I saw a question on the Epic Card Game Facebook page about how recycle works, and it motivated me to go into detail about it, mainly because I thought of some cool interactions with it.
Taken straight from WWG:
5.5.1 Recycle means: “You may put two cards from your discard pile on the bottom of your deck in any order. If you do, draw a card.”
In the 1st print rule book, recycle said you “banished” 2 cards, but it was updated for ease of play.
I will add any other recycle questions received to this list.
- For cards like Blind Faith, can you choose itself as a card to recycle?
When you play a card, it goes into the Supplemental Zone while it completely resolves. So, while it is in the Supplemental Zone, Blind Faith would cause all champions to lose their powers and abilities, and then it would recycle. Since Blind Faith is still in the Supplemental Zone at this point, it can’t be chosen as 1 of the 2 cards to recycle. Once you finish recycling (which is optional), Blind Faith then goes into your discard pile.
- What happens if I have less than 2 cards in my discard pile, and I play a card with recycle?
You can’t recycle.
If you can’t put exactly 2 cards on the bottom of your deck, you can’t recycle.
It is, however, still legal to play the card, even if you don’t have enough cards to recycle, since putting 2 cards on the bottom of your deck to draw a card is optional.
- Can I put just 1 card from my discard pile on the bottom of my deck with recycle? For example, it’s my turn and my opponent has an expended Necromancer Lord in play. I want to put the Kong in my discard pile on the bottom of my deck to prevent them from taking it later.
You can only put exactly 2 cards on the bottom of your deck with recycle.
- Can I recycle an unbanishable and/or an untargetable card in my discard pile, like Thundarus?
If a card is in your discard pile, ignore all rules text not in gray. As of now, there is no card in Epic that protects a card in your discard pile. (Unless you count The Gudgeon protecting you from Amnesia, Keeper of Secrets, and Heinous Feast. The Gudgeon does not protect your cards from Corpse Taker or Guilt Demon because those cards don’t target the player, they target a card in “any” discard pile.)
- Will “when this card leaves your discard pile” triggers, like Ancient Chant, work when I put that card on the bottom of my deck with recycle?
The card doesn’t care how it leaves your discard pile, just that it does.
Warrior Golem can recycle itself to its own recycle trigger. This is because Warrior Golem‘s trigger resolves when it “goes into your discard pile from anywhere” (instead of while Warrior Golem is resolving in the Supplemental Zone). Due to this, it will be a legal target in your discard pile while the recycle trigger resolves.
Warrior Golem‘s recycle trigger will also occur if you have to discard it. This can either be because your opponent played a Thought Plucker etc. or if you have more than 7 cards in your hand at the end of your turn.
**Edit: After checking with WWG, if anything triggers during the end phase, you start the end phase again. So, you would discard, recycle, draw to 8, and then discard again.**
If you are the owner of the card, you would get the recycle effect if it was under your opponent’s control when it breaks, since it goes to your discard pile.
Keeper of Secrets
Keeper of Secrets is interesting because it puts Recycle onto an Ally trigger. This means the recycle happens, after the 1-cost card that triggered it finishes resolving.
So, if you play an Ancient Chant with this in play:
- You would put the recycle trigger into a batch to occur after Ancient Chant resolves
- Draw 2 cards
- Put Ancient Chant into your discard pile since it is done resolving
- Resolve Recycle trigger
- Since Ancient Chant is already in your discard pile, you choose Ancient Chant and 1 other card to put on the bottom of your deck
- Ancient Chant‘s “when this card leaves your discard pile” trigger gets put into another new batch to resolve after the recycle trigger finishes resolving
- Draw a card from recycle
- Draw a card from Ancient Chant trigger
If you play Stand Alone with a Keeper of Secrets in play, as long as you don’t choose the Keeper of Secrets (causing it to break), your 2 chosen cards could actually be both the Stand Alone and the Keeper of Secrets that triggered the recycle.
Reaper, Final Task, Ogre Mercenary
With this combo, you can recycle 2 of the cards that triggered the recycle to themselves.
- You would put the Reaper Ally trigger into a batch to occur after Final Task resolves
- Final Task puts Ogre Mercenary (or any other Tribute->Recycle) champion into play
- Ogre Mercenary‘s recycle trigger gets added to the batch to occur after Final Task resolves
- Ogre Mercenary gains blitz etc.
- Final Task finishes resolving and goes to the discard pile
- Resolve the Reaper and Ogre Mercenary triggers in any order
- Use Reaper trigger first to break Ogre Mercenary (put a demon into play)
- Resolve Ogre Mercenary‘s recycle trigger
- Since Final Task and Ogre Mercenary are already in your discard pile, they may be chosen as the 2 cards to put on the bottom of your deck
- Draw a card from recycle
All Of The Things
It’s your turn and both you and your opponent still have a gold.
- In play: 2 untargetable Fire Shamans and an untargetable Drinker of Blood (The champions are untargetable due to Priest of Kalnor, Angelic Protector, or Kalnor’s Blessing)
- In hand: 1 card (Surprise Attack)
- In discard pile: 0 cards
- In deck: 26 cards (at least 1 Priestess of Angeline and 1 Flash Fire)
- Health: 2
- In play: Warrior Golem and an untargetable The Gudgeon (Untargetable due to Kalnor’s Blessing or Angelic Protector possibly vanished)
- In hand: 5 cards (1 Angel of Death, 1 Necrovirus, 1 Draka’s Fire, 1 Corpse Taker, 1 Guilt Demon)
- In discard pile: 23 cards (2 Angel of Deaths, 2 Dark Assassins, 1 Demon Breach, 1 Drinker of Blood, 2 Final Tasks, 1 Necromancer Lord, 1 Necrovirus, 2 Soul Hunters, 1 Zombie Apocalypse, 1 Ceasefire, 1 Palace Guard, 1 Amnesia, 2 Ancient Chants, 3 Crystal Golems, 1 Muse, and 1 Sea Titan)
- In deck: 0 cards
- Health: 5
Resolve Surprise Attack
- Play Surprise Attack
- Put 2 Fire Shaman triggers into a separate batch (targets are chosen when the triggers resolve)
- Draw a card (Priestess of Angeline)
- Put Priestess of Angeline into play with Surprise Attack effect
- Put Priestess of Angeline tribute -> recycle trigger into the Fire Shaman trigger batch
- Surprise Attack finishes resolving and is put into your discard pile
Current state: 2 mandatory 3 damage Fire Shaman triggers need to resolve. The only targets for them are your 2 health, your Priestess of Angeline, and your opponent’s Warrior Golem. You also have a recycle trigger, but, in your discard pile, you have just 1 card, Surprise Attack.
First Batch (2 Fire Shaman triggers and 1 recycle trigger)
- Since you don’t have enough cards to recycle yet, resolve the first Fire Shaman trigger targeting your Priestess of Angeline (because targeting happens on resolution, this is legal even though Priestess of Angeline wasn’t in play when the Fire Shaman ally effects were triggered)
- Priestess of Angeline takes 3 damage and is immediately broken and put into your discard pile
- Due to Priestess of Angeline breaking, put a Drinker of Blood trigger into a new batch to be resolved when this batch is finished
- Since you now have enough cards in your discard pile to recycle, resolve the recycle trigger and recycle the Surprise Attack and Priestess of Angeline to draw a card (Flash Fire)
- Even though you drew a Flash Fire, you can’t play it until all triggers finish resolving
- Resolve the last trigger in this batch, the second Fire Shaman trigger. Since you haven’t gained the health from Drinker of Blood yet, you don’t want to target yourself and lose immediately, so you must target the only remaining legal target, your opponent’s Warrior Golem
- Warrior Golem takes 3 damage and is immediately broken and put into your opponent’s discard pile
- Due to Warrior Golem breaking, put a 2nd Drinker of Blood trigger into the new batch
- Put Warrior Golem‘s recycle trigger into the new batch
- The first batch finishes resolving
Second Batch (2 of your Drinker of Blood triggers, 1 recycle trigger for your opponent)
- Since you have the initiative, your triggers resolve first
- Resolve the first Drinker of Blood trigger increasing your health to 4 and decreasing your opponent’s health to 3
- Resolve the second Drinker of Blood trigger increasing your health to 6 and decreasing your opponent’s health to 1 (You have the Flash Fire in hand for the win, but you can’t play it until all of the triggers finish resolving.)
- Now your opponent’s recycle trigger resolves
- They choose both Ancient Chants in their discard pile
- Your opponent puts both Ancient Chants on the bottom of their deck
- This puts 2 Ancient Chant triggers into a third batch
- Your opponent draws a card from recycle (one of the Ancient Chants just put on the bottom of their deck)
- The second batch finishes resolving
Current state, your opponent has 1 card in their deck and 2 Ancient Chant triggers.
Third Batch (2 Ancient Triggers for your Opponent)
- Your opponent resolves the first Ancient Chant trigger and draws the last card in their deck (the second Ancient Chant that was recycled)
- Your opponent resolves the second Ancient Chant trigger and tries to draw a card
- Since your opponent has no more cards in their deck, your opponent wins. Since your opponent has already won, you can’t play your Flash Fire to reduce them to 0 or less health.
Your opponent wins. If you skipped down here and want to see why, read through the explanation of the triggers above.