Essence is my idea for a new card type for Magic.Why do we need a new card type?
In Magic, Instants and Sorceries share a common pool of subtypes. These are also called spell types. So far, the only spell type in the game is Arcane. Spell types by definition only appear on instants and sorceries. To put these spell types on permanent types--land, creature, artifact, enchantment--we need a new card type the same way WotC created a new card type called Tribal
to put creature types onto non-creature cards. Ergo, I shall name this new card type Essence
.What is Essence?
Essence is a new card type very much like Tribal. What Tribal does for creature types, Essence will do for spell types. Hence, Essence type and spell type are synonymous. Essence can appear on permanent cards, before its main card type. That is, we can have an Essence Enchantment, Essence Land, Essence Artifact, and Essence Creature. Then, the essence type follows the card type after the long dash. For instance, any of the following may be seen on a card's type line:
Instant - ArcaneWhat else is it good for?
Sorcery - Arcane
Essence Land - Arcane
In addition to allowing spell types to appear on permanent cards, we can give Essence permanents special rules. These are some ideas:
A) From the concept of snow mana, we can have Essence permanents that produce mana infuse some essence of the same spell type into the mana. Such mana that is produced by Essence permanents can be used to pay for spells with the same spell type regardless of color requirements. For instance, suppose we are trying to play the Kamigawa spell Into the Fray
, which costs
to play. Suppose we also have an Essence Land like this:
Arcane SourceArcane Source
Essence Land - Arcane
: Add to your mana pool.
. This can be used as colorless mana for regular spells. Furthermore, this mana can be used to pay for colored mana required by Arcane spells. So this is what happens during a game:
- Tap Arcane Source to add mana.
- Use the mana to pay for the in Into the Fray's mana cost. Even though Into the Fray requires red mana, the mana that came from Arcane Source is essentially any color when paying for Arcane spells.
We could have an artifact that produces colored mana, and if the spell's subtype matches the artifact's essence type, then the mana is essentially any color. So the following diamond here alone will be enough to pay for Into the Fray:
Arcane DiamondWill there be other spell types besides Arcane?
Essence Artifact - Arcane
: Add to your mana pool.
Definitely, this was the main intent of allowing spell types to be found on permanents. Limiting Arcane to only instants and sorceries severely limited design space. By opening them up to permanents via Essence, we should see much more card interactions for spell types, as Tribal did for creature types.
Here are some ideas for new spell types:Psychic
One idea for a new set is to have those four new spell types plus Arcane
form an alliance of colors, similar to the tri-color shards of Alara. They may be arranged like so:
- Arcane - secret knowledge, library, tutor, arcane-cycling, divulge, rebel search, small Gifts Ungiven
: search 2, opponent chooses one, other goes grave
- Psychic - mental games, hand, taunt, madness, vandalism
- Entropy - "Entropy increases as matter and energy in the universe degrade to an ultimate state of inert uniformity", graveyard, <type> threshold?, trigger at upkeep if in grave, diffusion, displace
- Force - mass, acceleration, growing, momentum
- Fractal - pattern, repetition, uniformity, formula, consistency, sliver-like, scry, rippleWill there be new keywords for the new spell types?
Absolutely. I'm trying to come up with keyword actions similar to clash
is a keyword action similar to clash, except that we use cards in hand. Taunt goes hand in hand with Psi
501.TAUa To taunt, a player chooses a card from his or her hand and places it face down on the table. He or she is now a taunter and the card is a taunt card until the taunting contest ends.
501.TAUb "To taunt an opponent" means "Choose an opponent. You and that opponent each taunt."
501.TAUc After every taunter has chosen his or her taunt card, all taunt cards are revealed. Each taunter gets psi points equal to his or her taunt card's converted mana cost or total psi value, whichever is higher. If a taunter has no cards in hand to place face down, that taunter starts with 0 psi points. Then, starting with the active player, each player may discard a card from his or her hand and choose to increase any taunter's psi points, until no one discards any more cards. A card discarded this way adds points equal to its total psi value; if it has no psi value, it adds points equal to its converted mana cost but at least 1 point. A taunter wins if he or she has more psi points than every other taunter. After the winner is determined, all taunt cards are discarded [previously returned to their owners' hands], and the taunting contest ends.
502.PSIa Psi is a triggered ability that functions while the card is in a player's hand. Psi N means "When this card is discarded, you may have target player displace N cards."
503.PSIb Cards with Psi are also used in a taunting contest. See Taunt.
502.PSIc If a permanent has multiple instances of Psi, each triggers separately. For example, when a card with Psi 2 and Psi 3 is discarded, two triggered abilities are created. Also, this card would grant 5 total psi points during taunts.
Sorcery - Psychic
~ deals 3 damage to target player. Taunt that player. If you win, ~ deals 3 damage to each creature that player controls.
(formerly yank) is a new keyword action that instructs you to put cards from the top of your library to your graveyard. The spell or ability may have various effects based on the qualities of the cards revealed this way, such as card type, converted mana cost, colors, power and toughness, etc. Existing cards, like Millstone
, will be errataed to use displace.
501.DISa To "displace N cards" means to put the top N cards from the top of your library into your graveyard.
501.DISb If an effect tells you to put a displaced card to another zone besides the graveyard, that card goes from the library directly to the other zone. The card is still considered to have been displaced.
Entropy Land Play
Sorcery - Entropy
Displace 3 cards. Put any land cards displaced this way into play tapped.
is a keyword action that puts a permanent in play into its owner's hand. Existing cards that say to return a permanent to its owner's hand will be errataed to use withdraw.
501.WITa To withdraw a permanent, its controller moves the permanent to its owner's hand.
Withdraw target creature.
, permanents can grow
over time represented by accumulating counters.
502.GROa Grows is a static ability that functions while in play. "Grows up to N [counter type] counter(s)" means "At the beginning of your upkeep, if this permanent has less than N [counter type] counters on it, put a [counter type] counter on it."
502.GROb Grows without a number means "At the beginning of your upkeep, put a [counter type] counter on this permanent."
502.GROc If a permanent has multiple instances of grows, each triggers separately.
A permanent with "Grows up to N [counter type] counter(s)" can have more than N such counter(s) on it if they were put there via other methods, such as Timecrafting and Coretapper.
Force Bear (aka Grizzly Cub)
Essence Creature - Force Bear
Grows up to two +1/+1 counters.