Published on 04/02/2018

A Quizzical Easter Egg Hunt

Cranial Translation
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Our Easter Bunny isn't this scary, we promise!
Happy Easter everyone! (Or happy Spring if you don't do the Easter thing!) In honor of the holiday, we've devised a fun-filled Easter Egg hunt for our loyal readers! Instead of having to search through grass and bushes, you just have to answer some questions. And instead of finding chocolate eggs and candy, you get to gain some knowledge! We promise you, this is better... somehow. (Besides, Moko already ate all of our candy, so this is the best we can do.)

If you have questions you'd like us to answer, please feel free to email us at or tweet questions to @CranialTweet. One of our authors will reply with an answer, and your question might appear in a future article!

Q: Your Angel of Invention enters the battlefield and your opponent Shocks it before its Fabricate trigger can resolve. What happens when the Fabricate trigger resolves?

A: The answer is...

A: The source of the trigger is gone, so nothing happens.
B: You create two Servo tokens.
C: You choose counters or tokens. If you choose counters, nothing happens. If you choose tokens, then you create two Servo tokens.
D: This can't happen. You make your choice for the Fabricate trigger as Angel of Invention enters the battlefield and it either enters with counters or creates Servos at that time.
E: You try to console yourself with chocolate. That angel was your best friend!

The answer is
B, you create two Servo tokens! (Of course, E could also be correct. Who are we to tell you how to deal with loss?)
Normally, you don't make a choice for a Fabricate trigger until it resolves. When it does, you can choose to put counters on the source of the trigger. If choose not to, or if you can't because the source of the trigger isn't on the battlefield, then you default to creating Servo tokens. That's what happens here.

Q: Your opponent's Kitesail Freebooter is exiling your Glimmer of Genius. If you bounce the Freebooter with Baral's Expertise, will you be able to cast Glimmer of Genius for free?

A: The answer is...

A: No, because Glimmer of Genius won't be back in your hand until after Baral's Expertise finishes resolving.
B: No, because you have to choose which card to cast for free when Baral's Expertise starts to resolve.
C: Yes, because Glimmer of Genius is back in your hand immediately after Kitesail Freebooter leaves the battlefield.
D: Maybe? I don't know. You're the judge, not me!

The answer is
C, yes you can! The duration of Kitesail Freebooter's exile effect ends the moment it leaves the battlefield, so your exiled Glimmer of Genius returns to your hand right away and is there in plenty of time for you to choose to cast it for free. Also, you don't need to choose which card, if any, to cast for free until Baral's Expertise tells you to cast it.

Q: On your turn, you untap, draw, and then proceed to attack with Etali, Primal Storm, which is the only creature on the battlefield. Etali's trigger exiles the cards listed below. Which of them can you cast?

A: The answer is...

A: Seize the Day
B: Haakon, Stromgald Scourge
C: Even the Odds
D: Illusory Angel
E: Counterspell

The answer is
A, D, and E! You can't cast Haakon because he's not in your graveyard. You can't cast Even the Odds because you don't control fewer creatures than each opponent. These restrictions still apply no matter what other effects give you permission to cast these cards.
You can cast Counterspell, but only if there's a legal target for it on the stack. Considering the situation, that can only be one of the other spells cast off of Etali's trigger.
You can cast Illusory Angel as long as you cast one of the other cards first, such as Seize the Day.
As for Seize the Day, while it's the easiest card to cast here, it will just untap Etali when it resolves. Because it's not resolving during a main phase, it can't create an extra combat phase or main phase.

Q: The whole CI gang is playing a multiplayer game. I cast Cruel Entertainment targeting Carsten and Nathan, then copy it with Twincast. When Twincast resolves, I have the copy target Nathan and Callum. Which of the following are true about who will control whom on their next turns?


A: Carsten will control Nathan on his next turn.
B: Nathan will control Carsten on his next turn.
C: Callum will control Nathan on his next turn.
D: Nathan will control Callum on his next turn.
E: Moko will continue to control all of us forever.

The answer is
A, B, and D! (Also probably E, but let's not get into that right now.)
The copy of Cruel Entertainment will resolve first, giving Nathan control of Callum during his next turn and Callum control of Nathan during his next turn.
When the original Cruel Entertainment resolves, it gives Nathan control of Carsten during his next turn and it gives Carsten control of Nathan during his next turn. Since this effect is newer, it overwrites the effect of the first Cruel Entertainment that would have let Callum control Nathan on his next turn.

I prefer to collect chocolate eggs, personally...
Q: You cast Crow Storm as your first spell of the turn. You then target it with Increasing Vengeance cast from your hand, for which you pay the conspire cost granted to it by Wort, the Raidmother, targeting the copy at Crow Storm as well. As soon as the original Increasing Vengeance resolves, you cast it from your graveyard, once again targeting Crow Storm and paying the conspire cost from Wort. When everything finishes resolving, how may Storm Crows did you create this turn?

A: The answer is...

A: 5
B: 6
C: 9
D: 21
E: Too many to count!

The answer is
B, you get six Storm Crows! That's really not very impressive!
You won't get any copies from Storm triggers, as there were no spells cast before you cast Crow Storm and none of the other copies of Crow Storm were cast.
Increasing Vengeance cast from your hand, as well as its conspired copy, will each give you one copy of Crow Storm for one token each. Increasing Vengeance cast from your graveyard will give you another two copies and two tokens, but its conspired copy will only give you one because that copy wasn't cast at all so it doesn't get the graveyard bonus.
Putting it all together, you get one token from the original Crow Storm, two tokens from the Conspire copies of Increasing Vengeance, and three tokens from the Increasing Vengeance copies for a total of six tokens.

Q: The Scarab God has gone mad with power and is reanimating everything in sight to help build up Bolas's army of Eternals! However, one of its reanimated minions isn't fitting in with the rest of the army. Which one of these tokens created by the Scarab God isn't a 4/4 black Zombie?

A: The answer is...

A: Tarmogoyf
B: Eldrazi Displacer
C: Avian Changeling
D: Phyrexian Metamorph copying an eternalized Earthshaker Khenra
E: Dusk Charger with the City's Blessing

The answer is
E! Dusk Charger still benefits from the city's blessing, making it a 6/6 creature here and too big for the Scarab God's tastes.
Phyrexian Metamorph is an artifact creature, but it's still a 4/4 black Zombie, so it fits in with the others here. (Yes yes, it's also a Jackal Warrior too.)
Tarmogoyf, Eldrazi Displacer, and Avian Changeling all lack the characteristic-defining abilities that would set their P/T, color, or creature types since The Scarab God's ability specifies different characteristics for those values in the tokens it creates. When something is copied with such an exception, neither the original characteristic or any ability that defines it will be copied over.

Q: Angler Drake has an optional triggered ability with a target. Which of the following describes how an ability like this works?

A: The answer is...

A: You may choose a target when you put the ability on the stack. If you do, then the effect happens when the ability resolves.
B: You do nothing when you put the ability on the stack. When it resolves, you may choose a target. If you do, a new ability goes on the stack. When that ability resolves, the effect happens.
C: You may choose a target when you put the ability on the stack. If you do you, you choose whether or not the effect happens when the ability resolves.
D: You choose a target when you put the ability on the stack. When the ability resolves, you choose whether or not the effect happens.
E: You do nothing when you put the ability on the stack. When the ability resolves, you may choose a target. If you do, the effect happens immediately.

The answer is
Even though it seems a bit counter-intuitive, you have to choose a target for these abilities if you can, even if you don't plan on having the effect happen. The target is chosen when the ability is put on the stack, and then when the ability resolves you can choose if the effect happens or not.

Q: Which of the following spells will cause Blaze Commando's ability to trigger multiple times? (You control only Blaze Commando and your opponent controls one creature with two auras attached to it.)

A: The answer is...

A: Illuminate kicked with its kicker
B: Pyroclasm
C: Blood Oath, with two cards of the chosen type revealed
D: Aura Barbs
E: Searing Blaze

The answer is
Blaze Commando cares about precisely one thing: How many times an instant or sorcery spell you control deals damage. Of the spells listed, only Illuminate says that it deals damage and then deals damage again. (The number of times the verb phrase "deals damage" is used is what matters.)
Pyroclasm and Searing Blaze deal damage to multiple creatures and/or players at the same time, so it's still only one instance of dealing damage. Blood Oath deals all of its damage at once, with the "3 damage for each" wording serving only as a multiplier to determine to total amount of damage that will be dealt.
Aura Barbs doesn't deal any damage itself, but rather causes the enchantments to deal damage to their controllers and the creatures they enchant.

Q: You're playing a Rivals of Ixalan draft at Friday Night Magic at your local game store and you've just drawn Mastermind's Acquisition. Which of the following cards can it put into your hand?

A: The answer is...

A: Tetzimoc, Primal Death which you drafted last week
B: A Swamp from the shop's land station
C: Crushing Canopy from your sideboard
D: Damnation from your Commander deck
E: Moment of Craving from your deck

The answer is
B, C, and E!
When you're playing in a tournament like Friday Night Magic, "a card you own from outside the game" means a card in your sideboard. For a limited event, any card in your card pool that you're not playing is in your sideboard, as are an unlimited number of normal basic lands (i.e. not Wastes or Basic Snow lands). You can't get cards you own from outside of your sideboard, including cards from previous drafts or from decks for other formats.

Q: You control a Panharmonicon and your opponent controls an Anointed Procession. Your opponent casts Call to the Feast and you cast Crafty Cutpurse in response. When the dust has settled, how many Vampire tokens did you create this turn?

A: The answer is...

A: 12
B: 6
C: 9
D: 3
E: My opponent chooses if I create 3 or 6 tokens.

The answer is
When Crafty Cutpurse enters the battlefield, Panharmonicon causes its ability to trigger twice. However, the second instance of the trigger is redundant because Cutpurse's ability is a replacement effect, not a trigger, so multiple instances of it won't give you extra tokens.
When Call to the Feast goes to resolve, both Anointed Procession and Crafty Cutpurse's trigger want to modify what the spell does. Normally in a case like this, the spell's controller would choose which replacement effect to apply first, but effects that modify under whose control a permanent enters the battlefield have to be applied first and so Crafty Cutpurse's ability applies first. Now that you're the one creating tokens, Anointed Procession's effect no longer applies because its controller isn't the one creating the tokens. There are no more replacement effects to apply, so Call to the Feast now resolves and you create three Vampire tokens.

We at CI do not endorse the inclusion of
venomous snakes in Easter baskets.
Q: Which of the following cards cannot be played in a Commander deck with Oketra the True as its commander?

A: The answer is...

A: Acorn Catapult
B: Blind Obedience
C: Archangel Avacyn
D: Silver Knight
E: Bringer of the White Dawn

The answer is
C and E!
A card's color identity is what determines if it can be played in a Commander or Brawl deck. No cards in the deck can have a color identity that falls outside of the color identity of the deck's commander or brawler. Three factors determine a card's color identity: Colored mana symbols in its mana cost, colored mana symbols in its rules text, and its color indicator (if it has one).
Oketra has a white mana symbol in her mana cost, a white mana symbol in her rules text, and no color indicator. This means that Oketra's color identity is white.
The listed cards all have only white and/or generic mana in their mana costs, so they all pass on that front.
Bringer of the White Dawn has all five colored mana symbols in its rules text as its alternate cost, so this means it has a five-color color identity and can only be played in a deck with a five-color commander. Blind Obedience has a hybrid white and black mana symbol in its text, but only in its reminder text. Reminder text isn't rules text and so it doesn't count toward determining color identity. The other three cards have no colored mana symbols in their rules text.
Archangel Avacyn is the only one of these cards with a color indicator, which she has on her back face (Avacyn, the Purifier). Because Avacyn has a red color indicator in addition to her white mana cost, she has a white and red color identity and can only be played in deck whose commander also has at least a white and red color identity.
Acorn Catapult and Silver Knight both list color words in their rules text, but these don't count toward determining color identity.

Q: Which of the following costs does Goblin Warchief reduce?

A: The answer is...

A: Gempalm Incinerator's cycling cost
B: Goblin Heelcutter's dash cost
C: Mogg War Marshal's echo cost
D: Pyrewild Shaman's bloodrush cost
E: Reckless Bushwhacker's surge cost

The answer is
B and E!
Dash and surge are alternate costs to cast the cards they appear on, so Goblin Warchief's cost reduction applies to them.
Cycling and bloodrush are activated abilities, and echo is a triggered ability. None of these are costs to cast these cards, so these costs aren't reduced by Goblin Warchief's ability.

I hope you enjoyed this easter egg hunt! The knowledge you've gained isn't as tasty as some cheap foil-wrapped chocolate, but hopefully it will last you longer. As always, you can read more Q&A from me over at my blog at and Carsten will be back here with more delicious answers for you all next week!

- Charlotte


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