Hexproof vs Shroud in MTG – What’s the Difference?

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Shroud and Hexproof are both crucial MTG mechanics when it comes to countering or otherwise protecting yourself from the spells or abilities the opponent controls. What hexproof means is rather straightforward, but what shroud means is a bit less transparent.

Hexproof vs Shroud in MTG – What’s the Difference_

Read on below, discover the difference between the shroud and hexproof abilities!

Hexproof vs Shroud

Both Hexproof and Shroud are considered as a powerful and versatile static ability. Incidentally, they both prevent your card from any possible targeted ability an opponent tries to throw your way.

But, what exactly is it then that differs between these two diverse and powerful MTG mechanics, you may ask?

One of these abilities grants its controller full protection from any spells or abilities in the game, while the other will only affect a spell or ability employed by the enemy.

Continue on, as we further break down the answer in the following sections.

What is Hexproof?

Cards with the keyword ability “Hexproof” in their type line or description are protected fully from the spells and abilities controlled by opponents.

In other words, your Hexproof card, be it land, creature, enchantment, or otherwise, can’t be the target of any spell or ability(other than ones that you control).

If another player launches a lightning bolt at your creature, the spell goes to the graveyard and your creature remains untouched. Further, if you cast a booster spell onto your own creature, Hexproof won’t interfere.

What Does a Card With Hexproof Look Like?

Swiftfoot Boots
Magic The Gathering - Swiftfoot Boots (263/356) - Commander 2013

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The colorless Artifact Equipment Swiftfoot Boots is a great example of a standard but classic Hexproof card. The card costs two mana to cast, and one mana to enact the triggered ability “Hexproof and Haste.”

In other words, once you play this one, and pay to attach it to a creature, said creature will instantly gain protection from the abilities, spells, and otherwise attempts at dealt damage from opponents.

What is Shroud?

Cards with the keyword ability “Shroud” printed on their description or type line are protected from spells and abilities, period.

That means your Shroud card isn’t able to be the target of a spell or ability of anyone’s, not even your the ones you control.

So, while your creatures enjoy full protection from all spells and abilities opponents conjure up and target them with, they are also blocked from receiving boosts or the effects of other cards you try casting.

What Does a Card With Shroud Look Like?

Whispersilk Cloak

Magic: the Gathering - Whispersilk Cloak - Magic 2011

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The Whispersilk Cloak is another card that is both classic and standard as far as the Shroud ability goes. As with Swiftfoot Boots, the Hexproof example above, Whispersilk Cloak is also must be equipped to a creature for an additional price.

This Shroud bearing card costs three mana to bring onto the field and includes both Shroud and Unblockable mechanics for the creatures that wear it. You must pay two colorless mana before attaching it to creatures.

A Final Word About Hexproof vs Shroud MTG

Hexproof and shroud are two extremely useful mechanics. As far as protection goes, there aren’t many MTG cards types that are more effective. Both may protect your creatures and permanents, and help avoid taking losses from any spells, mechanics, or trigger-type ability.