The Great Designer Search 2 Finalists: Scott Van Essen

Posted in Feature on January 5, 2011

By Staff

Scott Van Essen

Malgareth, the UnderPrison

In an underground prison, death is the only escape.

Common Card #1
Fungoid Harvester
Creature - Fungus
Sacrifice CARDNAME: Add one mana of any color to your mana pool.
Art: A mass of moving mushrooms and lichens consumes itself releasing multicolored streams of light.

Common Card #2
Black Market Smuggler
[Black Market Smuggler -
Creature - Human Rogue
Whenever CARDNAME deals combat damage to a player, draw a card, then discard a card.
Art: A human carries contraband in a cable car suspended from the cavern's ceiling.

Common Card #3
Decay into Rot
[Fungoid Birth -
Destroy target non-black creature. Put a 1/1 black fungus creature token with "Sacrifice this creature, target player loses one life and you gain 1 life" onto the battlefield
Art: An ogre is halfway rotted away. His consumed flesh begins to take a new form.

Common Card #4
Shackled Rabblerouser
[Shackled Mediant -
Creature - Elf Warrior
CARDNAME enters the battlefield with two -1/-1 counters on it.
Whenever you cast a creature spell, remove a -1/-1 counter from CARDNAME.
Art: A muscular elf stands in a crowd, the last remnants of energy bonds still visible.

Common Card #5
Enraged Goblin
Creature - Goblin Berserker
R: Rage 3 - CARDNAME gets +3/+0 until end of turn. Sacrifice it at the beginning of the next end step. Play this ability only once per turn.
Art: A goblin has impaled himself on a Sentinel's spear, but still landed a killing blow.

Common Card #6
Fist of Chains
[Iron Knuckles -
Artifact - Equipment
Equip 1
Equipped creature has intimidate.
Art: Glowing magical chains, the remnants of shackles, are wrapped around a pair of hands.

Common Card #7
Fury Unleashed
[Makeshift Blade -
Target creature gets +3/+0 and gains first strike until end of turn.
Discharge R - You may cast CARDNAME for its discharge cost by removing a counter from a permanent you control.
Art: A restrained ogre snaps apart his magical bonds, stunning and wounding his guard.

Common Card #8
Stalwart Gatekeeper
Creature - Human Knight
Stalwart - If an opponent controls more creatures than you, CARDNAME gets +1/+1 and has vigilance.
Art: A knight stands alone against a horde of murderers, slaying two as others stream by.

Common Card #9
Disperse the Mob
Return target creature to its owner's hand.
Stalwart - If an opponent controls more creatures than you, return up to two target creatures to their owner's hands instead.
Art: A mob scatters as two creatures in front are swept up in vortexes of magic.

Premium Card (Mythic Rare)
Mylormyx, Arisen
[Mylormyx, Arisen -
Planeswalker - Mylormyx
+2: Creatures you control have persist until end of turn.
-1: Put two 1/1 black fungus creature tokens with "Sacrifice this creature, target player loses one life and you gain 1 life" onto the battlefield.
-9: You gain an emblem that says: "Whenever a creature you control goes to the graveyard from the battlefield, each opponent sacrifices a permanent"
Art: A giant creature of fungus and rot. Small fungoids spawn from his torso.

Uncommon Card #1
Enclave Aegis Field
Whenever a creature deals damage to you, put a -1/-1 counter on it.
Art: Several creatures charge through a ring of magical fire and are scarred by it.

Uncommon Card #2
Shackled Tinkerer
Creature - Human Artificer
CARDNAME enters the battlefield with two -1/-1 counters on it.
1U, T, remove a -1/-1 counter from CARDNAME: Search your library for an artifact with converted mana cost 1 or less and put it into your hand, then shuffle your library.
Art: An artificer shapes his bonds of metal and energy into a magical trinket.

Uncommon Card #3
Insatiable Rot
[Noxious Shroomguy -
Whenever a creature you control is put into a graveyard from the battlefield, target player loses 1 life and you gain 1 life.
Art: A puddle of rot on the floor engulfs a corpse and exudes noxious looking fumes.

Rare Card
Conduit of Power
At the beginning of your upkeep, put a charge counter on CARDNAME.
Whenever you cast an instant or sorcery spell with converted mana cost less than or equal to the number of charge counters on CARDNAME, you may pay U. If you do, copy that spell. You may choose new targets for the copy.
Art: A wizard channels energy from a giant overhead crystal into two beams from his hands.

Basic Land Card
Art: A forest of giant mushrooms. Motes of energy rise from them like spores.

Token Card
Goblin (Red)
Creature - Goblin
Art: A crudely armed goblin erupting from a small cave.


Watermarks are gone. The card concepts should be sufficient to indicate faction.

The pack shows the mechanical core for each faction.

Natives now have all the sacrifice effects and death triggers. I also brought back persist, as it plays well with their flavor, their style of grinding advantage, and both sacrifice effects and death triggers. Despite their complexity, the fungus tokens are important so players can assemble a critical mass of sacrifice effects that they can use without feeling bad. I show a goblin token also to indicate that the natives are small but overwhelming in numbers.

Prisoners have the primary -1/-1 counter interactions, entering the battlefield with them and removing them with triggers or for effects. Countercast (now Discharge) is now a cost reduction mechanic to create shields down moments, get rid of the colored permanent requirement, and because being free really restricted what effects I could use.

Sentinels (formerly Watchers) are perpetually outnumbered, reflected in their Stalwart ability. Additionally, I'm pushing the Sentinels towards playing more non-creature spells to create a pull towards building different decks (particularly in limited). The reward for having few (but not no) creatures is one mechanism. Conduit of Power is another.

Many people questioned why the Natives were important. Mylormyx is the answer to that. He is a native who achieved his planeswalker spark, and then is leading his people in revolt. He is the destabilizing force that sets the events of the block in motion.

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