This thread is for discussion of this week's From the Lab, which goes live Thursday morning on magicthegathering.com.
I must say that I'm excited about the Mind Swap Magic premise. I enjoy swapping decks with my friends and giving their strategy a whirl. Doing so midgame could be pretty sweet. Of course, being the sometime griefer that I am, I'd be tempted to build a terrible deck incapable of winning on its own. You know, along the lines of decks built around that enchantment (which name I cannot remember) that essentially has players switch libraries by exile-drawing cards. I was going to build a deck with that and walls, but decided it would only win once per opponent, if I was lucky.
So big problem with your Mind Swap magic: its busted. Follow the example:
If the planeswalker follows you around, and you can swap minds wiht a targeted player, then you can simply cast a planeswalker, use a loyalty-building ability to target the person next in turn order (say Liliana's discard on the player clockwise to your left), then you swap minds. The player finishes your turn doing whatever they like, then you take their turn (next in turn order), essentially taking an extra turn. You then use the planeswalker AGAIN, targeting the NEXT person in turn order. So on and so on.
Suddenly you are taking as many turns as you want, building your planeswalker all the while. Simply use their ultimate (again, Liliana's is best) and you're all set with a living planeswalker and advantage from an ultimate. Hopefully they have a targeting spell or ability in play, so you can take the next turn in turn order, and keep going in a circle till you win.
Uh, other than that glaring hole, pretty cool idea!
Yeah, you get the same problem if repeatable abilities allow you to swap minds just by targeting, like Prodigal Pyromancer for instance. And spells; I think after they'd played it once or twice, players would start to cram their decks with instants, and you'd end up with one lucky player cycling round and round and waiting to draw an ultimatum. It might be better to introduce a new proxy card specially to facilitate mind swapping- something like a 3cc sorcery that says "at the beginning of your end step, swap minds with target opponent".
The real problem is with having the ability to swap minds repeatedly in the same board-state. How about having a separate, shared deck of cards with big casting costs; the top card is kept face up, and the first player to cast it gets to swap minds with whoever they want. It might be even more fun to say that the effect of the spell actually resolves; so, you might want to swap minds with someone you've just hit with a Beacon of Immortality , but how about a Lava Axe ? In fact, you could balance it by having low-cost spells with negative effects (like edicts, burn and discard; especially anything that allows the departing player to foul up the board for the new arrival!) and high cost spells with positive effects (life-gain, draw and creature buffs).
I've played Musical Chairs Magic before, which is what the Mind Swap is with a couple of extra rules. The planeswalker rules, or things like Scandalmonger , seem like they'd just break it. It's a bit too random for my tastes.
On the other hand, I really like the idea of the Future Magic premise. It seems it'd be rather slanted towards decks with a lot of tutoring; my Archmage Ascension deck would have quite the unfair advantage. But otherwise, the flavour's very cool.
I think the web editor got the diagram for the Venn Diagram Magic wrong. If the initial games are ABC, DEF and GHI, with A, D and G winning, then the subsequent games are ADG, BE, FH, IC - not ADG, BC, EF, HI.
Is there some reason that Future Magic wouldn't be about putting Emrakul, the Aeons Torn and her friends in your future pile, and then just killing all of your opponents with them? Seems a bit broken.
Me and my group play a multi-player variant called knight and traitors. its has become what we play almost exclusively. Its kinda like BANG but the rules are a little different. most notably the knights and the king are not on a team and the king wins when he reaches his 15th turn. I could post the rules if anyone is interested in playing it.
for the most part it is fairly balanced. there is lots of backstabbing and politicking. generally if the traitors try and move too quickly to kill the king they usually end up dead. the king is usually safe because if you act too soon you get ganged up on quick. games with all 6 people have been some of the best moments in my magic life!
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