Ask the Judge, 04/13/2006
Rules Tip of the Day: No player receives priority in the untap step. Some effects require a player to makes choices as to what to untap or not untap, but you can't play spells or abilities during this step.
A: Yes, as the controller of these two triggered abilities you can choose the order they go on the stack and, therefore, the order that they resolve in. To do what you want, just have the Pioneer's ability go on the stack first followed by the Wayfinder's ability.
Q: I have Annex in play, enchanting an opponent's land, so it's under my control. Then I play Vedalken Plotter or Shifting Borders to exchange two lands, targeting an opponent's land and the land Annex enchants. What will happen now? Because Annex says that I control the enchanted land, will I get the land back? Or I can't exchange the control of the Annex' land and another?
A: You can choose to exchange the land enchanted by Annex with Vedalken Plotter's ability but if you do you will not get the land back. When determining the control of a permanent you apply all control effects according to when they resolve. In this example the timestamp from the Vedalken Plotter was applied last, so it will determine the controller of this enchanted land. It does not matter that it continues to be enchanted, the effect it generates is overridden by the effect from the Plotter.
Q: I have Spreading Plague in play and I attack. My opponent uses Orochi Hatchery to bring out seven snake tokens. My question now is, will all of the tokens survive the effect of Spreading Plague, or will there be only one left?
A: Actually, none of the token creatures will survive. All seven of these token creatures will come into play at one time. When they do, Spreading Plague's ability will trigger once for each: seven times. When each of these triggered abilities resolves, all green creatures except for the token that caused the ability to trigger will be destroyed. So none of the recently created tokens will be able to survive all seven of these triggered abilities.
Q: My opponent had a Wall of Tears and Abu Jafar in play. He has no Mountains and twelve life. I have Goblin War Drums, Coat of Arms, and three 1/1 Goblins in play. I play Goblin King and attack with the three 1/1 Goblins, which are now 5/5s. He blocks one with Abu Jafar and Wall of Tears. My question is which effect would apply from the blockers or does someone get to choose?
A: The controller of the two triggered abilities can determine the order that they go on the stack; however, it does not matter. Abu Jafar's ability destroys the creature it blocks after it goes to the graveyard. This will take place before the end of combat step, when Wall of Tears' delayed triggered ability returns this blocked creature to its owners hand.
Q: If no other creatures are in play on either side of the field and I cast Man-o'-War, does it bounce back to my hand, being the only targetable creature now on the field?
A: Yes, that ability must target something, and if the Man-o'-War is the only creature in play, it must be targeted by its own comes-into-play triggered ability.
A: Yes, for the purposes of blocking you treat a Giant Spider, and all others with the "spider" ability, exactly as though they had flying. This means that it will be affected by Talruum Piper's ability and be required to block it.
Q: Would Sizzle affect each opposing player in Two-Headed Giant, or just the team?
A: Sizzle will cause both of the "heads" on the opposing team to take three points of damage. The end result is that the opposing teams life total will go down by a total of six.
Q: I'm watching a match between two people and one of the guys is playing the Owling Mine deck. During the course of the first game I see him play Meloku, the Clouded Mirror, which usually doesn't show up in most Owling Mine decks. Later in to the tournament I play that same guy. As the game progresses it is clear that neither of us is getting close to winning. I draw a Cranial Extraction and my opponent has very few cards left in his library. Would it be considered cheating for me to use the information I gathered earlier and name Meloku, because as far as I know that is the only win condition left in his deck?
A: While you could debate the ethical implications of what you have done, there is nothing within the rules of Magic that prevents you from using the information you gathered from watching a previous match. What you have described is in no way cheating. Because you saw you current opponent play Meloku earlier in the day, that is public information, and you can utilize any public information when playing a game.