Mana from the Vault

Hello everybody, welcome back to normal life and our cycle of weekly episode of Ominous Designs. This one is mighty number 151. Yesterday, while recording our live episode I searched my design vault for mana producers I added in there recently. Here are two of them, an artifact and a land.

altar-to-the-forgotten-godsAltar to the Forgotten Gods

I don’t remember the exact time I thought of filtering colorless mana but I know it didn’t take me long to come up with a mana stone that could do exactly that and also create a mana of its own.

There are many three-drop-all-colors mana stones out there, much like Darksteel Ingot for example, but really Altar is Chromatic Lantern‘s cousin in spirit.
I can see this one be quite powerful in Cube, especially combined with cards like Sol Ring, Basalt Monolith or Worn Powerstone.

overlooking-lakeOverlooking Lake

Our second card was inspired by the recently spoiled commander card Ash Barrens.

Adding land cycling to a land is difficult to do properly, as you want to know where exactly it will fit on a mana curve and balance that with the types of mana it grants you access to. I started with a two color version and it was quite hard to make it better than a mere gate.
This version though, while unassuming, provides great flexibility, especially if you factor in the powerful ability of cycling at instant speed.

And here we are: first article of a new batch of 150. Let’s see if we can get there!
Either way I do hope you liked the cards, do let me know what you think and I’ll see you next week. Play responsibly!

United Colors of Colorless

Hi all! Welcome to another edition of Ominous designs, episode 116 to be precise. This week’s making of episode is already accessible on Responsible Gaming youtube channel for you to see. Today, following the Oath of the Gatewatch release, we are going to look at colored devoid creatures with abilities using the new colorless mana symbol. I am loving those and I want more of them!

Void Born ReplicatorVoid Born Replicator is the first one.

This one is very simple to understand. He is the Eldrazi cousin to Kiki-Jiki and the recently banned Splinter Twin.

In classic Eldrazi tradition, replicator at the same time has a competitive body and a very potent ability that uses the colorless mana to justify its power level.

On the other hand I am reasonably happy that using a mana to activate will protect it from being abused the way similar cards have been.

Æther EraserÆther Eraser.

If you watch the video you will see me go back and forth a bunch on this design. Part of it was a top down design from the picture, with the theme of the week in mind.

I tried to make eraser be a hate bear, but this is the closest I got. Just like I said for replicator though, eraser has good stats and a powerful ability fueled by colorless mana. I don’t think it is bad and I don’t think it is too powerful either. Being able to remove an enchantment each turn is ok, it would have been much wilder to remove artifacts that way.

Simple, yes? Those are your designs for the week, I hope you liked them! I think they look good, hopefully they are reasonably balanced as well. Do let me know what you think and comment anywhere, social media or streaming services. Next week I’ll be announcing my upcoming holidays but we have one more article before that.

Until then, you all have a great week!



Enchanting and Legendary

Hi all. Last week I came across a new group of designers and they inspired me with today’s theme. Someone posted a challenge to create a legendary enchantment – now you know all about this article’s title – and it turns out I came up with more than one. Want to see them?

Curse of the Witch HuntCurse of the Witch Hunt is a classic flavor-fueled design. Curse a player and everybody must throw themselves at them until they are dead.
When they are though, their last action will be to put the curse on someone else.

I believe that such a binding effect should cost a lot, there’s actually a chance it shouldn’t exist at all!

This is either useless or strictly negative for the caster in a two player game but it’s ok: in some editions – mostly multiplayer ones like Conspiracy or Commander decks – we have seen cards like this before.

Into the Blind EternitiesInto the Blind Eternities. As inspired by another designer’s contribution, we are now looking at cards’ watermarks. This is obviously completely new, and most likely not doable, if only because some cards don’t have the same watermark in different printing – including FNM and pre-release version.

I find the concept highly entertaining though, and reminiscent of City in a Bottle, another very weird card that wouldn’t be printed nowadays but has fantastic flavour. If you are not familiar with the Blind Eternities, they are the space that separates all planes of the Magic Multiverse.

And those are the cards! Hope you enjoyed them as much as I did.
Spoiler alert this theme gave me a few more ideas for Auras that I might dive into next week. Until then you all have a good one!