Random thought-experiment thread from the Wizards Magic Online BBS, but interesting to any Magic players...
How about huge number of Arcbound Workers? They're modular and cost only 1 mana to cast.--King DJ Hmm. For my money it's Forest and Muscle Sliver. After 2x turns, you have 2^x number of (2+2^x/2+2^x) green creatures. But there are far, far more evil combos than that, as someone's sure to tell you. Or read the posts. --Requiem I think my deck of MTG: Triskelion plus MTG: Mishra's Workshop beats the Muscle Slivers, and perhaps the Arcbound Workers... and stands a good chance of beating MTG: Meddling Mage (which is terrifying in the format). --AlexChurchill Mishra's Factory and Arcbound Worker for beating the Mages? --Requiem
This is quite fun... on first readthru AlexChurchill only found 12. Some are quite subtly hidden; I currently think I've found 22. But one or two of them could be a mistake on the part of the MTGcom webmaster rather than MaRo, one of them might be true if we're missing a certian key piece of information, and one of them is the old "there aren't actually 20 mistakes" mistake. I was just so sure that MaRo would use that one that I was only expecting to find 19, but if one of my webmaster errors isn't one MaRo was counting then I've got 20 normal ones. How did others do?
From the Scourge "fat pack". One of magicthegathering.com's easier puzzles, AlexChurchill thinks, but still entertainingly intricate. (I think I was able to kill one more creature than necessary?) But you've gotta love the combination of [Faces of the Past] with MTG: Imagecrafter.
I've found some other great ones in the past. I'll try to remember to link them from here at some point.
ChrisHowlett can *almost* do it, but is killed by the pillar when he casts Brain Freeze. Also, does a Quanar'ed storm spell re-storm?
It doesn't. The copy is "put on the stack", not "played", so Storm doesn't trigger. And yes, avoiding dying to the combination of Vengeful Deads and the Pillar is tricky, but doable. --AC
Damn, I thought I had it there, but I can't play enough spells. I was assuming a win by decking, but I'm not convinced now. I'd need to play 4 spells before Brain Freeze, but I only have 3 and one of them does me damage. --CH
Well. Remember that even if the copied Freeze or Scattershot doesn't Storm again, it does add one extra copy... although you may have difficulty finding the mana to play every spell in your hand. --AC
Another ruling to note: When a creature dies, Faces of the Past lets you either tap everything that shared a creature type with it, or untap everything such. You can't tap some and untap others. --AC
Question: what does playing a morph count towards? Do you take pain from the pillar? Do you add one to the storm? From reading FAQ, you definitely add one to the storm. Can someone tell me about the pillar?
Playing a card using Morph counts as playing a spell with mana cost 0. You have to pay 3 mana to do so, but the face-down spell on the stack has converted mana cost 0. So it does trigger the Pillar, and it does count as a spell for Storm purposes. --AC
From the Legions "fat pack". Nicely complicated tricks of morphing, creature types, and other fun things. AlexChurchill thought he'd managed to exceed the required damage by 2, but in fact was mistaken. The answer's in the [Arcana archive].
Actually came up in Magic Online. There are about 10 solutions, of which AlexChurchill came up with 3. Requires a near-encyclopaedic knowledge of Seventh Edition, Invasion block, Odyssey block, and Onslaught. Alternatively, can still be quite fun to do with a searchable card database.
MaGo couldn't figure out what the last combo was inteded to do. Suggestions here.
ChrisHowlett reckons you have the mindslaver, coupon and the transfixer on the table, use the transfixer to tap the coupon (so it can't be used), donate the coupon and pop the 'slaver. Then on your opponent's turn, force them to buy themselves the most expensively alcoholic drink at the bar.
PeterTaylor reckons ChrisHowlett is a genius. I couldn't work out what on Earth it was for, but that works and is quite plausible.
That does indeed make sense. AC thought it was a nombo/bombo about forcing your opponent to force you to force them to buy you a drink, based on the misguided impression that using the MTG: Auriok Transfixer's ability would cause any tap ability of the artifact to become played (the way people supposedly misunderstood MTG: Twiddle targeting a MTG: Prodigal Sorcerer to work).
Quite tempted to submit my solution to Mark Gottlieb, and see what he thinks, if anything. --CH
You should. He doesn't appear to have a full inbox ATM anyway - or, at least, he already replied to mine about fixing Symbiote/Tangleroot?. --PT
AC guessed 3-10 without spoiler help (and agrees with CH on those eight), but couldn't think of anything for 1 or 2. I think he might have been hoping that we'd think 3 was MTG: Murderous Spoils. I think CH is right about 1 but not 2. I'm intrigued by 2... The wording is technically open to the possibility that the card doesn't give counters, but ... I know! I think it's MTG: Stand Together. The instant-speed +1/+1 counters would fit with "insta-enchantments".
That probably makes more sense, yes. I wonder what the wite and red ones were? --CH
MaRo wants people to help him create a complete accidental alphanumeric alphabet from Magic card art. (eg, there's a K on MTG: Deflection). I reckon Wiki Magic players could help with this. Bung your suggestions next to the letters below, and see if we can get him a full alphabet! Note that the letters must be unintentional - the artist shouldn't have put them there deliberately (ie, you can't have actual text in art!)
AlexChurchill went through his rares binder looking for ideas, and has added the fruits below. Some of them are a bit dubious, but it's better to have some suggestion than nothing printed there at all; if you find one better I don't mind mine being removed. I think we ought to each take say one old set (Ice Age, Mirage, etc) and look at each card from that set. That way we avoid the recency effect that most of MaRo's readers started playing in the past three years. Also look at all art for Dragons, Wurms and Eqipment, as I think those are rather more likely to be letterlike than the typical piece of Magic art.
ChrisHowlett will take IceAge?, although since he's away for the next fortnight it might take a while to finish :)
The competition may have passed, but I still think this could be interesting if people spot things in passing. CH will be keeping his eyes peeled. There's an interesting thread on one of the Wizards forums at the moment which poses the following puzzle (abbreviated to the interesting bit): You are playing a goldfish. The challenge is to see how much damage you can do to it on turn 6. You can use any cards except (for the sake of a challenge) cards that would make you draw a card or put a card into your hand. Assume that you draw first, so during those 6 turns you will draw 13 cards. You may not do anything that would cause your opponent to lose life or take damage before turn 6. Infinite loops do not count. (This includes decks which use MTG: Goblin Charbelcher and an arbitrary number of MTG: Relentless Rats).
(PeterTaylor) The best I've done (although someone else did most of the work - I just optimised their play) is roughly 10^(3.52x10^49). That was T1 legal.
In fact, I hadn't optimised the play - someone else pointed out a minor change which takes it to roughly 10^(5.14x10^97).
See [posts 83 and 119]. I submitted a borken solution yesterday, which used Wishes to get a total of 385 discards (would be 400 but MTG: Burning Wish is restricted in Type I). However, I came up with a solution which goes infinite after I went to bed. Can anyone else figure it out? Does anyone with an account there want to borrow my solution, giving me some satisfaction despite my incompetence? About 45 mins 'til closing time. No takers?
Unhinged Collecter Number Words
You've probably noticed that each Unhinged card has, after the collector number, a word (real or imaginary). MaRo cannot be cruel enough for these to have no meaning, so let's try to figure it out.
They words appear to be senseless if arranged in order (they don't seem to acrostic, either), but there are some tantalising things: For instance, card 77 has "Uncle", card 13 has "Istvan;". Similarly, there is "Circle" "Protection:" and any number of "of"s.
I suggest we all list the words we have on our cards below, which should provide us with a relatively complete picture of the set. Include punctuation - I think it's important - in particular note that ";" turns up frequently, and may be a terminator.
Here are some more cards that didn't make it. Moronic Tutor; Lint Golem; Wave of incontinence; I'm quittin Magic; Bob from Accounting; Castrate; Mishra's Bling Bling;Dead Bunny Isle; Circle of Protection: Pants; Time Fart; Sliver and Onions; Kobold Ass Master; Thirsty Barn; Mild Mongrel; Robo-Samurai; Obligitory Chump-blocking Orphan; Wrath of Dog; Celery Stalker; Hugs-a-Lot Demon of Assticore; Codpiece the Chosen; Hurl; What the Crack?; Nachomancer; Scrubotomy; Arcbound Noah; Darksteel Spork; Look at Me, I'm Accounts Recievable; Hydro Djinn; Bad Stone Rain Variant; S.O.B.F.M.; Pinko Kami; Purple Nurple; Form of Uncle Istvan; Them's Fightin' Words; Spleen of Ramos; Fifteenth Pick; Squizzle, goblin Nabizzle ; Zombie Cheerleading Squad; Two-way Myr; Bone Flute 2: Electric Boogaloo; Magic Offline; Nutclamp; Bwahahahaaa!; Dragon Ass; Phyrexian Sno-Cone Machine; Chimney Pimps; R.T.F.C.; Greased Weasel; Flame War, We Don't Need No Stinkin' Merfolk; Ting!; and Disrobing Scepter (again!)
1) Apropos Campanological Performance 2) Colloquial Tea 3) [ESC] Chrononauts get less 4) gasp gasp gasp GASP ( 5) "Li Mother Of Flame" 6) Mental Sump 7) Tease a fruity cake? 8) N..A..R..E..? 9) Devastating, Underworld & Insidious 10) Hit by the Olsens! 11) a la Dream Lover 12) Knave gets sour war joke 13) Canine Haemorrhoid 14) Deer has meal 15) Exposed oneself in a draft 16) How Crusoe found Friday? 17) eltsirg 18) Breathe out (without the beer) and about 19) Friend to Duane? 20) A-List, B-List, C-List etc 21) 6-feet under (and cross) 22) She said 3.30 23) I doubt a marlin 24) Funny and clever e-mail 25) A History Of Rambling? 26) Janeway? Chakotay? Parris? 27) U R a penis! 28) It saves 9 29) Hieroglyphic Word Game 30) Risky A.A.A.A 31) O! Stephen's fist! 32) Umlantir, Izzet Marquis 33) British Snack Bacon-flavoured 34) Adding-up Time 35) Comedy situation? Yelp! 36) Put a flamin' end to it! 37) English Al 38) Single parade of 39) Yearn for the Latin bear? 40) Finally, someone has sneaked into the Quiz twice can you tell me who it is?
qqzm has just started looking at it and has about half a dozen so far.
Magic: the Pondering
Die Of Shock
This puzzle arose out of a punny discussion on ToothyChat. If you're causing someone to "die of shock", what's the best way to do it? For purposes of this puzzle, "die of shock" implies that the opponent is on 20 life, and you're going to kill them using cards (or other objects) called MTG: Shock, with no other object dealing damage to them (or causing them to lose for other reasons). Also, any mana counts count the total mana spent (so MTG: Seething Song won't help you, as you spend 3, and then probably spend another 5). Different variations of the puzzle are possible:
Fewest Cards, then Least Mana
Using only two cards plus some mana, ChrisHowlett was able to make someone "die of shock" by spending 5 generic and 12 red mana. AlexChurchill found a different solution using only two cards, but that needed 25 generic mana and 19 red. Can you (a) figure out these two solutions, and/or (b) find any other two-card solutions?
It's possible with two cards, 18 generic, 3 red and nine blue. --Edwin
This is trickier. StuartFraser suggested spending 4 red and 18 generic mana, but he was presupposing some permanents on the table: including their costs as well brings the total up to 4 red and 33 generic mana. ChrisHowlett found a solution using 9 red and 2 generic mana (5 cards total); AlexChurchill one using 9 red and 1 generic mana (six cards total). Can you figure out these solutions, or find any others of comparable or cheaper cost?
I can do 2UGGGG, with five cards. (Edit: Actually, drop the GGGG) --Edwin
Five cards, 2U, dealing 20 damage with MTG: Shock? Impressive! Oh - I see. Not sure why you need 5 though...--CH
Yes, I see the loophole and the card, but I don't get the GGGG or the fish, and it does seem to presuppose rather more turns than I'd imagined. To do it in one turn would need... hmm, the cheapest way would in fact need GGGGG, I think. (Or other permutations of five mana such as 1RRGG.) --AC
1U to cast a permanent, then 1 to play an activated ability. My GGGG (or 0) was budgeted on casting something one turn and doing all the damage the next turn. Reducing it to all one turn would be another card and another G or R. The fish do the same as what costs GGGG, uses the same number of cards, but costs no mana. --Edwin
Ahhhh... those fish :) (I looked at all merfolk and fish, but missed those fish :) ) Very nice. And very naughty. I salute thee. --AC
Actually, it's possible to do this using five cards and only RRRRR. Find that one too.
10th Edition Art Previews
MagicTheGathering.com are previewing all the art for 10th edition in the feature articles for the next 5 weeks, in 5 chunks... but without any names! Put your guesses here as to what they are. The chunks are, in some order, cardnames A-D, D-H, H-P, Q-S, S-Z. Answers are given each week, and will be added in bold.
Build a [Vintage-legal] deck, then stack it in any order you choose. Your opponent gets to cut it exactly once before you draw your opening hand. You will take the first turn, and your opponent has no way to interact with you during your first turn. Can you stack your deck so that you win the game on that first turn no matter where your opponent chooses to cut the deck?
For the moment, let's assume the cut is taking some number of cards from the top of the deck and putting them on the bottom (or vice versa). AlexChurchill's discussion of possible routes to a solution follows below.
We can arrange the deck with a periodicity of 7 such that it goes A1B1C1D1E1F1G1 A2B2C2D2E2F2G2 ... A8B8C8D8E8F8G8 A9B9C9D9. So to have reliability wherever we end up - say E2 F2 G2 A3 B3 C3 D3 - we want to find categories of card such that we can have 9 of them in the deck and end up drawing a game-winning combo. A: We'll probably want something like a land that can tap for any colour of mana on turn 1 - there's enough of those. (MTG: City of Brass x4, MTG: Tarnished Citadel x4) B: We'd also like moxen to get a bit more mana. There's the five original Moxen, plus MTG: Lotus Petal, MTG: Black Lotus, MTG: Chrome Mox and MTG: Mox Diamond (we can stack things to have the right spare card for the Chrome and Diamond moxen.) C: Key to winning consistently will be a 1-mana tutor. MTG: Demonic Consultation has no drawback when we know the order of the deck. MTG: Mystical Tutor and MTG: Vampiric Tutor need a card-draw to work. Still need 6 more. What do we actually want to win with?