If I have Sanguine Bond on the battlefield, and I play Reverse the Sands, will the redistribution of life trigger Sanguine Bond if I choose to distribute less life to my opponent than he originally had?

ex. I have 10 life left, my opponent has 14 life left. I play RtS and distribute life totals so I end up with 23 life and my opponent with 1 life, would that be considered a "loss of life/life gain" situation?

  • Note that Sanguine Bond triggers when you gain life, NOT when your opponent loses life.
    – GendoIkari
    May 30, 2014 at 13:43

1 Answer 1


Yes, Sanguine will trigger, but you can't set his life total to 1.

Changing life totals is treated as gaining life or losing life to reach the specified life total[CR 118.5]. So that will trigger the bond in this case. (It wouldn't if you started at 14 and he started at 10.)

However, you've misunderstood what Reverse the Sands does. The specific gatherer ruling on this for the card is "You can't split up a life total when you redistribute it". You can only make your opponent's total 10 and yours 14 , or make no changes.

So you end up with the same life totals on different players, and then resolve any following effects. In this case he loses 4 and you gain 4, and then Sanguine triggers off your lifegain and he loses another 4. If you choose not to redistribute, Sanguine won't trigger.

  • The good news is that if he has more than twice as much life as you, you immediately win!
    – bwarner
    May 30, 2014 at 12:01
  • @bwarner Not if he can respond to the trigger and gain even more life.
    – deworde
    May 30, 2014 at 12:08
  • I guess it was the word: redestribute that threw me off. Why not just use the wording: exchange life totals?
    – Lund
    May 30, 2014 at 14:16
  • 1
    @user7268, An exchange is an A for B swap, but Reverse the Sands can manipulate the life of more than two players. Note that it's life totals being redistributed, not life points.
    – ikegami
    May 30, 2014 at 14:27
  • 2
    @deworde, Nope, see Tree of Redemption: "Exchange your life total with Tree of Redemption's toughness." Not only are neither of the things involved in the exchange permanents or spells, they're not the same kind of thing!
    – Brian S
    May 30, 2014 at 15:57

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