The Doctor Who Universes Beyond crossover, releasing this October, features four Commander decks detailing different parts of the Sci-Fi IP’s massive legacy. Blast from the Past features characters from Doctor Who’s History, while Timey-Wimey hones in on the time spent with the ninth, tenth and eleventh Doctors. Paradox Power looks into the more recent twelfth and thirteenth Doctors, and Masters of Evil cares about Villains from the entirety of the Doctor Who franchise. The ladder of these decks introduces the new mechanic labeled Villainous Choice.
Since an entire Commander deck is being dedicated solely to the villainy of Doctor Who, it makes sense to come up with a new mechanic that’s just as evil as the characters it helps represent.
MTG Villainous Choice
Villainous Choice is an MTG mechanic that forces an opponent to decide between, generally, two choices that are negatively benefit them. This can be two direct downsides to the player who needs to make the Villainous Choice, or can be a benefit to you, which also negatively impacts them in the way that it’s benefitting you.
Take the above card, for example. Davros, Dalek Creator forces a rather simple Choice on all of your opponents who lost 3 or more life on your turn. They must either discard a card, or you draw a card.
The only other current example of a Villainous Choice we currently have is Missy. Missy forces both opponents to face a Villainous Choice on your end step, either taking damage equal to the number of Artifacts you control, or allowing you to draw a card and having Chaos Ensue.
At this point, all of the examples of Villainous Choice we have access to affect multiple opponents at once. That said, a lot of the content for the Doctor Who crossover has not been revealed as of the writing of this article.
A New, Explosive, Example
Villainous Choice effects can get quite ridiculous, scaling from a simple card advantage decision to something that could end the game outright. Genesis of the Daleks showcases a much harder Villainous Choice to make – whether all your Daleks convert their power into damage or if all other creatures die. Regardless of what they choose, considering that six Daleks, or 18 power worth, are being created by this spell alone, either decision is catastrophic.
The constant behind Villainous Choice, however, remains the same. Opponents must choose which outcome they want to suffer.
While we do not currently have too many examples for how Villainous Choice is applied, we do have an example of Villainous Choice support. The Valeyard forces opponents to face Villainous Choices twice instead of once, effectively doubling the value of those triggers. You also get to vote an additional time, which could make this an interesting political Commander.
Other New Doctor Who Mechanics
That’s about all we know regarding Villainous Choice for the time-being. This isn’t the only new mechanic that Doctor Who will be bringing to the stage. The new Timey-Wimey Commander deck interacts with time via the new Time Travel mechanic. If you like casting cards from outside your hand, the new Paradox mechanic from Paradox Power may be your cup of tea.