The Animated Feature

Alan and Nathan are playing in a Standard GPT. Alan has a Nightveil Specter and a Mutavault in play. Alan says “Move to combat.” Nathan surveys his hand and then says, “Sure, go ahead.” Alan taps a swamp and moves his Mutavault forward, saying, “Attack with Mutavault and Specter.” Nathan says, “You can’t attack with the Mutavault,” and calls for a judge. When you arrive, both players verify what has happened. Alan states, “I was waiting to see if he wanted to cast Glimpse the Sun God. He used one on me last game.”

What do you rule? What is your fix?

Judges, feel free to discuss this scenario on Judge Apps!

Thanks for the discussion this week! A number of you correctly determined that Nathan is correct, Alan had passed the point where he could activate Mutavault before he attacked. Per the tournament shortcuts listed in MTR 4.2 (go read those now if you haven’t in the last month!!!), any statements similar to ‘ready for combat’, ‘go to attacks’, etc. are offers to give your opponent priority in the Beginning of Combat step. When Nathan responded with “Sure, go ahead” he passed priority, which moved the game into the Declare Attackers step. At this point Alan tried to activate his mutavault during the Turn-Based Action of declaring attacks.

As a Game Play Error with no more specific category to fall into, this is a GRV. Alan will receive a warning, but Nathan will not receive a warning for Failure to Maintain Game State due to catching the error in a reasonable amount of time. With your head judge’s permission the game should be rewound to the point in the game when Alan activated Mutavault, and he will continue choosing his attackers from that point.

It is worth noting that asking a few questions in this situation would not be unwarranted. This is likely just a misunderstanding of the way the game progresses by Alan, but if it turns out that he knew about the ‘declare attackers’ tournament shortcut he may be guilty of USC-Cheating.