The majority of cards work as you’d expect in 2HG but there are some quirks, often involving the combat phase or life total changes. Those cards are explained in these notes.
If you’re judging a 2HG prerelease I’d advice mentioning Gonti’s Machinations in your opening announcements to prevent disappointments during games. It looks like it’s extra juicy in 2HG because of the second ability but the first ability is much worse which might not be obvious.
This section covers the basics, “you” and “each”. If you’re already familiar with these you can skip to the card-specific notes.
The golden rule of 2HG is “You” still refers to you alone, not both you and your teammate. Look for the word “you” in the card text, such as “creatures you control get +1/+1”, “you get an energy counter”, etc. (There are a few specific exceptions that cannot refer to only yourself in 2HG and thus have to refer to your team. For one of those exceptions, see Exquisite Archangel below.)
The new mechanics don’t interact with your teammate:
Improvise says that “your artifacts can help” so not your teammates’.
Revolt requires “a permanent you controlled” to have left the battlefield.
Cards that say “each opponent” or “each player” do affect more players than usual.
This card will deal 4 damage in total to the opposing team. For more examples like this, see the Hidden Gems.
- This is still your permanent if you put it on your teammate’s creature, so only you can activate the ability to return it to your hand. When you do, this will give you Revolt, not your teammate.
- In 2HG you win or lose as a team, not as individual players, so this prevents your team from losing the game. This is one of the few exceptions where “you” does mean “your team”, because it cannot mean just “you”.
- This sets the team’s life total to the team’s starting life total (normally 30).
- This only counts as life gain (or loss) for you, not for your teammate.
Gonti’s Aether Heart
- In 2HG taking an extra turn means your team takes an extra turn.
- While you share a life total with your teammate, changes to that total still happen to players individually. Your teammate losing life will not trigger this.
- If a creature would deal combat damage to the defending team its controller chooses one opponent to deal that damage to. Your opponents can simply choose to have all their creatures deal combat damage to your teammate, so this will not trigger.
Hope of Ghirapur
- You attack the opponents as a team and in the Combat Damage Step you decide which opponent a creature deals its combat damage to. So your opponents won’t know yet who will be dealt the damage when they decide how to block.
- In 2HG getting an extra phase means your team gets an extra phase.
- This is still your permanent if you put it on your teammate’s land, so only you can sacrifice it to draw a card. When you do, this will give you Revolt, not your teammate.
- The mana ability is given to the land, so your teammate can tap his or her land for any color if you put this on their land.