Magic: the Gathering Duels of the Planeswalkers 2013 – Challenges Guide

Welcome to our Challenges & Encounters guide, two of the key returning features in Magic 2013! This page is for the Challenges, Encounters can be found here. As they were in the past, these puzzles require you to solve intricate victory solutions from abysmal situations. Most of these puzzles require you to win during that one turn, making this a very small, difficult piece of Magic strategy. Since these are puzzles, however, we can solve them the exact same way every time! As such, each solution will be in step by step format, so you can't possibly miss a beat.

Important: We strongly advise you either view every step before trying these, or you stop the timer after each move, as some steps are between individual card plays rather than entire turn phases.

Again, there are 10 Encounters to go along with the 10 challenges, so if you want solutions or help with those, head on over to the Encounters guide page.

1. Reverse the Assault

  1. Block the Deadly Recluse with the Dragon Hatchling
  2. Block the Sentinel Spider with the Goblin Piker (leaves you with 1 health)
  3. Your turn
  4. Cast Act of Treason on the Sentinel Spider (removes all possible blockers)
  5. Move to Combat phase
  6. Attack with both creatures
  7. After combat is over, cast Fling on Sentinel Spider (win)

2. Exalted Army

  1. Play Pacifism on Rune-Scarred Demon
  2. Play Pacifism on the white Serra Angel (it actually doesn't matter which two you play Pacifism  on)
  3. Play Seize the Initiative on Skyhunter Skirmisher (total of 14 damage means he can't block enough)
  4. Move to Combat phase
  5. Attack with all creatures (win)

3. Drake Expectations

  1. Play Sage Owl
  2. Select cards in this order: Blaze, Furnace of Rath, Mountain, Time Warp
  3. Play Time Warp and select yourself
  4. End your turn
  5. Play Time Warp and select yourself
  6. Immediately copy the spell with Reverberate (maximum additional turns)
  7. Again select yourself (this may seem obvious but some challenges get pretty crazy with this kind of stuff)
  8. Play Mountain
  9. Play both Talrand's Invocations (gets the drakes out so they won't have summoning sickness next turn)
  10. End your turn
  11. Play Furnace of Rath (double damage for everything)
  12. Play Rupture and select the newly summoned Drake token (this one can't attack, you'll need everyone else, so sacrifice this one)
  13. Move to Combat phase
  14. Attack with everyone (win)

4. Stolen Goods

  1. Play the Plains
  2. Equip Lightning Greaves to Leatherback Baloth (necessary for following steps)
  3. Equip Ring of Kalonia to Garruk's Packleader (necessary to do damage after being blocked)
  4. Equip Lightning Greaves back on Garruk's Packleader (prevents Pit Trap)
  5. Move to Combat phase
  6. Attack with Garruk's Packleader (Cudgel Troll will block)
  7. Once blocked (before combat damage is dealt), play Divine Verdict on Cudgel Troll (win — the 4 damage goes through due to trample, where-as without Trample the creature would still be considered blocked, and no damage would go through)

5. Obliterate This!

  1. Cast Cloudshift on War Priest of Thune (removes arrest, frees up other creature)
  2. Select the Arrest attached to Flayer of the Hatebound
  3. Move to Combat phase
  4. Attack with Flayer of the Hatebound
  5. After he blocks  (before combat damage is dealt), cast Seize the Initiative on Flayer of the Hatebound (destroys enemy, forces sacrifice)
  6. Immediately (before combat damage is dealt) cast Undying Evil on Oxidda Scrapmelter (takes advantage of Flayer of the Hatebound)
  7. Choose to sacrifice Rage Nimbus, Oxidda Scrapmelter, Flayer of the Hatebound, and two Swamps.
  8. Select Liliana for Flayer of the Hatebound's ability
  9. When Oxidda Scrapmelter comes back into play, select the Lumengrid Gargoyle to destroy it (remove other blocker)
  10. Select Liliana for Flayer of the Hatebound's ability the second time
  11. End your turn
  12. Liliana ends her turn
  13. Move to Combat phase
  14. Attack with all creatures (win)

6. Say Your Praetors — All five methods

White Praetor — Elesh Norn

  1. Block Elesh Norn with Baneslayer Angel
  2. Immediately (before combat damage is dealt) cast Giant Growth and Brute Force on Baneslayer Angel (defeat white praetor, remove -2/-2 to your creatures)
  3. Sacrifice Baneslayer Angel
  4. Play Spark Elemental (has haste already)
  5. Cast Veteran's Reflexes on Spark Elemental (untap and +1/+1 for sufficient damage)
  6. Move to Combat phase
  7. Attack with Spark Elemental (win)

Green Praetor — Vorinclax

  1. Block Vorinclax with Baneslayer Angel
  2. Immediately (before combat damage is dealt) play Giant Growth and Brute Force on Baneslayer Angel (regain ability to untap land)
  3. Sacrifice Baneslayer Angel
  4. Jace will play Thought Scour
  5. Immediately after, play Parallectric Feedback and select Thought Scour
  6. Play Sizzle (win)

Red Praetor — Urabrask

  1. Block Urabrask with Baneslayer Angel
  2. Immediately (before combat damage is dealt) play Giant Growth on Baneslayer Angel (creatures no longer enter play tapped)
  3. Sacrifice Baneslayer Angel
  4. Play Avatar of Hope
  5. Play Burst of Speed (so Avatar of Hope can attack)
  6. Play Brute Force on Avatar of Hope
  7. Move to Combat phase
  8. Attack with Avatar of Hope (win)

Black Praetor — Sheoldred

  1. Block Sheoldred with Baneslayer Angel
  2. Immediately (before combat damage is dealt) play Giant Growth and Brute Force on Baneslayer Angel (you no longer have to sacrifice a creature)
  3. Move to Combat phase
  4. Attack with Baneslayer Angel
  5. Wait for Jace to play Leaf Arrow (he'll do this at the very end of the timer, don't worry you'll have plenty of time to react)
  6. Immediately after that (before Leaf Arrow deals damage), play Veteran's Reflexes on Baneslayer Angel (you have to wait for him to play the card so your reaction in-steps between his instant and the attack — it's kind of complicated)

Blue Praetor — Jin-Gitaxias

  1. Block Jin-Gitaxias with Baneslayer Angel
  2. Immediately (before combat damage is dealt) play Brute Force on Baneslayer Angel (Jace no longer draws cards, so you no longer discard cards)
  3. Sacrifice Baneslayer Angel
  4. Play Avatar of Might
  5. Cast Veteran's Reflexes on Avatar of Might (untap)
  6. Play Burst of Speed (grant haste)
  7. Cast Niveous Wisps on Elesh Norn (can't block)
  8. Move to Combat phase
  9. Attack with Avatar of Might (win)

7. Desperate Measures

  1. Play Phyrexian Processor 
  2. Sacrifice 7 life (this sets you up to destroy the enemy creatures without destroying Death's Shadow)
  3. Play Earthquake 
  4. Use 4 mana, leave one Plains (destroys the enemy's green creatures)
  5. Cast Faith's Shield
  6. Pick which ever creature you want (it doesn't matter since they'll both be protected)
  7. Choose blue (allows you attack unhindered)
  8. Move to Combat phase
  9. Attack with both creatures (win)

8. Sculpting the Perfect Warrior

  1. Play Sculpting Steel
  2. Select Batterskull (spawns the second germ)
  3. Draw a card
  4. Equip the unequipped Batterskull to the Germ with Mortarpod attached to it (gives it lifelink)
  5. Sacrifice that same Germ (via Mortarpod's ability) and deal 1 damage to the Porcelain Legionnaire
  6. Attach Mortarpod to the other Germ (the one which already has Batterskull equipped to it)
  7. Repeat step 5 with this germ (destroys the opposing creature)
  8. Play Phyrexian Metamorph as a copy of Puresteel Paladin
  9. Equip all available equipment except Mortarpod to the new Puresteel Paladin.
  10. Play Darksteel Axe
  11. Draw two cards
  12. Play Sword of Feast and Famine
  13. Draw two cards
  14. Equip the two new equipment to the new Puresteel Paladin
  15. Move to Combat phase
  16. Attack with Puresteel Paladin (deal 17 damage, untap all lands)
  17. Play the Island
  18. Play Repulse on the arrested Puresteel Paladin (removes Arrest)
  19. Play the Puresteel Paladin back to the field
  20. Return the Sculpted Steel Batterskull back to your hand, it's noted by a two-card symbol on the card
  21. Play Sculpting Steel as Mortarpod (spawn a Germ)
  22. Draw two cards
  23. Equip each Mortarpod to each Puresteel Paladin, and leave one attached to the Germ
  24. Sacrifice all three creatures with Odric as the target (win)

9. Replica's Revolt

  1. Play Rite of Replication with the kicker on Archaeomancer (retrieve additional cards)
  2. Pick EACH Rite of Replication (note: you cannot pick the same one three times), and two other cards (it doesn't matter which)
  3. Play a Rite of Replication with the kicker on a Forest (to pay for Ursapine)
  4. Play another Rite of Replication on Ursapine
  5. Play the last Rite of Replication on Acidic Slime (to destroy Nature's Revolt)
  6. Destroy Nature's Revolt
  7. Use Ursapine's ability on your Archaenomancer without summoning sickness five times.
  8. Move to Combat phase
  9. Attack with Archaenomancer (win)

10. Goblin Raiding

  1. Play Goblin Ringleader
  2. Activate Temple Bell's ability (these two moves get you Chandra's Fury)
  3. Move to Combat phase
  4. Attack with all creatures
  5. Wait for the enemy to assign blockers
  6. Before combat damage is dealt, play Chandra's Fury and target yourself (the enemies have Lifelink, if you don't kill the enemies they block you'll lose; this kills Goblin Artificer)
  7. Choose a blocked Goblin Raider to deal 1 damage to (because Goblin Artificer died)
  8. Immediately after (before combat damage is dealt), play Gut Shot, target the other blocked Goblin Raider (win)

To Encounters

 (before combat damage is dealt)

About Todd Schlickbernd

I've been writing off and on since High School and finally decided to try and write for a site; now I write for XBLA Fans. I'm a huge fan of breaking games down into their smaller pieces, and as such I do that as often as possible, with or without a sledge hammer. Writing is fun and I intend to have fun with my writing. And smashing.