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Sphinx's Revelation #15: A Pikula Special

Welcome back to this week's puzzle! For the solution to our last puzzle, Storm's A-Comin', click here to scroll to the bottom.

It's the last round of the 2004 Pro Tour Swiss, and the winner makes Top 8. Sitting across from you is Mike, your opponent for this round. The beats have been coming at you in the form of Skyreach Manta and Opaline Bracers. Sitting at four life, you have one more draw step, and you top deck the Mountain you needed! But is it enough?

You just started your first main phase and haven't played a land this turn. Defeat Mike before the end of your turn without losing!

The Puzzle

(click to enlarge)

Sphinx's Revelation #15: A Pikula Special

Opponent: Earl

Earl is at 14 life, with no cards in hand. On board he has:


You are at 4 life, and in your first main phase. On board you have:

the following cards in hand:


Post any solutions you come up with in the comments section and be sure to check back soon for the next puzzle! Remember you can reach Jordan via Twitter, @adjunctmagician and email,

Sphinx's Revelation #14 Solution

1. First Main Phase

  • Cast Dark Ritual, tapping Swamp and Underground Sea’s for mana. BBB floating. Storm count = 1. 
  • Cast Lotus Petal for B. BB floating. Storm count = 2. 
  • Activate Lotus Petal and sacrifice it to add G. BBG floating.
  • Activate Polluted Delta and sacrifice it to find another Underground Sea. 
  • We now have seven cards in our graveyard, threshold activated!
  • Cast Cabal Ritual, tapping the last Underground Sea for BBB. G floating. Resolves, we now have BBBBBG floating. Storm count = 3. 
  • Cast Abrupt Decay for BBG, targeting Thalia, Guardian of Thraben. BBB floating. Storm count  = 4. 
  • Cast Lotus Petal and Lion’s Eye Diamond. Storm count = 6. 
  • Activate Lion’s Eye Diamond, Discarding our hand, and Sacrificing it to add RRR to our mana pool. BBBRRR floating. 
  • Flashback Past in Flames for RRRBB. B floating. Storm count = 7
  • Flashback Dark Ritual for B. BBB floating. Storm count = 8. 
  • Flashback Dark Ritual for B. BBBBB floating. Storm count = 9.
  • Flashback Cabal Ritual for BB. BBBBBBBB floating. Storm count = 10. 
  • Flashback Infernal Tutor for BB to search for Chain of Vapor. BBBBBB floating. Storm count = 11. 
  • Cast Chain of Vapor targeting Leyline of Sanctity with the last Lotus Petal. BBBBBB floating. Storm count = 12. 
  • Flashback Infernal Tutor for BB to search for Tendrils of Agony. BBBB floating. Storm count = 13. 
  • Cast Tendrils of Agony targeting Jeff. Resolves 14 times for lethal damage. 

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