Published on 01/11/2021

Topsy Turvy

Maybe Start Reading This One From The Bottom

Cranial Translation
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Well, that was weird and unexpected. I guess I'll just have to undo whatever it is I did, and we'll see you all next week!


A: You'll still need to pay three mana to cast the Rollick. Casting a spell without paying its mana cost only gets around the mana cost of the spell. It won't help for any additional costs to cast the spell. So while you don't need to pay the mana cost to cast the Rollick, you still need to pay the additional cost from the Grid, and will cost three mana to cast it on an opponent's turn.

Q: My opponent controls a Defense Grid. I control my commander and I have Deadly Rollick in my hand. If I want to cast the Rollick on my opponent's turn, how much do I have to pay?


A: Nope, your Agent won't do anything here. The Agent only works if your opponent is searching their own library. With the Grasp, they're searching another player's library, so the Agent won't do anything and they'll search your library for a card like normal.

Q: My opponent casts Praetor's Grasp targeting me. I flash in Opposition Agent. Do I get to search my own library for a card?


A: You don't get to cascade. Imoti must be on the battlefield when Dargo becomes cast in order for it to have cascade. But since you sacrificed Imoti during announcement to help pay for Dargo, it won't be on the battlefield when Dargo becomes cast, and Dargo won't have cascade.

Q: If I cast Dargo, the Shipwrecker, sacrifcing Imoti, Celebrant of Bounty to help pay for Dargo, do I still get the cascade trigger?


A: When your next turn normally would be. Because of the three Mantas entering the battlefield, you'll end up skipping your next three turns. But when the three Manta leave play at the end of turn, that causes you to take three extra turns. You would take three extra turns after the turn is over, but those three extra turns are negated by skipping three turns from the Mantas entering the battlefield. The net result is that you skip the extra turns you would have taken, and your next turn is when your next turn would normally be.

Q: I use the ability of Araumi of the Dead Tide to encore back my Wormfang Manta, getting three copies of the Manta. Between skipping and getting extra turns, when exactly is my next turn?


A: Yep, they'll still get Xenagos back. The delayed trigger from Zara will look at whatever permanent its attack trigger put onto the battlefield, even if that permanent is not currently a creature. So not only did your opponent not get hit by their own Xenagos (since it wasn't a creature, it was never attacking and not in combat), your opponent will still get Xenagos back at the end of turn.

Q: I attack with Zara, Renegade Recruiter, and I snag a Xenagos, God of Revels from my opponent's hand. My devotion is not high enough to make it a creature. Will it still be returned to my opponent's hand at the end of turn?



This is normal.
A: Yes and no. Yes, you could change the target of Ardenn's ability to your Spellskite. However, the choice of what auras and equipment to attach to the target happens when the trigger resolves. So while you can change the target of the ability to Spellskite, your opponent can simply choose not to attach anything to Spellskite when the ability resolves.

Q: My opponent controls Ardenn, Intrepid Archaeologist. They target one of their creatures with its trigger. Can I use Spellskite and change the target so my Spellskite gets everything they were going to attach to their creature?


A: The Metamorph is still attacking and will deal damage like normal. Defender prevents the creature from being declared as an attacker, but giving an already-attacking creature defender won't do anything to it - it's still attacking. Your Metamorph will become a copy of the 7/4 Wall, and it's still attacking your opponent, despite being a creature with defender.

Q: I attack my opponent with Nascent Metamorph, but the creature my opponent revealed is Illusionary Wall. Is my Metamorph still attacking, or will having defender remove it from combat?



A: Nope. In order for Edric's ability to trigger, the creature must deal one or more combat damage to the opponent. Dealing zero damage is the same as not dealing any damage at all. Since your Envoy has a power of 0, it won't deal any damage in combat, and Edric's ability will not trigger.

Q: I control Edric, Spymaster of Trest and an Aven Envoy. If I attack my opponent with the Envoy and they don't block, does Edric trigger?


A: Yep, you can - as long as you sacrifice them in the right order.

You don't sacrifice everything at the same time when resolving the Ritual. You sacrifice a permanent, and then the opponent loses 2 life unless they sacrifice a permanent or discard a card. Then you get the option of sacrificing another permanent to repeat the process. If you sacrifice the Enslave first, you immediately lose control of the creature and your opponent regains control of the creature (even if it's the middle of a spell or ability resolving), so you won't be able to sacrifice the creature since you no longer control it.

But if you sacrifice the creature first, you'll also be able to sacrifice Enslave. That's because state-based actions are not checked in the middle of the Ritual resolving, so while the creature is dead, Enslave is still on the battlefield (and won't go to the graveyard until the Ritual is completely done resolving), letting you sacrifice Enslave as well.

Q: I have control of an opponent's creature because of Enslave. If I cast Forbidden Ritual, can I sacrifice both Enslave and the creature I stole?


A: Nope, you don't get to untap. The Muse's ability works during your opponent's untap step, but because of Stasis, each player is going to skip their untap step. So you don't get to untap your permanents on your opponent's turn, since your opponent is skipping their untap step.

Q: I control Stasis and a Seedborn Muse. Do I get to untap my permanents on my opponent's turn?


A: Nope, it won't untap. The Web says that a land with an activated ability that's not a mana ability won't untap during its controller's untap step. Cycling is an activated ability, and it's not a mana ability, so that will prevent your Triome from untapping. The Web doesn't care that cycling can't be activated if it's on the battlefield, just that it's a nonmana activated ability, so your Triome won't untap.

Q: My opponent controls Tsabo's Web, and I have a tapped Ketria Triome in play. Do I get to untap my Triome during my untap step?


A: Nope, you don't get a token. For the Collar's ability to trigger, the creature must be a human when it dies. It doesn't matter what it looks like in the graveyard. While Gatstaf Arsonists is a human, the Ravagers is not a human, so if it dies as the Ravagers, you don't get the Collar trigger.

Q: I control a Gatstaf Ravagers equipped with Avacyn's Collar and the Ravagers die. Will the Collar trigger and give me a token?


A: Probably not. Once everything dies, they become new objects in the graveyard. They are no longer affected by the Entity's ability and won't have all creature types. Since they have their normal creature types instead of all creature types, it might be difficult to be able to shuffle all of the creatures that just died into your library - for example, you would have to name "Elf" or "Mutant" to shuffle the Soultiller into your library.

Q: I control a variety of creatures, including a Mirror Entity and an Elvish Soultiller. If my opponent plays Day of Judgment, can I activate the Entity's ability, then use the Soultiller's ability to shuffle everything that just died into my library?



Extra phases are a common sign
of a time travel mix-up.
A: Nope, its ability won't trigger at all. Because of the Engineer, your Thopter doesn't enter as a 1/1 - it enters as a 0/0 creature. Since a 1/1 creature did not enter the battlefield, the Sword's ability will not trigger and the Sword will not return to the battlefield.

Q: My opponent controls a Plague Engineer naming "Thopter". If I activate the ability of Thopter Foundry, sacrificing a Sword of the Meek, will I still be able to return the Sword to the battlefield?


A: Nope, you have to counter before they search. Searching for a creature card happens when the Chord resolves. You won't know what they're planning on searching for when you get a chance to respond, so you'll have to decide if the Chord is worth countering before you know what they're going to search for.

Q: My opponent casts Chord of Calling with X=6. Can I wait see what they're going search for, then decide if I want to counter it or not?


A: Bad news - you can't even pick 1 for the copy. The Scepter tells you to cast the copy without paying its mana cost, and if you're casting a spell with an X in the cost without paying its mana cost, the only value you can choose for X is zero. So you'll be casting copies of the Intervention with X=0, making the Intervention a poor idea to imprint onto your Scepter.

Q: I cast Isochron Scepter, and I imprint Erebos's Intervention onto the Scepter. Am I restricted to having X=1, or can I pick a larger X?



A: Nope, you cannot. The Fires will know about spells that you cast before it enters the battlefield that turn. If the Fires was your first spell of the turn, you can cast one more spell that turn. If the Fires was your second (or third, etc) spell that turn, you won't be able to cast any more spells that turn.

Q: I cast Fires of Invention. Once it resolves, can I cast two more spells for free this turn?


A: You can kick it as much as you want. Kicker doesn't affect the converted mana cost of the spell you're casting. So you'll be able to kick the Chalice as many times as you want to, since its converted mana cost won't change even if you're kicking it mulitple times.

Q: I control Lurrus of the Dream-Den and I have an Everflowing Chalice in my graveyard. Can I only kick the Chalice once, or as many times as I want?


A: You're only able to cast Commit. You can only cast the aftermath side of a split card from the graveyard. You can't cast it from any other zone. The Mastery tells you to exile the card, create a copy, and then cast the card from exile. But since you're casting the copy from exile, not your graveyard, you ignore the side with aftermath and can only cast the side without aftermath (in this case, Commit).

Q: I cast Mizzix's Mastery, target a Commit // Memory in my graveyard. Can I cast the Memory side, or can I only cast Commit?



I can still blame this on Teferi, right?

A: Nope, you get to keep your 5/5 Serpent around. When Glass Casket's trigger resolves, if the Casket is not on the battlefield, the trigger does nothing. The Serpent isn't exiled and then immediately returned to the battlefield, it won't leave the battlefield at all. Since the Serpent never leaves the battlefield, it will keep its counters and will remain on the battlefield as a 5/5 creature.

Q: I have a 5/5 Stonecoil Serpent in play. My opponent casts Glass Casket, and targets my Serpent with the enter the battlefield trigger. In response, I destroy my opponent's Casket with Wilt. Will I end up losing my Serpent anyways?



While I get this figured out, if you have a rules question, you can send it to us and we'll send you an answer back. You might even see your questionused in a future article. You can send shorter questions to us via our Twitter account at @CranialTweet, and you can send longer questions to our e-mail account moko@cranialinsertion.com .

Hiya everyone, and welcome back to Cranial Insertion! Over the holidays, I was looking around the Cranial Insertion basement over the holidays, and I came across a time machine! Unfortunately, it seems that Moko has eaten the instruction manual, and the button I pressed didn't seem to do anything. Oh well, I guess I'll figure it out once I'm done with this week's article.


 

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