Coerce Mechanic Jul 28, 2019 5:07:44 GMT
Post by ahemtoday on Jul 28, 2019 5:07:44 GMT
So I have a cost reduction mechanic where, rather than pay a creature's full price, you get your preexisting creatures to drag it out onto the battlefield kicking and screaming. They take damage in the process, which you'll need to assign strategically to make sure they're still safe during combat. Here's what I settled on:
Coerce N [cost] (You may cast this creature for its coerce cost. If you do, it deals N damage divided as you choose among creatures you control.)
Okay, cool. That's four lines of reminder text for a flavorful mechanic that matches with the world I'm trying to create and has interesting strategic implications. Well, it would be. But there are a couple issues I ended up running into.
- For starters, you can just cast it while you don't have any creatures and bam, now you have a 4/4 for 1G or something. The player needs to deal all the damage.
- If you do have creatures, you can just stack all the damage onto a tiny 0/1 and you've basically ignored all but one of those damage points. The player can't be able "overkill" a creature with this.
- None of that even matters because you can just cast the creature after combat and, barring direct damage spells, all that damage is pointless because it gets washed away at the end of the turn.
Coerce N [cost] (You may cast this for its coerce cost before combat. As an additional cost, it deals N damage divided as you choose among creatures you control without dealing more than lethal damage.)
Ouch. It seemed so elegant on paper, but now my beautiful baby boy has become a six-line clunker that makes the damage an "additional cost to cast" thing on top of an alternate cost to try and make it mandatory to use all of it (which I'm not even sure works as written); has to shorten "As an additional cost to cast"; and has "without dealing more than lethal damage" in it, which looks weird on a card even if "lethal damage" is in the Comprehensive Rules glossary. Basically the only change that doesn't horribly break the flow is the "before combat" bit, which should probably be a little longer but I was squeezed on space?
Can this mechanic ever hope to have the elegance I thought it initially would, or is this parenthetical behemoth an inescapable fact of reality?