Ivory Tower MTG Card


Card setsReleased in 19 setsSee all
Mana cost
Converted mana cost1
RarityUncommon
TypeArtifact

Ivory Tower Key Takeaways

  1. Ivory Tower fosters life gain, indirectly aiding card advantage by allowing players to draw more safely.
  2. The card saves mana, enabling resource reallocation to enhance board presence or key interactions.
  3. It rewards players who adeptly manage a hand with instant-speed spells, augmenting its life gain effect.

Text of card Ivory Tower

During your upkeep phase, gain 1 life for each card in your hand above four.

Valuing scholarship above all else, the inhabitants of the Ivory Tower reward those who sacrifice power for knowledge.

Despite its age, Ivory Tower remains a nuanced asset for maintaining life totals while enabling strategic depth in deck construction and gameplay. It’s a card that rewards careful hand management, empowering a more calculated MTG experience.

Key Takeaways

  1. Ivory Tower fosters life gain, indirectly aiding card advantage by allowing players to draw more safely.
  2. The card saves mana, enabling resource reallocation to enhance board presence or key interactions.
  3. It rewards players who adeptly manage a hand with instant-speed spells, augmenting its life gain effect.

Card Pros

Card Advantage: Though not a direct avenue for drawing cards, Ivory Tower can help maintain a player’s life total, indirectly supporting card advantage strategies. With each upkeep, the life gain can act as a cushion, allowing opportunities to draw additional cards while conserving resources for other strategic plays.

Resource Acceleration: One of the subtle benefits of Ivory Tower is its ability to accelerate resources by saving on spells and abilities that would otherwise be spent on maintaining one’s life total. This saved mana and effort can then be reallocated to advancing board state or saving for critical interactions.

Instant Speed: While Ivory Tower itself does not operate at instant speed, it rewards players who do. A hand flush with instants can be maintained until the last possible moment, maximizing the life gained during each of your upkeeps and enabling you to play a more reactive and responsive game.

Card Cons

Discard Requirement: Engaging with the Ivory Tower card necessitates maintaining a considerable number of cards in your hand to reap the life-gain benefits. As such, this requirement can become cumbersome during gameplay, as it forces players to prioritize hand size over other strategic plays, which might limit flexibility in tight situations.

Specific Mana Cost: The Ivory Tower card has an initial low cost for inclusion in a deck, but its effectiveness is often tied to the ability to play it in conjunction with other cards that support a high hand size strategy. Without such synergies, the mana invested in the Tower could be seen as underutilized especially in decks focusing on quick aggression or varied mana bases.

Comparatively High Mana Cost: While the mana cost to get the Ivory Tower onto the battlefield is not exorbitant, it is imperative to consider the opportunity cost. MTG hosts a vast array of artifacts and options that could potentially offer more immediate or versatile advantages for the same, or lower, mana investment. Players must weigh these alternatives against the potential incremental life gains the Tower can provide in the longer-term game.

Reasons to Include in Your Collection

Versatility: Ivory Tower offers unique utility, especially in decks prioritizing life gain and hand size. It can be an efficient defensive tool in various formats.

Combo Potential: This card integrates well with strategies that aim to maximize hand size, thus triggering its life gain ability. It pairs well with cards that benefit from life gain or require large hand sizes.

Meta-Relevance: In environments where games tend to stretch into numerous turns, the consecutive life gains from Ivory Tower can be a game changer, providing a consistent defensive advantage over time.

Similar Cards

Ivory Tower is a unique artifact in Magic: The Gathering that rewards players for having a large hand size. When looking at the landscape of MTG cards, it’s noteworthy to compare Ivory Tower with Library of Leng. Both of these cards have a focus on maintaining a substantial hand, but Library of Leng gives you control over your discards, allowing you to place them on top of your library instead of losing them.

Further comparison can be drawn with Venser’s Journal, which also grants life based on the cards in your hand. While Venser’s Journal lacks Ivory Tower’s originality in setup and lower casting cost, it compensates with a consistent life gain that doesn’t diminish as your life total increases. In addition, Venser’s Journal has no maximum hand size benefit, offering a powerful end-game advantage.

What sets Ivory Tower apart in this niche is its early game potential. Its low cost enables it to synergize effortlessly with strategies aimed at maximizing hand size quickly, giving its user a significant advantage. While each of these cards serves a similar purpose, the utility of Ivory Tower in the right deck is unmatched, providing both a defensive buffer and an incentive to keep your hand filled to the brim.

How to beat

Ivory Tower is a unique artifact within MTG which offers life gain potential based on the number of cards in a player’s hand during their upkeep. To effectively counter this card’s advantage, one strategy is to limit the opponent’s hand size. This can be achieved with cards that force the player to discard or spells that cause them to play out their hand quickly. Hand disruption is a key tactic here – think Thoughtseize or Duress that surgically remove key pieces from the grip of your adversary.

Another approach to beat Ivory Tower is by utilizing direct damage or “burn” spells to reduce the life total faster than the Tower can replenish it. Cards like Lightning Bolt or Rift Bolt are prime choices. Additionally, aggressive decks that focus on swarming the battlefield with creatures can outpace the incremental life gain provided by Ivory Tower. The aim is to apply enough pressure, making the life gained irrelevant when facing potential lethal damage.

Overall, while Ivory Tower can be a powerful card under the right circumstances, knowing its weaknesses and including appropriate countermeasures in your deck is crucial. Hand disruption and direct damage are effective strategies to ensure that the life buffer offered by Ivory Tower remains insufficient.

BurnMana Recommendations

Understanding the delicate nuances of each card can be the difference between defeat and dominating the MTG battlefield. As you contemplate the possibilities of Ivory Tower within your arsenal, consider the interplay of strategy and synergy that this unique artifact can bring to your game. Its potential for life gain is not merely a buffer but a foundation upon which many strategies can be built. Diving deeper into its applications and surrounding card interactions reveals the mosaic of plays at your fingertips. If your curiosity is piqued and your strategist’s mind is buzzing with ideas, we welcome you to join the ranks of players who turn potential into power on the plane of MTG. Enhance your game with insights that lead to victory—step into our community and expand your mastery of the game.

Similar Cards

Ivory Tower is a unique artifact in Magic: The Gathering that rewards players for having a large hand size. When looking at the landscape of MTG cards, it’s noteworthy to compare Ivory Tower with Library of Leng. Both of these cards have a focus on maintaining a substantial hand, but Library of Leng gives you control over your discards, allowing you to place them on top of your library instead of losing them.

Further comparison can be drawn with Venser’s Journal, which also grants life based on the cards in your hand. While Venser’s Journal lacks Ivory Tower’s originality in setup and lower casting cost, it compensates with a consistent life gain that doesn’t diminish as your life total increases. In addition, Venser’s Journal has no maximum hand size benefit, offering a powerful end-game advantage.

What sets Ivory Tower apart in this niche is its early game potential. Its low cost enables it to synergize effortlessly with strategies aimed at maximizing hand size quickly, giving its user a significant advantage. While each of these cards serves a similar purpose, the utility of Ivory Tower in the right deck is unmatched, providing both a defensive buffer and an incentive to keep your hand filled to the brim.

Similar cards to Ivory Tower to use in your decks

Library of Leng - Limited Edition Alpha (LEA)
Venser's Journal - Scars of Mirrodin (SOM)

Where to buy Ivory Tower MTG card?

If you're looking to purchase Ivory Tower MTG card by a specific set like Antiquities and Foreign Black Border, 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 Ivory Tower and other MTG cards:

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Ivory Tower card sets

The Ivory Tower Magic the Gathering card was released in 12 different sets between 1994-03-04 and 2022-11-18. Illustrated by 3 different artists.

#ReleaseNameCodeSymbolNumberFrameLayoutBorderArtist
11994-03-04AntiquitiesATQ 531993normalblackMargaret Organ-Kean
21994-04-01Foreign Black BorderFBB 2541993normalblackMargaret Organ-Kean
31994-04-01Revised Edition3ED 2541993normalwhiteMargaret Organ-Kean
41994-06-21Summer Magic / EdgarSUM 2541993normalwhiteMargaret Organ-Kean
51995-04-01Fourth Edition4ED 3281993normalwhiteMargaret Organ-Kean
61995-04-01Fourth Edition Foreign Black Border4BB 3281993normalblackMargaret Organ-Kean
71996-05-02Pro Tour Collector SetPTC mj3281993normalgoldMargaret Organ-Kean
81996-05-02Pro Tour Collector SetPTC bl3281993normalgoldMargaret Organ-Kean
91996-05-02Pro Tour Collector SetPTC ll3281993normalgoldMargaret Organ-Kean
101996-05-02Pro Tour Collector SetPTC pp328sb1993normalgoldMargaret Organ-Kean
111996-05-02Pro Tour Collector SetPTC ml3281993normalgoldMargaret Organ-Kean
121996-05-02Pro Tour Collector SetPTC shr3281993normalgoldMargaret Organ-Kean
132007-09-10Masters EditionME1 1581997normalblackMargaret Organ-Kean
142010-08-27From the Vault: RelicsV10 42003normalblackJason Chan
152014-06-16Vintage MastersVMA 2692015normalblackJason Chan
162022-11-18The Brothers' War Retro ArtifactsBRR 231997normalblackJason Chan
172022-11-18The Brothers' War Retro ArtifactsBRR 86z1997normalblackIrina Nordsol
182022-11-18The Brothers' War Retro ArtifactsBRR 861997normalblackIrina Nordsol
192022-11-18The Brothers' War Art SeriesABRO 632015art_seriesborderless

Card legalities

Magic the Gathering formats where Ivory Tower has restrictions

FormatLegality
OldschoolLegal
HistoricLegal
LegacyLegal
OathbreakerLegal
GladiatorLegal
CommanderLegal
PremodernLegal
VintageLegal
DuelLegal
PredhLegal
BrawlLegal
PennyLegal
TimelessLegal

Rules and information about Ivory Tower

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

DateText
2004-10-04 If you have four or fewer cards in your hand when Ivory Tower's ability resolves, the ability has no effect.

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