Invasive Surgery - Shadows over Innistrad Spoiler

Invasive Surgery



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Counter target sorcery spell.

Delirium — If there are four or more card types among cards in your graveyard, search the graveyard, hand, and library of that spell’s controller for any number of cards with the same name as that spell, exile those cards, then that player shuffles his or her library.



  • MrAptronym

    This is so specific, and Delerium seems pretty hard to count on… but at the same time there is a lot of potential here. I am not sure what to make of this card. Its either really bad or pretty good and I just do not know.

    • wwww

      Delirium power depends on the format. It might be too slow for Standard (especially because fetches from KoT will rotate out), but okay for Modern and Legacy.

    • Melissa Juice

      It’s probably a nasty sideboard card.

      • MrAptronym

        It could be, but it still seems a bit narrow.

    • Kahai

      UB will likely see the most printing of the Word, they are the colors of self mill. Dreadwaters will be in standard even if we don’t see a reprint. Enabling this doesn’t seem that hard. We also have a creature who specifically has you discarding a land, and i’m sure we will see plenty of Madness on non-permanents.

      Though in the high likelihood that red will be looting, and Grixis seems like the Delirium colors. :D

      • MrAptronym

        I’m still not a fan yet. It requires a certain mix of cards, and making sure that they end up in the graveyard in the right mix. In a format with Tribal, Artifact Creatures or Enchantment creatures, it looks better, but standard is pretty lacking in all of those. Even then its enough of a mix that I am just not sold on the abilities I see for the tolls on deckbuilding it can take to enable it.
        There are a few decent mill cards in Origins I guess, but BFZ is devoid of them. (Well, Ulamog I guess, but not helpful here) I wonder how much SOI will provide and how much they will focus on discard instead? I am not a fan of dreadwaters at all.
        In theory Delrium allows you earlier activations and more freedom to play with your graveyard than Threshold… but it also does have certain requirements in deckbuilding and requires some bit of luck or a lot of dedication to activate early. None of the cards so far excite me enough to care. In limited, where people run a large number of creatures, this seems even less reliable.

        • Kahai

          land, artifact, creature, planeswalker, enchantment, instant, sorcery. There are plenty of ways of getting all these in your graveyard, particularly if they plan on supporting Madness, i mean, blue has so much looting right now, you can easily put exactly what you need into your graveyard that it should make Delirium a midrange keyword.

          Obviously, this was an unplanned spoiler, i expect that the planned spoiler would have shown us a keyword, and support for that keyword. Since madness, delirium, look like they play off each other, more over they both relay on self discard and looting.

          • MrAptronym

            Well, outside standard there is Tribal too.
            I know it is feasible, I just am not sure how much it can be counted on or if it is worth building around. If you just throw a card with delirium into a random deck it probably won’t activate very often. Very few decks have an equal mix of card types. When I am looting, these cards don’t push me enough to influence what I discard very much. Plus, BFZ was almost devoid of Artifact creatures. Cards with two types make delirium much more powerful, and they seem purposefully a bit low right now.Maybe that will change in SOI.
            Also, I wouldn’t really say Madness and Delerium play off each other at all. They both work well with discard outlets but that is it. The two mechanics themselves don’t interact.
            There are some mechanics where you need to factor in the conditionals when evaluating the card, but there are others where your best bet is often to treat it like a bonus if it happens. Right now I feel like Delirium on the cards we have seen exists as a nice bonus, but I am not holding up playing a card to get it and I don’t want to build a Delirium deck right now. That could obviously change when we see more than 15 cards.
            If some other strategy emerges that Delirium plays well into I’d be happy to include a couple cards with the ability but for now I am evaluating the cards with the general assumption I will usually be casting them without Delirium active, especially on low CMC cards and doubly on any creatures or things I want to cast on the curve. (Not this)

          • Kahai

            Something MaRo said about abandoning Tribal (since we should have seen it in BFZ if they wanted to continue that theme). And it was actually killed off between Zendikar block and Innistrad, as Innistrad would have been the most tribal set to date had they used the type.

  • Derek Niles

    Thats tempting but it seems like you probably won’t have delirium when you’re casting this and only countering a sorcery is kinda lame. But who knows, this could be good when the meta starts to take shape

    • Logan Hollis

      This isn’t something that you cast early, this is something that you cast late, or feed to JVP when you need it. It is specifically anti-removal.

  • wwww

    Strictly better than Envelop, and that card was already a good sideboard card.

  • Aarhg

    I would have preferred threshold, I think, as it’s a bit more open to work with in deckbuilding, but I might be delirious.

    • eltratzo

      Which is propably why we get this instead. wizards likes narrow constraints on block abilies becuase the breed creativity and challenge dackbuilders more than easy to meet broader conditions.
      it also allows for more powerfull effects if you can satisfy the condition.
      lastly narrow design space is good on abilities that will only see print in one to two sets (4 if they get really lucky) as there is little design space “wasted”. as in there are few fun cards left that could be printed with the ability but aren’t becuase the ability doesn’t fit other sets.
      (addendum one: I really like threshhold, but lets face it: it is ridiculusly easy to fulfill it, if you want to, which drastically limits what wizards can give you in return. )
      (addendum two: I salute your pun. it was finely crafted and perfectly executed ^^)

  • NC

    Anti-boardwipe tech

  • Melissa Juice

    Brutal.

  • Kahai

    UB will likely see the most Delirium. Both colors are self mills. Even if we don’t see a Dreadwaters reprint, it will be in Standard! :D

    • MrAptronym

      I’ll take almost any mill card over Dreadwaters. Hopefully we can get some mill reprints for stuff like Mind Funeral and Glimpse the Unthinkable. They’re thematically fitting and pretty potent.

  • Happy The Cat

    delirium looks cool, but this doesn’t. might see play somewhere in eternal if you dont want to give someone a 2/2 bird with swan song.

    • MrAptronym

      Not hitting instants, and to a lesser extent enchantments, makes this a lot more narrow than swan song though.

      • Happy The Cat

        ah but this doesn’t give them a 2/2 and can cut a combo out of someones deck.
        it isnt going to replace it at all but it could be the poor mans option

        • MrAptronym

          I’d compare it more to Envelop with a potential upside countering instants is a big deal on swan song. The card is used to hit instants more often then sorceries. Its a protective card. I am not all that hot on the upside either right now. First, I think cranial extraction type effects are a bit overrated. They’re better when they’re tacked onto things as they are here, but their usefulness is limited. Second, the effect is limited to sorceries, which makes up a rather tiny slice of useful things to extract. Its cool to hit a miracle with it. Very few decks rely on a sorcery to win though (and those that do are often redundant). Third, you don’t control the timing on this. When you need to cast this you cast it, and that will often be when you don’t have delirium, especially if you are looking at this as a sideboard inclusion in other decks that already exist.

          You have a narrow counter that can hose something incredibly specific when you meet a slightly quirky condition. Its not a bad card really, its a 1CMC counter, but I am not convinced its a good card. (I am also a casual player generally though)

          • Happy The Cat

            look, I’m not saying this is good, but the next time a combo deck like amulet bloom pops up in modern I’m grabbing my playset of these to kill it

          • MrAptronym

            If a sorcery based combo deck shows up and truly becomes dominant then maybe for the sideboard. I am still personally inclined to grab something a bit less narrow. That is my normal leaning though, you might well be right about that.

  • xermaster123

    Great sideboard card, just 1 mana, counter your scapeshift, extract it, not sure exactly where but this card has potential in modern boards.

    • Jade

      It’s definitely going in my UB control sideboard.

  • Zombie

    Sideboard tech for Blue/X against Scapeshift decks.

    “I cast Scapeshift”

    “I pay U and take all of your Scapeshifts away”

    “But I still get the one I cast right?”

    “No, they’re in Combo Jail now. No bail.”

  • Jay

    Utter nonsense in limited but Jesus, can you screw Scapeshift and Miracles any harder?

    • wwww

      Just like Annul screwed Splinter Twin I guess. =’)

  • Timithy Klesick

    Does the delerium trigger still happen if it can’t counter the spell?

    • Absinthman

      That depends on why it can’t counter the spell.
      1. If it can’t caounter because the target of this becomes illegal (e.g. gains hexproof) or no longer exists, then Invasive Surgery will be countered by rules and none of its effects will happen.
      2. On the other hand, if it’s because the spell says “can’t be countered” or such an effect was introduced by other source, it does not mean that the target is illegal. And because Invasive Surgery does not say specifically “if it is countered this way”, it will perform the Delirium effect.