Mind Twists #2

Find out the correct solutions and who won the prizes from Mind Twists #1, and see what Magic puzzles Dayv Doberne has in store for you to solve this week!

Hello everybody and welcome to the second edition of Mind Twists! First off, I’d like to thank everybody who emailed in an answer—in the past week, I received a whopping 836 submissions! Of those submissions, our winners are Charles Barrett ("Caged") and Charles McEachern ("That’s a Pretty Big Fireball"). Check your inboxes!

Here are the solutions to last week’s puzzles:


There were several possible solutions to this puzzle, and Charles’ solution was pretty straightforward:

  • End of turn pay BBBUUU and use Dark Imposter to exile Vorstclaw (Dark Imposter becomes a 4/4).
  • Untap, then during upkeep pay UU for Fettergeist.
  • Draw the Swamp, play the Swamp, and then play Human Frailty for B destroying Geist Trappers.
  • Pay BBBUUU for Dark Imposter’s ability on the Gloomwidow, making Dark imposter a 5/5.
  • Attack with everything for 13.

There was also a pretty nifty solution involving Homicidal Seclusion:

  • End of turn pay BBBUUU to use Dark Imposter’s ability on itself.
  • Untap, then during upkeep don’t pay Fettergeist’s cost and sacrifice it.
  • Draw the Swamp, play it, and then cast Homicidal Seclusion for BUUUU.
  • Attack with the lone Soulcage Fiend, dropping the opponent to 2 and going up to 11 from lifelink.
  • Play Barter in Blood, sacrificing Soulcage Fiend, draining the opponent to -1 and yourself to 8.

Congratulations Charles Barrett; you will receive a signed Barter in Blood!

That’s a Pretty Big Fireball

To my knowledge, there was only one solution to this puzzle: dealing exactsies between the Fireball and Riku’s attack for two. Here’s the solution:

Congratulations to Charles McEachern; you will receive a signed Early Harvest!

Before we delve into this week’s puzzles, I’m going to make some modifications to the submission procedure. Due to the sheer number of submissions I received, I ask that the email subject line be exactly the name of the puzzle and only one puzzle submission per email. You can still submit solutions to both puzzles, but please send them in different emails. This will just make it that much easier for me to sort through my emails and pick a winner each week.

Also, the "graded system" where solutions submitted on Wednesday would receive more raffle entries will no longer be in effect. Of the 800+ solutions I received about 75% were submitted on Wednesday, making it seem silly to offer an incentive for turning in a solution earlier. Any correct solution submitted between Wednesday and Sunday will have an equal chance to win the raffle.

The puzzles!

Puzzle 1: Vapor Slip

It’s the StarCityGames.com Invitational this weekend, and you are sitting down to play round 1 of Standard. You don’t catch your first opponent’s name, but he introduced himself by saying, "You’ve probably heard of me," and he is wearing a shirt that has "I <3 Caw-Blade" on it in big letters. He wins game 1 by flipping his Delver of Secrets on turn 2, but you crush him in game 2 with your sweet Treacherous Pit-Dwellers leading the way for your Anti-Delver deck.

In game 3, you are able to halt his Geist of Saint Traft with a Treacherous Pit-Dweller, but he uses Phantasmal Image to copy your Geralf’s Messenger and put the pressure back on. On his next turn, he topdecks the Celestial Purge he was looking for to exile your Treacherous Pit-Dweller and swings for what should be lethal. Instead of a handshake, you give your opponent a smirk as you consider the trio of one-mana instants in your hand.

  • It is currently your opponent’s declare attackers step, and he is attacking with a Geist of Saint Traft, a 4/4 Angel token, and a Phantasmal Image (copying Geralf’s Messenger).
  • The opponent has no cards in hand and no flashback cards in his graveyard. His lands are 2 Seachrome Coast (tapped) and one untapped Island.
  • You have:

A Geralf’s Messenger (tapped) and a Phantasmal Image (copying Geralf’s Messenger, tapped).

Two Darkslick Shores and one Swamp, all untapped.

Your cards in hand are Vapor Snag, Vapor Snag, and Tragic Slip, and you have no relevant cards in your graveyard.

Your next draw step will yield a Fume Spitter.

  • You are at 8 life, and your opponent is at 12.
  • How can you both survive this attack and win this game on your next turn?

Winner will receive a signed Vapor Snag!

Puzzle 2: Let Me Introduce You to My Little Friend…

It’s Commander night in your playgroup, and on a whim somebody suggests a tournament. You quickly dispatch Teferi, Mage of Zhalfir / Knowledge Pool and Hazezon Tamar / Warp World decks with Animar, Soul of Elements and find yourself playing for the title against a Jhoira of the Ghitu deck. Your opponent gets off to a quick start, playing Sol Ring and Whispersilk Cloak in the first two turns, but you fight back by casting Animar on turn 3.

After you pass the turn, your opponent casts Show and Tell. While your opponent is bringing an Eldrazi to class in Ulamog, the Infinite Gyre, all you have to put in play is Wild Pair. Your opponent equips Whispersilk Cloak to Ulamog and passes the turn. You draw a Trinket Mage, nod, and begin to scoop up your cards, but then you wonder…

How insane is Wild Pair? There’s no harm in finding out…

  • Swing for lethal (21 general damage or 40 total damage) this turn.

Winner will receive a signed Wild Pair!

If you have any ideas for future puzzles, I’d love to hear from you! Just send me an email at [email protected], and I’ll check it out. That’s all for this week, so have fun with these and I’ll see you next Wednesday!

Dayv Doberne

@Sunyveil on Twitter