Mana cost

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The mana cost of a card or Hero Power determines how much mana is required to play that card from the hand or to use that Hero Power. The number is displayed inside a blue crystal in the upper left corner of each card, and at the top of each Hero Power. When a card is played or a Hero Power is used, its mana cost is deducted from the player's available mana for that turn.

All cards and Hero Powers have mana costs, even those not normally played from the hand (such as minions summoned by summon effects like  Murloc Tidehunter's Battlecry or  Unleash the Hounds). This is relevant when cards like  Evolve affect minions based on their cost, or when minions are returned to the hand.

Most cards have mana costs in the 0-10 range, while all playable Hero Powers cost 2 mana (with the exception of the Demon Hunter's  Demon Claws). However, some effects can modify mana costs (even though not below 0).

Mana cost might be considered an attribute or statistic of a card, but does not affect the card in combat. The mana cost of a card determines how early or late in the game it may be played and is usually an indicator of the card's overall power. The distribution of mana costs in a deck is the mana curve, an important strategic consideration.

Modifying costs[edit | edit source]

Effects may reduce or increase the cost of cards and Hero Powers, or set them to a specific value. These effects either are ongoing effects or act by creating cost-modification enchantments (for a complete list see Cards below).

  • Cards that modify their own mana cost (such as  Dread Corsair) only work while in the player's hand: they have no effect while the card is anywhere else, such as in the player's deck or in the battlefield (see in-hand effects for details). Most of them are ongoing effects, while a few ( Nerubian Prophet,  Knight of the Wild) are triggered effects.
  • Ongoing effects that modify the mana cost of other cards or Hero Powers (such as  Mana Wraith and  Maiden of the Lake) apply a modifier to all eligible cards currently in hand (but not to cards in play) and to eligible Hero Powers: removing or neutralising (for example by using Silence effects) the source of the effect will therefore immediately remove the modifier from any affected card or Hero Power.
Example: A  Mechwarper would allow a  Clockwork Gnome to be played for 0 mana, returned to the hand, and played for 0 mana again, but even with the Mechwarper in play a  Recombobulator would cause the Clockwork Gnome to be transformed into a 1-Cost minion, not a 0-Cost one.
  • Cost-modification enchantments that are attached to a card in a player's deck (such as due to  Renounce Darkness) are not removed when the modified card is drawn.
  • Cost-modification enchantments that are attached to a card in hand are removed once the modified card is played: effects which depend on mana cost will then use the original mana cost of the card and, if it is returned to the hand, re-playing it will cost the original amount.
Example: A  Bloodfen Raptor drawn with  Call Pet costs 0 mana when first played, but would cost 2 mana to re-play if returned to the hand by  Youthful Brewmaster, and would be transformed into a 2-Cost minion if targeted by  Recombobulator.
  • Some cost-modification enchantments (such as  Preparation and  Saboteur) are attached to a player instead of a card. Usually these enchantments have a limited duration and expire by themselves "the next time something happens" (which can be many turns later, such as for  Dragon Consort and  Fencing Coach) or "at the end of the turn". The only exception is  Raza the Chained, whose effect lasts for the rest of the game.

When there are multiple cost-modification effects, they are applied in the order in which they have been generated (from oldest to newest; notice that cards that were in a player's deck at the beginning of the game still have that timestamp when drawn); the only exception is  Summoning Portal, which is always applied first even if played last. Unlike Health/Attack enchantments and auras, cost-modification enchantments and auras have no special priority over one another.[1]

Example: If  Millhouse Manastorm is played followed by  Loatheb, spell costs are first set to 0, then increased by 5 for a final cost of 5. In the opposite order, spell costs would first increase by 5, then be set to 0, for a final cost of 0.
Example: If  Emperor Thaurissan's effect triggers, reducing the mana cost of an in-hand  Wolfrider to 2, and  Naga Sea Witch then comes into play, her effect immediately increases the Wolfrider card's cost to 5; at the end of that turn, Emperor Thaurissan triggers again, reducing the Wolfrider's mana cost to 4.
Example: If  Emperor Thaurissan's effect triggers, reducing the mana cost of an in-hand  War Golem to 6, and  Aviana then comes into play, her effect immediately reduces the War Golem card's cost to 1; at the end of that turn, Emperor Thaurissan triggers again, reducing the War Golem's mana cost to 0.
Example: If you have a  Naga Sea Witch in play and a  Fiery War Axe equipped and draw a  Dread Corsair from your deck, the Dread Corsair's final mana cost will be 5: the Dread Corsair card, being in your deck since the beginning of the game, is older than the Naga Sea Witch minion in play, and thus its effect is applied first, and then overwritten by the newer one by Naga Sea Witch. However, if you later return the Dread Corsair minion from the battlefield to your hand, it becomes a new Dread Corsair card, which is then newer than the Naga Sea Witch minion: thus, the Dread Corsair card's cost is first set to 5 by Naga Sea Witch and then, if you are still equipping the Fiery War Axe, it is reduced by 3, to a final mana cost of 2.
Example: If  Knight of the Wild triggered twice before  Aviana enters play, early cost-modification effects are overridden by the "newer" Aviana effect, for a final mana cost of 1; if you later summon another Beast, Knight of the Wild triggers again, reducing its mana cost to 0.
Example: If you play  Naga Sea Witch and then  Aviana, minion cards in your hand will cost 1; if you play Aviana and then Naga Sea Witch, minion cards in your hand will cost 5.[2]
Example: Suppose you have  Wilfred Fizzlebang on the battlefield. If you play  Aviana and then use  Life Tap, the minion card you draw will cost 0; if you use Life Tap and then play Aviana, the minion card you draw will cost 1.[3]
Example: If  Bright-Eyed Scout's Battlecry draws  Mountain Giant, its cost will be set to 5 regardless of the number of cards in hand, and the cost will not change as the hand gains or loses cards: since the Mountain Giant card was created at the beginning of the game, its effect is always considered older than the Bright-Eyed Scout's Battlecry.[4]
Example: If  Bright-Eyed Scout's Battlecry draws  Nerubian Prophet, its cost will be set to 5, and at the start of each subsequent turn its cost will drop to 4, 3, 2, and so on.

If a card's or Hero Power's modified cost would be negative, 0 is displayed and used instead (players can never gain mana from paying the cost of a card or Hero Power).

  • This minimum of 0 is only enforced after all other cost modifications have been taken into account: this allows reductions like  Far Sight to counteract subsequent increases such as  Loatheb's.
  • One may think of cards and Hero Powers as having two mana costs, an "actual" cost and a "hidden" cost. The hidden cost is simply the original mana cost with all subsequent modifications, and has no lower limit. The actual cost, which is displayed on the card or Hero Power and charged when the card is played or the Hero Power is used, is the greater of the hidden cost and 0.
Example: If  Far Sight draws an  Earth Shock, the Earth Shock has a hidden cost of -2 and an actual cost of 0; if the opponent then plays  Loatheb the hidden cost increases by 5 and becomes -2 + 5 = 3, and the actual cost rises to 3 too. Thus, since only actual costs are displayed, apparently Far Sight reduced the cost of Earth Shock only by 1 (instead of 3) and Loatheb increased it only by 3 (instead of 5): however, even though Far Sight's reduction of -3 was temporarily, partially nullified by the lower limit of 0, it still remained in effect for later recalculation of the mana cost.

If a card's modified cost is different from its base cost, its mana cost will be displayed in a different colour:

  • if the modified cost is lower than the base cost, it will be displayed in green;
  • if the modified cost is higher than the base cost, it will be displayed in red;
  • if a card's modified cost is equal to its base cost (for example because multiple cost modifying effects cancel each other out), the colour of its mana cost will not be altered.

Change Cost to Health[edit | edit source]

Main article: Change Cost to Health

Some cards cause the next card the player plays that turn to deal to their hero an amount of damage equal to the card's mana cost, instead of expending mana.

  • The mana costs of those cards are affected as usual by cost-modification effects, and thus their "Health cost" is modified accordingly.[5]
  • Despite these cards' ambiguous wording, their effects deal damage to the controlling hero, thus affecting Armor (if any) before reducing the hero's Health.
  • Playing an affected card will cost no mana. However, card text effects which consume mana (such as  Forbidden Ritual) are not altered.
  • The player must be Immune or have a combined Health and Armor total greater than the final mana cost of an affected card in order to be allowed to play it (regardless of their currently available mana).[6][7] Trying to play an affected card will otherwise result in an error message.[8]
  • Cards in hand that can be played using Cho'gall's or Seadevil Stinger's effect will have their mana cost highlighted by red bubbles.

Strategy[edit | edit source]

Main article: Mana curve

The mana cost of a card determines which round it will become available to play, as well as which cards it can be used in combination with. The mana curve of a deck describes how many cards are present at each mana cost, and is an important factor determining options available to a player based on the amount of mana available on each turn. When building a deck, it is wise to consider whether mana costs of cards and combinations follow the desired curve.

Expert players can also use this knowledge to predict which cards may be played on certain rounds.  Mind Control, for instance, generally only becomes playable from round 10 onwards, while a  Leeroy Jenkins +  Power Overwhelming combo is available once the warlock has 6 mana.

Cards that modify mana cost[edit | edit source]

For Wild format listings, see Mana cost/Wild format.

Swipe left or right to see the cards.
TTN 075t2.png
TTN 002t43.png
TTN 862t1.png
TTN 002t32.png
TTN 002t9.png
TTN 920t5.png
CORE EX1 145.png
TTN 858t1.png
TTN 737t3.png
CORE EX1 144.png
TTN 862t2.png
TTN 002t45.png
CORE SCH 158.png
UPCOMING 98740.png
ETC 106.png
TTN 450t3.png
ETC 312.png
CORE YOP 001.png
TOY 351t.png
WW 404.png
TOY 521t1.png
TOY 652t.png
TTN 095.png
UPCOMING 98749.png
JAM 006.png
CORE SCH 713.png
TTN 833.png
CORE EX1 611.png
TOY 037.png
CORE AV 226.png
ETC 206.png
JAM 026b.png
TTN 854.png
TTN 955.png
TTN 955B.png
TOY 381.png
UPCOMING 102376.png
TOY 353.png
WW 403.png
JAM 026.png
CORE UNG 941.png
TTN 851.png
TOY 907.png
CORE TSC 217.png
UPCOMING 98761.png
WW 422.png
ETC 079.png
WW 003.png
TOY 390.png
WW 325.png
TOY 805.png
CORE BT 801.png
TOY 507.png
CORE CS2 053.png
UPCOMING 100627.png
TTN 830.png
MIS 918.png
DEEP 002t.png
WW 335.png
ETC 813.png
UPCOMING 100369.png
ETC 335.png
RLK 570t1t1.png
ETC 085t2.png
TTN 924.png
ETC 200.png
TOY 800.png
TTN 468.png
TTN 485.png
UPCOMING 106063.png
WW 364t.png
DEEP 010.png
YOG 510.png
TOY 388.png
CORE NEW1 022.png
TOY 504.png
UPCOMING 105556.png
TTN 076t.png
WW 091.png
MIS 919.png
MIS 026.png
CORE BT 416.png
JAM 019.png
UPCOMING 99957.png
TOY 515.png
JAM 034.png
ETC 384.png
WW 430.png
WW 001t24.png
DEEP 999t5.png
WW 001t23.png
TOY 641.png
TOY 376.png
ETC 356.png
WW 351.png
TOY 355.png
ETC 371.png
DEEP 004.png
TOY 371.png
WW 429.png
TTN 841.png
TOY 351.png
TOY 521.png
TOY 806.png
ETC 376.png
TTN 723.png
TOY 652.png
TTN 085.png
WW 415.png
TOY 804.png
TTN 831.png
TTN 716.png
TTN 800.png
TTN 487.png
TTN 075.png
TTN 088.png
TTN 724t.png
CORE OG 028.png
JAM 016.png
TTN 858.png
TTN 862.png
UPCOMING 100616.png
WW 387.png
WW 025.png
TTN 954.png
TOY 519.png
MIS 918t.png
WW 336.png
TTN 724.png
TTN 737.png
UPCOMING 108614.png
WW 825.png
TTN 462.png
RLK 744.png
ETC 395.png
UPCOMING 101162.png
CORE EX1 586.png
TOY 883.png
TTN 459.png
WW 824t.png
CORE EX1 105.png
TOY 530.png
WW 373.png
CORE EX1 620.png
JAM 030.png

Cost-modifying effects can be categorized by which entities they affect.

Hero Powers[edit | edit source]


Swipe left or right to see the cards.
TTN 002t9.png
ETC 312.png
JAM 026b.png
TOY 381.png
JAM 026.png

Cards[edit | edit source]

The following cards have effects that modify the cost of other cards.


Swipe left or right to see the cards.
TTN 075t2.png
TTN 002t43.png
TTN 862t1.png
TTN 002t32.png
TTN 920t5.png
CORE EX1 145.png
TTN 737t3.png
CORE EX1 144.png
TTN 862t2.png
TTN 002t45.png
CORE SCH 158.png
UPCOMING 98740.png
ETC 106.png
TTN 450t3.png
CORE YOP 001.png
TOY 351t.png
WW 404.png
TOY 521t1.png
TOY 652t.png
TTN 095.png
UPCOMING 98749.png
JAM 006.png
CORE SCH 713.png
TTN 833.png
CORE EX1 611.png
TOY 037.png
CORE AV 226.png
ETC 206.png
TTN 854.png
TTN 955.png
TTN 955B.png
UPCOMING 102376.png
TOY 353.png
WW 403.png
CORE UNG 941.png
TTN 851.png
CORE TSC 217.png
UPCOMING 98761.png
WW 422.png
ETC 079.png
WW 003.png
TOY 390.png
TOY 805.png
TOY 507.png
CORE CS2 053.png
UPCOMING 100627.png
TTN 830.png
DEEP 002t.png
WW 335.png
ETC 813.png
UPCOMING 100369.png
ETC 335.png
RLK 570t1t1.png
ETC 085t2.png
TTN 924.png
ETC 200.png
TOY 800.png
TTN 468.png
TTN 485.png
UPCOMING 106063.png
WW 364t.png
TOY 388.png
TTN 076t.png
WW 091.png
UPCOMING 99957.png
TOY 515.png
JAM 034.png
WW 430.png
WW 001t24.png
DEEP 999t5.png
WW 001t23.png
TOY 641.png
TOY 376.png
WW 351.png
TOY 355.png
ETC 371.png
TOY 371.png
WW 429.png
TOY 351.png
TOY 521.png
TOY 806.png
ETC 376.png
TTN 723.png
TOY 652.png
WW 415.png
TTN 716.png
TTN 800.png
TTN 075.png
TTN 862.png
UPCOMING 100616.png
TTN 737.png
UPCOMING 108614.png
ETC 395.png
WW 824t.png

Self[edit | edit source]

The following cards modify their own mana cost while in hand. Most act on an ongoing basis based on current game conditions or history, but  Nerubian Prophet and  Knight of the Wild accumulate enchantments on themselves in response to game events that occur while in hand.


Swipe left or right to see the cards.
TOY 907.png
WW 325.png
CORE BT 801.png
MIS 918.png
DEEP 010.png
CORE NEW1 022.png
UPCOMING 105556.png
JAM 019.png
ETC 384.png
ETC 356.png
DEEP 004.png
TTN 841.png
TTN 085.png
TOY 804.png
TTN 831.png
TTN 088.png
TTN 724t.png
CORE OG 028.png
JAM 016.png
WW 387.png
WW 025.png
TTN 954.png
TOY 519.png
MIS 918t.png
WW 336.png
TTN 724.png
WW 825.png
TTN 462.png
RLK 744.png
UPCOMING 101162.png
CORE EX1 586.png
TOY 883.png
TTN 459.png
CORE EX1 105.png
TOY 530.png
WW 373.png
CORE EX1 620.png
JAM 030.png

Related cards[edit | edit source]

For Wild format listings, see Mana cost/Wild format.

Cost-affected cards[edit | edit source]

The following cards have effects that scale based on the mana cost of other existing cards.

  • The bigger the mana cost of the affected card, the greater the outcome of the cost-related effect.
  • These cards may either generate cards or affect existing cards in the player's hand, deck, or battlefield.

Swipe left or right to see the cards.
CORE LOOT 231.png
YOG 503.png
ETC 521.png
ETC 523.png
DEEP 026.png
ETC 417.png
JAM 028.png
RLK 082.png

Cost-specifying cards[edit | edit source]

The following cards only affect other existing cards which meet a specified cost-based criteria.

  • These cards only affect other existing cards in the player's hand, deck, or battlefield, and do not generate new cards based on a specific cost.
    • These cards do not affect themselves. For example, cost-specifying cards won't grant themselves extra stats or reduce their own cost, but may do those to other cards that meet a specified cost-based criteria.
      • Additionally, common forms of cost-specifying effects are ones that put specific-cost minions into the battlefield, or draw specific-cost cards, and naturally cards cannot refer to their own cost to do those to themselves.
  • The effects of these cards will always activate or attempt to activate, but there may not be any outcomes.
    • For example,  Barak Kodobane will always try to draw a 1, 2- and 3-Cost spell, but you may not draw anything if you have none.

Swipe left or right to see the cards.
TTN 002t44.png
TOY 652t.png
ETC 536.png
TOY 387.png
WW 399.png
ETC 422.png
WW 394.png
TTN 924.png
DEEP 000.png
UPCOMING 103462.png
ETC 318.png
TOY 391.png
TOY 504.png
CORE LOOT 309.png
WW 001t26.png
TTN 463.png
CORE BAR 551.png
ETC 838.png
TOY 602.png
ETC 376.png
CS3 024.png
TOY 652.png
TOY 830.png
TOY 607.png
TOY 372.png
TOY 378.png

Cost-triggered cards[edit | edit source]

The following cards are triggered by cards of a specific cost.

  • Like cost-specifying cards, these cards only affect other existing cards in the player's hand, deck, or battlefield, and do not generate new cards based on a specific cost.
    • However, unlike cost-specifying cards, these cards may also affect themselves by referencing another card's cost.
  • These cards have cost-specific effects that will not activate before the conditions are met, or if they are not met at all.
    • For example,  Tamsin Roame will not trigger at all, if the spell cast does not cost 1 or more.

Swipe left or right to see the cards.
TOY 341t.png
WW 901.png
ETC 742.png
WW 433.png
ETC 422.png
WW 906.png
TOY 515.png
ETC 388.png
TOY 341.png
WW 387.png

Cost-listing cards[edit | edit source]

The following cards generate their random outcomes by considering all collectible cards that meet a specified cost-based criteria.


Swipe left or right to see the cards.
TTN 429t3.png
WW 818.png
YOG 514.png
UPCOMING 98740.png
CORE REV 923.png
TOY 006.png
DEEP 003.png
ETC 535.png
UPCOMING 98749.png
UPCOMING 101369.png
JAM 003.png
TTN 925.png
UPCOMING 98744.png
TTN 845.png
TOY 822.png
CORE SCH 160.png
UPCOMING 98761.png
UPCOMING 101376.png
TTN 745.png
ETC 339.png
TOY 046.png
WW 433.png
RLK 570t1t1.png
RLK 570t1t2.png
RLK 570tt1.png
RLK 570t1t3.png
RLK 570t1t4.png
CORE KAR 077.png
WW 400.png
TTN 485.png
UPCOMING 108622.png
ETC 832.png
UPCOMING 100178.png
TOY 374.png
DEEP 999t5.png
WW 001t27.png
MIS 314.png
ETC 506t.png
ETC 506.png
WW 814.png
DEEP 031.png
TOY 830.png
TOY 531.png
DEEP 005.png
TOY 506.png
ETC 349.png
TTN 429.png
TTN 700.png
TOY 808.png
CORE KAR 076.png
ETC 370.png
TOY 519.png
ETC 208.png
TOY 372.png
UPCOMING 101876.png

See also[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

 
  1. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RNrXJGFETXw Tested in Patch 4.1.0.10956 (2015-12-04)
  2. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j8VPUi5AqtY Tested in Patch 4.0.0.10833 (LoE patch)
  3. Tested in Patch 4.1.0.10956 (2015-12-04): <culinko> if you play aviana before life tap, your drawn minion will cost 0. if you play aviana after you life tap, the minion will cost 1
  4. Disguised Toast (2017-04-06). [Hearthstone] 8 NEW INTERACTIONS from Journey to Un'Goro (King Mosh, Time Warp, Swamp King Dred)
  5. PlayHearthstone on Twitter (X). (2016-04-08). 
  6. PlayHearthstone on Twitter (X). (2016-04-08). 
  7. PlayHearthstone on Twitter (X). (2016-04-08). 
  8. PlayHearthstone on Twitter (X). (2016-04-08).