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Artifacts, instants, sorcery, planeswalker, creature, and enchantment spells can all be stopped by counterspells right? So if I play Veil of Summer, and someone hits me with Didn't Say Please, would it cancel its effects (hexproof, spells can't be countered, and draw a card)?

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    Your opponent wouldn't hit you with Didn't Say Please, they would hit a spell you control. Are you saying that they hit Veil of Summer while it's on the stack? – Acccumulation Dec 31 '19 at 21:32
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You're right; everything that is a spell can be countered by Didn't Say Please. This excludes lands (they aren't spells and can't be countered)

305.1. A player who has priority may play a land card from their hand during a main phase of their turn when the stack is empty. Playing a land is a special action; it doesn’t use the stack (see rule 116). Rather, the player simply puts the land onto the battlefield. Since the land doesn’t go on the stack, it is never a spell, and players can’t respond to it with instants or activated abilities.

and activated or triggered abilities (which can be countered, but with other cards like Trickbind).

Veil of Summer's effects, including the 'spells can't be countered' part, only apply when they resolve; if it's on the stack, it's still vulnerable to Didn't Say Please.

Note that there are some spells which explicitly state they can't be countered, e.g. Obliterate, but there's an important difference in the wording: "This spell can't be countered." vs. "Spells you control can't be countered this turn.". "This spell" refers to the spell itself when it's on the stack; "Spells" does not.

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  • Do note that "can't be countered" just means that a counterspell (or ability) does not have effect on it when it resolves. It can still be targeted by said counterspell. If then for some reason the spell can be countered again before the counterspell resolves, it will be countered. – Simon Klaver Jan 15 at 7:15
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Can you counterspell everything?

No.

To counter something, one removes it from the stack.[CR 701.5a] As such, you will only receive instructions to counter things that can be on the stack. These are

  • Spells
  • Activated abilities on the stack
  • Triggered abilities on the stack

In general, all of those can be countered.

That said, I believe that every counterspell only target a proper subset of these, so any particular counterspell only counters some of the above. For example,

Furthermore, there are other restrictions in practice. Continuous effects (such as the one created by Veil of Summer) can restrict what can be countered. And other continuous effects (e.g. those created by Hexproof, Shroud and Protection) can restrict what can be targeted, indirectly reducing what can be countered.


Artifacts, instants, sorcery, planeswalker, creature, and enchantment spells can all be stopped by counterspells right?

Yes, subject to the limitations mentioned above.

A spell is a card on the stack, a copy of a spell (e.g. Doublecast), or a copy of a card on the stack (e.g. Isochron Scepter).[CR 112.1, .1a, .1b]

This includes Artifact spells, Instant spells, Creature spells, etc.

One of the first thing done as part of casting a card is to place it on the stack, so casting a card creates a spell (no matter what card types it has).

Note that once a spell leaves the stack it's no longer a spell, and thus can no longer be countered. That means that while a counterpell could be used on a Creature card on the stack, it couldn't be used on a Creature card on the battlefield.


(aside from lands)

Not really.

There's nothing that prevents someone from countering a Land spell. However, Land cards simply can't be found on the stack, so you will simply never encounter a Land spell.[CR 305.1, .9]

If a Land were to somehow find itself on the stack, it could be countered.


if I play Veil of Summer, and someone hits me with Didn't Say Please, would it cancel its effects (hexproof, spells can't be countered, and draw a card)?

Yes.

To counter a spell, one removes it from the stack.[CR 701.5a] This means it will never resolve, which means none of its effects will occur.


112.1. A spell is a card on the stack. As the first step of being cast (see rule 601, “Casting Spells”), the card becomes a spell and is moved to the top of the stack from the zone it was in, which is usually its owner’s hand. (See rule 405, “Stack.”) A spell remains on the stack as a spell until it resolves (see rule 608, “Resolving Spells and Abilities”), is countered (see rule 701.5), or otherwise leaves the stack. For more information, see section 6, “Spells, Abilities, and Effects.”

112.1a A copy of a spell is also a spell, even if it has no card associated with it. See rule 706.10.

112.1b Some effects allow a player to cast a copy of a card; if the player does, that copy is a spell as well. See rule 706.12.

305.1. A player who has priority may play a land card from their hand during a main phase of their turn when the stack is empty. Playing a land is a special action; it doesn’t use the stack (see rule 116). Rather, the player simply puts the land onto the battlefield. Since the land doesn’t go on the stack, it is never a spell, and players can’t respond to it with instants or activated abilities.

305.9. If an object is both a land and another card type, it can be played only as a land. It can’t be cast as a spell.

701.5a To counter a spell or ability means to cancel it, removing it from the stack. It doesn’t resolve and none of its effects occur. A countered spell is put into its owner’s graveyard.

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  • "A spell is a card on the stack, a copy of a card on the stack (e.g. Doublecast), or a copy of a card on the stack (e.g. Isochron Scepter)" What distinction are you drawing between the two kinds(?) of copies? – Karl Knechtel Jan 14 at 4:57
  • @Karl Knechtel, They're all spells, so there's no distinction from that point of view. But if you want to describe what things are spells, then one must list three things because no terminology covers two of them and nothing else. Specifically, you can't just say "a copy on the stack" because "copy" is not a thing in MTG; it's always a copy of something, and there's no something that means "card or spell". – ikegami Jan 14 at 6:33
  • I think you typo'd, then? One of the "copy of a card on the stack"s should be "copy of a spell on the stack"? – Karl Knechtel Jan 14 at 21:11
  • @KarlKnechtel, woops! Indeed. Good catch. Sorry for the confusion. Fixed. – ikegami Jan 14 at 22:21
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Artifacts, instants, sorcery, planeswalker, creature, and enchantment spells can all be stopped by counterspells right?

This is mostly true, but there are some exceptions. The general structure of the rules of Magic is that the game defines basic rules and then modifies them with exceptions. Most of the exceptions are caused by cards themselves as opposed to other rules within the rulebook. Here are some notable exceptions:

  • Some spells have rules text that explicitly say "This spell can't be countered" which means that counterspells are ineffective. Here are some nominally uncounterable spells.
  • Some spells have Split Second, which are functionally uncounterable by spell. This is because Split Second makes casting any spells (including counterspells) illegal.

    702.60a Split second is a static ability that functions only while the spell with split second is on the stack. “Split second” means “As long as this spell is on the stack, players can’t cast other spells or activate abilities that aren’t mana abilities.”


As an aside, there are even exceptions to the exceptions above, but those are out of scope for this answer.

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While I believe that ikegami gave a pretty comprehensive answer to this question, the card rulings on gatherer may also be of help in this case:

Veil of Summer has no effect until it resolves. It can be countered.

When you attempt to cast Veil of Summer, it goes on the stack. At this point, it can be countered. The spell itself does not have Hexproof.

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