Activated abilities of artifacts and creatures can't be activated unless they're mana abilities.
Damping Matrixâ€™s ability affects only artifacts and creatures on the battlefield. Activated abilities that work in other zones (such as bloodrush or unearth) can still be activated. Triggered abilities (starting with â€œwhen,â€ â€œwhenever,â€ or â€œatâ€) are unaffected.
Activated abilities contain a colon. Theyâ€™re generally written â€œ[Cost]: [Effect].â€ Some keyword abilities, such as equip, are activated abilities and will have colons in their reminder text.
A mana ability is an ability that produces mana, not an ability that costs mana.
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