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Cube of Force: Loose Ends
By BardRockCafe Posted in (DND) Dungeons & Dragons, Blog, Magic the Gathering on July 22, 2021 0 Comments 9 min read
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Welcome back to Cube of Force, the article series where I build a cube step-by-step. This article will serve as the conclusion of our Dungeons and Dragons themed cube, and ultimately the end of the first “season” of Cube of Force. You might recall that last time, I mentioned we still had plenty of space to fill in the cube after Adventures in the Forgotten Realms came out, and that we would also have to tackle proper color balance now. My goal was for the cube to be 750 cards, not including the basic lands. Without further ado, let’s dig right into the new additions.

One subtheme I held off on in the earlier installments of the cube because I wasn’t sure it would ultimately fit was Food, a mechanic introduced in Throne of Eldraine that was later expanded upon in commander products and Modern Horizon 2. Food is part of Dungeons and Dragons, with there even being a spell to Purify Food and Water. The fairy tale flavor with which Eldraine presented the food mechanic also presented us with gems like Turn into a Pumpkin and Bake into a Pie. Food also has the side effect of adding life gain support, which I decided last time I wanted to ensure was at least available in Selesnya. Modern Horizons 2 also gave us Academy Manufactor, which produces food and two other tokens the cube already cares about: clues and treasure! 

Speaking of clues and treasure, I decided that I finally had room to include creatures outside of the four supported creature types in the cube. That let me add several creatures that supported major cube archetypes I had excluded before, like Tireless Tracker for repeated Investigate triggers, and Deadeye Plunderers as a repeatable source of treasure tokens, to name a few examples. 

For the vast majority of my other additions, I wound up looking at all the “Good stuff” I had held off on including in the early stages of cube design so I could focus on flavor first and foremost. Below is what I wound up adding:

Academy ManufactorAngrath’s RampageAbrade
Akroan ConscriptorBlood for BonesAct of Heroism
Akroan Line BreakerBond of DisciplineAppetite for the Unnatural
Arena AthleteBond of FlourishingBack for More
Battlefield ThaumaturgeBond of RevivalBake into a Pie
Battlewise HopliteBramblecrushBattlefield Promotion
Bygone BishopCasualties of WarBeast Within
Centaur BattlemasterCosmotronic WaveBedevil
Chaos ChannelerDevouring TendrilsBlunt the Assault
Danitha Capashen, ParagonDisentombChant of Vitu-Ghazi
Deadeye PlunderersDomri’s AmbushDead // Gone
Delina, Wild MageDread ReturnDesperate Lunge
Draugr RecruiterDreadboreDestructive Revelry
Embereth Shieldbreaker // BattleDisplayEmpty the CatacombsElvish Fury
Eutropia the Twice-FavoredExhumeFiery Temper
Feywild TricksterFlame WaveFortifying Draught
Forsworn PaladinForeboding FruitFracture
Goblin BangchuckersForever YoungGenerous Gift
Goblin BookieGruesome MenagerieHero’s Downfall
Goblin KaboomistHammer of BogardanInfuse with Vitality
Goldspan DragonHaunting VoyageInvoke the Divine
Grim FlayerLate to DinnerJust the Wind
Heliod’s PilgrimNever // ReturnLash of Thorns
Hero of IroasRead the BonesLight of Hope
Hero of the GamesRecoverMolder
Hero of the NyxbornRepeating BarrageMoment of Heroism
Heroes of the RevelReturn from ExtinctionMoment of Triumph
High Priest of PenanceSanguine IndulgenceMomentous Fall
Hoarding OgreScale the HeightsMortality Spear
Hypnotic Sprite // Mesmeric GlareScheming SymmetryMortify
Inkfathom InfiltratorStir the GraveNarrow Escape
Intrepid OutlanderSurge to VictoryNatural End
Ironclad SlayerTime to FeedOblation
Kalain, Reclusive PainterUnearthOnce and Future
Kemba, Kha RegentVictimizePledge of Unity
Koll, the ForgemasterVindicatePulse of Murasa
Kor SpiritdancerVirtus’s ManeuverPutrefy
Labyrinth ChampionVolcanic VisionRaise the Draugr
Loathsome TrollAll That GlittersReaping the Graves
Lyzolda, the Blood WitchAlpha StatusRescue from the Underworld
Meletis AstronomerAncestral MaskRoad // Ruin
Nadaar, Selfless PaladinAngelic GiftTandem Tactics
Nightshade StingerArmadillo CloakTerminate
Nullpriest of OblivionAuramancer’s GuiseTrue Love’s Kiss
Old GnawboneBind the MonsterTurn into a Pumpkin
Order of Midnight // Alter FateBoar UmbraUtter End
Phalanx LeaderBrilliant HaloBearded Axe
Pheres-Band ThunderhoofCapashen StandardBehemoth Sledge
Pitiless PlundererCartouche of KnowledgeCrystal Slipper
Pixie GuideChosen by HeliodGiant’s Skewer
Planar AllyCruel RealityLightning Spear
Plundering BarbarianCurse of BloodlettingMage Slayer
Prickly BoggartCurse of ChaosMask of Riddles
Ruthless KnaveCurse of EchoesScavenged Blade
Satyr EnchanterCurse of ExhaustionTormentor’s Helm
Savvy HunterCurse of Fool’s WisdomWitch’s Oven
Secret DoorCurse of InertiaSenseless Rage
Setessan Battle PriestCurse of PredationSentinel’s Eyes
Setessan ChampionCurse of Stalked PreySetessan Training
Shadow StingerDawn’s ReflectionSixth Sense
Shadowmage InfiltratorDivine FavorSnake Umbra
Skullport MerchantEel UmbraSpider Umbra
Sram, Senior EdificerEphara’s EnlightenmentStarlit Mantle
Staunch-Hearted WarriorEscape VelocityTalons of Wildwood
Steel SquirrelEthereal ArmorTrapped in the Tower
Storm-Kiln ArtistExoskeletal ArmorTrespasser’s Curse
Storrev, Devkarin LichFrenzied RageUlvenwald Mysteries
Sylvan ShepherdGhostly TouchUndying Rage
Tenth District LegionnaireGryff’s BoonUnflinching Courage
Tireless ProvisionerHyena UmbraUnquestioned Authority
Tireless TrackerIroas’s BlessingRune of Mortality
Tomebound LichKeen SenseRune of Sustenance
Toralf, God of FuryKenrith’s TransformationSage’s Reverie
Triton Fortune HunterManiacal RageScourgemark
Triumphant AdventurerMark of SakikoZalto, Fire Giant Duke
Tuya BearclawMarket FestivalZameck Guildmage
Valduk, Keeper of the FlameOn Serra’s WingsZhur-Taa Ancient
Varis, Silverymoon RangerOne with NatureZombie Ogre
Varragoth, Bloodsky SireOrdeal of NyleaRune of Flight
Vengeful ReaperOrdeal of ThassaRune of Might
Wall of FortuneRancorWilling Test Subject
Wandering TroubadourReins of the VinesteedXorn

Much like when deck building, making cuts to your cube isn’t nearly as fun as adding those shiny new cards. But, it is a necessary evil. I started by looking at the multicolored cards in the cube, and decided that I would trim each down to just the 10 cards I felt supported the cube’s design best. I also decided to cut the three lands I had included, and trim colorless cards down to 50 total. As much as I liked the two 5-color cards and the one esper card I had added, I ultimately decided I didn’t want to directly support 3-color or more deckbuilding in the cube given the mana base, and to remove those cards as well. After making all of these cuts, I wanted to evenly distribute the remaining cards in the cube, leaving 120 cards in each color.

Of course, this is just my personal cutting methodology. Making cuts from your cube is going to be a personal process based on preference more than actual design, so feel free to deviate from my choices if you’re building along. I do recommend trying to maintain a roughly equal color balance, however, and inclusion of multicolored lands in your cube if you want to support use of cards that are three or more colors. Ultimately, the cards I decided to remove are as follows:

Academy JourneymageCouncil’s JudgmentChemister’s Insight
Aegar, the Freezing FlameEmeria’s CallChilling Trap
Aphetto AlchemistFabricateClairvoyance
Aphetto GrifterInscription of InsightGrip of the Roil
Bishop of RebirthMinds AglowHallow
Chief of the EdgePlea for PowerHurl Through Hell
Chief of the ScalePolymorphInvulnerability
Cleric of Life’s BondResurrectionJump
CloneSafewright QuestOverwhelming Denial
Conclave MentorTreasure HuntSilence
Custodi SquireGiant’s AmuletSplit Decision
Deathcult RogueNeurok StealthsuitTeleport
DemilichRiptide LaboratoryThieves’ Fortune
Doubtless OneRogue’s PassageCharisma
Enclave CryptologistTreasure VaultFall of the Thran
Eternal of Harsh TruthsToothy, Imaginary FriendInvisibility
Ezuri, Claw of ProgressUmara EntanglerKiora Bests the Sea God
Faerie DuelistUmara WizardMonologue Tax
Faerie VandalVampire CharmseekerTeleportation Circle
Gempalm SorcererVedalken HereticSpellweaver Duo
Glasspool MimicVerduran EmissaryStonybrook Banneret
Gwafa Hazid, ProfiteerVigean GraftmageSurveilling Sprite
Hada Spy PatrolWar Priest of ThuneTazri, Beacon of Unity
Herald of AnafenzaScroll ThiefNaru Meha, Master Wizard
Kargan WarleaderSefris of the Hidden WaysPir, Imaginative Rascal
Leonin Relic-WarderShardless AgentPriest of Iroas
Mardu HordechiefSimic GuildmageRadha, Heir to Keld
Mizzix of the IzmagnusSkywatcher AdeptRimeshield Frost Giant
Naban, Dean of IterationNajeela, the Blade-Blossom

What was left after the final additions and cuts was a 750 card cube with 120 cards in each monocolor, 50 colorless cards, and 10 cards in each two-color combination. The cube actually didn’t need to be so large, as it is designed to be drafted with three players and a dungeon master, but the higher number of cards increases the variance, which I feel helps with replayability.

To play a proper campaign, divided the cards into 15 card “packs” and give each of your drafters 6 packs. As with two-headed giant sealed deck rules, they can build decks using any cards from one another’s packs to make sealed decks of at least 40 cards (You will want to keep around 50 of each basic land available for your cube to use). The Dungeon Master then pits against them in a game of archenemy (with or without the actual archenemy scheme cards) using Commander decks, Oathbreaker decks, or Hoard decks. Ideally, the Dungeon Master should scale the difficulty so that the first deck is easiest to overcome, with each subsequent deck being increasingly challenging. To emulate gaining experience and leveling up, give each player one additional “pack” after each encounter they can use to enhance their decks!

That concludes season 1 of Cube of Force. I hope you’ve enjoyed this series as much as I enjoyed writing it. Next time, we will start work on a different kind of cube. In the meantime, the final version of the DND cube can be found here. The entire article series from start to finish is as follows:

Paul, The Rocking Bard


#dungeonsanddragons #ttrpg Cube dnd mtg

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