Double Strike question

31 posts / 0 new
Last post
This may be silly, but my friends and I can never agree on how we think double strike works. We know that double strikers attack in both first strike and normal combat steps, but the question is always how this affects the defending player.

For example, I attack with Kinsbaile Cavalier, and the defending player blocks with a 1/1 creature. Would the Cavalier kill the blocker, then deal another 2 damage to the defending player? Or would the blocker die and end combat there?

Also, let's repeat the situation, but say that the defending player does not block the Cavalier. Will it deal it's damage twice, reducing their life by 4?

IMAGE(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v346/Parsath/RedSK.png)

A Creature with Double strike will assign (NOT 'attack') Combat Damage in each Combat Damage step, following the Rules for assigning Combat Damage.
Show
310.2a Each attacking creature and each blocking creature will assign combat damage equal to its power. Creatures that would assign 0 or less damage this way don't assign combat damage at all.

310.2b An unblocked attacking creature that's attacking a player will assign all its combat damage to the defending player. An unblocked attacking creature that's attacking a planeswalker will assign all its combat damage to the planeswalker it's attacking. If the creature isn't currently attacking anything (if, for example, it was attacking a planeswalker that has left play), it will assign no combat damage.

310.2c A blocked creature will assign combat damage, divided as its controller chooses, to the creatures blocking it. If no creatures are currently blocking it (if, for example, they were destroyed or removed from combat), it will assign no combat damage.

310.2d A blocking creature will assign combat damage, divided as its controller chooses, to the attacking creatures it's blocking. If it isn't currently blocking any creatures (if, for example, they were destroyed or removed from combat), it will assign no combat damage.
The Cavalier will not assign any Combat Damage in the second Combat Damage step.

It'll assign/deal its Combat Damage to the Defending player twice, once in each Combat Damage step.
Oh, I must have misread or overlooked that when I looked up double strike in the rules. And you're right, 'attack' was the wrong word choice.

Thank you for your answer though, that does clear it up a lot.

IMAGE(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v346/Parsath/RedSK.png)

I think the Cavalier would deal the remaining 2 damage to the defending player. This is because the Cavalier has double strike, so if blocked by a 1/1, during the first combat phase the Cavalier would kill the 1/1, then in the second combat phase the Cavalier would deal it's 2 damage to the defending player.
I think the Cavalier would deal the remaining 2 damage to the defending player. This is because the Cavalier has double strike, so if blocked by a 1/1, during the first combat phase the Cavalier would kill the 1/1, then in the second combat phase the Cavalier would deal it's 2 damage to the defending player.

You are wrong. Yes, it will kill the 1/1 creature in the First Strike Combat Damage Step. However, it is still a blocked creature until combat ends. Unless it also has trample, it cannot deal damage to the defending player (or to the planeswalker it is attacking)
But reading rule 502.28b
-502.28b At the start of the combat damage step, if at least one attacking or blocking creature has double strike or first strike, creatures without double strike or first strike (see rule 502.2, "First Strike") don't assign combat damage. Instead of proceeding to end of combat, the phase gets a second combat damage step to handle the remaining creatures. In the second combat damage step, surviving attackers and blockers that didn't assign combat damage in the first step, plus any creatures with double strike, assign their combat damage.-

The last part of that is what gets me (In the second combat damage step, surviving attackers and blockers that didn't assign combat damage in the first step, plus any creatures with double strike, assign their combat damage.)
Take a look at the rules for the combat damage step:
310.2. A player may divide a creature’s combat damage as he or she chooses among the legal recipients. Dividing combat damage is subject to the following restrictions:

310.2c A blocked creature will assign combat damage, divided as its controller chooses, to the creatures blocking it. If no creatures are currently blocking it (if, for example, they were destroyed or removed from combat), it will assign no combat damage.

I read that part of the rule but still the rule on double strike itself states that In the second combat damage step, surviving attackers and blockers that didn't assign combat damage in the first step, plus any creatures with double strike, assign their combat damage.- The two rules seem to contradict each other. Just a clear example would be nice.
There is no contradiction. 502.28b (and also 310.5) describes which creatures get to assign combat damage, but does not define what it is legal to assign damage to. That is what 310.2 does. Nothing in 502.28b says that the creature with doublestrike becomes unblocked or that it can assign damage to the defending player. Only unblocked creatures (or creatures with trample) can assign damage to the defending player.
310.2b An unblocked attacking creature that’s attacking a player will assign all its combat damage to the defending player. An unblocked attacking creature that’s attacking a planeswalker will assign all its combat damage to the planeswalker it’s attacking. If the creature isn’t currently attacking anything (if, for example, it was attacking a planeswalker that has left play), it will assign no combat damage.

310.2c A blocked creature will assign combat damage, divided as its controller chooses, to the creatures blocking it. If no creatures are currently blocking it (if, for example, they were destroyed or removed from combat), it will assign no combat damage.

310.5. At the start of the combat damage step, if at least one attacking or blocking creature has first strike (see rule 502.2) or double strike (see rule 502.28), creatures without first strike or double strike don’t assign combat damage. Instead of proceeding to end of combat, the phase gets a second combat damage step (see rule 310.1) to handle the remaining creatures. In the second combat damage step, any attackers and blockers that didn’t assign combat damage in the first step, plus any creatures with double strike, assign their combat damage.

they do not contradict each other...

the first says creatures with Double Strike can assign damage in the Second Combat Damage Step and 310.2 just explains how they assign damage

to answer the OP's original question in plain English...

an unblocked creature with Double Strike will deal its Power in damage during both Combat Steps hence double damage.

a blocked creature with Double Strike will deal its Power in damage to any existing blocking creatures during the first Combat Damage Step, if that damage kills the creature in the first step, the attacking Double Striker is still blocked and must assign its damage again in the second Combat Damage Step to any blocking creatures. If there are no blocking creatures then it does not assign damage, unless it has Trample (which allows a blocked attacking creature to assign damage, over and above that required to cause lethal damage to any and all blocking creatures, to the defending player/planeswalker).

DCI Certified Judge & Goth/Industrial/EBM/Indie/Alternative/80's-Wave DJ
DJ Vortex

DCI Certified Judge since July 13, 2013
DCI #5209514320


My Wife's Makeup Artist Page <-- cool stuff - check it out

I think you are missing my question because it stands out like a sore thumb to you, but to me I'm still having a hard time seeing it. Could you please explain what that last part is supposed to mean then?

In the second combat damage step, surviving attackers and blockers that didn't assign combat damage in the first step, plus any creatures with double strike, assign their combat damage.-
Tell my mythos, does that statement that you keep bolding and underlining define where they assign their combat damage to?
Look dude I'm not trying to be rude here, just asking a question and bolding and underlining so people can understand what I am getting at, and it should be "Tell me Mythos" not "Tell my Mythos". If you can't explain it then fine, but no need to be rude.
And no it doesn't say where it should assign it because it is aimed at a defending player, a creature blocked but is now removed, a creature with double strike it says now gets to assign its combat damage, no creature in the way, the player as the intended target, hence I figure it would go to the player.
"Tell [b]me[b]Mythos" not "Tell my Mythos". If you can't explain it then fine, but no need to be rude.

Thank you for correcting me. Clearly my typo was both misleading and rude, and was undoubtedly intended to demean and belittle you.

The rule you are quoting is used to distinguish which creatures assign damage in the First Combat Damage step, and which ones assign damage in the Second Combat Damage step. It describes the set of creatures that assign their combat damage, but does not alter the way in which combat damage is assigned.
Every relevant rule has already been pointed out to you. What more do you want from us?

Read 310.2c again, then please tell me where it says that the creature with Doublestrike became unblocked.

EDIT: If you really want to insist that they are still contradictory then fine, there's still no problem. Remember that Can't ALWAYS trumps Can in Magic. Your rule says they "can" assign damage, but 310.2c says they "can't". 310.2c wins.
I'm just a Pigment of your imagination.
You just can't say sorry. Forget it, I'll ask someone who know's how to explain things. This is a board for questions and answers, not for shallow people to get kicks off of acting like knowledge gods. To the serious people who posted replys and tried to explain it, I thank you.
I did not appologize because i did not feel anything i said was rude, and thus an appology was not warrented. Looking back at my posts, the only rude comment i made was in response to your rude comment. I'm sorry i wasnt able to explain the rules to your satisfaction. Have a nice day.
Thank you, same to you.
Rule 502.28b just tells you when creatures get to assign combat damage. (Usually creatures with first strike assign their combat damage in the first combat damage step, ccreatures without first strike in the second combat damage step and creatures with double strike in both). The rule does not tell you how a creature deals its combat damage; that is what 310.2 covers. Whenever one of your creatures is to deal its combat damage you look at 310.2 to see what happens.
In your case when the Cavalier is to assign its damage in the second combat damage step this rule applies:
310.2c A blocked creature will assign combat damage, divided as its controller chooses, to the creatures blocking it. If no creatures are currently blocking it (if, for example, they were destroyed or removed from combat), it will assign no combat damage.
It does not matter what happened in the first combat damage step.
Could you please explain what that last part is supposed to mean then?

In the second combat damage step, surviving attackers and blockers that didn't assign combat damage in the first step, plus any creatures with double strike, assign their combat damage.-

let's walk through it...

the first part defines where it's applicable
ie "In the second combat damage step,"

the next phrase defines a set of creatures
ie "surviving attackers and blockers that didn't assign combat damage in the first step"

the next phrase adds more creatures to the previous set
ie "plus any creatures with double strike"

the final phrase defines what this set of creature does
ie "assign their combat damage."

so now that is the set of creatures that can assign their damage in the second combat damage step...

the other rule (310.2) is a catch-all rule that explains how all creatures assign their damage.

so Double Strike notwithstanding, a creature without first strike or double strike that did not deal damage in the first combat damage step can now assign damage (as can a creature with Double Strike) but how can they assign the damage?

are they blocked?
if no, they can assign it to the player/planeswalker they are attacking
if yes, they can assign it to the blocking creatures (if any are remaining)
note: a creature remains blocked even if he no longer has any creatures blocking it

310.2c clearly explains what happens when a blocked creature is to assign damage but it has no blocking creatures to assign it to.

example

I attack with a creature, you block it with you creature, then before damage is assigned you bounce it to your hand with unsummon. What happens?

my creature was blocked and remains blocked but has no blocking creature to assign damage to so it does not assign damage (unless it has Trample)
per 310.2c

this means if my blocked attacking creature had Lifelink, it doesn't trigger because my creature assigned no damage.

DCI Certified Judge & Goth/Industrial/EBM/Indie/Alternative/80's-Wave DJ
DJ Vortex

DCI Certified Judge since July 13, 2013
DCI #5209514320


My Wife's Makeup Artist Page <-- cool stuff - check it out

Okay, all this discussion answered just about every question I had about double strike, but it also raised a new one. Let's go back to my first example of Kinsbaile Cavalier being blocked by a 1/1, but let's also say I gave the Cavalier trample. Would he be dealing 3 damage total to the defending player?

IMAGE(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v346/Parsath/RedSK.png)

Would he be dealing 3 damage total to the defending player?

Yes, if the attacking player wants to. He also has the option to deal 2 damage to the defending player.

In the first strike damage step, the attacking player must assign lethal damage to the 1/1 blocker. The other point of damage he can either assign to the 1/1 (which might be a good idea if he expects something like Surge of Thoughtweft) or assign to the defending player. In the normal damage step, the kinsbaile cavalier will assign 2 damage to the defending player.
Okay, cool, that's good to know. Thank you very much for all the answers.

IMAGE(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v346/Parsath/RedSK.png)

May I add one question. Why is the Cavalier able to assign it's damage in the second damage step when it gains trample, if in both cases the blocking 1/1creature was removed (i.e. put into the graveyard). Is trample the only way that any creature with double strike will ever be able to use it's second attack, aside from the blocking creature surviving the initial hit?
May I add one question. Why is the Cavalier able to assign it's damage in the second damage step when it gains trample, if in both cases the blocking 1/1creature was removed (i.e. put into the graveyard). Is trample the only way that any creature with double strike will ever be able to use it's second attack, aside from the blocking creature surviving the initial hit?

You might want to read the rules for the Trample ability.

Trample specifically allows blocked creatures to assign "excess" damage to the defending player or Planeswalker. It's the whole point of Trample to be able to do that.
I'm just a Pigment of your imagination.
May I add one question. Why is the Cavalier able to assign it's damage in the second damage step when it gains trample, if in both cases the blocking 1/1creature was removed (i.e. put into the graveyard). Is trample the only way that any creature with double strike will ever be able to use it's second attack, aside from the blocking creature surviving the initial hit?

A blocked creature may not assign or deal combat damage if all blocking creatures are removed unless it has trample. If it does have trample and all blocking creatures have been removed, it must assign all of its damage to the attacked player/planeswalker.

An unblocked creature with double strike will assign damage to the attacked player/planeswalker in both the first strike combat damage step and the regular combat damage step.
So, in the case of the Cavalier, the "excess" damage would be the second attack from the double strike plus any carried over from the initial block? I guess what I am trying to ask is : What is the point of double strike if you can only use the second strike in conjunction with trample to damage the opponent or to maybe kill a creature bigger than your attacker. Is that really all it is good for?
So, in the case of the Cavalier, the "excess" damage would be the second attack from the double strike plus any carried over from the initial block? I guess what I am trying to ask is : What is the point of double strike if you can only use the second strike in conjunction with trample to damage the opponent or to maybe kill a creature bigger than your attacker. Is that really all it is good for?

If unblocked, it will do damage twice to the player. If blocked and the blocking creature removed, well that's when you need trample.
What is the point of double strike if you can only use the second strike in conjunction with trample to damage the opponent or to maybe kill a creature bigger than your attacker.

The point is: in conjunction with trample you can deal damage to the opponent, and you can kill a creature bigger than your attacker, and if your creature is unblocked, you deal double damage to the defending player.
Let Us get your question straight...
A 2/2 with Double strike and Trample is blocked by a 1/1... Correct?

If the first Combat Damage step, the Attacking Player only needs to assign the Blocking 1/1 lethal (1) damage and the remaining (1) damage to the Defending Player. But, they could have assigned all 2 damage to the Blocking 1/1.

Either way, the 1/1 will be destroyed.
Then, in the second combat Damage step, the Blocked Trampler has no Creatures Blocking it. Thus, it will assign ALL of its Combat Damage to the Defending Player.

Thus, the Defending Player would be dealt either 2 or 3 damage, depending on how the Attacking Player assigned Combat Damage in the first Combat Damage step.
I understand now how trample and double strike work, but it was rule 502.9c that made it all come together for me. I thank you for your patience and your replies.
Sign In to post comments