The False Roman Spirit

You are the Head Judge of a Modern GPT. In his precombat main phase, Anthemius casts Path to Exile on Numerian’s Snapcaster Mage, which he puts into his otherwise empty graveyard. Anthemius now animates his Gideon Jura and attacks with it and some creatures. Post combat, Anthemius casts and resolves Divination, draws 2 cards, then casts Vendilion Clique, putting a card from Numerian’s hand onto the bottom of his library.

Numerian untaps, draws a card, then activates his Moorland Haunt by exiling Snapcaster Mage from his graveyard. Numerian puts a 1/1 Spirit token onto the battlefield, casts Sword of Fire and Ice and equips the Spirit token. Then Anthemius suddenly realizes that the Snapcaster should have been exiled, so Numerian would never have been able to make a Spirit token.

They call for a Judge. After investigation, you decide that this was an honest mistake. What is/are the infraction(s), penaltie(s) and fix(es)?

Judges, feel free to discuss this scenario here!

View Answer

There is only one Game Rule Violation, and that is putting the Snapcaster into the graveyard instead of into exile. Since this is an effect controlled by Anthemius but executed by Numerian, they both receive a Warning for GRV. If you’re not sure about a detail like ”is this his graveyard or his exile zone“, just ask the players.

The situation is way too complicated to back up, so we leave everything as it is. Yes, that includes the Spirit token: Exiling a card from his graveyard and paying the mana cost for the activation of Moorland Haunt was perfectly legal and not something we should try to fix. If you were called before the activation, or maybe even during the activation but before resolution, you could have applied a partial fix by putting the Snapcaster into the correct zone; i.e. from the graveyard into exile.

Since the ability already has completely resolved, we are too late for doing that, so we either rewind everything or rewind nothing at all.