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  • posted a message on What to do if you suspect someone of cheating mana?

    What should you do if you suspected/suspect your opinion untapped previously tapped land, but you aren't too sure?

    In a tournament setting, call a judge, if you suspect cheating. You won't be penalized for doing so, even if there was no cheating. The judge will determine what to do. At the very least, your opponent's habbit of tapping and untapping his permanents should warrant a Caution if not a Warning for confusing the game state. Repeated offense can even get a harsher penalty (game loss). And if it is determined, that your opponent did indeed cheat, well, that's a disqualification.

    In a Casual game, there are no official judges, of course. But that doesn't hinder you to remind your opponent, that he has to keep the board state clear, and that he should refrain from his tap/untap habit. You can and should do this in a tournament setting as well, naturally.

    When playing with friends or casually at a shop, what is the best way to resolve a situation where one player claims the other player untapped land but didn't *see* it?

    1. He has a habit of tapping and untapping lands often when making decisions on whether to use artifacts or land for mana.

    There's not much you can do for this game, so just continue playing with the game state as it is. But again, you should remind that player, that he should stop his peculiar habit. It's an overall bad practice, that can get him into trouble in a tournament setting.

    2. He has a lot of artifacts that make his spells cost less.
    3. It is near impossible to remember what cards he played in a turn. His turns are longer, because he often does a ton of little things, so it's hard to go back and check to see if he used his mana properly.

    If he is playing a complex deck, that requires lots of actions during a turn and has lots of interactions, then it is not unfair to anyone, if you pay closer attention. Even if his actions don't directly influence the other players, he is not playing solitaire. He should at least announce what card he is playing and should allow everyone time to respond to any one action he takes and to check that he did everything correctly. He is, after all, just a human, bound to make errors. Don't feel bad about checking on him. This will make all of you better players.

    How to watch for mana untapping?

    The first thing to do, of course, as I mentioned before, is to make him stop his peculiar habit. Of course, in the spirit of fairness, this has to go for all other players as well.

    In a larger multiplayer game, many people tend to let their attention wander to other stuff (texting on the phone, reading books, etc.). This, too, is a bad habit. You're there to play Magic, so keep your mind on the game! Watch what the other players are doing, even if it doesn't affect you directly. If you all keep focussed on the game, then it becomes much harder to do underhanded stuff like untapping a tapped land. So discourage non-Magic stuff during the game.
    Posted in: Magic General
  • posted a message on Jund Ooze tribal
    A few more Ooze related cards to consider:
    Corrupted Zendikon
    Gelatinous Genesis
    Miming Slime
    Slime Molding
    Ooze Flux (as a way to use your counters to create even more Oozes, nice with Experiment One)
    Posted in: Casual & Multiplayer Formats
  • posted a message on MTG Blue/White Deck Building Help!!!
    Control basically has three key elements:

    1) The control tools. Cards that hinder your opponent, deal with his permanents and spells, etc. These are the cards that allow you to dictate the pace of the game and take control of it. Examples are counterspells (great for any control deck using blue, but not a nessessity for control in general), cheap mass removal like Day of Judgment or Anger of the Gods, spot removal like Doom Blade, Path to Exile, or even something as simple as Pacifism.

    2) Card advantage. By having more cards available during the game, your chances of victory drastically increase. In control having more cards means to have more control tools available than your opponent has threats. Card advantage can be achieved by simply drawing more cards (Divination, etc.), by dealing with several of your opponent's cards with just one of yours (Day of Judgment, etc.), or by getting two or more effects out of a single card (most commonly a 2-for-1, like with Manic Vandal giving you a creature and blowing up an artifact, or a cantrip giving you one effect and replacing itself with another card).

    3) The finisher. This is what you win the game with. It can be some big creature (preferable an evasive one that's also hard to deal with), a planeswalker able to win the game by itself if unchecked, a game ending combo of sorts, etc. It doesn't have to be an extremely powerful card, but it should be able to win you the game if left unchecked. Theoretically, a vanilla 2/2 would suffice if you can make it attack unhindered turn after turn until your opponent is dead. It's just, that winning like this will consume lots of cards and time, giving your opponent more chances for a come back. So you want your finsiher to do the job in just a couple of turns or right away, usually. Don't commit too many cards on your finisher, because the more cards you commit to this, the less cards you have available to obtain control. With your card advantage you'll draw into your finsiher eventually.

    Many cards fall into several of these categories, some even into all three. Using such cards will increase utility and thus increase your chances of winning. After all, the more options you have, the more likely you are to be able to answer an opponent's threat. This is primarily, why card advanatge is so important: having more cards gives you more options.

    W/U is a classic control color combination, but even W/U control decks aren't nessessarily alike in what cards they use. One may pack a horrendous amount of counterspells why another may not even have a single one. So now that you're set on building a W/U control deck, the next step is to figure out, how you want to win with the deck and how you want a typical game to progress. I.e. formulate a game plan for you deck, then choose cards accordingly. Or choose some cards you like to play with and based on those create your game plan.
    Posted in: Casual & Multiplayer Formats
  • posted a message on Mono Green Vanilla deck - but question about manlands
    Quote from TheWarden »

    You have some work to do. While Asceticism does combo with glyphs, Primal Rage does not. It gives it an ability.

    Asceticism doesn't work with the Petroglyphs either. It has been errataed to grant hexproof, so it would shut down the 'glyphs completely.

    Lure effects are also a good way of getting your pumped up team through.

    With that many green mana symbols on your permanents, Nykthos, Shrine to Nyx can give your mana production a great boost.

    You should also try to get some removal into the deck to deal with your opponent's threats. The fight mechanic may prove useful here.
    Posted in: Casual & Multiplayer Formats
  • posted a message on Need help countering my friends strategies
    In a control deck, it doesn't really matter, what your finsiher is. Of course, a more powerful card will likely achieve victory earlier or will be harder to stop. But if you have obtained control of the game, an otherwise vanilla 5/5 flyer is as viable as a 4/4 unblockable hexproof critter or some token generating planeswalker. I once witnessed a depressingly slow control deck that went for victory by hitting the opponent dead with a Ninja of the Deep Hours. The key for winning with control is estabishing and keeping control until the game is over, not using the most powerful win con there is.

    For bouncing permanents try using cards like Aether Adept or Aether Wall. These cards are useful even if the opponent doesn't use auras, but are especially powerful if he does.

    Blue has a variety of powerful removal spells like Pongify. Red has lots of burn, and if you can create large amounts of card advantage, then even cheap ones that do a lot of damage in exchage for losing cards like Lightning Axe are viable. Repeated tapping of creatures with cards like Icy Manipulator, Trip Noose, or Puppeteer can really punish an opponent relying of beefing up creature with auras or equipment. Pseudo removal like Encrust or Claustrophobia can also be found aplenty in blue. While 4 mana may seem a bit expensive, Mystic Restraints is surprisingly effective. A useful red mass burn spell is Rough // Tumble. Use it to burn away early swarms of groundpounders, or to blow swarms of dragons out of the sky later.
    Posted in: Casual & Multiplayer Formats
  • posted a message on Fallowsage + Witches' Eye
    The activated ability granted by witches' Eye is put on the stack, and in the course of activating it, the Sage triggers. That trigger is put on top of the ability after you've finished activating it. Objects on the stack resolve last-in-first-out (LIFO), so first you may draw a card, then you scry.
    Posted in: Magic Rulings Archives
  • posted a message on Skill Borrower, Patron of the Orochi
    Problem is, even if there is only the one copy, what hinders you to say that it is a different one? The opponent cannot verify.
    Posted in: Magic Rulings Archives
  • posted a message on Skill Borrower, Patron of the Orochi
    Quote from psly4mne »

    However, if there are two Patrons in your top three cards and you put the other one on top, it is a new object, and your opponent does not have any way of distinguishing between these two situations. If you do switch Patrons, I don't know if you need to inform your opponent that the top Patron is now a new object, or if you don't need to tell them until you activate it again. I would be interested in getting an answer to that question.

    You don't have to inform your opponent about the order the cards are put back in.

    401.4. If an effect puts two or more cards on the top or bottom of a library at the same time, the owner
    of those cards may arrange them in any order. That library’s owner doesn’t reveal the order in
    which the cards go into his or her library.

    But since that is the case and one cannot technically distinguish between two copies of the same card (even if they have different illustrations), I think, I'll have to change my answer from before. The only way to make the situation work consistently regarding both cases ((1) only one copy of the card among the top three and it's on top, (2) more than one copy among the top three with one on top), is to let the top card be a new object in either case.
    Posted in: Magic Rulings Archives
  • posted a message on Skill Borrower, Patron of the Orochi
    I was put into doubt about this (see below).

    No. The card is the top card of the library and stays revealed the whole time.

    However, if you use Sensei's Divinig Top twice, once to change the top card and once to change it back, then it will be a new object.
    Posted in: Magic Rulings Archives
  • posted a message on Infinite Combo Of Life?
    If you do have a means to stop the loop, you certainly want to use it after your opponent reaches 0 or less life, not before. He may not lose this turn, but he won't be having another meaningful turn himself since he loses next turn (if he cannot raise his life total above 0 again in time, meaning during this turn) as soon as state based actions are checked (which happens in his upkeep before he gets priority to do anthing).

    If a trigger goes off in the cleanup step, or some other state based action is performed (him losing for having 0 life isn't performed because it can't happen due to AG), he won't even make it to his turn, since he'll lose this turn already in a second cleanup step, when the effect of Angel's Grace has already ended.
    Posted in: Magic Rulings Archives
  • posted a message on Infinite Combo Of Life?
    Quote from Doreburg »
    Quote from ZenoRage »
    The rule is that when the combo goes off and your opponent has resolved a Angels Grace, then the effects will continue to happen indefinitely, halting the progress of the game.

    However when I have Angel's Grace I can stop my own loop before an opponent would lose and it will be and easy finish? I assume

    That doesn't make sense. Angel's Grace doesn't do anything for you if you control the combo. It certainly doesn't stop the loop.
    Posted in: Magic Rulings Archives
  • posted a message on Infinite Combo Of Life?
    If the game enters a mandatory loop with no one able to stop it, yes, the game is a draw. Life totals don't matter for this.

    (Even if someone does have the means, since it won't be part of the loop's pieces, he's not forced to use it, but can choose to let the game draw.)

    104.4b If a game that’s not using the limited range of influence option (including a two-player
    game) somehow enters a “loop” of mandatory actions, repeating a sequence of events with no
    way to stop, the game is a draw. Loops that contain an optional action don’t result in a draw.
    Posted in: Magic Rulings Archives
  • posted a message on Infinite Combo Of Life?
    Yes. That's a variant of the Exquisite Blood-Sanguine Bond combo. They trigger each other over and over. It's not infinite, though. It'll end as soon as you can no longer target an opponent or you win the game.
    Posted in: Magic Rulings Archives
  • posted a message on Question about Urborg, Tomb of Yawgmoth
    Since Blood Moon and Magus of the Moon turn all nonbasic lands into Mountains without usiung the phrase "in addition to its other types", doing so will remove any abilities those nonbasic lands have. Since this effect removes the subtype granting ability of Urborg, there is dependency, so Urborg would be applied after those effects, but there is nothing left to apply. This also means, that timestamps don't matter.

    305.7. If an effect sets a land’s subtype to one or more of the basic land types, the land no longer has its
    old land type. It loses all abilities generated from its rules text
    , its old land types, and any copy
    effects affecting that land, and it gains the appropriate mana ability for each new basic land type.
    Note that this doesn’t remove any abilities that were granted to the land by other effects. Setting a
    land’s subtype doesn’t add or remove any card types (such as creature) or supertypes (such as basic,
    legendary, and snow) the land may have. If a land gains one or more land types in addition to its
    own, it keeps its land types and rules text, and it gains the new land types and mana abilities.

    613.7. Within a layer or sublayer, determining which order effects are applied in is sometimes done
    using a dependency system. If a dependency exists, it will override the timestamp system.

    613.7a An effect is said to “depend on” another if (a) it’s applied in the same layer (and, if
    applicable, sublayer) as the other effect (see rules 613.1 and 613.3); (b) applying the other
    would change the text or the existence of the first effect
    , what it applies to, or what it does to
    any of the things it applies to; and (c) neither effect is from a characteristic-defining ability or
    both effects are from characteristic-defining abilities
    . Otherwise, the effect is considered to be
    independent of the other effect.

    613.7b An effect dependent on one or more other effects waits to apply until just after all of those
    effects have been applied
    . If multiple dependent effects would apply simultaneously in this way,
    they’re applied in timestamp order relative to each other. If several dependent effects form a
    dependency loop, then this rule is ignored and the effects in the dependency loop are applied in
    timestamp order.

    613.7c After each effect is applied, the order of remaining effects is reevaluated and may change if
    an effect that has not yet been applied becomes dependent on or independent of one or more
    other effects that have not yet been applied.

    Posted in: Magic Rulings Archives
  • posted a message on Valakut Trigger Question
    Valakut has an intervening-if clause. This means, that in order to trigger in the first place this condition must be true already. And for the trigger to resolve the condition must be true at resolution also. Your fetchland will trigger Valakut in this scenario, because its trigger condition is true due to Valakut itself being made a Mountain by Prismatic Omen, so you do control 5 other Mountains when your fetchland (which is also a Mountain due to Omen) enters the battlefield. The land your STE fetches will trigger Valakut as well fr the same reason.

    If you had only 3 other lands when playing your fetchland, then Valakut wouldn't trigger for that. your STE could only change that, if you fetch a land with it before playing the fetchland. but then the land from STE wouldn't trigger Valakut.
    Posted in: Magic Rulings Archives
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