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I am not very au fait of how state based actions work, so I'd like to understand an interaction. Say I have Brindle Boar enchanted with Gift of Immortality. There are basically no simple ways (barring graveyard hate or Stifle-like effects) to prevent both permanents from returning?

I mean, if they target Gift or Boar with removal, I sacrifice the boar, but (this is the part I'm not sure) SBAs will send the Gift to the graveyard before the removal can hit it, right (and same if they target in response to my sacrificing the boar)?

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Well, the simplest way to prevent both permanent from returning is to wait for the enchanted creature to die, then kill it again while the Gift is still in the graveyard. Its trigger will then fizzle because it has nothing to be attached to. –  Alex P Oct 18 '13 at 4:29
    
My question is really about the second paragraph: whether or not it's possible to keep the enchantment from going into the graveyard in the first place (since that's the main relevant part for standard). –  Circeus Oct 18 '13 at 5:42
    
I wouldn't put a '?' after, "There are basically no simple ways (barring graveyard hate or Stifle-like effects) to prevent both permanents from returning?" It reads as if it was a question, not a statement of fact (an incorrect one at that). –  user1873 Oct 18 '13 at 6:19
    
@Circeus Out of curiosity, why do you feel 'that's the relevant part for Standard'? Can you describe a specific situation you're concerned about that you believe the provided answer and comments aren't covering? –  Steven Stadnicki Oct 18 '13 at 19:05
    
Well, in standard (I don't play the older formats), graveyard hate (e.g. Serene Remembrance or Rest in Peace) isn't played ATM, and Stifle is obviously no an issue (Viper's Kiss might be, but not in the scenario I offer up). I'm well aware of the "double removal" aspect, so the part I'm wondering about is whether enchantment removal can affect the resolution, and that's where SBA timing becomes involved and I get confused and unsure. –  Circeus Oct 18 '13 at 19:17
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1 Answer

Yes, SBAs will result in GoI going to the graveyard. Yes, there are simple ways to prevent both from returning.

State-Based Actions

If you sacrifice the boar before your opponent targets it (or the Aura enchanting it), then Gift of Immortality is attached to an object that no longer exists. Before any play receives priority, Gift of Immortality is placed in its owner's graveyard. Your opponent can no longer target Gift of Immortality on the battlefield, because it is no longer there.

If you sacrifice the boar in response to your opponent targeting it (or the Aura enchanting it), then Gift of Immortality will still be placed in the graveyard, because the object it was enchanting no longer exists. The spell that originally targeted it (or the boar) will be countered on resolution, because the boar and the aura will be new objects when they return to the battlefield.

116.2d State-based actions happen automatically when certain conditions are met. See rule 704. They’re dealt with before a player would receive priority. See rule 116.5.

303.4c If an Aura is enchanting an illegal object or player as defined by its enchant ability and other applicable effects, the object it was attached to no longer exists, or the player it was attached to has left the game, the Aura is put into its owner’s graveyard. (This is a state-based action. See rule 704.)

Playing Around Gift of Immortality

There are at least a few other ways besides graveyard removal and Stifle effects:

  • Use two removal spells: Gift of Immortality returns the Brindle boar to the battlefield after it is sent to the graveyard, but GoI doesn't return to the battlefield until the beginning of the next end step. You can use the first removal to force the sacrifice, and before the GoI returns, you can use the second removal to send it to the graveyard permanently.

400.7. An object that moves from one zone to another becomes a new object with no memory of, or relation to, its previous existence. There are seven exceptions to this rule: [...] 400.7e Abilities of Auras that trigger when the enchanted permanent leaves the battlefield can find the new object that Aura became in its owner’s graveyard if it was put into that graveyard at the same time the enchanted permanent left the battlefield. It can also find the new object that Aura became in its owner’s graveyard as a result of being put there as a state-based action for not being attached to a permanent. (See rule 704.5n.)

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Sorry, but although that does cover the other basic ways to keep the combo from working, those're completely irrelevant to my actual question (see my answer to AlexP's comment) –  Circeus Oct 18 '13 at 5:44
    
@user1873 actually - the end the turn effects can be used to prevent it coming back all together. it is returned by a delayed trigger, which must go on the stack, when the turn ends early all triggers and spells are exiled from the stack. this means you can end the turn above the trigger on the stack and prevent the GoI returning at all. It has triggered, and it doesnt say "each end step" –  Patters Oct 18 '13 at 7:55
    
If there is no end step in the turn and the ability is supposed to trigger at the beggining of the next end step, it will trigger as soon as the next end step begins, whether it's in the same turn or not. But you can end the turn during the end step when the abilities are already on the stack, which is a completely different situation (all the abilities and spells are removed from the stack at this point). –  dnLL Oct 18 '13 at 17:05
    
Thanks for confirming my hunch. I get my questions wasn't super clear, but I couldn't figure out a good, clear way to ask it. –  Circeus Oct 18 '13 at 19:20
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