Bill Guerin
Level II Judge


 

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Pojo's Magic The Gathering
Judge's Corner

Title: Copying a copy wrong ..
Questions: 19
1.28.05
 
Error correction time, courtesy of Chris Richter, StarCityGames.com Judge....
 
---
 
C: There is an error in your most recent article (Tuesday, 25 January). You wrote:
 
>>>Q: Can I clone a Doppelganger?  Or would I just clone whatever Doppelganger is ganging?
 
-Michael
 
A: When you Clone a Doppelganger, you copy the base Doppelganger card, not whatever the Doppelganger is copying right then.<<<
 
Here is the relevant rule:
 
503.2. When copying an object, the copy acquires the copiable values of the original object’s characteristics (name, mana cost, color, type, supertype, subtype, expansion symbol, rules text, power, and toughness) and, for an object on the stack, choices made when playing it (mode, targets, the value of X, whether a kicker cost was paid, how it will affect multiple targets, and so on). The “copiable values” are the values that are printed on the object, as modified by other copy effects, plus any values set for face-down spells or permanents. Other effects (including type-changing effects) and counters are not copied.
 
So this Clone will be whatever the Doppelganger is copying at that moment and have the Doppelganger ability.
 
-Chris
 
A: Yep. I had the rule stuck in my head that it was the original form of the thing that was being copied. Doesn't quite work when you copy a copy. Thanks.
 
---
 
And a clarification from last column ..
 
Q: I'd like to just check if this situation is correct.
 
I play a casual Zubera Reanimator deck. It focuses on using Iname, Death Aspect to get a ton of Zuberas in the grave, then Patriarch's Bidding brings them all onto the field to be sacrificed to a Blasting Station for lethal damage from Blasting effects and Ember-fist Zubera.
 
So, say I have 4 Ember-fist Zubera in the graveyard and I cast Patriarch's Bidding, naming 'zubera'. I have an untapped Blasting Station in play, that gets 4 untap triggers. I respond to the first to sacrifice one Ember-fist Zubera for one damage (presumably to my opponent, or one of his/her creatures). Now, would the Zubera trigger go on top of the untap triggers (meaning I can't sacrifice other Zuberas with the same Blasting Station to increase the effect)? (In this case, if I am right I would deal 14 damage: 4 from four Blasting Station effects, 1 from the first Zubera trigger, 2 from the second, 3 from the third, and 4 from the last.)
 
Also, what would happen if I was using Spawning Pit to sacrifice the Zubera? Since the sacrifice is part of the cost for its effect, could I use it multiple times before the Zubera trigger resolves to increase its effect? (In this case, if I'm right, I would deal 16 damage, 4 from each Zubera trigger, and get 4 charge counters for Spawning Pit.)
 
-The Artificer
 
A: You've got it all correct.
 
---
 
Moving on ...
 
Q: I was playing a Rochester tournament with some friends at my friend's house, and while we were a playing a problem came up concerning spells being spliced onto arcane.  I had attacked with the Soratami Mirror Guard and my opponent played Shining Shoal targeting my Mirror Guard, splicing Dampen Thought and Psychic Puppetry onto Shining Shoal.  I had Veil of Secrecy in my hand and I cast it in response to Shining Shoal.  My question is that now that the Mirror Guard has become an illegal target, do the spliced effects still go off?
 
-Ryan
 
A: Yes. A spell is countered only if ALL of its targets are illegal. Since the Shining Shoal (with the Dampen Thoughts and Psychic Puppetry spliced on) reads:
 
"The next X damage that a source of your choice would deal to you or a creature you control this turn is dealt to target creature or player instead. Target player puts the top four cards of his or her library into his or her graveyard. Tap or untap target permanent."
 
it has 3 separate targets, only one of which is illegal (or maybe two, if he chose to also target the Mirror Guard with the Puppetry portion). Since there are still legal targets (the player for Dampen Thought, and the permanent for Psychic Puppetry, assuming Puppetry didn't target the Mirror Guard), the spell will mill 4 and tap or untap the chosen permanent.
 
---
 
Q: If I put regeneration on Eternal Witness, when I trigger regeneration, would "it" come back as a new creature and use it's ability?
 
-Joe C.
 
A: No. When a creature regenerates, it does not leave play. So it would never "come into play again" off of a regeneration event.
 
---
 
Q: Say you play Hecatomb and after paying its mana cost you have 4 untapped swamps but 0-3 creatures in play, can you tap those swamps to deal 1 damage 4 times to another player or a creature?
 
A: (Oracle wording:)
Hecatomb
1BB  
Enchantment   
When Hecatomb comes into play, sacrifice Hecatomb unless you sacrifice four creatures.
Tap an untapped Swamp you control: Hecatomb deals 1 damage to target creature or player. 
 
Hecatomb's comes into play ability is a normal triggered ability, and it can be responded to before you have to sacrifice the creatures. So yes, you can have Hecatomb come into play, put the trigger on the stack, activate the ability on the Swamps that Hecatomb grants, and then when Hecatomb's trigger resolves, sacrifice it instead of sacrificing 4 creatures.
 
---
 
Q: Suppose you were using Hecatomb from Ice Age, which has tapping a swamp as part of the effect, not the cost, as well as R&D's Secret Lair in play...
 
A: I wondered when someone would put that card into a question. *groans*
 
(Ice Age wording:)
Hecatomb
1BB
Enchantment
When Hecatomb comes into play, sacrifice four creatures.
0: Tap target swamp you control to have Hecatomb deal 1 damage to target creature or player.
 
---
 
Q: Would Hecatomb basically read "0: Deal 1 damage to target creature or player" because you can tap a tapped card if it is for part of the effect right, just not if it is part of the cost?
 
-rja
 
A: We are in silver bordered land, so remember the silver bordered judge rule: you are at the whim of the judge you are asking. Different judges may rule differently.
 
Since the tapping of the swamp occurs as an effect, you can do this just fine.
 
---
 
Q: Can you use spells to redirect damage from mana burn?
 
A: No, because mana burn is loss of life, not damage.
 
---
 
Q: If I tap a land that is enchanted with a Squirrel Nest, does it produce mana as well as a squirrel?
 
A: No. You can only pay the cost of either of the effects once. Once you have tapped the land to pay the cost of either making a squirrel or to get mana, you can't pay the cost of tapping the land to get the other effect. See Mantras 1 and 11.
 
---
 
Q: If I have a Thrashing Wumpus out as well as a creature with protection from black, will the other creature take damage from the Wumpus's ability if used?
 
-J
 
A: No. Damage dealt by a black source to a creature with protection from black is prevented. See Mantra 4.
 
---
 
Q: I have another 8.5 tails question:
 
It is my turn, I have a Lumengrid Sentinel and my opponent has 8.5 tails in play with tons of available mana.  If I play an artifact and try to tap 8.5 tails with the triggered ability on the Sentinel, can my opponent respond by turning the Sentinel white and then giving 8.5 tails pro. white so the effect fizzles?
 
-Robert H.
 
A: Even though the Sentinel say that you tap the permanent, the source of the ability is the Sentinel. So when the ability resolves, a white Sentinel is trying to have you do something to a creature with protection from white. Therefore, the ability will be countered.
 
---
 
Q: I have a Kitsune Mystic in play and five mana to spare. My opponent has four creatures (any creature, Grizzly Gears for example) in play. I play Lingering Death on one of the Grizzlies on my turn. The enchanted creature needs to be sacrificed at end of his/her turn. I then use Mystic's ability on his turn to move the enchantment on each of the other bears (leaving me tapped out). Does my opponent have to sac all bears, or only the one enchanted at end of turn?
 
-William
 
A: Note the "At end of turn" clause. "At end of turn" effects trigger only once, and that is when the end step starts. The creature that the Lingering Death was on when the end step started will be sacrificed, but the others will not.
 
(You can make him sacrifice one creature per turn this way, though.)
 
Lingering Death
Enchant Creature 
1B
At the end of enchanted creature’s controller’s turn, that player sacrifices that creature.
 
---
 
Q: If a Pit Spawn damages a Darksteel Colossus, would the Pit Spawn be destroyed or would the Colossus be removed before it could strike back?
 
-John
 
A: Since the Pit Spawn has first strike, that means it deals its damage first. Indestructible will also not save the Colossus from being removed from the game. So your Pit Spawn will survive.
 
---
 
Q: My fiance and I both play with several land cards that have a Tap ability. i.e. "Tap: Add Red mana to your mana pool." Does this mean when this card is tapped it generates two mana?
 
A: No. It just produces one mana.
 
(Even if it did have 2 instances of the ability, you could only play one of the abilities, as you can only pay the costs once. Mantras 1 and 11, just like above.)
 
---
 
Q: We are unclear on exactly when the stack resolves. It seems like it doesn't just resolve at the end of the turn, but at other times during the 5 phases.
 
A: Any time both players decline to play a spell or ability, the top item on the stack resolves.
 
(If there are no items on the stack, the current phase or step ends.)
 
This will happen at least 8 times per turn (upkeep, draw, first main, beginning of combat, declare attackers, end of combat, second main, and end step). (However, most players don't play that strictly, and simply pass over points where none of them wish to do anything.)
 
---
 
Q: If I have a creature that has 1/1 and a tap ability of say "Tap: Do 1 damage to target creature or player," does this mean when I attack with that creature it becomes tapped and the ability goes on the stack?
 
A: No. Tapping an attacking creature is a special game action. To play the ability, you have to specifically play the ability and pay the cost of tapping the creature. Simply having the creature become tapped does not activate any abilities on that creature.
 
---
 
Q: Can I tap it without attacking?
 
A: Yes. This is the only way it will deal damage with its ability.
 
---
 
Q: If a spell causes the creature to become tapped does the ability get triggered and go on the stack?
 
A: No. It is not a triggered ability, it is an activated ability. You have to very specifically play activated abilities for them to do their thing.
 
---
 
Q: Do you have any suggestions for keeping track of the stack? Currently we are actually "stacking" the applicable cards, one after the other, which has led to a card ending up in the others deck later.
 
A: This is the best way to illustrate the stack, and I even do this sometimes.
 
One way to prevent a card from ending up in the other person's deck is to put them on the stack just like you would put a card in play on the field. That way, when you take the top card off the stack, the way the card is facing tells you who's card it is.
 
Alternatively, you could just use different colored sleeves :).
 
---
 
Q: If +1/+1 counters are on a creature that is sent to the graveyard, I believe I read that the counters stay.
 
-JM
 
A: This is incorrect. The counters are removed from the creature as the creature leaves play. (Certain abilities, like modular, allow you to transfer the counters. But if the card doesn't say to move them, simply take them off as the creature leaves play.)
 
See you Tuesday.
 
Bill Guerin
DCI Level 2 Judge

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