Published on 03/21/2022

Equiznox 4: Kamigawa Drift

Cranial Translation
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Well here we are again
It's always such a pleasure
Greetings and welcome to another issue of Cranial Insertion! Spring has sprung, the cold weather is finally coming to an end, birds are singing, and the smell of freshly opened Magic packs is in the air. Moko has reminded me that it's been a while since we've done a quiz, and since Kamigawa: Neon Dynasty has been out for a bit now, it's time that we had a quiz so you can see what you've learned.

As always, if you have questions for us, feel free to email them to us at , or tweet short questions to @CranialTweet. One of our authors will reply to you, and your question might appear in a future article to entertain and educate readers like yourself!

Q: Which of these are valid creature types?

A: The choices are...

A: Food
B: Shrine
C: Vehicle
D: None of the above
E: All of the above

The answer is

Just because a particular subtype, like Food, appears on a card that's also a creature, like Gingerbrute, doesn't mean that Food is a creature type. The card types creature, artifact, and enchantment have their own unique lists of subtypes, and there is no overlap between those lists. Food is an artifact type, which Gingerbrute is allowed to have because it's an artifact in addition to being a creature. Similarly, Shrine is an enchantment type, which Go-Shintai of Shared Purpose is allowed to have because it's an enchantment in addition to being a creature. Vehicle is another artifact type, and Vehicles are just artifacts that sometimes take on a part-time gig as a creature.

Q: I control a Sandbar Crocodile and target it with Kyodai, Soul of Kamigawa's enter-the-battlefield ability. The Crocodile phases out and back in. Assuming I still control Kyodai then, does the Crocodile still have indestructible?

A: The choices are...

A: Yes
B: No
E: Answers C and D have phased out.

The answer is

Yes, the Crocodile still has indestructible. The resolution of Kyodai's ability created a continuous effect with a duration of "for as long as you control Kyodai", and that duration did not end when the Crocodile phased out. The effect continues to affect the Crocodile while it's phased out, and it continues to affect it after it phases back in.

Q: Which of these cards does Isshin, Two Heavens as One affect?

A: The choices are...

A: Ghostly Prison
B: Curse of Opulence
C: Combat Celebrant
D: Gruul War Chant
E: Cheatyface

The answer is

In order to be affected by Isshin's ability, an ability must be a triggered ability, and its direct cause for triggering must be an attack by a creature. Triggered abilities are usually written as "When/Whenever/At [event], [effect]," so we can rule out Ghostly Prison and Gruul War Chant right away. Ghostly Prison has a static ability that imposes a cost on the declaration of attackers, and Gruul War Chant has a static ability that gives a bonus to attacking creatures.

Combat Celebrant has a triggered ability, but it's not triggered directly by attacking with a creature; it's triggered by choosing to exert it while it attacks. Curse of Opulence has a triggered ability, and its direct cause is an attack by a creature, so it checks both boxes for Isshin's ability.

Mostly void, partially cat.
Q: My opponent controls a Black Cat and I Murder it. Which of these cards stop its ability from triggering?

A: The choices are...

A: Humility
B: Yixlid Jailer
C: Rest in Peace
D: Wheel of Sun and Moon (enchanting my opponent)
E: I suppose you're more of a dog person.

The answer is
A, C, or D.

Black Cat's ability is a leaves-the-battlefield trigger that looks back in time at the game state before the event to determine whether it should trigger. It doesn't matter whether the Cat has the ability in the graveyard; it only matters whether it had it when it was on the battlefield. Therefore, removing the ability with Humility stops it from triggering, while removing the ability with Yixlid Jailer does not.

Rest in Peace and Wheel of Sun and Moon replace the event of the Cat going to the graveyard with going to a different zone instead. To "die" means to go to the graveyard from the battlefield, and since the Cat is not going to the graveyard, it's not dying as far as its triggered ability is concerned, so its ability won't trigger in those cases, either.

Q: Which of these spells does Hinata, Dawn-Crowned make cheaper for me?

A: The choices are...

A: Cancel
B: Deep Analysis
C: A mutate spell
D: Banisher Priest
E: Cheatyface

The answer is
A, B, and C.

Hinata's ability counts how many targets the spell has, and it doesn't matter whether those targets are players, permanents, or game objects in other zones. Cancel has one target, so it gets reduced by . Deep Analysis has one target, so it gets reduced by . A mutating creature spell has one target, so it gets reduced by .

Banisher Priest superficially looks like it has a target, but it's actually just a creature spell that doesn't have a target. Once Banisher Priest resolves, its enter-the-battlefield ability triggers, and that ability has a target, but Hinata doesn't care about that.

Q: My opponent casts Lightning Bolt on my Warrior en-Kor, and in response I activate its ability three times to redirect the damage to my Kor Firewalker. What happens?

A: The choices are...

A: No damage is dealt.
B: The damage is dealt to Kor Firewalker.
C: The damage is dealt to Warrior en-Kor.
D: The ability was activated illegally, so the game is rewound to the point before the activation.
E: Moko says "Ook!"

The answer is

The ability was activated legally, so it resolves and sets up a replacement effect that modifies the next 3 damage that would be dealt to Warrior en-Kor. When Lightning Bolt resolves, the replacement effect kicks in and redirects the damage at Kor Firewalker. However, Kor Firewalker has protection from red and the damage would be dealt by a red source, so the damage is prevented and no damage is dealt.

Q: I control a 4/4, cast Overwhelming Stampede, and copy the Stampede. How big is my creature in the end?

A: The choices are...

A: 8/8
B: 12/12
C: 16/16
D: 20/20
E: OVER 9000!

The answer is

Each time Overwhelming Stampede resolves, it looks at the greatest power among creatures you control, and it gives your creature a power/toughness bonus of that size. The first one that resolves (which is actually the copy that Twincast made) sees that the greatest power among creatures you control is 4, so it gives your creature +4/+4. It is now an 8/8. Then, the second Overwhelming Stampede resolves (which is the original that you cast), and it sees that the greatest power among creatures you control is now 8, so it gives your creature +8/+8 to make it 16/16.

Wind in my hair
Shifting and drifting
Mechanical music
Adrenaline surge
Q: If I tap a creature to crew a Vehicle, when does it get untapped?

A: The choices are...

A: At the end of combat
B: At the end of this turn
C: In your opponent's untap step
D: In your untap step
E: At the end of the day

The answer is

Tapping the creature is the cost you pay to crew the Vehicle, and it simply remains tapped until something untaps it. This normally happens during your untap step, and nothing about the crew ability tells you to untap the creature any sooner or later than that.

Q: I control a Tundra and an Underground Sea. How big is X for Collective Restraint?

A: The choices are...

A: 0
B: 2
C: 3
D: 4
E: 42

The answer is

Collective Restraint counts the number of basic land types among lands you control. There are five basic land types in total, namely Plains, Island, Swamp, Mountain, and Forest. The ability asks for each one whether you control a land of that type, and each "yes" counts a 1 towards the answer. The ability gets "yes" answers for Plains (because Tundra), Island (because Tundra or Underground Sea), and Swamp (because Underground Sea), so the number of basic land types among lands you control is 3.

Q: In which tournament formats are Secret Lair cards like Rick, Steadfast Leader legal?

A: The choices are...

A: Standard
B: Legacy
C: Commander
D: Modern
E: Postmodern

The answer is
B and C.

First off, many Secret Lair cards are reprints of previously existing cards; such reprints are legal in any format in which the previously existing card is legal. This question is not about those cards, but about cards that are unique to Secret Lair, like our friend Rick. As official Magic cards, they are tournament legal, but since they don't belong to a particular expansion, they're only legal in Legacy, Vintage, and Commander.

And that's it for today's quiz. Congratulations on making it all the way through! I hope you had fun, and maybe you learned something new. See you again next week!

-Carsten Haese

About the Author:
Carsten Haese is a former Level 2 judge based in Toledo, OH. He is retired from active judging, but he still writes for Cranial Insertion and helps organize an annual charity Magic tournament that benefits the National MS Society.


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