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(stealthily replying to old questions)

Both of these cards should choose which things they affect when they resolve. So if you play stuff after, or gain control of stuff after, or stuff becomes ninjas after, that new stuff won’t benefit from Stampede or FDS.



If you’re in the mood to reply to older questions, I’d like a reply to this one: If Zane maxband pushes a unit into Squad Leader, does it take damage first, or does it get its Squad Leader armor, and then the damage from Zane’s ability just removes it?

Zane’s damage will hit the armor.


Regarding my old question of two Second Chances, since that doesn’t ever seem to have been resolved – I think the sensible answer is that they both act independently. I.e., if a unit dies by itself, it’s all you’re getting back; if n units die simultaneously for n>1, you’ll usually get 2 back but there’s a 1/n chance you end up only gettng one of them back. Anything else just seems like making special rules. Although I guess it would also kind of make sense if in the n>1 case you were guaranteed to get 2 back, if we imagine that they fired “one at a time” (so that the one that went “second” couldn’t get back the one that the “first” one had already brought back). But allowing a later unit to come back in the n=1 case just seems like it would cause problems.

In particular, here’s one problem that comes up if we go with that idea. The problem with this is, say this happens on your opponent’s turn. Then when that first unit of yours is brought back, it matters which copy of Second Chances brought it back, in case the opponent has upgrade removal – they’ll want to remove the copy that didn’t bring it back so it can’t act later. But how is it determined which one brought it back? You can’t decide; it’s your opponent’s turn. We could paper over this problem by saying that, since there’s nothing that modifies upgrades, the answer is irrelevant and it can be designated arbitrarily, and that kind of works, but that’s pretty icky.

Actually, on the subject of things that affect “the first time each turn” or “the first two times each turn” – I want to check if those work the way I think they do. I’d assumed these implicitly meant “the first time each turn since this card entered play”. So e.g., if you have two copies of Reteller of Truth on the board at the start of the turn, you can only save two Illusions; but if you start with one in play, it can save up to two, and then you play a second copy after that, it can save up to two, since it wasn’t in play for the earlier two and thus they didn’t count towards its ability. (Or if you had no copies, then you could have two of your Illusions die, then play Reteller of Truth, and it would save the next two.) Is that correct? Or do these cards “look back in time” even if they weren’t in play at the start of the turn? Or something else?

Actually on that note here are some simpler things I’m pretty sure of but I just wanted to just check my understanding on?

  1. When Plague Lord attacks, the ability happens after combat damage?
  2. Plague Lab can’t be used on forecasted cards?
  3. Damage from flying over an anti-air unit isn’t considered “ability” damage for the purposes of Sentry?

That’s a whole bunch of questions I guess. Hope that’s OK. Thank you all!

(BTW, pretty sure that in Magic, Crypt Crawler would work on Wandering Mimic, just due to timestamps, if I understand correctly. The conditional granting of flying would be one continuous effect and the removing it another, in the same layer, with no dependencies between them, so the removing it would win due to later timestamps. Not that we want to go importing Magic’s whole layer system into this, but…)

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I would guess that the design intent is either that two Second Chances stack (and hence rescue two units a turn), or that they don’t (and so having a second is superfluous). I don’t see any problems with just ruling that they work according to design intent here.

I don’t think this is a problem. You have two simultaneous effects, the rules already say that active player chooses order when that happens. So the active player chooses which one brought it back.

The game remembers what the ‘first’ unit was, regardless of whether there is a card in play which cares about it. So Drakk maxband only works on the first unit you play from your hand each turn, regardless of whether Drakk was in play or maxband at the time. You can’t play a unit, then maxband Drakk, then play another unit and give it Haste; the game knows that’s not the first unit you played from hand this turn. In this case, Drakk maxband won’t trigger, and nothing gets Haste

  1. ‘Attacks:’ triggers happen just after the attack is declared against a specific target, but before combat damage
  2. No card can affect Forecasted cards unless it specifically says it can
  3. Damage from anti-air against a unit which is flying over is combat damage, and not ability damage. However, sentry only works on damage dealt to patrollers, so I’m not sure why this is relevant here?

Hey, I’m glad to get back to this.

If you have 2 copies of Second Chances and you have n>1 units that leave play simultaneously such that they’re eligible for Second Chances, and you don’t let your Graveyard or Reteller move too many of them somewhere else, you’ll get exactly 2 back.

If you have 2 copies of Second Chances and you have 1 unit leave play such that it’s eligible for Second Chances, both copies of Second Chances will refuse to save any other units.

Your opponent gets to choose the order of your simultaneous triggers during your opponent’s turn.

“Once per turn” like on Second Chances means the ability happens only once per turn per ability. So you could save 2 different units with Second Chances even if they left play at different times by playing your second copy of Second Chances in the middle.

“The first time X happens each turn” like on Reteller of Truths or Drakk Ramhorn is something you can miss if X happens before you have that ability around. So if you play a unit from your hand, then level Drakk to maxband, the next unit you play that turn won’t get haste. The first one won’t get haste either.

Plague Lord’s ability happens before combat damage. So do other abilities with the Attacks: timing and Obliterate.

Right. Plague Lab doesn’t explicitly say it works on stuff in the future, so it doesn’t work on stuff in the future.

Right. Actually Jadiel gave a better answer to this one.

Sure, I agree about that in Magic.

I also agree with @Polari that you could get a derived state where Escaped Shapeshifter is the only creature with flying, but I’m only like 90% sure because it depends on the meaning of “changing how an effect applies”. We know from an example in the comprehensive rules that “gain X” and “lose X” have no dependency, and based on that it’s reasonable to think that Escaped Shapeshifter and Canopy Claws on another creature also have no dependency.

Getting a derived state where Escaped Shapeshifter is the only creature with flying seems like a bug to me. So I don’t think this setup is significantly better than the one we have in Codex.


Please add it to the Second Chances rulings in the database.

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What is it about Second Chances moving something that left play that is different from Graveyard, Reteller, Rambasa Twin, etc?

Why can Second Chances #2 not randomly try and return the same unit as SC#1? i.e. SC#1 and SC#2 see several things leave play, and both ‘randomly’ decide to return the same unit to play. They shouldn’t try to return the same unit every time, but at some point they would randomly pick the same thing.

This is regarding: “you’ll get exactly 2 back”

I’ve been trying to figure out how this works too. I think it has to be as follows:

Say you have Graveyard, Second Chances #1, Second Chances #2, Skeleton Javelineer and Thieving Imp in play, and you cast Judgement Day. This adds 4 triggered effects to the queue, Graveyard (Bury Skeleton Javelineer), Graveyard (Bury Thieving Imp), Second Chances #1 (Return something to play), Second Chances #2 (Return something to play). As the active player, you can choose what order to add them to the queue. Suppose you choose to put Bury Javelineer at the front, then Second Chances #1, then Second Chances #2, then Bury Imp. Bury Javelineer resolves, and Javelineer goes to Graveyard, then Second Chances #1 resolves. It can only see Imp, so it returns it to play, and Imp’s ‘Arrives:’ effect gets added to the queue. Second Chances #2 resolves, but there’s nothing for it to save so it fizzles (but has been used up, and won’t trigger again this turn). Finally Bury Imp triggers, but Imp isn’t in the discard pile, so this fizzles also. Finally, Imp’s ‘Arrives:’ trigger resolves, and the queue is empty.

This is why sharpobject says that as long as Graveyard/Reteller/Rambasa/etc. don’t interfere, you’ll get two things back if two or more units die simultaneously if you have two copies of Second Chances in play. It also appears that Second Chances picks randomly from eligible targets on resolution, not when it’s triggered, otherwise it would be possible for them both to pick the same unit.

This doesn’t seem to follow:

(Choose randomly if multiples leave at once.)

I would assume that ‘things that left play all at once’ are locked in when the event happens (multiple things leaving play), not when one very specific ability resolves.

Furthermore, this would be the first time that I’m aware of where the game doesn’t “know” something.

i.e. The game “knows” whether something gets haste from Drakk or not, etc.

Now we’re saying the game doesn’t “know” the list of what ‘multiple things’ left play at the same time. Instead, the game “forgets” what happened, and makes it best guess, based on the current situation. i.e. it forgets that other (for this case we’ll call them ineligible to be returned with SC) things left play, and doesn’t consider them as allowable targets for SC to randomly pick from.

Jadiel, sharpobject: OK, thanks! Wow, “attacks” triggers are better than I realized. (And “first time…” things worse.) You’re also right that the “problem” I pointed out isn’t actually a problem; I forgot how that works, oops. So I guess Second Chances works consistently after all. (And that was a brain fart on the Sentry question, yeah.)

OK, things make a bit more sense now. Thank you again!

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I think all we’re saying is that Second Chance chooses what it returns on resolution, rather than upon the trigger activating. I don’t think that’s necessarily problematic - there are lots of spells and effects which do this. Obliterate is perhaps the most obvious example where it actually matters, but actually in Codex targets are always chosen on resolution, rather than when effects are triggered (this is different to most other card games, I think). Second Chances is extremely unusual in that it chooses at random (for reasons I don’t understand at all - why not just let the active player choose like in every other case where there are multiple possible things that might be affected by a spell/effect?), so I don’t think there are any other precedents for this.

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Here’s an actual Sentry question: Suppose multiple patrollers are damaged at once. Do you randomly choose a patroller to prevent damage to, or do you randomly choose a point of damage to be prevented, effectively causing patrollers to be weighted by how much damage they received? I.e. in the case where one patroller takes 2 damage and another patroller takes 1 damage (like via Ember Sparks, say), are their chances of having a damage to them prevented 1/2 & 1/2 or is it 2/3 & 1/3?

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I agree with this. What I’m saying is that the list of things it can return doesn’t seem like it would be made on resolution.

Time X, lots of stuff leaves play at the same time; the list of everything that left play is made

Time X+Y, SC#1 resolves

SC asks the game for the list of things which left play together.
The game gives SC the list it made at time X, since that’s when the leaving happened.

There is no ‘updated’ list that only has valid targets remaining, the only the list that exists is the one made back at time X, when all the things left play together.

SC is asking for that list, so it can choose randomly from it.

I don’t see any reason for making a new list at time X+Y of:
What’s left to choose from based on the list made at time X

That’s the part I don’t understand.

You choose a patroller at random from among the patrollers. So 1/2 and 1/2.

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I don’t understand why you think that a list of the game state when the effect was initiated is relevant. For example, if I cast Sacrifice the Weak, it should kill the weakest target when it resolves, not whatever the weakest target was when the effect was added to the queue. Likewise, if a unit with a -1/-1 rune dies when maxband Orpal is in play, and some effect returns that unit to play before Orpal’s maxband resolves, it should be a legal target for Orpal’s maxband, even though it wasn’t in play when the effect triggered.

I guess what I’m saying is for some reason you seem to want the list of potential targets to be ‘saved’ when the ability joins the queue, whereas I don’t think there’s any effect in the game which works like that, Every other effect chooses from it’s potential targets when it resolves. I realise this effect is slightly unusual in that it chooses at random, but I’m not sure why that should effect when the potential targets list is decided on…

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Cosier is right that Second Chances has to do some locking in of eligible targets when it is enqueued. If some units leave play in a way eligible for Second Chances, then immediately some other unit leaves play in a way that would be eligible for Second Chances while Second Chances is waiting around to do its thing, Second Chances would not help the latter unit no matter what.

There’s no other ability in the game that works like this because no other ability in the game tries to do what Second Chances is doing. Normally if there’s a triggered ability that affects a certain thing, it locks in what it affects when it is enqueued, and normally if there’s an ability that lets you choose, it lets you choose from a broad class of things during resolution.

Second Chances says “Whenever one of your non-token units leaves play from something other than combat damage, return it to play. Once-per-turn.” I am interpreting this to mean something like “Whenever one or more of your non-token units leaves play from something other than combat damage and this ability hasn’t triggered this turn so far, return one of them to play.” It seems like that ability locks in the set of eligible units (“one of them”) when it triggers.

For Cosier’s concern about choosing units that aren’t there anymore, let’s again think about what we would do if the card said “Whenever one or more of your non-token units leaves play from something other than combat damage and this ability hasn’t triggered this turn so far, return one of them to play.” With this text we have to choose the unit (not decide at random) during resolution. If we locked in a set of {Skeleton Javelineer, Thieving Imp} when we enqueued it, but the Javelineer was gone, we would still have to choose something. This is true in the same way that a player cannot choose a target for Orpal’s maxband that was around when the maxband triggered but is not around during its resolution. I think that choosing randomly vs. not choosing randomly should not change that.


I see, thank you!

If Second Chances rescues an ephemeral unit as it’s leaving play at end-of-turn, will that unit try to die again, or is the end-of-turn event a once-per-turn trigger?

it will not try to die again until the next turn

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