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J_Roel

Saving a cost from being paid

6 posts in this topic

I was at my local store championship last week and a question came up (not one that really pertained to the game, more of a question for the scholars, lol). A player asked what would happen if a card that must be discarded as part of its cost was saved from leaving play.

 

Our TO and I are both pretty stubborn rules lawyers and we were both very confident in our answers. He said that, if the card was saved (as it wasn't one that explicitly said "Cannot be saved"), the cost would not have been paid and the effect would fail to resolve.

 

I agreed with his reasoning, but argued that the timing structure doesn't allow for a save/cancel response until after the effect has actually initiated, at which point the cost has already necessarily been paid and the card is already moribund and beyond saving.

 

Which of us is correct?

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You are correct because of exactly that.  The card is already "moribund:leaves play" before the save/cancel response step, so there is no opportunity to save a card that is leaving play to pay a cost of an effect.  The "cannot be saved" is printed on some cards sometimes as more of a reminder.

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In a way, you are both right. He is right historically, but you are "more right" given the bigger picture.

 

- His reasoning is correct in that a save means the kill/discard/whatever never happened, meaning that the cost wasn't paid, so the effect cannot be resolved. And it was the reasoning advanced for this situation for a long time.

 

(As an aside, the problem with this reasoning was always the time-traveller's paradox: if the save means the cost was never paid, and if the cost was never paid the effect was never triggered, then the opportunity to save from being killed/discarded/etc. never existed either, right?) 

 

- Then the FAQ was updated to include the "order of initiation" found on p. 18-19 of the FAQ. This update made it clear that anything killed/discarded/etc. to pay a cost was killed/discarded/etc. completely in Step 1 of the action window without an independent opportunity to save. So your reasoning is correct in that the timing structure does not allow for even the opportunity to save from leaving play to pay a cost (no matter whether there is a "cannot be saved" after the cost or not).

Devon Greatwolf likes this

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Okay, that's interesting; he said his reasoning was the correct reasoning in the past and that if he was wrong, it was only due to "recent" changes to the rules. He has been playing for longer than I have (since the CCG), so I suppose his understanding of the rule came from before the new timing structure was created. I'll be sure to let him know the next time I see him. Thanks for the quick response, guys.

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Yeah..."recent" is kind of relative here since the relevant clarification on the "order of initiation" was made while the game was still a CCG.

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