Rulings Round-Up

October 17th, 2009

Coming out of SHONEN JUMP Championship Orlando, there were a few rulings and card interactions that came up repeatedly. A lot of Duelists weren’t familiar with how certain cards worked together (or didn’t work in some cases), so let’s take a quick look at some of the most common cases.

“Blackwing – Vayu the Emblem of Honor” and “Royal Oppression”

A lot of Duelists are familiar with “Necro Gardna,” a card that is removed from the Graveyard as a cost in order to activate its effect. But many of those Duelists went on to play “Blackwing – Vayu the Emblem of Honor” Decks, and that caused some confusion, because while Vayu is a card that you remove from the Graveyard to claim an effect, removing Vayu is part of the effect resolution – it’s not part of a cost.

Because Vayu’s effect doesn’t remove Vayu from the Graveyard until its effect successfully resolves, activating “Royal Oppression” to negate Vayu’s effect is possible, but pointless. If you negate Vayu’s effect, Vayu and its partnered Blackwing just stay in the Graveyard. They can be activated again immediately once the Chain is finished, so the Duelist that Chained “Royal Oppression’s” effect is just wasting 800 Life Points.

This is the reason why Rodrigo Togores, winner from SHONEN JUMP Championship Orlando, was able to play “Royal Oppression” himself in his tournament-winning Vayu Deck. Togores knew that Oppression would shut down opposing Lightsworn and Gladiator Beast Decks, while only limiting a handful of his own plays. So what makes Vayu different from “Necro Gardna,” and how did it slip past hundreds of Duelists? The explanation is actually pretty obvious and lies in the card text.

“Necro Gardna” says: “Remove from play this card from your Graveyard to negate 1 attack this turn from a monster your opponent controls.”

“Blackwing – Vayu the Emblem of Honor” says: “If this card is in your Graveyard, you can remove from play this card plus 1 non-Tuner “Blackwing” monster in your Graveyard, and Special Summon 1 “Blackwing ” Synchro Monster from your Extra Deck whose Level equals the total Levels of the removed monsters.”

The use of the word “and” in Vayu’s text indicates that the entire text represented there is a single effect at resolution. It isn’t segmented into cost and effect like “Necro Gardna’s” effect, which is clearly divided into two portions separated by the word “to.” You have to do the first thing, “to” claim the effect of “Necro Gardna.”

“Blackwing – Vayu the Emblem of Honor” and “Shiny Black “C””

Speaking of Vayu, a lot of Duelists haven’t noticed that “Shiny Black “C”” can destroy the copies of “Blackwing Armed Wing” and “Blackwing Armor Master” that Vayu Special Summons. These Duelists are confused because they think “Shiny Black “C”” stops Synchro Summons, while Vayu only Special Summons the Synchro Monsters it brings out.

But that’s not how it works. Once again, the solution lies in the card text, and the effect of “Shiny Black “C”” states that it works, “When 1 Synchro Monster is Special Summoned on your opponent’s side of the field…” While all Synchro Summons are Special Summons, not all Special Summons count as Synchro Summons – Summons that result from Vayu’s effect are not Synchro Summons, but those monsters can still be destroyed by “Shiny Black “C.””

“Red-Eyes Darkness Metal Dragon” and “Five-Headed Dragon”

Ancient Prophecy’s “White Night Dragon” and the Ancient Prophecy Special Edition reprint of “Red-Eyes Wyvern” are getting more and more Duelists interested in Dragon Decks. But a few little mistakes can trip up your game. For instance, here’s the text for “Red-Eyes Darkness Metal Dragon’s” first effect:

“You can remove from play 1 Dragon-Type monster you control to Special Summon this card.”

This effect lets you Special Summoned Red-Eyes from your hand – not from your Graveyard. There were several Duelists in Orlando who tried to bring “Red-Eyes Darkness Metal Dragon” back from the Graveyard, not realizing that to do that they would need “Call of the Haunted” or “Red-Eyes Wyvern.”

Moving on, check out this line of text from “Five-Headed Dragon,” the biggest and baddest monster in any Dragon Deck’s arsenal:

“This monster cannot be Special Summoned except by Fusion Summon.”

That means that even once you’ve successfully Fusion Summoned “Five-Headed Dragon” with “Future Fusion,” “Dragon’s Mirror,” or even “Polymerization,” you can’t Special Summon “Five-Headed Dragon” back from the Graveyard if it gets destroyed. If a card says it can’t be Special Summoned “except by” a particular method, only that method of Special Summoning will ever work for that particular monster.

“D.D. Crow” and the Damage Step

There was some confusion in the Round 1 Feature Match from Orlando, where we saw Mike Powers take X-Sabers against Germal Daniel’s DARK “Skill Drain” Deck.

In that Match, we saw this play:

“Powers Normal Summoned Fulhelmknight and attacked a “Sheep Token,” but when he tried to Special Summon his second Fulhelmknight with the effect of his first, he lost out to Daniel’s “D.D. Crow.””

This was later identified as an illegal play and a mistake on Daniel’s behalf. “XX-Saber Fulhelmknight’s” effect triggers during the Damage Step, but “D.D. Crow’s” effect can’t be activated during the Damage Step. The main categories of cards that can be activated during the Damage Step are:

  • Spell Speed 2 effects that alter the ATK or DEF of monsters
  • Counter Traps
  • Effects with text that state they activate in the Damage Step (including those that say they activate when a monster is sent to the Graveyard by battle)

“D.D. Crow” cannot be activated during the Damage Step, making X-Sabers that much better.

Be sure you know these rulings for your Duels, because if you Duel enough you’re bound to run into at least one of these situations. As long as you know they work, these situations are super-easy to deal with.