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Split second

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Split second
Type: Static
Introduced: Time Spiral
Last Used: Future Sight
Reminder Text: As long as this spell is on the stack, players can't cast spells or activate abilities that aren't mana abilities.
Statistics: 15 cards
Manar.gif27% Manab.gif20% Manau.gif20% Manag.gif20% Manaw.gif13%
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Split second is a static ability that essentially makes a spell uncounterable. It works by not allowing any players to put any spell or activated ability on the stack as long as the spell with Split second is on the stack.

History[edit]

Split second was introduced in Time Spiral. [1] [2] Two cards with split second appeared in Planar Chaos [3] and three in Future Sight.

A historical note is that, in a way, Split second harkens back to Interrupts, which also couldn't be responded to with instants or activated abilities, only other interrupts.

Rules[edit]

From the Comprehensive Rules:

  • 702.60. Split second
    • 702.60a Split second is a static ability that functions only while the spell with split second is on the stack. "Split second" means "As long as this spell is on the stack, players can’t cast other spells or activate abilities that aren’t mana abilities."
    • 702.60b Players may activate mana abilities and take special actions while a spell with split second is on the stack. Triggered abilities trigger and are put on the stack as normal while a spell with split second is on the stack.
    • 702.60c Multiple instances of Split second on the same spell are redundant.

Rulings[edit]

  • Players still get priority while a card with split second is on the stack.
  • Split second doesn't prevent players from playing mana abilities.
  • Split second doesn't prevent triggered abilities from triggering. If one does, its controller puts it on the stack and, if applicable, chooses targets for it. Those abilities will resolve as normal.
  • Split second doesn't prevent players from performing special actions. Most notably, players may turn face-down creatures face up while a spell with split second is on the stack. For example, if Sudden Death is targetting a creature you control, you may flip up a Willbender to change the target of Sudden Death to another creature.
  • Split second won't affect spells and abilities that are already on the stack.
  • If the resolution of a triggered ability involves casting a spell, that part of the effect won't work if a spell with split second is on the stack.

Example[edit]

  • Sudden Death - Mana1.gifManab.gifManab.gif
    Instant
    Split second (As long as this spell is on the stack, players can't cast spells or activate abilities that aren't mana abilities.)
    Target creature gets -4/-4 until end of turn.

References[edit]

  1. Mark Rosewater. (September 18, 2006.) "Plenty of Time", Daily MTG, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
  2. Magic Arcana. (October 09, 2006.) "Split Second Visual Cue", Daily MTG, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
  3. Magic Arcana. (February 20, 2007.) "Extirpate Sketches", Daily MTG, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.