Silumgar’s Scorn with a Dragon on the Stack

Hi everyone, and welcome back to another week of rules tips! There’s still some Standard situations that come up, so that’s what we’re going to focus on this week. Today, we kick things off with Silumgar’s Scorn. You’re down to …
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Targeting troubles with Dromoka’s Command.

Dromoka's Command has a lot of the word "target" on it, and it can be tricky to know all the legal ways to cast it. Read and absorb some knowledge here!
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Thunderbreak Regent only triggers for Dragon permanents.

Thunderbreak Regent's ability is powerful, but don't get carried away. It only works while the Regent is on the battlefield, and it only triggers when an opponent targets one of your dragon permanents (on the battlefield). It doesn't work for dragon spells on the stack or dragon cards in the graveyard.
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Manifest and Delve (no, you can’t!)

Delve only functions while you're casting a spell, and turning a creature face-up via manifest isn't casting anything. So you can't benefit from delve when turning a manifested Gurmag Angler face up, for example.

Getting value with Humble Defector.

Humble Defector's ability doesn't give away control until it resolves, and the card draw is not dependent on giving away the creature... so if you find a way to untap him and reactivate the ability, or kill it before you draw, you can get extra value out of it!
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Soulfire Grand Master and Rebound (you choose).

Rebound and Soulfire Grand Master's ability are both replacement effects trying to replace the same event (spell going to graveyard as it resolves), so you get to choose which one to apply.
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You’ve got a graveyard stacked full of artifact creatures and a Scrap Mastery in your hand. Your opponent has a Grafdigger’s Cage on the battlefield. What happens? Will your spell exile all your good cards in your graveyard and leave you with nothing? Nope! Fortunately for you, Grafdigger’s Cage does not care about stuff coming from exile, which is the zone they are coming from upon the resolution of Scrap Mastery. Let’s break this down further:

  • Scrap Mastery starts to resolve
  • All artifacts in all graveyards are exiled
  • All artifacts on the battlefield are sacrificed
  • All artifacts that were placed into exile by Scrap Mastery are then put onto the battlefield under their owner’s control

The artifacts were moved on to the battlefield from exile rather than the graveyard. Thanks to this scenic detour into the Blind Eternities, you’ll get all your artifacts from the graveyard back into play- but so will your opponents. As for the artifacts you had in play before Scrap Mastery was cast, welp, C’est la vie. Hope it’s worth the trade!

Today’s Rules Tip was written by Daniel Clarke

 

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Reef Worm is an interesting and potentially frustrating card for your opponents to deal with. It doesn’t seem to matter how they kill it, it just keeps coming back bigger. Not all hope is lost for your opponent though! They could just as easily exile it or enchant it with a Faith’s Fetters. Since the key word in Reef Worm’s triggered ability is “dies”, any way of dealing with it SHORT of destroying it won’t trigger it. That includes exiling it or shuffling it into your opponent’s library, as well as bouncing it to their hand. This applies to the tokens as well, so a single Path to Exile, whether it be aimed at the original Worm or any of his progeny, ends the chain.

A neat trick with your Reef Worm and its tokens is providing it with a sacrifice outlet that ultimately benefits you and gets you a bigger token (a sacrifice still means the creature dies). For example, playing with a Barrin, Master Wizard and sacrificing your Worm in response to a Path to Exile. The Worm is sacrificed before the Path resolves, the opponent gets a creature bounced (or one of your own if you’re really tech) and you get a bigger token that you can subsequently sacrifice again to bounce yet another creature and get yet an even bigger token. Keep brewing the combos in Commander and remember that Reef Worm only works if it dies, not if it’s taken off the battlefield any other way!

Today’s Rules Tip was written by Daniel Clarke

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There has always been some confusion among players with how triggered abilities work. Sometimes the ability is so clearly written it just makes sense. Sometimes however, cards like Raving Dead use language that creates a slight amount of ambiguity as to when an effect takes place. Today we will discuss Raving Dead specifically, and hopefully leave you with a better understanding of the card and how triggered abilities work.

First thing we should always remember when handling triggered abilities is that the trigger event (always written with a “whenever,” “when,” or “at” before it) has to have happened in order for the ability to be placed on the stack. In Raving Dead’s case, it had to deal combat damage to the opponent. This should simplify the situation. Let’s have an example: Eric attacks Natalie, who is at 40 life, with Raving Dead. Natalie does not block and takes 2 damage. BOOM, trigger event has occurred. Since the damage happened, Natalie is now at 38 life. Next the ability is put on the top of the stack and then resolves. Uh-Oh, looks like Natalie is a 19 life. That’s quite a bit of damage for 2/6 to deal in a single combat phase!
Knowing is half the battle (and in this case, half the life total)!

Today’s Rules Tip was written by Daniel Clarke

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I hope everyone has been enjoying all the new Commander cards and the new abilities that have come with them. One of the more exciting of these new cards is Nahiri, The Lithomancer- She gets you value through tokens and Equipment and she is really fun to play. But here is a situation: You have a Batterskull in your hand and a Sword of Fire and Ice in your graveyard. You activate Nahiri’s second loyalty ability and say you want your Sword back. In response an opponent exiles your graveyard with a Relic of Progenitus. After the graveyard has been removed from the game and Nahiri’s ability starts to resolve, are you able to put your Batterskull into play? The simple answer is yes. Nahiri’s ability does not target, meaning no choice is made until the ability resolves. So despite your earlier comment, the choice of which Equipment to grab is not made until the ability is resolved.

Today’s Rules Tip was written by Daniel Clarke

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