All right, we’re finally getting to the new mechanics of the set!
Let’s dive right in, shall we? Journey into Nyx has only two new mechanics (common for a small third set, since it’s also got returning mechanics from the two prior sets). Those mechanics are Constellation and Strive.
Constellation ties in with the enchantment theme of the set, and the plane; like Heroic, it is an ability word, used simply to group similar abilities together. The common thread tying all Constellation abilities together is that they trigger when that enchantment or any other enchantment enters the battlefield under your control. And that’s ANY kind of enchantment- global, normal enchantments like the Dictate cycle? Those trigger your Constellations. Normal Auras like the Ordeal cycle? Those trigger your Constellations. Bestow creatures? Yep- when they come down as an Aura OR as an Enchantment Creature, they’ll trigger your Constellations. Note that a Bestowed Aura becoming a creature does not count as “entering the battlefield”, since it was already on the field- you won’t double up on your Constellation triggers with Bestow. And all those Enchantment Creature tokens? Those trigger Constellation too!
The other new mechanic, representing the Mortal side of the conflict with the Gods, is Strive. The spells with Strive are interesting- they can target any number of creatures inherently, but cost more for every new target. This is different from Multikicker and other additional costs, because if they were additional costs you’d be announcing your intent to pay the additional cost before actually picking your targets, which is odd and clunky for a whole entire mechanic, rather than outlying cards. So, Strive just makes it a cost increase, which applies after you pick your targets. The main points with Strive are that you can’t target the same creature more than once with a Strive spell, and if you’re casting a Strive spell “without paying its mana cost” (such as with Oracle of Bones) you CAN still aim it at as many targets as you want, but each additional target will require an actual, real payment. And yes, Strive will trigger Heroic on all the Heroes you aim it at! Strive is also just one spell, even if you have 100 targets- all it takes is one counterspell to shut it down. However, if one or more of your spell’s targets become illegal before it begins to resolve, don’t worry- so long as even one target remains legal, the spell will still resolve and do all that it can to the legal targets. It won’t “Fizzle” (be countered by the rules of the game) unless it has ZERO legal targets as it tries to resolve.
Well, that just about wraps up the Mechanics Week- but wait! We still have one more day until the prerelease, right? Tune in tomorrow for a special post about Prerelease Tips- useful advice to get the most fun out of your prerelease weekend!
Today’s Rules Tip written by Trevor Nunez