Can you scavenge as an instant?

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Hello everyone. I'm new to the game, only been in it for a couple weeks. Last Saturday, I was having a friendly match at my local comic shop, and the following incurred: 

I had Deadbridge Goliath in my graveyeard. I was curious if I could use his scavenge ability to add a +10/+10 counter onto Lotleth troll (Corpsejack was on the field) on my oppopnents turn. I asked somebody at the store, and they said that I could scavenge on my opponents turn as long as the "stack is empty"? Does that mean I can scavenege on my opponents turn, or at any time, for that matter, as long as there is nothing to counter it? 

I know it's an ability, but it says on the card that it can only be used as a sorcery. But, can't sorcercys only be used on your own turn? I'm very confused. Any help would be greatly, greatly appreciated.  
Hello everyone. I'm new to the game, only been in it for a couple weeks. Last Saturday, I was having a friendly match at my local comic shop, and the following incurred: 

I had Deadbridge Goliath in my graveyeard. I was curious if I could use his scavenge ability to add a +10/+10 counter onto Lotleth troll (Corpsejack was on the field) on my oppopnents turn. I asked somebody at the store, and they said that I could scavenge on my opponents turn as long as the "stack is empty"? Does that mean I can scavenege on my opponents turn, or at any time, for that matter, as long as there is nothing to counter it? 

I know it's an ability, but it says on the card that it can only be used as a sorcery. But, can't sorcercys only be used on your own turn? I'm very confused. Any help would be greatly, greatly appreciated.  



You can only use it on your turn, when the stack is empty, and you have priority.  It's not a sorcery, but it follows the same rules as sorceries for when you can use it.
Scavenge can only be activated at "sorcery timing"
that means your main phase and empty stack
proud member of the 2011 community team
I had Deadbridge Goliath in my graveyeard. I was curious if I could use his scavenge ability to add a +10/+10 counter onto Lotleth troll (Corpsejack was on the field) on my oppopnents turn.


First of all, you wouldn't add a +10/+10 counter, you would add ten +1/+1 counters.  It's important to remember that each counter is individual.
I asked somebody at the store, and they said that I could scavenge on my opponents turn as long as the "stack is empty"?


Whoever you asked was wrong.  Read the reminder text on scavange on your card.  The last sentence is, "Scavange only as a sorcery."  This means that you can only do it on your turn during one of your main phases and while the stack is empty.  An empty stack means that there are no spells or abilities that are currently trying to resolve.

Rules Advisor

I had Deadbridge Goliath in my graveyeard. I was curious if I could use his scavenge ability to add a +10/+10 counter onto Lotleth troll (Corpsejack was on the field) on my oppopnents turn.


First of all, you wouldn't add a +10/+10 counter, you would add ten +1/+1 counters.  It's important to remember that each counter is individual.
I asked somebody at the store, and they said that I could scavenge on my opponents turn as long as the "stack is empty"?


Whoever you asked was wrong.  Read the reminder text on scavange on your card.  The last sentence is, "Scavange only as a sorcery."  This means that you can only do it on your turn during one of your main phases and while the stack is empty.  An empty stack means that there are no spells or abilities that are currently trying to resolve.

Why is it important to remember that each counter is an individual +1/+1? I don't know, but I'm curious. 
because +1/+1 and -1/-1 counters annihilate each other
no other counters do that

it's not relevant in Standard right now, but it is in other formats
proud member of the 2011 community team
It's also relevant with many effects that, say, move +1/+1 counters from one creature to another.  Which is relevant in standard right now.
The best example I can think of off the top of my head is proliferate.  To "proliferate," you look at all the counters on a permanent, choose one of them, and add another one of those counters to that permanent.  If you have a 5/5 with ten +1/+1 counters on it and you proliferate, it will have eleven +1/+1 counters, making it a 16/16.  However, if you have a 5/5 with one +10/+10 counter on it and proliferate, then you'd end up with a 5/5 with two +10/+10 counters on it, making it a 25/25.

There are also cards out there that may move or reduce counters, and you don't want your +10/+10 counter taken away.  You'd rather just lose one of your ten +1/+1 counters.

Rules Advisor

There are also a lot of cards that care specifically about +1/+1 counters. For example, Crowned Ceratok will give creatures with +1/+1 counters trample, but it won't do so if they only have +10/+10 counters. Also, a Rakdos Cackler with only a +10/+10 counter on it can still block, while one with a +1/+1 counter on it can't.

In modern design, the only P/T counters they use are +1/+1 and (more rarely) -1/-1. On older cards, however, they used a number of other such counters. It makes a difference that Baron Sengir gets a +2/+2 counter instead of two +1/+1 counters.
Various current-relevant examples from a quick Gatherer search of Standard cards with the word counter on them (damn you word for having two meanings!) - cards that would behave significantly diferently if "place ten +1/+1 counters" were replaced with "place one +10/+10 counter".

 
Bioshift
Corpsejack Menace
Crowned Ceratok 
Fathom Mage
Herald of War
Hindervines
etcetcetc 
I see. Very, very helpful examples. Thanks!
Note that while things say "when you could cast a sorcery", that actually has nothing to do with when you can cast sorceries (its just code for "in one of your own main phases, while the stack is empty and you have priority"). Changing when you can cast sorceries (using Leyline of Anticipation for example) doesnt change when you can Scavenge.

~ Tim
I am Blue/White Reached DCI Rating 1800 on 28/10/11. :D
Sig
56287226 wrote:
190106923 wrote:
Not bad. But what happens flavor wise when one kamahl kills the other one?
Zis iz a sign uf deep psychological troma, buried in zer subconscious mind. By keelink himzelf, Kamahl iz physically expressink hiz feelinks uf self-disgust ova hiz desire for hiz muzzer. [/GermanPsychologistVoice]
56957928 wrote:
57799958 wrote:
That makes no sense to me. If they spelled the ability out on the card in full then it would not be allowed in a mono-black Commander deck, but because they used a keyword to save space it is allowed? ~ Tim
Yup, just like you can have Birds of paradise in a mono green deck but not Noble Hierarch. YAY COLOR IDENTITY
56287226 wrote:
56888618 wrote:
Is algebra really that difficult?
Survey says yes.
56883218 wrote:
57799958 wrote:
You want to make a milky drink. You squeeze a cow.
I love this description. Like the cows are sponges filled with milk. I can see it all Nick Parks claymation-style with the cow's eyes bugging out momentarily as a giant farmer squeezes it like a squeaky dog toy, and milk shoots out of it.
56287226 wrote:
56735468 wrote:
And no judge will ever give you a game loss for playing snow covered lands.
I now have a new goal in life. ;)
Oh! there's a rule for that!

602.5d Activated abilities that read “Activate this ability only any time you could cast a sorcery” mean the player must follow the timing rules for casting a sorcery spell, though the ability isn’t actually a sorcery. The player doesn’t actually need to have a sorcery card that he or she could cast.

602.5e Activated abilities that read “Activate this ability only any time you could cast an instant” mean the player must follow the timing rules for casting an instant spell, though the ability isn’t actually an instant. The player doesn’t actually need to have an instant card that he or she could cast.

Wizards of the Coast: NOT ANYMORE outsourced to Elbonia

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