|QT Tokyo in London, Ontario
Duncan McGregor - Level 2
PTQ Tokyo - held in London, Ontario, Canada
Attendence: 55 players
Judging Staff: Chris Page - Level 3 (Head Judge); Duncan McGregor - Level 2; Andrew Culver - Level 1; Marvin Paguirigan - Level 1 (T.O.)
Last Sunday, I judged at an Extended PTQ in London. This is the first time
I had judged Extended since the beginning of the year, as I mainly judge at larger events (PTQs, Prereleases, Regionals). While 6th Edition rules have smoothed out many of the rules problems we used to get, the wide variety of cards available almost guarantees a large number of rules questions during the day.
As registration proceeded, the decklists would be collected and brought back to the judges area, where either Chris or I would briefly examine each to check for legality. This is something that I would recommend doing anytime you have the judge personnel needed to do it. Usually we don't fully check the decklists, as this would take too much time; however, a quick count-to-60 and count-to-15, and keeping your eye out for banned cards, will head off a few problems before they become game losses. If you want to do this at your tournaments, however, don't advertise that you are doing it to the players. You don't want them to regard you as a safety net, or think that this means you won't hand out penalties if errors are made and not discovered in time. Also, if a large influx of people near the end of
registration means you don't have time to check all of the decklists, you
won't want the owners of those decks to be annoyed with you for not having time to complete this. We asked 2 players to correct their decklists to make them legal, and told them to be more careful in the future.
We were able to start the tournament right on time. After opening announcements were made, the players settled in for round 1.
In round 1 we will usually refrain from
performing deckchecks, leaving this until round 2. This is because we tend
to get more rules questions in round 1 than in any other round, so we want
to have our judges available to deal with situations as they come up,
instead of at a table away from the players. Also there is the fact that we
will be deckchecking players who have not had a chance to play yet, instead
of in later rounds when we will be checking players who we know are being
successful. However, this is balanced out by the fact that, if the players
know about this, less scrupulous ones might take the opportunity to try and
cheat in round 1, knowing that they will not be deckchecked. So far this
has not seemed to be a major concern.
Questions\Rulings from round 1:
- Abeyance will not counter a spell if cast in response to it. The player
it is cast on will be unable to declare any additional instants, sorceries etc. after it resolves, but can respond to it normally, and any spells placed on the stack before it is declared will resolve normally.
- Urza's Rage cannot be cast on a player who has an Ivory Mask in play, as
that player is not a legal target.
- If a player has both Sylvan Library and Abundance in play, that player can replace all 3 draws (1 normal, 2 from Sylvan) with the Abundance ability and end up with 3 more cards in hand than he had before without having to pay life. Also, that player does not have to declare what type of card he is going to get (land or not land) until he is just about to get that card; this means he does not have to say, for example, "Land, Not, Not" before
finding out what the first card is.
- If a creature comes into play when a Pandemonium is in play, and then that creature is Humbled in response to the Pandemonium ability, it will deal 0 damage to the chosen target on resolution of the Pandemonium. This
is because the Pandemonium doesn't lock the amount of damage in on announcement, but checks on resolution. However, if the creature is no longer in play on resolution, the Last Known Characteristics rule (402.6)
will mean that the Pandemonium ability will deal damage equal to the power
of the creature when it left play.
- If a River Boa attacks a player who controls a Tundra, it cannot be
blocked as the Tundra counts as an Island.
- It is not necessary to name the card you want to get with a Demonic
Consultation when you announce the spell. The only choices you have to make on announcement are targets, modes if the spell is modal, how the spell will affect targets if the spell affects different targets differently, and division of an effect if such a choice is needed, like how much damage
Volcanic Winds does to each target. Since the naming of a card for Demonic
Consultation does not fall into any of these categories, this choice is not
made until resolution.
- If a player goes to resolve an Oath of Druids effect and has no creatures
left in his deck, he does not die, although his entire remaining library
will end up in his graveyard. You do not die due to having no cards in your
library unless you try to draw a card with your library empty. This means
that there is time for a Gaea's Blessing to trigger and put cards back into the library if one is revealed with the Oath before the player has to draw a card during his Draw Step.
- A player with two Sylvan Libraries in play was looking at the top five cards of his library and choosing one of those to keep. This was ruled to fall under Misrepresentation, and the player was given a warning and told how multiple Sylvans interact (not very well).
Like I said, a lot of rules questions get asked during round 1.
Questions\Rulings from round 2:
- One of the players who was deckchecked this round had very beaten-up sleeves, and was asked to resleeve. However, the extra time granted to help
him to this ended up getting used, as the games that he and his opponent
played this round took the full time granted. This means that the entire
tournament was held up for 10 minutes due to this player having to resleeve.
I would suggest that, unless the cards seem to be marked in a pattern, resleeve requests be made for the beginning of the next round, so that the
players will have until the next round begins to resleeve. The player can
then use the period inbetween rounds to resleeve, and possibly get friends to help. An alternate suggestion, if judges can be spared, is to have a judge help with desleeving and resleeving.
- An incident occured where two players (A and B) asked for a ruling just after A had resolved an effect that would cause him to draw three cards. After the ruling was issued and the judge had left the table, B said something to A, and then A went to begin drawing the cards, even though he had already drawn them before the ruling. He drew the first card before B stopped him from drawing more. The problem with this case is that the players disagreed as to what B said to A when they resumed their game. B claimed that he just said 'Go ahead', while A claimed that B said 'Draw your three cards'. Both players were able to confirm that the card A had drawn after the ruling had been placed back on top of A's library. We tried to find out if any spectators had been watching the game, as there were several in the area, but none had been paying attention. In the
end the ruling was that each player would receive a warning for this and the
card on top of A's library would be shown to B as well. Neither player
seemed very happy with this, but without a way to determine who was lying, we did not feel that additional penalties were required for either player.
- Under 6th Edition rules, if a creature with Trample is blocked by
multiple blockers, lethal damage must be assigned to each blocker before any
can be assigned to the defending player.
- A player had placed his Necropotence on top of his library to remind him not to draw a card. He was informed that this is not allowed under DCI rules.
Questions\Rulings from round 3:
- A player (C) declared that he was going to Force of Will his opponent's
(D's) spell, but did not immediately pay mana, or discard a card and pay one
life. D put his spell into the graveyard, then watched C tap mana for the Force. I was then asked what should be done if an opponent declared a spell without paying costs. My answer was that the spell is not successfully declared until all costs have been paid, so in this case D should have just asked C to pay the costs for the spell before proceeding.
- When declaring a Mox Diamond, the land is discarded on announcement.
- A player who had Sylvan Libraries in his deck looked at the top three cards of his deck when he did not, in fact, have a Sylvan Library in play. His opponent was able to confirm that the cards were put back on top of the library in the correct order. That player was given a warning and drew his
normal card, and his opponent was shown the two cards looked at that were still on top of the library.
Questions\Rulings from round 4:
- A player, while shuffling his opponent's deck, accidentally dropped a
Mountain onto the floor. I gave him a warning and showed his opponent a random card from his deck.
- If a player has a City of Traitors in play, it is legal to drop another land, then cast Frantic Search in response to the City's sacrifice effect. The City will still be in play, so the player can untap it as part of the resolution of the Frantic Search, then tap it again for mana before it is sacrificed. The player who did this had actually checked the legality of
this with us before the tournament started, something I would recommend all
players do if they are not sure whether or not something is legal, or if the
player is unsure that the judge knows the correct ruling. This will make sure that the player and the judges are in agreement before it becomes an issue.
- It is legal to Mana Leak a spell, wait for the opponent to pay the Mana
Leak, and then Mana Leak again.
Questions\Rulings from round 5:
- A deckcheck revealed one of the problems that our quick decklist checks
before the tourney will not catch. A player had registered '4 Wildfire' twice on his decklist, instead of '4 Wildfire' and '4 Voltaic Key'. That
player was given a game loss. His decklist was amended to remove the second instance of '4 Wildfire' and add basic land to make a legal deck (1 Mountain in this case; the decklist was 63 cards). His deck was changed to conform to the new decklist. Finally, he and his opponent were both told to begin playing without sideboarding for the first game that was actually to be
Questions\Rulings from round 6:
- A creature that has summoning sickness can be tapped to pay for a
Tradewind Rider's ability. Of course, a Tradewind Rider with summoning
sickness still cannot tap as activation for it's own activity.
- I was watching a game where a player (E) who had Necropotence in play
untapped, then reached for his library to draw a card. I reached out and
said, 'Wait!' E paused, then realized what he had been about to do and drew
back. His opponent looked mildly disappointed but was smart enough not to
push the issue.
The Top 8 playoffs proceeded well. No major rules issues popped up, and the
only case where judge intervention was required was in one of the semifinal
matches. The first game finished having taken 40 of the 90 minutes allowed, as both players were playing very deliberately, and with PandeBurst playing off against Tradewind-Survival, a lot of shuffling was taking place as well. From then on I kept a close eye on the clock, reminding the players of the three-minute time limit between games, and had to ask each player once to try to maintain a reasonable rate of play. The second game took 30 minutes,
and the third would have finished within the time limit even had one player not conceded when he was not yet dead but could see that he would lose the game eventually.
The finals opponents decided to split, allowing everyone to leave the tourney site at a reasonable hour. Congratulations to Elijah Pollock for
winning the invite to Tokyo, and to his opponent in the finals, Nick Chen.
-- Duncan McGregor
Level 2 Judge