Prerelease Week: Returning mechanics – Fight

Though the official tournament rules prevent fighting, some cards require fighting. Oh, that’s right, they call for two creatures to fight, it is all returning to me now. That is a great coincidence because the Fight mechanic is returning in M15!

Fight is a mechanic that is surprisingly simple. When a card calls for one creature to fight another, they merely deal damage equal to their power to one another. Now, there are some intricacies about fight. The first is that the creatures are dealing the damage, not the card that made the fight occur. This means that abilities such as lifelink and deathtouch will take effect.

First strike doesn’t matter, flying doesn’t matter. The fight just happens. This isn’t combat damage, so abilities that matter only for combat don’t have any bearing on the fight, and abilities that trigger from attacking (Preeminent Captain) or blocking (Netcaster Spider) won’t trigger. Abilities that trigger from any kind of damage will trigger, however (Hot Soup, Hornet Nest).

Another important thing about fight is that it requires both “fighters” to be legal targets in order for the fight to actually occur. For example, if you cast Hunt the Weak targeting your 3/3 Beast token and your opponent’s 3/3 Beast token, but your opponent casts Ranger’s Guile in response to give their Beast hexproof, your spell will have only one legal target. This means it does resolve, but it only does as much as it can. In this case, that means adding a +1/+1 counter to your Beast, but since it can’t make the opponent’s illegal-target-Beast do anything, no fight occurs.

Now all I have to work on is remembering the difference between a creature and player. I don’t want to have any issues casting Murder.

Today’s Rules Tip written by James Arriola

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