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13th Time's the Charm

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Challenge

Win the game as quickly as possible using only cards from Magic 2013. (A visual spoiler can be found here.)

You have perfect luck. For example, even after you shuffle your library, it’s ordered how you want. You may not assume anything about your opponent’s hand or library except that he won’t do anything relevant.

Winning “quickly” refers to both the turn of the game and whether you’re playing or drawing first. Turn three on the draw is quicker than turn four on the play but not as quick as turn three on the play.

You may only use four copies of any individual card.

Send your solutions to nex342+puzzle at gmail dot com with the subject line “Puzzle – 13th Time’s the Charm”, and I’ll include the best ones in next week’s article along with the next puzzle!

Good luck!

Solution to Last Week’s Puzzle

There were many diverse solutions to last week’s puzzle. Here are a few that I like the most.

Steve Guillerm, who was the first to submit a solution, used Laboratory Maniac as the win condition. He had both players start with the Maniac, Lich, and Transcendence on the battlefield and no cards in their libraries. Then, one player casts Menacing Ogre. Whoever chooses the highest number loses life, which is turned into life-gain via Transcendence, then card-draw via Lich, and finally a win via Laboratory Maniac.

Rast’s solution used Celestial Convergence as the win condition instead. He had both players start with two Children of Korlis and a Soul Echo with 1 counter. In addition, you control Teferi, Mage of Zhalfir and Celestial Convergence with 1 counter. Both players have 20 life. During your upkeep, Celestial Convergence and Soul Echo both trigger. In response, both players sacrifice their Children of Korlis, and with those abilities on the stack, you cast Menacing Ogre. Whichever player chooses a higher number will end up gaining that much life and thus winning via Convergence.

Seth managed to solve it without using Menacing Ogre at all; he used Illicit Auction instead. While bidding isn’t exactly the same as choosing a number, the solution is certainly in the spirit of the puzzle. He had the opponent begin at 0 life, controlling Platinum Angel and Grand Melee, while you began at 1 with no nonland permanents. You then cast Illicit Auction on the Angel. If you win the auction, the opponent loses immediately for having 0 life. If the opponent wins and you bid more than 0 life, you lose immediately. If you bid 0 life, you win next turn when the opponent attacks for lethal with the angel.

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