Hypnotic Specter MTG Card


Card setsReleased in 24 setsSee all
Mana cost
Converted mana cost3
RarityUncommon
TypeCreature — Specter
Abilities Flying
Power 2
Toughness 2

Hypnotic Specter Key Takeaways

  1. Hypnotic Specter excels in card advantage and resource acceleration, undermining opponent strategies effectively.
  2. Its specific mana requirements and efficiency may waver in fast-paced games or multicolor decks.
  3. Versatile and meta-relevant, the Specter fits into various black decks, enhancing discard strategies.

Text of card Hypnotic Specter

Flying An opponent damaged by Specter must discard a card at random from his or her hand. Ignore this effect if opponent has no cards left in hand.

"...There was no trace/ Of aught on that illumined face..." —Samuel Coleridge, "Phantom"

Delving into the world of MTG, the Hypnotic Specter card stands as a paragon of disruptive power, rendering it a tactical asset with pros and cons to weigh.

Key Takeaways

  1. Hypnotic Specter excels in card advantage and resource acceleration, undermining opponent strategies effectively.
  2. Its specific mana requirements and efficiency may waver in fast-paced games or multicolor decks.
  3. Versatile and meta-relevant, the Specter fits into various black decks, enhancing discard strategies.

Card Pros

Card Advantage: With its flying ability, Hypnotic Specter dodges many ground defenses and, upon dealing damage to a player, forces them to discard a card at random. This disruption not only gives you an informational advantage but can actively deplete your opponent’s resources, often removing key cards from their hand without them having any control over which ones are discarded.

Resource Acceleration: This iconic creature may not directly produce additional mana, but by pressuring your opponent’s hand from the early turns, it accelerates your resource dominance on the battlefield. Each discarded card translates into potential mana your opponent won’t be able to use, further tilting the scales in your favor as you erode their capacity to respond to your threats.

Instant Speed: Although Hypnotic Specter itself isn’t an instant, its mere presence on the board compels opponents to play at instant speed, often keeping mana open to try and deal with it immediately. This can slow down their game plan, giving you an indirect advantage by forcing them to play more defensively and reactively. As they hold back resources in anticipation, your strategic options expand.

Card Cons

Discard Requirement: During each attack, Hypnotic Specter imposes a discard at random on the opponent. While this can disrupt your opponent’s strategy, it might not always hit a key card, making the outcome somewhat unreliable.

Specific Mana Cost: Hypnotic Specter demands both black mana and generic mana to be cast, potentially limiting its incorporation into multicolor decks that might struggle with color consistency.

Comparatively High Mana Cost: With a mana cost of three, including two black mana, there are times when other cards could provide immediate board presence or utility, making the specter potentially less efficient in fast-paced games where early board development is crucial.

Reasons to Include in Your Collection

Versatility: Hypnotic Specter’s ability to fit into an array of black decks makes it a powerful and flexible choice. Its flying trait allows for consistent damage, while its hand-disruption ability can destabilize your opponent’s game plan.

Combo Potential: Pairing Hypnotic Specter with cards that force opponents to discard can amplify its impact. Its synergy with discard-enforcing spells or effects, like “Mind Twist” or “Liliana’s Caress,” can devastate an opponent’s strategy and resources.

Meta-Relevance: In metas where opponents rely heavily on specific cards for their strategy, Hypnotic Specter’s disruptive ability becomes immensely valuable. It continuously pressures the opponent, turning each successful attack into a potential game-changer by whittling down their hand.

Similar Cards

The Hypnotic Specter is a powerful and iconic card in Magic the Gathering, offering players a potent combination of flying and disruptive abilities. When looking at its closest relatives in the game, one might compare it to Blightning. While Blightning deals damage and forces card discard without requiring an attack, it falls short in being a recurring threat. The Hypnotic Specter, on the other hand, can chip away at an opponent’s hand turn after turn if left unchecked.

Another counterpart is the Rack, a punishing artifact suited for harassment decks focused on depleting opponents’ hands, much like the Specter. Yet the dynamic nature of the Specter as a creature adds a dimension of battlefield presence that the Rack lacks. Not to forget Liliana’s Caress which mirrors that pressure on an opponent’s hand size, but unlike our Specter, doesn’t offer a body to defend or challenge in combat.

Evaluating such comparisons highlights the enduring value of Hypnotic Specter in MTG. It seamlessly blends offence with passive control, a trait that ensures its role as a formidable contender among cards with hand disruption capabilities.

How to beat

The Hypnotic Specter stands out in MTG as an iconic creature capable of wreaking havoc on an opponent’s hand. Its power lies in causing the discard of a card at random from a player’s hand whenever it deals combat damage to them. But with strategy, this menacing card can be overcome. Protection from black spells are particularly effective, as they can prevent Hypnotic Specter from even touching your hand.

Another approach is to remove it before it gets a chance to attack. Instant-speed removal spells are key, giving you the ability to eliminate the Specter on your opponent’s turn or right after it’s been cast. Creatures with flying or reach can also serve as defensive barriers, ready to block and take down the flying menace. Counterspells also play a crucial role, allowing control players to negate the Specter’s cast altogether, preserving your hand and maintaining card advantage.

Ultimately, the best method to beat a Hypnotic Specter requires a mix of prevention, timely removal, and block strategies. By keeping your defenses up and utilizing the tools at your disposal, this once-dreaded threat can be efficiently managed on the battlefield.

BurnMana Recommendations

Dive deeper into the world of MTG and master the art of disruption with Hypnotic Specter. Embrace the tactical edge this card offers as it relentlessly pressures your opponent’s hand and shapes the flow of the game. Understanding both its strengths and limitations is key to leveraging its full potential. Enhance your decks with this formidable creature and explore synergies that will disrupt your opponents’ plans and pave your way to victory. Looking to refine your strategic approach and incorporate this classic card into your collection? Visit us for insights, deck-building tips, and advanced strategies to turn the Hypnotic Specter into your ace in the game.

Similar Cards

The Hypnotic Specter is a powerful and iconic card in Magic the Gathering, offering players a potent combination of flying and disruptive abilities. When looking at its closest relatives in the game, one might compare it to Blightning. While Blightning deals damage and forces card discard without requiring an attack, it falls short in being a recurring threat. The Hypnotic Specter, on the other hand, can chip away at an opponent’s hand turn after turn if left unchecked.

Another counterpart is the Rack, a punishing artifact suited for harassment decks focused on depleting opponents’ hands, much like the Specter. Yet the dynamic nature of the Specter as a creature adds a dimension of battlefield presence that the Rack lacks. Not to forget Liliana’s Caress which mirrors that pressure on an opponent’s hand size, but unlike our Specter, doesn’t offer a body to defend or challenge in combat.

Evaluating such comparisons highlights the enduring value of Hypnotic Specter in MTG. It seamlessly blends offence with passive control, a trait that ensures its role as a formidable contender among cards with hand disruption capabilities.

Similar cards to Hypnotic Specter to use in your decks

Blightning - Shards of Alara (ALA)
The Rack - Antiquities (ATQ)
Liliana's Caress - Magic 2011 (M11)

Where to buy Hypnotic Specter MTG card?

If you're looking to purchase Hypnotic Specter MTG card by a specific set like Limited Edition Alpha and Limited Edition Beta, there are several reliable options to consider. One of the primary sources is your local game store, where you can often find booster packs, individual cards, and preconstructed decks from current and some past sets. They often offer the added benefit of a community where you can trade with other players.

For a broader inventory, particularly of older sets, online marketplaces like TCGPlayer, Card Kingdom and Card Market offer extensive selections and allow you to search for cards from specific sets. Larger e-commerce platforms like eBay and Amazon also have listings from various sellers, which can be a good place to look for sealed product and rare finds.

Additionally, Magic’s official site often has a store locator and retailer lists for finding Wizards of the Coast licensed products. Remember to check for authenticity and the condition of the cards when purchasing, especially from individual sellers on larger marketplaces.

Below is a list of some store websites where you can buy the Hypnotic Specter and other MTG cards:

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Hypnotic Specter card sets

The Hypnotic Specter Magic the Gathering card was released in 20 different sets between 1993-08-05 and 2022-11-28. Illustrated by 2 different artists.

#ReleaseNameCodeSymbolNumberFrameLayoutBorderArtist
11993-08-05Limited Edition AlphaLEA 1121993normalblackDouglas Shuler
21993-10-04Limited Edition BetaLEB 1131993normalblackDouglas Shuler
31993-12-01Unlimited Edition2ED 1131993normalwhiteDouglas Shuler
41993-12-10Intl. Collectors' EditionCEI 1131993normalblackDouglas Shuler
51993-12-10Collectors' EditionCED 1131993normalblackDouglas Shuler
61994-04-01Revised Edition3ED 1151993normalwhiteDouglas Shuler
71994-04-01Foreign Black BorderFBB 1151993normalblackDouglas Shuler
81994-06-21Summer Magic / EdgarSUM 1151993normalwhiteDouglas Shuler
91995-04-01Fourth Edition Foreign Black Border4BB 1421993normalblackDouglas Shuler
101995-04-01Fourth Edition4ED 1421993normalwhiteDouglas Shuler
111996-05-02Pro Tour Collector SetPTC gb1421993normalgoldDouglas Shuler
121996-05-02Pro Tour Collector SetPTC ll1421993normalgoldDouglas Shuler
132002-06-24Magic Online PromosPRM 350402003normalblackDouglas Shuler
142005-07-29Ninth Edition9ED 1412003normalwhiteGreg Staples
152005-07-29Ninth Edition9ED 141★2003normalblackGreg Staples
162006-01-01Magic Player Rewards 2006P06 12003normalblackDouglas Shuler
172007-07-13Tenth Edition10E 1512003normalblackGreg Staples
182007-07-13Tenth Edition10E 151★2003normalblackGreg Staples
192009-07-17Magic 2010M10 1002003normalblackGreg Staples
202019-11-07Mystery BoosterMB1 6892003normalblackGreg Staples
212019-11-21Historic Anthology 1HA1 72015normalblackGreg Staples
222020-09-26The ListPLST M10-1002003normalblackGreg Staples
232022-11-2830th Anniversary Edition30A 4061997normalblackDouglas Shuler
242022-11-2830th Anniversary Edition30A 1092015normalblackDouglas Shuler

Card legalities

Magic the Gathering formats where Hypnotic Specter has restrictions

FormatLegality
OldschoolLegal
HistoricbrawlLegal
HistoricLegal
LegacyLegal
PaupercommanderRestricted
OathbreakerLegal
GladiatorLegal
CommanderLegal
ModernLegal
PremodernLegal
VintageLegal
DuelLegal
PredhLegal
PennyLegal
TimelessLegal

Rules and information about Hypnotic Specter

The reference guide for Magic: The Gathering Hypnotic Specter card rulings provides official rulings, any errata issued, as well as a record of all the functional modifications that have occurred.

DateText
2008-08-01 The ability triggers even if the Specter’s damage is being redirected to an opponent. It does not trigger if damage that would have been dealt to the opponent is redirected to a nonopponent player or a creature, or if the damage is prevented.

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