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eshifen said: On the idea of a Dark Jace: cliches are great for recognizable top-down designs (like Evil Twin), but don't make for compelling stories. Particularly not one like the Evil Counterpart, which cheapens the characters involved by eschewing actual emotional/psychological characterization in favor of a gratuitous gimmick totally detached from actual human experience. (yeah, this is a pet peeve of mine)

A trope is a tool. It can be used well or used poorly. As a “Star Trek” fan, for instance, I enjoyed both “Mirror, Mirror” and the character of Lore. Both are the evil twin trope.

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amirashika said: Mark, I just listened to your "How to get a job in R&D" podcast. I just wanted to thank you for taking your time in doing these, I'm sure a lot of people will benefit from the advice you give : )

I’m glad you enjoyed it.

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sweetoothtkc said: Does Mons Johnson (of Goblin Raiders fame) do anything but play in the FFL? I see his name come up a lot in FFL related stuff but not much else

Mons is a playtester. That’s his primary responsibility.

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esrix said: I like Evil Twin. Please don't listen to the haters.

Evil Twin was one of the most popular cards in Innistrad.

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eshifen said: Your justification to keep the name New World Order (tradition > applicability) directly contradicts the justification given for replacing the name Elder Dragon Highlander (applicability > tradition)

No, it doesn’t. The first is an inward facing program used solely by R&D. The second is an outward facing program used by the public with a name that is misleading. It also uses someone else’s IP.

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asmileunderthestars said: Does the Future League and the Future Future League focus only on standard? Or do they also test Modern and Eternal formats as well?

It mostly just tests Standard.

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mylifeisafirehazard said: Did I hear correctly that efreets are in Jeskai? I love that creature type! :D

You did hear correctly.

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tperusic said: It was my wife's birthday yesterday. Could you tell her something cool about her favorite character, Avacyn? :)

The first Avacyn had an ability called “forbidden” that was killed before the mechanic got out of design.

Happy Birthday!

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sirblackaxe said: Could blue get first strike? Cunning tactics and outmaneuvering seems like a blue way to fight.

Blue should not have first strike.

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danoggin said: Have we seen the last of Fblthp?

I hope not.

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captainjackharness said: Are there still folks inhouse that think that the Great Creature Update was a bad move? Why might that be? It seems like all upside, especially to tribes that don't have a ton of newer members.

Having the cards do things that are not represented in text on the card is not ideal.

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ricardolongo said: Please don't do an evil twin for Jace. Or for any character, for that matter. That's a pretty tired and silly trope in my opinion, one that usually destroys my ability to take a story seriously. Personal opinion, of course. :)

You write off a lot of different IP’s if you eliminate all the ones that have used the evil twin trope,

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aazadan said: We know that you have to be really good at Magic to be on a development team, but how good do you have to be to be on a design team?

Less good.

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professorwhat said: So...was Vronos one of your favorite Planeswalkers?

Yeah, he’s awesome. Wait, did something happen to him?

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about9spiders said: I didn't actually understand the Garruk tales from the pit. How exactly is it pronounced? I've always said Guh-rook, not pronounced gah-rook. Everyone else says ga-rick and it bothers me.

It is pronounced GAIR (rhymes with hair”) - ruck (rhymes with “truck”). The emphasis is on the first accent.