Custom Card Game Design

Of Lithomancers and Equipment Tokens

While I haven’t been able to find the time to finish Generals of Dareth yet, much less begin developing Battlefields of Dareth (which does already have an initial design), I still frequent MtG news sites when the time allows, and often read recent news with design on my mind.  I was supremely excited about the recent spoiled planeswalker from the Commander 2014 line.

The Lithomancer has been revealed!

The Lithomancer, at long last

As you could probably already tell, I’m a huge fan of the Zendikar block, and Rise of the Eldrazi in particular.  My first block was built around the Eldrazi, and as I’ve mentioned previously, my overall plan is to build to my own Return to Zendikar, set in the same Alternate Universe as everything else I’ve designed.  So, although I have plans for my own Lithomancer (it is an alternate universe, after all), I am loving that we get to see the real deal.

Let’s talk about Nahiri’s abilities.  First off, 5cc for a 3 loyalty planeswalker that protects itself is a decent start.  But oh how it protects itself…  The +2 (and seriously, +2!) is so elegant – the minute I saw it, I instantly realized it’s what I was looking for with my red/white planeswalker in Generals of Dareth, but never could quite come to.  The -2 is very solid – also fairly similar, yet more balanced to the -3 ability from my version of Gideon.  Finally, the Ultimate does something that I’ve been playing with for a long time – Equipment tokens.

I love the idea of equipment tokens.  It’s one of the first things I played with, design wise, and I still am.  I think it’s a perfect concept for a tribe a red/white dwarves.  I love that now we have some official templating for this, and I’ll be applying this template to my existing equipment token designs.

All in all, I’m pretty pumped for Commander – I’ll definitely be picking up the white deck as soon as it’s available.  From a design standpoint, this planeswalker does everything that I’ve wanted to, but better.  Great job WotC!


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