1/14/2013 MM: "Gatecrashing the Party, Part 3"

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

"How do I know that extort happened during devign and not development?"
"If I played with it, it had to be during devign."

Is devign like some sort of hybrid stage of R&D that is between design and development? or is that just a typo lol.

exort is the perfect orz mechanic, so grindy
also really looking forward to some cool gruul guys, i know gruul are kind of outnumbered in the polls right now but i still love em since old school rav days lol 
Yes, devign is a stage in between design and development.

I'm just going to say this now: that Gruul goblin with the spear is a red Tundra Wolves with bloodrush for .

IMAGE(http://steamsignature.com/status/default/76561197995631463.png) No longer a commander as of 7/29/13.

Wow that oppress mechanic sounds well, very oppressive.
For Orzhov, Shawn Main had come up with a mechanic he called "extort." The idea was that it taxed your opponent for casting spells.


The way you worded that sounds like extort initially worked by leeching the opponent when they cast spells. Hmmm, I wonder if that ever was the case.

I am not a Gruul player at all, but I like Bloodrush because it manages to make something historically unplayable in constructed magic, pump spells (outside of combo decks like infect), quite attractive. If they're on a a good creature that is.

IMAGE(http://i1.minus.com/jbcBXM4z66fMtK.jpg)

192884403 wrote:
surely one can't say complex conditional passive language is bad grammar ?

Is devign like some sort of hybrid stage of R&D that is between design and development? or is that just a typo lol. 



From the article itself:

So we started looking for another mechanic. Note at this point we were in devign, the space in between design and development. Design still has control of the file but is addressing notes from the developers. The reason devign exists is that before it did, a lot of early development was done fixing design issues. This wasn't a great use of development's time and it was forcing them to work in an area that wasn't their specialty. Devign was created to allow development to make criticisms but in a time that design could solve them.
 
Extort appeared during devign? Well, maybe, but...

The idea was that it taxed your opponent for casting spells.

...suggests otherwise. Because that ISN'T what Extort does if you read the actual cards. So possibly Gavin was actually right?

Although Gavin did say Extort came post-handoff, he also said they created a special Design/Development subteam to tackle Orzhov.  Which makes it entirely possible Mark would have played with the mechanic even after it went to design.  So his reasoning is easily flawed.


Also:

The idea was that it taxed your opponent for casting spells.

I can't imagine that New World Order design would let that kind of mechanic last for more than 10 seconds.  A mechanic that makes your opponent not want to play his spells?  Not a chance.  Now Bloodrush as a sorcery instead of an instant - that I could see them doing.

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.

I must be being Captain Stupid, as I don't understand how kickboxing is repeatable kill.
Is Blind Obedience any good in Limited? The Extort triggers will provide some value, especially on an early drop like this, but even playing a defensive deck you're still going to want to curve out with your blockers. Similarly I'm unlikely to be attacking very much with an Orzhov-style bleeder deck (unless I get a bunch of things like Alms Beast, I guess), and so making their blockers arrive tapped doesn't seem to achieve very much. Kismet effects have never seemed that strong unless you've got a Stasis or Winter Orb, which I imagine is somewhat unlikely in Return to Ravnica.

I just have a feeling I'd always rather have a Basilica Guards, and so I can't see where this card is going to be any use. Unless there's tons of haste around, I suppose? It's a fair answer to Hellraiser Goblin, I guess?

The way you worded that sounds like extort initially worked by leeching the opponent when they cast spells. Hmmm, I wonder if that ever was the case.

I would agree that leeching the opponents when they cast spells makes more sense from a flavor perspective, especially considering the flavor text on Basilica Guards.  White, of course, likes tithe and punishment effects, and black has some precedence with choice-of-damnation style effects like Dash Hopes and...erm, Choice of Damnations.  However, from a mechanical point of view, it's probably not a good idea to let the effectiveness of a guild's mechanic depend on whether the opponent decides to play spells or not.  It's a bit unfair to tax the opponent for playing your own spells, but this is white-black we're talking about here.

Now Bloodrush as a sorcery instead of an instant - that I could see them doing.

I was surprised that bloodrush turned out the way it did since it seems really similar to the instant-speed version of scavenge that got axed.  I guess the difference is that since bloodrush activates from a hidden zone it doesn't increase board complexity, and also that bloodrush represents a choice (you get a creature or a pump spell) while instant-speed scavenge was all upside (you got a creature and a pump spell).

I must be being Captain Stupid, as I don't understand how kickboxing is repeatable kill.

I don't think it's so much that a particular card with kickboxing would be repeatable kill but that a deck centered around kickboxing would effectively have access to repeatable kill.  With bloodrush, every creature doubles as a possible pump spell; with kickboxing, every creature doubles as an all-upside removal spell.
It's interesting to read how much R&D's processes have changed - I'm hoping we get a full article about this at some point, so far it's just disconnected references.

For example, some things we've heard about recently, just mentioned in passing:

Creation of "Devign" phase
Discussion of what happens when Design runs too long and delays Development
Additional involvement of the Creative team in the process
I love extort as a mechanic
I love extort as a mechanic, I think it is very flavorful, and just powerful enough without being over the top.  However, I'm concerned about its viability in constructed.  Cheap cards with extort are going to be much better than expensive ones because it gives you a lot better chance of being able to extort in the long game.  The spoiled card is cheap but the effect is not good.  I think something like W, Enchantment, extort would actually be pretty good, simple, and effective (so long as it wasn't a rare).  I'm not sure the ability is actually worth the extra 1 because you won't want to play 1W on turn 2 to do nothing immediately.  My concern is that the bleeder deck won't actually be good enough because the extort cards spoiled thus far just aren't going to cut it.  There are some amazing Orzov cards that will see play but so far the extort cards aren't connecting for me.  So my fear is that once again, bleeder won't really be viable in competitive constructed.


I'm so glad the keyword "kickboxing" never made it. It seems so . . . weird. I can pinpoint exactly what makes it weird, but it's definitely weird.

"My Goliath will, um, kickbox your Ooze."

"... Huh?" 

"... They're kickboxing." 

"Like Bruce Lee kind of stuff?"

"... Sure."

"How the hell does that work??"

"... Because I'm not a Vorthos, I guess. . ."

Your friendly neighborhood Revenant Minotaur Half-Blooded Dragonborn Fighter Hybrid Barbarian Multiclassing into Warlord

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Kickboxing would have been reflavored had the mechanic worked out. Mechanics often have a placeholder name that makes sense to the team members but clearly isn't suited for for the "real world." 
Wow that oppress mechanic sounds well, very oppressive.
For Orzhov, Shawn Main had come up with a mechanic he called "extort." The idea was that it taxed your opponent for casting spells.


The way you worded that sounds like extort initially worked by leeching the opponent when they cast spells. Hmmm, I wonder if that ever was the case.



I was wondering the same thing. MaRo skipped the most interesting part of the history of Extort -- when did it switch from "taxing opponent's spells" to, um, adding an extra bit of self-serving oppressiveness to each of your spells?

I can easily see how the original Extort wouldn't work as well. I mean, who wants a mechanic that basically gives complete control of it to your opponent? Still it cannot be denied that mana/life taxation is really flavorful. So I'd be curious to hear how that worked out.

Now Bloodrush as a sorcery instead of an instant - that I could see them doing.

I was surprised that bloodrush turned out the way it did since it seems really similar to the instant-speed version of scavenge that got axed.  I guess the difference is that since bloodrush activates from a hidden zone it doesn't increase board complexity, and also that bloodrush represents a choice (you get a creature or a pump spell) while instant-speed scavenge was all upside (you got a creature and a pump spell).



The mechanics work better this way, not just in gameplay, but from a flavor perspective:

Bloodrush is all like RWAR! IN YOUR FACE! You try to block me, I BEAT YOU OVER THE HEAD! Puny god.

Whereas Scavenge is, "Oh, don't mind us Golgari. As you can see, we're just cleaning up the sewers, gathering up the detritus (growing stronger all the while). Nothing surprising or unexpected. Nothing to worry about."

I was surprised that bloodrush turned out the way it did since it seems really similar to the instant-speed version of scavenge that got axed.  I guess the difference is that since bloodrush activates from a hidden zone it doesn't increase board complexity, and also that bloodrush represents a choice (you get a creature or a pump spell) while instant-speed scavenge was all upside (you got a creature and a pump spell).



The difference is that scavenge lasted for more than a turn, while Bloodrush ends at end of turn. Remembering something for one turn is easy. Remembering it for multiple turns is hard.

Also, I hate Gruul and it's my least favorite guild by a lot, but Bloodrush is awesome. Such a great mechanic.

 
I'm not really too sure how to feel about bloodrush yet. I'll be honest though: when I first saw the mechanic, I was a little disappointed and my first thought was "Oh, Gruul just got Channel from Champions of Kamigawa. Darn." Reading this article makes me feel a little better however - Mark at least recognized that they probably could have done better but ran out of time, and everyone signed off on it. Feels kind of strange that Orzhov had a strong follower to help their mechanic but Gruul didn't. Is there anyone in R&D who is a though-and-through Gruul? The Bloodrush mechanic might be very good, but I'm still going to wait until the prerelease to make any opinions. I do like how it does add a sense of surprise in a creature-based deck, but I know for certain I'd like a hexproof-like ability to use with Bloodrush like Vines of Vastwood instead of just generic pump spells that can easily be 2-for-1s.

I guess in general, I can only sum up my feelings about why I love to play Gruul with my absolute favorite first three turns in the original Ravnica block (or Standard at the time; possibly ever):

T1: Seal of Fire or Scorched Rusalka (Rift Bolt or Karplusan Wolverine)
T2: Scab-Clan Mauler Bloodthirst-ed
T3: Moldervine Cloak

After successfully attacking once, I honestly didn't care what my opponent did. Just being able to have a 6/6 trampler attacking on T3 was/is one of the coolest things I've ever experienced. That rush only increased the more I got a chance to do it again (or even make it bigger!). That to me is what the Gruul is all about.

I was surprised that bloodrush turned out the way it did since it seems really similar to the instant-speed version of scavenge that got axed.  I guess the difference is that since bloodrush activates from a hidden zone it doesn't increase board complexity


The difference is that scavenge lasted for more than a turn, while Bloodrush ends at end of turn. Remembering something for one turn is easy. Remembering it for multiple turns is hard.


I believe notthephonz is actually more correct.  Scavenge puts simple counters right on the creature, so there's no memory issue involved.  However, what many players wouldn't remember to do is to cross reference the graveyard against every possible opposing creature before each combat.  And then they'll blame themselves for missing something obvious.  Since R&D's contemporary motto is "dont' let players know how bad they are", that's something they avoid.


Contrast that to Bloodrush.  Sure, it grants abilities besides +1/+1s.  But that's not the factor in instant vs sorcery.  The difference is that the card is in the hand, not the graveyard.  Good players will still try to play around them, guessing what's in hand and playable.  But bad players will never know that was even possible, and have no idea why they lost.  Which is apparently desirable.


I must be being Captain Stupid, as I don't understand how kickboxing is repeatable kill.

Yeah it's not really.  Mark phrases things strangely sometimes.  What it is, however, is a deck full of 2-for-1s.  Very Jund.  (The deck, not the shard.)  A few make good cards. And when it's slightly unwieldy (like in the form of un-cast cards), 2-for-1s are desirable even.  

But too many and it becomes impossible to "play fair" against it.  Your card is a creature, then my card is a bigger creature that immediately kills yours?  It turns into a card advantage arms race, and that can become really stifling.

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.

Hey Mark,


I’m an avid listener of your podcasts and have listened to every one thus far. I actually listen to them on MY drive to work My only criticism is when you start throwing out random names too much.(  I’ve learned to love Scaff though )


Of course I know names like Bill Rose and Richard Garfield.. but sometimes it goes way over my head and I start to zone out. I know you’re probably doing it create a backdrop and you need certain characters for that backdrop and let’s face it, they’re the ones helping design/develop the game and deserved to be credited, but for a casual player like me it’s sometimes a bit too much.


The part of the podcasts I enjoy the most are where you go over certain cards and how they were created. Like Yawgmoth’s Will, Tolarian Academy, free spells, naming of Force of Will etc. Topics that go off the beaten path like the Pro Tour, Cycling and Code names were also very enjoyable. I also hope to one day hear a podcast about Poison (although I read your article about it already), Broken cards and the lessons you learned from them and the reasoning for making “bad” cards.


That’s just my 2 cents. Thanks for creating the podcasts Mark, hope there’s more to come!

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