MAGIC 2010 RULES CHANGES (2nd thread)

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Eric Sorensen
Wizards of the Coast
Organized Play

I'll need to see the complete CR before I can make a full opinion.
Right now, it seems appropriate to me to just adapt and get on with life.
While I understand how everyone is arguing "everything uses the stack" as a reason that combat damage should be. But it's the only damage that uses the stack. And even if you look at combat, declaring attackers and declaring blockers both don't use the stack. The only aspect of combat that uses the stack is damage, and this is the only instance of damage going on the stack in the game. I feel like that is the reason the old way is inconsistent and unintuitive.
I like the renaming, except for Wishes changed, and Battlefield. Someone suggested Reality, I quite liked that. A lot of other people might not though.
I dislike manaburn changes.
I hate combat changes.

I still really don't know how this new way of assigning damage works.

Yxoque wrote:
This forum can't even ****ing self-destruct properly.

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While I understand how everyone is arguing "everything uses the stack" as a reason that combat damage should be. But it's the only damage that uses the stack. And even if you look at combat, declaring attackers and declaring blockers both don't use the stack. The only aspect of combat that uses the stack is damage, and this is the only instance of damage going on the stack in the game. I feel like that is the reason the old way is inconsistent and unintuitive.

Only because it would be redundant to put a spell or ability on the stack and then the damage from the spell after it resolves. Functionally speaking it allows you to respond to the damage as if it were on the stack.
Why not just have effects/combat-dmg not fizzling depend on their source still being in play? that fixes everything without breaking things so royally. ie. the blocking-order craziness and its pile of exceptions/proper-uses (deathtouch/firststrike/banding/prevention/regen)

if i sack my quasali pridemage, sure make it so that when damage resolves it sees that it is gone and therefore the damage it would have dealt fizzles.. or same for unsummoning tricks, but these block order and lethal damage assignment requirements makes the game SOOO much more complex.
Wow, I have to say as someone who has played since Fallen Empires...Most of these rules changes are crap.

Magic has always been an evolving game.

Yet, now it is de-evolving.

Anyone wanna play Go-Fish? I think the newer players might want to start there instead of making the game less fun for us who like strategy.
Look lets make flavorful analogies (because we know wizards now is shoving "flavor" down our throats)

Stacked damage:
Theway I envisioned it is this. Lets say mogg fanatic has a grenade. Now he gets into a fight with a knight and he punches the knight while the knight stabs him. Things don't die instantly from a stab wound. They just don't. Now the stab I imagine as damage on the stack, he has already been stabbed but lethal wound has yet to take effect and kill him. He still has time to toss a grenade at something, or better yet, use that grenade to blow up the injured knight.

Blocking order:
Now lets say I pick a fight with two guys. What is NOT going to happen is me saying "He you wait over there for a second while I beat up your friend. Once I am done I will come after you." No, that's some nonsensical crap.
Wow, I have to say as someone who has played since Fallen Empires...Most of these rules changes are crap.

Magic has always been an evolving game.

Yet, now it is de-evolving.

Anyone wanna play Go-Fish? I think the newer players might want to start there instead of making the game less fun for us who like strategy.

We could play risk. But I think newer players would get confused with the die rolling so we should just take that out.
Why not just have effects/combat-dmg not fizzling depend on their source still being in play? that fixes everything without breaking things so royally. ie. the blocking-order craziness and its pile of exceptions/proper-uses (deathtouch/firststrike/banding/prevention/regen)

if i sack my quasali pridemage, sure make it so that when damage resolves it sees that it is gone and therefore the damage it would have dealt fizzles.. or same for unsummoning tricks, but these block order and lethal damage assignment requirements makes the game SOOO much more complex.

Wow, I have to say as someone who has played since Fallen Empires...Most of these rules changes are crap.

Magic has always been an evolving game.

Yet, now it is de-evolving.

Anyone wanna play Go-Fish? I think the newer players might want to start there instead of making the game less fun for us who like strategy.

I love how people can't decide whether they're dumbing down the game or making it too complicated.

My take on it: It's still complicated. But now it's simple too. Easy to learn, hard to master, as it should be.

And the people who think the game is now too easy and all the strategy is gone are going to get blown out of the water by the people who use the new rules to their advantage and develop new strategies. None of this "Hey, Mogg Fanatic does 2 damage if I say the right words. I'm awesome at this game".
The World of Eldangard - a three act M:tG block by Fallingman Eldangard Stormfront Ragnarok
Blocking order:
Now lets say I pick a fight with two guys. What is NOT going to happen is me saying "He you wait over there for a second while I beat up your friend. Once I am done I will come after you." No, that's some nonsensical crap.

this is exactly correct. plz wotc listen to the flavor!
I've said this several times in the previous thread, so I'll just have to remind everyone here:

These new mechanics that UTTERLY DISENFRANCHISE serious players will NOT change the opinions of beginners of the game. It will NOT be the difference between someone who quits and someone who stays. In a casual environment, these changes mean VERY little. Most beginners and SOME casual players(probably not most) will be neutral about these new mechanics AT BEST. However, as we have already seen, MOST competitive players(and possibly a lot of casual players, as well) DISLIKE the changes, and some people already plan on quitting the game when these mechanics come into play. I would really like to know how this actually helps bring in more new players.
Wow that old thread had an average of 100 posts ever hour...that's crazy. I don't think even Magic 8th edition face change had this much backlash...or if it did it was in a lot of different topics.

So far people are doing a great job of keeping it in one place. That does a couple of things: it makes it so us at Wizards only have to keep up with one main thread, and it keeps the rest of the forum clear for other topics (I know it's surprising that anyone would want to talk about something else, but there are a few).

Thank you all for also keeping this mostly civil. We've seen other sites that haven't been, and it's so much harder to read their feedback.

Eric Sorensen
Wizards of the Coast
Organized Play

Blocking order:
Now lets say I pick a fight with two guys. What is NOT going to happen is me saying "He you wait over there for a second while I beat up your friend. Once I am done I will come after you." No, that's some nonsensical crap.

But are you going to lightly punch each of them hoping that they'll just fall down long enough for a meteor to come out of the sky and finish them off, or are you going to focus on one of them until they are down and then turn to the next one?

That's how I think about it in terms of flavor.

Eric Sorensen
Wizards of the Coast
Organized Play

While I understand how everyone is arguing "everything uses the stack" as a reason that combat damage should be. But it's the only damage that uses the stack.

That is not correct.

Damage is dealt when an object on the stack resolves. That object might be the Combat Damage Object (which holds the information about the assignment of combat damage), a spell such as Lightning Bolt or an ability such as Pandemonium's.

In all cases there is an object on the stack that, when it resolves, deals damage. While the object is on the stack, players may play spells and abilities to modify the damage.

In a month, combat damage becomes a special class of damage that cannot be responded to. It is assigned, then it happens. This has never, ever, been true before.

It's true that before April 1999 you couldn't respond to the assignment of combat damage, but you could still play damage-prevention spells and abilities after damage had been assigned and before your damaged creature died.

Now? You can't.
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But are you going to lightly punch each of them hoping that they'll just fall down long enough for a meteor to come out of the sky and finish them off, or are you going to focus on one of them until they are down and then turn to the next one?

That's how I think about it in terms of flavor.

Basically this... I'm a 5/4 facing off against two 3/3's... I've only got so much fight in me so I use 3 to kill one, and die trying to kill the last one.

But if the planeswalker on whose battlefield I have currently been summoned wishes for me to give up my life to evenly distribute the pain that I can being to a fight, then I should have that option right? Maybe my master has a volcano ready to errupt.

3DH4LIF3

But are you going to lightly punch each of them hoping that they'll just fall down long enough for a meteor to come out of the sky and finish them off, or are you going to focus on one of them until they are down and then turn to the next one?

That's how I think about it in terms of flavor.

You can ask any skilled martial artist out there. Most of them will tell you that it is foolish to completely debilitate each of your opponents if more than one person is attacking you. You only hit them enough to fend them off, not enough to kill them before you fight someone else.

It is also shown in natural instinct. For example, if a lion is being attacked by two wolves, the lion will not take his time to rip the heads off the wolves one at a time. He will do whatever he can to fend them both off at the same time to keep himself safe. If there is a second wolf attacking him, he will not continue attacking just the first one while ignoring the second one.
But are you going to lightly punch each of them hoping that they'll just fall down long enough for a meteor to come out of the sky and finish them off, or are you going to focus on one of them until they are down and then turn to the next one?

That's how I think about it in terms of flavor.

if i knew the meteor was coming and they didn't...

On another Note one has to question why Cards like Qasali Pridemage were even in newer editions when Wizards knew they would be utterly worthless after M10.
This is how I read the combat changes.


We got tired of good players taking advantage of scrubs because good players played all of their effects after saying "combat damage on the stack?" and bad players played all of their effects before that. Thus we have decided ALL players must do it before so that bad players have a chance. Oh and by the way because we did this, we decided to screw up the way you can deal damage, so that the good players who understand how to use pyroclasm like spells cannot gain the full effect of them because they have to apply damage like all the bad players do now also.
I wasn't going to wade into this conversation but I guess I can't help myself... Everyone is pointing out that this vastly reduces combat tricks, and it does. What people are forgetting is its not just combat tricks that get dialed back. Being forced to assign "lethal damage" can disrupt any number of potentially advantageous situations.

Quick example:

I attack with [Fusion Elemental].

They block with [Wilt-Leaf Liege], [Scattershot Archer], and [Scattershot Archer].

In the old rules I could assign damage in such a way that after combat all of the defending creatures would die...

If I'm understanding correctly... Under the new rules I would only be able to kill two of the three. I would be forced to send 4 to the liege, 3 to archer#one, and 1 to archer#two.

There are countless other scenarios where things like this will/do happen. Its not just combat tricks that get hosed here.

This came from the first thread before it was closed. It's a great example of why having to assign lethal damage in sequential order is so stupid - no tricks or anything, just good old math with a lord involved. If I assign lethal damage to a lord (or any pumping creature - slivers, anyone?), the actual damage required to kill everything else has gone down, but the new rule forces you to waste damage by double assigning it. How is that intuitive? Or fun?
If I know that Im being backed up by the dude with the giant fireball, then of course I would hit one once and the other once and then let that fireball finish them off.

Fights between many people and one person dont actually happen like they do in action movies.

The way these rules changes randomly nerfs thousands of cards is just silly.

Also, its no more intuitive OR simple. So why the change?

I'm hoping maro has some better explanations on monday. The weak explanation given by Mago and Forsythe do not come close to explaining the need for a change this massive.
I really hate the new rules listing, specifically combat damage!

but I can probably get used to it.

What I have a problem with is death touch.

I like that death touch no longer stacks, but it's ignorant that you can divide the damage up however you choose!

you JUST gave us new rules stating that you choose the order in which creatures block and that you must kill them in that order.

but during the same release of rules, you state that even WIZARDS OF THE COAST does not like this rule when applied to death touch! With death touch you can divide the damage however you choose? wtf? why? The death touch creature should have to follow the new combat rules just like everyone else!

if you don't like it, then DON'T change combat! It's FINE the way it is currently!!!!
Blocking order:
Now lets say I pick a fight with two guys. What is NOT going to happen is me saying "He you wait over there for a second while I beat up your friend. Once I am done I will come after you." No, that's some nonsensical crap.

The point you're missing is that the damage isn't sequential. While you're busy fighting guy A, guy B is still pounding on you with his fists. It's not orderly, which is exactly why you can't deal pinpoint amounts of damage to each guy you're fighting.

Ugh, I can't believe I'm arguing flavor. The fact remains that you can visualize your battles being just as awesome or just as stupid as your imagination desires. If you think the flavor is bad, reinterpret it so it makes more sense.
The World of Eldangard - a three act M:tG block by Fallingman Eldangard Stormfront Ragnarok
But are you going to lightly punch each of them hoping that they'll just fall down long enough for a meteor to come out of the sky and finish them off, or are you going to focus on one of them until they are down and then turn to the next one?

That's how I think about it in terms of flavor.

Why would I turn my back on one to attack the other? Seems like I am asking for him to bash my head in. Would you really try to ignore one guy who is beating you on the back of the head in the hopes of beating up his friend?
That is not correct.

Damage is dealt when an object on the stack resolves. That object might be the Combat Damage Object (which holds the information about the assignment of combat damage), a spell such as Lightning Bolt or an ability such as Pandemonium's.

In all cases there is an object on the stack that, when it resolves, deals damage. While the object is on the stack, players may play spells and abilities to modify the damage.

In a month, combat damage becomes a special class of damage that cannot be responded to. It is assigned, then it happens. This has never, ever, been true before.

It's true that before April 1999 you couldn't respond to the assignment of combat damage, but you could still play damage-prevention spells and abilities after damage had been assigned and before your damaged creature died.

Now? You can't.

Sure you can. When blocks are declared, the attacker orders the blockers, which is indicative of the damage they will receive. Does it change the way you can save your creatures? yes. Do I like it? no. WIll it create new and interesting combat scenarios? Hopefully!

But its not fair to say you can't play combat tricks to save your creatures. We're all just gonna have to reevalute the combat phase.

3DH4LIF3

but those alternate damage SOURCES use the stack, so one can argue all damage does use the stack in some way. Why shouldn't combat damage?

and in what was was the old way inconsistent and unintuitive? It was a simple process. Combat concluded, damage went on the stack, each player gained priority in turn to respond to the damage on the stack, whether that be by activating abilities or playing a spell to save their creatures. I don't see how this was inconsistent. Seems consistent to me.

The whole reason they are eliminating combat damage from the stack is because young players complain about experienced players using the stack to pull off combat tricks when they could take the five minutes it takes to learn how the stack works and use it themselves. Its a simple concept. Really, it is.

For those who say its against the flavor of the game to sac a creature with damage on the stack, take a look at the picture of Mogg Fanatic. It looks like he's carrying a powder bomb. How is it not with the flavor of the game for him to do some damage, realize he's outmatched, then set off the bomb to finish off his opponent? Seems to me that fits the flavor of a Mogg FANATIC pretty well.

If they plan on going through with this change to combat, they at least need to leave it open to revision after a couple tournaments to see how much they screw with everything. It would also be a good thing if they actually tested these rules with tournament decks in tournament conditions before putting them into effect.

My whole opinion is that I can live with the changes except for combat damage. Sure, losing lifelink stacking sucks, but I can suck it up and deal. The combat damage, though, is going to do serious damage to competitive magic. An entire class of cards has just been rendered nearly worthless.

Qasali Pridemage
Mogg Fanatic
Dauntless Escort
and a host of others

These changes are going to take a lot of the skill out of magic. If you don't think that eliminating the stack from combat damage is a big deal, ask any player who's ever used a Mogg fanatic to 2 for 1, or a Qasali Pridemage to pop a bitterblossom against tokens when its combo-blocked, or the dauntless escort player when he blocks that 4/3 and then saves his buddies. This is a major deal. You casual players won't notice much, but we tournament players will.

If you and your playgroup want to play without the stack for combat damge and with the blocker ordering, that's fine. Its called "House Rules". Leave the combat system the way it is. It matters in tournament play.

As a side note, Mark Rosewater, according to his twitter, is looking for feedback on the new rules. Go over to his column, click email reply, and tell him what you think. I think my link to his email is on page 26 of the old thread.
This came from the first thread before it was closed. It's a great example of why having to assign lethal damage in sequential order is so stupid - no tricks or anything, just good old math with a lord involved. If I assign lethal damage to a lord (or any pumping creature - slivers, anyone?), the actual damage required to kill everything else has gone down, but the new rule forces you to waste damage by double assigning it. How is that intuitive? Or fun?

Its intuitive, and its fun. The Lord was there and saved the other dudes. Its fun if you play with the Lord.

The Status Quo has been changed in certain situations is all.

Though I will dearly miss the three for 1's that you can get from old combat.

3DH4LIF3

But are you going to lightly punch each of them hoping that they'll just fall down long enough for a meteor to come out of the sky and finish them off, or are you going to focus on one of them until they are down and then turn to the next one?

That's how I think about it in terms of flavor.

YES! I'm going to punch them both in the nose.....and then die a happy death knowing that I caused them both a little pain in my no win situation, and hopefully my plansewalker that summoned me there will avenge my death with a pyroclasm
The point you're missing is that the damage isn't sequential. While you're busy fighting guy A, guy B is still pounding on you with his fists. It's not orderly, which is exactly why you can't deal pinpoint amounts of damage to each guy you're fighting.

Ugh, I can't believe I'm arguing flavor. The fact remains that you can visualize your battles being just as awesome or just as stupid as your imagination desires. If you think the flavor is bad, reinterpret it so it makes more sense.

But why would I be completely focused on guy A if guy B was hitting me? Sure I can, but realistically I wont. The point is that I have a choice on what to do, instead of having a choice forced upon me.
On being able to assign specific points of damage, when you use numbers you must USE numbers.
But are you going to lightly punch each of them hoping that they'll just fall down long enough for a meteor to come out of the sky and finish them off, or are you going to focus on one of them until they are down and then turn to the next one?

That's how I think about it in terms of flavor.

You know if I've got a guy behind me organizing the battle who can throw fire, lighting and burning rocks from the sky (to say nothing of pulling me out of harms way) then yes I would if my boss behind me told me to just wear them down a bit so he can pick them off. In fact I would MUCH prefer to just try and hold them off for a little bit and keep them off balance for my boss to finish off than risk myself going by all out toe to toe trying to kill them.

Its not like any creature summoned in magic just accidentally blundered into one of Elspeth's soldier's or Garruk's beasts. All creature's summoned are implied to be under the Planewalker's mystical control or at the very least taking direction from the walker unless they are something like a crazy red psycho who attack's non-stop 'cause they are pretty much uncontrolable.
This is how I read the combat changes.


We got tired of good players taking advantage of scrubs because good players played all of their effects after saying "combat damage on the stack?" and bad players played all of their effects before that. Thus we have decided ALL players must do it before so that bad players have a chance. Oh and by the way because we did this, we decided to screw up the way you can deal damage, so that the good players who understand how to use pyroclasm like spells cannot gain the full effect of them because they have to apply damage like all the bad players do now also.

If there are two strategic choices (play an ability before combat damage or after it's on the stack) and one of them is almost always right and one is almost always wrong, then the only deciding factor between good players and bad players is whether they know the trick or not. 99% of the time you want to stack combat damage first and then sacrifice your Mogg. Bad player instantly becomes good player simply by knowing a cool bit of juggling.

On the other hand, what if you have two strategic choices, and one is right about 60% of the time and the other is right about 40% of the time. The deciding factor between good and bad players now relies on reading the board, guessing what your opponent might do, and picking the option that best supports your strategy. There is no special trick that will always work. Bad player must work hard to become good player through real understanding of the game position, hidden information and all.

If something as simple as understanding combat damage on the stack was the only thing separating good players from bad players, then it deserved to go. Prove that you're a good player by figuring out the best Mogg Fanatic plays now. No fancy damage-stack will save you now.
The World of Eldangard - a three act M:tG block by Fallingman Eldangard Stormfront Ragnarok
But are you going to lightly punch each of them hoping that they'll just fall down long enough for a meteor to come out of the sky and finish them off, or are you going to focus on one of them until they are down and then turn to the next one?

That's how I think about it in terms of flavor.

Flavor is a poor excuse for implementing this rule. If flavor is suddenly so important then please explain to me how an 8/8 monstrosity can get blocked by a wee little 0/1 bird fluttering around the jungle? If that can happen, then I honestly don't see the problem with an attacker wounding two guys instead of killing one of them.

And as I've, jokingly, said in another thread: combat damage using the stack can just as easily be explained by using 'teh flavah':

Take Mogg Fanatic, for instance. It's fighting a Llanowar Elf. The fight is over, and they're both dying from their wounds (damage on the stack). Then the Mogg lights the fuse on his powder keg. It dies, the Llanowar Elf dies and the creature caught in the blast is wounded (damage resolves).

Same with, say, Goblin Bombardment. Why can't they catapult a dying Goblin?

That's how I view it in terms of flavor.
Just return all back. Players. Dont. Need. This. Changes(Removing Combat Damage Stack).
Dixi.
All other changes are OK (exile, manaburn and ALL other)
Just keep the combat plase like it was been. Sorry for bad english
I could not possibly care less about flavor. I want my strategy game to be a strategy game and I want my strategy game to be complex. I want the rules to be consistent even if that makes them harder to understand for new players. I want greater complexity and depth of strategy, not less. I want damage-on-the-stack back.
That is not correct.

Damage is dealt when an object on the stack resolves. That object might be the Combat Damage Object (which holds the information about the assignment of combat damage), a spell such as Lightning Bolt or an ability such as Pandemonium's.

In all cases there is an object on the stack that, when it resolves, deals damage. While the object is on the stack, players may play spells and abilities to modify the damage.

In a month, combat damage becomes a special class of damage that cannot be responded to. It is assigned, then it happens. This has never, ever, been true before.

It's true that before April 1999 you couldn't respond to the assignment of combat damage, but you could still play damage-prevention spells and abilities after damage had been assigned and before your damaged creature died.

Now? You can't.

See, I think you just clearly illustrated my point. Damage is never it's own object, except in the case of combat, where multiple sources get lumped into one object. This is different from everything else in the game, right?

And since April '99, you can't respond to damage itself (as you pointed out), prevention effects have to be used before the damage happens (you know, to prevent it), like any other situation. You get to see which creatures are blocking which. You also get to see in what order the attacker intends to eliminate the creatures. And you get to respond by choosing creatures as targets for your damage prevention effects.
Flavor is a poor excuse for implementing this rule.

And a poor argument for leaving it the way it was. I wish people would just forget about the flavor aspect, it's a silly discussion.
The World of Eldangard - a three act M:tG block by Fallingman Eldangard Stormfront Ragnarok
But are you going to lightly punch each of them hoping that they'll just fall down long enough for a meteor to come out of the sky and finish them off, or are you going to focus on one of them until they are down and then turn to the next one?

That's how I think about it in terms of flavor.

Iif I was the creature, and I was told by my master to do exactly that (which I believe he totally can) I would not have a problem doing that. I was summoned by him and exist for him. Or else why would I even fight some random creatures after being summoned by a stranger.

On a side note, do you notice that most of the people who agrees with the change have a join date of Jun 2009? Coincidence? Trolls?
But are you going to lightly punch each of them hoping that they'll just fall down long enough for a meteor to come out of the sky and finish them off, or are you going to focus on one of them until they are down and then turn to the next one?

That's how I think about it in terms of flavor.

Flavor wise, this is somewhat still off.

As the planeswalker who summoned my creature (and mechanically speaking) I have dominance of will and thought over that creature, therefore, even if the creature didn't understand why I was having him "lightly punch each of them", it would know enough that I had a plan. (I may have that pyroclasm or fallout ready.)

Also, if I willed my 3/3 with Lure into doing said light punches against 3 other "lured" 3/3's, I don't think my creature will care whether or not it was able to kill one of them, because when it comes down to it, my 3/3 is going to die in the end regardless. It knows I sent into the fray with that same information, and even if I couldn't control its every move, I would hope, since I had the faith to summon it in the first place (I mean come on, I can make mogg fanatics commit suicide at whim!) it would follow through with my plan for setting up a mass removal effect (hopefully assuming my opponent doesn't have an answer, hence the strategy and luck of the game).
I thought it might be appropriate to provide a link to the Wizards response to the 6th Edition rules changes, back in 1999:

http://www.wizards.com/magic/advanced/6e/6E_Letter.asp

I would like to quote an important piece of this response:

We made a bigger change to the way creatures deal their combat damage. This change was made so that combat damage fit into the Grand Unified Timing System. We wanted to allow players to prevent damage after they saw how creature damage was being divided (which is what happens under Fifth Edition rules). We also wanted for spells played during combat to work the same way they do outside of combat. In the end we created a system that has simpler rules but much more complex play strategies.

What I gather from this is that, having a system where you can respond to combat damage on the stack provides for more complex play strategies.
And a poor argument for leaving it the way it was. I wish people would just forget about the flavor aspect, it's a silly discussion.

Then WotC shouldn't have brought it up. They should've just been honest and said: "Sorry guys, with the dumbing down of the public school system new players just aren't getting it. We're gonna have to follow suit."
Many players are complaining about things that they can no longer do with the new M10 combat rule changes. Some of the complaints is about the 2 for 1 possiblities when combat damage uses the stack. The classic examples are the Mogg Fanatic killing 2-toughness creatures in combat and the Sakura Tribe-Elder killing a 1-toughness creature and then saccing for a land. Now players have to choose where their 1 damage from Fanatic goes and whether they want to kill a 1-toughness creature or get a land. The new combat rules at least make these situations more interesting because players are faced with a choice and that choice will be different depending on the circumstance.

Another example is the splitting damage amongst multiple blockers and then Pyroclasm to finish off those blockers. Personally, I do not recall such a situation happening in the games that I have played. Perhaps, I am just unlucky in that this did not occur in any of my games. When I use Pyroclasm, I usually use it when my opponent has 2-toughness creatures or follow it up with some other damage afterwards.

When I look back at the games that I played, I really cannot say that any significant portion of those creature combats would have been any different under the new rules. The only exception is the 2-for-1 effects I mentioned above. Most of the time, you chump block and lose the blocker or you gang block and kill the attacker while losing at least one blocker. In the end, if you gang block, you will have dead blockers or only 1 blocker who has any damage on it. Any other surviving blockers will have no damage. I'm referring to 1 attacker only in this example. Under old or new rules, the outcomes will likely be the same.

Combat tricks can still be played after the declare blockers step. Usually this is when you would play things like Giant Growth or Incinerate to pump up or kill creatures to give you the most advantageous outcome. This is done before as well. Regeneration abilities that used to be played when damage is on the stack can be played after declaring blockers. If you decide to block with a regenerator, you regenerate before damage and the outcome is the same.

The most significant change I can see occurring in the games that I played is the 2-for-1 effects after damage is on the stack. Other creature combat situations will most likely remain the same. I feel that the loss of the 2-for-1 effects is actually an improvement. The reason is that in the past, once you knew how to take advantage of the stack, there really is no decision in those situations. Any alternative to saccing Sakura while damage is on the stack and getting a basic land is far inferior and thus isn't really a choice at all. With M10, you have to choose whether you want the land or want to deal the damage. It also presents an interesting choice if Sakura attacks you and you have a 1-toughness creature. Do you want to risk losing your 1-toughness creature and force your opponent into that choice with Sakura?

Individual cards will become better or worse with the M10 rule changes. I, like many others, do not like it when cards that I like become worse. However, looking at the overall effect on the game as a whole, I do see some positives that can potentially make the game more interesting to play.
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