01/09/2011 MM: "Dancing in The Dark Ascension, Part 1"

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This thread is for discussion of this week's Making Magic, which goes live Monday morning on magicthegathering.com.
I literally shouted at my computer "Just use Mind Control!"

Well, there was some profanity too.

For something as anticipated as non-creature DFC? I am severely disappointed. 
On the CO IRC, generally as TorpedoFish.
Vain? Me? NEVER.
57223408 wrote:
You're the straightest shooter I know on these boards. You don't mince words about your opinions, and I respect that about you. The whole fiasco you described in the last State of the CO Forum was particularly enlightening (and kind of disappointing with regards to how they see us).
56868168 wrote:
Ah, Tsuyo. When your post isn't one sentence long full of asterisks, you have much wisdom to share with us .
From the IRC:
(19:52) RuinsFate: You know, I was gonna agree with something PalOn said... but I think I'm just gonna through my lot in with tsuyo's sudden train-wreck grade interjection. (01:45) Nausicaa: yes your rage is a righteous rage :D (01:45) Nausicaa: righteous rage of torpedo
My sci-fi writing.
You know, this very much reminds me of the Licids.  This could be a possible way to bring them back.  I always thought they had a good niche.
You know, this very much reminds me of the Licids.  This could be a possible way to bring them back.  I always thought they had a good niche.

They'd have to be something else.  Errata'ing an existing card to suddenly be a DFC would be a nightmare.
Additionally, there's a very real possibility DFCs will disappear after this block, and not be seen again until someone gets the idea to try a Timespiral/Chronicles thing again.

Thalakos Deceiver rides again!


RE: licids. I think DFC is the best way available today to do it. If an enchantment block came around, they should definately consider it, as it would be a good way to insert more auras without taking away from creatures.  

"Ah, the age-old conundrum. Defenders of a game are too blind to see it's broken, and critics are too idiotic to see that it isn't." - Brian McCormick

This card's design was clearly top down. We were trying to come up with ghost tropes and an obvious one was possession. We talked about a creature that could sacrifice to gain control of anything it damaged, but once we remembered we had DFC technology, we realized there was a better way.

The earliest version of this card required the creature to get into combat with the creature it took control of as we were trying to match the flavor as close as possible. What we found, though, was that the opponent just didn't block with anything you wanted to steal. Also, because it flew for flavor reasons, it was much harder to get things to block it. Defensively, it kept the opponent from attacking, which never leads to a good game state.



No, Mark, you re-did Dominating Licid. Maybe someone topped-down a card, but this is a Licid, and will have just as much rules issues with it as Licids do. Also, your other version of "ghost haunts person" was done with Cloistered Youth, only now you've just blended that with Thalakos Deceiver. Really top-down (/snark).

"Possibilities abound, too numerous to count." "Innocent, unbiased observation is a myth." --- P.B. Medawar (1969) "Ever since man first left his cave and met a stranger with a different language and a new way of looking at things, the human race has had a dream: to kill him, so we don't have to learn his language or his new way of looking at things." --- Zapp Brannigan (Beast With a Billion Backs)
Yeah, I wasn't too impressed by Soul Seizer, either.  It's not that it's way worse than Mind Control (which it is), but that its creature form is just too weak given its cost.  If your opponent has almost anything bigger than a 1- or 2-drop, you're almost always going to flip this guy if it hits.  I think that if they'd made it a 2/3 instead, then the choice of whether to flip or not becomes way more interesting.
I had a very specific, and painfully worded, thought enter my mind when I saw this card:

"Render unto Siezer that which is Seizer's."
At the very least, thanks for letting me know ahead of time that I'll likely end up sitting out yet another underwheling set.
To me the most interesting line was the one where he mentioned casually in one sentence that we weren't getting any DFCs in Avacyn Restored. I mean, I know they're pretty divisive, but that means Werewolves have this set, and that is it. Seven more werewolves, and then no more for a very long time. They better have made them count, but the line about the fronts not being that good does not fill me with hope.

And yeah, Soul Seizer is boring. As one of very few flip cards, it could do a better job of being interesting. 
Immature College Student (Also a Rules Advisor)
Well, I like the card!  For all that it should cost 4 mana to actually be played.  But oh well.  Nice artwork, and far better flavor than some of the other cards mentioned - a Thalakos guy walks through the shadows and deceives your troops into switching sides, or something.  Spirit possession is a better expression of this, and also explains why the creature itself vanishes (unlike the Deceiver).
I had a very specific, and painfully worded, thought enter my mind when I saw this card:

"Render unto Siezer that which is Seizer's."


[Applause] You just redeemed the card.

If you're on MTGO check out the Free Events via PDCMagic and Gatherling.

Other games you should try:
DC Universe Online - action-based MMO.  Free to play.  Surprisingly well-designed combat and classes.

Planetside 2 - Free to play MMO-meets-FPS and the first shooter I've liked in ages.
Simunomics - Free-to-play economy simulation game.

The third set usually has some twist or turn to it; something always happens in the third act. The second act, though, is about continuing down the path set up by the first act.  ...If you study story, you will find that the second act is all about watching things get worse for the protagonist(s).


Correction, Mark - if you study formulaic, cliche story you find that.  Millions of such stories have been done, and their impact has been watered down to almost nothing.  The audience expects this sort of thing and is easily bored unless something really special is happening.  You should strongly consider shaking it up sometimes.  Have a story with a second-act twist which is developed further in the fhird act, ending with unresolved tension that makes players want to come back later.  (Avacyn is found dead in act 2, and act 3 shows the repercussions of the Innistradians learning that they truly have no hope.)  Have a story with a second-act twist and then a third-act re-twist, creating something completely strange and different which will be memorable enough to get talked about for years.  (Avacyn is killed by Gristlebrand who in turn is killed by Liliana in act 2, then in act 3 the Eldrazi invade Innistrad and Liliana finds herself needing to defend her new prize.)   Have a story with no twists whatsoever, one so rich and vibrant that it needs no shock value to succeed - show a plane being awesome, then being more awesome, then being still more awesome after that, all with no narrative progress at all.  (Avacyn never comes back, but the people of Innistrad rise to the occasion, embrace once-forbidden technologies, successfully push back the darkness and build a mighty and progressive civilization, which the vampires and werewolves then must negotiate with for land rights and trade equity and such, or else it'll be their own survival which is threatened.)  There's absolutely nothing wrong with this.  Get out of your rut and enjoy pure innovation sometime.


Whatever the problem is that first popped up at the end of the first act just keeps getting more complicated. Solutions slowly get stripped away as more and more attempts to solve the problem fail. This was where I started. I knew things were going to get worse for the humans. If Innistrad was things looking bad, Dark Ascension was things looking much, much worse.

Which is boring and is exactly why second sets seldom seem to have a terribly distinct identity from the core - MBS did, because it did something revolutionary, and Worldwake and Conflux both came pretty close with animate lands and Domain, but still rode too much on the coattails of their predecessor.  Lorwyn doesn't really count because of its variant structure, nor does Ravnica with the guild thing, but other than that, what do you have?  Planar Chaos was "Time Spiral with fancy frames and slightly more color-pie bending".  Betrayers of Kamigawa was "Champions of Kamigawa plus Ninjas".  Darksteel was "Mirrodin plus indestructible artifacts".  Legions was "Onslaught with a no-spells gimmick".  Torment was distinctive for a change, but before that Planeshift was "Invasion plus Gating".  And despite being set on a completely different plane, Nemesis didn't differ that much from Masques, nor did Legacy from Urza's Saga, nor Stronghold from Tempest.  Whereas in nearly every case from Prophecy's "rhystic" spells on (again with Odyssey block being something of an exception), the third set offered a huge twist which completely changed how things worked in a fundamental way - "size matters" in Scourge, sunburst in 5D, "hand size matters" in Saviors, and pretty much everything the game could possibly contain in Future Sight.  In all cases, the winter set gets somewhat short shrift.
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
It's not necessarily worse than Mind Control. With Soul Seizer there is an intimidating board presence in that any one of your creatures could be stolen if the Seizer goes unblocked (keep in mind it says may transform, you don't have to). If this is on the board, you would think twice about dropping that big fatty. 
For the player who played Soul Seizer, creating the board presence may be all he/she needed to win the game next turn, whereas if there was a Mind Control in his/her hand it would be a completely different story. 
I like the card; it's not bad, but it has sort of been done before, as mentioned, with Dominating Licid and the like.
The card is extremely cool flavor-wise, but as already pointed out it is mechanically useless.  Since you'll be turning it into a Mind Control, and it costs the same as Mind Control but waits a turn and needs to connect in combat, it just isn't really wise to use.  (I applaud Pedrodyf's attempt to make its weakness sound like a strength, but you could just sit there saying "I have a Mind Control in my hand", or to be formal using a Liar's Pendulum or something to prove this claim, and accomplish the same effect without having to proactively spend the mana and attack first.)

What the card really needs is for Ghastly Haunting (and by the way, how unfortunate that you already blew the name Ghostly Possession on something less fitting) to return to your hand or untransform back into the ghost when its creature dies.  You can almost get this now since ways to return a creature card from graveyard to hand are more plentiful than such methods for an Aura, but it's at most a very slim advantage to be able to Corpse Dance this (which I think would still get the Haunting exiled at EOT, correct?) or get it back with a Gravedigger, given the difficulties involved.

In other words I think we just got a sneaky preview of Avacyn Restored - Morbid was already stated as being something of a "workhorse" mechanic which wasn't being used to do anything fancy, and here we again heard that it's being used in a normal and non-innovative way.  So I'm betting that when Avacyn comes back she'll start slaughtering anything that seems even slightly evil, and the central mechanical basis of the entire AVR set is going to be several evolutions on Morbid.
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
I mean, I know they're pretty divisive, but that means Werewolves have this set, and that is it. Seven more werewolves, and then no more for a very long time. They better have made them count, but the line about the fronts not being that good does not fill me with hope.

Werewolves existed before, and can easily exist again.  There is absolutely nothing locking the use of "Werewolf" in the typline to cards with stuff on both sides.
To me the most interesting line was the one where he mentioned casually in one sentence that we weren't getting any DFCs in Avacyn Restored. I mean, I know they're pretty divisive, but that means Werewolves have this set, and that is it. Seven more werewolves, and then no more for a very long time. They better have made them count, but the line about the fronts not being that good does not fill me with hope. 



He only said DFCs wouldn't be in the third set. Werewolves could very well be in the last set, just minus transform. Maybe when Avacyn comes back, not everyone is saved, and some people get stuck forever in wolf form (or choose to be stuck in wolf form).

Innistrad is the most flavorful set in Magic history and the best Limited environment anyone can remember for a long time (not that you can tell reading the awful, entitled whining on this thread so far).  I'm really excited to see it get a bunch of new cards and see what happens, especially given the order packs will be opened in.  Already things like the anti-synergy between Travel Preparations and the (seemingly incredible?) Undying Haste guy show how pick orders and archetypes might shift around.  Hopefully the new environment will be just as good or even better.  I wonder if there is a "curse" deck?  That would be awesome.

Regarding Soul Seizer in particular, Mind Control has always been a straight up first-pick in draft.  It's actually quite an obnoxious card in draft (especially for an Uncommon) as it swings the board state dramatically.  This guy is weaker in most circumstances - but is he still a first pick?  This is the kind of interesting question that is way better than just, "oh look, Control Magic, better take that".  Soul Seizer isn't (?) going to be making Constructed but Constructed cards are always a small subset of a set (design challenge - create a set where that isn't true!)  I personally would much rather have this in the set than a functionally identical Mind Control.

Side story: a guy at work who once said he had played Magic but didn't like it that much has got so into it since Innistrad came out he told me yesterday he shifted his on-call rotation to avoid the Dark Ascension prerelease.

Awesome stuff. 
No, Mark, you re-did Dominating Licid. Maybe someone topped-down a card, but this is a Licid, and will have just as much rules issues with it as Licids do. Also, your other version of "ghost haunts person" was done with Cloistered Youth, only now you've just blended that with Thalakos Deceiver. Really top-down (/snark).



But that's how top-down works. You're coming from another direction, so even if you end up in the same place as something else, the process behind it is different. So "Really top-down" isn't saying much in connection to the rest. 


Which is boring and is exactly why second sets seldom seem to have a terribly distinct identity from the core - MBS did, because it did something revolutionary, and Worldwake and Conflux both came pretty close with animate lands and Domain, but still rode too much on the coattails of their predecessor.  Lorwyn doesn't really count because of its variant structure, nor does Ravnica with the guild thing, but other than that, what do you have?  Planar Chaos was "Time Spiral with fancy frames and slightly more color-pie bending".  Betrayers of Kamigawa was "Champions of Kamigawa plus Ninjas".  Darksteel was "Mirrodin plus indestructible artifacts".  Legions was "Onslaught with a no-spells gimmick".  Torment was distinctive for a change, but before that Planeshift was "Invasion plus Gating".  And despite being set on a completely different plane, Nemesis didn't differ that much from Masques, nor did Legacy from Urza's Saga, nor Stronghold from Tempest.  Whereas in nearly every case from Prophecy's "rhystic" spells on (again with Odyssey block being something of an exception), the third set offered a huge twist which completely changed how things worked in a fundamental way - "size matters" in Scourge, sunburst in 5D, "hand size matters" in Saviors, and pretty much everything the game could possibly contain in Future Sight.  In all cases, the winter set gets somewhat short shrift.



I also like third sets far more than second ones, but it seems that second sets have been doing fine in sales and popularity whereas third sets have been referred to as the problem child multiple times in the past.

>I also like third sets far more than second ones, but it seems that second sets have been doing fine in sales and popularity whereas third sets have been
>referred to as the problem child multiple times in the past.

Completely agree. I think R&D has always pushed the power level in the second set (c.f. Affinity, Jace, Jitte etc) as a sales strategy, and saved their zaniest (and most interesting) ideas for the third set. First set is for Timmy, second is for Spike and third is for Johnny. Having said that, seems like this is the final set for many of these mechanics, so should see some cool stuff (love the new Chalice)

 
But, soul seizer is better than mind control in the aspect that it do not target the objetive, you just enchant any creature so, shroud and hexproof don't protect the creatures against it.

 "come invisible stalker or lumberknot now you work for me"

 
But, soul seizer is better than mind control in the aspect that it do not target the objetive, you just enchant any creature so, shroud and hexproof don't protect the creatures against it.

 "come invisible stalker or lumberknot now you work for me"

 

Reread the card, the spirit does target what it enchants
Official Speaker of the Expanded Multiverse Project, Step into Dominia-Embrace the infinite Magic of the Planes. This -> is my favorite smiley, I will use it often and without reason. You have been warned.
The Story of My Love
79035425 wrote:
BURSTING WITH VIGOR!
Trolljuju wiped the sweat from his brow as he continued his slow trudge up the snowy mountain. The wind was strong and fiercely cold, but he pressed against it. Juju knew Beast Engine was somewhere at the peak, waiting for him. But this was not a matter of confronting the forces of nature themselves; that had been accomplished long before, and was now too easy to maintain the manly man's interest. Today, Beast Engine was here waiting for a friend. Trolljuju's mind drifted from his appointment to thoughts of Beast Engine's manliness. The only man in history to punch the fossilized remains of a dinosaur back to life just to punch it to death again. The man who deflected bullets with his pectoral muscles during his daily assassination attempts. The man who cured cancer with a serum made from pure crystalized virility. The man who burst with vigor. Not just a man but a Man- the manliest of all men. A god of masculinity in physical form. Trolljuju's heart fluttered at the memory of him and lightened his steps as he pressed on. Suddenly, he was shaken from his reverie by a deep, powerful rumble in the mountain that shook him to his core. Instinctively, he threw himself to the ground just before the slope ahead of him exploded in a fiery wall of light and heat. So great was the force that the entire upper section of the mountain was vaproized. It scorched Juju's coat, then rose on the air to drift far away, a plume of white-hot ash. When Trolljuju lifted his head to see what was left behind, he beheld a wide, perfectly flat stone plateau, and in the distance he could see a muscular figure, his foot still held up from the kick. There was no doubt it was Beast Engine. As soon as the ground beneath him cooled, Juju cast his heavy pack aside and ran. As the figure grew with closeness, he could see Beast Engine was nude, as was expected. The snow that fell near him turned to a thin wall of steam, looking to Trolljuju's eyes like a barrier. Engine was too strong, too manly to occupy the same space as the ordinary universe. He lived in a world all his own. But fortunately for Juju, it was only an illusion. He ran at full speed into Engine, who caught him with both arms and effortlessly twirled with him, resting with Juju dipped low to the ground in Engine's arms. "Beast Engine, my love," Trolljuju breathed, sturck with awe at Engine's masculine beauty despite the familiarity of his face. Engine just smiled, radiating from every inch of him with incredible strength, yet gentle warmth. "It's been so long, Juju. I've missed you." "Forgive me. I lost contact with you while you were boxing with Death to win back and consume the soul of Theodore Roosevelt. But now I'm here..." Juju lifted one tentative hand to Engine's face, but he pulled away. "You know I cannot give you what you seek. Were we to make love, your body would be destroyed by the force." "I know, of course I would," Juju responded, tears in his eyes. "May I have, at least, one kiss?" "Very well. For you, my friend." Slowly, gingerly, they came closer. But the moment their lips met, a flood of unbridled manliness rushed into Trolljuju, body and soul, and every cell in his body exploded. Beast Engine fell to his knees, and in his grief, he wept. The tears that fell from his face burned deep into the rock beneath him. But slowly, his sorrow turned to conviction. He beat the crap out of Death once. He could do it again.
But, soul seizer is better than mind control in the aspect that it do not target the objetive, you just enchant any creature so, shroud and hexproof don't protect the creatures against it.

 "come invisible stalker or lumberknot now you work for me"

 


Nope, you attach it to "target creature".
Sorry it says enchant creature, not enchant target creature...

 then this is the rule

303.4f. If an Aura is entering the battlefield under a player’s control by any means other than by resolving as an Aura spell, and the effect putting it onto the battlefield doesn’t specify the object or player the Aura will enchant, that player chooses what it will enchant as the Aura enters the battlefield. The player must choose a legal object or player according to the Aura’s enchant ability and any other applicable effects  "

 When you transfor the card it becomes an aura and you did not cast it then it has to be atached to  any valid objet and since it says only enchant creature and no enchant target creature you attach it to any creature not making it "target" rendering hexproof and shourd invalid.

Edit : sorry i see it now the last part says target creature... my bad
The untransformed side says: "When ~ deals combat damage to a player, you may transform it.  If you do, attach it to target creature that player controls."

So if there is a targetable creature on the opponent's side then I guess you won't be able to attach it to a Shroud or Hexproof creature.

But what if the only creature on the other side of the board is Invisible Stalker?  You can still transform Soul Seizer, then you can't fulfil the next part of the card.  Can you then attach it to Invisible Stalker under rule 304.4f?

Edit: I guess "and the effect putting it onto the battlefield doesn’t specify the object or player the Aura will enchant" means that 304.4f does not apply.  So it goes to the graveyard?
But what if the only creature on the other side of the board is Invisible Stalker?  You can still transform Soul Seizer, then you can't fulfil the next part of the card.  Can you then attach it to Invisible Stalker under rule 304.4f?
 

No.

Official Speaker of the Expanded Multiverse Project, Step into Dominia-Embrace the infinite Magic of the Planes. This -> is my favorite smiley, I will use it often and without reason. You have been warned.
The Story of My Love
79035425 wrote:
BURSTING WITH VIGOR!
Trolljuju wiped the sweat from his brow as he continued his slow trudge up the snowy mountain. The wind was strong and fiercely cold, but he pressed against it. Juju knew Beast Engine was somewhere at the peak, waiting for him. But this was not a matter of confronting the forces of nature themselves; that had been accomplished long before, and was now too easy to maintain the manly man's interest. Today, Beast Engine was here waiting for a friend. Trolljuju's mind drifted from his appointment to thoughts of Beast Engine's manliness. The only man in history to punch the fossilized remains of a dinosaur back to life just to punch it to death again. The man who deflected bullets with his pectoral muscles during his daily assassination attempts. The man who cured cancer with a serum made from pure crystalized virility. The man who burst with vigor. Not just a man but a Man- the manliest of all men. A god of masculinity in physical form. Trolljuju's heart fluttered at the memory of him and lightened his steps as he pressed on. Suddenly, he was shaken from his reverie by a deep, powerful rumble in the mountain that shook him to his core. Instinctively, he threw himself to the ground just before the slope ahead of him exploded in a fiery wall of light and heat. So great was the force that the entire upper section of the mountain was vaproized. It scorched Juju's coat, then rose on the air to drift far away, a plume of white-hot ash. When Trolljuju lifted his head to see what was left behind, he beheld a wide, perfectly flat stone plateau, and in the distance he could see a muscular figure, his foot still held up from the kick. There was no doubt it was Beast Engine. As soon as the ground beneath him cooled, Juju cast his heavy pack aside and ran. As the figure grew with closeness, he could see Beast Engine was nude, as was expected. The snow that fell near him turned to a thin wall of steam, looking to Trolljuju's eyes like a barrier. Engine was too strong, too manly to occupy the same space as the ordinary universe. He lived in a world all his own. But fortunately for Juju, it was only an illusion. He ran at full speed into Engine, who caught him with both arms and effortlessly twirled with him, resting with Juju dipped low to the ground in Engine's arms. "Beast Engine, my love," Trolljuju breathed, sturck with awe at Engine's masculine beauty despite the familiarity of his face. Engine just smiled, radiating from every inch of him with incredible strength, yet gentle warmth. "It's been so long, Juju. I've missed you." "Forgive me. I lost contact with you while you were boxing with Death to win back and consume the soul of Theodore Roosevelt. But now I'm here..." Juju lifted one tentative hand to Engine's face, but he pulled away. "You know I cannot give you what you seek. Were we to make love, your body would be destroyed by the force." "I know, of course I would," Juju responded, tears in his eyes. "May I have, at least, one kiss?" "Very well. For you, my friend." Slowly, gingerly, they came closer. But the moment their lips met, a flood of unbridled manliness rushed into Trolljuju, body and soul, and every cell in his body exploded. Beast Engine fell to his knees, and in his grief, he wept. The tears that fell from his face burned deep into the rock beneath him. But slowly, his sorrow turned to conviction. He beat the crap out of Death once. He could do it again.
But what if the only creature on the other side of the board is Invisible Stalker?  You can still transform Soul Seizer, then you can't fulfil the next part of the card.  Can you then attach it to Invisible Stalker under rule 304.4f?
 

No.


Why not? can you explain it please?
But what if the only creature on the other side of the board is Invisible Stalker?  You can still transform Soul Seizer, then you can't fulfil the next part of the card.  Can you then attach it to Invisible Stalker under rule 304.4f?
 

No.


Why not? can you explain it please?


Cause you can't break the rules just to satisfy a requirement. Its like if you play an aura and only creature in play have shround you still can't attach it to it.
But, you aren't playing this aura it only happend to exists when the transform occur, and the point of the rule 303.4f is for this kind of situation

 you simply attach it to a valid objective and it doesn't matter if the creature has hexproof as you attach since you never target it

 But i guess we need to ask a judge...

 Thanks for replying
 
 But i guess we need to ask a judge..



Hardly, don't try to find loopholes where none exist.

If you can't target a creature with it's ability then you can't even choose to transform it in the first place.
Official Speaker of the Expanded Multiverse Project, Step into Dominia-Embrace the infinite Magic of the Planes. This -> is my favorite smiley, I will use it often and without reason. You have been warned.
The Story of My Love
79035425 wrote:
BURSTING WITH VIGOR!
Trolljuju wiped the sweat from his brow as he continued his slow trudge up the snowy mountain. The wind was strong and fiercely cold, but he pressed against it. Juju knew Beast Engine was somewhere at the peak, waiting for him. But this was not a matter of confronting the forces of nature themselves; that had been accomplished long before, and was now too easy to maintain the manly man's interest. Today, Beast Engine was here waiting for a friend. Trolljuju's mind drifted from his appointment to thoughts of Beast Engine's manliness. The only man in history to punch the fossilized remains of a dinosaur back to life just to punch it to death again. The man who deflected bullets with his pectoral muscles during his daily assassination attempts. The man who cured cancer with a serum made from pure crystalized virility. The man who burst with vigor. Not just a man but a Man- the manliest of all men. A god of masculinity in physical form. Trolljuju's heart fluttered at the memory of him and lightened his steps as he pressed on. Suddenly, he was shaken from his reverie by a deep, powerful rumble in the mountain that shook him to his core. Instinctively, he threw himself to the ground just before the slope ahead of him exploded in a fiery wall of light and heat. So great was the force that the entire upper section of the mountain was vaproized. It scorched Juju's coat, then rose on the air to drift far away, a plume of white-hot ash. When Trolljuju lifted his head to see what was left behind, he beheld a wide, perfectly flat stone plateau, and in the distance he could see a muscular figure, his foot still held up from the kick. There was no doubt it was Beast Engine. As soon as the ground beneath him cooled, Juju cast his heavy pack aside and ran. As the figure grew with closeness, he could see Beast Engine was nude, as was expected. The snow that fell near him turned to a thin wall of steam, looking to Trolljuju's eyes like a barrier. Engine was too strong, too manly to occupy the same space as the ordinary universe. He lived in a world all his own. But fortunately for Juju, it was only an illusion. He ran at full speed into Engine, who caught him with both arms and effortlessly twirled with him, resting with Juju dipped low to the ground in Engine's arms. "Beast Engine, my love," Trolljuju breathed, sturck with awe at Engine's masculine beauty despite the familiarity of his face. Engine just smiled, radiating from every inch of him with incredible strength, yet gentle warmth. "It's been so long, Juju. I've missed you." "Forgive me. I lost contact with you while you were boxing with Death to win back and consume the soul of Theodore Roosevelt. But now I'm here..." Juju lifted one tentative hand to Engine's face, but he pulled away. "You know I cannot give you what you seek. Were we to make love, your body would be destroyed by the force." "I know, of course I would," Juju responded, tears in his eyes. "May I have, at least, one kiss?" "Very well. For you, my friend." Slowly, gingerly, they came closer. But the moment their lips met, a flood of unbridled manliness rushed into Trolljuju, body and soul, and every cell in his body exploded. Beast Engine fell to his knees, and in his grief, he wept. The tears that fell from his face burned deep into the rock beneath him. But slowly, his sorrow turned to conviction. He beat the crap out of Death once. He could do it again.
But, there is a period between the rules

Soul Seizer
 3UU 
 Creature- Spirit
 Flying
 When soul seizer deals combat damage to a player, you may transform it   .     If you do attach it to target creature that player controls. 

 
then you can transform it despite there is a valid target or not, when you transform it then the second statment aplies and tries to attach it to target creature but only once you already transform it.

  


Guadarra - something about the two parts being separate sentences makes it seem (to me) like you can transform it even if there is no legal target as you say.

    When ~ deals combat damage to a player, you may transform it.  If you do, attach it to target creature that player controls.

But by analogy to Carrion Thrash's dies trigger:


    When Carrion Thrash dies, you may pay {2}. If you do, return another target creature card from your graveyard to your hand.


I would say that that reading is incorrect.  The Gatherer rulings for Carrion Thrash say:

    You choose a target when the ability triggers. You decide whether to pay {2} when the ability resolves. 

So the way this works is that when you deal damage with Soul Seizer you choose a target.  If there is no legal target the ability fizzles at this point and the whole "you may transform it" never happens.  Even though the target is in the second sentence and might seem like it gets chosen later from a straight reading of the card.  This is due to:


603.3d The remainder of the process for putting a triggered ability on the stack is identical to the process for casting a spell listed in rules 601.2c-d. If a choice is required when the triggered ability goes on the stack but no legal choices can be made for it, or if a rule or a continuous effect otherwise makes the ability illegal, the ability is simply removed from the stack.
So I think that the two sentences make up just one triggered, targeted ability and you cannot transform if there is no legal target.

Edit: formatting. 




"Welcome to the first Dark Ascension Preview Week, where I'm going show off a pretty cool preview card."


This was untrue. This card is as boring as they get, except for all the rules questions it generates. Great work reducing the complexity of Magic and generating interest in this set sir.  
But what if the only creature on the other side of the board is Invisible Stalker?  You can still transform Soul Seizer, then you can't fulfil the next part of the card.  Can you then attach it to Invisible Stalker under rule 304.4f?
 

No.

Why not? can you explain it please?



The reason Rule 303.4f doesn't apply is because of "If an Aura is entering the battlefield". When you transform Soul Seizer into Ghastly Haunting, it's already on the battlefield, it's just changing its type, so it isn't "entering".

You're right, you can still choose to transform it if there are no targets, but usually you wouldn't want to do that. Without a legal target, the "If you do" ability would fizzle. In that case, Ghastly Haunting is an Aura on the battlefield that isn't enchanting anything, and is put in the graveyard as a state-based action under Rule 704.5n.

Edit: Sorry, my mistake, see explanations by bakert and adeyke
Just to explain further:

You choose the target for the ability as the ability is put on the stack, and you must choose a legal target at that time (so nothing with shroud or hexproof).  If there isn't any legal target at all, the ability is simply removed from the stack.

Then, when the ability resolves, you again check if it the target is legal.  If no, the abity is countered.  If yes, the ability resolves, and you can choose to transform and attach it.

Without a legal target, you can't transform it.

So even though it's never an Aura spell, the fact that the ability is targeted still stops most shenagigans.  The only exception that comes to mind is that you could steal Emrakul, the Aeons Torn, which you couldn't do with Mind Control.

(I suppose there is one other funny interaction.  If the creature can be targeted but not enchanted (e.g. an animated land enchanted by Consecrate Land), you could choose it as target, transform the creature, but then fail to attach it.  It'll then immediately go to the graveyard for being an unattached Aura.)
Thanks a lot to every one, now i get it.

Even if the target part were to be passed as the card transform, it isn't entering so the rule 303.4f doesn't apply but i guess the target statment don't let it be transformed in first place.

 So, if you change the creature type to Human and then cast moonmist and transform the humans the aura is not entering and the rule still doesn't apply?
Correct. If it transforms for any reason other than using its triggered ability, it won't have a chance to attach itself to anything. For Rule 303.4f to apply, it would have to enter the battlefield back-face-up, which isn't ever supposed to happen (Rule 711.5).

Thanks to the rules banter here, another potential benefit of this over Mind Control has occurred to me. If your opponent sacrifices their creature or makes it hexproof in response to MC, your spell is countered for want of a target. But if Soul Seizer makes a swipe at something that isn't there, it lives to try again next turn.

I'm excited; this looks like a lot of fun to play with! Gameplay-wise, it has extra versatility at the expense of some extra hoops to jump through. Flavor-wise, the execution of one creature possessing another is perfect, and provides a nice malevolent blue foil to white's more protective Ghostly Possession. And I like the artwork, too! (*candles snuff* "No, THIS way!")
He only said DFCs wouldn't be in the third set. Werewolves could very well be in the last set, just minus transform. Maybe when Avacyn comes back, not everyone is saved, and some people get stuck forever in wolf form (or choose to be stuck in wolf form).




Fair point. Ironically, Werewolves minus their signature flipping mechanic would likely be significantly more powerful than the DFC Werewolves. The reason I doubt it is that after pushing so hard to associate Werewolves with DFCs and stating that there was no good way to do Werewolf on only the front of a card that they would turn around and put Werewolves on one-sided card.

That said, now that we have the foundation of Werewolves who transform, it's easier to get away with not always having a transform mechanic, in the same way that the abundance of Vampires means that they no longer need to give them a bloodsucking mechanic, as Barony Vampire shows us. 
Immature College Student (Also a Rules Advisor)
Fair point. Ironically, Werewolves minus their signature flipping mechanic would likely be significantly more powerful than the DFC Werewolves. The reason I doubt it is that after pushing so hard to associate Werewolves with DFCs and stating that there was no good way to do Werewolf on only the front of a card that they would turn around and put Werewolves on one-sided card.

That said, now that we have the foundation of Werewolves who transform, it's easier to get away with not always having a transform mechanic, in the same way that the abundance of Vampires means that they no longer need to give them a bloodsucking mechanic, as Barony Vampire shows us. 



I think it depends on the extent to which Avacyn Restored is considered an extension of Innistrad vs. another swing of the pendulum.  Within the same block, they'd want to keep certain things constant, and that includes Werewolves as red/green DFCs with the usual trigger.  If they wanted to show AR as a drastic departure, however, they could easily change any of these.  After all, Shadowmoor/Eventide broke all sorts of "rules" put in place by Lorwyn/Morningtide.
No, Mark, you re-did Dominating Licid. Maybe someone topped-down a card, but this is a Licid, and will have just as much rules issues with it as Licids do. Also, your other version of "ghost haunts person" was done with Cloistered Youth, only now you've just blended that with Thalakos Deceiver. Really top-down (/snark).



But that's how top-down works. You're coming from another direction, so even if you end up in the same place as something else, the process behind it is different. So "Really top-down" isn't saying much in connection to the rest.



I think you're taking his story at face value:

The designers wanted a creature that triggered its Control Magic effect when it hit a creature. That's Debt of Loyalty. Only, it had to transform into an Aura instead of just "taking" it. At this point, consider that the card had an enforced structure that is different from almost every card printed to which it is similar: It flips itself over into an object that then attaches itself to another. The flip thing is new, even if the other aspect (aura, attaches) is Dominating Licid. So what they wanted was a unique trigger condition for a Dominating Licid variant. One must understand that the comparison to Licids for this card is unavoidable, and it should have been apparent to the person who first thought of "creature hits, becomes aura, steals other creature" and plugged it into the card file.

Knowing what your card wants to do and making a card do it is not "top-down." It's just design. The flavor idea of the spirit that possesses is top-down, but they had shown previous cards that embodied that "top-down" aspect already, with art and everything: Cloistered Youth is a person who "becomes" a wailing spirit, and Ghostly Possession is what happens when a spirit "takes control of the body," Exorcist-style. This card does take that tack in a way, and does approach the concept of "possession," but not something they had done before, and something they had done before yet more clearly. They wanted something new, instead, and went about designing this part of the mechanic first.

It started as a Dominating Licid variant, with a "top-down" aspect plugged into the design chain, but not from the beginning. It became a Thalakos Deceiver variant, grabbing any other creature when that creature hit a player, thereby blending two already known Blue cards (from the same block, no less), and then became what you see now. This is why I call "foul" on treating this card as "top-down."

Imagine instead you actually had Haunt in the Block, and "You control haunted creature" was the text on the card. Plugging "haunt" onto cards with Spirit would have enabled, top-down, the very aspect MaRo discusses in regards to flavoring Spirits and manipulators of things, presences and remnants. In fact, this was mentioned when Spirits were plugged as a tribe since the last time they were supported (in Ravnica). It becomes even more interesting if you think about spirits jumping from host to host, being intengible and hard to remove, so that they must find new bodies or be extinguished forever. Doing so could have led to a "chain haunt" mechanic, an extrapolation of the other one, allowing essentially infinite haunts. It would also have opened design space, and avoided the rules-messy problems that come from cards turning into other types of cards which then attach themselves (Licids, everyone?). Rules guys have not exactly solved the complex issues involving Licids, and it's not even mentioned in MaRo's article, which tells me he either didn't care or avoided it. Given that he's trying to upsell a clunky card, no wonder.
"Possibilities abound, too numerous to count." "Innocent, unbiased observation is a myth." --- P.B. Medawar (1969) "Ever since man first left his cave and met a stranger with a different language and a new way of looking at things, the human race has had a dream: to kill him, so we don't have to learn his language or his new way of looking at things." --- Zapp Brannigan (Beast With a Billion Backs)
Knowing what your card wants to do and making a card do it is not "top-down." It's just design.



Indeed, what's top-down design is starting with a flavor concept, a real-world thing, and then translating that into mechanics. What happened with this card and Cloistered Youth. That they are both based on the same concept, but from a different angle, doesn't invalidate either's top-down design.

Basically, if that "wants to do" is something mechanically, gameplay-y, it's bottom-up design and if it's something flavory it's top-down design. You're looking at it the wrong way. Your post starts with "The designers wanted a creature that triggered its Control Magic  effect when it hit a creature." but that's not true. The designers wanted a creature that represented a ghost taking control of a victim.

I don't see where you get that the card started with Dominating Licid and had the top-down aspect later. Which likely wouldn't be top-down design at all anymore indeed. That would be bottom-up design arriving at the point where flavor has to be filled in.

MaRo states in the article: "This card's design was clearly top down. We were trying to come up with ghost tropes and an obvious one was possession."