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Time Spiral Magic The Gathering Cards

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Time Spiral is a Magic: The Gathering expansion set, released October 6, 2006. The set is laden with references to previous Magic: the Gathering sets and is the first to take place in Dominaria since the May 2003 set Scourge. The references are reflected in the card design, which incorporates special rules from older sets, and in the "Timeshifted" cards, which are cards reprinted from older sets using the older card design (abandoned three years previous with the 2003 release of Core Set 8th Edition.) The Time Spiral expansion symbol is an hourglass.

Time Spiral is the first set in the block of the same name. (A "block" consists of three theme-related expansion sets released over a period of a year.) It is followed by Planar Chaos, which deals with alternate timelines and includes many cards reprinted from previous sets but changed in some fundamental way, and Future Sight, which is forward-looking, both in that it includes cards from settings not previously explored in previous sets and in that it includes many different new rules.

As with all Magic: the Gathering sets in recent years, Time Spiral is accompanied by a tie-in novel of the same name. Time Spiral, written by Scott McGough, focuses on the efforts of Teferi to deal with the consequences of phasing out Shiv and Zhalfir during the Phyrexian Invasion. This novel was published in September 2006.

Time Spiral was codenamed "Snap" during development.

In his preview articles, Mark Rosewater described Time Spiral as an expansion focused on the past, with its successors Planar Chaos and Future Sight to be centered around the present and future, respectively. This design was achieved through keywords and mechanics that interact with time, as well as cards based on those in previous sets, to promote a sense of nostalgia.

The size of the set had been in dispute prior to release, as Wizards issued two different sizes for the set, 301 and 422. Retailers were initially told that the set would include 422 cards, Wizards of the Coast sent a retraction email explaining that the set would in fact be 301 cards in size. The set size was then confirmed to be 301 cards, with 121 commons, 80 uncommons, 80 rares and 20 basic land.. The confusion came about because Time Spiral was released with a 'sub-set', 121 timeshifted cards in addition to the 301-card basic set. After the set officially went public, Rosewater said that Wizards of the Coast had released the apparently conflicting figures by accident, but ended up just as happy to have done so after seeing the speculation they fueled.

Time Spiral booster packs marked Wizards of the Coast's new premium card distribution method, where premium cards replace commons, as opposed to replacing a card of the premium's standard rarity.

Creature types from previous block sets, such as Kavu, Merfolk, Thallids and Slivers, have returned, in addition to new incarnations of old cards. Eight keyword abilities from past sets also returned in Time Spiral, with some keywords not having appeared since 1997: Buyback, Echo, Flanking, Flashback, Madness, Morph, Shadow and Storm. Old non-keyword mechanics like rebels, spellshapers, and nightmares also appear on new cards. There are also several cards which directly allude to older, well-known cards, such as the Magus cycle: creatures that are functional reprints of the cards Cursed Scroll, Nevinyrral's Disk, Memory Jar, Mirror Universe, and Candelabra of Tawnos; and a cycle of slivers.

To further represent the temporal chaos afflicting Dominaria, Time Spiral was released with an additional sub-set of 121 Timeshifted cards; reprints of certain cards taken from every set prior to Mirrodin. These cards have all been updated to meet the current rules and keywording. To differentiate them from normal cards, Timeshifted cards are printed in the pre-8th Edition card frame, with a purple Time Spiral expansion symbol. The Timeshifted cards are distributed one per booster pack and three per tournament pack (replacing a common card), and appear in the preconstructed decks. According to DCI-distributed tournament primers, Timeshifted cards are tournament legal wherever the main set is.

Timeshifted cards also appear in Planar Chaos and Future Sight, but are not direct reprints of older cards.

Three keyword mechanics based on the theme of time were introduced in Time Spiral: Flash, Split Second, and Suspend.

  • Flash allows a card to be played as though it were an Instant, regardless of its card type. Older cards with this ability have been updated with this keyword.
  • Split second prevents spells or abilities from being played after a spell with that keyword is on the stack. Each colour has two cards with Split Second - one uncommon and one rare. Common cards were not given the ability because they are traditionally designed to avoid making reference to Magic: the Gathering's more complex rules, such as the stack.[citation needed] All cards with Split Second are instants, except Celestial Crusader, a creature that also has Flash, and Quagnoth. 
  • Suspend echoes the Tempest card Ertai's Meddling and is written on a card as Suspend X,Cost. The player can pay the cheaper suspend cost instead of the mana cost and put X counters on the card. Every turn, during its controller's upkeep, a counter is removed. The card remains removed from the game and will only come into play only when all the counters are removed from it. Creatures played via Suspend gain Haste.

* All cards are Mint/NM and in English unless otherwise specified.
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