How Magic Cards work
Djinn of Wishes

Djinn of Wishes Russian

Last Modified 29.03.2020

Djinn of Wishes inevitably brings up questions about playing cards: can I play a land; can I play a sorcery during the opponent`s turn and etc. Today we will closely look all types of effects, which allow us to play a card, and figure out which ones ignore normal casting timings and which are not. Also, we will tell you how to identify if you can play a land, based on the text of the effect.

Djinn of Wishes

Oracle Text:

Creature — Djinn


Djinn of Wishes enters the battlefield with three wish counters on it.

2UU, Remove a wish counter from Djinn of Wishes: Reveal the top card of your library. You may play that card without paying its mana cost. If you don't, exile it.

So, Djinn of wishes — is a blue creature with three abilities.

The first one is Flying — we know it very well. It restricts some creatures from blocking Djinn of Wishes.

The Second one generates the replacement effect, which changes how Djinn of Wishes enters the battlefield. No matter how Djinn of Wishes enters the battlefield, it enters the battlefield with three wish counters on it. It will happen if you cast Djinn of Wishes and it will enter the battlefield on its spell resolution. Same thing will happen if it entered the battlefield as a result of some kind of effect. If you blink, Djinn of Wishes, it will lose all the counters, which it had before and will get three new shiny wish counters when it enters the battlefield.

Phyrexian Metamorph

If Clone enters the battlefield as a copy of Djinn of Wishes, it will get wish counters too.

Lazav, the Multifarious

If Clone became a copy of Djinn of Wishes, and it has been on the battlefield already, it will not get any counters.

Finally, the third and the most interesting ability of Djinn of Wishes is an activated one. In its cost there are no tap or untap symbols, therefore, game does not care how long you have been controlling Djinn. Simply, you can activate this ability as soon as you get Djinn of Wishes on the battlefield. You can activate it any time you have a priority and during opponent`s turn as well.

You can activate this ability any amount of times on a raw, while you can play it`s cost. Because there are only 3 wish counters and removing them is a part of the cost, usually, you have only three available activations.

Doubling Season
Steady Progress

You can get more counters with help from a Doubling Season, Proliferate ability and any kind of subterfuges, like Cloudshift.

Djinn of Wishes' ability refers to it by its name, thus it means exactly the Djinn, which ability has been activated and not any other Djinn. It does not matter what is its current name when you activate its ability.

After activating ability, it does not depend on its source; therefore, if a cunning opponent kills your Djinn of Wishes in response to its ability activation, this ability will remain on the stack and will resolve under suitable conditions.

Now let us move to the most interesting part. On the ability`s resolution you reveal the top card of your library and decide do you want to cast it or not. Because there is a phrase “reveal the top card”, everyone including your opponents will see that card.

Courser of Kruphix

If there is an effect on the game, which allow you to play with an open top card of your library you will not reveal next card until you finish resolving Djinn of Wishes' ability.

Important: because Djinn of Wishes has a word Play in its ability text, it means both cast a spell and a special action — playing a land.

If in the text of effect, you see only cast, that effect allow you only to cast a spell. You cannot play lands in this case.

Windbrisk Heights

“Hideway with Windbrisk Heights”, allow us to play later both lands and spells.

Daxos of Meletis

An expression «Cast a card» refers only to spells.

Another important moment is that you have an opportunity to play a card as Djinn of Wishes’ ability resoles. This means here and now, not some time later. You have a strict timing: during ability resolution. Later will be too late.

Effects from abilities of Daxos of Meletis, Fiend of the Shadows, Dark-Dweller Oracle, Mission Briefing, Thief of Sanity etc. Allow to cast cards during some period. Usually, it is the way how static abilities are formulated, which apply all the time. It also can be a continuous effect from spells and abilities, which has been created on spell or ability resolution, which are applied until the end of the phase, turn or even game. Game does not dictate you to cast anything right now.

If we imagine game bureaucracy, it will be a building with only two windows: “here and now” and “all the rest”

Casting a spell on ability or spell resolution.

Effects “here and now” ignore all normal timings. You can cast a sorcery spell and a creature (even though the stack is not empty!) whenever the ability resolution is — even during your opponent’s turn.

There are two exceptions for this kind of effects:

  1. 1. You cannot play a land during your opponent’s turn
    You can play a land during your turn if you have not played a land this turn or there is an effect, which allow you to play an additional land (Azusa, Lost but Seeking).
  2. 2. You cannot ignore timings if they a specified on the card’s text. For example, Master Warcraft has to be cast before creatures has been declared attacking in the first combat step.

You can cast that card until the end of the turn

Effects, which allow you to cast cards during a period (usually, until the end of the turn) does not allow you to ignore time restrictions, which are dictated by the game rules:

  • All types of spells, except instants, you can canst only during your main phase, while you have a priority and the stack is empty;
  • You can cast instant spells any time you have a priority.
Teferi, Mage of Zhalfir

If your opponent controls Teferi, Mage of Zhalfir, you cannot play any cards using Djinn of the Wishes’ ability.

307.5 If a spell, ability, or effect states that a player can do something only “any time they could cast a sorcery,” it means only that the player must have priority, it must be during the main phase of their turn, and the stack must be empty

Remember, that when you play a card on Djinn of the Wishes ability resolution, the ability is still on the stack and you do not have a priority.

Casting a spell on Djinn of the Wishes ability resolution is happening by all the rules: you put a spell on the stack, make all the necessary choices, choose targets, define additional costs and calculate total cost.

Total cost this time will be combined with an alternative (without playing its mana-cost) and all the additional costs, where all increasing a cost effects will be applied first and then all decreasing effects apply. Due to a fact, that you use an alternative cost from the beginning you cannot choose any other alternative costs. However, you have to pay all the obligatory additional costs and you can choose not to pay optional ones.

If there is a variable in a spell's mana-cost, for example X, and an exact number is not defined by the card text, you can only choose 0 as X.

Severed Strands

If on Djinn of the Wishes ability`s resolution you want to cast Severed Strands you would have to sacrifice a creature as an additional cost.

Thalia, Guardian of Thraben

Casting Assassin's Trophy while there is a Thalia on the battlefield you have to pay additional {1}, because this “tax” is not in mana-cost. It defines total cost.


You cannot choose X unequal 0, but you can choose more than one target for Fireball and pay additional cost. For instance, you can do it to fight with a bunch of Phantasmal Bear.

After the spell is cast, Djinn of Wishes' ability is removed from the stack and you get a priority. When you pass your opponents will receive a priority. They can have a response to your spell. For example, they can play a counter spell or do something with your targets.

If you decide not to play a revealed card or simply cannot do that (for example, there are no legal targets for a spell or it’s a land during your opponent`s turn or it’s a Mind Grind and you cannot choose X=0), that card will be exiled. Face up and forever and ever and ever…

Best friends of Djinn of Wishes


Cards, which allow getting more wish counters.


Cards, which allow putting something you need on the top of your library.

Emrakul, the Aeons Torn

Creatures from hell, which cost a lot of mana, which give you something useful when you cast them.

Melek, Izzet Paragon

Firstly, Melek, Izzet Paragon shows you what is on top of your library; secondly, it doubles played on the Djinn of Wishes` ability resolution instant and sorcery spells.

By the way, you will have two opportunities to play instant or sorcery spell from the top of your library: because of Melek`s mana-cost without playing its mana-cost and on a resolution od Djinn of the Wishes` ability. In the first case scenario, you can choose to lay any number as X in mana-cost. :)

That is all, folks! I hope that from now on you can easily tell the difference between effects, which allow to cast a sorcery spell not on your turn and which are not.

  1. To blink (slang) — to exile and bring back right away a permanent on the battlefield.

Translated by Aleksandra Ladygina