9/13/2010 Feature: "Returning to Mirrodin"

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This thread is for discussion of this week's Feature Article, which goes live Monday morning on magicthegathering.com.
Excellent look at the art for the set. Very exciting.

It is great to see the goblins (probably the most homogenous race in the history of Magic) get a make-over.

I really like the idea of blurring the line between metal and flesh for the Phyrexian cards. I remember from the books that Mishra and Urza were intially unable to tell that the Phyrexian creatures were mechanical because they looked so life-like, such was the Phyrexians' skill with artifice. Sorry, nerd-break. Anyway, it's good to see you paid attention to the lore.

Now from an art/lore stand-point can someone explain the 'Platinum' creatures? On a plane full of metal, why are they so damn special and how did the platinum get there in the first place?

Now from an art/lore stand-point can someone explain the 'Platinum' creatures? On a plane full of metal, why are they so damn special and how did the platinum get there in the first place?



They already had gold, silver, iron, copper, and lead, elements found on Earth.  Obviously platinum was a metallic element that also existed on Mirrodin.  Also, platinum was determined in magic to have a very strong effect.  I wouldn't know why.
IMAGE(http://pwp.wizards.com/1205820039/Scorecards/Landscape.png)
I'm pretty much in love with every piece Chippy does.
The end of this article came really abruptly; for a moment I thought my browser had cut off the bottom paragraph or something.

The art looks great; I was wondering about those altered goblin visuals.

Come join me at No Goblins Allowed


Because frankly, being here depresses me these days.

Way to not finish your article, Jarvis.  You needed a closer line, even if it was just some pabulum like "I think you guys are going to really love what we came up with".

The new vampires are odd, but I'm okay with them, and I like what they're doing with the humans (notably the Auriok - that Igor Kierlyuk piece is gorgeous).  I'm nervous about the idea of "bruiser" vedalken, though; that's totally missing the point of what Vedalken are.  For that matter, I'm not too happy about them losing the second pair of arms and the serum tank over the head.

And Goblins?  First off, I'm sick of all goblins, but if we had to have goblins, I do not like the redesign at all.  They look more like gremlins or something.  Furthermore, it seems that they're doing the traditional stupid, aggressive, incompetent goblin thing just like in every block - when Mirrodin is exactly the place where goblins are supposed to be *smart*, mechanically aligned and ingenious tinkerers akin to those seen in Warcraft.  Remember Slobad?  It's true that they breed quickly and thus could evolve in a fairly short space of time, but unless they've stopped with the forge-worship in Kuldotha, I don't know why they'd have gotten stupider.  Honestly, when I first heard that we were returning to Mirrodin and doing artifacts again, I hoped it meant we'd get Steamflogger Boss and a whole theme of Goblins building Contraptions.  (Along with Darksteel Garrison - I'm deeply disappointed by the lack of that as well, as fortify would have been a fairly simple innovation and would create cross-block synergy with the fun lands of Zendikar.)

I am a fan of the new Phyrexian look, though.  And while the neurok still look pretty much the same to me, I don't really mind.  I honestly never noticed that the elves were bald before, but now I'm sad that won't be true; making all elves have no hair at all would be neat, as then we wouldn't have to assume they're even mammals, and they would seem more unearthly and ethereal.  The women would still be hot even as chrome-domes, I have no doubt.   (And there are various answers to the issue of breasts which I won't get into.)

I'd love to be able to read those notes scrawled on the vampire sketches.
My New Phyrexia Writing Credits My M12 Writing Credits
As far as the benefit of the rest of Magic is concerned, gold cards in Legends were executed perfectly. They got all the excitement a designer could hope out of a splashy new mechanic without using up any of the valuable design space. Truly amazing. --Aaron Forsythe's Random Card Comment on Kei Takahashi
Way to not finish your article, Jarvis.  You needed a closer line, even if it was just some pabulum like "I think you guys are going to really love what we came up with".



Seconded, or, how about something like: "Now that I've told you about some of the Process involved in Concepting Artwork for the set, here's today's pre-view card...".

I mean it's Monday, the first day of the second week of Pre-Views, the main article of the day, and we don't get a pre-view card??

What's up with that?

Well there's lots of preview art, and of course a bunch of cards went up on the visual spoiler (still only 5 white and 3 red, but fair numbers of blue, black, and artifacts).  So it's not surprising that they're saving up the preview cards.  We should get 2-4 over the next two days, almost certainly 2 on Thursday, and 1 or 2 on Friday, plus various others being sneaked out on other sites and eventually collated in the VS.  The usual.
My New Phyrexia Writing Credits My M12 Writing Credits
As far as the benefit of the rest of Magic is concerned, gold cards in Legends were executed perfectly. They got all the excitement a designer could hope out of a splashy new mechanic without using up any of the valuable design space. Truly amazing. --Aaron Forsythe's Random Card Comment on Kei Takahashi
@willpell

We still have two more sets after Scars.  Nothing says that Darksteel Garrison won't return in one of those.  Fortify seems like a mechanic that might be in Mirrodin Besieged.
IMAGE(http://pwp.wizards.com/1205820039/Scorecards/Landscape.png)
Lightning Greaves ... was never awesome

This is so not true! I've probably put that card in more decks than any other card except basic land!
I love the "goblin as bulldog" visual redesign.  Partly because I imagine the average goblin to be only slightly smarter than the neighbor's French Bulldog.

I don't remember something from Mirrodin about those goblins being smart tinkerers, and I paid pretty close attention at the time.
The end of this article came really abruptly; for a moment I thought my browser had cut off the bottom paragraph or something.



Yeah, I just did the same thing and came to the discussion forum to see what was going on.

Usually get some kind of "until next time" or "and that's it for this look" kinda close.

Either way, all the artists working on this still are incredible.
@willpell

We still have two more sets after Scars. Nothing says that Darksteel Garrison won't return in one of those. Fortify seems like a mechanic that might be in Mirrodin Besieged.



I hope you're right.  But it seems like the kind of thing that will crowd a small set, and plus it will delay the Zendikombo madness.

Lightning Greaves ... was never awesome

This is so not true! I've probably put that card in more decks than any other card except basic land!



He was speaking in strictly artistic terms, what with him being an artist.  You got to admit, the "Lion-tning" Greaves idea was kinda dumb.  They should have looked like the Flash's boots (only "fantasy", duh), with actual lightning leaping from them as a guy speeds across the frame

I love the "goblin as bulldog" visual redesign. Partly because I imagine the average goblin to be only slightly smarter than the neighbor's French Bulldog.

I don't remember something from Mirrodin about those goblins being smart tinkerers, and I paid pretty close attention at the time.



What I suspect happened is that someone decided Mirrodin would have smart goblins, and someone else decided to keep with the popular "Thog hit big man with rock" model.  Thusly we have the flavor text of Goblin Striker at odds with the rather articulate Slobad, Goblin Tinkerer in the novels, due to either a miscommunication, poor timing, or multiple parties not agreeing and someone (probably Brand, I find it convenient to blame them for anyplace the game was made stupider) pulling rank to get their version but not policing the product to remove all references to the other.

Fun Willpell fact - the first and only time I've gotten into print (to my knowledge) so far is with a submission to Inquest's "Cards that will Never Be" column, in which I submitted the Star Wars themed Mirrodin remakes "Geth Sidious" and "Sobad, Gungan Tinkerer".  It was also back then that I got on these forums for the first time and wrote my "The Flavor of Equipment" posts.  Ah, thems was the dayses, ayup.
My New Phyrexia Writing Credits My M12 Writing Credits
As far as the benefit of the rest of Magic is concerned, gold cards in Legends were executed perfectly. They got all the excitement a designer could hope out of a splashy new mechanic without using up any of the valuable design space. Truly amazing. --Aaron Forsythe's Random Card Comment on Kei Takahashi
What I suspect happened is that someone decided Mirrodin would have smart goblins, and someone else decided to keep with the popular "Thog hit big man with rock" model.  Thusly we have the flavor text of Goblin Striker at odds with the rather articulate Slobad, Goblin Tinkerer in the novels, due to either a miscommunication, poor timing, or multiple parties not agreeing and someone (probably Brand, I find it convenient to blame them for anyplace the game was made stupider) pulling rank to get their version but not policing the product to remove all references to the other.



Or they've got both; there's no reason all the goblins have to be intelligent, even among humans there are idiots (something about that sounds like an undertsatement ^^;).  Maybe the stupid goblins tend towards the 'Thog' model even in mirrodin.

What I suspect happened is that someone decided Mirrodin would have smart goblins, and someone else decided to keep with the popular "Thog hit big man with rock" model.  Thusly we have the flavor text of Goblin Striker at odds with the rather articulate Slobad, Goblin Tinkerer in the novels, due to either a miscommunication, poor timing, or multiple parties not agreeing and someone (probably Brand, I find it convenient to blame them for anyplace the game was made stupider) pulling rank to get their version but not policing the product to remove all references to the other.

Fun Willpell fact - the first and only time I've gotten into print (to my knowledge) so far is with a submission to Inquest's "Cards that will Never Be" column, in which I submitted the Star Wars themed Mirrodin remakes "Geth Sidious" and "Sobad, Gungan Tinkerer".  It was also back then that I got on these forums for the first time and wrote my "The Flavor of Equipment" posts.  Ah, thems was the dayses, ayup.



Uh... I highly doubt that happened.  You may want to actually read slobad's flavor text since you linked the card.  She's joking with him that he was exiled for being too smart... he never laughed because there was truth in it.  In other words he was smarter than other goblins and they were afraid of him or something like that, I didn't read the novels.  He's the exception not the rule.

I like having vedalken ditch the serum tanks and I'm pretty sure they are keeping the arms.

largely because I feel that each color should have a non-human race able to support more fanservicey cards.

Leonin and elves have been able to do that in the original block, but now with low-power vampires and less armored vedalken, blue and black get some love in this manner.

Red.... neither the default gobos or the new Mirrodin gobos can do that, and I'm not sure what the secondary non-human race for is in the mirrodin black
@willpell

Uhm...since when did they lose teh helmets and arms?

There are vedalken and then there are the humans like Trinket mage...

Note the Vedalken in Steady Progress...4 arms.



1. And Goblins?  First off, I'm sick of all goblins, but if we had to have goblins, I do not like the redesign at all.  They look more like gremlins or something.  Furthermore, it seems that they're doing the traditional stupid, aggressive, incompetent goblin thing just like in every block - when Mirrodin is exactly the place where goblins are supposed to be *smart*, mechanically aligned and ingenious tinkerers akin to those seen in Warcraft.  Remember Slobad?  It's true that they breed quickly and thus could evolve in a fairly short space of time, but unless they've stopped with the forge-worship in Kuldotha, I don't know why they'd have gotten stupider. 


2. Honestly, when I first heard that we were returning to Mirrodin and doing artifacts again, I hoped it meant we'd get Steamflogger Boss and a whole theme of Goblins building Contraptions. 

3. (Along with Darksteel Garrison - I'm deeply disappointed by the lack of that as well, as fortify would have been a fairly simple innovation and would create cross-block synergy with the fun lands of Zendikar.)




(I numbered your points for my reference)

1. I generally agree with the overuse of goblins, and I generally dislike when they "reshape" them for a particular plane, but this time I think they got it. Something about this go-around feels like they actually captured what goblins that live on a metal world would look like. I can't put it into any better words than that, it's just a "feeling" kind of thing. 

2. You know, of all the things they hinted at in Future Sight, this one really seems to get the most traction. I think they seriously need to consider making a go of it. It is disappointing to see opportunities like this come up and not get used.

3. Same as 2, and definitely would have helped with the "land matters" theme that we didn't get (instead, we got "playing lands matters"). 







Proud member of C.A.R.D. - Campaign Against Rare Duals "...but the time has come when lands just need to be better. Creatures have gotten stronger, spells have always been insane, and lands just sat in this awkward place of necessity." Jacob Van Lunen on the refuge duals, 16 Sep 2009. "While it made thematic sense to separate enemy and allied color fixing in the past, we have come around to the definite conclusion that it is just plain incorrect from a game-play perspective. This is one of these situations where game play should just trump flavor." - Sam Stoddard on ending the separation of allied/enemy dual lands. 05 July 2013
I think it's dissapointing the Goblins got a new look...so far I'm not impressed.

I like the smart goblins...like Krark-Clan Engineers!
Fear Of The Dark, Fear Of The Dark, I Have A Constant Fear That Something's Always Near; Fear Of The Dark, Fear Of The Dark, I Have A Phobia That Someone's Always There- Iron Maiden Fear of the Dark shall be feared no longer! Let him be praised instead! (Many, many thanks for all your hard work!) - darkwarlock I am Red/Green
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Also, does the picture of the guy holding the dying woman remind anyone else of Roy holding Pris towards the end of BladeRunner? 
Proud member of C.A.R.D. - Campaign Against Rare Duals "...but the time has come when lands just need to be better. Creatures have gotten stronger, spells have always been insane, and lands just sat in this awkward place of necessity." Jacob Van Lunen on the refuge duals, 16 Sep 2009. "While it made thematic sense to separate enemy and allied color fixing in the past, we have come around to the definite conclusion that it is just plain incorrect from a game-play perspective. This is one of these situations where game play should just trump flavor." - Sam Stoddard on ending the separation of allied/enemy dual lands. 05 July 2013
I just love how Jeremy Jarvis casually mentions... "we weren't sure ppl will know how to draw the new goblins, so Chippy sculpted one". Man, Chippy is insane.
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I just love how Jeremy Jarvis casually mentions... "we weren't sure ppl will know how to draw the new goblins, so Chippy sculpted one". Man, Chippy is insane.

I consider him to be the best Magic artist.
I can't deslike any piece he does.
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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".
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Quotes
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!
I was mistaken about the vedalken - the serum helmets are gone and their faces are less withered and fishy-looking, but they do still have four arms which makes me very happy.  Ravnica's blue humanoids were rather disappointing to me in that regard.

Vampires as the fantasy race works for me, although I strongly suspect that it's mostly been done as a marketing tie-in to the age of Twilight fever.  Still, they're managing to have some fun with it.  I wonder if we'll get a card of Yert, the secondary progenitor of the new vampire race?
My New Phyrexia Writing Credits My M12 Writing Credits
As far as the benefit of the rest of Magic is concerned, gold cards in Legends were executed perfectly. They got all the excitement a designer could hope out of a splashy new mechanic without using up any of the valuable design space. Truly amazing. --Aaron Forsythe's Random Card Comment on Kei Takahashi
Why is this article no longer listed in the features archive?

I tried to get caught up on old articles and didn't find out about this one until it got linked to in another forum! 
"We will all be purified in Wurm. What is good will be used to heal Wurm, or grow Wurm, or to fuel Wurm's path. What is vile will be extruded, and we will be free of it forever." --Prophet of the Cult of Wurm
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