Can I use a tap ability during my opponents turn?

  • #1
    If i have a blinding mage on the battle field and my opponent has a creature and declares an attack, can I pay one mana, tap blinding mage and tap my opponents creature, stopping the attack?

    Im assuming then that this would apply to all creatures with a tap symbol that allows you to target opponents and their creatures
  • #2
    Assuming the Blinding Mage is not summoning sick, yes.

    Activated abilities can be activated at anytime you have priority (in other words: when you could play an instant) unless they state otherwise.

    Do be aware that you have to tap the creature BEFORE it is declared as an attacker. The Beginning of Combat Step being your last chance to do this, your opponent also has to give you a chance to do this before declaring attackers.
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  • #3
    Yes, you may. You need to technically do it before it's declared an attack (during combat begins step or phase or whatever, I'm sure someone else can tell what it's called). Once it's tapped and attacking it's too late (really matters mostly in mtgo).
  • #4
    Quote from Darkjester95
    If i have a blinding mage on the battle field and my opponent has a creature and declares an attack, can I pay one mana, tap blinding mage and tap my opponents creature, stopping the attack?

    You cannot "stop the attack" once the creature is already declared as an attacker. However, your opponent must give you a chance to act, he cannot rush you through his turn. So if he jumps ahead by declaring attackers you can stop him, effectively rewinding the game to before attackers are actually declared. Then you can use Blinding Mage's ability to tap one of his creatures. If he has other creatures, he can still declare them as attackers, though.

    Im assuming then that this would apply to all creatures with a tap symbol that allows you to target opponents and their creatures

    Unless an ability says otherwise you can activate it whenever you have priority. You only need to be able to pay the cost. (Note that the creature must not have summoning sickness if the cost includes the tap or untap symbol.)
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  • #5
    I constantly argue with my friends about this. Sometimes, we wait to tap each others' creatures until after they declare it as an attacker. For example, "I'm attacking with my Ezuri's Brigade." "No, I'm tapping it with my Tumble Magnet." Forgive me if I should start a new thread with this question, but it seems appropriate: how do we settle the argument? What about when someone declares, "You declared attackers too quickly and didn't give me enough time to decide which creatures to tap?"

    EDIT: Ah, it appears that Hendrik may have answered this question for me. Thank you for your clairvoyance!
    Last edited by Etched Chester: 3/22/2011 7:17:18 PM
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  • #6
    Quote from Etched Chester
    What about when someone declares, "You declared attackers too quickly and didn't give me enough time to decide which creatures to tap?"


    Then you back up and give them a chance to decide which creatures to tap. You can't "rush" to Declare Attackers and then tell your opponents "Sorry, too late."
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  • #7
    Quote from Etched Chester
    how do we settle the argument? What about when someone declares, "You declared attackers too quickly and didn't give me enough time to decide which creatures to tap?"

    Magic is never ever a game of quick reflexes and speed. If you frequently run into such situations, make a habit of stating your intent to enter combat. Just clearly state something like "I want to declare attackers." or ask "May I declare attackers?"
    If they answer something like "Go ahead", or "okay", they have missed their chance to tap someone down before you attack.
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  • #8
    so based on using a tap ability before combat if you're in a multiplayer game (not teams/free for all) can another player thats not attacking use one of their creatures tap abilities to boost the attacking players creatures before or after attackers/blockers are declared?
  • #9
    Of course. Is there any reason you think that's not a legit thing to do?
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  • #10
    Quote from Fuzzysnuggles
    so based on using a tap ability before combat if you're in a multiplayer game (not teams/free for all) can another player thats not attacking use one of their creatures tap abilities to boost the attacking players creatures before or after attackers/blockers are declared?


    Yep. If they have an ability that would do so, there is nothing stopping them (aside from Summoning Sickness, targeting, the usual). Unless you are playing with Area of Effect.
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  • #11
    even if its a +X/+X ability? just making sure as that also means that you can deal additional damage to a player with creatures that get past their defenses and in a duel you have to do so before the combat phase.
  • #12
    Yes, even if it's a +X/+X.

    However, you're mistaken on that; unless an ability explicitly states that it may only be activated before you declare attackers, or some other timing restriction, you can activate it whenever you can pay the costs.

    For example, I can activate my Auriok Bladewarden at any time I have priority, even after attackers/blockers have been declared. What made you think otherwise?
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  • #13
    I thought otherwise because when in a duel it states that you have to play spells and abilities before the combat phase.

    unless you're the defender.

    Double-post merged. -Carsten
    Last edited by CarstenHaese: 5/5/2011 8:26:38 AM
  • #14
    That's very much incorrect. Here's how combat breaks down: The phase itself is comprised of several steps. There's the Beginning of Combat Step, the Declare Attackers Step, the Declare Blockers Step, the Combat Damage Step, and the End of Combat Step.

    During the Declare Attackers and Declare Blockers step, the turn-based action of declaring attackers/blockers [respectively] happens before anything else, and in the Combat Damage step, damage is assigned and dealt before you do anything else. After those actions, BOTH players [starting with the Active Player] will get priority, and be able to activate abilities and cast Instants/cards with Flash. The Active Player also gets priority right away in the Beginning and End of Combat steps.

    There is no rule preventing you from casting spells/activating abilities before combat [that's why things like Giant Growth are called 'combat tricks'. You attack with what they think is a small creature, and pump it after they declare no blocks]

    Does that make sense?
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  • #15
    as per http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Magic:_The_Gathering_rules it states that all spells and abilities are to used before attackers/blockers are declared although its a grey area for the combat damage step as it doesn't state if you can or can't use spells or abilities.
  • #16
    Wikipedia is incorrect there. You may cast Instants/spells with Flash, or activate abilities at any time you have priority. NOT just before combat. For one, "before declare attackers/blockers" is very vague.

    Trust me; the rules are very clear on this. Nowhere in the rules does it imply that you may not cast spells or activate abilities during combat.

    Quote from MCR »
    116.1a A player may cast an instant spell any time he or she has priority. A player may cast a noninstant spell during his or her main phase any time he or she has priority and the stack is empty.


    Quote from MCR »
    116.1b A player may activate an activated ability any time he or she has priority
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  • #17
    Hoodoo is right. The rules are clear on this. There is nothing vague.
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