Mana Rocks?

  • #1
    So, I was messing around with some designs for a little thing I'm doing, and I wanted to add some mana rocks. Anyway, I decided a vertical cycle going Manalith - ??? - Gilded Lotus would be a kind of cool idea, with obviously the ??? being an uncommon mana rock that added two mana of any one color and costing 4.

    This lead me to search the Gatherer, thinking yeah, there's probably a printed version of this card, but I found only Khalni Gem. Now, don't get me wrong, Khalni Gem is a fine and dandy card and all, but it has obvious Zendikar-centric design with the bouncing two lands to your hand "draw back", but thinking about it, would a "strictly better" Khanli Gem be broken? I don't really think so, but we'll let y'all decide.

    Prismatic Battery - 4
    Artifact (U)
    T: Add two mana of any one color to your mana pool.
    This doesn't seem broken to me in the least, it seems right on par with today's power level to me, but tell me what you think.

    Anyway, since I'm on the Mana Rock subject, here's a quick cycle I did, but I'm unsure about the power level of these, so tell me what you think:

    Pearl of Thune - 2/W
    Artifact (U?)
    T: Add W to your mana pool.
    :sym2w:, T, Sacrifice ~: You gain 3 life.
    Sapphire of Evos Isle - 2/U
    Artifact (U?)
    T: Add U to your mana pool.
    :sym2u:, T, Sacrifice ~: Look at the top three cards of your library, then put them back in any order. Draw a card.
    Jet of Xathrid - 2/B
    Artifact (U?)
    T: Add B to your mana pool.
    :sym2b:, T, Sacrifice ~: Target player loses 3 life.
    Ruby of Valkas - 2/R
    Artifact (U?)
    T: Add R to your mana pool.
    :sym2r:, T, Sacrifice ~: ~ deals 3 damage to target creature.
    Emerald of Kalonia - 2/G
    Artifact (U?)
    T: Add G to your mana pool.
    :sym2g:, T, Sacrifice ~: Target creature gets +3/+3 until end of turn.
    I haven't changed by signature since Mirrodin Besieged spoilers started!
  • #2
    The cycle is too powerful. They produce the same mana that they cost if you paid colored, they ramp you, and can be used to fix mana. Cheap mana ramping nowadays starts at 2 (or has a condition, in the case of Mox Opal). At 2 you start getting things like Signets, Diamonds/Coldsteel Heart, Talismans, and Everflowing Chalice/Mindstone. Notice that if they produce colored mana, it comes with drawback. Diamonds come into play tapped, signets require a mana input, Talismans ping you for colored.
  • #3
    I agree, way too strong. I think 3/U (or whatever color) would be a much more appropriate cost.
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  • #4
    Hybrid/twobrid mana doesn't seem appropriate here. This would probably be good enough template:

    Pearl of Thune 2
    Artifact (U)
    CARDNAME enters the field tapped.
    T: Add W to your mana pool.
    W, T, Sacrifice CARDNAME: You gain 3 life.

    3 life might not be good enough, but 3 damage with the red one might be a little too good. You should feel free to break the pattern of threes that you have going.
    Last edited by silvercut: 9/8/2012 5:53:15 PM
  • #5
    Okay guys, thanks for the input on the cycle, I'll likely change the mana costs to 2, W, and so on, and add an ETB tapped clause. I agree about breaking the 3 pattern, but I was really trying to make the cycle be a shout-out to the boon cycle from back in the day, obviously making adjustments because Recall is nuts and Dark Rit isn't exactly part of black's pie these days, nor would it exactly be "fair" to have black ramp even more mana then the other colors (granted with the new Liliana, Nirkana Revenant and cards along those lines popping up lately, I could see Rituals being a thing in black again).

    As for adjusting the "secondary abilities", would the white one making 1/1 Soldiers or something be more appropriate? And personally, I think if the red one is adjusted to cost 2 and enters tapped that 3 damage isn't too much of a stretch (essentially speaking you're sacrificing a mana source and paying 2R for 3 damage, compared to Searing Spear and Seal of Fire, it's somewhat poor as far as burn is concerned).

    Also, no one's commented on the "better" Khalni Gem, does that seem solid to everyone?
    I haven't changed by signature since Mirrodin Besieged spoilers started!
  • #6
    Quote from Messor
    As for adjusting the "secondary abilities", would the white one making 1/1 Soldiers or something be more appropriate? And personally, I think if the red one is adjusted to cost 2 and enters tapped that 3 damage isn't too much of a stretch (essentially speaking you're sacrificing a mana source and paying 2R for 3 damage, compared to Searing Spear and Seal of Fire, it's somewhat poor as far as burn is concerned).


    Yeah, it's poor in mana-efficiency but it's versatile. If there's no problem, you ramp. If you need to kill something, you kill something. 2R for 3 damage when it can double as a mana source (or just be split up between two turns) isn't bad at all. I would still prefer it at 2 damage (although at that point I might let it hit players too)
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  • #7
    Whenever you put "You gain 3 life." and "Target player loses 3 life." in the same cycle, you are leaving the zone of balanced cards. Orzhov Guildmage seems like an insightful design to me. EDIT: Also refer to Obelisk of Alara for an interesting comparison of cheap color abilities.

    "Draw a card" alone can "out-equal" "Gain 3 life", so why do you insist going so far with the ability? You hit your "three"-theme already with the reordering. Abilities don't need to cantrip.
    Planar Chaos was not a mistake neither was it random. You might want to look at it again.

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  • #8
    I don't deny the fact that the white one is terribly weak in the cycle, hence the reason I proposed it making tokens instead.

    Here's an adjusted version of the cycle, still trying to keep the theme of 3's in there:

    Pearl of Thune - 2
    Artifact
    ~ enters the battlefield tapped.
    T: Add W to your mana pool.
    W, T, Sacrifice ~: Put a 2/1 white Knight creature token with first strike onto the battlefield.

    ^This one somewhat breaks the theme, originally thinking of making three 1/1's but that would make this one much stronger than the rest, I was even considering a 3/3 Golem before settling on this, but it fits from the perspective of 2+1=3.

    Sapphire of Evos Isle - 2
    Artifact
    ~ enters the battlefield tapped.
    T: Add U to your mana pool.
    U, T, Sacrifice ~: Look at the top three cards of your library, then put them back in any order. Draw a card. Activate this ability only as a sorcery.

    ^Let's be honest here, Ponder -shuffling for 2U and sacrifice a mana source isn't exactly good, probably better than the rest of the cycle in the end just due to the nature of the ability, but it still isn't great. Added the sorcery clause to try and tone down the "advantage" it has on the others.

    Jet of Xathrid - 2
    Artifact
    ~ enters the battlefield tapped.
    T: Add B to your mana pool.
    B, T, Sacrifice ~: Target player loses 3 life.

    ^Bump in the Night on this one was to differentiate it from the red one.

    Ruby of Valkas - 2
    Artifact
    ~ enters the battlefield tapped.
    T: Add R to your mana pool.
    R, T, Sacrifice ~: ~ deals 3 damage to target creature.

    ^I personally like where this one is at, again trying to keep the the 3 theme and differentiating it from the black one (obviously with it only hitting creatures), but I think if I were to nerf this one, I'd probably add an "activate only as a sorcery" clause.

    Emerald of Kalonia - 2
    Artifact
    ~ enters the battlefield tapped.
    T: Add G to your mana pool.
    G, T, Sacrifice ~: Target creature gets +3/+3 until end of turn.

    ^Giant Growth? Rawr?
    Last edited by Messor: 9/9/2012 3:09:15 AM
    I haven't changed by signature since Mirrodin Besieged spoilers started!
  • #9
    Quote from Messor
    Also, no one's commented on the "better" Khalni Gem, does that seem solid to everyone?

    Manalith was already weaker than several existing cards when it was printed. But Ur-Golem's Eye is not bad enough for a card that much better than it. Maybe if your Prismatic Battery entered tapped? Also, because of the White Mana Battery cycle and the fact that this does not need to be charged up to use it, I would change the name.

    Quote from Messor
    I don't deny the fact that the white one is terribly weak in the cycle, hence the reason I proposed it making tokens instead.

    Here's an adjusted version of the cycle, still trying to keep the theme of 3's in there:

    now white does something radically different from the rest and blue is super-wordy compared to the rest.
  • #10
    If Wizards wanted a "tap for 2 of any colour" artifact for 4 mana they would have already printed it.

    If you want to obsolete Sisay's Ring, maybe have it provide 1 of any colour and :1mana:.

    And yeah, a battery is something that builds up charge counters IMO. Another name perhaps.

    B/G mana B/G mana R/G mana B/G mana B/G mana B/G mana R/G mana B/G mana B/G mana B/G mana W/G mana B/G mana B/G mana B/G mana R/G mana B/G mana B/G mana B/G mana R/G mana B/G mana B/G mana
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  • #11
    You know, I've kind of always wanted to see something with "Add one mana of any color or 2 mana to your mana pool." Maybe your Battery is the place for that.
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  • #12
    Quote from void_nothing
    You know, I've kind of always wanted to see something with "Add one mana of any color or 2 mana to your mana pool." Maybe your Battery is the place for that.

    Yeah, nice compromise. Solid uncommon, would see play in casual decks across multiple formats, and potential for constructed use also.

    B/G mana B/G mana R/G mana B/G mana B/G mana B/G mana R/G mana B/G mana B/G mana B/G mana W/G mana B/G mana B/G mana B/G mana R/G mana B/G mana B/G mana B/G mana R/G mana B/G mana B/G mana
    If this post is in a "running tally" thread, I'm referring to the price of the item on my website. If it's in Card Creation, I design for Portal 4, a hypothetical set legal in Legacy constructed only. Smile
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