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How should a new card be made?

Most of the new cards that have been released in the last year or two, have been entirely new cards with innovative mechanics (Goblin Cage, Fisherman, Elixir Golem, Battle Healer, Electro Giant). Such cards are very difficult to think of. If you think of a weird mechanic, you have to consider how a card with that mechanic will affect the game, and will it be good for the game overall.

Instead, why not use all the existing mechanics that have been proven to work in the game, and are good for the meta? This way, it isn't very difficult to come up with a card idea, and the card is still new and fun.

The basic stats like HP, hit speed, damage etc can be varied, and then if we want, add a few existing mechanics to the mix, like knockback, or a dash attack, etc.
For example, take archers. Decrease their hit speed to that of a mortar, buff their damage to that of a musketeer, buff their health to bomber. There you go, a rough outline for a very new card. All that has to be done is polish the idea a little, fine-tune the stats to make it more balanced, maybe add a charge attack mechanic, etc.

In fact, some of the very recent cards are just like this. Skeleton Dragons and Electro Spirit don't introduce any new mechanic. Electro Spirit is just a spirit with chain lightning. Skeleton Dragons don't have ANY new mechanic and the card is still new and fun.

Why is this better?

Let us take an existing card a, and a new card b made using the process explained above. Card a is usually used in deck A.

  1. Even if two cards are only slightly different, they take up completely different spaces in the meta. Card b probably won't be useful in deck A, but might become useful in some deck B. For example, Skeleton Dragons are essentially half a Baby Dragon each. But you can't use Skeleton Dragons everywhere you use a Baby Dragon and vice versa. Therefore two very similar cards will actually be very different in game.
  2. This will add a lot of variety in decks. Any given deck will have a variety of cards available for the same role. Since there were no cards like card a being used in deck B, you now have a very new card being used in deck B. Again taking the Baby Dragon-Skeleton Dragons as an example, Baby D is used in Graveyard decks, but Skeleton Dragons aren't. Instead, Skeleton Dragons work well in fireball-bait decks and now you have a flying splash unit in such decks.
  3. Let's say the new card that is similar to an existing card also works in the same type of decks and is played the same way too. Then the first 2 points are negated. But now this new card can act as a replacement for the existing card in all the decks it is a part of and ultimately switches up decks and the meta.

In any case, the new card b will be a NEW card. It will either change how deck A is played, or how deck B is played.

tl;dr New cards need not have new mechanics to be new enough. Changing up existing cards is enough.

submitted by /u/Wohii
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