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Thread: Paying Emry's mana cost

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    Paying Emry's mana cost

    When I learned to play MtG many moons ago, it was standard practice to tap your mana first and then announce the spell you were casting. David Mills was even disqualified from the finals of a pro tour event in 1997 because he repeatedly paid mana after announcing the spell, which was not allowed at the time. These days, though, it has become accepted to pay mana after putting a spell on the stack, and in most cases it makes no difference provided your opponent lets you complete your actions without responding.

    Suppose I have a Lotus Petal and one other artifact on the battlefield and Emry, Lurker of the Loch in hand. I have to pay for Emry with the Lotus Petal since I have no other blue sources. If I have to pay mana before announcing the spell, then Emry costs 1U, but if I can pay mana afterwards, then Emry costs only U. Which is correct? I've found that xmage uses the latter, but I have my doubts this is right.

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    Re: Paying Emry's mana cost

    The correct sequence is more or less set costs, announce casting targets/modes, pay. Emry is a legal cast off land and Petal. If Emry also had delve it could be entirely cast with Petal.

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    Re: Paying Emry's mana cost

    Indeed, it sounds like Xmage is perfectly correct in this case.

    601.2f The player determines the total cost of the spell. Usually this is just the mana cost. Some spells have additional or alternative costs. Some effects may increase or reduce the cost to pay, or may provide other alternative costs. Costs may include paying mana, tapping permanents, sacrificing permanents, discarding cards, and so on. The total cost is the mana cost or alternative cost (as determined in rule 601.2b), plus all additional costs and cost increases, and minus all cost reductions. If multiple cost reductions apply, the player may apply them in any order. If the mana component of the total cost is reduced to nothing by cost reduction effects, it is considered to be {0}. It can't be reduced to less than {0}. Once the total cost is determined, any effects that directly affect the total cost are applied. Then the resulting total cost becomes "locked in." If effects would change the total cost after this time, they have no effect.

    601.2g If the total cost includes a mana payment, the player then has a chance to activate mana abilities (see rule 605, "Mana Abilities"). Mana abilities must be activated before costs are paid.


    601.2h The player pays the total cost in any order. Partial payments are not allowed. Unpayable costs can't be paid.
    So, you determine "total cost" before activating mana abilities. So, in you case, Petal does "count as two mana" in a sense.
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