Camellia, the Seedmiser
9, Jul, 24

Bloomburrow Debut Reveals Five Brand-New MTG Mechanics!

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Bloomburrow is finally here at long last! Well, its spoiler season has started at least. Starting things off with a bang, as usual, Wizards’ Debut Livestream for the set has unveiled a bevy of new cards. With cracked soon-to-be staples and typal delights aplenty, there’s definitely a lot to love about Bloomburrow.

On top of the decidedly new all-animal aesthetic, Bloomburrow also features a fair few new mechanics. Largely themed around animals and the set’s cutesy aesthetic, the new Bloomburrow mechanics are each exciting and versatile. As always, as fun as they are, these new mechanics in Bloomburrow can take a little bit of getting used to.

Thankfully, to mitigate any potential confusion, we’ve got the lowdown on everything there is to know about each of the new mechanics in Bloomburrow!

Gift

Parting Gust

Initially revealed thanks to a leak back in June, we’ve now had our first official look at the new Gift mechanic. As the name somewhat suggests, this mechanic allows you to Gift an opponent an advantage while casting a spell. Should the optional Gift be promised upon casting, your spell can be upgraded or completely reinvented.

First things first, the exact wording of Gift is a little strange, as you have to “promise an opponent a gift.” This wording might seem unusual, however, it’s important the Gift is decided first to establish the spell’s ability. In the case of Parting Gust, for example, this spell can have two completely different effects, depending on whether the Gift was promised.

Without promising a Gift, Parting Gust is a rather potent flicker effect. While it might not be the cheapest version of this effect, the added +1/+1 counter is incredibly useful. In aggressive decks that want a little bit of extra protection, Parting Gust should work wonders.

Should you promise a Gift to an opponent, Parting Gust simply becomes a removal spell. While this spell can’t hit tokens and replaces whatever gets removed, this is nonetheless a complete transformation. Essentially, the Gift mechanic allows Parting Gift to be two spells in one. Notably, if you choose to promise a Gift and your opponent counters the spell, no Gifts will be given.

Currently, we’ve only seen one card with the Gift mechanic, but there’s a huge amount of potential with this mechanic. Not only can Gift upgrade effects, rather than reinventing them, but the Gift itself isn’t constant. While Parting Gust gifts a Fish, there’s nothing stopping other cards from Gifting other tokens, or even effects like card draw.

Offspring

Bloomburrow Debut Spoilers Warren Warleader

Offspring is a fairly simple kicker-esque extra cost mechanic that can be paid when casting a spell. Should you pay the Offspring cost, you’ll get an extra 1/1 copy of the cast creature when it enters.

Unlike mechanics like Squad, the Offspring cost can only be paid once. This prevents it from being too efficient of a mana sink, however, it nonetheless provides additional options. Whether you’ve got mana to burn or want the additional value, Offspring is always a viable option.

Currently, we’ve only seen an Offspring cost of 2. It has been confirmed that there will be other Offspring costs in the set. So long as said creatures have powerful abilities, doubling up on these for minimal extra cost will be incredibly powerful.

As evidence of that power, Warren Warleader’s Offspring makes the card twice as strong. While you don’t get another 4/4 body to crash in with, the token-creating or buffing abilities are nonetheless versatile.

Notably, the tokens that the Offspring mechanic creates all have mana values. This will protect some Offspring from removal spells and board wipes such as Pest Control

Valiant

Seedglaive Mentor

If you remember Heroic from Theros, Valiant is going to feel very familiar. Similarly Heroic, Valiant is a triggered ability that activates when a creature is the target of a spell. Unlike Heroic, however, the Valiant ability only activates the first time a creature is targeted each turn. Valiant is also triggered by targeted abilities that you control, making it much easier to trigger.

To put it lightly, this is a pretty major downgrade compared to Heroic. While the option to trigger Valiant with abilities is useful, the ability only triggering once per turn is nonetheless a major restriction. That being said, this restriction is probably a good thing, all things considered.

Since Valiant can only trigger once per turn, Wizards can be more experimental and daring with the buffs it provides. Admittedly, we haven’t seen this so far on Flowerfoot Swordmaster or Seedglaive Mentor, but the potential is nonetheless there. Much like Heroic, Valiant could easily provide card draw, directed damage, or board-wide buffs. 

At the end of the day, Valiant feels like a fixed version of Heroic. While Heroic might not be high on the Storm Scale, sitting at a 5 currently, Valiant is nonetheless more versatile. As a result, it seems pretty likely that we’re going to see more of this mechanic in the future.

Forage

Camellia, the Seedmiser

Out of all the new mechanics from Bloomburrow, Forage is absolutely the most flavorful. Aptly making sure of food, or otherwise wasted resources, Forage is a wonderful bit of extra Bloomburrow flare. The mechanic itself is also thoroughly intriguing, with plenty of gameplay potential.

To Forage, you need to either exile three cards from your graveyard or sacrifice a Food token. As seen on Camellia, the Seedmiser, you sometimes need to pay an additional cost in order to Forage. While Camellia requires a cost of 2, it’s unclear if this is a fixed cost across all cards with the Forage ability.

Since Forage is essentially just an extra cost that can be paid, the sky is the limit for what this ability can do. While it’ll likely be associated with Bloomburrow’s Squirrel Typal archetype, there are nonetheless boundless possibilities. Between buffs, card draw, or even removal, Forage can theoretically do it all. We’ll just have to wait and see what actually gets printed.

Expend

Muerra, Trash Tactician

Last, but by no means least, Expend is a unique new mechanic that cares about how much mana you’ve spent during a turn to cast spells. When you reach the Expend cost, such as Expend 4 on Muerra, Trash Tactician, you get a triggered ability. As Muerra shows, a single card can have multiple Expend abilities.

As an important note, Expend only tracks the amount of mana you spend on casting spells during a turn. This means any mana spent on abilities won’t count toward Expend, which is probably a good thing. Without this stipulation, tracking the mana spent could quickly get very confusing, so it’s better to play it safe.

While we’ve only seen one card with Expend so far, the effects it provides are already rather versatile. Offering life gain and Impulse draw, it seems Expend has a lot of variety and possibilities that should keep things interesting. Ultimately, we’re just going to have to wait to see what Expend cards get printed to see what it can do.

Read More: Bloomburrow Debut Spoilers Feature Incredibly Pushed Typal Support Cards!

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