Rhadamanthus Q&A Decklord

I'm Mike, from The Mana Pool.

I first learned to play around the release of Ice Age (1995-ish), and I've been going strong ever since. I was formerly a DCI-certified Rules Advisor (that certification has since been removed from the Judge Program structure), and like to hang out in the Q&A; area here on Tapped Out. If you notice a mistake in one of my responses, don't be shy about pointing it out. Above all else, I want the person's question to be answered correctly!

As a general rule, my deckbuilding is influenced far more than it should be by what I think would be "interesting/funny" instead of what's probably the better choice of cards. The friend who first taught me how to play has a very strong philosophy of "Not every card is good, but pretty much any card can be made good", and it's been a big influence on me ever since.

I also tend to design and build strictly from my existing collection. If there's a good card for a deck that I don't have in a list, there's a good chance I don't own any, but please suggest it anyway, so then maybe I'll remember to go out and get some!

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In your example:

  • Narset, Enlightened Master allows you to cast the cards from exile without paying their mana costs this turn, but doesn't give any extra permission to cast them at an unusual time
  • Etali, Primal Storm allows you to cast the card from exile without paying the mana cost right now, during the resolution of the triggered ability, but not at any other time

The only reason a player is able to do anything in a game of Magic is because some rule or effect gives them permission to do so (the concept of a "timing restriction" is a bit of a misnomer, as the only true "restriction" in the timing rules is that you can't play a land on someone else's turn). The rules of the game give you the permissions that allow you to do things "normally", but effects from the cards themselves can give you permission to do things in an unusual way or restrict certain things from happening in a particular way.

May 22, 2018 4:57 p.m.

Said on Gruul Charm...


This thread has been moved to the General subforum. The Rules Q&A page is intended to be for questions about game rules, tournament rules, and specific card interactions.

May 13, 2018 11:22 p.m.

The key thing to know is that a copy of a spell is an exact copy, including all the decisions you made while casting it. Modes, targets, divisions, the payment of additional or alternative costs, etc. This is why effects that copy spells specifically give you permission to change the targets, otherwise they wouldn't be very interesting. The copy effect doesn't say you can change the division of damage, so you don't.

May 12, 2018 8:45 a.m.

And to clear up one more thing in your question: Supernatural Stamina's "when this creature dies..." effect isn't a replacement effect. Rather, it's a triggered ability (they always start with one of the words "when", "whenever", or "at"). It triggers when the creature goes from the battlefield to the graveyard (the definition of "dies"), but by the time the ability is put onto the stack a token would have already been removed from the graveyard as a state-based action.

May 11, 2018 4:26 p.m.

Said on Debt of loyalty ......


Right, moving a permanent to the graveyard is the usual result of being destroyed, but regeneration replaces the "destroy" event entirely. The commander wouldn't be changing zones so there's no choice for its owner to make.

May 11, 2018 11:47 a.m.

Said on Arahbo Roar of ......


If an effect just says "power" then it means the creature's current total power, including any + or - effects. That means, for example, if you use the secont ability on the same creature you targeted with the first ability then the value of X will also take into account the extra +3/+3.

May 11, 2018 11:44 a.m.

Said on Naban, Dean of ......


It's just 3 cards in this situation. Note that Naban and Panharmonicon don't say "twice", they just say "an additional time". Silvergill Adept's ability will trigger 1 + 1 + 1 = 3 times. The result of multiple Nabans/Panharmonicons is one of the things noted in the official rulings given in their Gatherer entries: Naban, Panharmonicon

Here's another way to think about it: It was only the first trigger that was actually caused by a wizard/creature entering the battlefield. The additional triggers were caused by Naban's and Panharmonicon's abilities, so they won't apply to those.

May 9, 2018 3:20 p.m.

That's correct, you won't be able to cast the spell if you don't meet the other requirements.

The way the rules are set up, restrictions are stronger than permissions. The most common type of restriction uses the word "can't" somewhere in the rules text, but wordings like "only if [condition]" and "only during [step/phase]" are also restrictions. The permission given by Cascade won't let you get around them.

May 8, 2018 12:54 p.m.

Said on i need help ......


The key thing here is specifically what kind of event Corpsejack Menace's ability applies to and how to apply it. Your friend's understanding seems to be that it will change a "double the number of counters" event to "double the number of counters, then double them again", but that's not how it works.

When you double the number of counters on something, you put a number of counters on it equal to however many it already has. Corpsejack Menace affects the number of counters being put. In your example, the 8 +1/+1 counters that Kalonian Hydra would put onto itself get doubled to 16 instead.

May 7, 2018 12:47 p.m.

Said on Does copying a ......


The copy is a 4/4 black zombie version of Mishra's Self-Replicator without haste.

If God-Pharaoh's Gift was written to say something like "create a token ... with haste in addition to its other abilities" then haste would be one of its copiable characteristics. That is, the haste ability would be part of the token's rules text given to it by Gift's copy effect. However, as-written, that isn't how God-Pharaoh's Gift works. It creates the 4/4 black zombie token copy of the original and then gives it a temporary haste ability.

May 5, 2018 5:39 p.m.

Dauntless Bodyguard's second ability doesn't target anything, as it doesn't specifically use the word "target". The rules for linked abilities are exactly why this works.

May 4, 2018 6:35 p.m.

For a rules reference, see the following:

607.1 An object may have two abilities printed on it such that one of them causes actions to be taken or objects or players to be affected and the other one directly refers to those actions, objects, or players. If so, these two abilities are linked: the second refers only to actions that were taken or objects or players that were affected by the first, and not by any other ability.

607.2 There are different kinds of linked abilities.

607.2d If an object has an ability printed on it that causes a player to "choose a [value]" or and an ability printed on it that refers to "the chosen [value]," "the last chosen [value]," or similar, those abilities are linked. The second ability refers only to a choice made as a result of the first ability.

Dauntless Bodyguard's abilities fit the definition given in 607.1, and I think it's safe to assume it's covered by the sub-category described in 607.2d. The word "value" isn't strictly defined anywhere in the rules document, and is used to cover multiple different concepts in various places (numerical values, colors, types, subtypes)

May 4, 2018 5:14 p.m.

Yes, this works. Dauntless Bodyguard's abilities are linked, and the "chosen creature" mentioned in the second ability is understood to refer to the same object chosen for the first ability. It's written that way because the chosen object will still be a creature in 99.9% of in-game situations, but it doesn't require that the object is still a creature.

May 4, 2018 5:08 p.m.

In your original question the token can't copy anything else because it doesn't have the "as this enters..." ability. A copy effect takes into account the results of any other copy effects the original is subject to, so the token is just a non-Legendary Sakashima the Impostor with flying and ": Return [this] to its owner's hand at end of turn".

For your second question, the way the relevant rule is written seems to indicate the token won't be legendary:

706.9b Some copy effects specifically state that they don't copy certain characteristics and instead retain their original values. These effects use the phrase "except its [characteristic] is still [value]" or "except it's still [value(s)]." They may also simply state that certain characteristics are not copied.

So if the "except it's still Legendary" part of the effect really means it keeps the original Legendary/non-Legendary supertype value then whatever the token copies won't be Legendary because it's original value for that characteristic doesn't include Legendary. This seems very strange because it implies that if the token copies a Legendary creature the result won't be Legendary. It's so strange that I'm not satisfied this answer is correct, but it's what the rule seems to say.

May 4, 2018 9:29 a.m.


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