Can you counter your own spell

Asked by Minathia 3 years ago

The idea is if I play any spell with flashback from the graveyard, then play Hinder to counter it. To move it back into the library.

MagnorCriol says... #1

That's inventive.

Yes, you can. There's a few spells or abilities that say "counter target spell an opponent controls," in which case you can't use them to target your own spells of course, but other than that it's perfectly legal, if unorthodox.

(There was actually an interesting little rogue combo deck built around this - it used Pyromancer Ascension and Remand together to keep any spell you wanted in your hand. Cast the spell, get copies, cast Remand targeting the original so it returned to your hand, and the copies go on to do their dirty work.)

May I suggest, though, if you're looking to get cards back in your library from the graveyard, there's easier ways to do so. Unless you're specifically looking for it to be put on top of your library again. If not, something like Elixir of Immortality is probably easier to wield.

April 26, 2011 2:08 p.m.

supernick says... #2

anything with flashback is actually removed from play as the cost of the flashback.

April 26, 2011 2:10 p.m.

MagnorCriol says... #3

Roar of the Wurm (for Flashback reference)

702.31a Flashback appears on some instants and sorceries. It represents two static abilities: one that functions while the card is in a player's graveyard and the other that functions while the card is on the stack. "Flashback [cost]" means "You may cast this card from your graveyard by paying [cost] rather than paying its mana cost" and "If the flashback cost was paid, exile this card instead of putting it anywhere else any time it would leave the stack."
The last sentence being the most pertinent.So it's not actually part of the cost to activate Flashback. (Otherwise it couldn't be used like that, since it needs to go to the stack in order to resolve, and if you exile it it's not going to the stack.)However, this raises the interesting question - if Flashback tells you to exile the card instead of going anywhere else whenever it leaves the stack, but putting the card on the library is part of Hinder 's resolution, which wins?I'll go see if I can look this up. Good catch supernick.
April 26, 2011 2:26 p.m.

Minathia says... #4

Yea, this was the debate that occurred last night.

For reference, I wanted to play Time Stretch from my GY with Dralnu, Lich Lord , Hinder it back to the top of my library, draw and play, then pay flashback to gain riduculous amounts of turns. (Assuming I don't get another good Hinder like card IE: Remand

April 26, 2011 2:58 p.m.

thaimaishuu says... #5

I know Hinder is preventing the resolution of Roar of the Wurm , but it sounds like the exile part is the requirement for casting with flashback. Sort of like a delayed cost. So the card would be exiled no matter what.


"701.15d If an effect would cause a player to shuffle one or more specific objects into a library, and a replacement or prevention effect causes all such objects to be moved to another zone instead, that library isnt shuffled.

Example: Black Suns Zenith says, in part, Shuffle Black Suns Zenith into its owners library. Black Suns Zenith is in a graveyard, has gained flashback (due to Recoup, perhaps), and is cast from that graveyard. Black Suns Zenith will be exiled, and its owners library wont be shuffled."

April 26, 2011 3:02 p.m.

sporkife says... #6

It is exiled instead of returned to your hand. As part of Hinder 's resolution, the card would be moved from the stack to the top of your library. However, using flashback on it gives it a static replacement ability where if it leaves the stack to go to another zone it is instead exiled.

April 26, 2011 3:19 p.m.

Rhadamanthus says... Accepted answer #7

The Hinder ed flashback spell does get exiled, but it's because of how multiple replacement effects interact. When more than one replacement effect would apply to a single event, the affected player or controller of the affected object (or owner, if it doesn't have a controller) decides which order to apply them in. In this case, however, the end result ends up being the same:

Situation #1: When the card gets pointed towards the graveyard because of being countered, you apply the flashback replacement first, and it gets pointed towards exile instead. Hinder 's replacement effect doesn't have anything to apply to anymore (because nothing is going to the graveyard), so it gets ignored, and the card gets exiled.

Situation #2: When the card gets pointed towards the graveyard because of being countered, you apply Hinder 's replacement effect first, and it gets pointed towards the library instead. Now the flashback replacement effect gets applied (because the card is heading somewhere other than the stack), and the card gets exiled instead.

April 26, 2011 3:30 p.m.

MagnorCriol says... #8

That does sort of make sense, thaimaishuu (note: I just got your name, writing it out - I'm a swift one... =p ) but it's not an entirely analogous situation.

In the case of the example, the shuffling back into the library is part of the resolution of the spell with flashback. In that case, it resolves, and as part of its resolution, it tries to go to the graveyard - except there's a self-replacement effect on the card that tries to send it to the library instead - except there's a self-replacement effect with flashback that exiles it instead.

In the case we're discussing here, it's part of the resolution of another spell that puts the flashback'd spell somewhere else.

Also, exiling is not part of the cost to cast a spell with flashback. That's an effect of the old wordings of the cards - read the oracle text now:

"(You may cast this card from your graveyard for its flashback cost. Then exile it.)"

The CR I cited above also makes it pretty clear it's not part of the cost, it's a replacement effect generated by the ability.

At the bottom of this Cranial Insertion article, there's a bit where her talks about the interaction of Delay and a spell with flashback.

He explains how Delay uses a self-replacement effect to exile the card it counters with time counters instead of it sending it to the graveyard. He also talks about how self-replacement effects are applied before other replacement effects, so Delay 's effect trumps flashback's exile effect.

However, he then says that "Flashback sees that the spell is already headed for the [exile] zone and doesn't have any additional effect." This is where his scenario is different from ours: Flashback will instead see the card headed for the library, so I still don't really know what exactly is going to happen.

April 26, 2011 3:32 p.m.

MagnorCriol says... #9

It took me so long to write that up and cite the sources that two more people commented in the interim.

Rhadamanthus, I think your situation #2 is the correct outcome here.

It is important to note that in this case you don't get to choose the outcomes, since Hinder 's is a self-replacement effect, just like Delay or Remand , and self-replacement effects are always applied first:

614.14. Some replacement effects are not continuous effects. Rather, they are an effect of a resolving spell or ability that replace part or all of that spell or ability's own effect(s). Such effects are called self-replacement effects. When applying replacement effects to an event, self-replacement effects are applied before other replacement effects.Just like the Cranial Insertion guy pointed out.
But that just means your situation #2 is even more right, I think. Bravo!
April 26, 2011 3:38 p.m.

Rhadamanthus says... #10

MagnorCriol, I had forgotten about the special rule for self-replacement effects until I read it in your comment. Thanks for bringing it up. Yes, the situation I labeled as #2 is actually the only possible course of events.

April 26, 2011 3:41 p.m.

Minathia says... #11

Yep, I think Rhadamanthus nailed it with Situation #2. Bummer though, I wanted my free turns!

Thanks guys!

April 26, 2011 4:17 p.m.

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