Respect the Authority

Alex is playing against Nate at a Standard PPTQ. Alex controls a Heart of Kiran and two Thraben Inspectors. Alex casts Thalia, Heretic Cathar and it resolves. Alex crews his Heart of Kiran with Thalia and attacks with all of his creatures. Before blocks, Nate activates his Whirler Virtuoso, and puts a Thopter into play. Alex, not wanting Heart of Kiran to be blocked, destroys it with Unlicensed Disintegration. After taking 3 from the kill spell to 10, Nate makes another Thopter with Whirler Virtuoso and says “ok, go to blocks?” Alex agrees, Nate blocks one Inspector with Whirler Virtuoso, and the Heart of Kiran with the remaining Thopter. Both players record life totals, with Nate at 9. A spectator then points out that the tokens should have entered the battlefield tapped, and couldn’t block. Both players agree that the tokens were put into play untapped, Alex even adding “I definitely wouldn’t have killed the token if I knew it couldn’t block.”

What do you do?

Judges feel free to answer this on Judge Apps!


Nate receives a Warning for a Game Rules Violation. He should have put his tokens into play tapped. Alex receives a warning for Failure to Maintain Game state, while he controls Thalia, it was only passively involved in the error, so this is not a double GRV situation. Back the game up to when the second token was created. We eliminate the block, while not giving either player any additional information. While some errors that occurred are maintained, the disruption of the rewind is minimal, and the main disruption of the error, the block that shouldn’t have happened, is removed. Note that we usually can’t back-up part way, but because two errors happened it is possible here. Complete the back-up by undoing combat damage (Nate goes back to 10), returning the token and Thraben Inspector to the battlefield. Then undo blocks, and tap the token. Let both players know they will both get priority in the declare attackers step before blockers.