2019 Holiday Exchange!
 
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The End of an Era
  • posted a message on Geist of Saint Traft Commander Question
    It is first important to recognize that there are different variations of Commander. The Multiplayer variant, which is what is generally used when people say "Commander" does indeed match your summary. There is no Banned as Commander list and Geist is not on the regular ban list. You can use him as your general.

    However, in Duel Commander (or "French") he is banned as a Commander. But, his format is for 1v1 play and should not be used in multiplayer play unless your playgroup explicitly says that is what they are using.

    And, then there is the MTGO 1v1 banlist where Geist is also not banned.

    There are other variants so it is important to know what your playgroup is actually using. If you are using the multiplayer rules, those rules, along with the banlist, can be found here

    EDIT: I would also like to point out that this exact question was asked here by some user named....Rasalghul1989. What an amazing coincidence...
    Posted in: Magic Rulings
  • posted a message on Medomai's Prophecy Ruling
    Ah, true. I was going off of the card link for Meddling Mage on this site expecting it to be correct (it does say "Oracle Text" after all). I have gotten bitten by that in the past so I need to remember that the Oracle Text when clicking on card links here are not always correct for whatever reason.
    Posted in: Rumored Card Rulings
  • posted a message on Yarok and Imprint
    Well, the easy one first. Semblance Anvil, with 2 cards exiled with it, will mean that anything cast that shares a type with *either* exiled card will have its cost reduced.

    Now Soul Foundry. Because you have two cards exiled with it, the {X} in the cost is the sum of the CMC of both exiled cards. So, if you exile something with CMC 2 and another with CMC 3, the cost to activate it is {5}. When you do activate it though, you get a token of both cards (whether you want both or not) so you still get use out of both in exile; it just costs a little more.
    Posted in: Magic Rulings
  • posted a message on Setting Excel up to show prices for cards?
    Scryfall has a pretty good API for this if you are willing to spend a little time writing a program to do it.

    I personally have a program written to pull all the data from their site every so often. It takes about 40 minutes at a time for me.

    I agree that trying to do this directly in Excel might lead to frustration.
    Posted in: Magic General
  • posted a message on X Mana/ Mass Manipulation
    Please use card tags:

    Mass Manipulation

    If Wizards wanted X to be 1 they would have printed it that way and wouldn't have printed it with X at all.

    X denotes a variable which the player gets to choose the value of. If you want to steal 1 creatures/walkers, X=1. If you want to steal 4 creatures/walkers, X=4. You make the choice of what they value of X is when you cast it.

    Now, a quick clarification though: Manipulation has *two* X's in the mana cost and both need to be the same value. This value of X is also used for the text of the spell. So, if you want X to be 4, you declare X=4. Then, you add that in where you want to so now the Total cost of the spell is {4} + {4} (since there are 2 X's) + UUUU. In all, to steal 4 permanents you need to pay 8UUUU or 12 mana total. Your summary of "1 per X to steal 2 things" seems to have this backwards.
    Posted in: Magic Rulings
  • posted a message on Seven Secret Lairs in 2019
    Quote from FuneralofGod »
    How do we know which are foil and which aren't? And is anyone certain that the foiling process will be that of the FTV disaster?
    You can look at the product listings for each on the website here. They will say if they are foil or not.

    As to the foiling, I am not sure we actually know yet, though the lands didn't quite look like FtV foiling in the video.
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • posted a message on A million game study says shuffler is rigged
    Quote from Henrick »
    At this point I have no doubt that Arena is rigged to help some players have wins.
    - If people don't win, they won't play. If they don't play, there is no chance of making money with Arena. -

    Here are 3 game examples that happened to me THIS week...
    Game 1:
    I Mulligan twice to get two colors of land or duals etc. (ok, fine, this could happen)
    Next it takes me 5 draws to get a land (I started with 2 land. Ok, this could happen.)
    He has a Bloodthirsty Aerielist dealing damage. It is the ONLY WAY he can win the game at this point.
    I have 2 enchantments that give creatures Riot.
    I cast a Snarespinner which has Reach and when Riot is supposed to activate to give my choice of +1/+1 or Haste, it skips this and goes straight to combat phase. So no Riot. Opponent then wins the game because it was critical that I have those counters to kill his Aerielist.

    Game 2:
    The other player's Vraska didn't require them to sacrifice a permanent to draw a card... twice in one game. Fun.

    Game 3:
    Playing the instant Joust suddenly doesn't recognize that my Knight has First Strike.

    Honestly I'm kind of sick of this crap. I want my money back.
    So, your argument for the shuffler being rigged is stating 3 anecdotes that have nothing to do with the shuffler? And 1 of them (maybe 2) are just you misunderstanding the rules:

    1) The Snarespinner Riot interaction sounds like a bug. Bugs happen. Report it and move on.

    2) So, they drew a card without sacrificing something? Or, they didn't sac something but they also didn't draw a card? The former would be a bug. The latter is how the card works. The Sacrifice is a may but then they don't draw a card.

    3) First Strike (and Double Strike and Trample) don't work in "Fights". This worked exactly as the rules said it should which is exactly as it would have played out in paper if the players are following the rules.
    Posted in: MTG Arena
  • posted a message on Brain in a Jar + Teferi Time Ravler
    Please use card tags:

    Brain in a Jar
    Teferi, Time Raveler

    There are two different things at play here and it is important to understand both to understand how they interact with one another.

    First, Brain in a Jar. Brain in a Jar gives you permission to cast a spell during the resolution of the ability. You can tell this because there is no duration given (such as "this turn" or similar). So, you cast the spell as the ability is resolving or you don't cast it at all. This is important because this a time when *no* spells can be cast. Not even instants. Spells cannot be cast in the middle of another spell or ability is resolving unless that spell or ability explicitly gives you permission to do so.

    Also, and this is important for Teferi's ability, there is nothing in the rules that says you *can't* cast a Sorcery on an opponent's turn. The rules are not written this way. Instead, the rules are written to say when things *can* happen. Thus, the rules for casting a Sorcery are "when it is your main phase, the stack is empty, and you have priority". Brain in a Jar adds to this permission to make the permission for casting a Sorcery (for example): "[when it is your main phase, the stack is empty, and you have priority] or [when Brain in a Jar's ability is resolving]". This does not contradict or supersede the rules because it is simply adding to what the rules already allow to give you an additional moment you can do something.

    Now, on to Teferi. Teferi is different. Teferi explicitly says you *can't* do something ("can only" is the same thing as "can't"). This means he does introduce an actual restriction. This restriction is enforced on top of Brain in the Jar's ability because of rule 101.2:

    101.2. When a rule or effect allows or directs something to happen, and another effect states that it can't happen, the "can't" effect takes precedence.

    Because Teferi is a "can't" effect, he takes precedence and will prevent the spell from being cast via Brain in a Jar because Brain in a Jar is trying to make you cast the spell at a time when you can't normally cast a Sorcery. That is, when an ability is resolving.

    This also brings us into other cards, such as Cauldron Dance. This card has a built in restriction for when it can be cast so that restriction will also supersede the permission being granted by Brain in a Jar for the same reason Teferi does. It is telling you that you can't do something so you can't.

    Without Teferi, or an "on-card" restriction like Cauldron Dance, Brain does indeed let you cast something like Time Wipe on your opponent's turn because Brain in a Jar is giving you permission to do so and nothing else is taking that permission away.
    Posted in: Magic Rulings
  • posted a message on Secret Lair
    Yes, those are foil. 4 of the 7 are all foil while 3 are not. You can see on each product page at secretlair.wizards.com
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • posted a message on Concerning Face-Down Permanents
    Either you have it spot on or you are missing something. It is hard to tell without card examples.

    So far, just going over the rules, you seem to understand the rules themselves well enough but it is tough to say that you understand their applications. There are a number of things that can happen when dealing with face down permanents. Let's take 3 examples:

    Voidmage Prodigy
    Hooded Hydra
    Bane of the Living

    Now, to start with, you are correct that the act of turning something face up is a special action. It does not use the stack and cannot be responded to. Thus, for all 3 of these, no one can respond to wanting to turn them face up. You basically declare what you want to do, pay the cost, and it is done; it is face up.

    Now, for the rest of it. You will notice that nothing happens when Prodigy is turned face up. It has no abilities that care about turned face up so it is simply face up and sits there. Nothing more happens beyond it being turned face up.

    Hooded Hydra fits into the wording of the second rule you quoted. This is similar to something like Clone entering the battlefield. The effect that happens "as it is turned face up" is not a trigger; it is a replacement effect. And replacement effects cannot be responded to. You will notice in this particular case why that is important. If this would go onto the stack, the Hydra would die before the trigger would resolve since it is a 0/0. Being a replacement effect allows it to happen during the process of being turned face up and, thus, before State Based Actions are checked. It gets its counters before anyone can respond and it lives.

    Now, Bane of the Living doesn't have a replacement effect; it has a trigger. Notice the use of the word "When" ("Whenever" and "At" are the other two words that denote triggers). Again, turning the Bane face up cannot be responded to. However, that trigger acts like nearly every other trigger in the game in that it goes onto the stack. Since it goes onto the stack, it can be responded to. It will not resolve immediately and will give players a chance to buff their creatures or to sac them or whatever.
    Posted in: Magic Rulings
  • posted a message on Seven Secret Lairs in 2019
    I could get behind 5 of each Smile

    My argument was more about 1 of each being very overpriced. There are likely a number of things they could have done to make it worth more. I like your idea in theory though I wouldn't buy any with 1 foil and 4 nonfoil since I only want foils (I realize that is not everyone). This is also the reason I won't get the Bitterblossom. Perhaps 2 of each being foil and 2 or 3 of each being non foil might have worked.

    Part of my thought is that I won't buy any at this price point. I love the artwork on these and would have given serious consideration to buying them with 2 of each and easily would have picked up all 10 I could have picked up (and likely would have gotten as many of my friends to pick up some for me as well) if there were 3 of each. I am sure someone who is better at math and economics than I am can come up with the right number to sell the most and make the most money. As it is, this price has priced me out of it entirely where I will spend $0 on the lands whereas I could have spent $300 - $600 if there was just more value to the box.
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • posted a message on Seven Secret Lairs in 2019
    Quote from Blair Phoenix »
    Quote from Simto »
    Those basic lands are ******* amazing looking... can't believe you only get one of each for ******* $30
    They're snow lands. It's on par with how much you'd be spending on the open market, if not a bit less.
    That is a problem though.

    Wizards has a number of ways to go about rectifying the high prices of cards. They can do what they have said they have been doing and print cards they think people want or cards that fit with whatever set they are making but realize people who already have the cards don't want to lose value. This doesn't seem to work because it doesn't do anything. In order to really make things accessible, they need to print more copies or put the packs of cards at a reasonable price point. Something they are not willing to do. Plus, there are too many cards people want and not enough avenues to print them.

    Or, they can ignore the secondary market, and the value of people's collections entirely, and just print these supplemental sets to demand. No more limited print runs. No more high cost packs. They seem reluctant to do this to because they don't want people to lose focus of the "cheaper" format of Standard so getting reprint sets always command a premium. But this would arguably be a pretty decent route for accessibility.

    Or, they do what they have done here with these "Secret Lair" boxes: they print cards and price them based on the secondary market. That is, they have given us sets that are priced based on the individual cards' values on the secondary market. This is Wizards saying "we don't pay attention to the secondary market (wink, wink)". This is especially egregious with Bitterblossom as they are selling us a Single for lower than, but still close to, current market value. There is a reason this card is the only one included in that box.

    This is why I think arguing that these boxes are a "good deal" misses the point of people's complaints entirely. This product, if successful, creates a conflict of interest within Wizards. There will now be a reason not to reprint cards to make them accessible. They are better off *not* making things accessible so the prices jump. With this product, they could cease major reprints going forward. Instead, and the fetchlands are a good example for this right now, they could simply allow prices to skyrocket out of control and then come in with their own product for cheaper.

    If they neglect to reprint a Pioneer staple and it gets to $100 over the course of the next 3 years. And then they come out with a product that gives us a single, "special edition" copy of that card for $50. That is certainly a "good deal" but why is that card $100 to begin with? At what point do we no longer accept their excuse not to reprint as simply "we couldn't find room for it in a set" and start seeing it as "we wanted it to get high enough where we could make money selling that same card direct to players".

    Now, as this is the beginning of this product line, it is difficult to go too far down the rabbit hole on what they will do. This is only speculation but this opens the doors to some pretty scummy stuff Wizards could do.

    So, no, I don't think getting 5 foil basic lands is a deal since there should have been more than 2 reprints of snow basics in the last 20 years (and definitely should not have been in a limited, overpriced product). I don't believe getting a Single, Alt-Art Bitterblossom for $30 is a good thing just because the current version in $40.

    There is a way to do these products right. Releasing the basic land pack with 2 of each would have been more acceptable. 3 of each I think would have been the sweet spot. Perhaps more than that is giving a bit too much, but they are still basics that are only expensive because of scarcity. This product doesn't change that and only exacerbates it by setting an artificial floor on these lands right out of the gate.

    The kaleidoscope box is a good way to do this too. Overlord was $30+ before this box and they gave us a couple other good cards with it. It won't drastically reduce the buy in, but it does a lot to lower existing prices. Overloard is already down about 50% from where it started. That is a good thing for accessibility.

    We can enjoy these products for what they are and buy the ones we want to buy. Overall, while I don't feel any but two of them are worth it (and I am being very generous with the Cats one since the cards themselves are worth less than half what they are charging) others may like certain ones for different reasons. But the Basic Land box is the most damning of them all. There is nothing special about them and there is nothing that dictates that price beyond what the current market says because of lack of supply. These could have arguably been in a Holiday Gift Box and would make perfect sense (in NA anyway) as Winter = Snow. But Wizards chose to put them in this product, where people need to spend hundreds to get enough for a deck when they could have done so much more with them. If only they would truly ignore the secondary market like they want us to think they do.
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • posted a message on Secret Lair
    Have they confirmed these are all foils? Because, other than the lands, none of them look like they are foiled which means a foiled Bloodghast being $25 doesn't matter much if that isn't what we are getting.

    So far, the cats, Bitterblossom, and the Life From the Loam and Bloodghast boxes are pretty sweet if they come in foil. If not, then it is a hard pass. I probably should pass anyway but Bitterblossom and the Dredge one are still a good deal if they are foil. Since none of them are curled like the lands were, I am assuming they are not foil.

    Also, the land one is *****. I get that the current going rate for foil lands is at, or above, $10 each. But, as others have mentioned, most players don't need just 1 basic land which means it will still cost quite a bit to get the number needed for a deck (depending on how many basics you run). They should have done something else there and printed the lands in a set where people could actually get their hands on them for a decent price.
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • posted a message on Timing question with Aether Flash vs Flash
    It depends on whose turn it is (and yes, I realize it is not your turn) but whether its trigger resolves before it dies is irrelevant. It will trigger when it enters and so will Aether Flash. Both triggers go onto the stack at the same time so they go onto the stack in Active Player, Non Active Player (APNAP) order. Since it is not your turn, your trigger resolves first to give your Rider Deathtouch and Lifelink before the Paragon is killed.

    If it was your turn and you did this, your Paragon would die before its trigger resolves. However, as mentioned, it has already triggered. And getting rid of the source of an ability will not affect the ability or prevent it from resolving. So, it would still resolve even if the Paragon is not around anymore.
    Posted in: Magic Rulings
  • posted a message on Parallax Tide and Disenchant
    While the end result is correct, your summary, or terminology, is not. Activated abilities activate; triggered abilities trigger. Triggers can never activate and vice versa.

    You activate Tide so that ability goes onto the stack. You hold priority and activate it again and put that ability on the stack. You can do this 5 times. None of these are triggers.

    With those activated abilities on the stack, you Disenchant the Tide. Now, you have 1 trigger on the stack: the one making you return all exiled lands. As you said, there aren't any yet so nothing is returned when that trigger resolves. Now, all the activated abilities resolve to exile the targeted lands and they remain exiled for the rest of the game since nothing brings them back.
    Posted in: Magic Rulings
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