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This question already has an answer here:

Cloudshift has

Exile target creature you control, then return that card to the battlefield under your control.

Are creatures already in my graveyard still under my control? Can I return one of them to the battlefield?

(No, I don't think that one answers my question. It's not "permanent", but "creature you control")

marked as duplicate by murgatroid99, ghoppe, Joe W, My Turn Yet, Michael Snook May 12 '15 at 0:58

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please ask a new question.

  • In the future, you should probably wait a little while before accepting an answer, so that you can evaluate it against other answers. – murgatroid99 May 11 '15 at 18:39
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    For the reason people can easily see this as a duplicate, see murgatroid's and diego's answers, which clarify that "creature" means "creature permanent." Unfortunately there are probably a half dozen possible duplicates for that half of your question as well... – Cascabel May 11 '15 at 20:42
  • Indeed, one distinction that trips people up is that there are never creatures in your graveyard. Only creature cards. The only place you find creatures is on the battlefield. – ghoppe May 11 '15 at 22:30
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Rule 109.2 says

If a spell or ability uses a description of an object that includes a card type or subtype, but doesn't include the word "card," "spell," "source," or "scheme," it means a permanent of that card type or subtype on the battlefield.

In its targetting clause, Cloudshift says "creature" without any of the specified words, so it's referring to a creature permanent on the battlefield.

In general, you don't control anything in the graveyard. Rule 109.4 says

Only objects on the stack or on the battlefield have a controller. Objects that are neither on the stack nor on the battlefield aren't controlled by any player.

Effects that deal with cards in the graveyard would refer to their owner.

  • Giving this one my +1, due to being the first correct answer, given that two are essentially the same now, and the other is just plain misleading. – Waterseas May 11 '15 at 19:05
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No. You only control creatures on the battlefield and creature spells on the stack. Anywhere else they are creature cards that you own, but do not control.

109.4. Only objects on the stack or on the battlefield have a controller. Objects that are neither on the stack nor on the battlefield aren't controlled by any player.

Though if you control the cards in your graveyard isn't really material, Otherworldly Journey still couldn't target a creature in a graveyard, this is because if a spell or ability doesn't have any sort of qualifier on it (like Creature spell, Land card) it means a permanent on the battlefield.

109.2 If a spell or ability uses a description of an object that includes a card type or subtype, but doesn't include the word "card," "spell," "source," or "scheme," it means a permanent of that card type or subtype on the battlefield.

  • This isn't really the right reasoning. It's true that you can only control stuff on the battlefield, but the "you control" clause on Cloudshift isn't the reason that you can only target stuff on the battlefield. – murgatroid99 May 11 '15 at 18:24
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    @murgatroid99 You're right, while this does answer the question in the title, it isn't exactly answering the one in the body of the question. – diego May 11 '15 at 18:30
  • Butt... you say you still own the creatures in your graveyard.. so Trostani Discordant returns cards from the graveyard? – JohanSellberg Dec 4 '18 at 15:26
  • @JohanSellberg No, because rule 109.2 applies to Trostani Discordant's ability as well. – Fax Aug 9 at 16:54

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