MTG Snow Mechanic – Rules and Interactions Explained

MTG Snow mechanic can be quite complex. In this article, we’ll break it down to the basics, so you’ll master it easily. We’ll also answer many different questions players have with the Snow mechanic, such as:

  • How does Snow mana work?
  • Can you add Snow-Covered basic lands in draft?
  • And more!

Let’s get right to it.

How Does MTG Snow Mechanic Work?

Snow is a supertype (like basic and legendary). So there are snow creatures, snow instants, snow lands, etc. Snow doesn’t do anything particular by itself. On the other hand, it opens up various synergies.

Snow mana is simply mana produced by a snow permanent. Usually, snow mana still has a color.

Snow activation costs (represented by a snowflake icon) can be paid with any snow mana – regardless of its color.


Let’s take a look at some examples. First, here are cards that produce snow mana.

Snow Mana

Basic snow lands produce color of respective color. Since these lands have the Snow supertype, that mana is snow mana. So Snow-Covered Island produces blue snow mana, and Highland Forest can produce red or green snow mana.

MTG Snow Mana Rules Replicating Ring

Lands aren’t the only type of card that produce snow mana. For example, Replicating Ring can produce mana of any color. Since it’s a snow artifact, that mana counts as snow mana. So, if a snow card produces mana, it produces snow mana.

One final example, is an older card, called Boreal Druid. This one produces colorless snow mana.

Snow Activation Costs

Let’s say you have Narfi, Betrayer King in your graveyard.

Narfi, Betrayer King Snow Activation Costs

To get him back you’ll need to pay 3 snow mana. Of which color? Doesn’t matter. You only need three mana produced by a snow source.

Caring About Snow Mana

Cards can care about snow mana in various ways. Ice-Fang Coatl from Modern Horizons, cares about how many snow permanents you control.

Some cards, like Boreal Outrider just want you to spend snow mana on other spells to get a bonus effect. This time it’s also important which color that snow mana is. If you want a bonus for your blue creature, you’ll have to spend blue snow mana in order to get it.

So all in all, snow can really work in various ways. Probably the most important thing to remember is that snow mana is any mana that’s produced by a snow source.

MTG Snow – FAQ

Here are some of the most common questions players have about the MTG snow mechanic. If we didn’t answer your question, just leave a comment below. We’ll get back to you as quickly as possible.

Are snow-covered basic lands limited to four per deck in Constructed?

No. Snow-covered basic lands, have the same rule as regular basic lands in this regard. So you can have as many snow-covered basic lands in your deck as you like.

Snow-Covered Plains Basic Snow Land Kaldheim

How many snow-covered basic lands can I add to my Draft / Sealed deck?

Here rules are different from the ones concerning regular basic lands. You can only add as many snow-covered basic lands, as you have in your pool. That means as many as you opened in Sealed, or as many as you drafted in Draft.

Can you play snow-covered lands if you don’t have snow payoffs?

You can. The upside is that on the first few turns your opponent might not know which deck you’re playing. If you aren’t playing snow-covered basic lands, they can safely assume, you aren’t playing snow-matters cards.

Is there a downside for running snow-covered basic lands?

For a long time, the only downside to playing snow-covered basic lands was Freyalise’s Radiance, but that didn’t see much play in any format.

That’s now changed with Reidane, God of the Worthy. If your opponent is playing Reidane, your snow lands will enter the battlefield tapped.

Even if Reidane is a fringe playable (let’s say in 2% of all the decks), you probably shouldn’t be playing snow-covered basics just to bluff. The advantage you gain by bluffing is so abysmal compared to the very real downside of your lands coming into play tapped.


Flavor here is pretty self-explanatory. It’s cold, it’s snowing, and apparently that affects mana too. Some creatures work better in colder environments, and will grant you bonus effects if you spend snow mana on them.

Hopefully, climate change isn’t happening on Kaldheim.

MTG Snow Mechanic – Interactions

As we said before, snow cards work in various ways. So in this section we’ll mention just some of the most fun snow cards and interactions.

Jorn, God of Winter / Kaldring, the Rimestaff

Both sides of this card are simply amazing in a snow deck. If you build your deck correctly, Jorn won’t just untap some of your creatures, but all of your lands as well, which could effectively double your mana.

If your opponent manages to deal with your snow permanents, and 3/3 creature won’t be very good on the board, worry not. Just play Kaldring and start getting your snow cards back.

Marit Lage’s Slumber

Marit Lage's Slumber Snow Mechanic

While this card isn’t legal on Arena, you can play it in paper, most notably in Commander. It’s probably one of the more fun build-arounds for a snow centered deck. Who doesn’t like to get a big Marit Lage token?

Scrying Sheets

Scrying Sheets Snow Land

Another card that’s only available in paper, but insanely strong in a right deck. If your deck contains only snow cards, Scrying Sheets can essentially draw you a card for two mana. It also enters the play untapped and provides a colorless snow mana. What’s not to like?


That’s all about the MTG snow mechanic. Once again, if you have any more questions about it, you can ask us in the comments below.

For other Kaldheim mechanics you can check the following articles:

You can also find more information about the latest MTG set, on our Kaldheim spoiler page.

Until next time, have fun, and may your knowledge of the snow mechanic bring you many cool victories.

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