Activated abilities in the graveyard

  • #1
    Okay, so I have been working on a graveyard-based set off and on for a little while and thought I'd run some cards by to see what people think. Any comments on power level, better wording, etc are welcome.

    I'm looking to slap Glory-like abilities onto cards at different rarities. I've been looking at cards with flashback and spellshapers for some time, but this is a direction I'm thinking of going now.

    Mankey 1R
    Creature - Goblin Warrior [C]
    1R, Discard a card: Target creature can't block this turn.
    Activate this ability only if ~ is in your graveyard.
    2/1

    Bzzzzz R
    Instant
    ~ deals 2 damage to target creature or player.
    3R, Discard a card: ~ deals 2 damage to target creature or player.
    Activate this ability only if ~ is in your graveyard.

    Whiskerdoo 2UU
    [U]Creature - Drake
    Flying
    2U: Target creature gains flying until end of turn.
    Activate this ability only if ~ is in your graveyard.
    3/2

    Blah 1G
    [U]Sorcery [R]
    Put a 3/3 green centaur token otb.
    3GG: Put a 3/3 green centaur token otb. Activate this ability
    only if ~ is in your graveyard and only as a sorcery.

    Okay, so it's not so much the cards I'm pitching as the idea and I'm looking for more, but feedback on the cards is appreciated as well.
    Last edited by The_Cooler: 12/9/2012 10:14:10 AM
  • #2
    R&D shies away from these because in too great amounts it adds a burdensome element to the game where you have to constantly be aware of every card in your opponent's graveyard to figure out things like combat math. This usually keeps these kinds of shenanigans entirely out of common and only sometimes in uncommon. Flashback is an exception — but flashback only happens once, and then the card is gone, so the attention issues are nowhere near as great.

    Speaking of flashback, Blah is a common with flashback that got the mythic stamp for some reason. Possibly the combination of being undercosted and giving you far too much reach.

    Whiskerdoo: This is another card that just gives you so much reach. Play this, hit once or twice, and if it dies you can just launch whatever fatty you have left. Forever and ever. Without even having to spend cards.

    Bzzzzz: Shock was never the top of the curve, but the ability to turn all your spare lands into answers after casting it once on turn 1 is just such a beating.

    Mankey: Probably the most reasonable of the bunch, but repeatable reach like this just seems too much.

    If I were to "fix" these, I'd go the simple route and just say have all the costs be "Mana cost, Exile ~ from your graveyard" to fix the "hidden board complexity" and repeatability issues. Of course, then you're horning in on Flashback's territory, so you'd probably end up having to put them on non-spells.

    Vengeful Ghast 3B
    Creature — Spirit (U)
    Flying
    3B, Exile Vengeful Ghast from your graveyard: Target player sacrifices a creature.
    2/2

    Haunting Centaur 1GG
    Creature — Centaur (C)
    4GG, Exile ~ from your graveyard: Put a 3/3 black Centaur Spirit creature token onto the battlefield.
    3/3
    Last edited by movexig: 12/9/2012 10:20:20 AM
    Short list of things that have irrevocably ruined Magic FOREVER: the b&r list, the reserve list, fnm, the stack, damage on the stack, black-bordered core sets, new card face, 2004 legend rule change, futureshifted cards, tribal, planeswalkers, mtgo, reprinting lightning bolt, damage not on the stack, new deathtouch rules, no mana burn, eldrazi, not reprinting lightning bolt, dotp, hexproof, phyrexian mana, thragtusk, commander, 2013 legend rule change, newer card face.
  • #3
    Blah is actually supposed to be a normal rare, but that's irrelevant. Also forgot to put "Discard a card" in the cost of the last two cards.

    Anyway:
    Yeah, I think you're right about the complexity issues. Makes sense not to put them on commons for that reason. I was looking for a mechanic that could replace flashback, but I guess if these cards were as common as I want flashback cards to be, it could be pretty awful.

    With this in mind, I could see putting this sort of thing onto rares and mythic rares just because it's still a gy matters set.

    Anyone have any other ideas?
  • #4
    Quote from The_Cooler
    With this in mind, I could see putting this sort of thing onto rares and mythic rares just because it's still a gy matters set.


    I think it's fine to have a cycle or two of rares or something along those lines. Try and see if you can find some interesting territory to make them feel different from the original Incarnation cycles.
    Short list of things that have irrevocably ruined Magic FOREVER: the b&r list, the reserve list, fnm, the stack, damage on the stack, black-bordered core sets, new card face, 2004 legend rule change, futureshifted cards, tribal, planeswalkers, mtgo, reprinting lightning bolt, damage not on the stack, new deathtouch rules, no mana burn, eldrazi, not reprinting lightning bolt, dotp, hexproof, phyrexian mana, thragtusk, commander, 2013 legend rule change, newer card face.
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