Magic Judge Monthly: July 2016

Greetings Judges,

Welcome to the summer edition of Magic Judge Monthly! Find out what has happened over the last month in our judging community and enjoy our selection of Q & A!

See you all next month,

The MJM team


Eldritch Moon Policy changes

Toby Elliott has posted a blog detailing the policy updates for Eldritch Moon. The patch notes are short and sweet this time. Also worth a quick read is Scott Larabee’s article with updates to the MTR.


Judge Article and Blog Posts July 2016

  1. Articles: On Demand Events: Registration… and a Few Eldrazi 🙂, Card of the Month – The Gitrog Monster, Target: No Penalties, L3 checklist changes, Policy Changes for Eldritch Moon
  2. Bearz Repeating: The Three Eyes, You Make the Ruling #4: Policy Extravaganza, Grand Prix Eggs and Ham and Find Your Training Ground
  3. Mystical Tutor: New Lessons
  4. Judge Conferences: There’s a “we” in “weapon”! – Part 1 and There’s a “we” in “weapon”! – Part 2
  5. Battlefield ForgeGP NYC ’16 – Sleuthing and Monsters!, Star City Modern IQ – I’m Not Sorry (Unless I Am), Tournament Report – WMCQ II Philippines and What is Remorse?
  6. GP Travel Guides; GP Sydney 2016, GP Guangzhou 2016, GP Lille 2016 and GP Louisville 2016
  7. Judge GamesOld McDonald had a game…. and Tools of the Trade
  8. The Feedback Loop: My First Review – Joe Wiesenberg, It’s Never Too Late to Start Again, Feedbag #4: Disagreeing Agreeably and Compassionate Coaching

In case you would like to discuss an article, visit our Judge forum. Don’t forget to regularly check our Judge blog.

Knowledge Pool July 2016

  1. Mystic Snakes on a Plane

If you would like to submit a Knowledge Pool scenario, here’s how to do it.



Happy Anniversary! July 2016

Check out the roll of July’s anniversary celebrants and see if you’ve got a dude or two to congratulate. Featured this month are Kyle Knudson (aka Ginger Overlord) and Joe Wiesenberg L3 from California, USA.

Judge of the Week July 2016

164 Kyle Knudson Level 2 from Oregon, USA

165 Benjemin Harris Level 2 from Alaska

166 Kenny Perry Level 2 from Texas, USA

167 Yuval Tzur Level 2 from Israel

Judge Survey

Mitchell Nitz wants to know how you take care of yourself during big events and wants you to answer this survey!

Motivation for L2 Advancement

Whether you’re just starting to set your sights on the path to Level 2 or are deep into the struggle of achieving the same, this thread,started by Theo Cheng back in mid-July, should prove to be nothing but useful. Read a very insightful discussion where fellows of various judging levels lend their thoughts about the question of L2 advancement under current context.



Questions asked in the month of July and an [O]fficial answer, just for you!

1. Ajani casts Threaten on Nissa's Grizzly Bears, then activates his Avarice Totem, targeting Grizzly Bears. What happens at end of turn?

A: In order for the exchange of permanents to happen, the two permanents have to be controlled by different players. If the same player controls both permanents that would be exchanged, nothing happens and no change of control effect happens. In this example, the Totem’s ability will resolve, but won’t do anything since the same player controls the Totem and the Bears. When the effect of the Treason wears off at the end of the turn, the opponent will get their Bears back. Cards used:  Grizzly Bears, Threaten, Avarice Totem

Answered by Nathan Long

2. Anastasia controls Sigarda's Aid. Can she cast Nimbus Naiad as though it had flash?

A: Yes they can, as long as they’re going to cast it via bestow. The latest update to the Comp Rules makes this clearer:

601.3b If an effect allows a player to cast a spell with certain characteristics as though it had flash, that player may consider any choices to be made during that spell’s proposal that may cause it to have those characteristics. If any such choices could cause it to match these characteristics, that player may begin to cast that spell.

Example: An effect says that you may cast Aura spells as though they had flash, and you have a creature card with bestow in your hand. Because choosing the bestow ability’s alternative cost causes that spell to become an Aura spell, you may legally begin to cast that spell as though it had flash. Cards used: Sigarda’s Aid, Nimbus Naiad

Answered by Nathan Long

3. Is Rare Redrafting allowed in sanctioned draft tournaments?

A: Yes. this has been raised before, more than once; re-drafting is a legal prize distribution; how a TO distributes their prizes is (to a degree) up to them, and judges don’t really have to worry about it.

Answered by Scott Marshall

4. A spectator is sitting next to his girlfriend after time has been called. Said girlfriend is playing vs a kid, the players are in the 2nd or 3rd extra turn. She passes the turn and the Floor Judge standing nearby hears the spectator say something like- If you attack you just win don't you?.
I thought this to be covered by the jar as a section between common issues and serious problems but it isn't. While consulting with the head judge after reading the jar again and again we decided to have a serious talk with the spectator in private and “let him get away” with a warning. Should you issue match loss for outside assistance especially at a prerelease?

A: What you did is exactly what I would do, and I think most judges would agree. The JAR doesn’t allow for a Match Loss for something like this. It is listed under General Unwanted Behaviours though, so there is the option to Game Loss if the person repeats it despite your warning chat. The IPG can help us figure out if something is undesirable, but please don’t mix the IPG with the JAR, at either REL.

Answered by Scott Marshall

5. Nissa controls Sigarda, Heron's Grace. Ashaya casts Duress, targeting Nissa, to which Nissa responds with a Negate. As the players resolve the Negate, Nissa remembers that she has Hexproof (From Sigarda) and the players call a judge. Are you giving Nissa a GRV or FtMGS here?

A: Yes. 😀

The reason we removed the strict wording about this was to get judges to stop agonizing over this dilemma. If you feel that both players were responsible for actions that were illegal, give them both a GRV.  Cards used: Sigarda, Heron’s Grace, Duress, Negate

Answered by Scott Marshall

6. During a pregame scry after a mulligan, a player's sleeves stick together, and they see the top two cards as a result. What is the appropriate infraction?

A: Two cards stuck together is still Looking at Extra Cards when it occurs during the pre-game process. The same guiding philosophy that has us treat “Scry 2 (oops, should’ve been 1 for the mulligan)” as HCE allows us to treat L@EC as L@EC.

Answered by Scott Marshall


Judge Center Exam Issues

Read up on a topic revolving around a few issues that have been identified in the DCI Judge Exam Center, along with answers provided.

Commander in Competitive REL

Is it a good idea to run a Commander tournament at Competitive REL? Take part in the discussion and have your say!

Reporting Events

If you would like to know about some useful actions that can be taken in light of a WPN Store not reporting events, then this is the place to look.

Side Events on GPTs

A very interesting discussion has sparked up with regard to whether  judges should be playing in side events while judging a GPT, alongside the accompanying matters of compensation as well as diplomacy with stores and TO’s.


Find out which Judge Conferences, Grand Prix and SCG Opens have available worldwide staffing positions! You still have time to apply for Grand Prix Warsaw and Grand Prix Rotterdam.

Check out the Grand Prix Solicitations and Selected Staffs for more details on individual tournaments.

Public projects such as Player Surveys, Mystical Tutor, MJM Translation, Judge Achievements, Flash Cards, Conference Guidelines and Policies and others are looking for help.

If you wish to get more out of your Judging experience and give back to the community, sign up to something that interests you!