What's the difference between lithomancy and Mirrodin geomancy?

Lore forum

Posted on March 18, 2023, 3:56 p.m. by legendofa

Pre-completion Nahiri, the Lithomancer is described as having special power over stone and metal, often using that to create stone and metal blades.

Koth of the Hammer is a geomancer, manipulating stone and heat as it relates to lava. Thanks to being born on Mirrodin, he's able to use this to purify and heat metal.

It seems like the difference between their respective abilities is mostly semantic. Both of them are shown using rocks, metal, and heat as weapons and armor. About the only differences I see are that Nahiri has manipulated worked stone, while Koth has only used raw stone, and that Koth goes bigger scale with landslides and eruptions while Nahiri mostly focuses on smaller-scale shaping and crafting. This appears to be mostly preference, though, with Nahiri's Lithoforming, Nahiri, Storm of Stone, Smelt, and Darksteel Plate.

Icbrgr says... #2

Idk... maybe it's like earth bending in Avatar the last air bender... some specialized more in the molten liquid rock while others were more into metal.... but both are good with rocks/earth/dirt?

March 18, 2023 5:31 p.m.

TypicalTimmy says... #3

Per the lore, Koth is not a geomancer. He's a transmuter. You loosely see this based on how he adds mana per the number of Mountains and has you tutor for them.

He can turn one metal or ore into any other, but he isn't flying them through the air, lifting mountains or forging weapons. You see this by how she deals direct damage and makes artifacts.

Per lore, Nahiri can superheat metal and rock and form it's shape, but not change it's composition.

Koth can turn lead into gold and granit into sandstone.

Nahiri can take iron and make an iron stone, or collapse a mountain into a Hedron.

March 18, 2023 10:41 p.m. Edited.

legendofa says... #4

TypicalTimmy Could you please provide a source for that?

https://magic.wizards.com/en/story/koth-planeswalker doesn't specifically use the word "geomancer," but it does mention him "burying foes beneath avalanches of stone or incinerating them in rivers of molten lava." That's in line with what Slagstorm shows, which appears to be Koth flying stone through the air, possibly lifting a good chunk of a mountain.

I can't find any source that describes Koth as a transmuter, either using that word or describing him as changing one material into another. I haven't gone through all the short stories or novels, so there might be something there I don't know about, but the summaries don't seem to suggest anything like transmuting. The unofficial site https://mtg.fandom.com/wiki/Koth_of_the_Hammer says that Koth's "specialty is geomancy" with a link to a Doug Beyer article from January 2011 called Mail Bonding, but that article's been removed from the WotC site.

https://magic.wizards.com/en/story/nahiri-planeswalker is less descriptive of her abilities, but your summary matches what I've found. I just don't see Koth being described as you say anywhere, either directly or by inference. He's able to harden or soften, change the shape of, and "purify" or un-corrupt metal and stone, but not change what it's made out of, as far I can tell.

March 19, 2023 2:54 a.m.

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