Tournament Tuesday: Kalitas and Anointed Procession

EDIT: With the release of Ixalan, the rules regarding this interaction have changed. As of that set's release, effects like Anointed Procession will also apply if a replacement effect  (such as Kalitas' effect) is creating tokens, no matter why. Even if Kalitas' ability is replacing a state-based action rather than the effect of a spell or ability, Procession will still apply. The original post below will remain for posterity, but it is no longer applicable. Buckle up, because today's

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Hapatra and Wither: Who’s Putting These Counters?

Welcome back! Today's topic will be the new card, and how she works. On the surface, pretty simply: Whenever you put some -1/-1 counters on a creature, you get a 1/1 deathtouching Snake as a bonus. That's fairly simple with effects like or , which are effects that you control telling you "Hey, put a counter on that thing". That'll trigger Hapatra and grow your Ophiological family. You also only get one Snake per creature you're shrinking; if you were to put 10 -1/-1 counters on a single creature,

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Aether Revolt Prerelease Week! Revolution! (May or may not be televised)

Good morning and welcome back to the Rules Tips Blog! We all hope you had a wonderful holiday season, and we're back in action, starting with our Prerelease Week for Aether Revolt! Every day this week we'll be going over things you'd like to know for the event, from covering the new mechanics, to refreshers on the old, to logistics on what to expect in general. Today we're starting with Revolution, the new mechanic the Renegades have at their disposal. Revolt isn't a keyword- it's an ability word,

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Playing the Panharmonicon

Welcome back to the Rules Tip Blog! Keeping the Kaladesh train rolling, today we'll be discussing 's big brother: ! Panharmonicon likes to double up some of your triggered abilities; specifically, any that fire off of an artifact or creature entering the battlefield. So what does that work on? Would it make your come down with twice the counters, or make your harder to transform? The answer to both of those is "no"; those cards have replacement effects which modify the way they enter the battlefield

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Setting A Life Total

Welcome back to the Rules Tip Blog! Today we'll be covering effects that set a life total to a specific number. Right now in Standard we've got a few cards that do this, such as and . When a life total is set to a specific number, most people are just going to change their dice, or scribble out the old number and write in a new one- but technically, the player gains or loses however much life they need to GET to that point. If an effect says you can't gain life, Providence isn't going to do anything.

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Emrakul and Controlling Another Player

Welcome back! Eldritch Moon gave us a lot of scary colorless cards, the scariest of which is . Emrakul is the newest in the line of cards that let you control another player during their turn (colloquially called "" effects, after the first such card printed in Mirrodin block!). While it hasn't been that long since we had in Standard, it's much more likely that you'll get an Emrakul pointed at you than a Worst Fears, so let's go over what can and can't be done while you're controlling another player. To

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All About Tree of Perdition

For today's Rules Tips, we'll be covering , the anti-backwards sibling of . Like Tree of Redemption, Perdition is a 0/13 Defender for 4 mana with a nifty ability that trades life totals for toughness. Where Redemption swapped its toughness with YOUR life total, Perdition (being black and spooky and all) swaps with an OPPONENT'S life total! So what does that mean? Well, the majority of the time it's simple; as that ability resolves, we simply note what your opponent's life total is, and what Tree's

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Prerelease Primer Week: Bolster

Good morning, and Happy 2015! We're beginning our blog posts this year with a Primer for this weekend's Fate Reforged prereleases! Over the next few days we'll be covering the new mechanics of the set, so you know what to expect at the prerelease. Today we're starting with the Abzan's new mechanic: Bolster. As you may remember, the Abzan are all about enduring in their desert fortresses, as shown by their original mechanic of Outlast. The Abzan of the past are similar- their Bolster mechanic also

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Make it Count(ers): Why Not All +1/+1 Effects Are Counters

As we've probably learned over the years, cards generally do exactly what their Gatherer texts say. But some people still get confused. A major thing that I've seen trip people up is confusion about counters. Some people think that a static +1/+1 bonus (like from , or ) also counts as a counter. But that's not true. There's only a counter involved if the card says to put a counter on it. Just a general bonus from a card doesn't mean that you're putting any counters on the card. For instance, if

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Mutilate’s -X/-X won’t apply to creatures that enter later in the same turn.

When a resolving effect modifies the characteristics of objects on the battlefield (such as power/toughness), the permanents that will be affected are "locked in" as the spell/ability resolves. So when you cast , it applies -X/-X to all creatures currently on the battlefield as the spell resolves, and that effect will last until the end of this turn for those specific creatures. For example, your opponent controls a and a (with no counters), and you cast Mutilate with 4 swamps. Those creatures

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