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"The Ten Commandments of Cardmaking" (カードづくりのじっかい Kādo-zukuri no Jikkai) is a set of ethical codes put upon any card makers. Applies to any card game in existence.

The Commandments

  1. A player holds an obligation to a single match. A Cardmaker holds an obligation to the entire game. Always respect the balance of the game. Cards that don't respect the balance will lead to the destruction of the game itself.
  2. A Cardmaker must never cardmake cards with the sole purpose of using the cards himself, only if he agrees for others to use them as well.
  3. Always respect the Official Game Grammar (OGG). If the OGG is not followed, the card texts will mislead their effects.
  4. In creation of new card types, they must be verified in why and how they are different from the already existing card types.
  5. Be wise in naming your cards, and make sure that they do not carry the name of an unrelated archetype in their own name.
  6. Do not contribute to an already existing archetype of cards with your own cards without understanding the theme and the playstyle of the archetype itself first.
  7. The Main trait to a card's ability is the Effect. The 3 Minor traits are Condition, Cost and Aftermath. Reconsider effects in a creative sense, but remember to always counterbalance effects that are too powerful with the Minor traits.
  8. Respect the limits cards can acheive. Nothing can go above the maximum threshold without negative side-effects. Also regard the nature and importance of the game itself when limiting the powers.
  9. A valid way to verify a card's fair playability is to look for a way to defeat the card AFTER it's played, WHILE it's on the field and WHILE its effect is active, and only defeating that card, NOT the player that uses it. If no way to do so exists, the card's playability is unfair.
  10. Any card created without intention of playability must be marked as such.

Interpretations

The First Commandment

A player holds an obligation to a single match. A Cardmaker holds an obligation to the entire game. Always respect the balance of the game. Cards that don't respect the balance will lead to the destruction of the game itself.

—The First Commandment

The first commandment mentions the importance of creating balanced cards that can be incorporated into the actual game itself.

The term "balance of the game" has not been entirely deciphered, but it does appear to be a vital component in creating cards. A card that is balanced must, in short, show fair playability and have its restrictions.

This is the most imperative rule and, as mentioned in this commandment itself, leads to chaos within and ultimately the destruction of the game itself, if disobeyed. An example of such a scenario is explained in the AV Model (Absolute Victory Model).

The AV Model explains a hypothetical scenario that occurs when a card that does not obey the commandments is published in the real-life game. In the model, that card would become wanted by players due to its overwhelming power, far superior to other cards of similar use conditions, and the demand for the card's usage soon leads to the dissertation of most of the remaining cards, archetypes and strategies, simply because winning with that new AV card is much easier.

Because all the pro-players always win when they use the AV card, its usage in order to keep up with them becomes a new standard, and eventually the game dismisses all the remaining strategies and playstyles, and instead of a real game, everyone starts playing a game where the winner is the one that plays his AV card first. That way, no further distribution of cards is needed, and the progress of the game halts indefinitely.

Likewise, players that cannot afford the AV card simply refuse to play because that would mean that they lose by default. That way, in the AV Model, the game gets destroyed because of a single card. Therefore, the second commandment is set to prevent such a scenario from occuring.

Another important mention of this commandment brings up the issue of meta deck creation upon the making of cards. This means that, while a card may have been created to fit into a certain scenario its maker has envisioned, once it becomes a part of the game, players may use it in various other ways, which, if not thought up properly, leads to devastating combos and OTK moves that eventually ruins the game's balance, and leads to a problem related to the AV Model.

On an unspoken note, it also expresses every cardmaker's obligation to act and pretend as if the cards he/she makes can become a part of the real-life game, as opposed to the common excuse "these cards are not real".

The Second Commandment

A Cardmaker must never cardmake cards with the sole purpose of using the cards himself, only if he agrees for others to use them as well.

—The Second Commandment

The second commandment mentions a basic code of manners, and its meaning regards common charity of fanmade cards, that they are not created simply because a cardmaker wants to keep them to himself, but instead meant to enrich the game and can be used by other people participating in it. This principle regards a simple fact that a person with a one of a kind card that he/she created himself only did so for the sole desire to be superior to everyone else, which is in fact considered an act of pride and overconfidence, but is also cowardice and selfishness. For example, creating an all-powerful, all-immune card or archetype just for the sake of using it to dominate the game is not considered to be beneficial for the game's community, especially if they reflect personal grudges and weaknesses that cannot be compensated otherwise.

For this reason, the creator of a card is advised to consider all of his cards as playable units that various other players can use to their advantage, in various ways, which may differ from the card's initial design.

The Third Commandment

Always respect the Official Game Grammar (OGG). If the OGG is not followed, the card texts will mislead their effects.

—The Third Commandment

The third commandment briefly mentions the importance of usage of OGG (Official Card Grammar), which is the correct and accurate set of guidelines and terms used in card texts.

The Official Game Grammar is an important factor in cardmaking, and its accurate usage affects the major applications of effects, as well as their rulings in specific situations, and the understanding of the OGG is a vital asset in cardmaking and creating effects.

A simplified rule states that, while a player can interpret and explain the effects in any way he pleases. However the card text itself must be strict and objective, using terms that are valid in either player's point of view and can be interpreted in any situation. That means the card text must mention plenty of detailed materials for the effect, most notably when it can be used, "from where" & "where to" are cards moved, and how they act while they're on the field, but also shorten the texts by disregarding default situations.

The importance of the third commandment is as great as the usage of actual grammar in real life, and misuse of it may lead to situations where people will have no idea how the card works precisely. Because of this, the correct knowledge of the OGG terminology and its correct usage is imperative. This, however, often leads to major criticism among cardmakers, who dislike to be corrected and regard any such corrections to be an impolite expression.

The Fourth Commandment

In creation of new card types, they must be verified in why and how they are different from the already existing card types.

—The Fourth Commandment

The fourth commandment interprets the addition of newly invented card types and categorizations through the verification process. Other than effects, which may vary in execution and administration and are as such greatly converted by cardmakers, the addition of a new card type would affect the basing ruling of the game, and must be taken under precise reconsideration.

A common mislead some cardmakers do is to confuse "type" with the "archetype", and so mention many different phrases into the type section that cannot be classified as new types due to overlaps in the features or lack thereof. Because a new Type would lead to a new set of type-based support cards, as opposed to archetype-based ones, new types must be verified in order to be fully incorporated into the game.

In doing so, more than one member of that type must be presented to explain the different traits of the new Type. In addition, the new type must be present and known by the same name under the specified traits in more than 2 unrelated archetypes. This instantly sets a difference between a type, which explains the basic model of the card's categoriation, and archetype, which specifies cards into nameable groups.

In addition, types' name may not use nominals or unknown entities. The former because types are to be recognible through different archetypes, and the latter to keep it within the game's attention. Cards without recongible type have no meaning in the game, for they cannot be classified and verified for any supports.

For all these reasons, before a type can be invented, it must be verified in a way that is can afterwards be applied to more than one archetype and posses support cards for it.

The Fifth Commandment

Be wise in naming your cards, and make sure that they do not carry the name of an unrelated archetype in their own name.

—The Fifth Commandment

The fifth commandment concerns cardmaking from the archetype's perspective, and appoints the importance of the names of cards themselves. As card name is an important factor in distinguishing archetypes, a name that mentions the same words as another archetype may lead to a false assumption within the game that other archetype's support cards may support this new card as well.

This commandment also calls to make sure cards are not named in a way that their own support cards would affect cards that are unrelated to their archetype, and that support cards of other unrelated archetypes would not affect those cards.

On an unwritten note, this law also mentions the importance of the choice of words. Words that the official tends to avoid, should be avoided and replaced accordingly.

The Sixth Commandment

Do not contribute to an already existing archetype of cards with your own cards without understanding the theme and the playstyle of the archetype itself first.

—The Sixth Commandment

The sixth commandment describes the importance of knowledge of archetypes for cardmakers that wish to complete an official archetype with their own fanmade cards. This is not to be made without consideration, as completing an archetype not only concerns its style of play, but also the idea, theme and etymology of the archetype's background. One must know all the specifications of the archetype and fully understand its meaning and background in order to actually complete it.

In order to complete the archetype, it is not only advised to make the newly made cards compatible to it in effect, but also in name and theme, and must follow the mentioned standards.


The Seventh Commandment

The Main trait to a card's ability is the Effect. The 3 Minor traits are Condition, Cost and Aftermath. Reconsider effects in a creative sense, but remember to always counterbalance effects that are too powerful with the Minor traits.

—The Seventh Commandment

The seventh commandment puts the terms Major Trait and Minor Trait to use, and specifically designates the balance of a single card in its individual perspective. These terms divide a card's text in 2 categories: three Minor Traits (Condition, Cost and Aftermath) and one Major Trait (the Effect itself). Effect is mentioned as a Major Trait because in the card's actual performance, it's the effect of a card that ultimately matters, whereas all the other traits are planned on a side-note.

A general rule states that the stronger the card is, the more demanding must the Conditions be, the greater must the Cost be, and the graver must the Aftermath to the Effect be.

  • Condition is a Minor trait that describes the requirements that have to be fulfilled before the actual play of a card itself.
  • Cost is a Minor trait defined as a requirement that must be brought in order to use the card, generally not beneficial to the player using it by taking away resources. Also, these paid costs will not be returned even should the Effect does not properly take any action.
  • Effect is the Major Trait of all cards, and explains the card's essential function. Effects don't necessarily have to always be beneficial.
  • Aftermath is a Minor Trait that describes events and additional costs that are generally not beneficial to the player, that occur after the effect itself has triggered. Examples include skipping of the turn's phases, additional costs during the End Phase, or inability to perform actions.

This commandment mentions the imperative mention of the Minor Traits as a counterbalance to the Major Trait, if it appears to be too strong for the game's current balance. Some effects in the game use Minor Traits, or even the Major Trait itself, as counterbalances because the effects themselves appear to be unfair without proper conditions, but the purpose of its existence will inherently be defeated as a whole if the Major Trait is to not exist at all in the first place.

The Eighth Commandment

Respect the limits cards can acheive. Nothing can go above the maximum threshold without negative side-effects. Also regard the nature and importance of the game itself when limiting the powers.

—The Eighth Commandment

The eighth commandment states that any card's Major Trait and/or stat (raw power) is in a direct correlation to the minor traits. If a card reaches its limit for its respective power level, it must stop gaining positive effects and counterbalance these with negative effects and/or Minor Traits.

Exclusively for numeral value, there is absolutely no excuse for any card to posses infinite as any value, regardless of any Minor traits. This rule is strictly put for technical and ethical reasons. For technical reason, infinity as a number does not posses a finite value, and it crashes the game's entire calculation system when applied: Regardlessly of any kind of damage reduction effects or defenses, damage to either player will always be infinite. This leads to instant win and lose situations, or absolutely no conclusions whatsoever. So using infinity as any value would instantly dismiss the card as a mock-up creation. For ethical reasons, infinity is instantly dismissed as a value, since claiming that there is a monster with that much absolute power easily proclaims the cardmaker as unfair and self-centered.


The Ninth Commandment

A valid way to verify a card's fair playability is to look for a way to defeat the card AFTER it's played, WHILE it's on the field and WHILE its effect is active, and only defeating that card, NOT the player that uses it. If no way to do so exists, the card's playability is unfair.

—The Ninth Commandment

The ninth commandment explains the valid playability of cards. As many cardmakers tend to create cards that are immensely strong, they are often asked for ways how it can be defeated. A common excuse is the usage of effect negating and summon negating effects in order to prevent the monster from being used. However, this commandment denies this as a valid excuse.

  • If a card's only weakness is to get rid of it before it can do anything, it would not display its fair playability because the card was never actually used to be tested properly.
  • If nullifying the effect itself is mentioned as the only countermeasure, it would mean that the only way the card would display a weakness is if it doesn't have an effect in the first place.
  • If manuvering around the card to victory against the players themselves is selected to deal with the card, it does not clarify the fairness of the card itself because the victory did not affect the tested card.

In order to fully experience a card's fair playability, it must be "testplayed". The phrase "testplayed" does not mean the same thing for players as it does for cardmakers: Players testplay their deck in order to achieve victory and verify the balance of cards in his single deck. But cardmakers must judge their card's fair playability and both players reactions to its usage. In order to acheive this, if the cardmakers testplays the card themselves, he must put it into the opponent's deck instead of his own, and then see if it was interesting, fun or challenging to play the game with that card in play.

The Tenth Commandment

Any card created without intention of playability must be marked as such.

—The Tenth Commandment

The tenth and final commandment is a simple solution to all the cards that were never meant to be playable and clearly disobey any of the other laws on purpose, but with no means of disrespect. It remains as a fact that people fancy creating nonsensical cards that adore their idols or simply joke around just for fun, but as it cannot be assumed whether or not cards created in this way were meant to be playable or were just made as a parody, a lot of these cards fall under heavy criticism and are quickly proclaimed to be mocking the game. In order to avoid this when it's not necessary, this commandment obliges a mark of unplayability to be set somewhere on the card itself.

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