MTG Bloomburrow: New mechanics explained

Jack Bye

Magic: The Gathering’s Bloomburrow set has drawn in players ever since its first announcement thanks to its adorable art design, but its mechanics are well worth getting excited for too.

Bloomburrow is shaping up to be a set that will be highly enjoyable to draft, and its powerful card designs will see a great deal of play in Commander and other popular formats.

We’ll walk you through how all of the new mechanics present in MTG’s Bloomburrow set work, from the token-spawning Offspring to ingenious new modal spells that use Pawprints.

How Offspring works in MTG

MTG Bloomburrow Offspring

This ability uses tokens to build up your board state and get an additional use out of abilities. When a Creature with Offspring is cast, you may pay an additional amount of generic mana – usually 1 or 2 – to Create a token copy of the Creature.

This token comes in as a 1/1, so it doesn’t emulate Universes Beyond: Warhammer 40K’s Squad ability in putting identical beaters onto the board. However, the Offspring does come with identical type, cost, and abilities to the ‘parent’ card, allowing you to double up on triggered and activated abilities, as well as typal effects.

How Gift works in MTG

MTG Bloomburrow Gift greed

An interesting new additional cost mechanic that comes with a layer of social play, Gift revolves around giving opponents a positive effect when casting a card, ranging from card draw to adding +1/+1 counters.

Promising the Gift is optional, so you don’t have to help an opponent out, but doing so makes the card you’re casting better by providing an additional bonus or negating a downside.

How Forage works in MTG

MTG Bloomburrow Forage

Golgari decks have long been among MTG’s best for graveyard interaction, and this new mechanic fits particularly well with green and black mana, combining graveyard stacking with Food tokens.

A card with an additional Forage cost can be paid by either exiling three cards from your grave or sacrificing a Food token. Whether you’ve been stockpiling tokens or stacking the grave with self-mill Forage should be a breeze to activate for many of Bloomburrow’s archetypes.

How Valiant works in MTG

MTG Bloomburrow Valiant

A new ability that will significantly benefit Bloomburrow’s mousefolk, playing into popular Boros buffing strategies as popularised by Commanders like Feather, the Redeemed.

Valiant activates whenever a Creature becomes the target of a spell or ability you control for the first time each turn. Unlike the classic Heroic ability, Valiant has a limit on how often it can occur on a Creature each turn, but it is more flexible thanks to being triggered by abilities as well as spells.

With a board full of Valiant Creatures, even initially weak-seeming attackers can gain the advantage and overpower any blockers opponents might put in their way.

How Expend works in MTG

MTG Bloomburrow Expend

Big-mana decks are often the purview of Simic, but in Bloomburrow, Gruul are the real big spenders. Expend provides bonuses by tracking how much mana you have cumulatively spent each turn and then granting bonuses when certain thresholds are reached.

Ramping as quickly as possible has its advantages when using this ability, as some cards will contain multiple Expend thresholds. By hitting all of them in the same turn, you’ll now only be able to cast huge, impactful spells, but gain multiple bonuses for doing so.

How Pawprint works in MTG

MTG Bloomburrow Pawprint Season

MTG fans have been treated to multiple excellent modal abilities across 2024’s sets, with Outlaws of Thunder Junction’s Spree proving to be a highlight.

Bloomburrow’s Pawprint Season cards look to match the heights achieved by Spree, granting players choice and flexibility in the abilities they activate. Each of these cards comes with several pawprint symbols that are used as a resource to cast its different abilities.

Each ability can be cast multiple times, as long as you have pawprints remaining, but some abilities will cost more than others. Feel free to mix and match or go all in on one ability and stack up a whole bunch of casts.

MTG players will be able to dive into Bloomburrow and enjoy its varied, exciting mechanics when the set launches on August 2.

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