Advice on Player and Rules

Asked by Unlife 3 months ago

I've been having issues with a player at my store and I would like some advice (and rule references if possible) for dealing with it I've been playing magic for about seven years now and I tend to play aggro decks with lots of combat tricks. I currently play infect in Modern and Legacy, and I play RG Pummeler in standard.

Whenever I play him, he always accuses me of misplaying how I pump my creatures. The way I do it is like so:

Declare attackers

Opponent declares blockers

After blockers are declared, I pump my creatures with whatever

Damage is delt, hopefully my opponent is dead.

Normally when pumping a creature, I will say something like "before damage, cast blossoming defense." I've played a lot of different people and never had an issue with how I phrase this. Perhaps I am wrong,(if so, I would like to know how to phrase what I say) but every time I play like this, he complains that we're past the combat damage step and I can't pump my creatures. Apologies for the wall of text but my questions are:

Am I okay to phrase my responses as I do?

Am I wrong, should I be cast my pumps at a different time?

What are the rule references, so whatever the case is, I can have them with me to reference?

Thanks in advance for the assistence

berryjon says... Accepted answer #1

Short answer, you're in the right. You can cast pump spells after blockers are declared, and before damage is allocated.

Long answer: Rule 509 of the Comprehensive rules spells it out, though in a long winded manner.

You declare Attackers.
You and your opponent, in priority order, put triggered abilities on the stack.
You and your opponent, in priority order, can cast spells or activate abilities.
Resolve the stack.

Your opponent declares blockers.
You and your opponent, in priority order, put triggered abilities on the stack.
You and your opponent, in priority order, can cast spells or activate abilities.
Resolve the stack.

Move on to the Combat Damage step.

What this means is that when you declare your attackers, before the opponent decides on blockers, they can do things like cast Bright Reprisal or Warning on one of your attacking creatures. You can also, for example, cast Jump on one of your creatures to give it flying before the opponent can declare a blocker for it.

Then the opponent declares their blockers. After that has been decided, each of you, in priority, can cast spells again. You can cast Giant Growth on your attacking creature here, and they can cast cards like Hold the Line or activate the ability on Angelic Page or General Jarkeld (and he's just a bundle of laughs, let me tell you).

Then, once everything is resolved, is damage dealt.

March 10, 2018 11:34 p.m.

clayperce says... #2

Unlife,
You're doing it exactly right. Like berryjon mentions, Rule 509.4 applies.

FWIW, I play Modern Infect and was on RG Pummeler for a long time in Standard too, and would get an opponent kinda like that that every now and then. Usually they were just a little clueless rather than malicious, but there was one I wondered about. For him, I always just called a Judge. Though I seriously considered printing up this great chart and pulling it out too ...

March 10, 2018 11:52 p.m.

Argy says... #3

I mean Blossoming Defense is an Instant, which means you can cast it just about any time you like.

If the Combat Damage step hasn't occurred, you are able to cast it, and that extra +2/+2 applies before the actual damage occurs.

Like others have suggested, get another player in the shop involved, who is seen as being knowledgable about rules.

The Opponent needs to learn this interaction ASAP, as people use it a lot.

March 11, 2018 12:52 a.m.

Gidgetimer says... #4

Typing on a tablet sucks so I am not going to retype my whole thing since this for moved as I was typing. Know that I make no assumptions that the involved parties don't know this, I am just providing some clarification.

The stack doesn't resolve all at once, objects on the stack resolve one at a time with a round of priority between each.

March 11, 2018 12:57 a.m.

Unlife says... #6

Thanks for the help guys, I appreciate it

clayperce, that chart is great, thanks

March 11, 2018 9:32 p.m.

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