Nova Goes Super and the LCQ Finalists

Posted in Feature on March 19, 2005

By John Carter

Send your rules questions to Magic Rules Manager John Carter. Can't find the answer to your question somewhere else, like the Magic Comprehensive Rules? Maybe he's already answered it! Try the Saturday School Searchable Rules Database.

Pro Tour Atlanta was a blast. The whole shebang was won by Nova, and the finalists were a team that qualified the night before the tournament at the Last Chance Qualifier. That's $60,000 and payback for a few PT bridesmaids, and $30,000 for a bunch of guys that just wanted to have fun getting together for a weekend of Magic.

Here's a sampling of what was on the pros' minds for PT Atlanta:

Q: If someone plays a Devouring Greed and sacrifices two Spirits, would Uyo make a copy that does two or does the full six?

A: Uyo copies the spell as is—the copy will do the full six, and if there were splices on the spell, Uyo would include those as well. What a deal.

Q: If I play Devouring Greed and sacrifice Sire of the Storm, do I get to draw a card?

A: No, you don't. A spell is announced right away, but it's not considered “played” until all costs are paid. Sire of the Storm triggers once the spell is played—which is impossible if it was just sacrificed to pay a cost.
*Regular Saturday School readers might recall a similar question asked about Devouring Rage.

Q: If my opponent plays Reweave on my Cage of Hands, and I reveal cards until I hit a Genju of the Fields, who decides where the Genju goes?

A: You do. While the opponent is playing the spell, you are the person who is putting the local enchantment into play. [CR 212.4e]

*Extra* If there aren’t any Plains in play as the Reweave resolves, the Genju stays in the library and then the library gets shuffled. [CR 212.4e]

Back to Regular Reader Questions

Baku Altar
Q: I have Baku Altar in play with 3 ki counters. Can I put 3 colorless Spirit creature tokens into play if I remove all the ki counters on my Baku Altar? --Muhammad F.

A: No, the activation includes removing “a ki counter”, not “X ki counters”. Compare this to the Baku themselves which do allow removing multiple counters.

Q: I have an Ogre Marauder in play and my opponent has an Ember-Fist Zubera. If I attack, can my opponent sacrifice the Zubera without blocking the Marauder, in order to deal to him 1 point of damage? –Fabrizio

A: Yes. Ogre Marauder's wording was a bit confusing, so an erratum was issued to clarify it. The current wording is: “Whenever Ogre Marauder attacks, it gains "Ogre Marauder can't be blocked" until end of turn unless defending player sacrifices a creature.” Thus, the Ogre's triggered ability clearly happens and resolves before blockers are ever declared. The Zubera's trigger will resolve before blockers are declared, and the one point of damage should finish off the Ogre.

*Extra* If you attack with two Marauders, your opponent could sacrifice an Ember-Fist Zubera to stop the first one from becoming unblockable and use the Zubera damage to kill the second one. Ouch.

Q: I have three Dripping-Tongue Zubera in play along with a Lifespinner. I use Lifespinner's ability sacrificing the three Zubera. If I bring Shirei, Shizo's Caretaker into play will I get my three Zubera back? If I use Lifespinner's ability to sac three 1/1 Spirit tokens, will I get those tokens back? –Elminster

A: Shirei won't return the three Zubera because it wasn't in play to see them die.
If you sacrifice tokens with Shirei in play, you won't get the tokens back because tokens not in play cease to exist as a state-based effect (when a player gets priority or as the last part of the Cleanup step).

Q: You search for a legendary spirit in your library, and then put him into play… What if the legend is in your hand? --Caleb J.

A: Nope, your hand is a different zone than your library. You won't be able to search for and find something that anywhere except your library.

*Extra* Compare this to something like Eradicate which specifically instructs a player to search multiple zones.

Hokori, Dust Drinker
Q: My friend has Hokori in play and he just used his Cloudcrest Lake for white mana, will he be able to untap the Cloudcrest Lake in his next turn? --Joe

A: Yes, Hokori makes lands not untap during the untap (when the Lake wouldn't be able to if tapped for ), but it also lets each player untap a land he or she controls at the beginning of their upkeep. This is any land—sleepy Lake or not.

Q: I have a Plains enchanted with Genju of the Fields and a flipped Kitsune Mystic. Can I activate the Genju and then the Mystic to move the Genju onto a creature? If so, then can I pay two to turn said creature into a 2/5? –Adam

A: Yes, but it'll have to be another animated (because Autumn-Tail, Kitsune Sage talks about creatures) Plains (because of Genju of the Fields is an Enchant Plains).

*Extra* So you've got Genju of the Fields and Genju of the Realm on different lands. If you activate both, Autumn-Tail could attach the Genju of the Realms to the animated Plains (and vice versa if the GotR had animated a Plains). Once Autumn-Tail attaches the GotR to the Plains, you could use GotR to turn the 2/5 Spirit Linked Plains into an 8/12 Spirit Linked Trampler. Activating the GotF again would mean the Plains is Spirit Linked twice, but in this case you go from 8/12 to 2/5. The last activation to resolve is going to decide the power and toughness.

Q: If I were to enchant a Darksteel Citadel with Genju of the Realm, would my 8/12 trampler be indestructible? --Matt C.

A: Yes.

Q: I was wondering about the interaction with Kiki-Jiki and (face down) morph creatures. --Matt M.

A: You'll get a colorless 2/2 creature token of unspecified creature type with converted mana cost . You will not be able to turn the token face up because there is no face up for a copy of a face down creature. Kiki-Jiki is quick, but he's not psychic.

Dosan the Falling Leaf
Q: How do Dosan the Falling Leaf and Isochron Scepter interact? --Nick

A: Unlike Meddling Mage, Dosan can shut down a Scepter. The key is that Dosan stops all spells—cards and copies of cards; it doesn't matter so long as it's not the Scepter player's turn. Meddling Mage only stops cards. Yes, you could activate the Scepter on your opponent's turn, but Dosan won't let you play the copy the Scepter makes.

*Extra* Orim's Chant and Abeyance can also stop the Scepter spell from being played. Just respond to the Scepter activation and the Chant or Abeyance will stop that player from being able to play any spells or instants and sorceries respectively.

Q: I control Horobi, Death's Wail and Rhystic Deluge. I pay one blue and target my opponent's creature, but then my opponent pays one mana and stops the Deluge's effect. Would Horobi's ability still destroy the creature even though my opponent stopped the tapping effect of the Deluge? –Nick

A: Yes, Horobi doesn't care if the targeting does anything—it's already triggered by the time your opponent can pay to stop it. The creature won't get tapped, but it will get dead.

Q: I have a Horobi, Death's Wail in play, and play Eradicate on one of my opponent's creatures… --Kyle O

A: Horobi will finish off the targeted creature long before the Eradicate resolves, and the Eradicate will be countered for lack of target.

Q: I built a deck that centers on Ensnaring Bridge and Maddening Imp. Does it work? –Tom

A: Yes, it works fine. The key is that the Imp forces the creatures to attack, the Bridge stops them from attacking, but the Imp doesn't care if they were actually able to attack just whether or not they did attack. The non-Wall creatures that didn't attack will be destroyed at end of turn.

Q: If my opponent uses Nevinyrral's Disk and I counter the activated ability with a Stifle, will the Disk get destroyed? –Beto

A: No, the disk isn't sacrificed as part of the cost (unlike Oblivion Stone). The Disk is normally destroyed as part of the effect, but countering the ability means that effect never happened.

Chalice of the Void
Q: I have a Chalice of the Void in play with two counters. Opponent plays an Engineered Explosives with a black and a blue mana. Does it get countered? –George

A: Yes, it does— + converts to 2.

*Extra* If your opponent is trying to get rid of the Chalice remember that the Chalice's converted mana cost in play is 0 regardless of the number of counters on it.

*Extra* What the player could do to get an Explosives with two counters on it into play is overpay with colorless or more of the same colored mana. Sunburst counters colors paid, but the converted cost of the Explosives on the stack is still whatever the X value was. So if you spend or the converted cost is 3, but the number of different colors (and thus the number of counters) is only two. You could spend and still only get two counters for Sunburst.

Q: If I sacrifice my Darksteel Colossus to Tinker, will the Colossus be shuffled into my library so I can search for it? --Hans G.

A: The Colossus was sacrificed as an additional cost, so it'll be shuffled back in before the Tinker resolves. You could find the Colossus while doing the Tinker search.

Q: An Eater of The Dead is enchanted with a pinging ability a-la Psionic Gift. Can the Eater ping an opponent indefinitely (or 1000 times) if there are no creatures in a graveyard? --Phil D.

A: No, the Eater's ability targets creature cards, so once you run out of targets the ability can't be used. The current wording of Eater of the Dead is “: If Eater of the Dead is tapped, untap it and remove target creature card in a graveyard from the game.” Even if you activate the ability 1000 times targeting the same creature, the last 999 will be countered because the target will be gone.

Q: Let's say that I have two Chains of Mephistopheles out. I play a Standstill. Once Standstill resolves, can I play a spell before my opponent does (thereby wrecking his or her hand)? –Mike

A: You would have priority first after the Standstill resolves (since enchantments can only be played on your turn, you'd be the active player). However, your opponent could respond to your spell (and the Standstill trigger) by playing a spell as well to trigger the Standstill.
And no, once you start resolving the three draws and the applicable Chains replacements you won't have an opportunity to play any spells or abilities until the whole draws + Chains mess is resolved.

*Extra* If you have an instant, you could wait until the opponent's draw step. This way, if your opponent responds with a spell of his or her own, you'll at least get the first card for free (since it's a draw step and you wouldn't have drawn yet) before the Chains start to work you over.

Q: I have a Cold Storage, Gliding Licid and a Rootwater Matriarch. I use Gliding Licid to enchant an opponent's creature and the matriarch to control it. I put the creature into Cold Storage and take the Gliding Licid off and turn it back into a creature. Can I do this? --Ben M.

A: No, you'll either lose the Licid to state-based effects after you put the stolen creature into Storage, or you'll lose the creature once you take off the Licid. Either way, you're not going to have a healthy Licid and a frozen creature.

Q: Will Humble let a wall attack? --Zero

A: Yes, Humble removes all abilities—including defender.

Conspiracy
Q: With Conspiracy, can you choose a creature type like Fungus Goblin, or can you only choose a creature type like Goblin? --John D.

A: “Fungus Goblin” is two creature types. You'll have to decide which you prefer—Fungus or Goblins.

Q: Is there a defined list of creature types? I was thinking I could play Riptide Replicator and name the type 'shrine' to power my Honden deck. --Danks C.

A: Yes, there is, and no, you can't. The list is in the Glossary of the Comprehensive Rules under “Creature Type”. “Shrine” is an enchantment type (much like “equipment” is an artifact type and “arcane” is an instant and sorcery type), not a creature type.

Q: If I have Brown Ouphe, can I use his tap ability to counter the Eater Of Days "skip two turns" effect? --Paul W.

A: No, Brown Ouphe only countered activated abilities, not triggered ones. The card you're looking for is Stifle.

Q: I have a Jareth, Leonine Titan with Serra's Embrace on it. Can I block a flying white creature and then use the protection ability to give it protection from white? --Robert K.

A: You can. The Titan will get +7/+7 because it blocked, so you'll have a 13/16 vigilant flyer. Once you give it Pro: white, the Embrace will fall off as a state-based effect, so he'll lose flying and vigilance and drop to 11/14. The blocked flyer will still be blocked and they'll both clobber each other (but Jareth's Pro: white will prevent the damage from the white source).

Tangle Asp
Q: I block an animated Forbidding Watchtower with my Tangle Asp. At the end of combat, my buddy said that because Forbidding Watchtower is a creature that is still a land, it would not be destroyed by the Tangle Asp's ability. Any help? Furthermore, could you target it with a destroy target creature while it is in its animated form? –John

A: Being both a creature and a land (like the animated Watchtower) means the land critter is susceptible to both land and creature destruction. Tangle Asp's ability will destroy it, so will Terror, and so will Rain of Rust.

Q: With Stalking Assassin, if the mana cost is paid for both abilities. Can you tap and destroy a target creature in play during the same turn? –Michael

A: The Assassin has more than mana in its cost—you have to find some way to untap it in between the tap ability and the destroy tapped ability.

Q: I play Biorhythm and my opponent has no creatures in play, but I only have one creature under my control. My opponent plays a Lightning Bolt, and destroys my creature. What happens? --Christian H.

A: As Biorhythm resolves it counts the creatures each player controls and then sets your life totals. In this case, you both are set to 0, and the game is a draw.

That's it for this week. Next up on the Pro Tour schedule is the experimental “skins” payout at PT Philadelphia. Every match there will award money to the winner, but once you've failed to win three times, you're out. That ups the stakes for every round, but it also puts a lot of money into a lot of players' pockets. You know I'll be there (being a Philly resident of many years). In the meantime, you know where I'll be every Saturday.

One last note, don't forget that March 20th is the effective date for the DCI's most recent updates. That means that starting Sunday Trinisphere is restricted in Vintage and Arcbound Ravager, Disciple of the Vault, and the six artifact lands are banned in Standard. Best of luck in your events, and have fun!

Class dismissed.

--Carter

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