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The Minion Death Pipeline

Death Categories and Keywords

Deaths Squander Spells

The Minion Death Pipeline

Death Categories and Keywords. Sanctum defines four categories of minion and group deaths, with the following precise meanings.


Definition and Effect



There is an attacker to blame.

  • All “if killed” and “when killed” effects are applied.
  • All “when dying” effects are applied.
  • Non-magical combat damage.
  • Combat-triggered spell effects.
  • Weapon-related spells that inflict “extra” points of magical damage during combat.
  • Monsters' special effects.


There is no attacker to blame.

  • All “when dying” effects are applied.
  • Instant-death spells.
  • Damage from spells, spell effects, or terrain.
  • Drowning in water.

“removed from the game”

No effects are applied.

  • Ascension, Cessao Spiral, Dryad's Favors, Shifting Sands, Void.
  • Jumping Land's mountain lands on you.
  • Boardhop spell is dispelled with a group still inside.
  • Moonwalking fails.

“replaced by”

This is simply an abbreviation for two phrases:

Exception: Spells that replace a recruit with another recruit do preserve all group spells (for which the new recruit is a legal target), even if the old recruit was alone in its group!

  • Jade Gargoyle, Odar.

Deaths Squander Spells. Generally, spells in Sanctum don't work on dead entities. If a spell's target is already in the graveyard due to an earlier spell effect, the spell squanders (fails).

  • Death squanders rest. When any minion or group suffers any category of death during spell execution, all subsequent spells that were targeted on that minion or group in the same turn will squander.
  • Replacement squanders, too! When a minion or group is “replaced by” a new minion or group, all subsequent spells targeted on the original minion or group will squander, even if the spell could legally target the new minion or group. Mnemonic: Spells don't switch targets in the middle of spell execution. This applies to the following spells that “replace” their targets.
    • Spells that replace a minion with another minion: None. (Jade Gargoyle doesn't count, because it can't be targeted by individual spells anyways, per its text, so they would squander even without this rule.)
    • Spells that replace a group with another group: Lycanthropy, and dispelling Lycanthropy; Devolution, Instability, Volgaris.

The Minion Death Pipeline. This pipeline is applied whenever a minion is about to die. For example, it is called:







“Is Dying”

  • The minion is set to “dying” status.
  • All “is dying” effects are checked.
  • An “is dying” effect that “returns ... to life” is called a dying-cancel. It resets the minion to “alive” status (which causes all other dying-cancels to ignore this death).
  • If the dying was cancelled and the minion now has positive hit points, halt.



  • The minion is set to “dead” status.
  • For a “kills” death, all “when ... is killed” effects happen.
  • For a “kills” or “dies” death, all “when ... dies” effects happen.



v2.20.00 Last updated 2009/03/27




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