Magic: The Gathering Wiki
Magic: The Gathering Wiki

Land is a card type.


Lands are the base for magic, because they are used to produce the magic energy of mana at no cost other than tapping. Land is primarily used (by tapping) for Mana, but often lands have other abilities. It would seem that the rulebook does not determine whether one may play land for an opponent for abilities like landwalk. Lands do not go on the 'stack' and do not have a Mana Cost as they are what provide mana. Lands can be thought of as currency, except that you get all your currency back to spend again (during the untap phase of your turn, in which all of your tapped cards are untapped).

Mana Burn

Before 2010, there was a rule stating that every time mana dissipates from your mana pool at the end of a step or phase, you lose one life per mana that dissipated. This has, however, been changed with an update to the rules by Wizards of the Coast and no longer applies.

Symbolism of Lands

The symbolism of lands, according to the Learn to Play Magic video series, is that "planeswalkers form a bond with the lands that they visit", and to cast spells, you have to "draw from that bond". The idea behind this is that every type of land has a specific kind of mana, and as such forming a bond with that land will yield that specific type of mana when you tap into it (hence the term tapping a land). In the game, each type of mana is symbolized by its own color and symbol. See Basic Lands below for the specific colors.

Nonbasic Lands

Nonbasic lands are all the lands that aren't Basic Lands. Nonbasic Lands can have any and all abilities, although all modern lands produce Mana (there are a few earlier lands that do not produce Mana but Wizards of the Coast sees this as a mistake). Some lands have Activated Abilities, like Terramorphic Expanse and Simic Growth Chamber. Some nonbasic lands come in play tapped and some require you to return a land to your hand (Ex. Izzet Boilerworks). Some lands like Seat of the Synod are Artifact Lands. and with the ability to use these nonbasic lands your deck will become much stronger and thus you will have more chance of winning some controversy is the add on mana to your mana pool which means your draw fro your library not tapping the card

Comprehensive Rules

305. Lands

  • 305.1. A player who has priority may play a land card from his or her hand during a main phase of his or her turn when the stack is empty. Playing a land is a special action; it doesn’t use the stack (see rule 115). Rather, the player simply puts the land onto the battlefield. Since the land doesn’t go on the stack, it is never a spell, and players can’t respond to it with instants or activated abilities.
  • 305.2. A player can normally play one land during his or her turn; however, continuous effects may increase this number.
  • 305.2a To determine whether a player can play a land, compare the number of lands the player can play this turn with the number of lands he or she has already played this turn (including lands played as special actions and lands played during the resolution of spells and abilities). If the number of lands the player can play is greater, the play is legal.
  • 305.2b A player can’t play a land, for any reason, if the number of lands the player can play this turn is equal to or less than the number of lands he or she has already played this turn. Ignore any part of an effect that instructs a player to do so.
  • 305.3. A player can’t play a land, for any reason, if it isn’t his or her turn. Ignore any part of an effect that instructs a player to do so.
  • 305.4. Effects may also allow players to “put” lands onto the battlefield. This isn’t the same as “playing a land” and doesn’t count as a land played during the current turn.
  • 305.5. Land subtypes are always a single word and are listed after a long dash. Land subtypes are also called land types. Lands may have multiple subtypes. See rule 205.3i for the complete list of land types.
    • Example: “Basic Land — Mountain” means the card is a land with the subtype Mountain.
  • 305.6. The basic land types are Plains, Island, Swamp, Mountain, and Forest. If an object uses the words “basic land type,” it’s referring to one of these subtypes. A land with a basic land type has the intrinsic ability “Mana: Add [mana symbol] to your mana pool,” even if the text box doesn’t actually contain that text or the object has no text box. For Plains, [mana symbol] is 1 White Mana; for Islands, 1 Blue Mana; for Swamps, 1 Black Mana; for Mountains, 1 Red Mana; and for Forests, 1 Green Mana. See rule 107.4a. See also rule 605, “Mana Abilities.”
  • 305.7. If an effect sets a land’s subtype to one or more of the basic land types, the land no longer has its old land type. It loses all abilities generated from its rules text, its old land types, and any copy effects affecting that land, and it gains the appropriate mana ability for each new basic land type. Note that this doesn’t remove any abilities that were granted to the land by other effects. Setting a land’s subtype doesn’t add or remove any card types (such as creature) or supertypes (such as basic, legendary, and snow) the land may have. If a land gains one or more land types in addition to its own, it keeps its land types and rules text, and it gains the new land types and mana abilities.
  • 305.8. Any land with the supertype “basic” is a basic land. Any land that doesn’t have this supertype is a nonbasic land, even if it has a basic land type.
  • 305.9. If an object is both a land and another card type, it can be played only as a land. It can’t be cast as a spell.
Card Types
Supertypes BasicLegendarySnowWorld
Artifact ClueContraptionEquipmentFortification
Creature Creature Types
Enchantment AuraCurseShrine
Land PlainsIslandSwampMountainForestDesert
Planeswalker (subtypes)
Instant / Sorcery ArcaneTrap
Other Card Types
Multiple Types Artifact LandArtifact CreatureEnchantment Artifact
Enchantment CreatureLand Creature
Other ConspiracyPhenomenonPlane
Scheme (Ongoing) • TribalVanguard
Obsolete ContinuousEliteHeroInterrupt
Mana SourceMonoPolySummon