When my friend has totem armor on a creature and I use Anger of the Gods, what happens? They are both replacement effects but which is applied first?

1 Answer 1


The creature will not die or be exiled, and instead the aura with Totem Armor will be destroyed.

Anger of the Gods says

Anger of the Gods deals 3 damage to each creature. If a creature dealt damage this way would die this turn, exile it instead.

And Totem Armor is an ability defined in rule 702.88a:

Totem armor is a static ability that appears on some Auras. “Totem armor” means “If enchanted permanent would be destroyed, instead remove all damage marked on it and destroy this Aura.”

Importantly, Anger of the Gods replaces a creature dying, and Totem Armor replaces a creature being destroyed. These are very similar, but not the same. Dying is defined in rule 700.4:

The term dies means “is put into a graveyard from the battlefield.”

And Destroy is a keyword action defined in rule 701.6a:

To destroy a permanent, move it from the battlefield to its owner’s graveyard.

In other words, destruction is an action that causes a permanent to go to the graveyard, and dying is the event of a permanent moving to the graveyard. By my reading, this means that destruction causes dying, so destruction happens first Therefore, the Totem Armor replacement would apply first and save the creature, and we never get to the point where the creature would die and the Anger of the Gods replacement would apply.

  • 1
    You should probably split that into 2 answers so people can up/downvote separately, since the answers are mutually exclusive.
    – Hackworth
    May 7, 2016 at 0:06
  • Surely the first version is correct. If the second were, there'd be other weird things like Anger of the Gods optionally being able to exile a creature with a regeneration shield, right?
    – Cascabel
    May 7, 2016 at 7:14
  • You two are probably right. I've removed the "alternate interpretation" section.
    – murgatroid99
    May 7, 2016 at 16:48

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .