Novea Remastered

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continued...
Wed, 2015-10-28 22:19
Reality Glitch
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In Traditional western myths (upon which most of M:tG is based), the element of water is associated with aspect of the mind just like air. Water does have an aptitude for trickery as it is often a means of bypass whether it by water itself or what it carries. Water can be subtle, most notibly as ice, but liquid water in a resting state is often considered tranquil as opposed to the resting state of fire. Sure it's not as rigid as the more literal mental qualities, but blue is also about reacting and adapting, which is all the more easily accomplished with the fluid nature of water. Yes, water can be chaotic, but not on it's own like earth or fire. Yes, water can destroy, but not with neither the speed nor ubiquity of red's elements unless acted upon by red. One solution I can see is make the Merfolk blue with Red mana symbol as part of the cost for the abilities. Yes, I share your opinion that a shark feels more green (maybe red) than blue, but would only be represented as such in either an underwater set/set with anunderwater theme in all colors, or as requiring blue in some way. (3/3 green Fish creature for 2 mana symbolGreen mana symbolGreen mana symbol with defender and "Blue mana symbolBlue mana symbol: Untill end of turn, this can attack as though it didn't have defender and can't be blocked.")

I never said you coldn't use the sun in red, in fact I find that to be more of a grey area as the sun is both literal light White mana symbol and figurative fire Red mana symbol. It's the transgression of the light/dark dichotomy that's the issue. Night/dark/shadow is the domain of black and even the flavor text on your cards supports the association of lacking in light with the philosophy of black. The is one color/abilities are another mechanic would help alleviate this as well. Also, why are the white nymphs Tieflings or otherwise demonic?

Card specific nitpicks
Mother Nature/Mother’s Disciples/Mother’s Pet/Mother’s Blessing/Nature’s Guard: These are Green mana symbol in flavor by very definition of the color. Mother Nature, her blessing, and her guard can be slightly tweaked mechanically to fit monogreen or leave it as is and make it Black mana symbolGreen mana symbol, or rename it and it's associates to something indicating the personification of the concept of death.

Rylei Tidemother: Same issue as with the majority of red water. Plus, if you're going for the Cthulhu mythos, it's spell with an apostrophe instead of a "y".

Terra Nova: So it's Magus of the Cradle but for lands? Seems a bit much.

Dodgy Infant: This would make not only a good Merfolk, but also a great example of water-based trickery as blue often "washes away" spells and abilities like that.
Actually, now that I think about this one, I like Monkey's as a blue counterpart to Ape.

Charming Nereid: This feel very blue to me in effect. An example of blues slowness by making the opposition faster by comparison.

Creeping Naiad: Again with slowness. Swap p/t and make it draw then discard and you've got a spot on blue card. also monored evasion is preventing a subset from blocking, this prevents a subset from being blocked/prevents all but a subset from blocking which is blue's territory mechanically.

Slippery Capuchin: [url=http://gatherer.wizards.com/Pages/Search/Default.aspx?action=advanced&text=+[assign]+[its]+[combat]+[damage]+[as]+[though]+[it]+[weren%27t]+[blocked]]Thorn Elemental[/url]'s ability is strictly monogreen. 1 mana symbolGreen mana symbolBlue mana symbol or Green mana symbolBlue mana symbol would be a more appropriate cost.

Prowling Gorran: Deathmask Dancer, Warlord’s Crest, and Deathmask Initiation all grant menace which came in Magic Origins, the same time landwalk went out. I don't know if they've stop printing it like banding, fear, shroud, and intimidate or if it's just been unkeyworded like landhome; either way the card's printed text needs to be changed.

Nadei the Wavecaller: Monored can't reseract lands, that's green's territory (occasionally white's too). It needs to be red-green and/or black-green, monogreen will also work, especially since the set is about pushing the color pie.

Captivate/Elusive Monkey: These desperately need flavor text.

Midnight Shrieker: White does NOT get life loss.

Raging Riverbed: This is way too defensive for red. Green and/or white fits better.

Distracted and Drowning: That is just a really clunky name. Also, red doen't stop attacks, that's a white/blue.

Skull-Crowned Chief: It would probably work couldn't be blocked or as long as it's attacking, but it's fine as is.

Stingflinger: The correct wording for that is "Tap symbol: ~ deals 1 damage to target creature and and 1 damage to that creature’s controller."

Sun’s Glory: this should probably be rare.

Way of the Wind: 4/1 flying should probably by red but the set's theme probably let's it work.

Sylph Spawning: Probably want to add "may" to that ability but it depends on how you intended it to work.

Gorru Tracker: this is either green or blue unless it also costs life to draw that card.

Lightcatcher Nymph: Flavor and mechanics are not green. White or blue are a better fit.

Voice of the Masses: the name is UBER monowhite. Voice of Ambition maybe?

Lotusheart Gorran: I'd bump this up to mythic rare considering the power-level-to-lines-of-text ratio.

Sunweaver: White almost never gets evasion, especially something that good.

Spellbane Vulpine: not only are Foxes more often white then green, prowess-but-better is not going to show up in green.

Goreswimmers: the mechanic is Black/red mana symbol and the flavor is Black mana symbol both with the name and with black being second in the elemental water game. I think this card should be monoblack or black-red hybrid.

Bloomhorn: "At the beginning of your precombat main phase, add X Green mana symbol to your mana pool. Where X equals ~’s power.

Creekcrafter: This is a mono blue effect for sure, and before your say "BLOOD MOON", I can direct you to all the monoblue land type manipulation.

Undine Hatchery: Black mechanically and blue flavorwise. The latter can be streched to make the card monoblack.

Deteriorate: "Destroy target creature. Return target creature card with power less than the destroyed creature’s power from a graveyard to the battlefield under your control."

Petaldiver: This is better in black since it punishes prowess.

Sunstage/Cloudbank/Corpsebed/Bloodriver/Seedshrine: This cycle is not common, maybe it can be pushed down to uncommon, but not common.

Sunlight Charmer: "Only at a time you could cast a sorcery."

Buzzing Flitter: Green does not get flying any more. I suggest swapping the colors of the card and the ability.

Dance of the Nymphs: The ability is green or black-green, monoblack only returns creature cards.

Seafoam Souls: Overcosted, look at Goblin Arsonist.

Gravelocked Seeker: "Whenever ~ blocks a creature,"

Veiled Charmer: Lure effects are generally green, though this is more like provoke so it shouldn't be a problem.

Sunrise Meadow/Sea Of Skies Beyond/Gorran Graveyard/Eroding Bank/Elrayin the Manaroot/: This looks like you're trying to make a cycle here, but there's actually two: a legendary that uses creation counters (Should change "C, tap: Add CC to your mana pool." to "~ETB tapped." and "Tap: Add C to your mana pool.") and a nonlegendary (Needs "Tap symbol:, add 1 mana symbol to your mana pool.").

Wed, 2015-10-28 23:58
Cajun
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@White:
The point is that the lost nymphs are still white, they are just not the Lotus's white. Only a few, such as Lightwrecher and Soulflare Nymph, actually break out of what most the Multiverse considers White. Have you read Kamigawa? Konda is a plenty white character, but he is undeniably the bad guy of the story. That doesn't make the kitsune or even the samurai the antagonist by default though.

The 'tiefling' look came about because Telthona did a run of awesome satyrs, succubi, tieflings and so on that all felt like white cards with a dark twist, with callbacks to the Sundancer's satyr origins.

@Black:
This will hopefully become more apparent come set 2, but on Novea, life is corruption. Novea is unnatural. All of it's first inhabitants are more mana constructs than anything. In the eyes of Novea, life itself is greed, it is pain, it is power. Mother Nature does not seek to keep things as they are, she seeks to bend them to her own will. Many of the inhabitants of Novea aim to 'own the world'. The Sundancers believe this will bring harmony, the Sylphs simply want to know everything, and Rylei wants to do it just to see if she can. Mother Nature and her children want it so that no one else can have it.

Specific card comments into the spoiler.

Spoiler:
Rylei's name inspired by it sure, but isn't supposed to be the same, no.

Terra cost 5 green, is a lot easier to get rid of than a land, and lands are honestly harder to scale than creatures.

Charming Nereid: It's a suicide red sorta card, like Mass Hysteria. Red speeds out the 2/2 turn 1 but has to pay for it.

Creeping Nereid: So reverse everything it does and now it's a blue card? Sounds fairly red :P. She originally had 'except by red creatures' because both islandwalk and mountainwalk seemed off, and I felt Merfolk was a decent in between.

Slippery Capuchin: Indeed a largely green ability, which is why it's 1UU for a 2/1. It's a weaker unblockable though, so I see that ability as secondary blue (whereas it's super trample in green)

Prowling Gorran: Menace has been around since Fallen Empires, ya know? Prowling Gorran was kind of the last hurrah for landwalk (there were a few more that were cut) and he's got flavor as a kind of outcast Gorran, Prowling out by his lonesome instead of doing the flashy Deathmasks.

Nadei was originally gain control of, which I think can work in red. It wasn't working as flavorfully as I wanted (her flooding out the land), so it changed to that which can bring your own stuff back or steal the land. Nadei is one I woud like to work on some more.

Captivate/Elusive: Indeed, i think that note is still in the set file. That's something that'll get hit at the end when I have some more time to write some longer ones for them.

Midnight: I mean it does but I get ya. I have it on the block to make it a tax/punish mechanic and more in white, but is one I'm more open to changing.

Raging Riverbed: Red can be plenty defensive. Green and white tend to get permanent creatures out of enchantments as well.

Distracted and Drowning: What can I say, I love screwy red names. Stopping the attack is fairly out of red but I liked the flavor feel of it, am not opposed to just stopping the block though, probably dropping it to Red mana symbol on the way.

Sun’s Glory: In two player, a worse Festival, which is a worse Holy Day in practice. Your opponent gets to pick the creature, so if they have a creature they can pick their own, if they don't then all your creatures get in free anyway. It's a multiplayer card with some two player use, it's not some super-niche or super-limited screw rare.

Way of the Wind would like you to meet Inkfathom Witch

Sylph Spawning was part of a few different cylces at different times, most recently it wanted three power for 2 mana symbolBlue mana symbol, which was too good for a creature or sorcery, so I delayed it via enchantment. The cycle mostly fell apart, but I like it as is.

Gorru Tracker: This has certainly played tug of war with green. Perhaps replace the tapping with paying life?

Voice: I like that idea. 'of the Masses' came about when your lord was based on it's power, so it made more sense then. Added.

Lotusheart and friends: Might be mythic in a bigger set, but only have 10 mythic slots, which go to the Avatars, legendary lands, unique Melodae and the splashy Sunfist and Infinite Dreams. Have no issues with these at rare though.

Creekcrafter: Blue typically only changes one land at a time though, and doesn't have to die for it.

Sunstage and friends: May change them to spell lands, which do fine at common. I think they're weak enough effects for common tho, maybe up the cost a point on Sunstage/Cloudbank

Buzzing Flitter: Still a blue card, and blue gets flying. Hummingbird just has to Little Engine That Could to be a real bird. The G w/ U card is Mistcharm, which doesn't fit as well as a U w/ G card.

@Elrayin: The rarity split results in 3 uncommon cards and 2 rare cards that wouldn't fit into a nice color cycle, so I thought a staggered land cycle would be cooler, given that blue and green had a story-relevant Legendary place in the first tree and the entire empty plane outside Novea. As for mana, I want these in untapped (So you can use their other ability right off), and able to tap for their color, since these are basically upgraded basics. Can't have T: Add C and 1, T: Add CC makes splashing way too easy so it was changed to this. If/When we come back to Novea, I expect to see the other half of the creation cycle.

Cards I think you misread:
Skull-Crowned Chief stops everything smaller than him from blocking anybody, just by being around. It's meant to be a blessing and a curse.

Sunweaver is a 0/1 with no protection on the swing, and white is second best at flying, it gets evasion plenty. I can see it being a powerhouse if you let it get loaded with auras and equips, but pretty much every color should be able to stop that before it happens.

Spellbane Vulpine triggers off your opponents spells, it's not green prowess

Petaldiver cares about permanents. Sure Enchantments and Artifacts trigger prowess, but I doubt that's what red's usually triggering it with.

Stingflinger, Bloomhorn, Deteriorate, Sunlight Charmer, Gravelocked Seeker wording's fixed, although your wording on Bloomhorn is off, check Karametra's Acolyte. I thought I had already changed it to that but here we are. Changed Deteriorate to not counter itself if the destroyed creature gets Diminished as well.

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Thu, 2015-10-29 03:24
Reality Glitch
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Countercounterpoints
Charming Nereid: Maybe. I still think it's better as a monoblue aggro card considering that it doesn't grant YOUr stuff haste. Plus a monoblue aggro achetype in this block fits the theme you're going for and can be done without breaking the color pie.

Creeping Nereid: O.K. poorarguement, but that evasion ability is blue not red.

Prowling Gorran: Yes, I know, Goblin War Drums. My point was you don't have to remove it if at least write out the effect for the landwalks. (This can't be block as long as the defending player controls a Swamp or Forest.)

Nadei: S=If you want to keep her red that it has to be steal from the battlefield stealing from the grave, especially in combination with land destruction and haste put her squarely in black.

Midnight: If you gave the player the choice to pay life to stop an effect, that would be sufficient, but not straight life draining.

Distracted and Drowning: Like Goblin Kaboomist. Yeah, you do need to remove the "can't attack" or ad white to the cost; flavor is a poor excuse to break the color pie, bend it sure, but not break.

Sun’s Glory: In two player, a worse Festival, which is a worse Holy Day in practice. Your opponent gets to pick the creature, so if they have a creature they can pick their own, if they don't then all your creatures get in free anyway. It's a multiplayer card with some two player use, it's not some super-niche or super-limited screw rare.

Way of the Wind: That ability both requires black and is unblocked creatures only.

Sylph Spawning: So it is your intention to have it be mandatory? I can see it as a may effect and not altering the cost. Would make it even bluer by having it be a "when you need it" kind of card.

Gorru Tracker: That's what I said, though you could certainly tap and pay life if you feel it so.

Lotusheart and friends: If this is only set 1 of 2 or 3, why is it a small set and not a large?

Creekcrafter: Key word here is "typically" (no pun intended); remember that you're pushing boundaries here.

Sunstage and friends: Either all spell land or all tap lands, you've got some of each.

Buzzing Flitter: Yes, blue does get flying that's why it doesn't work. The ability that gives it flying is activated with green which NEVER grants flying. activated abilities have to match the color of mana activating them, not that of the card they're on unless they only have generic symbols.

Uncommon/Mythic Rare split: Add too more uncommon lands and three more Mythic rare legendary lands. Having 155 cards in a set isn't going to ruin it.

Skull-Crowned Chief: Oh, so your creatures as well?

Thu, 2015-10-29 03:50
Cajun
Cajun's picture

You seemed to have missed whatever you were doing on Sun's Glory.

Spawning's fine as a may if you wanna hold onto your spawning bed iguess.

@Lotusheart: This is more set 0 of 2. I may do a set 0.5 or rerelase as a larger set at some point, but it is not the current plan.

@Mythic: Small set only gets ~10-11 mythics in order for the distribution to be right, which is more the problem than an extra five cards. Is the split cycle really bothering you that much? I thought it was neat.

And yea @Skull. Nothing with power <4 can block. Good potential to kill someone, but who?

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Thu, 2015-10-29 05:07
Reality Glitch
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I meant to remove the Sun's Glory comment.

So this is only part of a large set that you may not even release the rest of?

I'm curious as to how that works.

Sun, 2015-11-01 21:43
Cajun
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Ah, not quite. It's more like a Homelands and a few cards from Coldsnap. I have a few ideas for Novea 2, with the off-color cycles being airlifted out of it, but they are less important to the story that's just beginning to unfold. Novea 2 would likely also be a small set, so I may just make it an 'expansion pack' to make Novea a full 300 instead of two 150s.

EDIT: Work on the set has been held up for a day or so, but this is the perfect time to check some replacement cards.
The draining white creature has been moved to Novea2 and been replaced by Moonlight Agent.
Goreswimmers has been moved to Novea2 and been replaced by Devious Naiad.
The Sunstage lands have become spell lands. One I'm most uncertain of is Seedshrine.

Looking for some critique on them before the set file with a few other changes goes up, likely tomorrow if all goes well, alongside a chapter that will look deeper into the world of Novea, as well as dropping a few of the ideas from Novea2. The collector number there should give an idea of about how undeveloped the set itself is, but there is a budding story.

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Tue, 2015-11-03 03:04
Cajun
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And here is likely the final set file. Quick rundown of changes:

Spoiler:
Rylei's pump ability changed from 'each Merfolk' to 'each land'
Sunlight Dancer has gone from Hexproof to damage prevention on your turn.
Raging Riverbed now becomes a 4/3 and stays that way.
Gorru Tracker changed to 2 life instead of tap.
Buffed Seafoam Souls
Midnight Shrieker and Goreswimmers have been airlifted to Novea2 and been replaced by Moonlight Agent and Devious Naiad.
The Sunstage cycle are now all spell lands.
Added a cycle of Basics w/art
Wording fixes throughout the set.
Flavor text added to about a dozen cards, including Captivate and Elusive Monkey
The last two Warlord's cards have been changed to Deathmask since the Warlords have long left the file.

And to close us off, a chapter that's been on my mind for most of design. I didn't suspect I'd actually get to it, but I had the chance to write it this week and went for it. I hope it ties off some of the loose ends any of you may feel the backstory has left, while laying a few more and a card for a sequel if it happens.

The Dance of the Nymphs
The smoke from a dozen fires spiraled up into the starless night. Eight Gorrans danced within the ring of fire, weaving in and out of the blazing pits. EIght shadows stalked across the fire’s glow, eight masks gleaming as they turned to face it. Nearly every eye was lost in the motions, following the tale of life and death that was the Dance of the Nymphs.

Two distant eyes watched only in fear as the chieftain, known only as Skullsplitter, crept up to the flames, hunched over as the man could barely hold up his own weight, further held back by a suit of bones. Gorrans began to chant as he brought himself upright before the fire burning at the center, his arms carefully cradled around his chest. With a final stomp from the dancers, all the noises died except the crackle of the flames and the cry coming from Skullsplitters arms. Mele buried her head into the tree trunk before she could watch the drop she had seen a hundred times before. The fire billowed. The Gorrans cheered. The chanting began again.

Mele held her voice. The dance had almost passed, if they could hold out a few more minutes, he would be safe. The child clinging to her leg whimpered. “Hush.” She turned to scan the trees behind them, but the night had turned the forest darker than her Mother’s heart, and not even the moon was there to help her this time. Keeping track of the forest’s nightmares would be easy enough even now, but it wasn’t the nightmares that worried her. TIny hands left her leg and her focus snapped back in an instant, turning back around to grab his arm. She crouched down to him, keeping her grip. Less than a year old and the little ones were already trying to get themselves killed.

“Shhh…” she cooed. “Two more. Two more and we’re done.” She tried to wipe the tears from his face, only managing to smear the dirt already there. “But we must stay quiet.” The chanting swelled again and the dancers grew erratic, the earth shaking with every step of the eight. Then, silence. Mele hugged her child close as the tribe erupted again. Seven. The Dance demanded eight. They could hold out for one more. There were others lined up to throw their own into the fire. She could be missed. They would be missed, she demanded her thoughts. A glow creeping over the tree sent her confidence running. She turned to the ghastly lantern. The hunched Gorran loomed over the two, his mask of bark hiding any emotion that might have been there.


Illus. by Thiago Almeida

“No.” she whispered. His free hand landed on her shoulder. She looked up to the wooden mask, pleading with the uncaring face. His hand tightened and threw Mele into the dirt, scooping up the child while she was disoriented. Mele roared through the shock, jumping back to her feet. The man had already disappeared into the blackness, but there was only one place he could be going. Mele charged towards the chieftain.

The chants of the tribe built up a final time, now with every Gorran in the forest joining in, every sound filling the forest with dread. The eight dancers now gathered around the center fire, circling around it as their erratic motions recreated their first shambling steps from their Mother’s Cradle. Mele’s screaming was lost in the sea of noise flowing from hundreds of Gorrans, stomping, singing, dancing, calling for the final sacrifice. The hunchback Gorran lifted up the child by his leg, still squirming and fighting for freedom as the blood rushing through his head clouded the world around him. Skullsplitter’s mass of callus he called a hand grabbed the year’s firstborn by the weakly swinging leg. While nearly triple the size of those before him, the monster Gorran barely noticed the extra weight. He set off to the fires again.

Mele ran roaring towards the two men, neither seeming to react to her, Skullsplitter not even breaking his gaze from the blazes. Steps from the chief, the lantern Gorran swung around, his fist following through into her gut.

The sky spun above her. Her head was screaming. Her son was screaming. Pain was nothing to her. Mele was back to her feet and sprinting before the lantern Gorran could strike again, heading for the ring of fires Skullsplitter had already passed, already before the center she realized too late. The dancers stomped and the world went silent. Mele’s legs gave out under her outside the outer ring.

The Gorrans cheered.

The scene replayed over again in her head. She tried to force it out with another memory, only to feel the happiness burning away and the fires filled her eyes again. She thought back to the day his eyes finally opened, only to find smoke pouring out. When he finally spoke, and the chant filled her ears. Every memory relived the moment. And the Gorrans cheered.

Mele finally collapsed from pain and exhaustion, only now realizing she had been running down the forest. Dozens of cuts attempted to join the chorus of pain pounding through every muscle and bone. Her body was pain now. But she knew pain. She forced herself to ignore it, giving herself something to think about that didn’t devolve into the flames rising as...she tore her attention to the trees. Mele had no clue where she had ended up. Anything could be hiding in the forest if she had gone the wrong way. Tiny dirt trails wound around tree trunks. The trees were intact, nothing trampled or broken. The Terra’s behemoths had not been here in a very long time. Mele pulled herself back up, pushing herself forward for no other reason than to move. The dirt beneath her quickly turned to mud, the mud eventually giving way to waters as black as the night. She traced the edge of the swamp, following it around to a hill overlooking the pit.

Familiar sigils jutted out from the swamp, each of the carved swords marking no doubt dozens of Gorrans thrown below. Her eyes widened and her head spun back to the dead trees behind her. She had found her Mother. She could only pray her Mother had not found her.


Illus. by Jorge Jacinto

Mele continued around the swamp. THe cheering and flames had left her mind, now fully replaced by panic, every nerve screaming to get out of the forest, get out of the swamp. She didn’t know how far her Mother’s reach extended, but she knew that nowhere in these woods was safe to her. There was no looking back now.

It wasn’t until Mele rounded to the opposite end of the graveyard that she heard anything, a simple twig snapping that echoed louder than a thunderclap in the silence. Mele froze. The Dance reminded the Gorrans every year of what the Mother was capable of. She wished against her sanity that she was back, walking into the flames to follow him rather than face this. A soft claw grabbed her shoulder.

“Clof aga nae sha cf?” the winged creature chittered uselessly at her. Mele slowly turned to the white claw and followed its feathered arm up to its strangely soft yet inhuman face, blended with a bird’s head but not unlike her own. More creatures crashed through the swamp, not knowing or not caring in whose home they tread. The bird woman chittered more sounds at the newcomers, some even more twisted visions of humans, birds, and other monsters.

Finally, one stepped forward, a creature that looked almost human, except for two horns twisting behind her head and two withered wings hanging behind her. “Why are you here, Gorran?” she demanded.

Mele looked to each of the nymphs, trying to decide if this was her mercy or her judgement until one word left her throat. “Escape.”

The creature laughed. “Aren’t we all?” She looked back, chittering at the others. Attention now off her, Mele tried to sneak forward. “Fear not Gorran.” the nymph chimed before turning back to her. “We are not of your swamp. We are of the glorious Lotus!” she announced, throwing her arms skyward. Only the night met her call. “Or, were. The Lotus may not take kindly to seekers.” a sigh escaped the creature.

“For better or worse, we have chosen our path. While it may look dark now, we have seen and learned far beyond any sundancer.” The nymph seemed to have recovered already, turning back to the others. “And no matter the darkness, the sun lies before us. Hope can never die.” The nymph chittered a bit before turning to Mele again. “Gorran, we have chosen our path in life. Will you chose yours?”

Mele looked westward out of the swamp, towards the moonlight beginning to filter through the trees near the marsh’s end. “What is out there?”

“Wonder beyond the swamp, surely. Others, like us. Hills that climb to touch the sky. Beyond, who can know?”


Illus. by Noah Bradley

Mele stood in the muddy divide where the plains met the forest. The sun was rising between two mountains ahead of her. She looked back, all but one of the sunseekers already hidden away in the darkness. Esycf stood alone, her withered wings raised for both Mele and the sun.

“Good luck Gorran! May your travels meet us again one day!”

For those that liked the set, I should be back in a few weeks to showcase Relidon, which is ~80% complete at the moment. If you hated it, well I promise I'll be nicer to the color pie next time. For those of you who liked Novea, I doubt we've seen the last of it.

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fluffyDeathbringer wrote:
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Tue, 2015-11-17 17:50
Reality Glitch
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Tue, 2015-11-17 18:08
Cajun
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Seems to be a dead link. I think you mean this, which I already had tabbed when I get a moment to read it, though much of Novea's color bleed came from sliding the colors around and poking the limits along with it, as opposed to me not knowing what's what.

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Wed, 2015-12-30 10:02
Cajun
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The sun rises on the wicked and sets on the righteous. The world falters under the eye of the Lotus. Nature offers the nymphs escape and mortality. The sun turns its head. Every heart makes a choice.

Coming Soon...

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I dunno, Cajun has a habit of doing Dubiously Working new rules stuff

Thu, 2015-12-31 15:59
Robot_Face
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WHOA, that's weird. I really like it. It's asking to be played in a multicolor deck, but it's less effective on multicolor spells.
Also, wouldn't that be really powerful in an artifact deck (or with the new devoid mechanic)?

I'm not a real robot, but I have a real face!

Fri, 2016-01-01 00:00
Cajun
Cajun's picture

Well, young dancer, what will it be?

Esycf turned from the dark grin of the goddess. Her flock had already accepted, trading their scales for feathers as their Mother made them one with her creations.
“This isn’t what I wanted. Not what we wanted.” she whispered. “This isn’t who we are.”

It would seem that it is. A viny black hand extended to the dancer. Maybe you just haven’t accepted it.

“No.” Esycf raised her sword, but kept it mindfully distant from the Mother. “You may have swayed a few. But you haven’t won. This isn’t over.” Her wilted wings flared as she backed away from the corrupted goddess, backed out of the ancient graveyard.

Of course not. She cackled at the retreating nymph. No, this is just the beginning.


Daybreak: Set 2 of 2 in the Novea Block

After countless years of apparent peace among the Sundancers, their star had suddenly forsaken them. Their harmony had shattered. Their isolation, broken. Their prosperity, turned to agony. Nymphs could not escape reality. As the world around them grew vicious, they were offered three choices. Suffer, fight, or turn to mortality.

Suffer, Fight, and Die

Unlike the dancers, the sylphs thrived in the absence of Aerolius. Without her guidance, many more grew erratic and destructive, but without her restraint, their power grew as well, and the spirits of the sky have learned to twist the land for themselves.

Earth, Wind, and Fire

Following the path of a Gorran outcast years ago, many of the humans would look to the world beyond their Mother's swampland. As the tribes shrunk, the remaining Gorrans found themselves overrun by the monsters of the forest. Sometimes taken in by the beasts' caretakers, and sometimes the nymphs were taken in by them.

Life, Death, and Beyond

Rylei too descended to her trench of Ralora, her presence still known but her face seldom seen as the sylphs dominate the skies above the seas. With their leader uncertain, the naiads divided between conquest and civility, pulling the merfolk from the surface to fight amongst their own beneath the waves.

Glamor, Fortune, and Claim

With Mother Nature on the move and the naiads distracted, the nymphs and their new allies are free to take a stand against the corrupted goddess overtaking the plane. What the dryads may lack in subtlety and tactics, they more than make up for in brute force and numbers.

Might, Will and Execution

The set file is here! Trying something a little different this time. There'll be more to come over the next week, and I'm sure you'll all find broken things I've missed, but as of now, Daybreak the set is finished, though open to changes.

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Sat, 2016-01-02 06:50
Cajun
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The cries of the corrupted sundancers cut deeper than her sword ever could. Every day they became more primal, the pure nymphs fading into the wild birds they had ensouled. Some of the harpies called to her, begging to be taken back. Some only squawked, butchering the tongue of the nymphs as their lips hardened to beaks.

Esycf finally forced herself from the wildlands, out of Nature's hold, out of the harpies' cries. Out of the forest, and onto Mosecf. She hadn't seen the path in years, not since the escaped Gorran woman. Surely, no one had walked this path in years now. What poor fools still danced for the Lotus wouldn't take the Sunseeker's Path now, all desperate for some approval, for the suns blessing that would never come.

She knew that now. The Lotus, if it was even there, was not going to step in. If she, if Novea was going to survive, she would have to fight. All of them would have to fight. Even those that had been cast out by the sunseekers...

Find Ka Soma
Mosecf and friends

I knew I wanted to do Daybreak back when I first posted this thread, but for the longest time I couldn't figure out how to make the two work as a block. Novea wanted to be a mono-color set, and Daybreak wanted to be a wedge set. A while back I had made Heretic for something else, but only recently realized it might solve the Daybreak problem, by encouraging two and three-color decks with mono-colored cards.

Primal was another older mechanic that returned to balance the oddity out, allowing you to skip redundant land drops (For when you draw your sixth consecutive Forest in a UBG deck) or to hold your position if you don't get land (One land hands are far more keepable with a Charging Dryad). These abilities are a bit problematic in larger sets, but are pretty bearable in these smaller ones.

'Land drop as a cost' is often seen as problematic for the user. When that turn 2 3/3 is responded to with a Bolt, you're more behind that usual. So I looked for ways to make Primal work as more than just a cost reduction, such as offerring a different form or color of payment, the second paying nicely with Heretic, or by having it on cards that are harder to two-for-one.

And finally using it to supercharge spells

Reminder that Instants can be cast for their primal cost at any point during your turn. "This Too Shall Pass" can boardwipe at instant speed on your turn, but can never do it during an opponents turn, even you have a Teferi on a Vedalken Orrey casting Quicken.

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Sat, 2016-01-02 07:06
WindyDelcarlo
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I expect these lands to be breakable in multiple formats

Sun, 2016-01-03 03:24
Cajun
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Well, they do take some time to charge up, and most are a one-shot. Currently the Green mana symbol and White mana symbol stick, but those might change jus to fit the cycle.

Though I did think about changing the charging some more. Either the shorter but slightly memory-dependent "Sacrifice: <Effect>. Only activate this ability if (ten or more creatures died/you were dealt 10 or more damage/ten or more creatures attacked) this turn." or checking at the end step for a counter, and maybe dropping the magic number from ten since you can never speed them out in one turn.

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Thu, 2016-01-14 04:53
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Story the Third wrote:
The skies were abuzz. She was back. The pitiful, horrible little nymph was under the sky. Many of the sylphs could feel her presence, her anger infect the air long before they would see the Slayer. The spirits knew emotion, the regret that formed them, the resolve that forged the plane, the rage that birthed the world. But the Slayer, Soma, was no emotion, not one they could know. She was lonely hatred, defined only by lacking everything the world stood for. Somehow, she still lived. Somehow, she had returned.

Those who didn't know her purpose fled as the deathly white nymph continued her march. Those that did know, whispered. Cold winds blew across the plains, Ka Soma ignoring the sylphs even as her followers hesitated. So they knew she was here. Good. Her voice crackled to life for the first time in years.

"Tell your taintress we're coming then! I don't want to waste time looking for her." Her voice cut the sylphs worse than her presence. At least until her claws reached them...

The chilling winds turned, rushing back into the short safety of their swamp. "All clear Ecy." she growled to herself. "Now take them down."

While the harpies are the most prominent group to accept mortality, they are not alone, with some sylphs becoming wights at her touch, becoming more vicious, but like the harpies, soon lose everything they were, becoming nothing but a cold whisper until they finally fade away. At least this isn't as painful as Ka Soma's claws I suppose...

Wightclaw and friends
These five make up the only ally-colored spells in the set (and a third of the set's gold cards) representing the influence of the Avatars or their absence. Lapidify is back in pie-friendlier colors, and has a cool secondary use in Daybreak now between Primal and Heretic.

Speaking of which, they also allow for a surprisingly relevant reprint...

Spoiler:

Hopefully more consistent updates this week. Hopping to be finished by Saturday since I was gonna launch a new set next week before this whole extra set materialized...

Got no response on creation lands, so currently changed them all to sacrifice. Also changed Dreameater from above, which should show up in a day or two.

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Thu, 2016-01-14 18:15
Reality Glitch
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Hornwing: needs flavor text and p/t.

Goreswimmers: Did you mean for them too not have an evergreen keyword ability? I understand why not. (Might break the triggered ability if given evasion and the only thing tying the cycle together is being THE ONLY allied-colored cards in the set.)

Lapidify: This really should be a creature to tie-in better with the rest of the cycle, but considering the context it might be fine. What I don't get is: why turn it into a Mountain? The card isn't red and the only other president for a creature (or other nonland permanent for that matter) becoming a land instead of its other types is Dryad's Song which makes it a Forest. And before you go saying its because of a theme of elemental-earth, Green and White both get that as secondary, ESPECIALLY in mechanical regards to lands. Making it a Forest Plains or Mountain Forest Plains would fit the colors better.

Thu, 2016-01-14 21:48
Cajun
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@Honorwing: Huh. Should be a 2/2, must have added it after a save or something.

@Gore: Gets pretty ridiculous with any evasion and the evergreen thing wasn't meant to be a theme. Though Lapidify also doesn't have one.

@Lapidify: Lapidify means 'to turn into stone', card was designed for the name is why it's a Mountain. It can also be used to make red mana in a pinch, which is nice for casting the odd red spell for a Heretic trigger. The ally color cycle started because this and Goreswimmers were kicked from the first set, so I didn't see it as the odd one out at the time.

There was an actual tie-in, though perhaps not obvious. The Harpies, Wights, and the Goreswimmers are all the results of the corruption, while Lapidify and Forserval is the slowly uniting force of Nymphs, Elementals and Merfolk fighting back. Perhaps reworking Forserval and the harpy's flavor text will help with that.

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Sun, 2016-01-17 09:49
Reality Glitch
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Again I say that Forests and Plains better fit a GW stone theme. And Red is the one that gets the "mana in a pinch" spells so you're not helping your case. If you uped the cost to 2 mana symbolGreen mana symbolWhite mana symbol and had it turn the target into a land with all basic land types that would work better for both Green/Green-White and Heretic.

Tue, 2016-01-19 04:28
Cajun
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Story the Fourth wrote:
Sunlight rolled over the mountains at Soma's back, the sun slowly peeking through to watch the rejected nymph's march without lighting her way. Whether it was afraid of what she had to do, or it wasn't rising for her own benefit didn't concern her. The Lotus had proven itself powerless. She just had to convince everyone else. Some followed her now, but she doubted even Ecy would follow her there.

Even with the rising sun, darkness surrounded the nymphs, leading into the swamp where light went to die. She couldn't help but feel at home in the night clinging to the rotting trees. The monster that called herself life must not be here.

"Where are you cowards!" Soma roared. Her voice seemed to ruffle the trees. The dozen sunchasers behind her would only watch as Soma walked deeper into the birthplace of corruption. She had no time for their fear.

Oh, you foolish child. the swamp responded. I was merely giving you a chance to escape.

The sylphs returned, the cold winds of the dead tearing through the swamp, snapping tree limbs in their wake. But it was still owned by a spirit of fear. Soma's claws glowed red as she slashed at the sylphs rushing around her. The Mother's touch has not made them any less resistant to pain. They were just lucky enough to die eventually.

"No, that's what you were supposed to do." Soma growled, her eyes darted across the darkness. Her flock held back. The sylphs hesitated. So much untapped potential surrounded her. She needed that power again. The red glow traced up from her claws, winding up her arm as she drew power from potential. Burning magic flared out as she struck the wind again. She felt the screams of dying sylphs. She felt the touch of something darker.

Very well then.

Her strength faltered as the air grew still. The silence lasted only a second as screams escaped the nymphs, still standing at the swamp's edge. Soma finally allowed herself to turn around. A monster neither man nor tree yet somehow both towered over the sunchasers, one of the nymphs already crushed and limp in its fist. The nymph began to wither away to green light. Soma growled and lunged for the creature. As long as the nymph was alive she had to try.

The creature didn't break its gaze from the frightened nymphs as it raised its staff and swung it into Soma's head.

"Is it ready?"

No.

"That'll have to do then."

The Sentinel
The Tide Swells
Hokay, we're officially behind schedule, but luckily it has some buffer built in for that. Wasn't quite sure how best to continue, so the two entries were condensed to one and the exchange at the end. Means some of our characters lose screentime, but Daybreak has been mostly improv compared to the coming sets anyway.

Elsewhere, we have fixed and flavored Honorwing, and the revised Dreameater as Daybreak's Dreamwalker promo, and hopefully Daybreak will be wrapping up over the next few days.

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Mon, 2016-01-25 08:23
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Story the Fifth
The avatar of rot smirked as the pure white nymph sunk below the muddy black waters of her swamp. If the creature ever managed to wake up, she would feel a fate far worse than the blow to the head.

Pity you wouldn't give in. We would have been unstoppable together. She turned to the sentinel, frozen in the position it had finished the nymphs. I'll just have to settle for being unstoppable alone.

The harpies responded with a shrieking symphony, which had become her favorite song, the chorus of her victory over the sun's children. The wave of sylphs that followed was less encouraging.

What do you mean they're back? she hissed at the winds. I though the witch had been taking care of!

The air was wrong. It was too alive for her swamp. It wasn't just the other nymph. Not even the witch would be able to do that. The sentinel churned back to life behind her.

Who else is there? she roared through the sylphs. The swamp was stirring at her anger. She needed eyes, and the chittering whispers and harpy shrieks were failing her. Her sentinel forged ahead toward the rush of the spirits. She shifted her attention to the awakening swamp, trying to find who else was stomping through.

In that moment, the forest had her attention. In that moment, the forest struck back. The sentinel had only a second to react before the elk stampeded in.

The avatar tore back to her surroundings, curse already forming against the elementals. She roared at the sylphs, but the harpies' screams drowned out their cries as they descended on their Mother. She knew none of her now mortal thralls could touch her, but if the witch was out there she couldn't afford a second without her sight. With a glowing swipe, those daring to get close dropped, rotting away as they hit the flooded ground. Flooded...

Rylei's wave knocked the words from her head. The witch was already here. How they managed to get here she couldn't worry about it now. She needed to get the swamp moving. The cries of the harpies continued to ring in her head. She felt the witch nearby, drawing another wave. She needed her Heart.

The avatar retched, using the naiad's second attack to help free the Heart. The water was just an annoyance now. The Heart would take care of that. She drew back as the black lump that fell from her grew into a nymph of her own.

The earth and water withered at the Heart's feet. The witch would figure out the Heart soon enough, but it would be more than enough time to bring her down again. Her consciousness slipped into the swamp.

Where are you. the swamp growled. There was nothing there. Whoever was out there was twisting her swamp against her. Seila...

She snapped back. If they were with Seila... she needed to leave. They... they were actually uniting against her. She felt a twinge within her. No. She wasn't going down yet. She turned to the Heart, only to see it falling under the corpses of divebombing harpies. Another twinge. They weren't afraid. Was this was the witch had felt? Was this...
-----
The taintress hesitated. For the first time in too long, Esycf felt a smile. It was actually going to work. It was now her turn to finish it. She lifted her sword, a good deal heavier than before after Rylei's touch. Whether it would catch the Lotus's attention...

"How about now?" she shouted to the dazed avatar. "Is it over now?"

You think this changes anything? she boomed back. Have you forgotten where you are?

"I think you're the one who's forgotten." she raised her sword, the once slender blade now a broad sword adorned with a golden sun across the hilt, gleaming even in the low light of the swamp. "You're poison on sacred ground." The swamp seemed to glow brighter with every word. The sundancer was filled with a confidence she had long forgotten, and she marched to the avatar. Though she was surrounded by allies, only now was she not alone.

And what are you going to do about that with just that little thorn?

Even with the waver in her voice, the avatar wasn't scared. Not of her at least. "Oh this little thing?" The sword flashed up, now glowing brilliantly against the two souls. "Just a little something like this." She lunged, driving the blade into the uncaring avatar.

And a lot... of... gooood

Mother Nature began to dissolve where the sword had struck. The Lotus had finally stepped back in, turning the enchanted blade into a star. A star that didn't seem to care who wielded it. Esycf felt herself fading away. She knew Mother Nature might survive. Her death, her disease, her fear might live on. But Esycf would go knowing she fought back. She would be the first sunseeker to find her peace.

It's Over!Final File
After far longer than intended, Daybreak draws to a close in the only way it could. Lesson learned, don't launch the set before the stuff is written, even if Daybreak on Jan 1 is awesome.

Now, my next set is actually ready to go, and was supposed to launch this week...but Daybreak just finally ended. Kinda weird to jump so quickly to another set, but that one has been waiting in the wings for a while now. We'll see how that goes, tho I don't want to wait too long because of sets beyond, like a set using DFC's which will unfortunately be going live after Shadows of Innistrad.

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Mon, 2016-01-25 19:56
jacqui-pup
Featured Set Editor - Best Set of 2015 - Community Award
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I love a lot of these cards.

Thunderstride is curious, though. Shouldn't it read "another" spell?

[center]"It's exciting to create something that demonstrates how clever you are, that you pushed in a direction that players didn't anticipate. The problem is that the point of game design isn't to be clever, it's to create a great game." --Mark Rosewater

Tue, 2016-01-26 08:29
Cajun
Cajun's picture

I was alright with counting Thunderstride for it's own trigger since it does check every end step. It is one of those developmental tweaks where the cardpool decides which way it should fall, but I'm thinking 6 or 4+landdrop is already pretty slow for breaking formats without needing a pair of spells to attack once.

Edit since I'm editing elsewhere anyway: Before we send off Daybreak, I'll leave behind some of my notes from the set to finish out what may have been unclear or unsaid.

Daybreak
Daybreak will explore what Novea only hinted at, the effects of the Mending on the five emotion avatars. Being fragments of the psyche of a pre-Mending Planeswalker, each of the constructs contained a fraction of his power, though none alone could replicate a spark to leave. Nonetheless, the Mending hit these five, just like the rest of the Multiverse, but other than presenting them as creatures, Novea shed little light on the change.

"The Lotus": The empty void of Novea struck Skirnon. The Lotus was born from Skirnon's combined desire of order and chaos of life, and brought life to the plane. The strange selfish-selfless spell combined with Skirnon's conviction caused it to manifest as the unstable Lotus. The conflict of order and chaos that controlled the Lotus finally overruns it as the Mending seized his control from him. Feeling powerless without warning, the Lotus withdrew from Novea, abandoning the sundancers below.

"The Terra": Created from the Pathomancer's desire for growth and change, the Terra Nova shaped the planet, inspiring the walker to grow the plane further. When the Mending stripped the Terra of its power, Novea's growth ceased. While the avatar would do its best to keep the world in bloom, the world suffered, and the Terra suffered with it.

Rylei: Slowly learning to control his power, Skirnon would create Rylei from his notions of freedom. Lacking most of Skirnon's restraint, Rylei decided she needed the entire world to be free for herself. She would clash with the Terra over the spread of her seas until the Mending took her power to expand. Humiliated by the Multiverse, Rylei would strike out against the surface until being driven back to Ralora by Mother Nature.

Aerolius: The fourth emotion was the most calculated of them all, born from curiosity and a need for knowledge of all the world's secrets. Aerolius sought to one day extend past Novea, to the worlds she knew hid beyond the stars. When the Mending finally ended her dreams, her carefree spirit died, and no one knows if the avatar is still alive.

"Mother Nature": The final emotion was accidentally created from Skirnon's far as he attempted to destroy his plane. She managed to manipulate the planeswalker and chased him away from the plane. While her power faded with the Mending, the other four managed to share an emotion, each filled with fear that would empower the final avatar, allowing her and her children to grow beyond the scope of the rest of Novea. The longer the others remained hidden, the stronger she got, extending her reach to the abandoned sundancers and sylphs.

Daybreak occurs as Esycf finally rises above the reign of fear, turning Rylei and finally the Lotus against her to deliver a crippling blow. Esycf would trade her life for the attack, which would not eradicate Mother Nature. But her example would unite the dryads, merfolk and nymphs against Nature, breaking her dominance of the plane and letting the sun rise again.

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Mon, 2017-10-23 00:15
Cajun
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Oh you pitiful dancer.

Did you really think that's where the story ends?


Normal Set File
If you have my M15 Altered Template from here, use this link instead.
M15 Altered Set File
Thanks to fluffyDeathbringer for editing all our happy little typos!

What's All This Then?
For the past few weeks, I've been reviewing and reworking Novea and Daybreak into a single set for an MSEM submission. While clearing up the mechanical shortfalls, I've fixed up many of the structural and flavor issues that were in the first drafts. I have condensed the 300 cards of Novea/Daybreak into 240 cards, heavily reworked 30 of them and added 30 new ones, giving us a one-shot 270 card set, about the new standard. The set still does not contain planeswalkers, but many other M15 sensibilities have been added, including Story Spotlights.

So What's New?
marioware's persevere has been added to 13 cards, becoming Novea's third mechanic with Heretic and Primal.

Some cards have been heavily reworked, some to the point of being completely new cards.

Before and After

In addition to ~65 practically new cards, there are 90 cards with various updates to suit the environment of MSEM.

Glimpse of Beyond

So Hey, X + Y? Breaks Magic
I know how faulty one-man balance teams are. I've been trying to double check as much as I can, but if you find something way out of line, something aggressively underpowered, or just plain nonsensical, lemme know so I can fix it up before submitting to MSEM.

PT Novea?
If there's interest, I would like to run a Novea two-years-laterprerelease. Lemme know if you'd like to join and if Sealed or Constructed would be better for a one-off set. If it takes off, I'll make the Lackey plugin, and have the winner choose a promo to be added for the MSEM. We haven't seen it in a while but something like a guest design in Relidon Redux could be done too if you're into that.

Relidon Redux
And as you can probably guess, we'll be following this train for a bit. Relidon Redux is a more complete overhaul, and should have a competent draft format, so it'll be a bit before it shows up, but it and Vaask Revamped are on the way.

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Tue, 2017-10-24 08:03
Cajun
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Post-post changes:

OLD -> NEW

Primal Entomb is out, Primal Tutor is in. Entomb is a scary line to cross, even at Sink into the Tar prices, so we have uncrossed it. Diabolic Tutor on the other hand is a safer card without much representation in MSEM, and Deceitful Tutor may be able to turn that around.

Turns out Koisoul Diver v1 goes infinite with a ritual and bounce spell. Oops. Recursion ability has changed to a prismatic pump and copy ability reduced to white, blue, black, or green instant or sorcery spell.

New Merfolk token + Primal Reminder

In the interest of making the transition to Lackey as smooth as possible, one of Novea's last dodgy artworks was replaced and a Primal reminder was added for all of you asking 'did I play a land this turn?'

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