Fat Pack Puzzle

Posted in Feature on March 1, 2002

By Mark Rosewater, Puzzle Guru

Here is the puzzle "Crossing the Threshold" from the Torment Fat Pack. You can read through the text version of the puzzle here, or you can download the PDF by clicking the picture below. At the end of this article is the answer… but give it a try on your own first! No cheating!

Crossing the Threshold

Your opponent is Worth. You and he are playing a game using Odyssey and Torment cards. You were doing well until Worth enchanted your Childhood Horror with Kirtar's Desire. Last turn, Worth got you down to 4 life with Stern Judge, played Wayward Angel, and enchanted the Angel with Druid's Call. Things look bleak, but on your turn you draw a card and realize you can win. It is the start of your main phase. Defeat Worth this turn without losing yourself.

You are playing a black deck, have 4 life remaining, 2 cards in hand, and 3 cards in the graveyard.


Right-click on this picture to "Save Target As" and download the PDF of the original puzzle. Mac users click and hold to download.

You have in play:
Childhood Horror, 2/2, enchanted with Worth's Kirtar's Desire
Repentant Vampire, 3/3
Shambling Swarm, 3/3
Slithery Stalker, 1/1, enchanted with your Shade's Form
6 untapped Swamps

Your hand:
Chainer's Edict
Patriarch's Desire

Your graveyard:
Gravegouger
Innocent Blood
Ghastly Demise

Worth is playing a white/green deck, has 4 life remaining, 0 cards in hand, and 6 cards in the graveyard.

Worth has in play:
Wayward Angel, 4/4, enchanted with Worth's Druid's Call
Mystic Familiar, 1/2
Angel of Retribution, 5/5
Anurid Scavenger, 3/3
Stern Judge, 2/2, tapped
4 tapped Forests
4 tapped Plains

Worth's removed from game zone:
Aven Cloudchaser, removed by your Slithery Stalker

Worth's graveyard:
Life Burst
Wild Mongrel
Leaf Dancer
Forest
Pay No Heed
Springing Tiger

The Torment Fat Pack contains the Chainer's Torment novel, a Player's Guide that features this puzzle and full-color pictures of every card in the set, six booster packs, and a Spindown life counter. Available in stores now.

The Answer

  1. Tap six swamps to add to your mana pool.
  2. Use two mana to play Chainer's Edict, targeting yourself. Sacrifice your Shambling Swarm. The Edict and Swarm both go to your graveyard. Your graveyard has five cards in it.
  3. When Shambling Swarm is put into your graveyard, its ability triggers. Put one -1/-1 counter on your Slithery Stalker and two -1/-1 counters on Worth's Mystic Familiar.
  4. Your Slithery Stalker is destroyed. The Stalker and the Shade's Form enchanting it both go to your graveyard. You have seven cards in your graveyard and reach threshold. Your Repentant Vampire becomes white, and your Childhood Horror becomes a 4/4 creature. Worth's Mystic Familiar is destroyed and goes to his graveyard. Worth has seven cards in his graveyard and reaches threshold. His Wayward Angel becomes a 7/7 black creature.
  5. The second ability of Shade's Form and the leaves-play ability of Slithery Stalker both trigger and go on the stack. (It doesn't matter which order you put them on the stack; let's say you put the Stalker's ability on the stack last.) Tap your white Repentant Vampire to destroy Worth's black Wayward Angel. Wayward Angel and Druid's Call are both put in Worth's graveyard.
  6. Slithery Stalker's leaves-play ability resolves, returning Aven Cloudchaser to play on Worth's side. The Cloudchaser's comes-into-play ability triggers, and Worth must destroy Kirtar's Destire since it's the only enchantment in play.
  7. The ability of Shade's Form resolves, returning Slithery Stalker to play on your side. You have six cards in your graveyard and no longer have threshold. Your Childhood Horror is 2/2 again. The Stalker's comes-into-play ability triggers. Remove Worth's Angel of Retribution from the game.
  8. Use four black mana to play Patriarch's Desire, targeting Aven Cloudchaser. It gets +2/-2 and is destroyed. Patriarch's Desire goes to your graveyard. You have seven cards in your graveyard and reach threshold again. Your Childhood Horror goes back up to 4/4.
  9. Attack with Childhood Horror. Worth has no creatures with flying left, so he can't block. He takes 4 damage, and you win the game!

Comments? Email editor@wizards.com.

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