clarify of the comp rules

2 posts / 0 new
Last post
so there are a lot of things i wish the comp rules were more clear on. i'm just going to give two examples to see if it's just me, or if other people feel the same way, too.

my wish was that the comp rules were clear enough to understand without the need of some outside party telling you what they actually mean. in the following two cases, i don't believe this to be the case (but i'd like to hear if other people agree with me or not).

example #1

in the section that outlines steps taken to cast a spell:
601.2g. The player pays the total cost in any order. Partial payments are not allowed. Unpayable costs can't be paid.

this is the rule that is relevant to the following question in a cranialinsertion article:
Q: I have nine green mana in my mana pool, and cast <a href="" rel="nofollow">Momentous Fall</a> sacrificing <a href=",%20Locus%20of%20Mana" rel="nofollow">Omnath, Locus of Mana</a>. How many cards do I get?

the costs i have to pay are sacrificing a creature, and paying for momentus fall's mana cost. i can do this in either order, resulting in different number of cards i get; but i'm not allowed to pay part of the mana cost first, sacrifice the creature, then pay the rest of the mana cost.

but if you only read the rule above ("Partial payments are not allowed."), the thought of paying part of the mana cost first, and then part of it later, probably wouldn't come to mind. instead, what would probably come to mind is "You aren't allowed to only pay part of all the costs, such as paying only when casting a Grizzly Bears, and think that this is sufficient for casting the spell!".

this is one example where i wish the rules gave an example, or at least had more words than what they had here.

example 2:

616.1. If two or more replacement and/or prevention effects are attempting to modify the way an event affects an object or player, the affected object's controller (or its owner if it has no controller) or the affected player chooses one to apply, following the steps listed below.

when i first read this rule, i did not understand properly what "the affected player" or "the affected object's controller" meant. i got the following situation wrong, for example: suppose i had an Eager Cadet that is attacking and is unblocked, and there is a Furnace of Rath and a Gisela, Blade of Goldnight controlled by my opponent. i had thought that the affected object/player would be my Eager Cadet [given that how much damage it will deal is being changed]. but really, the affected object/player is my opponent given that the change in game state will be my opponent's life total.

now, /technically/ this rule is sufficient to tell me what the affect object/player is, but it's FAR from clear. i believe that the rules should be really clear, so that when you read it, you get the proper idea! (it's enough work to read the comp rules; it's frusterating to read them and misinterpret them just because they weren't written in a more clear way!)

so do other people feel that the rules should be more clear on these two points, or is it just me?
First of all, your overall complaint (the rules aren't clear enough) is a big part of what goes on in this forum. Speaking as someone who doesn't participate a whole lot but lurks and finds some of the discussion fascinating. So don't worry. But I think most people who frequent this forum would disagree that outside help is necessary to interpret the rules, other than a strong sense of logical reasoning and solid grasp of English. The rules aren't needlessly complex except in a few areas which people in this forum are usually adept at catching. They're as complex as they need to be to handle the gazillions of interactions that happen between the thousands of cards.


For your first example, I think you might have something there. To me, the only thing that matters is that you've paid all the costs in that one step. To me that could mean any of:
- pay then sacrifice Omnath
- pay then sacrifice Omnath then pay
- pay then sacrifice Omnath then pay
- sacrifice Omnath then pay
or any of the permutations in between. To me, none of those constitute "partial payments". But every ruling I've ever seen implies that your choices are only the first or the last.

As for the second example, I don't see how it's unclear. It says "attempting to modify the way an event affects an object or player, the affected object's controller [or player] [chooses]", which pretty deliberately avoids implying that the controller of the replacement effect's source matters. So you look at the event, you ask "what/who is affected by the outcome of the event?" and you go from there. I admit it trips people up, probably because they're used to being told "APNAP order" so much.

Do you have a suggestion for an improvement?
Sign In to post comments