Your Own Set of Rules Rules

Posted in Event Coverage on June 7, 2003

By Brian David-Marshall

Brian David-Marshall is a New York–based game designer who has been involved with Magic since 1994, when he started organizing tournaments and ran a Manhattan game store. Since then, he has been a judge, a player, and one of the longest-tenured columnists on, as he enters his second decade writing for the site. He is also the Pro Tour Historian and one of the commentators for the Pro Tour.

For format #4, we will hold an auction (much like WoTCs' "auction of the people") on Friday night. The players are bidding for the right to have their decks acquire 2 bonuses that make their deck operate under different rules in order to make it more powerful. These abilities are similar to the old "Vanguard" cards except they change the nature of the rules more (while Vanguards just usually gave bonuses to creatures). Players are bidding on the new rules that will apply to their deck – they are not bidding on an actual deck (which they will have to construct later).

For the auction, players will be seated randomly. Player number one will then pick one of the rule-sets to bid on. Opening bids can start anywhere, but the minimum opening bid is 25 life and 8 cards. The next player may either top the bid, by going with a lower life or card total or he may pass. If a player passes he cannot bid again on the current rule alterations being bid on. We will use the method of having all players stand up and then when a player passes (or once he wins a bid), he sits down. When a player has won a bid then the player behind him begins the new bidding process. A bid that lowers the opening card total always trumps a bid with a lower life total. In other words a bid of 25 life/ 6 cards is lower than a bid of 12 life/ 7 cards.

Players will use Friday and Saturday to construct their own decks that will best fit with the new rules that apply to them. Decks must be extended legal*. Each match will be 2 out of 3 games. 60-card minimum decks and 15- card sideboards will be used*. Rule-sets only affect your game (they do not affect your opponent).

*except when allowed by new rule-set

The seventeen rule sets are as follows:

1. (A.) Mana can be converted into any color
(B.) All your creatures gain the creature type: “sliver”
*Mana is converted at mana source speed

2. (A.) Creatures cost (1) less to play
(B.) Local enchantments cost (2) less to play
*See rule on cost reductions

3. (A.) No deck size minimum
(B.) SD: opponent discards a card
*See rule on skip draw

4. (A.) Sorceries and Instants gain “Flashback: 3+x”
(B.) Sorceries and Instants gain “Buyback: 3”
*X is the cards’ normal mana cost
*A card already with flashback may be “flashed” at either cost
*A card already with buyback may be “bought-back” with either cost
*A card being “flashed” cannot be “bought-back”

5. (A.) Commons cost (1) less to play
(B.) “Banned cards” are instead restricted
*See rule on cost reductions
*”Banned cards” are the 13 extended banned cards from legal extended sets

6. (A.) All non-land cards gain Terra-Forming
(B.) Add 1 to all numbers appearing in all spells rules’ text
*Terra-forming is from the NewHorzions card set (rules can be found in archives)
*Only numbers written as #’s (1,2,3 etc.), not words, within rules text are affected
*Add to the absolute value of numbers (signs: + or – are not changed)
*All numbers within the rules text must be changed; “x’s” are unaffected

7. (A.) Uncommons cost (1) less to play
(B.) All cards gain “Cycling: 3”
*See rule on cost reductions

8. (A.) Opponents play with their hand and top library card face-up
(B.) SD: Search your library for a card, shuffle and then put it on top
*See rules on skip draw

9. (A.) Rares cost (1) less to play
(B.) 30-card sideboard is legal
*See rule on cost reductions
*If a sideboard is used then it MUST be 30 cards as opposed to 15

10. (A.) Artifacts cost (1) less to play
(B.) Global Enchantments cost (1) less to play
**See rule on cost reductions

11. (A.) All spells gain “Filter: 3”
(B.) SD: put the bottom card of your library into your hand
*Filter is from the NewHorzions card set (rules can be found in archives)
*See rule on skip draw

12. (A.) Sorceries cost (1) less to play
(B.) Sorceries can be played as instants
*See rule on cost reductions
*Sorceries played this way are instants (cost is not reduced, cannot be enveloped)

13. (A.) Set your opening hand
(B.) SD: exchange a card in hand for a card in your sideboard
*Deck must be shuffled after hand is set
*See rules on skip draw

14. (A.) Instants cost (1) less to play
(B.) Reverse the base power and toughness of your creatures
*See rule on cost reductions
*Effects that alter power or toughness are not affected

15. (A) Draw an extra card during your draw step
(B.) SD: gain 3 life
*See rules on skip draw

16. (A.) Creatures gain "Morph: X-2"
(B.) SD: search your library for a basic land and put it directly into play
*X is a creatures’ normal mana cost, which is then reduced by (2)
*See rule on cost reductions
*A creature normally with morph can “morph” for either cost
*See rule on skip draw
*This ability does not count against the “one-land-per-turn” rule

17. (A.) Cards from Ice Age Block are legal
(B.) Cards from MirvLight Block are legal
*The current extended banned list is still in effect

Cost Reductions: Cards with casting cost reductions only reduce the cards colorless mana requirement. This effect functions exactly like the medallions work, and their effects are cumulative with such cards.

Skip Draw: (SD) During your draw step you may skip the drawing of 1 card for this ability (after “:”) to take place. This ability cannot be activated if another effect has/will cause you to not draw this card this turn (i.e. words of war, necro). This ability can only be activated if there is at least one card remaining in your library. An ability or card that allows you to draw a card during your draw step cannot be skipped for this effect. Only the one card (or two with Howling Mine or a certain rule-set etc.) drawn normally during your draw step can be skipped.

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