Converted Mana Cost

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A few questions:

Am I right that if a card has X in its cost, it's converted mana cost takes into account whatever X is while it is on the stack, but in all other zones it counts X as zero?

If an effect allows you to pay less mana for a spell, how does that affect its converted mana cost while it's on the stack?  For example, if it normally costs 5 but something allows me to play it for 4, is its CMC 4 or 5 while it's on the stack? 
Am I right that if a card has X in its cost, it's converted mana cost takes into account whatever X is while it is on the stack, but in all other zones it counts X as zero?

Yes.



If an effect allows you to pay less mana for a spell, how does that affect its converted mana cost while it's on the stack?  For example, if it normally costs 5 but something allows me to play it for 4, is its CMC 4 or 5 while it's on the stack?

Five.

If I steal a hundred dollar from a loot of one thousand, people might notice;

If I steal a hundred dollar from a loot of one million, I might get away with it;

If I wish to steal even more and still go unnoticed, I need to make the loot bigger.

 

Now you know why taxes always go up.

 

Looting: ''the plundering of public assets by corrupt or greedy authorities'' (Wikipedia)

It's been a while since I played, but unless I'm mistaken you pay the mana cost before it gets put on the stack...

IMAGE(http://www.nodiatis.com/pub/11.jpg)

We're talking about CONVERTED mana cost.

If I steal a hundred dollar from a loot of one thousand, people might notice;

If I steal a hundred dollar from a loot of one million, I might get away with it;

If I wish to steal even more and still go unnoticed, I need to make the loot bigger.

 

Now you know why taxes always go up.

 

Looting: ''the plundering of public assets by corrupt or greedy authorities'' (Wikipedia)

202.3. The converted mana cost of an object is a number equal to the total amount of mana in its mana cost, regardless of color.

202.3b When calculating the converted mana cost of an object with an {X} in its mana cost, X is treated as 0 while the object is not on the stack, and X is treated as the number chosen for it while the object is on the stack.

If I steal a hundred dollar from a loot of one thousand, people might notice;

If I steal a hundred dollar from a loot of one million, I might get away with it;

If I wish to steal even more and still go unnoticed, I need to make the loot bigger.

 

Now you know why taxes always go up.

 

Looting: ''the plundering of public assets by corrupt or greedy authorities'' (Wikipedia)

We're talking about CONVERTED mana cost.



Exactly... The converted mana cost of X before it goes on the stack would be 0, so lowering the mana cost wouldn't have any effect...

IMAGE(http://www.nodiatis.com/pub/11.jpg)

It's been a while since I played, but unless I'm mistaken you pay the mana cost before it gets put on the stack...


Nope. The very first thing you do to a spell (let's use Blaze) is to put it on the stack. Then you choose a value for X, and define its target. Then you calculate the total cost (using the chosen value of X), use mana abilities if needed to get the mana, then finally pay the cost.


The spell is now considered cast, and will resolve later unless it's countered. Anything that cares about converted mana cost will only apply after this, with the X already defined.




A spell's CMC is directly taken for the set of symbols on its mana cost. It doesn't matter if the cost is being reduced, if you're paying some additional cost, or if the normal cost is being replaced by something else (like flashback or miracle). You take the card's actual mana symbols, and get a single number from them; that's the CMC.


A Blaze with X=4 has CMC of 5 (4+R). Even if you're paying just three mana because of two ruby medallions, the CMC is still 5. A Bonfire of the Damned with X=4 has CMC of 9 (4+4+R), even when played with Miracle (costing just five mana, CMC still 9). A Shock has CMC of R, even when Trinisphere ups its cost to 2R. And so on.

[<o>]
so lowering the mana cost wouldn't have any effect...

Nothing can lower the mana cost. The mana cost is what's written on the card. It's the total cost that's lowered.
how does that affect its converted mana cost while it's on the stack?

it doesn't
CMC is based on the mana cost characteristic of an object, it can change (eg. copy effects), but cost reducers have no impact on it

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