New players are experiencing a phenomenon for the first time in the planes of Magic. What is this amazing tech? Fetching for lands! Cards like Evolving Wilds
, Terramorphic Expanse
(both that search for basic lands only), and a complete cycle of “fetch lands” that allow you to grab one of two land types and put it into play. In Modern and Eternal formats, exploiting fetch lands to find “dual lands” (e.g., Tundra
) or “shock lands” (e.g., Sacred Foundry
) is incredibly useful for getting the color of mana you need.
For example, Windswepth Heath will be able to grab you any card with the subtype Forest OR Plains. This means you have up to twenty-two cards to choose from (assuming they are in your library) and put into play.
Tundra, Bayou, Savannah, Plateau, Scrubland, Taiga, Tropical Island, Godless Shrine, Stomping Grounds, Sacred Foundry, Hallowed Fountain, Temple Garden, Breeding Pool, Overgrown Tomb, Sapseed Forest, Murmuring Bosk, Dryad Arbor, Mistveil Plains, Snow-Covered Forest, Snow-Covered Plains, Forest and Plains.
Twenty-two choices with just one fetch land. As long as the card has the land type that the fetch land says, it is a legal object for the ability to put into play. The ability is not ‘playing’ the second land, but putting it directly onto the battlefield. This does trigger landfall or any other abilities that trigger when a land enters the battlefield (Courser of Kruphix
will gain you a life for the fetch land entering the battlefield and for the land it puts on to the battlefield). The land that you grab still follows its rules text.
- Here are some helpful hints:
- Shock lands still give you the option to put them out untapped by paying 2 life after being fetched
- In response to Blood Moon being cast, you can crack a fetch and go get the basic you need before the Blood Moon resolves (you won’t be able to search once the Blood Moon resolves as your fetch land is now a Mountain – though it can tap for R)
- You can tap a fetch land for B if there is a Urborg, Tomb of Yagmoth on the field
- Grabbing an Arbor Dryad will get you a land that taps for G but it will have summoning sickness
- Crucible of Worlds and any fetch land = a lot of value
- You can crack a fetch on your turn or your opponent’s turn
- The land you fetch for does not count as your land for the turn
- Cracking a fetch land is not a mana ability so don’t try to crack it mid-casting a spell. Technically its Out-of-Order Sequencing or a shortcut but best be on the safe side and get the land you need first
- Sacrificing the fetch land is part of the cost of the ability so any attempt to destroy the fetch land before you can put the ability on the stack will be a wasted effort
- With control of Ob Nixilis, The Fallen, playing and cracking a fetch gains you six +1/+1 counters and your opponent losing 6 life
Unfortunately, in the current Standard format, you will only be able to search for basic lands, and only one of the types mentioned specifically on the land you sacrificed. For example, if I were to activate Bloodstained Mire‘s ability, I would only be able to search my library for a Mountain or Swamp card. Not a Forest, a Plains, or an Island.
- They’re called “Shock lands” because the card Shock deals 2 damage much like the lands do in order to put them in play untapped.
- “Fetch” because they fetch you the land you want.
Hope you learned something new today! Gotta fetch em’ all!
Today’s Rules Tip written by Daniel Clarke