With the first iteration of Silumgar, my first point of reference was the Adult Green Dragon, much like I used the Adult Red Dragon as my starting point for Atarka. The main effect focus for this iteration of Silumgar was making his poisonous breath worked more as a constant aura than as an irregular-use breath weapon. The Dragons’ Virulence ability, was the core of this design, based on Silumgar’s ability to give enemy creatures -1/-1 for each attacking dragon. I gave the ability an area of affect to give it the feeling of a slowly approaching death-cloud.
I felt that to best represent the character, Silumgar needed high charisma (which will only get higher as he grows to an elder dragon), which allows high values on his Deception and Persuasion skills. Differing from the Adult Green Dragon, Silumgar’s flying speed is notably 20 feet slower, to invoke the feeling of him as a slowly-approaching source of slow death. Another thing you may note is that unlike an Adult Green Dragon, Silumgar is resistant, rather than immune to poison. This was something that I felt needed to be consistent across both of his forms, considering Sidisi’s plot to kill him with an extremely virulent poison of her own making.
As an elder dragon, Silumgar is less of a drifting death-cloud and more of a lethargic tyrant. To reflect this, his elder dragon form no longer has the Dragons’ Virulence ability (but retains the Fume legendary action as a little callback to it), so that he may be tended to by humanoid servants, without them dying by poison. In addition, elder dragon Silumgar has a lower flying speed and lowered dexterity to represent his slothfulness.
To represent the specific abilities on his card, I enhanced the poison damage of Silumgar’s appropriate melee attacks, to represent Deathtouch. The What’s Yours is Mine ability represents Silumgar’s power to take control of a creature or planeswalker when he enters the battlefield. It has a particularly slow recharge (while still plausible that it can be used multiple times per combat) to prevent it becoming too powerful; Silumgar essentially has a built-in Dominate Monster power with Recharge 6.
Compared to my statblock for Dragonlord Atarka, Silumgar is weaker with a lower challenge rating, which I felt was appropriate when comparing the cards of the two; Silumgar has a lower converted mana cost than Atarka, as well as lower strength and toughness, demonstrating that he is physically weaker than his G/R counterpart.
So, after this and the Ur-Dragon a couple of weeks prior, there’s been no shortage of dragons on this blog! I’m going to be away on a little holiday as this post goes up, but I do have a post coming up with some news when I get back, as well as a post for next week.