Published on 05/02/2022

Mob Nixilis is Making You an Offer You Can't Refuse

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Just When I Think I'm Out, They Pull Me Back In.

The streets are dangerous to be on alone, and seriously it's better to be the right hand of the devil than to be in his path. May I suggest joining us in the Mob of Nixilis? The perks are great, the suits are to die for, and could you ask for better protection?

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Welcome to our second week of Streets of New Capenna rules questions. I have a feeling in the coming months of Magic across many formats we will see a great deal of the this new Nixilis card, so let's start today by answering several questions about this mafia don.

Q: My opponent tells me they can get to three Ob Nixilis, the Adversary by casting only two of them, is this true?

A: If they do it correctly they can! They must pay the casualty cost for each Nixilis. Each creature sacrificed this way must have one or more power. Now the tricky part is understanding the legend rule, which is a state-based action. For reference here, it is:

The Legend Rule
704.5j If a player controls two or more legendary permanents with the same name, that player chooses one of them, and the rest are put into their owners' graveyards.

When the second Nixilis resolves, your opponent will have to choose and put one of the two paper Nixilis into their graveyard. If they choose to put the newest Nixilis into the graveyard, they won't be able to activate any of his loyalty abilities before he trips face first into the graveyard. Both Nixilis tokens will survive this process as neither token is legendary. For the legend rule to affect something, it needs to be both legendary and have the same name as another permanent controlled by the same player.

Q: Earlier in the game, I sacrificed a 7/7 creature token to pay Ob Nixilis, the Adversary's casualty cost. Currently the token Nixilis has only 5 loyalty. If I cast Clever Impersonator and have it copy the Nixilis token, how much loyalty will it have?

A: Impersonator Nixilis will have 7 loyalty. The casualty ability sets the Nixilis token's copiable loyalty number to 7.

Q: I control Errant, Street Artist. Can I use it to copy the casualty copy of Ob Nixilis, the Adversary? If I do, will both tokens be non-legendary or will one still be legendary? How much loyalty will the Errant copy have?

A: You can do this! Errant can copy permanent spells if they were not cast. The casualty copy of Nixilis is not cast. Casualty puts a non-legendary version of Nixilis on the stack. When you copy him with Errant, Errant will also put a non-legendary copy of Nixilis on the stack. The Errant copy will have the same amount of starting loyalty as the casualty copy has. So if you sacrificed a Bear Cub to pay the casualty cost, both tokens will start as 2 loyalty. You don't have to (nor can you) sacrifice another creature to make the Errant copy.

Q: If I activate Kaya, Geist Hunter's second ability and then in the same turn cast Ob Nixilis, the Adversary and pay his casualty cost by sacrificing a Bear Cub, how many Nixilis tokens will I get?

A: You will only get one Nixilis token. Kaya only increases the number of tokens you receive if the tokens were "created". However, when you copy a permanent spell, it becomes a token as it enters the battlefield. No token was created, so Kaya is too afraid to make an extra Nixilis. (I would be, too.)

I don't like violence, Tom.

Q: I've cast Ob Nixilis, the Adversary and sacrificed a Bear Cub to pay the casualty cost. Can my opponent Void Rend my Nixilis token before I can activate any of his abilities? Can they do the same thing to the original Nixilis?

A: Usually when a planeswalker is cast, this happens at sorcery speed during its controller's turn, during a main phase, with no spells below it on the stack. So when it resolves, it's the main phase of the controller and therefore they get priority first and can activate a loyalty ability before any opponent can cast an instant or activate an ability. Usually, even if an opponent tries to kill a planeswalker as soon as they can after it's cast, its controller should get one activation. (This may resolve after the walker is dead, but still will do as much as it can.)

Its worth noting, when a loyalty ability is activated, the loyalty changes before an opponent can react (going up or down in loyalty is part of the cost of activating the ability).

However, with Nixilis, if you pay the casualty cost, the token will enter the battlefield before the original has resolved. This means that although you get priority, you can't activate its loyalty abilities because the stack isn't empty, giving the opponent an opportunity to kill the token before it can use a loyalty ability.

When the original Nixilis resolves, the stack will be empty and you can safely get one activation off before the opponent can react.

Q: I'm resolving the attack trigger for All-Seeing Arbiter and after discarding a card to the ability I have the following cards in my graveyard:

What's the value of X for the -X/-0 ability?

A: Brokers Hideout, Astral Cornucopia, and Accorder's Shield are each 0. Lands have a mana value of 0. While in the graveyard, X in a mana cost is 0. While in the graveyard, split cards like Alive // Well have a mana value of both halves added together, making Alive // Well's mana value 5 (not 1 or 4). While in the graveyard, adventure cards only have the mana value of the creature half of the card, making Ardenvale Tactician's mana value 3. While in the graveyard, transform cards like Ambitious Farmhand and modal double face cards like Augmenter Pugilist each have a mana value based on just the front face, 2 and 3 respectively.

This means in your graveyard you have mana values of 0, 0, 0, 5, 3, 2, and 3. This makes 4 different mana values (three 0's is redundant, and so is two 3's), so the value of X for All-Seeing Arbiter's ability is 4.

Q: If I cast An Offer You Can't Refuse to counter my opponent's Time Stretch, and my opponent responds by casting Endless Detour targeting their own Time Stretch, choosing to put it on top of their library, do they still create two treasure tokens when my spell tries to resolve?

A: Nope. The only target An Offer You Can't Refuse had is now gone, so the whole spell fails to resolve and goes to your graveyard.

Q: If I try to counter my own own Void Rend with An Offer You Can't Refuse, do I still get the treasure even though Void Rend can't be countered?

A: Yes, you do get the treasures. An Offer You Can't Refuse can't counter Void Rend, but it does as much as it can, and creating the treasures is not dependent on countering the spell.

Q: My Body Launderer is killed by Deal Gone Bad, what's the largest power a creature in my graveyard can have that the Body Launderer's trigger can put on the battlefield?

A: Zero. The trigger from Body Launderer uses its last-known information to determine what its power was when it died (0 power). So you can get an Ornithopter back!

It is worth noting there are times where this last-known information is helpful, such as if Body Launderer had a Loxodon Warhammer equipped when it died in combat, meaning it could get you back a Craw Wurm.

Q: I control a 4/3 Ogre Warrior token and it is wielding both an original Brass Knuckles and a copy token of Brass Knuckles. If it attacks and goes unblocked this turn, will it deal 4, 8, 12, or 16 damage to my opponent this turn?

A: It will deal 8 damage total. If a creature has multiple instances of double strike, the ability is redundant. It doesn't turn into triple or quadruple strike (as fun as that sounds).

Q: Does Brokers Ascendancy give Gideon Blackblade both a +1/+1 counter and a loyalty counter?

A: Yes, it does. When Brokers Ascendancy's trigger resolves, each of your planeswalkers gets both counters if it's also a creature at that time.

Q: If my opponent Threatens my 1/1 Citizen token that is currently wielding a Citizen's Crowbar, can they activate the ability granted by the Crowbar to destroy an artifact I control?

A: They can not! Even though they control the creature, the ability requires sacrificing the Crowbar as part of the cost, and a player can't sacrifice something they don't control.

Q: I control Devilish Valet and I have yet to put a creature into play this turn. If I activate Snake Basket for a X of 5 to create five Snake tokens, how big will the Devilish Valet end up being?

A: The Valet with be a 32/3 after all its triggers resolve. When the five Snakes enter the battlefield, each will trigger the Valet's alliance ability. These each resolve one at a time. The first will double Valet to a 2/3, the second doubles that to a 4/3, the third doubles that to a 8/3, the fourth double that to a 16/3, and the fifth and final Snake doubles the Valet to a 32/3.

Revenge is a dish best served cold.

Q: I cast Titan of Industry and choose the modes to destroy my opponent's artifact creature and create a Rhino token for myself. If my opponent responds by sacrificing the artifact creature, do I still get the Rhino?

A: You do not get a Rhino. Much like a spell, if an ability on the stack loses all of its targets by the time it starts to resolve, then the whole ability fails to resolve and has no effect at all.

Q: If my opponent controls a 7/7 token with no damage marked on it, if I shoot it with Unleash the Inferno can I use the excess damage of zero, to destroy their Mox Jet?

A: You can not. For damage to be considered excess it must be 1 or more.

Q: I have a creature with three shield counters on it. When Bribe Taker enters the battlefield, can I give it both a shield counter and a +1/+1 counter?

A: Sadly, not a good enough bribe. You can only get one or the other counter. Bribe Taker is looking for different counter types, not the total number of counters.

Q: Assuming my opponent had the most card types possible in their graveyard, if I attack with Grime Gorger, what's the most +1/+1 counters it could gain from a single attack trigger?

A: So you want to know how many card types there are in Magic? There are two answers to this question. The first is the realistic answer, eight types: Sorcery, Instant, Planeswalker, Creature, Artifact, Enchantment, Land, and Tribal. It's worth noting that Legendary, Snow, and Basic are all supertypes and don't count towards the card types that exist. Subtypes like Shrine, Zombie, and Equipment also don't count towards the card types that exist.

Fourteen types is the second answer, but it requires you to somehow get cards into a graveyard that have no way to be put into a graveyard. You have the normal eight, plus Vanguard, Conspiracy, Dungeon, Scheme, Plane, and Phenomenon.

Q: Both Syrix, Carrier of the Flame and Arclight Phoenix die to my opponent's Wrath of God. Can I cast Syrix because the Arclight Phoenix died this turn?

A: No rebirth for Syrix this turn. Syrix needs to already be in the graveyard when the other Phoenix dies to get its last ability to trigger.

I have a guy downtown to see about a thing,

so until next time,

- Justin Hovdenes AKA Hovey
Level 2 Magic Judge
Rapid City, SD


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