The Great Designer Search 3

From MTG Wiki
Jump to: navigation, search
GDS3 logo.jpg

The Great Designer Search 3, or GDS3, is a Magic: The Gathering design contest by Wizards of the Coast to be held during the first quarter of 2018.[1] The goal of the contest is to find new talent for Magic design.

The Great Designer Search 3 is a sequel to The Great Designer Search, which was held in the fall of 2006 and The Great Designer Search 2 held during the fall of 2010.

Initial trials[edit | edit source]

On January 16, 2018 The Great Designer Search 3, like its former itenerations, started with the candidates answering ten questions in essay form, with a 350 word cap per question.[2] The application proces for these trails went through several technical issues, forcing Mark Rosewater to perform damage control via his social media.[3][4][5] About 7800 people expressed an interest in participating.[6]

First Trial[edit | edit source]

The first trial required participants to answer ten questions with 250-350 words each.[7] The questions were:

  • Introduce yourself and explain why you are a good fit for this internship.
  • An evergreen mechanic is a keyword mechanic that shows up in (almost) every set. If you had to make an existing keyword mechanic evergreen, which one would you choose and why?
  • If you had to remove evergreen status from a keyword mechanic that is currently evergreen, which one would you remove and why?
  • You're going to teach Magic to a stranger. What's your strategy to have the best possible outcome?
  • What is Magic's greatest strength and why?
  • What is Magic's greatest weakness and why?
  • What Magic mechanic most deserves a second chance (aka which had the worst first introduction compared to its potential)?
  • Of all the Magic expansions that you've played with, pick your favorite and then explain the biggest problem with it.
  • Of all the Magic expansions that you've played with, pick your least favorite and then explain the best part about it.
  • You have the ability to change any one thing about Magic. What do you change and why?

This trial was explicitly designed as a time-consuming task because it would eliminate the people that weren’t really invested; 3085 people submitted valid essays.[8][6]

Second Trial[edit | edit source]

The second trial was a 75-question multiple-choice trial that tested the participant's knowledge of various aspects of Magic design.[9][10] 3,085 people were invited to take the test, 3056 of them actually participated.

Three people got perfect scores. The cutoff ended up being 73 (of 75). 94 people advanced with a score of 73 or better.[8][6]

Third Trial[edit | edit source]

The third trial was a design test created by Erik Lauer where participants were asked to design 10 cards based on the following criteria:[11][12]

  1. All the cards had to be two-color and each of the ten two-color combinations needed to be represented.
  2. Each of the following five card types - creature, enchantment, instant, planeswalker and sorcery - needed to be represented twice, and never on the same color.
  3. Each rarity (common, uncommon, rare, and mythic rare) had to be represented on at least two cards.
  4. The cards were to be submitted in order of quality of design, from what the designer considered their best design (first) to their worst design (last).

Additionally, the following rules were establshed by Rosewater:

  • The designs were for an undefined Standard-legal set. The participant were told not to design for other formats (Commander, Conspiracy, Un-sets, etc.)
  • The participants were told not to make new named keyword/ability word mechanics (They could write things out as long as they didn’t name them). The only mechanics they could use were evergreen (flying, first strike, haste, etc.) or deciduous mechanics (hybrid, double-faced cards, split cards, etc.). They were not allowed to use old block keyword/ability word mechanics.
  • The cards were being graded in a vacuum meaning the designs didn’t have to have a relevance to one another.
  • They didn’t get any text to explain their designs. The cards had to speak for themselves.
  • They could add creative elements, and everything needed to be named and costed, but they weren’t going to be graded on their creative work or costing.

The Show[edit | edit source]

The Great Designer Search 3 "show" began on Friday, March 9. On it, Mark Rosewater introduced the eight finalists along with the judges (Mark Rosewater, Erik Lauer, Melissa DeTora, Eli Shiffrin and a number of rotating judges).[13]

Final candidates[edit | edit source]

The final candidates were Alex Werner, Ari Nieh, Chris Mooney, Jay Treat, Jeremy Geist, Linus Ulysses Hamilton, Ryan Siegel-Stechler and Scott Wilson.[14] Treat had also been a finalist in the second Great Designer Search.

Design Challenge #1[edit | edit source]

The first show also was planned to introduce the first design challenge. However, it was later decided to to this later. Now the challenge will be revealed at the same time as the results.[14]

Finals[edit | edit source]

The top three remaining finalists will be flown out to Wizards of the Coast for a final in-person challenge. The winner will be offered a position as a paid Magic design intern for six months.

External links[edit | edit source]

Finalist pages[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Wizards of the Coast. (December 4, 2017 .) “Great Designer Search 3”,, Wizards of the Coast.
  2. Mark Rosewater. (January 16, 2018.) “Great Designer Search 3 Trials Begin”,, Wizards of the Coast.
  3. Mark Rosewater. (December 17, 2017.) "I submitted my entry to GDS3 the very first day, but I see people talking about having to resubmit due to some technical issue?", Blogatog, Tumblr.
  4. Mark Rosewater. (January 17, 2017.) "I sent out my GDS3 application according to the terms and conditions, but I haven't gotten any sort of mail about it.", Blogatog, Tumblr.
  5. Mark Rosewater. (January 18, 2017.) "Missing an GDS3 Email?", Blogatog, Tumblr.
  6. a b c Mark Rosewater. (January 30, 2018.) "Few Comments on the GDS3 Multiple-Choice Test", Blogatog, Tumblr.
  7. Mark Rosewater. (February 5, 2018.) “Essay What You Will”,, Wizards of the Coast.
  8. a b Mark Rosewater. (January 29, 2018.) "Info on the GDS3 Multiple-Choice Test", Blogatog, Tumblr.
  9. Mark Rosewater. (February 12, 2018.) “Make a Choice, Part 1”,, Wizards of the Coast.
  10. Mark Rosewater. (February 19, 2018.) “Make a Choice, Part 2”,, Wizards of the Coast.
  11. Mark Rosewater. (February 06, 2018.) "The Great Designer Search 3 Trial 3 (The Design Test)", Blogatog, Tumblr.
  12. Mark Rosewater. (March 5, 2018.) “Reading the Designs”,, Wizards of the Coast.
  13. Mark Rosewater (February 9, 2018) "The Great Designer Search 3" Drive to Work
  14. a b Mark Rosewater. (March 9, 2018.) “The Great Designer Search 3 - Meet The Top 8”,, Wizards of the Coast.
Promotional Content