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Pojo's Magic The Gathering
Judge's Corner

Phage the Doppelganger

Short Answer:

-A triggered ability starts with the words "When," "Whenever" or "At." (404.1)


Q: Regarding Vesuvan Doppelganger:

First, if you want it to copy Phage the Untouchable, would it kill you do to the "come into play from anywhere but your hand" ability?

Vesuvan Doppelganger


Creature -- Doppelganger


As Vesuvan Doppelganger comes into play, you may choose a creature in play. If you do, Vesuvan Doppelganger comes into play as a copy of that creature except for its color and gains "At the beginning of your upkeep, you may have this creature become a copy of target creature except for its color. If you do, this creature gains this ability."

Phage the Untouchable


Creature -- Minion Legend


When Phage the Untouchable comes into play, if you didn't play it from your hand, you lose the game.

Whenever Phage deals combat damage to a creature, destroy that creature. It can't be regenerated.

Whenever Phage deals combat damage to a player, that player loses the game.

When Phage says "it," it means the card that the ability is printed on. Since Vesuvan copies that, it will also have that ability. But (assuming you played Vesuvan), you did play the Vesuvan Phage from your hand. So the "lose the game" ability won't trigger.


Q: Also, by changing it during your upkeep to Phage, would it kill you from the aforementioned ability?

A: No. It is not coming into play, so the ability won't trigger.


Q: Next, if I play a Fatal Mutation on a Chromeshell Crab and my opponent flips the Chromeshell Crab face up, first, does its ability go on the stack?

A: Yes. Fatal Mutation doesn't prevent morph triggers from happening.


Q: Can he trade the Chromeshell Crab for one of my creatures?

-Lloyd M.

A: Depends on who's turn it is. If he flips it face up during his turn, the Crab's trade ability will go on the stack first, then the Mutation. The Mutation will destroy the Crab first, and when it comes time to trade the Crab for a creature, the Crab is no longer there, so the exchange effect fails. (Definition, Exchange)

However, if he flips it during your turn, the Mutation's ability will go on the stack first, then the Crab. The Crab's exchange ability will resolve first, exchanging the creatures. Then the Mutation's destroy effect will resolve, destroying the Crab. End effect, he gets one of your creatures.


Q: I have Fallen Angel and Drudge Skeletons in play. Can I 'sacrifice' Drudge Skeletons and then regenerate him right away?


A: 419.6b Regeneration is a destruction-replacement effect. The key word “instead” doesn’t appear on the card but is implicit in its definition. “Regenerate [permanent]” means “The next time [permanent] would be destroyed this turn, instead remove all damage from it, tap it, and (if it’s in combat) remove it from combat.” Note that if destruction is caused by lethal damage, any abilities that trigger from that damage being dealt still trigger even if the permanent regenerates.

Sacrifice != (does not equal) Destroy. So you can't regenerate from a sacrifice.


Q: If I activate my Consumptive Goo, and the target creature gains protection from black, will the Goo still get a +1/+1 counter?

-William B.

A: No. All of the ability's targets are illegal, so the ability is countered, and the untargeted part won't happen. (413.2a)


Q: During my upkeep I have in play one Urza's Blueprints played last turn and one Goblin Welder. In my graveyard there is another Blueprints. This should be possible:

Echo on stack

Tap Blueprints (draw a card)

Tap Welder to sacrifice the blueprint in play and get the other one.

Tap the new Blueprint

A: Correct.


Q: But do I have to pay the echo of the new Blueprints during this upkeep?

A: 502.19a Echo is a triggered ability. “Echo” means “At the beginning of your upkeep, if this permanent came under your control since the beginning of your last upkeep, sacrifice it unless you pay its mana cost.”

Since the beginning of your upkeep has already passed, the new Blueprints' Echo won't happen until the beginning of your next upkeep.


Q: My opponent has a Coffin Queen in play which in turn brought back a Penumbra Wurm. If I play Wave of Reckoning, will he get a wurm token?


A: Yes. It dies to the Wave, so he gets a token.


Q: Could you use Mind's Desire to play Phage?

-Don A.

A: Sure. But since you didn't play it from your hand, you lose the game when Phage's trigger resolves.

See you Monday.

Bill Guerin

Ask Judge Bill A Question

DCI Level 2 Judge




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