Magic: The Gathering is a collectible card game for 2 or more players, set in a variety of fantastical realms. The cards represent the player's resources and available spells and their interactions lead to an often high paced battle of wits.

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Why would you want to play with a deck bigger than 60 cards in MTG?

In Magic the Gathering, the decks are required to be no less than 60 cards, but can be larger. Since you can only have 4 of each card (except for basic lands), it seems you would want the limit size ...
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3answers
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In Magic, when can I tap my opponent's creatures to prevent them from attacking?

Whilst I haven't played Magic in a while, use of the stack was something that I always found a little confusing. When I first started out, our group could tap an opponents attacking creature after ...
32
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4answers
2k views

How can I improve my deck building skills?

I've been playing M:tG for nearly a decade now. I understand the rules very well, I've participated in a few draft tournaments, and I've built a few decks that I'm very proud of. Nonetheless, I seem ...
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15answers
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How much would it cost to get started with Magic: The Gathering?

I've heard a lot (of good things) about this game and I'm interested in exploring it; however, I'm slightly worried about the initial cash investment involved. About how much would it cost to get ...
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3answers
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Does newer card text on a Magic: The Gathering card override the old wording?

While going through the Gatherer database I noticed that the Alpha version of Icy Manipulator says, C: You may tap any land, creature, or artifact in play on either side. whereas the Tenth ...
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6answers
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How should I approach teaching Magic:The Gathering to a new player?

I've been playing MtG since Ice Age (mostly with friends) so I'm now sitting on a massive duffle bag of cards, plenty of decks, and quite some experience of the game. I want to teach the game to ...
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2answers
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How is Test of Faith resolved?

This is the scenario: he attacks with a 4/4 and I block with a 1/1. I cast Test of Faith on my 1/1. I say his creature dies because I block 3 damage and become a 4/4 killing him but he says that the ...
26
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4answers
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Can I cast a spell after a certain part of the stack is resolved in MTG?

Let's say my opponent plays a spell like Fireball. It is put on the stack. I cast a Snapcaster Mage in response. My opponent does nothing in return. The Snapcaster Mage resolves first and it seems ...
26
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3answers
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How can I tell when to take a mulligan in Magic?

Determining when to mulligan is a very important skill in magic. But how can I hone my abilities in that skill? Obviously if I had no/all land I'd probably want to mulligan as the opportunity to ...
25
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4answers
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Why is Homelands considered among the worst Magic expansions?

In various forums and articles, it is frequently mentioned that Homelands is one of the worst, if not the worst, Magic the Gathering expansions. Even on the main Wizards website, you will occasionally ...
25
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4answers
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What brand of card sleeves are most reliable for Magic the Gathering?

I use Dragon Shield, KMC and Ultra-Pro. The reviews and forums don't seem to have a consensus on the question, "Which brand is the best?" But have there been any quality control tests that show ...
24
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1answer
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In MTG, what happens when a player loses in multiplayer?

In Magic: The Gathering, the rules for a player losing in a multiplayer game are quite complex, so I'd like to try to understand them by example. I would be happy to ask each of these situations as a ...
22
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10answers
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Why Does Magic Use The “Paris Mulligan” Rule?

In the early days, Magic had crazy, subpar mulligan rules: you could shuffle up and draw a new 7 if your hand had no lands or all lands, otherwise you were out of luck. A long time ago the Paris ...
22
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2answers
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Is untapping my permanents during the untap step optional?

I was reading the untap step rule and got confused a bit. It says: 502.2. Second, the active player determines which permanents he or she controls will untap. Then he or she untaps them all ...
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3answers
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Land ratio vs mana curve

When choosing cards for a deck, one of the most important things to consider is the number of land you put in. The biggest issue is mana curve, of course. What shortcuts are best for determining the ...
22
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1answer
5k views

Why doesn't Undying trigger if a creature with +1/+1 counters dies from -1/-1 counters?

From the Dark Ascension FAQ: If a creature with undying that has a +1/+1 counter on it receives enough -1/-1 counters to cause it to be destroyed by lethal damage or put into its owner's graveyard ...
21
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7answers
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What are the names for Magic's different colour combinations?

For example, Esper refers to decks made up of White, Blue and Black cards. What are the names of the other colour combinations? In particular, how do we refer to a Red-White-Black deck?
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4answers
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What are good strategies against counterspell decks?

I'm currently honing a white-green tokens deck for Standard tournament play. I feel like I have a good handle on my game-plan for most of the other common archetypes, but I'm really stymied playing ...
20
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4answers
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Why is Skullclamp banned?

The following card is banned in current tournament formats: Equipped creature gets +1/-1. When equipped creature is put into a graveyard, draw two cards. Cast 1, equip 1 (artifact). ...
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6answers
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What exactly was so broken about Urza's Block?

I've often heard it said that the Urza Block (Urza's Saga, Urza's Journey, Urza's Destiny) was the most powerful, broken block in Magic history, with decks able to win on turn 1 or 2. I also saw it ...
20
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2answers
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Can non-creature permanents have +1/+1 counters?

Say I have a Blinkmoth Nexus and Steel Overseer out. I tap the Steel Overseer for his ability to put +1/+1 counters while my Blinkmoth is a creature, and it gains a counter. After my Blinkmoth goes ...
19
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2answers
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Why do people refer to Blue color as “U” in Magic the Gathering?

I often see people referring to Blue color mana as U. What is the reason for that? I know that Black starts with B as well but this is somewhat confusing. My guess is that u is the first letter which ...
19
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1answer
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How can I tell the difference between early Magic: The Gathering card editions?

I have a few Magic: The Gathering cards whose editions I'm having trouble identifying. They are obviously from either Alpha or Beta, since they have black borders and the same design as the Unlimited ...
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2answers
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In Magic, can an ability target a permanent that is being sacrificed as part of that ability's activation cost?

Suppose my opponent has a Darksteel Colossus in play, and I have Attrition and no creatures. During my turn I cast Act of Treason to gain control of the Colossus and attack with it. So far I haven't ...
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5answers
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Why is Bazaar of Baghdad supposedly such a good card?

I've been looking at the card Bazaar of Baghdad: (Land) Tap: Draw two cards, then discard three cards. Almost everywhere I've seen has it as over 200$, and most of the Arabian Nights set is much ...
18
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3answers
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How do you calculate the likelihood of drawing certain cards in your opening hand?

In Magic, at the start of the game, you draw 7 cards. How would you calculate the likelihood of drawing a specific card in your opening hand? For example, let's say I have a 60 card deck, and I'm ...
18
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6answers
3k views

Am I obligated to identify cards owned by an opponent?

Nathan controls Jeskai Infiltrator. His deck has green sleeves. Anthony controls three Mountains. His deck has blue sleeves. Anthony casts and resolves Act of Treason, gaining control of Infiltrator. ...
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3answers
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What are good strategies for booster drafts?

I know that doing a booster draft can be somewhat complicated, because to really be good you need to know a lot about the set you're drafting (or be really good at evaluating cards quickly) and to pay ...
18
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1answer
894 views

Can my opponent force me to play out a demonstrated loop?

We are at a Competitive REL tournament. With ten minutes left on the clock in game three, my opponent is at 5000 life. I control two Elite Arcanists. Each of them have Time Stop exiled. I also control ...
18
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2answers
552 views

What happens if both players have the ability to pump their creature an unlimited number of times?

Say that both players each had 2 Leaden Myr, 2 Myr Galvanizer, and a Nantuko Shade. (Or any other way to get unlimited mana, and a Nantuko Shade). Player 1 attacks with his Nantuko Shade, and player ...
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4answers
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Can someone explain the Damage on the Stack rule change?

I played Magic: The Gathering when Unlimited first came out, and quit shortly after Antiquities were released. About a month ago I started playing again. I was trying to find what the biggest ...
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2answers
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Can you counter a Land in Magic the Gathering?

I have always wondered this when I played Magic the Gathering, whether or not you can use a counter spell on a land. I know a land is technically a spell, but it is a special type, hence the ...
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3answers
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What is the converted mana cost of a spell with {X} when cast with the Miracle mechanic?

Say I topdeck Entreat the Angels and cast it for its miracle cost of XWW. But my opponent wants to counter it with a CMC-based effect, such as Spellstutter Sprite or Spell Burst. 202.3. The ...
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5answers
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What cards can be used to cheat Eldrazi creatures onto the table?

I'm constructing an Eldrazi based deck and I'm thinking about possible ways of getting one onto the table. What I already considered: Summoning Trap Polymorph Do you know any other cards like ...
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2answers
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Does Infect count as damage?

I have a card named Dissipation Field that reads, "Whenever a permanent deals damage to you, return it to its owner's hand." If my opponent attacks me with a creature with infect (i.e. Cystbearer) ...
16
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2answers
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Does an activated ability resolve if the card with the ability leaves the battlefield?

Player A taps Goblin Fireslinger targeting Player B; its "deals 1 damage to target player" ability is placed on the stack. Player B gets priority and responds with Snap, targeting Goblin Fireslinger. ...
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1answer
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In Magic: the Gathering, what is being gathered?

Why does Magic: The Gathering have "The Gathering" in its title? What is being "gathered"?
16
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2answers
672 views

Epic Experiment

My brother showed me Epic Experiment today. Now he says you can use it to put creatures in the graveyard and then fish them out with the free spells you get, because the free spells get put on the ...
16
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1answer
560 views

Can you fail to find a card in someone's hand?

If I cast Inquisition of Kozilek, and my only target is a Loxodon Smiter, do I have to make my opponent discard the Loxodon Smiter, or can I "fail to find" just as I would if i were searching my ...
16
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1answer
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Enchantment Legal only because of it's Effect. Remains on target?

This happened this weekend, and we were unsure how to resolve it. Opponent casts Progenitus. On my turn, I cast Polymorphist Jest. Then I cast, Darksteel Mutation targeting the Progenitus. ...
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5answers
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How do I manage double-faced cards in Innistrad (MTG) tournament play?

I read about the new mechanic in Innistrad, the upcoming MTG edition, called double-faced cards. These cards have two faces, and no standard Magic back. They have actual creatures on both sides. In ...
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1answer
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Do face-down creatures have “the same name” as each other?

My opponent has three face-down morphs on the battlefield. I play Sever the Bloodline targeting one of them. Do we exile all three because they all have the "same name"? Or do we exile just one ...
16
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1answer
284 views

Weird m “placeholder” card

A while ago a friend of mine pulled an interesting card in a pack of Urza's Legacy. The back was normal, but the front was solid black with a white M on it. I can't find the card right now, but I made ...
15
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5answers
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When land becomes creature can you kill it?

Some lands have an ability to become a creature, but they usually say they are still a land. If a land is a 3/3 creature, and a land, can you target and kill it with a Lightning Bolt to send it to the ...
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2answers
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How much time do I get to read a card before I counter it?

My friend told me I only get 5 seconds to say if I'm going to counter a card in Magic the Gathering, even if I tell him to wait. Is that true?
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What is a good strategy for using the Doomsday card?

Doomsday - The card text reads as follows: Pay half your life, rounded up: Put your graveyard on top of your library, then remove all but five cards of your library from the game. Put the rest on ...
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1answer
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What is the Power/Toughness of a */* when it is not on the battlefield?

If a creature has a P/T of * / *, but is not the battlefield, What is it's P/T with regards to effects that care about P/T such as Wild Pair and Varolz, the Scar-Striped. If I used Varolz, the ...
15
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2answers
862 views

Am I forced to choose targets for “may” abilities?

Lets say my opponent is attacking with Necropede and Phantasmal Dragon. There are no other creatures on the battlefield. I cast Doom Blade on the Necropede. Is my opponent forced to choose a target ...
15
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2answers
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If a permanent transforms into a creature, has it entered the battlefield?

I was playing a game last night with a guy who was playing a new Simic Gatecrash deck, and he claimed that if he made a land into a creature, it counted as entering the battlefield, thus triggering ...
15
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1answer
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Running a MTG draft without actually having to buy new boosters for each player every single time?

MTG drafting sounds like a really awesome way to play the game. I'd love to try it with some of my friends, but having to spent >5$ for each player every single time you want to play seems ...