|Bill Rose (lead),|
Mike Elliott[note 1]
|Henry Stern (lead),|
Brian Schneider[note 2]
|February 8, 2002|
Themes and mechanics
Keywords and/or ability words
(55 commons, 44 uncommons, 44 rares)
Development code name
|Odyssey block sets|
|Magic: The Gathering chronology|
Torment was notable for its shift from the conventional distribution, an equal focus, on all the five colors of Magic to a particular thematic and mechanical emphasis on black. Consequently, from the set's development, it was, and is, referred to as the "black set". To account for the over-representation of black, the total number of green and white cards was accordingly reduced; the following expansion, Judgment, would later correct the inequality of black, green, and white cards. In addition to there being more black cards, the general level of power of black cards was comparably more powerful than those of other-colored cards.
In addition to a higher-than-usual number of black cards, there are numerous cards in other colors that specifically refer to black or Swamps (e.g., Major Teroh, Stern Judge, Cephalid Snitch, Barbarian Outcast, Enslaved Dwarf, Krosan Constrictor, Nantuko Blightcutter, Cabal Coffers), are thematically related to black (e.g., Possessed Nomad, Possessed Aven, Possessed Barbarian, Possessed Centaur), or use black mana (e.g., Balshan Collaborator, Pardic Collaborator).
Torment was noted for featuring a four-card cycle of "Tainted" lands, which could add black mana or mana of another color if their controllers controlled a Swamp and were the only lands in the expansion.
Flavor and storyline
- All non-premium English-language white cards in Torment have a reduced image resolution, making them look grainy and pixilated.
Themes and mechanics
Non-keyworded themes and mechanics included Nightmare Horrors (or, simply, Nightmares), each of which had a comes-into-play and leaves-play ability. These creatures could exiling a permanent of a specific type from play until they left play. The abilities of most of these Nightmares (exceptions being Soul Scourge and Laquatus's Champion) could manipulated such that the exiling of permanents was essentially until the end of the game, by triggering the leaves-play ability as the Nightmare enters play and manipulating the order of abilities on the stack.
No novel creature types were introduced in this expansion.
The following creature types that are not new to Magic are used in this expansion:
- Archer (retroactively)
- Elemental (retroactively)
- Frog (retroactively)
- Human (retroactively)
- Monk (retroactively)
- Ox (retroactively)
- Rogue (retroactively)
- Scout (retroactively)
The creature type Guardian was used in this expansion at the time of printing but was later changed to Elemental.
Torment features eight five- or four-card cycles and three vertical cycles.
- Creatures with threshold-active CIP abilities: five uncommon creatures with comes-into-play abilities if and when their controllers have threshold — Teroh's Vanguard, Cephalid Sage, Gloomdrifter, Pardic Arsonist, and Centaur Chieftain.
- "Disorder" enchantments: five uncommon enchantments with activated abilities requiring either the discard of a card or the sacrifice of the enchantment for an effect. Each "disorder" enchantment is named after a mental disorder or condition — Hypochondria, Compulsion, Mortiphobia, Pyromania and Narcissism.
- The red "disorder" enchantment, Pyromania, involves random discard.
- "Flashback — 1C, Pay 3 life" cards: five common instant or sorcery spells with "Flashback — C, Pay 3 life" — Spirit Flare, Deep Analysis, Crippling Fatigue, Flash of Defiance, and Acorn Harvest.
- Common Madness cards: five common cards with Madness — Frantic Purification, Obsessive Search, Psychotic Haze, Fiery Temper, and Basking Rootwalla.
- Uncommon Madness cards: five uncommon cards with Madness — Strength of Isolation, Circular Logic, Strength of Lunacy, Violent Eruption, and Arrogant Wurm.
- Dreams: four rare instant or sorcery cards, each costing two mana of their respective color and requiring the discard of any number of cards for a scalable effect — Vengeful Dreams, Turbulent Dreams, Nostalgic Dreams, and Devastating Dreams.
- The red Dream, Devastating Dreams, involves random discard.
- "Possessed" creatures: four creatures, each costing C, an in-color ability, and threshold. When their controllers have threshold, the creatures become black, get +1/+1, and gain the ability to destroy creatures of their former color — Possessed Nomad, Possessed Aven, Possessed Barbarian, Possessed Centaur.
- These cards are tenuously linked with, or similar to, Odyssey's Repentant Vampire, which, when its controller has threshold, becomes white and destroy creatures of its former color, black.
- "Tainted" lands: four uncommon nonbasic lands that may tap for or, if their controllers controls a Swamp, for or one mana of another color — Tainted Field, Tainted Isle, Tainted Peak, and Tainted Wood.
- Black Dreams: while white, blue, red, and green each received one (rare) Dreams spell, black received three, one per rarity (to date). Each black Dreams spell has a different cost from other black Dreams and non-black Dreams spells; but, common to Dreams spells, they require the discard of any number of cards for a scalable effect — Restless Dreams, Sickening Dreams, and Insidious Dreams.
- Punisher spells: each of these red spell provide the targeted opponent with a choice of two unfavorable effects, one of which is direct damage — Longhorn Firebeast, Flaming Gambit, and Skullscorch.
Torment has one mirrored pair.
- Strength of Isolation (white) and Strength of Lunacy (black) are both auras that confer a strength/toughness boon (respectively, +1/+2 and +2/+1) and protection from the opposite color. In addition to this, both of these auras have a Madness cost of C.
|Card||Introduced in||Featured in||Notes|
|Sengir Vampire||Limited Edition||Unlimited, Revised Edition, 4th Edition|
|Odyssey block preconstructed theme decks|
|Odyssey theme decks: Liftoff () | Pressure Cooker () | One-Two Punch () | Trounce-O-Matic ()|
|Torment theme decks: Sacrilege () | Grave Danger () | Insanity () | Waking Nightmares ()|
|Judgment theme decks: Air Razers () | Inundation () | Painflow () | Spectral Slam ()|
|Related pages: Odyssey block/Preconstructed theme decks • Odyssey block theme decks|
Torment has four bicolored theme decks. As the set is a black-heavy, fittingly, one of the colors of each of the four theme decks is black. Furthermore, it is noteworthy that two copies of each of the "tainted lands" cycle is included in each of the theme decks.
|Theme deck name|
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 Wizards of the Coast. (June 11, 2003.) "Eighth Edition Rollout: Torment", Daily MTG, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- ↑ Mark Rosewater. (January 14, 2002.) "Make It Black", Daily MTG, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- ↑ Wizards of the Coast. (June 11, 2003.) "Eighth Edition Rollout: Judgment", Daily MTG, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- ↑ Mark Rosewater. (July 2, 2012.) "Old Times", Daily MTG, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- ↑ Scott McGough. (2002.) Odyssey Cycle, Book II: Chainer's Torment, Wizards of the Coast. ISBN-13 978-0786926961.
- ↑ Randy Brühl. (February 26, 2002.) "Ask Wizards - February 26, 2002", Daily MTG, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- ↑ Mark Rosewater. (January 7, 2002.) "A Nightmare to Remember", Daily MTG, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- ↑ 8.0 8.1 Wizards of the Coast. (N/A..) "Torment Frequently Asked Questions", Daily MTG, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- ↑ Ben Bleiweiss. (July 17, 2002.) "Set of Five, Part 2", Daily MTG, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.