You Make the Card 4: Card Name

Posted in Making Magic on August 5, 2013

By Ethan Fleischer

Ethan Fleischer works for Magic R&D as a designer. He can sing, but not dance, and is an indifferent fencer. He lives near Seattle with his wife, three sons, and mother-in-law.

Welcome back to You Make the Card, the process whereby YOU, the readers of, work together to design a Magic card, to be printed in a future set. Last time, you all voted on which sketch you'd prefer to see turned into a finished painting. We're still waiting on Matt Stewart, the artist, to finish the final art. But we don't have to just sit around; there's work to do!

This card started out with no name at all. For a while it had a playtest name, Revenge of Necromancy. Then it had a concept name, Waste Not. Now it's time to make the card's final, real name, which will appear on the printed versions of the card when it is released.

As with the rules text submissions, you will send in your best idea for the name of the card. As with the previous submissions, you may only submit one idea, and you must be age eighteen or older. Unlike the previous submissions, you may submit from any country.

There will be two fields. In the "Card Name" field, type in what name you think the card should have. In the "What was your inspiration?" field, describe how you came up with the idea for the card name you typed in the previous field.

Now, I'll give you a few tips to help your ideas have a better chance of making it to the Top 8, where people will vote on the eight best card names. A list of Dos and Don'ts, as it were.


  • Do communicate the concept. The card's name should help people to remember what it does.
  • Do keep your names pronounceable. You can use unusual words, but they should have a clear pronunciation.
  • Do make the flavor of the name fit with the flavor of the sketch.


  • Don't overexplain the card mechanics. This card does three different things. Trying to cram all three of them into one name, such as "Traumatic Necromancy of the Mana Knowledge," will create an awkward mouthful. Find a name that sounds cool and evokes the overall concept of the card.
  • Don't focus too much on the concept name. "Waste Not" is just something we used when communicating with the artist. Come up with your own cool concept.
  • Don't use real-world proper nouns. "Chicago Recycling Plant" would not be in keeping with the fantasy flavor of Magic: The Gathering.


Get creative! I can't wait to see what you come up with. We'll accept submissions until 8:59:59 p.m. PST on August 6. Then it will take us some time to sift through all of the submissions and put the Top 8 on the website for a vote. See you in a few weeks!

YMTC Vote #4: Submit Card Name Thanks all of you who voted! The polls are closed and we are tabulating the final results. Come back Monday for the next step in You Make The Card 4!

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