10/24/2011 Feature Article: "The Cursed Blade"

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This thread is for discussion of this week's Feature Article, which goes live Monday morning on magicthegathering.com.

While i appreciate the nod to Epistolary novels like Dracula, I couldn't bring myself to read this entire article. Its difficult, to say the least, to hook a reader with such rapidly shifting points of view. Maybe if it hadn't been so prohibitively long...
Not to mention "scriptlike" fonts that are nigh-unreadable.  The story is entertaining, but not very accessable.
welcome to the future
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This was an absolutely amazing story. Thanks to the writers.
"Under my sword, those who would oppose us will paint the ground red."

I have this amusing image of Thatu's victims turning into Thraximundar.
While i appreciate the nod to Epistolary novels like Dracula, I couldn't bring myself to read this entire article. Its difficult, to say the least, to hook a reader with such rapidly shifting points of view. Maybe if it hadn't been so prohibitively long...



The letters have been compiled in chronological order at this site. It was confusing at first, given the number of characters involved, but as their names grow familiar, the tale becomes very compelling. I enjoyed it tremendously, and would love to see an Innistrad novel based on this plot.

Or, at the very least, a double-sided card for Raben/Amsel. Laughing

Glad you liked it! :D

We had a blast writing it.  I agree it's a bit long in this format, just keep in mind as originally released it was only a couple of bits per day.  

Thanks for following along, I hope I can do more of these in the future!

 
Ryan Miller Game Designer Wizards of the Coast
I love both the flavor of the story and the fact that it now has a complete archive. Some people didn't get those mailed letters, and others like myself have missed a lot of the emails. I was afraid I would never be able to get to see the story in its entirety, so I'm very glad you guys did this!

Can we expect the same thing for Dark Ascension?
This was riveting.  I was glued to my seat as I read the entire story, piece by fascinating piece.  Incredible job!

I look forward to more of these.
The story was impressive, i look forward for more of these articles, maybe a little images could have made this article better, nonetheless it´s a good work, other thing I like is that it was released on weekend and i don´t have the need to read it on work, Smile.





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I really liked this! Nice job Wizards! I can't find out where to buy MTG books around here, so seeing storyline stuff online really is great.
I do have a question though, this article looks like it may be halfway finished and it's dated for Monday the 24. Why is that?
I really like Innistrad and its setting and this story fits really nicely and its really enjoyable
Just some wield speculation here, could something(s) from this story be in Dark Acension? 
Great story, great work. This is what i call flavor
This is by far the best thing I have ever read. When my roommate and I discovered this a few weeks ago we stayed up for hours trying to solve the mystery and discover more of the story. I found a random like that led to the twitter page first, and from there everything spiraled out of control.

The depth of these characters is breathtaking, and reaches a beauty rarely experiences. Every character has a story, every character has a heart, a soul. Even the lowly bleeding corpse has a backstory, and in the end you are left pitying him as he desperately tries to prove the worth of his love.

As I neared the end of this story my heart was nervously fluttering and I found myself actually worrying for the characters.  I felt Holger's regret and pain for his family, and I could feel myself being overcome with the depravity of Raben's situation. 

I can honestly say that when the story ended, when everything was over and Amsel said his last words, I had chills going down my spine.


So I thank you for giving us this story, and for making the entire thing so vivid. I can only hope that some of these beloved characters become cards of their own. Or, in the very least, you make some merch for us to buy. I would gladly where a Raben or Holger shirt, even sporting my love of the deranged twins would be worth buying. 
Raben's tale is decent at the very least and I very much enjoyed the collection. I admit to not even attempting to follow along the original delivery, instead waiting for the inevitable collection.  I was not disappointed.

That said, the hand-written bits were a bit difficult at times.
Quite a neat story; Raben is my kind of guy, and I liked Geralf and Elder too.
Unfortunately I can't read most of the scripted postcards; any chance of a plaintext transcription?  (You could make the postcards transform!)
Oh, and I got my wish; someone was named "Mauer" in this setting.  Not a very important someone, but it'll do.
Thanks for this neat little addition to the canon.  I just wish I could afford to buy stupid numbers of cards to reward you for your well-invested effort in making Innistrad awesome.  At the very least I shall watch for the novel with great anticipation.
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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
I enjoyed this story, which I read for the first time today. I am glad you collated it, as although I knew about the ongoing twitter feed I didn't follow it. I get that progressive revelations are a good way to use a story like this to build interest in a set, but I don't like having to keep checking for updates, re-familiarising myself with the story each time.

I had the same issue with the Mirrodin mini-site, which was even more problematic - "New stuff on the site? Great, now how do I quickly differentiate it from all the old stuff I don't want to read? I can't? Well, guess I wont bother then. Shame, this could be interesting but sifting wheat from chaff will take too much time for too little reward."

As I said, though, I loved the story and I have no problem coming late to the party (let the scavenger hunters and ARG fans have their fun). I am glad that you told the story in the style of Dracula; I thought that was a nice touch and well executed. More short fiction on the website please!

Finally, I loved Gisa and Geralf, and hope that some of this will feed into cards in Dark Ascension.
I was a little unsure about it at first, but the story drew me in over time, and I couldn't put it down until it was done.  Bravo!
This was an exceptional effort and a rewarding read. Things like this just exponentially increase the enjoyment I get out of a set. Superbly done!
I'm having trouble reading the large all caps script word on the very first piece of parchment at the top of the page:

None may lay eyes on the

HEL?A?L?

without my leave.

Order of Mikaeus

I got the 'H' from the bounty poster offering 500 for a 'Human Head', I got the 'L' from the same poster asking for the pelt of a 'WEREWOLF'. I got the 'E' and the 'A' from the 'REWARD' posters.

I can't find anything that matches the symbol for the first ?; it looks like a 'G' to me but I have no proof.  At first I thought the second ? was a 'D', but it doesn't match the script in the word REWARD (I also know it's not a 'P'-Reika the Peddler; or an 'O'-Order of Mikaeus).  The last ? I suspect is a 'T', but I have nothing to compare it to.

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From Mark Rosewater's Tumblr: the0uroboros asked: How in the same set can we have a hexproof, unsacrificable(not a word) creature AND a land that makes it uncounterable. How does this lead to interactive play? I believe I’m able to play my creature and you have to deal with it is much more interactive than you counter my creature.

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Post #777

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MaRo: One of the classic R&D stories happened during a Scars of Mirrodin draft. Erik Lauer was sitting to my right (meaning that he passed to me in the first and third packs). At the end of the draft, Erik was upset because I was in his colors (black-green). He said, "Didn't you see the signals? I went into black-green in pack one." I replied, "Didn't you see my signals? I started drafting infect six drafts ago."

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MaRo: I redesigned him while the effect was on the stack.

I'm having trouble reading the large all caps script word on the very first piece of parchment at the top of the page:

None may lay eyes on the

HEL?A?L?

without my leave.

Order of Mikaeus

I got the 'H' from the bounty poster offering 500 for a 'Human Head', I got the 'L' from the same poster asking for the pelt of a 'WEREWOLF'. I got the 'E' and the 'A' from the 'REWARD' posters.

I can't find anything that matches the symbol for the first ?; it looks like a 'G' to me but I have no proof.  At first I thought the second ? was a 'D', but it doesn't match the script in the word REWARD (I also know it's not a 'P'-Reika the Peddler; or an 'O'-Order of Mikaeus).  The last ? I suspect is a 'T', but I have nothing to compare it to.



I believe it is 'HELVAULT'
Susan Summerson from the Hell breaks loose Flavorful Voting Game http://community.wizards.com/go/thread/view/75842/29076567/Hell_breaking_loose:_an_Avacyn_Restored_voting_game?pg=1 Click here for more Forum Games:
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Susan Summerson also appeared in the Innistrad Mafia Game http://community.wizards.com/go/thread/view/75842/28609371/Innistrad_Mafia?pg=1 Writer of Nally Bear from The Gathering Flavorful Voting Game: http://community.wizards.com/go/thread/view/75842/28846821/The_Gathering:_M12_flavorful_voting_game?pg=1 Writer of Phyrex the Myr from Phyrexia Reborn: http://community.wizards.com/go/thread/view/75842/27993097/Phyrexia_Reborn:_A_Flavorful_Voting_Game?pg=1 Writer of Tinker the Myr from Legacy of Karn: http://community.wizards.com/go/thread/view/75842/26647005/Karns_Legacy_(A_flavorful_voting_game) Writer of Crusader Tolkana, who has appeared in: Eldrazi Awaken: http://community.wizards.com/go/thread/view/75842/24071149/Eldrazi_Awaken:_A_flavorful_voting_game?pg=1 Colors of Magic: http://community.wizards.com/go/thread/view/75842/25352501/Colors_of_Magic:_a_flavor_game?pg=1 Guildwars III: http://community.wizards.com/go/thread/view/75842/26082093/Guildwars_III:_Shattered_Pact_(A_flavorful_voting_game)?pg=1 Writer of Isaic from Treasures of Zendikar http://community.wizards.com/go/thread/view/75842/22819881/Treasures_of_Zendikar?post_id=402182877#402182877
Very well done.  This has inspired me to run a DnD campaign set in Innistrad at some point! LOL
Terrific story. Something like this should be written for every set; the background of the plane is fascinating.

I don't post much anymore. 

My god, that was beautiful. I've always been a fan of star-crossed lovers, but this was a stunning piece of tragedy. I agree with those who are saying that it's format doesn't make it easy to read, but, for me at least, the need to go back and re-read certain parts increased my investment and immersion in the story. Then again, I have read other stories in roughly this format, so I have gotten used to it somewhat.
Fascinating story, I enjoyed it profusely. I really hope some of the characters from this story make there way onto cards later in the block, a lengendary double faced Raben would be sweet, also Gisa and Geralf cards would be awesome. Thank you and good job.
This thread is for discussion of this week's Feature Article, which goes live Monday morning on magicthegathering.com.


Thank you for this great read! I found myself quickly drawn to the mystery and the characters!  One of the best reads I've had in a while!  I hope we can get to see more of them.

Btw, if you want someone to translate the script to spanish, I'm more than willing to do so.  I'm capable of translating it while still keeping its poetic and mysterious vibe.
An excellent story.  Well done.
Awesome story. I loved the character of Raben. The format definitely reminded me of Dracula, in a very good way.
I loved this story. Its definately one of the best peices of fantasy writing I've read in a long time. I simply love Innistrad as a setting because of how the real world elements are interwoven with the fantastic. There are some truly stunning passages of Literary merit - like the end, or when Reika talks about being alone and agnostic even though the angels fly over head, or when Raben questions whether there is an Avacyn. The story is also an engrossing read, and it has the right mix of humor (Gisa and Geralf had me rolling on the floor), mystery (every time I read the first message talking about K.R's wife I am fascinated) darkness, and inspiration.

Thank you so much for posting this.  
YMtC
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A great read.  Raben may be awesome, but Holger easily became my favorite character from the compilation.  Wondering if Geralf and Gisa's father will become important later.  I hope there's something similar to this for Dark Ascension!
I have no idea how to express my appreciation other than to say the story, characters, and story-telling were all fantastic.  I was rivited to my seat and can't wait for more.  (There is more, right?!?!)

Thanks for compiling it all at the end.  I followed along while I could, but fell behind near the end and just finished up now.  Wow.  The story had much more emotional impact than I reckoned.
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I had the same issue with the Mirrodin mini-site, which was even more problematic - "New stuff on the site? Great, now how do I quickly differentiate it from all the old stuff I don't want to read? I can't? Well, guess I wont bother then. Shame, this could be interesting but sifting wheat from chaff will take too much time for too little reward."



I had that problem too.  The minisite just wasn't worth how much trouble my old computer/browser had handling it.  Should have been less about "exploring" and more about "here's the actual content".
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
Wow.
I intially wrote this stuff off as some Wizards' promotional chaff, that would be a cute time-waster, but this was... gripping. Read the whole thing without stopping. Now I'm hungry and thirsty.