Vikings: Loki

While walking to work today, I had an idea. I’m not sure I’ll use this, but still.

Loki was Odin’s adopted son. He was actually a giant, not a god. So, maybe I’ll just use the ambiguity. Our Loki character might be a planeswalker, who just found a way to infiltrate this family of gods. Also, I’ll use the same idea I wrote about when I was still doing Exiled. I’ll let our Loki character only have abilities which will eat its loyalty. (Actually, WotC did this once with Sarkhan the Mad, I just didn’t remember at the time.)

That actually sounds about right. Loki is a fickle creature, who follows his urges without any long term planning. I’m not going to give it any abilities to protect itself. Actually, quite the opposite. Nor am I going to give it any abilities to raise its loyalty. What I am going to give it are abilities, which fit with his personality. This means he should be red. Maybe red-black, but I think I’d rather go with just red.

We have four red planeswalkers (well, actually three monored, nine with red in their casting cost, but I chose these four as they are a good basis for making mine feel different): Chandra, Koth, Tibalt, and Sarkhan. Chandra is the pyromancer character, who just burns things with certain amount of sarcasm. Koth likes his mountains. I guess he’s supposed to be some sort of geomancer. Tibalt is actually so close to Loki in feel, that I’m considering just bringing him back, but with very different set of abilities. Sarkhan works with dragons.

Based on this, lets give Loki the working title of Tibalt, Adopted by Gods. A bit clunky, but works for now. Although Tibalt seems to be much crueler than the early versions of Loki, maybe Tibalt has been living as Loki for a long time and has been more and more tempted by the possibilites available to him.

Since we want him to stick around we’ll give him a zero costing ability. However, going with the trickster ethos, this is something that will actually risk Tibalt himself. So, an ability, which risks Tibalt, but can be useful, but is still small enough to warrant the zero cost.

How about forcing attacks? This is mostly in blue, but often enough in red to warrant using it here, as it clearly represents Tibalt doing something to piss another creature off. Sounds like a great first ability to me. Actually, just word it in such a way that the creature must actually attack Tibalt. This would lead to situations, where you can sacrifice Tibalt in name of keeping yourself alive, which isn’t actually that flavorful, but a good possibility.

What else does Loki like to do? How about sticking his nose where its not supposed be and just gleefully doing what he feels like. This is a bit harder. I want a more random feel and I want payback for Tibalt. Sarkhan the Mad has the following ability:

0: Reveal the top card of your library and put it into your hand. Sarkhan the Mad deals damage to himself equal to that card’s converted mana cost.

How about doing this with your opponents library? Obviously Tibalt can’t let you draw cards from your opponents library, but it can let you cast them. This feels pretty blue to me, again, but I’m just going to stretch the color pie. Randomness is a red thing and therefore this is a good starting point. So, I’d say Tibalt can exile the top card of an opponents library and cast it with his loyalty counters, or maybe just cast it for free, if able, and lose those loyalty counters. That way, you might get a huge benefit, but Tibalt will probably get rid of himself in the process.

Lastly, a variation on the original Tibalt’s second ability, which dealt damage to target player equal to the number of cards in that players hand. Well, working with Loki is always a gambit, so we’ll make that not targeted, but each player instead. Perhaps, as we want Tibalt to work against itself, this must be redirected to planeswalkers if possible.

So, what about casting cost and starting loyalty? I’ll go with original Tibalt’s casting cost of RR and I’ll give him a pretty low loyalty to start with, so you can’t cause mayhem for an extended period of time. Maybe 3?

So, our planeswalker would now look like this:

Tibalt, Adopted by Gods RR
Planeswalker – Tibalt
0: Target creature attacks Tibalt, Adopted by Gods during its controller next turn if able.
0: Reveal the top card of target opponents library. You may cast that spell without paying its mana cost. Tibalt, Adopted by Gods loses loyalty counters equal to the spell’s converted mana cost.
0: Tibalt, Adopted by Gods deals damage to each player equal to the number of cards in that players hand. This damage must be redirected to a planeswalker if able.

I’m pretty happy with that. He want win games on his own like some planeswalkers, but if played correctly (which might require some skill and much luck), he’ll be effective and fun. There would be a huge backlash if this was actually printed, but I’d blame it all on Tibalt himself causing the chaos. Also, people’s expectations of planeswalkers are skewed by cards such as Jace, the Mind Sculptor and Elspeth, Sun’s Champion when you can get a huge advantage with different kinds of cards, like our Tibalt here.

I do hate how small the text became on MSE… Maybe I should change the middle ability just for that reason.

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