Sunforger has a ruling that you have to find a castable card. But what exactly governs this? I don't suppose there's a written rule in the comprehensive rules.
And how does that work with the fact that sometimes we don't know if the card is castable until we start to cast it? it seems that for Sunforger we don't just reverse back to before we cast the card, but also before the search which seems quite exceptional.
(edit: fixed the last sentence)
Is this actually a problem? If you start to cast a spell from your hand and it's uncastable, you rewind to before you cast the spell and it goes back to your hand. If you attempt to cast an uncastable spell with Sunforger, wouldn't the spell just return to your library? Or is this an issue of whether or not you then get to try and cast something else from your library?
Edit: Hmm, after doing a little bit of searching, it looks like any effect other than Suspend that allows you to cast something without paying its mana cost either says "you may" or "if able", so maybe Sunforger's template should be updated to follow this convention. "You may" seems more appropriate, since even if the card currently forces you to cast the spell, you can always opt not to find one in the search.
As far as being parctical, this ruling is anything but a problem, it works great and offers a good solution for this effect. It helps to convey that what the effect is actually saying is "cast a a card from your library which is so-and-so".
What may be problematic, however, is that the exceptional way in which it works doesn't seem to be mentioned by the comprehensive rules, Sunforger's oracle or the way we usually iterpret a card's instructions. Just following the CR and the oracle make the instruction sound like you should first find a card and then attempt to cast it, and if you can't cast it you're stuck with the card you found because you can't reverese back to before you searched.
In the CR, rule 601.2 tells us only to reverse illegaly cast spells to a "moment before" the spell was cast. And 717.2 only explains how you're allowed to choose another option.
quoted rules Show
601.2. To cast a spell is to take it from where it is (usually the hand), put it on the stack, and pay its costs, so that it will eventually resolve and have its effect. Casting a spell follows the steps listed below, in order. If, at any point during the casting of a spell, a player is unable to comply with any of the steps listed below, the casting of the spell is illegal; the game returns to the moment before that spell started to be cast (see rule 717, "Handling Illegal Actions"). Announcements and payments can't be altered after they've been made.
717.2. When reversing illegal spells and abilities, the player who had priority retains it and may take another action or pass. The player may redo the reversed action in a legal way or take any other action allowed by the rules.
With that said, I'm starting to think I misunderstanding what "searching" really is. I probably shouldn't connect it with finding, rather, it's the action that comes later that is connected with finding. In that sense, when you're reversing the casting, you go back to before you found the card. "search for [something] and cast it" should probably be iterpreted as "look at your library, cast a [something] from it, stop looking at your library".
I believe the ruling may simply be clarifying that an uncastable card will never leave your library and will therefore be shuffled back in. Casting directly from the library is unusual, so some people might think the card goes to your hand first, in which case they might think that Sunforger could be used as a weird sideways tutor for something uncastable. The ruling clarifies that that doesn't work.
Hmm, from what I see in the ruling:
I think the reasonable assumption reading the text would be that you search for any red or white instant card with converted mana cost 4 or less and then you cast it. Since it never left the library, if you can't cast it, it will still be there when it's shuffled. I know not a lot of cards let you cast things from your library, but I don't see the need for extra rulings, especially if they introduce ambiguous concepts like "castable".
Your point sounds reasonable. I guess this won't matter unless some weird rule/effect that forces you to find a card will be created in the future.
But searching in itself doesn't restrict your "finding options" to castable cards. I suppose that when regarding sunforger's instruction as saiying "cast [something] from library" there is a choice and 608.2d applies, but knowing that you're supposed to regard it as such is not so clear from the printed text, the CR or the rulings for the card.
Right. The library is still a hidden zone even if all cards in it are revealed.
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