Welcome back to Cube of Force, the article series where we build a Dungeons and Dragons themed Magic: The Gathering cube step-by-step. Last time, we helped our party gain some experience and level up by going on some adventures! Today, we will start by asking the question: why do players actually go on adventures?
They are hunting for treasure, of course! Maybe they just want to improve their quality of life, or maybe they need to pay back the loan to rebuild their inn after it was struck by a meteor, but they definitely want to line their pockets with more gold regardless. I took a look through all of the cards that made or cared about treasure to date, or even had treasure in their names, for possible additions. This added removal and interaction spells like Depths of Desire, Spell Swindle, and Hornswoggle, all of which make treasure tokens. Treasure Cruise, Treasure Hunt, Treasure Trove, and Seize the Spoils will help the team draw cards.
This also adds one Saga I neglected in my previous article, Forging the Tyrite Sword. To get the full use of this saga, we definitely want to include Halvar, God of Battle in the cube, but also have an equipment subtheme. Fortunately, that started well here with repeatable sources of treasure such in Prying Blade and Goldvein Pick.
Equipment opened up a whole new world of options, and I will probably visit it again in Odds and Ends throughout the series. I just quickly looked for equipment that cared about our creature types, and creatures with our relevant types that cared about equipment, and found some gems I was excited to include. Kaldheim recently had a cycle of equipment that created tokens to wield them, and it so happens that Elven Bow, Giant’s Amulet, and Valkyrie’s Sword created relevant tokens. I also found both Relic Axe and Obsidian Battle-Axe cared about warriors, Diviner’s Wand cares about wizards, and Cloak and Dagger cares about Rogues. Rogue’s Gloves was also an obvious include on name alone, as was the most obvious include yet in the Sword of Dungeons and Dragons. We are also able to pickup some excellent creatures to wear the equipment in Goblin Gaveleer, Champion of The Flame, Militant Inquisitor, and Stonehewer Giant!
In most adventures, the party doesn’t just stumble onto treasure. They either get it from defeating challenging foes, or by Investigating. Investigation is one of the core skills in Dungeons and Dragons Fifth Edition, and the Investigate mechanic from Innistrad block represents it here well. We gain more flavorful interaction with cards like Root Out, Confirm Suspicions, Gone Missing, and Humble the Brute. Also tied into investigation is exploration. This is represented in the Explore mechanic with Emissary of Sunrise and Path of Discovery, as well as in flavor and support of our equipment subtheme with Explorer’s Scope.
You can also find treasure by going on quests. We looked at some quest options when I wrote about Chulane a while back, and there are definitely some quests we can make use of so far. The first one that jumps out is Quest for the Holy Relic, which will support our newfound equipment subtheme. Our cube is also very creature focused with its four different tribal synergies, so we are sure to get some recursion value from Soul Stair Expedition. Ior Ruin Expedition will help draw more cards, while both Safewright Quest and Khalni Heart Expedition will help fix mana.
Speaking of fixing mana, one of the investigation cards that jumped out to me was Weirding Wood. This card has a strong synergy with one of our earliest inclusions: Ley Weaver. It occurred to me that we could combine effects that untap lands with land auras to be able to ramp the non-green party members very effectively in a support role. That made Fertile Ground an obvious choice, while Verdant Haven and Gift of Paradise have the side benefit of also gaining some life. My favorite of these besides Weirding Wood, however, has to be New Horizons since it also supports our counters subtheme.
Odds and Ends
In our growing subtheme of “Cards that invoke the feeling of actually playing Dungeons and Dragons,” I added Adventuring Gear, Adventurous Impulse, and Sleep, which is literally a spell from Dungeons and Dragons. I am no expert on the all of the available spells, so please feel free to comment on other spells that happen to share names with Magic cards. I also missed Tajuru Paragon in my “Creatures that have all of our relevant creature types” searches.
This cube is an ongoing project planned to be completed with the release of Adventures in the Forgotten Realms. You can track progress on the cube here.
Paul, The Rocking Bard