Friday, October 6, 2017
MTGinktober freewheels into Day 6, "Sword," starring mythic common, Topan Freeblade, dressed to kill with nothing less than her very own Sword of Light and Shadow and Sword of Fire and Ice!
I didn't enjoy Magic Origins too much because people jammed it way too often just to open ~10,000 yen Jaces (I opened two, and lost both to the group's stupid raredraft policy), and I even got the mondo combo with Willbreaker for a mind control at will (broken). But mostly, Origins always felt like I did the right thing, drafted the archetypes correctly, but the opponent would always just come away with a win out of nowhere or things just wouldn't break my way. This isn't to make excuses, I'm just telling you it was frustrating because it felt like I didn't get rewarded for doing what the designers wanted me to do. Also, bad memories of the playgroup I had to deal with at the time.
However mixed my feelings on Origins Draft, boy did I love smashing face with Topan Freeblade. I might have had three in one deck as my record. If you land her turn two, man, you feel unbeatable. I'd almost always play black-white, so she'd often have some killspells to get her through at any point in the game, and she just takes over once she gets renowned. So great. I knew I wanted to have her be our star for "Sword."
Fun Facts: My favorite color is black, so I was thrilled to have opened a Sword of Light and Shadow back in the Darksteel days, but I referenced the sadly more pleasant-looking Modern Masters versions of the swords here. I say sadly because the originals were done by Mark Zug, ordinarily one of the unbeatable Magic artists. The rather exhausted ox in the field is none other than the one and only Pillarfield Ox. He's kind of a running joke, but I have fond memories of him in M14, which as I recall was the suuuuuuper slow format, where it just came down to who got their flyers online and/or through more frequently. You could bank on this big booty blocker to all but assure you were locking down the ground.
Easter Eggs: I hid "tired" in the grass because man, oh man, was I wiped out while drawing this. Since Topan Freeblade's original artist is the legendary Johannes Voss, I hid the little German B (ß) things as her armor designs.
This is a rare peek at thumbnails. My original idea was her just gunning for at the camera with her swords, tri-sworded like Zolo from One Piece, and she'd also have Sword of Kaldra. AND she'd be fighting (indicated by the shadow on the gound) a nezumi with a Manriki-Gusari. I realized I was both drained and tight on time, so I knew I couldn't draw this and make deadline, or even just a sort of basement shot of her and her collection of famous Magic swords, so I went for less on background and more on wistful mood.
The story I came up with here is that she's bored being away from battle, and is thinking fondly but melancholicly of her weaker battlepals who fell for not being as martially gifted as her. She just wants to get back off the farm and onto the battlefield. She's seen a lot and they say time off in the plains is what she needs, but...that can't be right.