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I would like to use Tortoise Formation to temporarily disable the effect of Ensnaring Bridge. My question therefore is: does that combo allow my creatures to attack, even if there are no cards in my hand?

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You're pretty much going to need to remove Ensnaring Bridge. Try bouncing it with Steel Sabotage or Master Transmuter. Or play it in a Doran deck with a lot of low-power/high-toughness creatures. – Alex P Oct 24 '11 at 0:12
Thanks for that amazing ideas! – IProblemFactory Oct 24 '11 at 18:18
up vote 7 down vote accepted

No, Tortoise Formation has no interaction with Ensnaring Bridge.

Shroud only prevents a creature from being the target of a spell or ability. When you're choosing targets for a spell or ability (which only happens for spells or abilities that specifically use the word "target"), you can't choose a creature with shroud as a target. That is the only thing shroud does. In particular, if the spell or ability does not use the word "target", then shroud has no effect.

Ensnaring Bridge's ability does not use the word "target", so playing Tortoise Formation will not allow your creatures to get around the Bridge's restriction.

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Technically, Shroud makes a permanent an illegal target for all spells and abilities. That is a difference to "you are unable to choose a permanent with Shroud as a target", because it means that if a permanent gains Shroud while a spell/ability targeting it is on the stack, that spell/ability can not act on that permanent when it resolves. – Hackworth Jan 2 '12 at 11:24

You can always use something like Lux Cannon to blow away your Ensnaring Bridge... but you should only do that when you are ready to attack, and know you'll win (or have a backup Ensnaring Bridge in your hand). I'd suggest you use something like Bottled Cloister instead (this will allow you to have a hand during your turn, but remove your hand during your opponents turns.)

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Wow, thanks for showing me "Bottled Cloister" card... however, there could be one problem - when opponent destroy it in his/her turn ;) – IProblemFactory Jan 2 '12 at 20:43

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