Don’t short-sleeve yourself!

Amy has sat down to play her round 1 match at a Sealed PPTQ against Neve and the round has just begun. Amy calls for a judge because she discovered that she has an extra card in her deck. She knows she has exactly 40 sleeves, but while sleeving, she ended up with an extra card. Amy isn’t sure what the extra card is, so you quickly find her decklist and verify that she registered 41 cards in her main deck. Amy doesn’t have any extra sleeves, and its now 4 minutes into the round. What do you do to get Amy and Neve playing, and what (if any) infractions and penalties apply?
Answer
Coming Soon!
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Temple of Oops

At a Modern PPTQ you are the Head Judge of, Ashton is playing against Naomi. Ashton plays his land for turn, a Temple of Abandon. Ashton picks up the top card of his library, looks at it, sets it back down on the table. Ashton thinks, and then picks up the card and puts it into his hand. Naomi immediately calls for a judge. What do you do?
 Answer
This is a Hidden Card Error, Ashton receives a Warning. Ashton has put a card into his hand when he wasn’t supposed to, and we can’t fix it with publicly known information. Ashton reveals his hand, and Naomi chooses a card from it, since Ashton knew what the card was before he put it into his hand, we return it to the top of Ashton’s library instead of shuffling it away.
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Absento Vanguard

You are head judge of an Ixalan sealed PPTQ. At the end of round 2, a player turns in an Adanto Vanguard in a matte black sleeve that he found it on the floor. He has no idea whose it is, and there are a couple dozen players with matte black sleeves. When you announce the card has been found, nobody comes to claim it.

During round 5, you discover its owner, Peter. Peter confirms that the card is his, but he didn’t realize it was missing. That card is registered in the “played” column on Peter’s deck list. Peter is currently in game 2 of round 5 and his deck for the current game is 40 cards.

Answer

Because we are in game 2 of the match, the Adanto Vanguard is considered to be part of his sideboard along with all other cards that he opened and is not currently playing in his presented deck. This means that no penalty will be issued based on the current game.

However, we also have to contend with the issue of the previous games in which we know he was playing without Adanto Vanguard even though it was required to be there because he had marked it in his “played” column. This is resolved by looking at the language of the IPG: “the contents of the presented deck and sideboard do not match the decklist.“ Notably, this sentence doesn’t say ”did not.” A Deck Problem can only be assigned based on the currently presented deck in a currently ongoing game. Currently, there is no infraction, so we issue no infraction.

Return Peter’s Adanto Vanguard to him. Remind him to check the play area carefully when he stands up. Issue the appropriate extension, and have the players continue their match.

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Ambidecksterity

Abagail is playing in a sealed PPTQ. She sits down for game 1 of her match, grabs a pile of roughly 40 sleeved cards out of her deck box, shuffles, and presents to her opponent. Upon drawing her opening hand, she immediately calls a judge and explains that this is her sideboard. She has several other sets of cards sleeved for quick sideboarding, and she just grabbed the wrong pile from her deck box.

 

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Answer
This is Tournament Error – Deck Problem. The penalty is a Warning, as none of the upgrade paths apply. Fix the deck to match the list by having Abagail find her correct deck, and verify it matches the list. Since this error occurred during drawing of opening hands, Abagail must take a mulligan, so her new opening hand after shuffling the correct deck will be 6 cards, she may continue to mulligan from that point.

Grim Speculation

You’re the Head and only judge of a Modern PPTQ. Arielle is playing against Nice. Arielle controls a Liliana Vess and he activates Liliana’s -2 ability, searches and finds a card. She then shuffles her library and puts that card on top of it. Arielle then attacks with a Grim Haruspex, and Nick blocks with a Tarmogoyf. They go to combat damage, both creatures die, then Arielle says “draw for Haruspex” and draws a card immediately. Nice reads Grim Haruspex, points out that the card shouldn’t have been drawn, and calls a judge.

What do you do?

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Answer
Issue Arielle a Warning for Hidden Card Error. Arielle reveals her hand and Nice chooses one card from there to be put back into the top of Arielle’s library. Remind both players to read their cards carefully.

Landed in Hot Water

During a deck check in round 4 of a PPTQ, you quickly spread out the player’s deck, face down.You notice that five of the cards seem to be in sleeves that are a millimeter or two smaller than the rest. Those 5 cards are a Botanical Sanctum, an Island, an Aether Hub, a Spirebluff Canal and a Servant of the Conduit. You ask the player about his sleeving process, and he says that he sorted the deck, filled out his deck list, then shuffled his deck a bit, then sleeved. He also mentions that he had to use two packs, because the first pack didn’t have quite enough sleeves for his entire deck. You’ve ruled out any type of Cheating. What do you do?

Answer
Issue the player a Game Loss for Marked Cards. The five cards which are discernable from the rest are all blue lands or are able to produce blue mana within a turn. Knowledge of this could enable a player to gain substantial advantage, so the penalty is upgraded to a Game Loss.

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Back to the Drawing Board

With 12 minutes left in the last swiss round of a PPTQ you’re head judging, two players, Allison and Nate, call you over. They tell you that they intentionally drew their match during game 5, and didn’t know how to report it. You ask what happened, and Allison tells you,

“Well, we’re best friends, and we both make Top 8 if we draw and the match at the next table doesn’t draw. We both know this, so after we each won a game we intentionally drew the next two after about 10 turns. The next match over did finally end with a winner, so we’re drawing the match now. Nate thinks intentional draws are always supposed to be 0-0-3, but I’m confused because we played 5 games. Who’s right?”

You talk to a judge who’s playing in the event, and he says they were playing pretty quickly the whole time he watched, but then abruptly drew the game when the match next to them ended. What do you do?

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There is no infraction.
Instruct Allison that she’s right – because they each won a game before eventually drawing three games and the match, and all games that are played are expected to be reported, their match slip should list one win for each of them, and three draws, 1-1-3.

Re-Stacked and Re-Pact

Arthur and Neil are playing in a Modern PPTQ. At the end of Arthur’s turn, Neil taps out to cast Peer Through Depths. Arthur responds with Dispel. Neil responds with Pact of Negation. Arthur thinks for a moment, then casts Spell Pierce.

Neil pauses, says “Ah, nuts…” then puts his spells in his graveyard. Arthur does the same.

Neil untaps and draws for his turn.

Arthur says, “You didn’t pay for Pact.”
Neil replies, “You Spell Pierced it.”
“No, I Pierced the Peer Through Depths.”
“Judge!”

What do you do?

Answer
Since Arthur didn’t state he was targeting Peer Through Depths with Spell pierce, he is assumed to be targeting Pact of Negation as per MTR 4.2. Nothing happened that would result in a warning or back-up, educate the players about the Tournament Shortcut and the need to be clear in communicating intended game actions, and have the players continue.

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A Weak Link in the Chain?

In a Legacy GP match that you are observing, Apollo is at 3 life while playing against Neptune, who is at 5 life. Apollo casts Chain Lightning, tapping one of his two Mountains, targeting Neptune, who has several red mana available. Neptune says “it resolves” and marks herself down to 2. Apollo looks at you, waits a few seconds, then announces he’s casting a second Chain Lightning targeting Neptune. What do you do?

Answer
Apollo has committed a CPV for not confirming that Neptune was opting not to pay RR to copy Chain Lightning. Issue him a CPV-warning and back up to the point where Neptune has the option to pay RR to make a copy.

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Mutually Beneficial Assistance

Aidan is playing against Naaraa in the top 8 of a large Competitive REL tournament that has video and text coverage. Both players were given access to each other’s decklist prior to the start of the match, as they had been previously posted online. During Game 2, you turn around from watching another match and see that both players are reading their opponent’s decklist during the game. When asked, they explain that they thought this was okay, and both wanted to review what their opponent might have sideboarded. What do you do?

 

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Answer
Both Aidan and Naara have solicited and received Outside Assistance. The information they acquired was available to them between games, as the decklists were effectively part of their sideboard notes, so the downgrade clause in OA applies. Each receives a Game Loss for Outside Assistance, these game losses are not applied as they were issued at the same time. Game 2 of the match ends and is not recorded, a new Game 2 begins. Be sure to remind both players what constitutes notes, and that they should not look at their notes during a game.