Saviors on Sale

Posted in Feature on June 4, 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.

Saviors of Kamigawa went on sale in stores on Friday, June 3rd. And being the first weekend of release, many local stores are having Release Events. If you didn't make it to the prerelease, here's your chance to get in on some of the fun. Even if you got a chance to snag a free poster at the Saviors prerelease, now you can start building decks with all those cards you've been squinting over on the poster. For us, it's on to the questions!

Descendant of Masumaro
Q: If no opponent can be targeted (due to Ivory Mask, for example), does Descendant of Masumaro get any counters? I would say no since its ability won’t even reach the stack. --Bruno D.

A: You're correct. Without a legal target, Descendant of Masumaro's ability won't go on the stack. If an opponent is targeted and becomes an illegal target (Gilded Light, perhaps), the ability will be countered. In either case, you do nothing with the Descendant-- don't add or remove counters.

Q: Can Arashi, the Sky Asunder's channel be countered? --Tadayoshi L.

A: Yes, the channel ability word does indicate a type of ability that is activated. Thus, effects that counter activated abilities (such as Stifle or Squelch) can counter Arashi's channel.

Q: If Twincast is played in response to my opponent playing Tooth and Nail, can I pay the extra cost for entwine? --Daniel R.

A: Twincast copies the entire spell including entwine (if the player paid for the entwine) [CR 503.10]. If the original spell wasn't entwined, you only get the part that the original player announced (search for two critter cards or put two into play in the case of Tooth and Nail), and you won't get the option of paying extra to entwine the copy.

Q: If I play Neverending Torment (or any epic spell) then Twincast it, do both spells resolve? Do I remove twice as many cards per upkeep? --Benny

A: Both the copy and the original epic will resolve as normal. At the beginning of each of your upkeeps you'll get to redo the spell's effect for each of those epics. The thing to remember is that resolving an epic won't allow you to play spells, but any spells you've already played will resolve as normal.

Q: Does the epic ability stop the copying ability of Uyo, Silent Prophet? --Iainwb

A: No, Uyo can make copies of epics with no trouble. If you copy the original, you'll get an extra epic every upkeep. If you copy the copy an epic creates at the beginning of an upkeep, you'll get just that one copy.

Q: If I have an unflipped Erayo, Soratami Ascendant in play and the forth spell in a turn is a Shock targeting it, what will happen? Also, here in Germany, there are two different cards called 'Leuchtnder Engel' (Luminous Angel and Angelic Protector). How does this interact with things like Cranial Extraction or Eradicate? --Ark

A: Erayo will trigger from the fourth spell being played and flip into a legendary enchantment. The Shock will be countered because the permanent it was aimed at is no longer a "target creature."

I believe the name you're thinking of is "Leuchtender Engel." In any case, the uniqueness of a card is defined by its English name, so a translation misnomer is easily covered already. For localized play in Germany (where you may not be using English at all), you can say the name and then add a detail to verify which one you mean such as "Der Leuchtender Engel, der Babys macht."

Q: I have a Lantern Kami with Kodama's Might that is a 3/3. Then I equip O-Naginata. The equipment stays on the Lantern Kami when the Kodama's Might effect ends because Lantern Kami is still 4/1, right? --Oliver

A: Yes, the O-Naginata does take into account its own bonus when determining if it stays equipped to a creature. You'd have to give the Lantern Kami at least -2/-0, making its power less than 3, to make the O-Naginata unattach as a state-based effect.

Kaho, Minamo Historian
Q: If an opponent bounces my Kaho, Minamo Historian, and I replay that card, will Kaho remember all the spells it removed from the game previously? --Kevin K.

A: No, the new Kaho will not remember or be able to retrieve the cards it removed from the game in its former life.

*Extra*: One way to get more mileage out of Kaho is to use his ability to put a bounce spell of your own (such as Consuming Vortex) out of your deck. Once the other two spells have been used you can play the Vortex on Kaho and start over.

*Extra*: Kaho is playing the spells, so yes, you can splice cards in your hand onto the spell if it's Arcane. You can't splice cards from Kaho onto spells though.

Q: If I copy an Isao, Enlightened Bushi with Sakashima the Impostor, does Sakashima gain the "Can't be countered" ability? --Leland

A: Yes, but it won't matter. The reason is because you don't pick who Sakashima is impersonating until it's on the verge of entering play-- the chance to counter Sakashima has come and gone by the time it could get the "can't be countered" ability.

Q: Do you have to reproduce an epic spell's ability during your upkeep? For instance, if I have a Genju of the Realm in play and one in my deck after playing Enduring Ideal, will I have to eventually put the Genju in my deck into play because of the Ideal? What if there are no more enchantments in my deck to search for? --John S.

A: Yes, you generally must put a copy of an epic on the stack at the beginning of each of your upkeeps. The targeted epics might not have a legal target, so those could avoid the stack if no target exists at all. Enduring Ideal isn't targeted, so it always will go on the stack.

Don't worry about your Genju of the Realm just yet though. Enduring Ideal's effect searches for an enchantment, and effects that search for a card with a given quality (such as enchantment-ness) are not required to actually find a card of that quality. Thus, if you have no enchantments, or if you have only legendary enchantments that you don't want to put into play, you have the option to fail to find anything and shuffle.

Meishin, the Mind Cage
Q: If I have Meishin, the Mind Cage in play with four cards in hand, and I play Strange Inversion on Konda, Lord of Eiganjo, will I kill him? --Nafthali

A: State-based effects will put Konda directly into the graveyard. The way it works is the Mind Cage gives everyone -4/-0. You play Strange Inversion targeting Konda, and the Mind Cage adjusts to -3/-0. Thus, Konda is 0/3. Strange Inversion resolves and swaps Konda's power for his toughness making him a 3/0 (the Mind Cage effect is timestamped, i.e. started, earlier, so it applies first, then the Inversion applies). Strange Inversion goes to the graveyard, and then state-based effects are checked. At that time Konda has zero toughness, so he is put into the graveyard. Neither indestructibility nor regeneration will save him from zero or less toughness.

Q: I have Cosmic Larva equipped with Bonesplitter. I play Overblaze on it and attack. My opponent blocks with Pristine Angel and Yosei, the Morning Star. Is there any way that trample damage can be assigned to the opponent? --Jolen

A: No, the Overblaze effect isn't going to apply until the Larva's combat damage resolves, and the Larva's power must be assigned to creatures before it can be assigned to the defending player. Once damage resolves, the Pristine Angel will have the damaged prevented, and the Yosei will take double whatever it was assigned.

Q: If I discard Squee, Goblin Nabob to Razormane Masticore, can I return Squee to my hand? Subsequently, can I return Squee first then discard him? --Aaron S.

A: Squee has to be in your graveyard as your upkeep starts to trigger his return ability. Thus, you can't discard Squee to a Masticore (Razormane or the original) and return it that turn. However, if Squee is already in your graveyard as the upkeep starts, you can stack the Squee trigger on top of the Masticore trigger, return Squee, and then toss him to the Masticore. Chomp.

Q: If I play Panoptic Mirror, imprint Time Stop, and Donate the Mirror to my opponent, would that effectively end all my opponent's turns? --Liam

A: No, the "may" in Panoptic Mirror's ability will let your opponent choose not to copy or play the Time Stop.

Q: Can I use Coffin Purge in some way to prevent my opponent from fetching an enchantment with Academy Rector? --M-a

A: Yes. Respond to the Rector's trigger with Coffin Purge. When Academy Rector is put into a graveyard from play, its ability triggers. Once the ability resolves the person who controls the trigger will have the option of removing the Rector from the game. If that person does remove the Rector, then he or she can search for an enchantment to put into play. If the Rector isn't in the graveyard when the trigger resolves, then the Rector can't be removed, and no enchantment can be fetched.

Q: Can I use a card such as Bad River to fetch a dual land such as Underground Sea? --Matthew P.

A: Yes, fetching a Swamp, for example, looks for a land with the land type Swamp. It doesn't matter if the land's name is Swamp or not. The same is true for all of the Mirage and Onslaught fetch lands.

*Extra*: The key is the difference between a "basic land" and a "basic land type." The basic lands (Forest, Island, Mountain, Plains, Swamp) all have the basic land type that matches their name. The "dual lands" have basic land types in their type line (in Oracle), but don't have the "basic" supertype, so they're not basic lands even though their types are basic. If an effect asks for a "basic land", you only get the five basic lands. If a card asks for a "basic land type", then it doesn't matter if the land is basic, just that if have a type that is basic.

Sliver Overlord
Q: I have a Sliver Overlord and an Imagecrafter in play, and my opponent has an Arcbound Overseer. He played Soulscour. I responded by making the Overseer into a Sliver and taking control of it. I contend that the supertype is "Artifact Creature - Sliver" and not simply "Sliver" as he contends. Do I get to keep the stolen Overseer or does it get destroyed? --Albert A.

A: You'll keep the Arcbound Overseer. Soulscour wouldn't destroy it no matter who controlled it.

*Extra*: The "type line" is the line on a card between the art box and the rules text box. On the far right is the seat's expansion symbol (except for early core sets and a few misprints). The left side of the line is where the type information is.

A card's type is made up of three things: Supertype | Type | Subtype. Most cards don't have a supertype, but if there is one, it appears before the type(s) and doesn't have any separation. The types are artifact, creature, enchantment, instant, land, and sorcery-- anything before these words is a supertype such as "basic" before land or "legendary" before several of the types. Subtypes are separated by a long dash such as "Creature — Golem." Subtypes are often called foo types where foo is the type that the subtype is associated with, such as creature type or land type.

Making something into a given subtype doesn't affect any of the types and doesn't change subtypes that belong to other types. For example, making an Arcbound Overseer into a Sliver changes the type line from "Artifact Creature — Golem" to "Artifact Creature — Sliver." The type "artifact" is unaffected by the change in creature (sub)type.

Q: I attack with my Plated Slagwurm and my opponent blocks with a Tangle Asp. The Wurm has untargetability, so it doesn't get destroyed by the Asp's ability, right? --Jambodan

A: Not being targetable by spells or abilities only matters if the spell or ability has "target" in its text. Tangle Asp, No Mercy, and Wrath of God can all destroy a Plated Slagwurm without difficulty.

Q: It is said that a Licid targeted by a Flametongue Kavu would still die if it were turned into an enchantment and then back again before the Kavu's ability resolves. Is the same true for blocking with a Licid, turning it into an enchantment, and then turning it back into a creature before the combat damage step? --John-Paul H.

A: A Licid that blocks, becomes an enchantment before damage is assigned, and then becomes a creature again will not take combat damage. The reason is because the Licid was removed from combat when it stopped being a creature [CR 306.2]. Be careful though-- if combat damage was on the stack (much like the Flametongue's ability) when the Licid went from critter to enchantment and back, the damage would resolve as assigned. (Leaving combat doesn't save you if the damage is already stacked.)

Q: If I play Manabond while I have Crucible of Worlds in play, do I get to return all the lands in my graveyard to play at the end of turn? --Raymon

A: No, Manabond only looks at your hand when it decides what goes into play. The Crucible's "as though they were in your hand" wording is unnecessary with the modern concept of playing things (flashback and Isochron Scepter show that players can understand playing cards from strange places without needing the extra words) and doesn't interact with the Manabond effect.

Some Tournament and Format Related Questions

Q: Can you tell me what a sideboard is and how you play with them? --Steve

A: A sideboard is a collection of cards that you can add to your deck after the first game. Presumably, you'll be adding cards to make your deck better against that specific opponent when your main deck would be more geared towards playing a wide range of possible opponents. Sideboards work slightly differently in constructed events than in limited.

In limited (draft, sealed deck), everything you opened or drafted that isn't in your main deck is your sideboard (plus any number of basic lands). You may sideboard as much or as little in limited as you want in between games so long as the deck remains at or above 40 cards.

In constructed (standard, vintage, etc.), your sideboard is either 0 (no sideboard) or 15 cards exactly. In between games you may swap cards one-for-one with the deck and sideboard. Your sideboard should always be 15 cards in constructed regardless of how big your deck is (though the minimum of 60 is strongly recommended).

Q: Is it legal to play World Championship cards in casual play? --Trevor H.

A: In casual play, you can play whatever your group allows. In sanctioned play you won't be allowed to use cards that don't have the regular Magic back or ones that have silver borders. What you and your friends play with casually is totally up to you-- all we want is for you to have fun.

Q: Two-Headed Giant has become a bit confusing due to the possibility of a Dampen Thoughts deck. What happens when one member of a team cannot draw any more cards? --Scott R.

A: Our rules gurus are testing the official multiplayer rules right now, and I look forward to their release in the near future. For multi-headed giant, if only one "head" loses (Dampen Thought, Door to Nothingness, etc.), that head goes brain-dead-- that player leaves the game, and the remaining head tries to slug it out alone. Of course, if it's damage that's killing you, with a shared life total, you're both dead, so the game would end… unless you have a Platinum Angel or some such in play-- in which case we're back to a one-head-plus-brain-dead giant.

*Extra*: In case you didn't see Saturday School hints before, we're launching "simultaneous" two-headed giant. The quick explanation is this:
1) You and your other head take your team's turn at the same time.
2) You and your head pass priority back and forth until you both pass, and then the other giant (team) does the same-- all players must pass without doing anything before a spell or ability resolves or the current step/phase ends (for steps/phases with priority).
3) Stuff that affects "you" still only affects you, not you and your other head.
4) You don't share resources (mana, cards in hand), but you can talk and offer advice.
5) You do share attacking and blocking. Your team together attacks the other team. Your team blocks together against the other team.
6) Things that affect all players with all heads. Things that affect all opponents hit each player on the other team. Combat damage that triggers an ability that affects a player (like Abyssal Specter) will make the controller of the ability specify which head is being affected while stacking the ability.
7) You just saw above what to do when only one head dies.

*Extra*: Playing simultaneously has proven to be much more enjoyable than having to wait for your turn to come around once every four turns. The feel for the gameplay is much more interactive and intricate than traditional duels. We're quite excited about finally having rules in place to help take multiplayer (and especially 2HG) to new heights.

Saviors of Kamigawa is on shelves now, and all of Kamigawa block will be legal in Standard just in time for the Regional events that are coming up on June 25th (and 26th in some locations). That's just three short weeks to discover the best technology for the emerging format. Good luck.

Class dismissed.


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