Let's say I control Imoti, Celebrant of Bounty. I then cast Panglacial Wurm while searching my library. Panglacial Wurm will have cascade.

Since the library is kept in the same order while searching, I will know exactly what Panglacial Wurm will cascade into, and I will have access to this information before making the decision to cast Panglacial Wurm, is this correct?

2 Answers 2


No, you won't know what it cascades into.

Cascade is a triggered ability. This means that the ability triggers when you cast the Wurm, and then goes onto the stack once players receive priority. This only happens once you're done resolving whatever spell or ability let you search in the first place. At the end of the search, you are almost certainly instructed to shuffle your library (I don't know any searching effects that doesn't make you shuffle your library afterwards, but I don't know that none exist).

So here is the order of events:

  1. You search your library, cast the Wurm, the cascade triggers
  2. You finish your search, and shuffle your library as instructed
  3. The cascade is put on the stack
  4. Players have opportunities to cast instants and activate abilities
  5. The cascade resolves and you exile cards from the top of your library

So the search that let you play the Wurm does not let you know what it cascades into. You would have to do something like a scry in step 4 above in order to know that. But by then you have already decided to cast the Wurm.

  • re: any searching effects that doesn't make you shuffle your library - Doomsday I think might be the only card gatherer.wizards.com/pages/card/Details.aspx?multiverseid=15397. It's the only card that comes up with you search gatherer for "search your library" and not "shuffle"
    – DenisS
    Jan 13, 2021 at 23:18
  • 1
    You're almost right - except I think you and OP are missing an important detail: Cascade doesn't involve searching your library - you exile cards off the top of your library, one by one, until you find one that matches a critera, then put it into play, and add the exiled cards back to your deck in a random order. That's not searching, so the Wurm can't be played from your library. Apart from Imoti granting Cascade to the Wurm, the cards don't have any further bearing on one another. Jan 14, 2021 at 0:32
  • 4
    I crack my fetch. I search my library for the swamp I want. While searching, I cast Panglacial Wurm. Because of Imoti, it has Cascade. Because I'm in the middle of my search, I know the order of my deck and what cascade would hit if it triggers before the shuffle part of cracking the fetchland does. So, what happens? That is the question. You are correct, revealing PG Wurm during a cascade won't allow it to be cast, but that's not what's being asked about.
    – Mycroft
    Jan 14, 2021 at 2:08
  • Since the key to the answer is the sentence "this only happens once you're done resolving whatever spell or ability let you search", I think it would be useful to point to the Gatherer ruling that makes that explicit: "After you cast Panglacial Wurm, you pick up the search effect where you left off. When the search effect finishes resolving, the active player gets priority with Panglacial Wurm on the stack. Any abilities [such as PG Wurm's Cascade] that triggered when the spell was cast are put on the stack now."
    – Mycroft
    Jan 14, 2021 at 2:11
  • 4
    Might be worth adding that some tutors (e.g. Vampiric Tutor) put the searched card on the top of the library, in which case you will know what the Wurm cascades into.
    – Swimmer F
    Jan 15, 2021 at 2:07

The rules for Magic are pretty clear on how this works. Cascade is covered in rule 702.84, with the important part for answering the question in 702.84a (Emphasis mine):

702.84a Cascade is a triggered ability that functions only while the spell with cascade is on the stack. “Cascade” means “When you cast this spell, exile cards from the top of your library until you exile a nonland card whose converted mana cost is less than this spell’s converted mana cost. You may cast that card without paying its mana cost. Then put all cards exiled this way that weren’t cast on the bottom of your library in a random order.”

This shows what kind of ability Cascade is, triggered. The rules for triggered abilities are covered in 603, the important part for this question is 603.3 (Emphasis mine):

603.3 Once an ability has triggered, its controller puts it on the stack as an object that’s not a card the next time a player would receive priority. See rule 117, “Timing and Priority.” The ability becomes the topmost object on the stack. It has the text of the ability that created it, and no other characteristics. It remains on the stack until it’s countered, it resolves, a rule causes it to be removed from the stack, or an effect moves it elsewhere.

And the part in 117 that matters here:

117.3b The active player receives priority after a spell or ability (other than a mana ability) resolves.

Effects that cause a player to search their library are almost always a spell or ability, abilities like Fabled Passage or spells like Demonic Tutor. The active player receives priority only once that spell or ability fully resolves, which always includes shuffling the deck. This means that while the Cascade ability will trigger during the search, it won't be put onto the stack until after the deck is shuffled.

For some tutors, like Worldly Tutor or Vampiric Tutor, this means you will get to chose the spell you cascade into, since those tutors place the found card on top of the searched library, but for most search effects, you will shuffle the full library before the cascade is put on the stack or resolves.

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