Affinity

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Affinity
Type: Static
Introduced: Mirrodin
Last Used: Fifth Dawn
Reminder Text: Affinity for (text) (This spell costs you {1} less to cast for each (text) you control.)
Statistics: 20 cards
  • {FUT Artifact symbol} 50%
  • {U} 45%
  • {R} 5%
Gatherer search for "Affinity"

Affinity is a keyword ability that reduces the mana cost of a spell by the number of permanents of a certain type that player controls.

Description[edit | edit source]

The ability is always written as "Affinity for [something]". The most common instance is "Affinity for artifacts" (see Frogmite). However, a cycle of Golems (consisting of Dross Golem, Oxidda Golem, Razor Golem, Spire Golem, and Tangle Golem) appeared in the Darksteel expansion, each with affinity for a particular basic land type.[1][2] Hum of the Radix functions as an "anti-affinity" enchantment, increasing by 1 the cost of all artifact spells for each artifact its controller owns. Mycosynth Golem grants affinity to artifacts for all artifact spells cast by its controller, in addition to having affinity for artifacts itself.

All tournament-legal cards with affinity were printed during the Mirrodin block, and contributed heavily to the Second Combo Winter. The mechanic was considered for a return in the Scars of Mirrodin block, but rejected because it had been so destructive for the metagame in its first appearance.[3]

Gearseeker Serpent from Kaladesh essentially has affinity for artifacts, though it does not use the keyword.

Rules[edit | edit source]

From the Comprehensive Rules (Commander 2016 (November 11, 2016))

702.40. Affinity

  • 702.40a Affinity is a static ability that functions while the spell with affinity is on the stack. “Affinity for [text]” means “This spell costs you {1} less to cast for each [text] you control.”
  • 702.40b If a spell has multiple instances of affinity, each of them applies.
From the glossary of the Comprehensive Rules (Commander 2016 (November 11, 2016))
Affinity
A keyword ability that reduces how much mana you need to spend to cast a spell. See rule 702.40, “Affinity.”

Rulings[edit | edit source]

  • The affinity ability reduces only the amount of generic mana you pay. It can't reduce how much nongeneric mana you pay.
  • Affinity can't reduce the cost to cast a spell to less than {0}.
  • Affinity doesn't change the spell's mana cost or converted mana cost. It just changes how much mana you pay to cast the spell.
  • The cost reduction is set before you have to pay any costs for the spell. If you sacrifice an artifact while paying the spell's costs, that artifact still counts toward the cost reduction.

Examples[edit | edit source]

  • Into Thin Air - {5}{U}
    Instant
    Affinity for artifacts (This spell costs {1} less to cast for each artifact you control.)
    Return target artifact to its owner's hand.

Notable cards with affinity[edit | edit source]

Frogmite, Myr Enforcer, Thoughtcast - used in affinity decks

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Mark Rosewater. (January 19, 2004.) “To Affinity And Beyond”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
  2. Aaron Forsythe. (July 30, 2004.) “The Power Behind Affinity”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
  3. Mark Rosewater, Drive to Work #263 "2010"