Class 8 – Answers

Last updated: 02 August 2017

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  1. Antoine controls an untapped Trinisphere and casts a Gatekeeper of Malakir with kicker. How much does Antoine have to pay to cast the Gatekeeper?

Three black mana. When the total cost is determined, it takes into consideration the kicker cost that will be paid; therefore, Trinisphere’s effect doesn’t apply as the total cost to cast it is not less than 3.


  1. Nancy controls a face down Willbender, Agnes casts Sudden Shock targeting the face down creature. Can Nancy turn Willbender face up? If she can, can she change the target of Sudden Shock?

Yes and yes. If a spell with split second is on the stack, like Sudden Shock, Nancy can still respond by turning Willbender face up and targeting that spell with the trigger. This is because split second only stops players from casting spells or activating abilities, while turning a creature face up is a special action that doesn’t use the stack.


  1. Alex controls a Polukranos, World Eater; he activates its ability paying 4G. Once the ability resolves, Polukranos’ second ability triggers and Alex chooses to deal 1 point of damage to each of two 1/1 Goblin tokens that Noemi controls. How much damage will each token be dealt if Noemi casts a Doom Blade targeting the hydra in response? How much damage is the other token dealt if one of the tokens is sacrificed in response to the triggered ability?

Each of the tokens is dealt one point of damage, this was defined when the triggered ability was placed in the stack. If the source is destroyed in response, the assigned damage is still dealt.

For the same reason, the damage doesn’t change if upon the resolution of the ability, one of the targets is illegal. Like this case, where one of the targets leaves the battlefield and becomes illegal.


  1. Anson and Arthur are in the same two-headed giant team. Anson controls a Noble Hierarch and Arthur attacks with a Glory Seeker, the only attacking creature. How much damage does the Glory Seeker deal?

Two damage. Exalted only triggers for creatures under a player’s control, not his/her teammates.


  1. Adams casts a Shriekmaw for its evoke cost. When it enters the battlefield and the triggered abilities are in the stack, Nadine casts Dominate targeting Shriekmaw. What happens when the objects in the stack resolve?

When Dominate resolves, Nadine gains control of Shriekmaw. Adam still controls both of the triggered abilities. He can destroy the nonblack, nonartifact creature that was targeted when this ability was placed in the stack. When the second ability resolves, the Shriekmaw is sacrificed. Evoke specifies that the creature is sacrificed, not that the player who controls the ability has to sacrifice it, so Shriekmaw is sacrificed regardless of its current controller.


  1. Alexander has 4 Forests and 1 Wild Cantor. What is the maximum value for X if Alexander casts Chord of Calling?

Two. Alexander can sacrifice Wild Cantor using its ability or tap it because of convoke to pay for 1 mana, but not both. Mana abilities must be activated before paying costs. If he activates the ability of the Cantor, it will not be on the battlefield to tap for convoke.


  1. Adam casts Sins of the Past targeting Whispers of the Muse. Can he pay the buyback cost of Whispers of the Muse? If he can, how much does he pay and what happens when it resolves?

He can pay it because buyback is an additional cost. This additional cost can be added to the alternative cost of not paying its mana cost. So he would pay 5.

 When Whispers of the Muse resolves, two replacement effects will try to affect where the card goes, Adam gets to choose which effect to apply.


  1. Ana has a Hallowed Fountain, a Stomping Ground, a Swamp and an Unknown Shores. With an untapped Trinisphere on the battlefield, is it possible to cast Engineered Explosives in such a way that it enters the battlefield with 1 counter?

No, she can’t. Trinisphere will force her to pay at least 3 mana to cast any spell. If she wishes to cast Engineered Explosives with X=1, she would need to pay 3 mana of the same color. She can’t produce 3 mana of one single color, the most she could achieve is 2 mana of one color and 1 mana of another color or colorless. The lowest number that X can have under this scenario is 2.


  1. Can Heather activate the cycling ability of Secluded Steppe while the card is in her graveyard?

No, she can’t. To discard means to put a card from the hand in the graveyard, hence, cycling can only be activated from the hand.


  1. Natalie controls an Iona, Shield of Emeria naming red. Can her opponent cast an Akroma, Angel of Fury for its morph cost? Can it be cast normally for its mana cost?

It can be cast for its morph cost as it would be put in the stack as a colorless spell among other characteristics.

The angel can’t be cast normally for its mana cost because Iona’s ability doesn’t allow this action to take place.


  1. Agatha uses Anathemancer’s unearth ability. Then she casts Restoration Angel targeting Anathemancer. What happens next?

Anathemancer will be exiled and then returned to the battlefield, the corresponding abilities trigger.

Unearth reads that the card is exiled if it leaves the battlefield, since the angel’s ability also exiles the card, there is no conflict determining where it goes and then it returns to the battlefield.

  1. During your first main phase you cast Bring to Light paying 3 white mana, 1 green mana and 1 blue mana. Upon the spell’s resolution, you look for Encircling Fissure, exile it, shuffle your library and cast it. Could you do it for its awaken cost?

No you can’t. Bring to Light allows you to cast the exiled card without paying its mana cost. Awaken is an alternative cost thus it can’t be chosen. Additional costs however, could be paid.


  1. During one of your main phases, you cast Abbot of Keral Keep. When its triggered ability resolves, you exile Lightning Berserker. Can you cast it for its dash cost?

Yes. Abbot’s ability allows the card to be played from exile without restrictions. All the steps to cast a spell are followed as usual, including choosing to pay for alternative costs during the process.


  1. You have a Shambling Vent that was previously targeted by Ondu Rising’s awaken ability. Enumerate Shambling Vent’s characteristics before and after activating its second ability.

Without activating:

Name – Shambling Vent

Mana cost – none


Land Creature – Elemental

It has all the written text, both activated abilities, and haste

P/T – (0)+4/(0)+4 = 4/4


Name – Shambling Vent

Mana cost – none

Black and White

Land Creature – Elemental

It has all the written text, both activated abilities, haste, and lifelink

P/T – (2)+4/(3)+4 = 6/7


  1. You control two Sabertooth Outrider. During the declare attackers step, you confirm that both creatures will be attacking so both triggered abilities are placed in the stack. In response to the triggered abilities, your opponent kills one of your creatures with a Go for the Throat. What happens when the abilities resolve?

During resolution, each of them will verify that Formidable’s requirement is fulfilled. Since this isn’t true, none of the abilities has an effect.


  1. You control a Shaman of Forgotten Ways, a Honor of the Pure and 3 white 1/1 Spirit token creatures with flying. Your opponent controls 2 Insectile Aberration. You activate the Shaman’s formidable ability during your first main phase. Your opponent casts Cyclonic Rift in response, paying its overload cost, it resolves. What happens when the Shaman’s ability resolves?

The Shaman’s ability only checks if the formidable condition is fulfilled when it is going to be activated. The ability will resolve normally and since your opponent controls 2 creatures, his life total will become 2.

On the other hand, you will not control any creature, so your life total will become 0. The next time a player would receive priority, you’ll lose the game when state based actions are performed.


  1. You control a Narset Transcendent and a Jace, Telepath Unbound. You activate Narset’s -2 ability so that your next instant or sorcery spell that you cast from your hand has rebound. When the ability resolves, you activate Jace’s -3 ability targeting a Scatter to the Winds in your graveyard. Will Scatter to the Winds gain rebound? Can you cast it for its awaken cost?

No, the spell will not be cast from your hand so it doesn’t gain rebound.

You can choose to cast the card for its awaken cost since Jace’s ability allows you to cast the card from the graveyard with no further instructions and paying its costs, thus you can choose an alternative cost to play it.


  1. You control Kitchen Finks and Birds of Paradise. You cast Abzan Advantage targeting your opponent and declaring that you will bolster 1 the Birds of Paradise. Your opponent activates Anaba Shaman’s ability targeting Birds of Paradise in response, dealing lethal damage. Can you bolster Kitchen Finks?

Yes. Bolster makes you choose the creature when it resolves, it doesn’t target. If you made a selection before, you must keep it unless your opponent responds.


  1. You cast Bloodbraid Elf. When you are resolving its cascade, the first nonland card that costs less than the elf after exiling 5 cards, is an instant card that you don’t want to cast. What happens?

You don’t have to cast it. Cascade allows you to choose to cast it or not. If you choose not to cast it, the card will go to the bottom of the library in random order with the rest of the cards exiled this way.


  1. Albert declares that he attacks with an Inkmoth Nexus, which has become a creature during his first main phase, and he also attacks with a Blackcleave Goblin. Nigel casts Chord of Calling with X=2 and as he resolves the spell, he reveals a Melira, Sylvok Outcast and puts it on the battlefield. What happens with damage dealt by Inkmoth Nexus and Blackcleave Goblin? What happens if Albert activates Nexus’ ability again?


Both creatures assign normal combat damage because they lose infect due to Melira’s effect. This change occurs in layer 6. In the case of the Nexus, there are 2 effects applying on the same layer, its own ability that grants the land infect and Melira’s ability which causes it to lose infect. The timestamp determines which effect prevails, in this case, Melira’s effect has a more recent timestamp, and thus it prevails.

If Albert activates the Nexus’ ability again, there will be 3 effects applying on layer 6 for the land. Timestamp will determine which effect prevails, just like the first scenario. First, the creature gains flying and infect because of the initial activation of its ability, then it loses infect because Melira’s effect has a more recent timestamp. Finally it gains infect and flying again because of the activation of its ability for the second time, this has the latest timestamp of the effects. When it makes damage, it assigns it but Melira’s effect doesn’t permit its controller having poison counters or his/her creatures having -1/-1 counters on them, so even though it assigns infect damage, the outcome is that poison counters are not gained by Nigel; if the creature had lifelink for example, Albert would gain life even if poison counters are not gained by Nigel, because the Nexus is dealing damage.


  1. You control a Zada, Hedron Grinder, two Monastery Swiftspear and one Giant Solifuge. During your first main phase, you cast Titan’s Strength targeting Zada, triggering its ability. How does the stack look like? How will scrying resolve? How many times does prowess triggers?

The triggered ability from Zada and the prowess ability from each of the Swiftspears will be placed in the stack, on top of Titan’s Strength in the order of your choice, because they trigger at the same time. When Zada’s ability resolves, it will place 2 copies of Titan’s Strength on top of the stack; one for each of the Swiftspears, the spell can’t target the Solifuge because it has shroud, therefore, no copy is created for it. The copies will resolve one by one. Scrying 1 for each one of them just like text instructs. Prowess only triggers once for each Swiftspear because the copies were not cast, thus only the original Titan’s Strength triggers it.


  1. Antony controls Spellskite and Arcbound Ravager. His opponent casts Electrolyze targeting both creatures. Can Antony activate Spellskite’s ability to redirect both points of damage to Spellskite? Would something change if instead of Electrolyze, his opponents casts Kolaghan’s Command choosing to make 2 points of damage and to destroy an artifact? What if it were Arc Trail?

Electrolyze was placed in the stack as a spell with 2 targets, it is possible to activate Spellskite’s ability but it will do nothing when the spell resolves. This is because it would change the amount of targets that Electrolyze had in the stack and that is illegal. There is a second restriction that affects this case, one spell or ability can’t choose for a target an object more than once for each instance of “target” in its text.

 Kolaghan’s Command can be redirected; this is because each of its effects requires a target. Spellskite can be selected as target for each of the two instances of “target”; it is an artifact and a creature.

Arc Trail has also two instances of “target” in its text, but the card comes with a restriction, it says “another target creature” for its second target; Spellskite’s ability can be activated but it will have no effect when the spell resolves.


  1. Abdul controls Slippery Bogle enchanted by 2 Rancor. He casts Ethereal Armor targeting the Bogle. Nashif activates Spellskite’s ability to redirect the Armor in response. What happens?

When Spellskite’s ability resolves, it will redirect the target from Ethereal Armor to itself; auras have a target when they are cast. Next, the aura will resolve enchanting Spellskite and making it a 3/7 creature with first strike. This is because the controller of Ethereal Armor is still Abdul and he controls 3 enchantments, the benefits of the armor depend on the aura’s controller, not the creature it enchants’ controller.