Magic Judge Monthly July 2018

Welcome to your Core issue of Magic Judge Monthly!

This month, we bring you news and policy changes with Core 2019, along with some conference updates.  As many of you know, we’re hoping to beat the heat in these months, so hopefully the Modern PPTQ season will keep things exciting as we start our path away from the times of Nicol Bolas, and move towards Ravnica!

Enough judge questions in every language for tests!

Level One Practice and Level One Advancements now have at least two versions in many different languages.  Level Two tests are being worked on and should be functional soon. For details on languages and to see the amazing crew who worked on this project, check out this link.

L2 Tester changes

The certification for Level 2 Tester has been removed, but an alternative has been put into action.  For more details and an explanation, follow this link.

L2 Team Lead in Training Program

There have been a handful of changes to the Team Lead process.  The certification was, in many Judge’s eyes, not doing what it was designed to achieve.  It has been completely overhauled. If you’re using this checkbox to fulfill your Level 3 requirements, don’t worry, you have until the end of 2019 to use it.  After that, you will need to complete this new formula.

State of the Judge program from the Program Coordinators

A gathering of Regional Coordinators, an upcoming Q&A with the Program Coordinators, and messages from Sphere leaders.  This article contains a bounty of information about where the program was, is, and what it has planned for the future.


Judge Articles and Blog Posts from July 2018

  1. Translated Rules: Commander (2018 Edition) Release Notes
  2. Judge cast: JudgeCast #204 – Magic 2019 Core Set, JudgeCast #205 – Reviewing “Up” and M19 Policy Updates
  3. JudgeApps Help and Updates
  4. Travel Guides: GP Turin 2018
  5. Regional Blogs:
    New articles in:
    Europe East
    Juízes de Magic Brasil
    German Speaking Countries
    Judging in Russian
    Magic Judge Iberia – Español
    Jueces Hispanoamericanos
    USA – Southeast Regional Blog
    Canadian Judge Family

    The Judges of Southeast Asia

    USA Great Lakes Judges

More judge blogs can be found at the Judge Blog Portal.

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

Do you need a quick rules or policy answer? Ask a Magic Judge!

Judge Anniversaries

Congratulations to all of the judges who celebrated an anniversary in July 2018, including Keith Boyle, Salvatore La Terra, Rob McKenzie, and Scott Marshall!

Judge of the Week — July 2018

264:John Reuben Ferrer, L2 from Marikina, Phillipines
265:Zohar Finkel, L2 from Rehovot, Israel
266:Patrick Surab, L2 from Bratislava, Slovakia
267:Ralph Glatsch, L2 from Hamburg, Germany

A big welcome to the following judges who worked their first GP in July 2018!

GP Sao Paolo
GP Sacramento
GP Chiba
GP Minneapolis
GP Turin

Update to Conference Support:

This month brings us an update to what judges will receive as support for attending judge conferences.

M19 notes for the Win!

Questions about the new cards in M19? Take a look at this helpful article in For the Win.

Creating Spaces

This month brought us a great article on how to deal with the challenges that dyslexia brings some of us.

Learning Sphere

After nine long months, we now have new scenarios in the Card Counting Challenge!

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

1. AP activates a +2 ability of a planeswalker while controlling both Pir, Imaginative Rascal and Doubling Season. How many counters are put onto the planeswalker?

A: “614.16 is the rule that applies (specifically, the last sentence). Normally, Doubling Season cannot apply to a cost, since a cost is not an effect. But if another replacement effect (like Pir’s ability) applies, Doubling Season can now apply to that event and can double the counters. In the stated case, the planeswalker would end up gaining six loyalty counters (the ability would add 2, Pir adds one, then Doubling Season gets to apply and it ends up gaining six counters).”

Approved by Nathan Long
Cards: Pir, Imaginative Rascal; Doubling Season

2. NAP has 44 cards in their library and 21 life. AP attacks with Ulamog, the Ceaseless Hunger and announce his trigger. NAP grabs 20 cards from the top of their library and browse at them. After seeing their 4 Paths to Exile in those cards and before revealing to exile, NAP concedes the game and shuffle the cards back in their library. Is NAP committing any infraction for not showing the cards to AP?

A: NAP hasn’t committed any infraction. “Players can concede at anytime, regardless of game mechanics. As soon as they do, the game is over and any potential access to information is lost. It does not matter that technically that information was owed, match moved on and so should we.”

Approved by Scott Marshall
Cards: Ulamog, the Ceaseless Hunger; Path to Exile

3. AP casts Search for Tomorrow, says “I'll get a forest”, NAP lets it resolve and then AP searches up a Mountain to cast a Lightning Bolt. Isn’t AP obliged to adhere to the choice made while casting that spell, since there was no response from NAP?

A: “The specific land the player intends to get is not something that has to be announced – technically, that rules text says “search for a card with the quality ‘Basic Land’”; it does NOT say “name a Basic Land, then search for that land”. So they can cast Search for Tomorrow, Rampant Growth, or even Farseek, say “I’m gonna get a Wastes” – and then proceed to resolve the spell correctly. (Again, if they actually resolve it incorrectly, that’s an infraction – not the “bluff” that precedes the infraction.)”

Approved by Scott Marshall

Cards: Search for Tomorrow; Lightning Bolt; Rampant Growth; Farseek

4. NAP controls Leovold, Emissary of Trest and AP casts Collective Brutality choosing the first and third modes. How many times does Leovold triggers?

A: “Leovold only triggers once in this case. While the Brutality is targeting NAP twice, NAP is only becoming the target of the Brutality once, so Leovold triggers once, not once for each time NAP is targeted by the spell. It’s covered by this rule:

‘603.2d Some trigger events use the word “becomes” (for example, “becomes attached” or “becomes blocked”). These trigger only at the time the named event happens—they don’t trigger if that state already exists or retrigger if it persists. An ability that triggers when a permanent “becomes tapped” or “becomes untapped” doesn’t trigger if the permanent enters the battlefield in that state.’”

Approved by Nathan Long

Cards: Leovold, Emissary of Trest, Collective Brutality

5. During a Competitive REL event, I walk by a table and I hear a player saying to his opponent: “This could have been a warning, you know?”. What shall I do?

A: “From the IPG:‘If a minor violation is quickly handled by the players to their mutual satisfaction, a judge does not need to intervene.’ While the bit of conversation you overheard sounds a bit odd, it’s most likely something minor; things that aren’t minor tend to be reported, even between friends.”

Approved by Scott Marshall.

Fall 2018 Program Coordinator Application open!

Applications are now being accepted for another Program Coordinator slot, with an 18 month term starting on October 1st, 2018. The Program Coordinators are also looking for Level 3 judges who want to join the selection committee. Check out the relevant blog post and get more information about the description of the Program Coordinator role, as well as how to join and contribute to the selection committee.

Announcing the Grand Prix Head Judge Summer 2018 class!

Read this announcement to see which Grand Prix Head Judges have successfully renewed their tenure, and also who the new judges that have been granted the Grand Prix Head Judge role are.

Release notes for M19 Core Set

As we’ve just had another amazing core set after years of hiatus, here are the release notes for your rules questions!

Policy Changes for M19

We have a small update this time around; feel free to have a read not only through the updates but also through the useful guidance which has been added as a bonus feature.

Judging For the Win: M19 New Set Digest

Whenever a new set comes out, there’s always rules, policy, and lots of other changes to go with it. If trying to keep up with everything is giving you a headache, this article has everything relating to M19 that you’ll need all in one place.

M19 Two-Headed Giant Hidden Gems

We would like to bring to your attention  a very handy article on the 2HG Hidden Gems that highlights which new cards to look out for within the M19 format.

Find out which Judge Conferences, Grand Prix and SCG Opens have available worldwide staffing positions! You still have some time to apply for SCG Open Syracuse and SCG Open Baltimore, as well as GP Atlanta, GP Melbourne, GP Milwaukee, GP Warsaw and GP Shizuoka.

Check out the Grand Prix Solicitations and Select Staffs for more details on individual tournaments and to know if there are some last minute solicitations you can apply to!

Public Projects such as Magic Judges on Twitter and Articles Update are looking for awesome judges who can help! If you wish to get more out of your Judging experience and give back to the community, sign up for something that interests you!


Sugar on Top!

The ‘un-official’ Judge Tokens project brings you another set of awesome tokens, designed by Zie Aun Tan for the new-ish project!  Don’t forget to check their forum post, and you can order these tokens in the next wave (as this one closed July 13th!)