The shock lands are a 10-card cycle of dual lands that were introduced in the Ravnica block. They have been reprinted in the Return to Ravnica block and the Guilds of Ravnica block.
Each of these rare nonbasic dual lands has two basic land types and a static replacement ability, from which these cards derive their collective nickname "shock lands", that causes each to enter the battlefield tapped unless its controller pays 2 life. The name "shock land" is a reference to the card Shock, though there are technical and sometimes significant differences between shock lands' life payment and Shock's damage.
Despite having generic names meant to be reprintable on any plane, shock lands were so strongly associated with Ravnica that each return set granted it a reprint, and Ravnica's popularity meant it was one of the first planes to have a second revisit, and so there was never a need to print them on other planes. Acknowledging this, the Secret Lair Drop Series: Dr. Lair's Secretorium Superdrop Culture Shock collection has ten other planes that fit each shock land.
As shock lands, like the original dual lands, have basic land types, they were and are often used in combination with fetch lands, where available. Due to this, they form an integral part of most decks in the Modern format, whereas in Legacy the original duals take their place.
Stomping Ground in particular was much sought-after, since it and a Kird Ape in one's opening hand meant a first-turn 2/3 creature. Loam Lion can also be a first-turn 2/3 creature with Temple Garden. Wild Nacatl can be a first-turn 2/2 creature with Stomping Ground or Temple Garden. It also forms the backbone of the Scapeshift-Valakut, the Molten Pinnacle deck as a green source that counts for Valakut. While other typed dual lands have been printed (and are used), none match the speed of Stomping Ground.
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- Monty Ashley (February 19, 2013). "Shocklands, Then and Now II". magicthegathering.com. Wizards of the Coast.
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