Questions tagged [magic-the-gathering]

Magic: The Gathering is a collectible card game for 2 or more players, set in a variety of fantastical realms. Players take on the role of a powerful wizard and duel in a battle of wits, using cards that represent resources such as creatures, objects, spells and enchantments.

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What is "summoning sickness" and how does it affect my creatures?

Note: this is intended to be a canonical question about summoning sickness. "Summoning sickness", broadly, is the rule that stops you from attacking or paying {T} costs with a creature that you just ...
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29 votes
4 answers
40k views

In plain English, how does casting spells and using creature abilities work with the stack and priority?

I'm a relatively new player to Magic: the Gathering. I was reading the expanded rules to try to understand exactly when it's okay to cast instants (e.g. Cancel) and use some abilities (e.g. Goblin ...
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14 votes
2 answers
3k views

Which spells or abilities are affected by things that care about targeting?

Note: this is intended to be a canonical question about whether or not a spell or ability targets so there are multiple sub-questions. Can Hexproof or Shroud save my creature from Wrath of God? What ...
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6 votes
2 answers
2k views

Can I pay two different costs with the same payment?

Say I have a Zombie token, Viscera Seer, and Altar of Dementia on the battlefield. Can I sacrifice the Zombie token to activate both the Altar's and Seer's abilities? Similarly, if I have one card in ...
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56 votes
2 answers
72k views

In MTG, what happens when a player loses in multiplayer?

In Magic: The Gathering, the rules for a player losing in a multiplayer game are quite complex, so I'd like to try to understand them by example. I would be happy to ask each of these situations as a ...
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38 votes
3 answers
93k views

Does an ability resolve if the source of the ability leaves the battlefield?

Player A taps Goblin Fireslinger targeting Player B; its "deals 1 damage to target player" ability is placed on the stack. Player B gets priority and responds with Snap, targeting Goblin ...
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15 votes
3 answers
30k views

Are +1/+1 counters different from +1/+1 effects?

Is a +1/+1 counter I get from, say Unleash or Undying different than +1/+1 from something like Spear of Heliod or Master of Waves?
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24 votes
4 answers
38k views

If a blocking creature leaves the battlefield, is the attacker still blocked, or will it damage the opponent?

Suppose Player 1 has a Dragon on the table and Unsummon in hand, while Player 2 has two Spiders on the table. Player 1 chooses to attack with the Dragon and Player 2 chooses to block with one of the ...
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34 votes
1 answer
41k views

What order do triggered abilities happen in if multiple things trigger at the same time?

I had several humans on the battlefield. On turn three, I played Triumph of Ferocity. On turn four, I played Descendants' Path. On turn five, during my upkeep, this question came up. At this point,...
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18 votes
1 answer
1k views

How does having multiple permanents with the same name affect those permanents' abilities?

Many abilities in MTG use a permanent's name in the ability. Does this mean that if I have 2 copies of that permanent, the ability will affect both permanents? Activated ability example: Vector Asp - ...
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8 votes
2 answers
19k views

Can you claim a Double Sacrifice Bonus? [duplicate]

Two very closely related questions: If a card has two different "Sacrifice this creature for X" abilities on it, does sacrificing it give both benefits? Likewise, if a card requires a creature to be ...
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21 votes
1 answer
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What happens when a creature with "Whenever a creature dies" dies simultaneously with multiple other creatures?

Marchesa, the Black Rose has the following ability: Whenever a creature you control with a +1/+1 counter on it dies, return that card to the battlefield under your control at the beginning of the ...
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23 votes
2 answers
18k views

If a permanent turns into a(nother) creature, has it entered the battlefield?

I was playing a game last night with a guy who was playing a new Simic Gatecrash deck, and he claimed that if he made a land into a creature, it counted as entering the battlefield, thus triggering ...
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11 votes
4 answers
44k views

What does protection from [quality] do?

Example 1) Let's say I have some random creature with protection from white, and my opponent plays Day of Judgment, a white card with the effect "Destroy all creatures." Can my creature with ...
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22 votes
2 answers
50k views

Does 'fight' involve combat?

The text for Ulvenwald Tracker says: {1}{G}, {T} : Target creature you control fights another target creature. (Each deals damage equal to its power to the other.) Does this have anything to do with ...
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18 votes
4 answers
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How can I tell which cards or sets are currently legal in various formats?

I haven't played Magic: the Gathering since the days of Onslaught and Mirrodin, and I would like to try to catch back up. Since all my cards are quite dated now, I may be more interested in formats ...
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8 votes
1 answer
6k views

What happens if a target for removal becomes ineligible after a card has been cast?

When you have a card like Complete Disregard which reads "Exile Target Creature with power 3 or less", as I understand it, it becomes untargetable if the opponent's creature power increases ...
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18 votes
4 answers
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Where can I find a chart or diagram explaining Magic's turn structure?

I'm looking for a turn structure diagram for Magic the Gathering to use for teaching new players. There is a lot of information to keep track of in the turn: there is everything from the fact that ...
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17 votes
2 answers
1k views

Can I cast a spell while another spell or ability is resolving?

My opponent has a Sorin, Lord of Innistrad with scads of loyalty. I've got a Gideon Jura and a Nihil Spellbomb on the battlefield. He activates Sorin's "ultimate" ability, targeting Gideon. ...
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52 votes
1 answer
228k views

How can I tell the difference between early Magic: The Gathering card editions?

I have a few Magic: The Gathering cards whose editions I'm having trouble identifying. They are obviously from either Alpha or Beta, since they have black borders and the same design as the Unlimited ...
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  • 523
23 votes
3 answers
6k views

What is the difference between lands and mana?

What is the relationship between lands and mana in Magic and what do each of them do? A good answer should especially include how a new player should think about them. Note: This is an attempt to ...
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23 votes
2 answers
22k views

Do creatures that enter the battlefield at the same time see each other enter?

Let's say I have Goldnight Commander on the board. He is a 2/2 that says: Whenever another creature enters the battlefield under your control, creatures you control get +1/+1 until end of turn. I ...
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13 votes
1 answer
43k views

Can you play older versions of cards in standard?

Say, for example, you have a card that is still legal in standard but the version you have of it comes from a set that has since been rotated out. Can you still play the version from your older set?
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9 votes
2 answers
35k views

Cards entering the battlefield simultaneously and "Enter the Battlefield" effects [duplicate]

I was playing modern with the owner of a shop. He played a Scapeshift which he used to bring in 7 lands: 5 basic mountains and 2 Valakut, the Molten Pinnacle cards. He then claimed that each Valakut ...
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52 votes
3 answers
129k views

How do you calculate the likelihood of drawing certain cards in your opening hand?

In Magic, at the start of the game, you draw 7 cards. How would you calculate the likelihood of drawing a specific card in your opening hand? For example, let's say I have a 60 card deck, and I'm ...
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36 votes
5 answers
107k views

Can instants be played after I decide not to block?

My friend has a green Infect deck. When he declares a creature to attack and I allow it to go through unblocked, he suddenly plays all these Instants that 'pump' the creature up, and because of Infect,...
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  • 361
14 votes
3 answers
33k views

Destroying a Planewalker before its ability is used

Say my opponent plays a planeswalker during their first main phase. I have a Hero's Downfall or some other effect that will kill it after it is already in play, but before they use any of its ...
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27 votes
4 answers
12k views

What are good strategies for booster drafts?

I know that doing a booster draft can be somewhat complicated, because to really be good you need to know a lot about the set you're drafting (or be really good at evaluating cards quickly) and to pay ...
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14 votes
2 answers
41k views

What are the differences between combat damage, direct damage, and loss of life?

From reading the rules it would appear there are two kinds of damage and then straight loss of life: 118.3 If an effect causes a player to gain or lose life, that player's life total is adjusted ...
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11 votes
1 answer
39k views

Can I kill an indestructible creature with -X/-X and sufficient damage marked on it?

Can I hit a 4/4 indestructible creature with a Lightning Bolt (3 damage) and give it -1/-1 with Tragic Slip to kill it? (Does it matter which way around I cast those?) I read this description here ...
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  • 483
11 votes
3 answers
5k views

How should I determine whether a deck is legal in a particular format?

I have a list of cards for a deck I want to build or buy. What should I do to check whether that deck is legal in a particular format (Standard, for example)?
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14 votes
3 answers
3k views

Does a card that affects 'each' creature affect creatures that enter the battlefield after it resolves?

My opponent casts Predatory Rampage, which resolves, then he attacks with his creatures. In my hand, I have a creature card with Flash. If I summon this creature before the declare blockers step, ...
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7 votes
2 answers
18k views

When I gain control of a creature, do I also gain control of any auras or equipment attached to it?

What would happen if I Portent of Betrayal'd a creature that had been enchanted by a bestow creature and cast a spell to give it protection from the enchantment's color on it to remove the bestowed ...
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  • 173
5 votes
3 answers
9k views

Underworld Connections: Tapping the Land for mana and ability?

Let's say i enchant a land with Underworld Connections. Would i be able to tap said land for mana, and use the ability of Underworld Connections concurrently?
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-2 votes
1 answer
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Multiple permanents entering the battlefield simultaneously and “Enter the Battlefield” effects [duplicate]

There are many cards that can put multiple permanents onto the battlefield simultaneously, such as Scapeshift, Living Death, or Pyxis of Pandemonium. How do these interact with the following types of ...
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44 votes
4 answers
176k views

Land ratio vs mana curve

When choosing cards for a deck, one of the most important things to consider is the number of land you put in. The biggest issue is mana curve, of course. What shortcuts are best for determining the ...
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21 votes
6 answers
81k views

How should I determine how many lands of each different color to put in my deck?

Situation: You've built your at least 2 color deck, know exactly what number of lands you want in it, but don't know how many to put in of each basic-land type. How do pro-players figure this out? ...
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80 votes
12 answers
103k views

Why would you want to play with a deck bigger than 60 cards in MTG?

In Magic the Gathering, the decks are required to be no less than 60 cards, but can be larger. Since you can only have 4 of each card (except for basic lands), it seems you would want the limit size ...
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18 votes
5 answers
18k views

Does "Going Infinite" necessarily end the game?

I've seen a variety of combinations that will allow a player to "go infinite"* in life, power, toughness or simply create an endless loop**. In the case of the endless loop, I understand why it ...
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17 votes
2 answers
26k views

Does a +1/+1 counter remove a -1/-1 counter?

My opponent controls a Kulrath Knight. I control a 4/4 creature (with a -1/-1 counter on it, due to an earlier cast Black Sun's Zenith). If I use an ability to put a +1/+1 counter on my 4/4 ...
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17 votes
6 answers
90k views

Where can I sell my Magic: The Gathering cards?

I played for quite a few years and have a ton of cards that I want to get rid of. I have a mix of all editions before 2007. 7th, 8th, etc... So the question is where can I sell them effectively. And ...
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  • 279
14 votes
2 answers
2k views

Do things on the stack or state-based effects resolve between first strike and normal combat damage?

I have two examples of different scenarios that are confusing to me. First, if I have a 1/1 creature with first strike and deathtouch, and my opponent blocks it with a 2/2 creature, will my creature ...
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27 votes
1 answer
55k views

How does the double strike mechanic interact with other mechanics like lifelink or trample?

I understand that the double strike mechanic allows a creature to attack in both a first strike combat damage step and a normal combat damage step. It's clear that when a creature with no other ...
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21 votes
3 answers
11k views

Can I use a card with "Add one mana of any color to your mana pool" in any Elder Dragon Highlander (EDH) deck?

I recently tried Elder Dragon Highlander/Commander, and found it to be a ton of fun. I've started customizing one of the pre-cons I got, but I'm a little confused by some of the deck-building ...
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19 votes
5 answers
83k views

When a land becomes creature, can you kill it?

Some lands have an ability to become a creature, but they usually say they are still a land. If a land is a 3/3 creature and a land, can you target and kill it with a Lightning Bolt to send it to the ...
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13 votes
4 answers
5k views

What can I do about uncounterable spells?

I cast Fling, sacrificing my only creature to kill my opponent. My opponent responds with Last Word, which will win the game the other way. Last Word says "This spell can't be countered." What else ...
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12 votes
1 answer
3k views

Can I draw something on my card and play tournaments with it?

Just out of curiosity, what can I do to the card, so it's still legal to play it in official tournaments? Can I draw something over ruling texts? Can I draw something over artwork? Can I draw ...
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10 votes
2 answers
4k views

Can you stop casting a spell?

Ok, I was playing an EDH game with my friend and I had 8 mana available to me. In order for me to win the game, I had to destroy one of his permanents with a Spine of Ish Sah (7 mana). Now I planned ...
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  • 358
8 votes
1 answer
854 views

What happens in the event of a standoff in Magic?

What happens in a game of magic if neither player can win or lose? Examples: Both players have empty libraries and control Dragon Appeasement on an otherwise empty board. One player controls ...
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27 votes
2 answers
13k views

Can non-creature permanents have +1/+1 counters?

Say I have a Blinkmoth Nexus and Steel Overseer out. I tap the Steel Overseer for his ability to put +1/+1 counters while my Blinkmoth is a creature, and it gains a counter. After my Blinkmoth goes ...
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