotten slightly out-of-color effects at the expense of blood. It's completely in-flavor.

The reason it's not scry >1 is that it is out of color, and free sac outlets have the potential of being broken. Potentially broken isn't necessarily bad, but it belongs at uncommon.

I love this card.
The flavor on this card is great, but I can't see it ever making the cut in even a limited deck.

Never mind "is it worth saccing a creature to Scry 1?" The question is, "Is it worth putting an otherwise worthless 1/1 into my deck so I can potentially have the opportunity to sac a creature to Scry 1?" And the answer is no.

Ah well. He has a home waiting in my Crap Cube.
About Serum Visions and Preordain, Tom said "it makes more sense... than to have to draw a random card  before I get to select my cards." But I thought that, since Serum Visions doesn't say "Draw a card. Scry 2." or "Draw a card, then Scry 2.", you could choose which order the abilities go on the stack, like with Marsh Crocodile.
I think a creature that was a 1/1 for 1 mana that had no other upside than the ability to sacrifice your own creatures would be pretty cool. The fact that you also get to scry 1 is just gravy. heap doll is a creature that I have played before and just the ability to sacrifice it has been very beneficial at times. During this time I kept wishing for a 1 cmc 1/1 that could sac creatures for free. In my mind I was hoping there was no other ability but I guess scry 1 is ok. Off the top of my head here is a list of uses for this card without considering that it also has scry 1.

In response to lightning helix and faith's fetters types of removal that will gain the opponent life. in response to hideous end types of removal that deal you damage. In response to any removal with mortician beetle in play or just triggering your own abilities like grave pact. In response to restore balance types of effects. In response to hallowed burial/path to exile if you'd rather your bloodghast or vengevine was in the graveyard. Also I can act of treason your dude and you won't get him back or if you try to act of treason my dude you suddenly find you're unable.

Anyway I just thought I'd list a couple of reasons why this guy is good regardless of the scry ability. I wouldn't be surprised if he did make it into some of the good standard tournament worthy decklists.
Don't be too smart to have fun
but would it have been overpowered to make it scry 2? especially since i'm sacrificing a whole creature.



Would it help to pretend that you just sacrificed exactly one half of your creature to scry 1? The half with organs apparently. Tongue out

I like the card, no mana mean you basically get to scry 1 each and every time one of your creatures dies (outside sacrificing it for something else). That means you get to effectively counter life draining black cards targeting creatures, mass removal now means you get to search for a good follow up card, and it has the ability to mesh nicely with token/recursion engines... etc. This offers great support to a black running combo deck.

https://plus.google.com/u/0/107006864516990804523/about

Lightning Bolt to your 3/3 dude? sac it for cardadvantage!



it's not card advantage. you'd be down a card, they'd be down a card.

I'm sorry, but I don't like the card.
First of all, scry is a blue (maybe white) ability.
Fateseal on the other side, is a blue (maybe black) ability.




From day one, Black has always gotten slightly out-of-color effects at the expense of blood. It's completely in-flavor.



QFT. you know what else is a blue ability? drawing multiple cards. oh, that's weird black seems to do that a lot, too!
About Serum Visions and Preordain, Tom said "it makes more sense... than to have to draw a random card  before I get to select my cards." But I thought that, since Serum Visions doesn't say "Draw a card. Scry 2." or "Draw a card, then Scry 2.", you could choose which order the abilities go on the stack, like with Marsh Crocodile.


the difference is that marsh crocodile is a creature but Serum Visions and Preordain are sorceries. When you play an instant or sorcery you follow all the directions on the card in the order written because the whole thing goes on the stack and it's not split apart into the different things that happen. When Marsh Crocodile enters play both its abilities trigger at the same time and 2 different abilities go on the stack. 
[21:07] [Ragnarokio] there might be more than 30 zebras after all Rag: regular mafia should be practice for white flag
I don't have anything against this card except for the pum in the flavor text. Either way, it could have been worse. But yes, Scry 2 would have been better.
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57817638 wrote:
I like storm crow because I really like crows in real life, as an animal, and the card isn't terribly stupid, but packs a good deal of nostalgia and also a chunck of the game's history. So it's perhaps one of the cards I have most affection to, but not because "lol storm crow is bad hurr hurr durr".
Listen to my SoundCloud while you read my signature. The Island, Come And See, The Landlord's Daughter, You'll Not Feel The Drowning - The Decemberists by vimschy IMAGE(http://dragcave.net/image/rkvR.gif)IMAGE(http://dragcave.net/image/L3es.gif) IMAGE(http://dragcave.net/image/m71H.gif)
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56747598 wrote:
57295478 wrote:
Although I do assume you deliberately refer to them (DCI) as The Grand Imperial Convocation of Evil just for the purposes of making them sound like an ancient and terrible conspiracy.
Now, now. 1994 doesn't quite qualify as "ancient".
56734518 wrote:
Oh, it's a brilliant plan. You see, Bolas was travelling through shadowmoor, causing trouble, when he saw a Wickerbough Elder with its stylin' dead scarecrow hat. Now, Bolas being Bolas took the awesome hat and he put it on his head, but even with all his titanic powers of magic he couldn't make it fit. He grabbed some more scarecrows, but then a little kithkin girl asked if he was trying to build a toupee. "BY ALL THE POWERS IN THE MULTIVERSE!" he roared, "I WILL HAVE A HAT WORTHY OF MY GLORY." and so he went through his Dark Lore of Doom (tm) looking for something he could make into a hat that would look as stylish on him as a scarecrow does on a treefolk. He thought about the Phyrexians, but they were covered in goopy oil that would make his nonexistant hair greasy. He Tried out angels for a while but they didn't sit quite right. Then, he looked under "e" (because in the Elder Draconic alphabet, "e" for Eldrazi is right next to "h" for Hat) in his Dark Lore of Doom and saw depictions of the Eldrazi, and all their forms. "THIS SHALL BE MY HAT!" he declared, poking a picture of Emrakul, "AND WITH IT I WILL USHER IN A NEW AGE OF DARKNESS -- ER, I MEAN A NEW AGE OF FASHION!" And so Nicol Bolas masterminded the release of the Eldrazi.
57864098 wrote:
Rhox War Monk just flips pancakes, and if games have told us anything, it's that food = life.
56747598 wrote:
76973988 wrote:
This thread has gotten creepy. XP
Really? Really? The last couple days have been roughly every perverse fetish imaginable, but it only got "creepy" when speculation on Mother of Runes's mob affiliation came up?
76672808 wrote:
57864098 wrote:
57531048 wrote:
Nice mana base. Not really.
Yeah, really. If my deck was going to cost $1000+, I'd at least make it good.
99812049 wrote:
I like to think up what I consider clever names for my decks, only later to be laughed at by my wife. It kills me a little on the inside, but thats what marriage is about.
56816728 wrote:
56854588 wrote:
Of course, the best use [of tolaria west] is transmuting for the real Tolaria. ;)
Absolutely. I used to loose to my buddy's Banding deck for ages, it was then that I found out about Tolaria, and I was finally able win my first game.
70246459 wrote:
WOAH wait wait wait
56957928 wrote:
You know, being shallow and jusdgmental aside, "I later found out that Jon infiltrated his way into OKCupid dates with at least two other people"
56957928 wrote:
"I later found out that Jon infiltrated his way into OKCupid dates with at least two other people"
56957928 wrote:
Jon infiltrated his way into OKCupid dates
56957928 wrote:
OH MY GOD
109874309 wrote:
The only way I'd cast this card is into a bonfire.
82032421 wrote:
The short answer is that there's no rule barring annoying people from posting, but there a rule barring us from harassing them about it.
56747598 wrote:
Browbeat is a card that is an appropriate deck choice when there's no better idea available. "No better idea available" was pretty much the running theme of Odyssey era.
56874518 wrote:
Or perhaps it was a more straightforward comment indicating a wish for you to be bitten (Perhaps repeatedly) by a small yet highly venomous arachnid.
70246459 wrote:
58280208 wrote:
You're an idiot, and I'm in no mood for silliness.
57817638 wrote:
57145078 wrote:
You just... Vektor it.
That's the answer to everything.
70246459 wrote:
58347268 wrote:
I think the problem is that you don't exist.
This would sound great out of context!
56965458 wrote:
Modern is like playing a new tournament every time : you build a deck, you win with it, don't bother keeping it. Just build another, its key pieces will get banned.
57864098 wrote:
57309598 wrote:
I specifically remember posting a thread when I was just a witty bitty noob.
You make it sound like that's still not the case.
58325628 wrote:
Rap is what happens when the c from crap is taken away.
Doug Beyer:
But sometimes it's also challenging. Because sometimes OH MY GOD, WHAT THE HELL IS THIS THING?
141434757 wrote:
Flashforward five thousand years (Click for atmosphere) :
57927608 wrote:
to paraphrase Jeff Goldblum, Vektor finds a way.
58347268 wrote:
when in rome **** AND PILLAGE
143229641 wrote:
I always find it helpful when im angry to dress up in an owl costume and rub pennies all over my body in front of a full body mirror next to the window.
Dymecoar:
Playing Magic without Blue is like sleeping without any sheets or blankets. You can do it...but why?
Omega137:
Me: "I love the moment when a control deck stabilizes. It feels so... right." Omega137: "I like the life drop part until you get there, it's the MtG variant of bungee jumping"
Zigeif777:
Just do it like Yu-Gi-Oh or monkeys: throw all the crap you got at them and hope it works or else the by-standers (or opponents) just get dirty and pissed.
57471038 wrote:
58258708 wrote:
It's true that Alpha and Beta didn't contain any cards like Tarmogoyf, Darksteel Colossus, or Platinum Angel. It just contained weak, insignificant cards like Black Lotus, Mox Sapphire, and Time Walk.
Normally it's difficult to pick up on your jokes/sarcasm. But this one's pretty much out there. Good progress. You have moved up to Humanoid. You'll be Human in no time.
91893448 wrote:
94618431 wrote:
I didn't know Samurai were known to be able to cut down whole armies...
They can when they're using lightsabers!
57129358 wrote:
97980259 wrote:
My wife brought home a baby black squirrel they found on a horse track and cared for it for a few days. We named it Grixis, but it died.
Unearth it!
70246459 wrote:
[/spoiler] And I'm on Magic Arcana. How about you? Oh, by the way, I'm also on From the Lab now. Twice, actually. And now with my own submited decklist!
@ factotum, TobyornotToby, Sidar_Jabari_02, IsgardTheTerrible and quitequieter

I won't quote every post and answer in general instead. So not every part is for each of you.

First of all:
I hope, everyone has read my post completely, because I tried to explain why I wrote the starting argument.

My statement:
In my opinion, scry is a positive blue ability, whereas fateseal is a negative blue ability. This means, when a planeswalker tends to white (the positive direction), he tends to be focussed about supporting the community and honoring the law. If he tends to black magic, he gets more egocentric, selfish and paranoid. Therefore, fateseal symbols the negative side better than scry.

But this was no statement about the previewed card... and the complete sacrifice effect, just a comparison between scry and fateseal.

Your statements:
Let's exaggerate it a bit: Any ability + sacrifice effect = flavorful black ability.

That's what I could read from your statements.

But this isn't true from any point of view. First, a sacrifice effect isn't a black ability. It's also red, green and even white. And if I had to arrange them, I would say: red, green, black, white.
Red, because it's the most suicidal color. Goblins with grenades are a good example. Green as the second color, because it's the natural order of hunter & prey. Black and white only if the cause is good enough. Whereas white is about self-sacrifice and devotion, black is more about 'acceptable loses'.

Therfore, if you take a frog and add a sacrifice effect, the result won't be a black card.
____________________

Another often unmentioned fact is the gameplay of a color. Whereas keywords and ability are one side of the medal, the general gameplay is the other side - as important as the first fact.
And if you look at the black mages, the gameplay is focused around disrupting your opponent and focussing on your strength. In general, the earning is huge, but the costs too.

Therefore, black uses more discard than draw effects, more creature destruction spells than own-creature-pump, more graveyard-returnal than search or draw effects.

As you can see, a creature with a scry effect doesn't fit as much as a creature with fateseal.

In addition, black isn't the color with a lot of tokens or cheap creatures, so a sacrifice effect should create a huge effect. +2/+2 per creature is a good example => twice as powerful as the shade-ability. Black wouldn't concentrate on unstable topdeck effects (like scry)... this doesn't sound very power-centric. It would rather sacrifice more creatures for a direct search ablitiy.

Last but not least, black uses draw+pay_life effects in combination and therefore scry feels like a forced monocolored theme that should stay dual-colored.

As a result, I still think, this card is a mere 2 of 5 for flavor.
Of course I can find a plausible argument for this card being black, but the same would be true for red, green or white. This doesn't increase the rating...

@ Vampire:
Vampires are a complete sesaster as a major tribal theme. How can you combine so many - sometimes contradictionary abilities - and call it a tribe. I would have rather liked the good old 4th Ed. combo with Sengir Vampire + Nettling Imp... And this card doesn't make it a better tribe.

@ Form of the Dragon & life gain:
Form of the Dragon isn't a good example. It's a gimmick card that doesn't really fit into the game. If you would become a creature - as the card tries to do - this would cause other problems. How can a creature be attacked on purpose, what's about destruction spells. What's about creature enchantments or 'loses flying' spells. The list is endless.

For the 'gain life' effect, you've hit a very interesting point. First, this isn't direct life-gain and therefore it's neither typical green or white. Second, in my opinion, every color should have some sort of life-centric effects. The reason is simple. There are some fundamental facts about the game:

  • You draw cards

  • you need mana to play them (mainly lands)

  • you try to get your opponent down to 0 life (mainly creatures)


Therefore every color should have cards that circle around these basic facts.

For the draw effect: Every player - no matter which color he plays, draws a card at the beginning of his or her draw step. In addition, any color should have effects with a focus on that. It doesn't have to be the cantrips or direct draw, but instead, it's a good example that black uses discard effects. This is the opposite effect, that might grant card advantage. Blue uses draw manipulation - like scry. This doesn't grant a direct card advantage, but prevents 'lost draws' with useless cards.

In my opinion, white should gain direct draw effects, green should get 'guess & play the top card'-intuition-like effect and red should get something like Windfall, Wheel of Fortune or flashback to generate a card advantage.

For the required mana, this means that any color should have mana acceleration... in different ways of course. Green should use untap effects and static mana, red should get 'play multiple lands per turn', Dark Ritual like effects, mana cost reduction and land destruction, black should get the Llanowar Elves (creature-centric), 'gain control of target land' and land usage denial, blue should get artificial mana, 'search for a land card' spells, mana cost increase and 'lands don't untap' effects; white should get auras like Wild Growth and enchantments.

And finally life gain. Black already has Drain Life effects and should be the main color for lifelink. White on the other side should get damage prevention and static life-gain. Green should get regeneration like effects or massive life per card effects (to symbol the high toughness too). Blue and red are a bit difficult, but blue already has a focus on -X/-0 effects - which is similar to damage prevention. Therefore they should get more effects focusing on the prevention of lifeloss, alter the targets for life gain and so on. Red on the other side, should get more effects like a rage, where you can't die until a trigger happens. Cards like Worship could symbol that.

@ Black card drawing
Any color can draw cards. Many colors can draw multiple cards per spell. What is meant here is the alternative cost to reduce the casting cost of the spell. However, this doesn't mean that black (should) use(s) everything ... if / when an additional sacrifice or 'pay life' effect is also included.
This only symbols the pay a price for more power. But when it is possible, black should still focus on black abilities.



But this isn't true from any point of view. First, a sacrifice effect isn't a black ability. It's also red, green and even white. And if I had to arrange them, I would say: red, green, black, white.
Red, because it's the most suicidal color. Goblins with grenades are a good example. Green as the second color, because it's the natural order of hunter & prey. Black and white only if the cause is good enough. Whereas white is about self-sacrifice and devotion, black is more about 'acceptable loses'.


I did a quick Gatherer search for monocolored cards containing "sacrifice a creature".  The results:

White: 8
Blue: 4
Black: 82
Red: 15
Green: 10

@ Form of the Dragon & life gain:
Form of the Dragon isn't a good example. It's a gimmick card that doesn't really fit into the game. If you would become a creature - as the card tries to do - this would cause other problems. How can a creature be attacked on purpose, what's about destruction spells. What's about creature enchantments or 'loses flying' spells. The list is endless.


The text box on a Magic card is only so big.  It would take a huge amount of rules text to make every possible interaction make sense.  That doesn't mean that top-down designs shouldn't exist.
Form of the Dragon isn't a good example. It's a gimmick card that doesn't really fit into the game.



Alright, how about Entangling Vines, the poster child of M10 that ditches the color wheel for a top-down design?

Therfore, if you take a frog and add a sacrifice effect, the result won't be a black card.



Morgue Toad =) Sorry that was funny


I fully agree btw that Fateseal would be a better fit for black and for this card than Scry. However, I also like what Lorwyn did to creature types, and MaRo did to evergreen keywords: assigning each of them a secondary color. Black has fateseal as a primary ability, but could get Scry as a secondary. The black/blue overlap is about library manipulation (look at Dimir)
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