MTG Commander/Elder Dragon Highlander

The Multiverse, or a stab at storybook Magic
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Author:  Segrus [ 2012-Nov-28 8:32 am ]
Post subject:  The Multiverse, or a stab at storybook Magic

I'm not here to tell my life's story, but without some narrative this won't make complete sense. So I'm going to start at the beginning of this process and pray someone becomes interested:

This all began originally with Planechase. After it came out, I was very excited. I hadn't really had any experience yet with different formats (played a little Limited, but otherwise mostly what might be called very casual Legacy (tribal Flanking Knights isn't exactly what you would call competitive)), and so looking at it and the rules for Planechase felt very fresh. Unfortunately, most of the people in my area played two or so games with it, then promptly dropped it. Rolling the die four times in a turn and not getting either symbol turned everyone off. I couldn't let it go though, and proceeded to collect all of the Planechase I could.

Fast forward a couple years or so--new town, new play groups. No one had really heard of Planechase because not very many products came into the area. By this point, I'm very familiar with EDH because the wife named it her favorite format. And then I saw an article about the Horde format. I suddenly started piecing these ideas I had been having about how to make Planechase better and continue to keep those around me excited about casual/social formats through EDH, and came to realize Horde answered some of the problems I had been having whenever I tried to make things work out. From there, it became apparent I had thought of something so expansive and variable anyone could take the basic ideas and run with it. I don't want to brag, because that's not why I'm here: I'm here because only one person hasn't been so excited by it they wanted to play immediately, and the sole person wasn't ecstatic because they can't grasp the reasoning behind playing socially.

The idea is simple; however, lining out rules to dictate how it is played is complex (version 2.0 of the rules is 33 pages long). This takes a lot of different things to fully play, but the basic concept can be taken on its own and played without utilizing all of the other parts. Fully equipped though, I feel it is possible to make storylines and play your own characters. Enough of all that:

Planechase cards laid out to represent game board tiles. While I know about the Eternities Map format, this is a little different. Instead of the size of the board constantly changing, the board size is set from the very beginning; for instance, nine tiles arranged in a 3x3 grid. I again hesitate here, because I don't want to trample on someone else's idea. I don't believe this is unique, but my friends and I have had trouble finding something similar besides Eternities Map (which I actually didn't even know about until today). If you've done something like this, please comment and tell me about your experience. In addition to having a constant grid size each player can be in different planes at the same time, creating a pseudo isolation meaning cards such as Day of Judgment will only affect the players sharing the plane where Day of Judgment is cast.

To continue, the first problem has always been the die. So I created a new one: a 12-sided die with three new symbols (Cataclysm, Ancient Artifact, and Nexus). Second problem is where the Horde comes into all of this: how to deter combo players. Honestly, I have nothing against combo players in EDH as long as they put up that particular deck and find a new one without a focus on combos. In this format though, being separate from other players can allow for "camping" until a certain combo is revealed. To deter this, the rules only allow players to defeat their opponents by being in the same plane; to get in the same plane as another player, you risk revealing Horde decks. Currently, we play with three different Horde decks: Zombies, Eldrazi, and Phyrexians. Each of these hunt down players based upon game state (e.g. Zombie Hordes will attack the player with the most creatures; Eldrazi attacks the player with the most mana capacity). Due to the complexity of running three Hordes simultaneously, a single player pilots them all and doesn't play a real EDH deck (very akin to being the Game Master in D&D).

I understand this is probably a lot to take in, and a lot of commitment to play. As I have said, just about everyone I've met and explained this format to has been excited. It has appealed in every sense to the social player which exists in most of us. I would love to hear thoughts about this format, questions, and most likely some distaste from the peanut gallery. I'm trying my best to find problems with it and get solutions to those problems.

Author:  Segrus [ 2012-Dec-20 1:32 am ]
Post subject:  Re: The Multiverse, or a stab at storybook Magic

With the new die, the three symbols I added are these: Ancient Artifact, Nexus, and Cataclysm.

Ancient Artifact:
Whenever this symbol is rolled, the player who rolled it has a chance to get an otherwise unobtainable artifact from the plane they are currently located on. At the beginning of the game (and whenever a new plane is introduced--see the Cataclysm symbol below) a face-down "ancient artifact" is placed face down on that plane. When the symbol is rolled, if there is still a face down artifact on the plane, the player may pick it up and it immediately enters the battlefield under their control. These are all artifacts I've designed with the support of the players who helped me design the variant as a whole and test it. A couple of examples are presented below:
Sword of Prosperity and Sorrow

Fortified land is a 4/4 creature. It is still land. Fortified land has protection from Red and Green. Whenever fortified land deals combat damage to a player, untap all creatures you control and remove three cards in target player's graveyard from the game. Fortify {2}.
Artificer's Anchor
Legendary Artifact

The first spell you cast each turn has Hinge (the next spell you cast costs {1} less for colored mana symbol in the converted mana cost of this spell).
First through the door, then into the world.

This symbol is fairly simple. The first time it is rolled in a game, the plane that player is on becomes the "nexus." As long as that plane remains in the game, whenever the Nexus symbol is rolled again, the player who rolled it planeswalker to the "nexus" plane. The "nexus" is reset every time the plane is removed through Cataclysm or other means.

Whenever this symbol is rolled, a Cataclysm trigger is set at the beginning of that player's next turn. When the trigger occurs, all players remaining on the plane choose one of the following: 1) sacrifice two permanents; 2) tap all mana-producing permanents they control and skip untapping those permanents during their next Untap phase. Once this is completed, every player chooses an adjacent plane at random, and planeswalks there. The plane and the Ancient Artifact residing there (if any) are removed and replaced with a new face down planar card and Ancient Artifact.
**The choice was introduced because we found too many players at the beginning of the game were losing the land they played because they were unable to escape a Cataclysm. One turn mostly lost is better than several.

Author:  Segrus [ 2012-Dec-27 3:10 am ]
Post subject:  Re: The Multiverse, or a stab at storybook Magic

I would love to put the full guide up on here, but that seems very silly whenever I have a PDF copy of the guide which is easily email-able. If anyone would like to take a peek and see if it's for them, just PM me and we can go from there.

Author:  maiden77 [ 2014-Sep-07 7:22 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: The Multiverse, or a stab at storybook Magic

Aup mate, I wasn't active on here when you first posted this, but as a massive fan of planechase, and after talking about random MTG and cubes etc with you. I played a slightly modified version of Multiverse this weekend and it was awesome!

I added a face the hydra symbol to the die that I made and excluded the hoard idea, I also excluded the Nexus and the Ancient artifact for our 1st blast due to personal preference. The dual planes was left off, but I realised this was a mistake and it will definitely be added next time we play.

We cubed our decks, then played the varient and had so much fun. It stops one person roflstomping early from a god hand, functions to break up game states very well, and adds more great elements of randomness that has been lost in EDH due to popularity, power creep, and lack of creativity IMO. This helps immensely. We played with all 85 planes and phenomina that exist, I even managed to roll chaos on Tazeem and draw 11...mostly lands but still lol!

None of the planes broke the game, as people had to find targets and by the time they had, they could have lost advantage, or fallen prey to hydra etc.

I definitely will not play anything else on the weekend with my mates after this. Its awesome and balances power so nicely. It also reduces the chance of people staying on a plane to gain advantage as you can simply get to a plane or get the hydra to make them shift. Love it! Well done!

Author:  Segrus [ 2014-Sep-07 10:59 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: The Multiverse, or a stab at storybook Magic

I wanted to post this, because Shoe was kind enough to make a copy of the rules accessible to everyone on the Internet: Multiverse Magic.

Once anyone starts looking through this, please remember these rules were written a couple years when I first started posting on this forum--so they aren't the best. I've really had no reason to try making the language more clear or revise any of the...probably terrible rule formatting. You'll have to try to look past that and see it for what it really is: literally anything you want it to be. This only lays the groundwork for weaving Magic into your own story and give you some basic ideas about how to make it work for you.

Maiden, you're doing exactly what I hoped this would be: you've taken the elements which worked, discarded what didn't, and added your own flair! I'm very pleased it has gone so well for you. Thank you for the support, and keep having fun with it.

Author:  maiden77 [ 2014-Sep-09 12:14 am ]
Post subject:  Re: The Multiverse, or a stab at storybook Magic

Yeah man, I already have my next plans ready, and am currently refinishing my custom die, as well as preparing a special '5th player' horde deck, that can compete with a tuned EDH list, but only participates once a player is eliminated or somebody stumbles into it upon a plane. The grid increases the fun and the chaos a million fold or more. I can't recommend it enough, anybody who likes planeschase should play it right now, literally, stop what you are doing, and play Multiverse.

Also the rules looked fine to me, I have the PDF on my phone and mainly only needed to use it for the die rules as it was the first time playing, I couldn't always remember what a new symbol did.

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