#6 - "Mark of quality, part 2" (A custom card design guide: templating)

(The banner is my own elaboration. The original image is by Holly Chaffin and is released in the public domain.)

The Lion's Lair #6

“Mark of quality, part 2”

(A custom card design guide: templating)

(This article was originally published here.)



The article index is always updated with the latest content.


As I wrote the last article, I knew there were some mistakes I was going to miss. That's why I asked all of you for more mistakes I forgot to mention. From your feedback, one more entry from Astrolabe's wiki, and a little more research on my part, I came up with enough more to fill another article and arrive to the symbolic number of 50 mistakes in two articles. In fact, I'll resume the numbering from where I arrived last week to avoid ambiguity. The structure will be the same as in last week's article. Let's go!

Rule the world

In this section it's all about the rules!

27 – “Flip” and “transform”
Flip cards were in Kamigawa block and they're now regarded as a design failure. “Flip” means to rotate the card 180 degrees so that it's upside down but on the same face. At the contrary, double-faced cards were in Innistrad block and they're considered a huge success. “Transform” means to physically reverse the card so that its other face is showing. Those two are completely different things and should never be confused. Double-faced cards don't flip! They transform! Always remember that!

Delver of Secrets U
Creature – Human Wizard (C)
At the beginning of your upkeep, look at the top card of your library. You may reveal that card. If an instant or sorcery card is revealed this way, flip Delver of Secrets.

Delver of Secrets

Other examples: Huntmaster of the Fells transforms, it doesn't flip! Akki Lavarunner flips, it doesn't transform!

28 – Rounding halves (courtesy of Thought Criminal)
When some quantity (for example damage) is divided in half, you must always specify if the result must be rounded up or down. That's because Magic only supports integer numbers.

Endless Ranks of the Dead 2BB
Enchantment (R)
At the beginning of your upkeep, put X 2/2 black Zombie creature tokens onto the battlefield, where X is half the number of Zombies you control.
With Thraben's army recalled to its city walls, outlying villages were left to fend for themselves.

Endless Ranks of the Dead

Other examples: Fireball, Gisela, Blade of Goldnight (last ability), Havoc Festival, Heartless Hidetsugu, Rakdos the Defiler, Traumatize.

29 – Color indicators
If a card has no mana cost, or has a colorless mana cost, while actually being colored, you need to use a color indicator. The use of text specifying “CARDNAME is COLOR” is an old practice from before color indicators were invented. The only case where you still need to use rules text is if the card has a colored mana cost but it's actually colorless. In that case you must specify “CARDNAME is colorless” in rules text (see Ghostfire).
There's no universally recognized way to make a color indicator on these boards. The most common methods are to put a mana symbol of that color at the beginning of the type line, where the color indicator would actually be on a real printed card, or just to spell it out, like: (red color indicator).

Pact of Negation 0
Instant (R)
Pact of Negation is blue.
Counter target spell.
At the beginning of your next upkeep, pay 3UU. If you don't, you lose the game.
Those who expect betrayal at every turn are seldom disappointed.

Pact of Negation

Other examples: the other Pacts, Ghostfire, Transguild Courier is a vanilla creature with a color indicator in its Oracle text, Insectile Aberration and all the back faces of double-faced cards.

30 – Duration of effects
Always specify the duration for effects that need it (“until end of turn”, “this turn”, “until your next turn”, “for the rest of the game”, etc...). Pay particular attention to effects that let a player “gain control” of something. If a duration is not specified, the effect lasts indefinitely, and usually there is reminder text reflecting that on the card: (This effect lasts indefinitely.).

Stigma Lasher RR
Creature – Elemental Shaman (R)
Wither (This deals damage to creatures in the form of -1/-1 counters.)
Whenever Stigma Lasher deals damage to a player, that player can't gain life.
The Extinguisher's curse lasted long after her departure.

Stigma Lasher

Other examples: Praetor's Counsel (“for the rest of the game”)
Sorin, Solemn Visitor, Nivix, Aerie of the Firemind, Shapesharer, all cards with detain (“until your next turn”)
Goblin Heelcutter, Wild Slash (ferocious ability), Winds of Qal Sisma (“this turn”)
Break Through the Line (“this turn” and “until end of turn”)

31 – “As” abilities (courtesy of BaronVonGrixis)
Those with "as" are NOT triggered abilities, but effects that just naturally occur during the specified event, and for that reason they don't even use the stack. They just happen.

For example, if you turn face up a Hooded Hydra, putting five +1/+1 counters on it is part of the same action of turning it face up and I can't respond to it. Why couldn't it have been "When Hooded Hydra is turned face up, put five +1/+1 counters on it"? Because then the game would have seen this:
- You turn the Hydra face up as a special action. The triggered ability using "when" triggers and goes on the stack, waiting to resolve to put the five +1/+1 counters on the Hydra. Even if turning the Hydra face up doesn't use the stack it is an action anyway, so priority kicks in and SBA (state based actions) are checked, as they always are when a player gets priority.
- SBA see a 0/0 on the battlefield (the Hydra without any counters because the ability that would put them on it is still on the stack waiting to resolve and hasn't resolved yet), so they destroy the Hydra, that dies and goes in your graveyard.
- After that priority has been passed by all players, the top object of the stack resolves, and that is the triggered ability that goes: "Oh, where is the Hydra? I was meant to put counters on it, but it disappeared!" because the Hydra is no longer on the battlefield and so it does nothing.
- What do we end up with in this scenario (the one where the Hydra's one is a triggered ability saying "when")? A dead Hydra and no counters. I don't think that's what we want.

How does this change if the ability says "as" (thus NOT being a triggered one, but a static one)? In that case this is what happens:
- You turn the Hydra face up as a special action. As part of that same action, you also put five +1/+1 counters on the Hydra. An action has been done, so priority kicks in and SBA are checked.
- SBA see a 5/5 Hydra on the battlefield (0/0 with five +1/+1 counters put on it as part of the same action of turning it face up), and they are perfectly fine with it.
- What do we end up with here? A 5/5 Hydra and the game goes on. That's what we wanted.

The same thing happens with abilities that say "As CARDNAME enters the battlefield". In fact, check out this from the Comprehensive Rules (FRF Edition, as it's the latest at the time of this writing):

Quote from Comprehensive Rules »

(emphasis mine)

603.6e Some permanents have text that reads “[This permanent] enters the battlefield with... ,” “As [this permanent] enters the battlefield... ,” “[This permanent] enters the battlefield as... ,” or “[This permanent] enters the battlefield tapped.” Such text is a static ability — not a triggered ability — whose effect occurs as part of the event that puts the permanent onto the battlefield.

As another example, in the case of Alloy Golem, you choose the color as an additional part of the process of it entering the battlefield and I can't respond to your color choice.

Blood Crypt
Land – Swamp Mountain (R)
When Blood Crypt enters the battlefield, you may pay 2 life. If you don't, Blood Crypt enters the battlefield tapped.
Where the dead serve as diversion, decor, and dessert.

Blood Crypt (the “when” makes it a triggered ability, so it triggers when the land enters the battlefield, but how can you know if the land enters the battlefield tapped or not if you still have to make the choice of paying life because the ability that makes you choose when it resolves is still on the stack?)

Other examples: the other shocklands

Adaptive Automaton – if it said “when” instead of “as”, this could happen: you cast the Automaton, it enters the battlefield and the triggered ability goes on the stack. Let's say you want to choose the creature type “Vampire”, but you would have to wait until the triggered ability resolves to choose a creature type. If I use Victim of Night on it in response to the triggered ability I will destroy your Automaton, because the ability has not resolved, so it's not a Vampire yet. Also, your Vampires wouldn't get the bonus until the ability resolves, so if you had a 2/2 Vampire I could Shock it in response before it would become a 3/3.

Archangel of Strife – if it said “when” instead of “as”, this could happen: say you would like to choose “peace” because you have a lot of 1/1 tokens you want to protect. You'll be able to make that choice only when the ability resolves, so I can play Volcanic Fallout in response to the triggered ability and kill all your tokens before you can even make your choice.

Caged Sun – if it said “when” instead of “as”, this could happen: you want to choose green to pump the only creature you control, that's a Garruk's Packleader, but you can't choose it until the triggered ability resolves, so I can throw a Flame Javelin at it in response to that ability to kill it before it even gets +1/+1. Also, if you want to cast something else in response, say a Sheltering Word to give the Packleader hexproof and save it, you can't do it if you somehow have only one untapped land, because the Sun isn't doubling your mana yet, since you haven't chosen any color yet.

Cavern of Souls – if it said “when” instead of “as”, this could happen: with the triggered ability to choose a creature type still on the stack, you want to cast a creature with flash in response (for some strange reason). You can tap the Cavern itself to get mana, but you'll only get colorless mana from the second ability. You can tap it to get a mana of any color with the last ability, but you can't spend it because of the “only of the chosen type” restriction, and the type has not yet been chosen.

The Sieges from FRF – if they said “when” instead of “as”, they would enter the battlefield with no abilities, neither the Khans one nor the Dragons one, because the triggered ability that would make you choose Khans or Dragons is still on the stack.

All these examples are meant to show that using “when” instead of “as” always leads to a different functionality and can very often lead to counterintuitive results.

32 – Keyword abilities
Mistakes #32-34 were already discussed in my second article, to which I remand for an more detailed discussion about them. I'm including them here too just to not let them be missed if one only looks at this article and the last one.
All keywords are divided into three categories: keyword abilities, keyword actions, and ability words. Keyword abilities are what we normally think about when we think of a keyword: it's a word that doesn't have its usual English meaning, but it takes the place of some rules text, thus assuming a particular new meaning in Magic, specified in the rules and in reminder text. They are never followed by a period. For keywords formed by more than one word (for example, first strike), or when there are more of them in a list, only the first word is capitalized.

Mirran Knight 2WW
Creature – Human Knight (R)
First Strike, Vigilance .
Battle Cry (Whenever this creature attacks, each other attacking creature gets +1/+0 until end of turn.)
He's the blade of the resistance.

Mirran Knight 2WW
Creature – Human Knight (R)
First strike, vigilance
Battle cry (Whenever this creature attacks, each other attacking creature gets +1/+0 until end of turn.)
He's the blade of the resistance.

Other examples: Akroma, Angel of Wrath, Sphinx of the Steel Wind.

33 – Keyword actions
Keyword actions are verbs that have a specific meaning in Magic, instructing you to perform some actions. They are inserted in the normal flow of the sentence that has always a period at the end.

Daghatar's Edict 1B
Sorcery (U)
Bolster 1 (Choose a creature with the least toughness among creatures you control and put a +1/+1 counter on it.)
Each player sacrifices a creature with no +1/+1 counters on it.
Family bonds are the core of Abzan society, and the clan fights anyone who would threaten those bonds.

Daghatar's Edict 1B
Sorcery (U)
Bolster 1, then each player sacrifices a creature with no +1/+1 counters on it. (To bolster 1, choose a creature with the least toughness among creatures you control and put a +1/+1 counter on it.)
Family bonds are the core of Abzan society, and the clan fights anyone who would threaten those bonds.

Other examples: Wake the Reflections (note that there is a period after the keyword action “Populate”, which is capitalized just because it's at the beginning of the line, and not because it's a keyword), Augury Owl (scry is not capitalized, because it's not the first word of the sentence, and it's inserted within the normal flow of the sentence).

34 – Ability words
Keyword actions are words that have no rules meaning, but are there only to group together similar abilities. They are always at the beginning of a line written in italics, followed by a long dash and the ability's rules text. If the ability is an activated one, the ability word comes before the costs.

Bloodsoaked Champion B
Creature – Human Warrior (R)
1B: Raid - Return Bloodsoaked Champion from your graveyard to the battlefield. Activate this ability only if you attacked with a creature this turn.

Bloodsoaked Champion

Other examples: Dispatch (metalcraft), Mimic Vat (imprint), Flamewake Phoenix (ferocious).
Forecast is not an ability word, because it has rules associated with it (the “only during upkeep” and “once each turn” parts), while an ability word has no rules meaning. In fact, note that the word “forecast” is not written in italics, at the contrary of ability words.


Here are more mistakes regarding Magic's style guidelines in wording.

35 – “Face up”, “face down” / “Face-up”, “face-down”
They are written with a hyphen only when they are adjectives, for example in “face-down creature”. In all other cases there's no hyphen.

Secret Plans GU
Enchantment (U)
Face down creatures you control get +0/+1.
Whenever a permanent you control is turned face-up, draw a card.
Rakshasa trade in secrets, amassing wealth from their careful revelation.

Secret Plans

Other examples: Jeskai Infiltrator, Trail of Mystery, Whispergear Sneak, Cogwork Grinder, Mischievous Quanar, Primal Whisperer, Pyxis of Pandemonium, Break Open, Grimoire Thief, Ixidor, Reality Sculptor.

36 – Random effects
It's written “[PLAYER] discard(s) X cards at random”, not “[PLAYER] randomly discard(s) X cards”. The same is true for choosing, revealing, returning to hand, and all other actions that can be done at random.

Black Cat 1B
Creature – Zombie Cat (C)
When Black Cat dies, target opponent randomly discards a card.
Its last life is spent tormenting your dreams.
Black Cat

Other examples: Deadbridge Chant, Dementia Sliver, Desperate Ravings, Fossil Find, Friendly Fire, Ghoulraiser, Ignite Memories, Magus of the Scroll, Merfolk Spy.

37 – Discard “from the hand”
While in the very old days of Magic it was required, now it's a mistake to say that you discard “from your hand”. The word “discard” always means from the hand.

Prognostic Sphinx 3UU
Creature – Sphinx (R)
Discard a card from your hand: Prognostic Sphinx gains hexproof until end of turn. Tap it.
Whenever Prognostic Sphinx attacks, scry 3. (Look at the top three cards of your library, then put any number of them on the bottom of your library and the rest on top in any order.)

Prognostic Sphinx

Other examples: Mind Rot, Rakshasa's Secret, Mardu Skullhunter.

38 – “It” vs “he / she” in self-references (courtesy of Thought Criminal)
“It” is used for creatures, also legendary ones, while “he / she” is only used for planeswalkers. Analogously, in the possessive form, “its” (without apostrophe!) is used for creatures, also legendary ones, while “his / her” is only used for planeswalkers. The pronoun “it” is only for creatures, and “him / her” only for planeswalkers. In all cases, using the gender-specific pronouns for legendary creatures is wrong.

Ashling the Pilgrim 1R
Legendary Creature – Elemental Shaman (R)
1R: Put a +1/+1 counter on Ashling the Pilgrim. If this is the third time this ability has resolved this turn, remove all +1/+1 counters from Ashling the Pilgrim, and she deals that much damage to each creature and each player.

Ashling the Pilgrim

Other examples:
Legendary creatures: Arcanis the Omnipotent (“to its owner”, not “his owner”), Bruna, Light of Alabaster (“attach to it”, not “to her”), Daghatar the Adamant (“counters on it”, not “on him”).
Planeswalkers: Gideon Jura (last ability), Garruk Relentless (“transform him”), Gideon, Champion of Justice (second ability), Sarkhan, the Dragonspeaker (first ability reminder text).

39 – “It” vs CARDNAME in self-references (courtesy of willows)
When there would be an ambiguity, you can't use “it”, but you must use the card name. You can use either one only if there is no risk of ambiguity.

Blood Drinker 2B
Creature – Vampire (U)
Whenever Blood Drinker deals combat damage to a creature, put a +1/+1 counter on it.
Blood makes him stronger. Just not his own.

Blood Drinker 2B
Creature – Vampire (U)
Whenever Blood Drinker deals combat damage to a creature, put a +1/+1 counter on Blood Drinker.
Blood makes him stronger. Just not his own.

In this example, the ambiguity is: who gets the +1/+1 counter? Blood Drinker, or the creature it dealt combat damage to (if it survived)?

40 – “It” vs “that creature / permanent / spell / card” in references
When there would be an ambiguity, you can't use “it”, but you must use “that creature / permanent / spell / card”. You can use either one only if there is no risk of ambiguity.

Yasova Dragonclaw 2G
Legendary Creature – Human Warrior (R)
At the beginning of combat on your turn, you may pay 1(U/R)(U/R). If you do, gain control of target creature an opponent controls with power less than Yasova Dragonclaw's power until end of turn, untap it, and it gains haste until end of turn.

(Here the ambiguity is: who do you untap? Yasova or the stolen creature?)

Yasova Dragonclaw

Other examples (just from Tarkir block, otherwise they would be too many to list): Act of Treason, Pine Walker (if it said “untap it”, would you untap the Walker or the creature that has just been turned face up?).

41 – Name truncation (courtesy of Thought Criminal)
Name truncation is never mandatory. It can only appear on legendary creatures, not on planeswalkers, and only after the first instance of the card name, that must be the full name.

Emrakul, the Aeons Torn 15
Legendary Creature – Eldrazi (M)
Emrakul can't be countered.
When you cast Emrakul, take an extra turn after this one.
Flying, protection from colored spells, annihilator 6
When Emrakul is put into a graveyard from anywhere, its owner shuffles his or her graveyard into his or her library.

(Here the problem is that the first instance of the card name must be the full name. Only the following ones can be truncated, as they are in Emrakul.)

Emrakul, the Aeons Torn

Other examples: Godo, Bandit Warlord, Grimgrin, Corpse-Born, Kozilek, Butcher of Truth, Mikaeus, the Lunarch, Obzedat, Ghost Council, Polukranos, World Eater.

42 – Token-making effects
There is a specific sequence of words to use:
“put [NUMBER] [P/T of the tokens] [COLORS of the tokens] [CREATURE TYPES of the tokens] creature token(s) (with [ABILITY]) onto the battlefield (under [PLAYER]'s control)”
Pay attention to put all those parameters in the right order. If the player is not specified, the default is the tokens enter the battlefield under your control. Otherwise, you must specify the player under whose control they enter the battlefield.
If the tokens have only keyword abilities, list them after the word “token(s)”. If they have more complex abilities that need to be written out, put them in another sentence after the token creating effect: “It has / They have [ABILITY]” (see Skittering Invasion for an example).

Hordeling Outburst 1RR
Sorcery (U)
Put three red Goblin 1/1 tokens onto the battlefield.
"Leave no scraps, lest you attract pests."
—Mardu threat

Hordeling Outburst

Other examples: Raise the Alarm, Talrand's Invocation and Talrand, Sky Summoner, Bestial Menace.

43 – Looting and other “draw, then discard” effects
Always remember there must be a comma separating the draw part and the discard part!

Research Assistant 1U
Creature – Human Wizard (C)
3U, T: Draw a card then discard a card.
There are many words and phrases that can cause an experienced wizard to tremble in fear. Chief among them is "oops."

Research Assistant

Other examples: Enhanced Awareness, Bloodfire Mentor, Desolate Lighthouse, Izzet Charm (last mode), Merfolk Looter.

44 – Order of mana symbols in mana costs
First, remember that colorless mana symbols always come before colored ones in mana costs!
For the colored part, there is a very specific order that mana symbols and color words must follow in costs and rules text. The order comes from the color wheel, which you can find on the back of any Magic card (well, except for double-faced cards of course). Remember that we define two colors as “allied” if they are adjacent and “enemy” if they are opposite in the color wheel. All the following reasoning will be exposed in terms of mana symbols in costs, but just substitute the corresponding color words and you have the order for them in rules text.
The logic for monocolored costs is to start with white and go clockwise (the so-called “WURBG order”).
For two-colored costs, locate the two colors on the color wheel and find the order that gives you the shortest path possible always going clockwise. Then, to order the ten color pairs you just obtained among themselves, put those with allied colors first in WUBRG order and then those with enemy colors, also in WUBRG order. Each color will be the first in one allied color couple and in one enemy color couple. Each color will also be the last in one allied color couple and in one enemy color couple.
For three-colored costs you must first separate shards from wedges. Shards (also called “arcs”) are made of a color and its two allies, which are written as the two-colored combinations were, that is finding the shortest clockwise path in WUBRG order. Wedges are made of a color and its two enemies, and there are two equally valid ways to write them. The traditional one is again to find the shortest clockwise path in WUBRG order. The newest way, used in Tarkir block, is to put the common enemy in the center with the preceding color in WUBRG order at its left and the following color in WUBRG order at its right. This is done for three reasons: first, to mirror the shards that have their central color always in the middle. Then, to emphasize the fact that a wedge is made up of two enemy-colored pairs sharing a color. Written this way, in fact, both enemy-colored pairs become visible at a glance. Finally, to put the main color of the corresponding clan in first place so that it's more evident.
For four-colored costs, again you find the shortest clockwise path in WUBRG order, which will start with the color immediately following the only missing one and will end with the color immediately preceding the missing one.
Five colored costs always have the symbols in WUBRG order.
All this gives us the following order, which must always be respected, no matter what:
WU (Azorius)
UB (Dimir)
BR (Rakdos)
RG (Gruul)
GW (Selesnya) (*)
WB (Orzhov)
UR (Izzet)
BG (Golgari)
RW (Boros)
GU (Simic)
WUB (Esper)
UBR (Grixis)
BRG (Jund)
RGW (Naya) (*)
GWU (Bant) (*)
WBR in traditional order, WBG (Abzan) in Tarkir order
URG in traditional order, URW (Jeskai) in Tarkir order
BGW (*) in traditional order, BGU (Sultai) in Tarkir order
RWU (*) in traditional order, RWB (Mardu) in Tarkir order
GUB (*) in traditional order, GUR (Temur) in Tarkir order
BRGW (*)
RGWU (*)
GWUB (*)
(*) Remember: we are looking for the shortest clockwise path, WUBRG order kicks in only after that!

Armored Wolf-Rider WG3 (look at the mana cost, can't underline it)
Creature – Elf Knight (C)
Wolf-riders of Selesnya apprentice from a young age. Each rider raises a wolf pup from birth to serve as a mount, hoping that one day the two will share the honor of guarding the Great Concourse.

Armored Wolf-Rider

45 – “must attack” / “must block”
”Must” must not be there! These are simply written “attacks each turn if able” or “blocks each turn if able”. Don't forget the “if able” part! If a creature is not able to attack or block for any reason (for example, if it's already tapped), then it can't be forced to do so!

Valley Dasher 1R
Creature – Human Berserker (C)
Valley Dasher must attack each turn.
Mardu riders' greatest fear is that a battle might end before their weapons draw blood.

Valley Dasher

Other examples: Mogis's Warhound, Juggernaut, Spirespine.

46 – Reminder text
It must always be in italics! I'm surprised at how many times I saw reminder text not written in italics lately.

Mardu Scout RR
Creature - Goblin Scout(C)
Dash 1R (You may cast this spell for its dash cost. If you do, it gains haste, and it's returned from the battlefield to its owner's hand at the beginning of the next end step.)
The Mardu all enjoy war, but only the goblins make a game of it.

Mardu Scout

47 – “You” (courtesy of Astrolabe)
“You” is only specified for life gain or life loss effects. No other effect ever specifies “you”, unless it's paired with life gain or life loss, in which case it does.

Divination 2U
Sorcery (C)
You draw two cards.
"The key to unlocking this puzzle is within you."
—Doriel, mentor of Mistral Isle


Other examples: Whitesun's Passage, Night's Whisper.

48 – “Dies”
“Dies” means “is put into a graveyard from the battlefield”. It doesn't matter whose graveyard the creature goes to, it can be any graveyard. If which graveyard it is matters for any reason, you can't use “dies” and you must use “is put into [PLAYER]'s graveyard from the battlefield”.
Also, “dies” is used only for creatures. An artifact, enchantment, land, or even a planeswalker does not “die”, but it's “put into a graveyard from the battlefield”.
Finally, when you say “put into a graveyard” you must remember to always specify from where. If anywhere counts, you must specify “from anywhere” anyway.

Saffi Eriksdotter GW
Legendary Creature – Human Scout (R)
Sacrifice Saffi Eriksdotter: When target creature dies this turn, return that card to the battlefield.
In the blink of an eye, she strode from deep snow to dusty waste. From the crease of light behind her, a voice rang hollow: "Saffi, wait for me...."

(Here you can't use “dies” because actually it cares whose graveyard it is, see the real card below.)

Saffi Eriksdotter

Other examples: Bridge from Below, Colfenor's Urn, Enigma Sphinx, Fresh Meat, Kithkin Mourncaller, Nether Traitor (all this care about whose graveyard it is).
Goblin Boom Keg (it's not a creature, so you can't use “dies”).

A little grammar

Just a couple grammar mistakes to finally arrive to number 50!

49 – Plural card names (courtesy of Thought Criminal)
When using a plural card name, the object should always be referred to as "it", and verbs should be of the singular form.

Tibor and Lumia 2UR
Legendary Creature – Human Wizard (R)
Whenever you cast a blue spell, target creature gains flying until end of turn.
Whenever you cast a red spell, Tibor and Lumia deal 1 damage to each creature without flying.
Tracing the horizon in a dance of wind and fire.

Tibor and Lumia

50 – Saxon genitive in card names
When a word ends in “s” and needs a Saxon genitive, you must use ‘s if the name is a singular name. If it's a plural name, just put the apostrophe without the “s”.

Rakdos' Return XBR
Sorcery (M)
Rakdos' Return deals X damage to target opponent. That player discards X cards.
When Lord Rakdos stirred from his slumber, everyone else's nightmare began.

Rakdos's Return

Other examples: Mogis's Warhound, All Suns' Dawn, Archers' Parapet, Erebos's Emissary, Heroes' Bane, Purphoros's Emissary, Enchantress's Presence, Raiders' Spoils, Slayers' Stronghold.

Signing out

50 mistakes in two weeks should be more than enough for now. I hope I'm going to see less, or ideally none of them after these detailed articles. I think I'm going to point to these articles a lot in the future, especially in my judgings for the various contests.
The next time I'll talk about something else, and I already have a couple ideas in my mind. In the meantime, if you've got more mistakes to report, just do so in this article's thread or last week's one's and I'll see it. Maybe there will be a part 3 in the future. Certainly not next week, at least to have a break and change the topic for a while.

Until next time,