It’s a conspiracy (week)! Every Vote Counts, So Count Every Vote

To wrap up this week’s Conspiracy theme, we’ll touch on one of the most multiplayer mechanics in the whole set- Voting! There’s multiple cards in the set that have the ability word “Will of the Council”. Just like other ability words (such as Hellbent, Landfall, Morbid, Heroic, etc), Will of the Council is in italics on the card- just like reminder text and flavor text! Why is that, you may wonder? Because italic text has no rules meaning. Ability words have zero rules meaning, at all- they only exist to lump thematically similar abilities together. For instance, all the Landfall abilities care, in some way, about a land hitting your side of the board, but they vary wildly beyond that. Morbid abilities all care about a creature having died, but vary wildly. Similarly, Will of the Council abilities all revolve around a central linking thing- voting.

Each Will of the Council card (such as Magister of Worth) will ask all players to cast a vote, and list options available. Each player in turn order casts their vote for one of those options, and then something happens depending on how the ballot adds up. For example, Magister and friends give two options- everyone selects one (knowing fully what each player before them chose, but NOT knowing what the later players will choose), and then one of two things happens. For Magister, each player votes for Grace or Condemnation. If Grace wins the vote, all creature cards in all graveyards come back! Meanwhile, if Condemnation wins (or the vote is tied!), everything but Magister gets nuked. This is how it’ll work with the either-or cards: one of the two HAS to happen, so there’s a sort of ‘default’ in case of ties. As you may imagine, in most 2 player games (remember, the non-Conspiracy cards ARE Legacy legal!) the tie is what’ll happen most often, probably.

There’s a few others where the choice isn’t binary, such as Council Guardian. The vote still goes the same- Active Player (the player whose turn it is) casts their vote, then the other players vote in turn order. The difference is that there’s more than two options! You still only go with the ‘winner’ though (or the winners PLURAL in case of a tie- this means that a Council Guardian could end up with protection from two, three- even all five colors).

There’s also one card that can mess with the voting process- Brago’s Representative. With Brago’s boy on your side, you get an extra vote any time votes happen (meaning you get 2 votes for your OPPONENT’S Wills too!). You don’t need to cast both votes for the same thing, but it’s usually a good idea to do that.

So, what exactly COUNTS for a vote? For example, can you use Brago’s Representative to keep 4 of your permanents as a Razia’s Purification resolves? Can you get two modes out of your Charms, or three out of your Commands? The easy answer is no- you have to actually be VOTING. It has to explicitly refer to ‘voting’, which currently only the Will cards do. Brago’s Representative won’t lobby for your ‘choose one’ effects, only your votes!

And with that, we’re done with Conspiracy (for now, at least! Who knows what the future may bring?). Next week we’ll start doing your regular everyday Rules Tips again- and we’ve got Magic 2015 coming out in just a few weeks, so hopefully we’ll have some tips on those new cards and returning mechanics soon enough!

Today’s Conspiracy Tip written by Trevor Nunez

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