Sunburst

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For the theme deck see: Sunburst
Sunburst
Type: Static
Introduced: Fifth Dawn
Last Used: Fifth Dawn
Reminder Text: Sunburst (This enters the battlefield with a (+1/+1 or charge) counter on it for each color of mana spent to cast it.)
Statistics: 16 cards
Artifact 100%
Gatherer search for "Sunburst"

Sunburst is a keyword ability designed by Aaron Forsythe that first appeared in Fifth Dawn.[1]

Description[edit | edit source]

Sunburst appears on both artifacts and artifact creatures that puts charge counters and +1/+1 counters, respectively, on the card when it comes into play. The number of counters is equal to the number of different colors of mana used to play the spell.

In addition, Sunburst can also be used as a sort of 'X-value'. One card, Arcbound Wanderer has the ability "Modular-Sunburst". "Modular-Sunburst" means that the creature comes into play with a +1/+1 counter on it for each color of mana payed to play it, and when that creature is put into a graveyard from play, the controller may move the +1/+1 counters onto another artifact creature.

Fifth Dawn's cards with the Sunburst ability all share a visual cue - Mirrodin's five suns somewhere in the art.[2]

Rules[edit | edit source]

From the Comprehensive Rules (Ixalan (September 29, 2017))

  • 702.43. Sunburst
    • 702.43a Sunburst is a static ability that functions as an object is entering the battlefield from the stack. “Sunburst” means “If this object is entering the battlefield from the stack as a creature, it enters the battlefield with a +1/+1 counter on it for each color of mana spent to cast it. If this object is entering the battlefield from the stack and isn’t entering the battlefield as a creature, it enters the battlefield with a charge counter on it for each color of mana spent to cast it.”
    • 702.43b Sunburst applies only as the spell is resolving and only if one or more colored mana was spent on its costs. Mana paid for additional or alternative costs applies.
    • 702.43c Sunburst can also be used to set a variable number for another ability. If the keyword is used in this way, it doesn’t matter whether the ability is on a creature spell or on a noncreature spell.

      Example: The ability “Modular—Sunburst” means “This permanent enters the battlefield with a +1/+1 counter on it for each color of mana spent to cast it” and “When this permanent is put into a graveyard from the battlefield, you may put a +1/+1 counter on target artifact creature for each +1/+1 counter on this permanent.”

    • 702.43d If an object has multiple instances of sunburst, each one works separately.

From the glossary of the Comprehensive Rules (Ixalan (September 29, 2017))

Sunburst
A keyword ability that can have a permanent enter the battlefield with +1/+1 counters or charge counters on it. See rule 702.43, “Sunburst.”

Rulings[edit | edit source]

  • An artifact creature with sunburst comes into play with one +1/+1 counter on it for each color of mana used to pay its cost.
  • A noncreature artifact with sunburst comes into play with one charge counter on it for each color of mana used to pay its cost.
  • The type of counters depends on whether the spell is a creature or a noncreature spell, not whether the permanent that results from that spell will be a creature or a noncreature permanent. Even if March of the Machines from the Mirrodin set is in play, noncreature artifact spells with sunburst come into play with charge counters.
  • Sunburst doesn't apply if a card is put directly into play from a player's hand. It applies only if it's being played as a spell.
  • If you pay {C}{W}{U}{B}{R}{G} for a six-mana sunburst creature spell, it comes into play with five +1/+1 counters on it—one for each different color of mana you spent.
  • If you pay {C}{C}{U}{B}{B}{R} for a six-mana noncreature artifact spell with sunburst, it comes into play with three charge counters.

Examples[edit | edit source]

  • Clearwater Goblet - {5}
    Artifact
    Sunburst (This enters the battlefield with a charge counter on it for each color of mana spent to cast it.)
    At the beginning of your upkeep, you may gain life equal to the number of charge counters on Clearwater Goblet.
  • Suntouched Myr - {3}
    Artifact Creature — Myr
    0/0
    Sunburst (This enters the battlefield with a +1/+1 counter on it for each color of mana spent to cast it.)

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Mark Rosewater. (May 10, 2004.) “Here Comes the Sunburst”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
  2. Magic Arcana. (June 8, 2004.) “The suns of Sunburst”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.