Judge opinion: Unclear cardname in decklist.

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I would like judges to state how they would rule in the following situation:

It's a sanctioned Legacy tournament at Competetive REL. At the start of round two, as the players have just started shuffling, a judge comes across a decklist with a card name he can't read. It's
Dis?igu?? (with 1-3 unknown letters at the end).
He consults another judge who also cannot identify the card name. They call upon the player who claims that the card is Disfigure, and shows them his sideboard with said card.
No reminder to check legality of decklists was made at the start of the tournament.

What penalty should be issued, and what fix(es) to the deck/decklist should be made?
is there another card that fits the Dis?igu?? template?
proud member of the 2011 community team
Psh. Legacy is not a real format.
Real men hold shift. If everyone has their fingers in the pie, then someone is eating fingers.
I typed "dis igu" into gatherer (without the quotes) and Disfigure was the only result.

I'd write it in more clearly on the decklsit next to the original.

Since there is no ambiguity from the letters you could make out, tell him to write clearer next time and issue no warning.

Psh. Legacy is not a real skill-based format.

Fix'd

Rules Advisor

Please autocard: [c]Shard Phoenix[/c] = Shard Phoenix.

I typed "dis igu" into gatherer (without the quotes) and Disfigure was the only result.

The best guess was that the fourth letter was a 't'. That yielded no results on Gatherer.

Since there is no ambiguity from the letters you could make out, tell him to write clearer next time and issue no warning.

What if the judges weren't as good as guessing as you just were, and failed to identify any candidate?

What if the judges weren't as good as guessing as you just were, and failed to identify any candidate?



Who needs to guess anything?  He typed the six letters you provided with a space in the middle into Gatherer and found one result.  No guessing needed.
I didn't guess. I types the letters you identified in your post into gatherer (which judges always have access to) and only one result came up. Try it yourself.

Rules Advisor

Please autocard: [c]Shard Phoenix[/c] = Shard Phoenix.

Regardless, the judge should just ask you what is written there, and then it should be easy to determine whether that fits. Most likely, they'll say "Oh, THAT'S what that says... please write more legibly next time."

Worst case, the judge thinks the description is still too indistinct such that it could be more than one card legal in the format, and they fix it to match what you're playing and issue a game loss. Your mileage may vary. 

Level 3 DCI Judge Mission Viejo, CA

Speaking as a non-judge (so just a personal opinon):

The only way someone could benefit from something like this is if the text was sufficiently ambiguous that it could equally be interpreted as naming two or more different cards, and the cards would both be situationally useful in the deck, and the player had both cards on hand to switch as needed, and the player was able to perform the switch without it being noticed.

That seems like it's not something that's likely to happen. If the player says what the text was supposed to be, and that sort of matches what was written, then the problem was almost certainly just sloppy handwriting.

(If it was something like writing just "Jace", there'd clearly be a bigger problem.)
I agree that it would be difficult (and dumb) to try to gain advantage through ambiguous card names on a deck list. However, we aren't asked to check the player for copies of any possible card name it could be (that's probably illegal), and we shouldn't have to make decisions about how strategically viable a possible card name would be in any given deck.

The reason for the penaly being a game loss for Deck/Decklist Problem is not simply a potential for advantage (indeed, everyone pretty much knows they can never get away with this, because of the policy), but also for the disruption caused to the tournament. A judge has to notice the error, confirm with others, then find the player and check the deck. This is time taken from doing other things for the event, and the game loss also addresses that.

That being said, I can't think of a case of sloppy handwriting that resulted in a game loss. It's when a card name is truncated (as you mentioned, "Jace" is problematic) that you're likely to get yourself in trouble. 

Level 3 DCI Judge Mission Viejo, CA

I didn't guess. I types the letters you identified in your post into gatherer (which judges always have access to) and only one result came up. Try it yourself.

I did. As I said, it was believed to be a 't' and "distigu" gives no results.

That being said, I can't think of a case of sloppy handwriting that resulted in a game loss.

Well, now you have one.



It's always a judgement call, but if I can't read it to the point that I don't know what card you meant or I don't know which of two possible cards you meant, you're probably getting a game loss (I don't use Gatherer, because if I can't figure out what card you meant, you were not being clear enough).

Having said that, it almost never happens. The first thing I thought when I saw those letters was 'Disfigure'. I would check, and if it was Disfigure I would give you a lecture about how you should really write more clearly (including something along the lines of 'I almost gave you a GL'), but let it go.

I could see other people giving our Game Losses for this however and would not argue against it.

DCI Level 2 Judge

 

"That's what's so stupid about the whole magic thing, you know," Rincewind said. "You spend twenty years learning the spell that makes nude virgins appear in your bedroom, and then you're so poisoned by quicksilver fumes and half-blind from reading old grimoires that you can't remember what happens next."

- Terry Pratchett, The Colour Of Magic

If you issue a game loss in a paid-entry tournament because of bad penmanship, and it turns out that player had bad penmanship as a result of, say, a disfigurement (irony!) or physical/mental incapacity of any form, you may be hearing from a lawyer.

Even the holier-than-thou 'lecture' would make you look like a damned fool. 
I did. As I said, it was believed to be a 't' and "distigu" gives no results.



So why not type the legible tokens "dis" and "igu" into gatherer with a space inbetween?  That finds "Disfigure", and disfigure only.  Again, no need to guess at the missing letter.

If you issue a game loss in a paid-entry tournament because of bad penmanship, and it turns out that player had bad penmanship as a result of, say, a disfigurement (irony!) or physical/mental incapacity of any form, you may be hearing from a lawyer.

Even the holier-than-thou 'lecture' would make you look like a damned fool. 

There's always dysgraphia, which is a common accompaniment to dyslexia—which itself is a well-documented learning disorder that affects millions of people.
To whom it may concern: it's getting really old, being unable to see the top half of anything autocarded in the first post of each thread. Fixplz,kthx.
In my experience, most handicapped players are well aware of their own incapacities and act to circumvent them with such things as pre-typed decklists, aides, or asking the judges for help when necessary. They don't generally tend to try to plow on through and then blame others when their disability causes problems.

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do you have to give the judges a list of your deckk before a FNM event? do they have a form for this or does it need to be printed?
do you have to give the judges a list of your deck before a FNM event?

if the Head Judge requires a list, yes
do they have a form for this or does it need to be printed?

there is a form, but you can submit a deck list without using the form.
Players are required to register their decks and sideboards (if applicable) in Competitive and Professional REL tournaments. The Head Judge may require registration in Regular REL tournaments.

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It's atypical for the judge or tournament organizer to require a decklist at an FNM or Prerelease, but he's well within his rights to do so.