When a controversy in a tournament is the key to renewing the rules of Magic: The Gathering


This is an initiative in collaboration with Wizards of the Coast.

There are those who say that the rules are there to break thembut I don’t think the judges of Magic: The Gathering be very happy with the statement. These titans know the ins and outs of the game by heart so they can be there when there is a question in the middle of the competition.

But sometimes, even if the rules are not meant to be broken, they can be complex enough to motivate change. You know what they say with the spelling rules, that in the end it is common speech that dictates if it follows one path or another.

in these Magic Chronicles we’re going to find out that the same thing happens in the Wizards of the Coast card game, and it’s not something that’s happened just a couple of times. These amazing tournament controversies were the key to change magic rules.

The creatures with the creatures and the lands with the lands

The first time I heard about this story in one of the very interesting videos about tournament curiosities nikachu I could’nt believe it. I present to you the great protagonist of this surreal encounter, the dryad bower.

As you will see below, during its beginnings this card, which is both land and creature, had the mana symbol on its bottom like any other land while showing its attack power and toughness in the bottom right corner.

Halfway between absentmindedness and picaresque, a player placed his Dryad in the mana zone, managing to fool an opponent who, oblivious to the fact that there was one more creature on the table, met his last attack unaware that he could actually be stopped by that elusive card.

The owner of the Dryad got away with it, but since Wizards of the Coast they understood to what extent this situation could become a problem and since then all creatures must be placed in their own zone to avoid possible confusion. Even if that creature is also a land.

You know what card I’m talking about

I have lost count of the times that I have gone to name a card that I have seen hundreds of times and the name did not come out, or only one of the invented names that I use for them came to mind. It seems difficult for the same thing to happen to an expert player, but stranger things have been seen.

To show a button. On the table there is a deck with a devastating combo in which the card Borborygmos Enraged it’s the key to gaining and sacrificing lands while the action deals three damage to the enemy player or creature. If it goes well, a simple accumulation of land is enough to blow up the opponent.

Borborygmos

Despite this, on the other side is the perfect card to stop that combo, a Medullary Needle that, when entering the battlefield, allows us to choose the name of a card so that all the abilities of that card cannot be activated.

Anyone would jump into the pool as soon as they pick up the card to stop their rival, but in this case there is a detail that would completely change the situation. When naming the card the player said Borborygmos instead of Borborygmos Enraged and unfortunately for him magic there is another different letter that is called only Borborygmos.

There was little they could do for a referee who wanted to follow the rules to the letter and an opponent who saw the sky open by taking advantage of the situation. He had stopped the abilities of another card, not the one he planned to play, so he handed the win to her.

The rules have since been changed so that players could quote what a card does or what it looks like to name which card they wanted to affect. It is no longer necessary to know by heart the exact nameand simply by context they can choose the appropriate card.

You have to speak properly

The latest example of the extent to which the problems that arise in tournaments can be key to renewing the way we play magic it is in the case of a match in which speaking properly became more than enough reason to turn the tables on the game.

As you already know the turn in magic It has several phases that go from straightening our cards to the second phase of the game after the combat. Well, although for those of us who play MTG Arena Following all these steps is sucky, in the middle of a tournament and with your nerves on edge, it can play tricks on you.

Well, not really anymore, because there is no way to skip steps or take shortcuts when attacking. Everything since a professional player said “I’m going to fight” and the opponent understood that he was going to attack.

With this the first player would have skipped the start of the fight and the possibility of buffing his creatures before declaring the attackers, but both the opponent and the judges understood that his words meant that he was going straight to attack, thus making that first phase of the combat impossible.

Since then the game rules do not allow skipping phases, so if a player says he is going to attack or enters the damage phase, he will actually jump to the beginning of the combat phase and the game will continue from there. Doubts are over.

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