Tuesday, July 15, 2008

MTG 101: Parts of a Magic Card

I know a lot of people are still not familiar or doesn't know how to play Magic: The Gathering trading card game so I've decided to show to you step by step or rather post by post on how to play Magic: The Gathering. My first post for this segment would be a discussion on the parts of a Magic card. Just like any other card game, you might be wondering what are those symbols, images and text are for. Here are the explanation, as based on the official Magic: The Gathering Basic Rulebook:


Card Name - as the name implies, it shows the name of the card. In our example above, the card's name is Sengir Vampire.

Mana Cost - Mana is the main resource of Magic and it is produced by lands. You tap your lands to produce Mana and spend it to play spells. The symbols in the upper-right corner of the card tell you the cost to play that spell. For our card Sengir Vampire to be played, the mana cost is read as 3BB (B means black mana and is symbolized by the black skull) which means you pay 3 mana of any kind or what we call as generic plus 2 black mana (from a Swamp) to play it.

Type Line - This tells you the card’s card type: artifact, creature, enchantment,instant, land, or sorcery. If the card has a subtype or supertype, that’s also listed here. For our card example, Sengir Vampire is a creature and its subtype is the creature type Vampire.

Expansion Symbol - This symbol tells you which Magic set the card is from. For example, the Tenth Edition expansion symbol as you see in the card is the big letter X. The color of the symbol tells you the card’s rarity: black for common cards, silver for uncommons, and gold for rares.

Text Box - This is where a card’s abilities appear. You may also find flavor text printed in italics (like this) that tells you something about the Magic world. Flavor text has no effect on game play. Some abilities have italic reminder text, like the text after the word "Flying" on the above card, to help explain what they do.

Power and Toughness - As you can see on the lower right of the card, each creature card has a special box with its power and toughness. A creature’s power (the first number) is how much damage it deals in combat. Its toughness (the second number) is how much damage must be dealt to it in a single turn to destroy it. In our example card, the Sengir Vampire's power is 4 and its tougness is also 4.

Collector Number - The collector number makes it easier for you to organize your cards. For the example, “176/383” means that the card is the 176th of 383 cards in the Tenth Edition set. You can also see beside that number is the name of the artist of the card.

So there you have it. I hope that helps clearing your mind of the questions on the parts of a Magic card. As for our next lesson err topic on Mtg 101, I'll discuss to you the Magic: The Gathering card types so stay tuned and don't forget those assignments. (I feel like a professor. Lol...) Till next time peeps.

1 comment:

Second Life Update said...

I used to play Magic for years. I just wish I had kept some of my old cars as they were worth a lot of money. I still play sometimes today but with a newer deck.