Ravnica: City of Guilds
|Ravnica: City of Guilds|
|Mark Rosewater (lead),|
|Brian Schneider (lead),|
|October 7, 2005|
Themes and mechanics
Keywords and/or ability words
(20 basic lands, 110 commons, 88 uncommons, 88 rares)
Development code name
|Ravnica block sets|
|Ravnica: City of Guilds||Guildpact||Dissension|
|Magic: The Gathering chronology|
|9th Edition||Ravnica: City of Guilds||Guildpact|
Ravnica: City of Guilds, shortened as Ravnica (pronounced /RAV-ni-kah/, /rav-NEETS-uh/, or /RAV-nih-kuh/) , is the first set in the Ravnica block. It is the 36th Magic: The Gathering expansion and was released on October 7, 2005.   
Ravnica: City of Guilds contained 306 black-bordered cards (88 rare, 88 uncommon, 110 common, and 20 basic lands). "Ravnica" is a multicolor oriented set. The design is based around four two-color pairs, including cards in which those pairs of colors work in concert. All the multicolor cards in the set Ravnica block are associated with one of the four guilds. The appearance of a guild symbol in the background of a card's text box identifies that card's guild affiliation. The guild symbols have no effect on game play. Ravnica: City of Guilds also introduced the hybrid mana system used throughout the Ravnica block. The expansion symbol of the set is a tower, which stands for the overdeveloped cityscape of the plane of Ravnica. 
"Ravnica" (ravnìca; равнѝца) is a Serbo-Croatian word for "plain". The influence of Eastern Europe is not only reflected in this etymology of the expansion name but throughout the flavor of the set.
The expansion set was well-received, particularly because of its innovative "guild model", and won the 2005 Origin Awards for Best Collectible Card Game or Expansion.
Ravnica: City of Guilds was sold in 75-card tournament decks, 15-card boosters, four preconstructed theme decks and a fat pack. All products except the boosters contained a random Pro Tour Players Card. The booster packs featured artwork from Savra, Queen of the Golgari, Moroii, Loxodon Hierarch, Helldozer and Circu, Dimir Lobotomist The prerelease was held on September 24–25, 2005; the prerelease card was a foil alternate art Gleancrawler. The release card a Dimir Guildmage. The set was accompanied by the novel of the same name by Cory J. Herndon.
Flavor and storyline
Following in the tradition of recent previous Magic blocks, Ravnica takes place in a plane of the multiverse that was previously unexplored in the game's backstory. The world of Ravnica is an ecumenopolis, a vast city that covers the entire surface of its planet, and is home to a diverse assortment of sentient races. For ten thousand years, there has been a power struggle between the ten Guilds of Ravnica, political factions that each represent a combination of two of Magic's five colors. Ten millennia ago, the Guildpact was signed by the paruns, ending active warfare between them and ushering in an era of peace. But now, on the eve of the celebrations of the accord's ten thousandth anniversary, a sinister force threatens the survival of that peace.
Themes and mechanics
Ravnica introduced hybrid cards with entirely new mana symbols ("Guild mana"). Each symbol is a circle halved diagonally, in which the top left half is one color and the bottom right half another. A smaller version of the color's icon (sun for white, skull for black, etc.) appears in the corresponding half. These mana symbols mean that mana of either color may be used to pay it. The cards with these mana symbols have a colored border that fades from left to right, out of one color and into the other.
Ravnica also introduced a heavy "auras matter" theme, being the second block (after Urza's Saga) to place any sort of mechanical focus on the enchantment subtype. Although there are no mechanics directly related to auras, cards like Gatherer of Graces, Bramble Elemental, and the Magemark cycle definitely encouraged the use of the local enchantments.
|Boros Legion||Razia, Boros Archangel
Agrus Kos, Wojek Veteran
|Radiance||Radiance is an ability word that appears on spells and abilities that affect every creature that shares a color with the target creature. When played on multicolored cards, the effect spreads to all that card's colors.|
|House Dimir||Szadek, Lord of Secrets
Circu, Dimir Lobotomist
|Transmute||A player may pay a certain amount of mana and discard a card with Transmute from his or her hand. Doing this allows the player to find a card with the same converted mana cost from that player's library and put it into his or her hand.|
|Golgari Swarm||Sisters of Stone Death
Savra, Queen of the Golgari
|Dredge||Cards with dredge may be returned from the graveyard to their owner's hand, provided that player opts to skip drawing a card and instead puts a number of cards from the top of his or her library into the graveyard.|
|Selesnya Conclave||Chorus of the Conclave
|Convoke||A player playing a spell with Convoke may tap some of his or her creatures to pay part or all of the mana cost. Each creature tapped reduces the cost by one mana of that creature's color, or by one colorless mana.|
The following creature types that are not new to Magic are used in this expansion:
- Boar (retroactively)
- Camel (retroactively)
- Human (retroactively)
- Hydra (retroactively)
- Minion (retroactively)
Ravnica has two cycles:
- Come into play Auras: Each of these Enchant Creature - Auras do something when they enter the battlefield (e.g. when Strands of Undeath is resolved, target player discards two cards) — Faith's Fetters, Fists of Ironwood, Flight of Fancy, Galvanic Arc and Strands of Undeath.
- Hunted creatures: Each of these rare creatures' casting costs included two mana of the appropriate color. Each had greater-than-average power, toughness, and abilities for its cost, but caused one or more token creatures to enter the battlefield under an opponent's control to balance the cost — Hunted Lammasu, Hunted Phantasm, Hunted Horror, Hunted Dragon, and Hunted Troll.
- Birds of Paradise, first printed in Alpha, last seen in 8th Edition
- Dark Heart of the Wood, first printed in The Dark
- Elves of Deep Shadow, first printed in The Dark
- Goblin Spelunkers, first printed in Urza's Saga, last seen in 7th Edition
- Smash, first printed in Apocalypse
- Snapping Drake, first printed in Portal, last seen in Starter 1999
- Benevolent Ancestor, functional reprint of Alabaster Wall (Mercadian Masques) save for creature type
- Char, red colorshifted version of Psionic Blast (Alpha)
- Rain of Embers, red colorshifted version of Dry Spell (Homelands)
- Clinging Darkness, upgrade from Torment (Stronghold) and Twisted Experiment (Urza's Destiny)
- Convolute, upgrade from Flaccify (Unhinged)
- Courier Hawk, upgrade from Armored Pegasus (Portal)
- Elvish Skysweeper, upgrade from Willow Elf (Starter 1999)
- Frenzied Goblin and War-Torch Goblin, upgrades from Dwarven Trader (Homelands) and Mons's Goblin Raiders (Alpha)
- Grayscaled Gharial, upgrade from Fugitive Wizard (Legions), Merfolk of the Pearl Trident (Alpha), and Wondering Ones (Champions of Kamigawa)
- Roofstalker Wight, upgrade from Dakmor Scorpion (Portal Second Age), Krovikan Scoundrel (Coldsnap), Skeletal Snake (Portal), and Wei Infantry (Portal Three Kingdoms)
- Shred Memory, upgrade from Decompose (Odyssey)
- Surge of Zeal, conditional upgrade from Unnatural Speed (Champions of Kamigawa)
- Thoughtpicker Witch, upgrade from Muck Rats (Portal)
- Transluminant, upgrade from Balduvian Bears (Ice Age), Barbary Apes (Legends), Bear Cub (Portal Second Age), Forest Bear (Portal Three Kingdoms), and Grizzly Bears (Alpha)
- Veteran Armorer, upgrade from Fresh Volunteers (Mercadian Masques), Glory Seeker (Onslaught), and Knight Errant (Portal)
- Votary of the Conclave, upgrade from Eager Cadet (Starter 1999)
- Ravnica Dual lands which would be the beginning of the Ravnica dual lands mega cycle: Overgrown Tomb, Sacred Foundry, Temple Garden and Watery Grave.
- Blazing Archon - A target for Reanimator decks.
- Dark Confidant - Draw engine in Extended, Modern, Legacy, and Vintage, as well as an aggressive creature. Bob Mahlers's invitational card.
- Flame-Kin Zealot, Golgari Grave-Troll, Stinkweed Imp, Golgari Thug - The core of Dredge-based decks, including Legacy and Vintage Ichorid.
- Life from the Loam - A very powerful card drawing engine, particularly in combination with Fetchlands and Cycling lands.
- Lightning Helix - A very powerful removal spell, making it hard for aggressive decks to race.
- Flame Fusillade - Interaction with Time Vault was abused in Vintage.
- Loxodon Hierarch - An aggro-control staple providing a large creature for a decent price, offsetting lifeloss from aggressive decks and with a good, though seldom used, ability.
- Watchwolf - once common in Zoo decks of many formats, now somewhat obsoleted by more efficent cards like Wild Nacatl and Tarmogoyf
The preconstructed theme decks are:
|Theme deck name|
|Charge of the Boros||□||■|
- ↑ Brady Dommermuth. (September 15, 2005.) "Ask Wizards", Daily MTG, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- ↑ Wizards of the Coast. (December 16, 2004.) "Ravnica Revealed", Daily MTG, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- ↑ Mark Rosewater. (August 12, 2002.) "Codename of the Game", Daily MTG, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- ↑ Erik Lauer. (September 10, 2012.) "Developing the Return", Daily MTG, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- ↑ Brady Dommermuth. (October 31, 2006.) "Ask Wizards", Daily MTG, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- ↑ "ravnica" — Wiktionary
- ↑ "ravnica" — EUdict
- ↑ John Dale Beety. (August 8, 2012.) "Return to Ravnica (for Those Who've Nver Been)", StarCityGames.com.
- ↑ Allan Sugarbaker. (July 1, 2006.) "2005 Origins Award winners announced", OgreCave.com.
- Ravnica: City of Guilds product information page — Wizards of the Coast
- Ravnica Orb of Insight — Wizards of the Coast
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