Magic is a complicated game.
I really don’t have to tell you guys that. One of the hardest barrier to entries to this game is overcoming all of the language and all of the rules. But once you get past that, Magic’s still really complicated. With all of the timing issues and layers upon layers, there has to be an intricate judge program to make sure the high levels are adjudicated properly. And that’s not always the case.
So when you’re designing a card for a game that’s so complicated, sometimes you forget what goes where or if it all works. That’s why people playtest their works (I hope you’ve been doing that). Sometimes you need a little help. And that’s what I intend to do.
I’ve designed a cheat sheet (one of many, hopefully), that will help you guide yourself in the process. This isn’t intended to be an end all type of thing, but it’s here to help you when you’re breaking down the parts of the game. Even though the game has a huge amount of rules, luckily they can be dissected down to the common language building blocks to make the game work.
For this first part, I’ve tacked two of the very basic concepts of Magic: zones and parts of the card. Now, this isn’t a replacement for if you have a question about the rules, this is a cheat sheet that will help you make sure you’re on the right track. It covers:
- The different zones in the game
- Language used for when cards transfer between zones
- Parts of the card
- Card types
- Card supertypes
- Card subtypes
- And notes between the interaction between Zones and parts of the card
- Examples of what it this looks like on two cards
Like I said, it’s a cheat sheet. It doesn’t explain everything, nor do I believe it doesn’t have to. This was created that the reader has the basic knowledge about the game, but it’s a nice refresher as well.
You’re free to save it to your computer, link back to it, print it out, etc. But please don’t claim it as your own; not that I have any copyright issues with it since I’m using Magic cards, it’s just a jerk thing to do. If you have any questions, ideas, or feedback, please let me know. My contact info is on the page itself.
This represents version 1.1, as suggested by some of the changes by alextfish in the comments below. Added Artifact subtypes and lowercased all of the zones.