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State Based Actions


#1

Continuing the discussion from Rules Questions thread:

Orpal’s maxband ability is triggered. In order for it to trigger, the triggering action has to happen with Orpal already at maxband. I am mildly certain the action of actually gaining levels is a triggered action, while almost everything else in the example is a state based action.

That said, this particular line suggests the gaining of levels is a state based action. So then, Orpal hits maxband, then remove two-step, then kill messenger. Alternately, state based actions all happen simultaneously, operating off the starting board state regardless of order. Which actually makes the most sense, given the ruling on how two captured bugblatters and judgment day work.


#2

[quote=“Jadiel”]If they are state-based actions then here’s a question for you (or @sharpobject, I guess):
I have a midband Orpal in play. My opponent has a L1 River, with 2 damage (2/1), a Timely Messenger (1/1), and an Older Brother (2/2).

  • Orpal casts Sickness, targeting River and Timely Messenger.
  • Spell resolves, placing a -1/-1 rune on both units.
  • State based effects mean both go to the discard pile, and Orpal gains 2 levels hitting maxband (River moves from discard to Hero zone also as a state-based effect, but I don’t think this is relevant).

I’m pretty sure it’s been previously ruled that Orpal’s max band ability doesn’t trigger here, as even though gaining 2 levels is a state based effect, it still happens after Messenger dying, and so he wasn’t actually maxband when it triggered.

Now suppose the situation is the same, but Two-Step is in play targeting Timely Messenger (3/3) and Older Brother (4/4).

  • Orpal casts Sickness, targeting River and Timely Messenger.
  • Spell resolves, placing a -1/-1 rune on both units.
  • State based effects mean River goes to discard pile (Messenger is now a 2/2). Orpal gains 2 levels hitting maxband,. Two-Step is sacrificed. Messenger stops receiving Two Step’s buff. Messenger dies (as it’s now a 0/0).
  • Does Orpal maxband trigger, placing a -1/-1 rune on Older Brother?

I should note that if Channeled spells are a triggered effect, not a state-based one, I’m pretty sure that Orpal’s maxband will trigger here. If it’s a state-based one it depends on whether there’s a priority-based system (@sharpobject’s post implied that some effects might not be as fast as others), or whether the active player gets to pick how they resolve.[/quote]

So the plain language answer to example 1 is “Orpal wasn’t maxed when River and Timely Messenger were killed, therefore you don’t get to use his ability to hit Older Brother.” If that’s the case, then state based actions must have their own queue system just like cascading triggered effects. Pretend that Messenger was in Technician for this example.

Time 1: Cast Sickness and put runes on River and Messenger
Time 2: (state based) River and Messenger both die, (state based queue) Orpal gets 2 levels and reaches max band, (triggered queue) Messenger’s controller draws a card

The active player can choose to resolve River/Messenger any way he wants, but Orpal will always get his 2 levels after that. If state based actions didn’t have a queue, then Orpal would absolutely be able to use his maxband ability off the death of Messenger, as far as I can tell.

As for the example with two step, I don’t think it matters whether Channeling is triggered or state based. As either way, Messenger now dies after Orpal is max band.

State based example:

Time 1: Cast Sickness and put runes on River and Messenger
Time 2: (state based) River dies, (state based queue) Orpal gets 2 levels and reaches max band AND Two Step is sacrificed
Time 3: active player chooses that Orpal gets levels 1st, then Two Step is sacrificed, (state based queue) Messenger dies, (tiggered queue) Messenger’s controller draws a card AND Orpal puts runes on stuff

Triggered example:

Time 1: Cast Sickness and put runes on River and Messenger
Time 2: (state based) River dies, (state based queue) Orpal gets 2 levels and reaches max band, (triggered queue) Two Step is sacrificed
Time 3: Two step is sacced, (state based) Messenger dies, (triggered queue) Messenger’s controller draws a card, Orpal puts runes on stuff

Personally I think it makes the most sense for Channeling to be the same timing as illusions being killed when they are targeted, which is (I think) state based. They’re both keywords, and so fall more in the “you know what to do because of the rules” than “you know what to do because of the card.” But I don’t think either way it changes what happens in this case.

All of this is, of course, contingent on “state based effects use a queue system” and not “some state based actions have different speeds from others.” I desperately hope it’s the former and not the latter…


#3

Haha, I was typing up a similar post just to go through the example in detail for my own sake. It’s pretty much exactly the same as yours so I won’t bother posting it. I agree that it makes the most sense for there to be an “SBA queue” that must be cleared before resolving actions from the “triggered queue”.

(Hopefully it’s correct, because this actually gives us a good framework to resolve all the weird timing questions, and it’s not even that complicated!)


#4

Fingers crossed!

@sharpobject


#5

Hello,

My plan is that you just check for SBAs until there aren’t any, and only run the first one you encounter. Orpal’s maxband still doesn’t trigger in the first scenario above though.

Earlier this post said that it wouldn’t trigger in the second one either, but that was wrong, sorry.

Also, sacrificing Two Step because you lost River or one of the units is a triggered ability, but the buff stops working as soon as you lose one of the units.

Edit again: One situation where this system of SBAs and the chosen order matters is for stuff like “If I use sickness on my opponent’s Timely Messenger with a +1/+1 rune and 1 damage, will I get to trigger Orpal’s maxband?” In a similar situation in MtG the answer is yes but in Codex we’ll cancel the runes before killing off the Timely Messenger, so the answer will be no.


#6

I’d like to add an explanation of this to the rules thread, but I don’t think I have a good enough understanding myself to write it yet.

A key timing question in my mind: do state-based actions go in the queue like any other triggered action (e.g. from a card ability), or do they “skip ahead” to the front of the queue? For simplicity’s sake I hope it’s the former but I don’t know if that’s correct.


#7

They for sure skip ahead of triggered effects and can interrupt multiple sentences within a spell.

The question here is if there is some order to them, or if the active player just applies them one at a time in whatever order they wish.


#8

There’s an order. You go down the list and do only the first one that needs doing. You do it to all the things it applies to simultaneously. The rest of the game can proceed only once you can go down the list without needing to do any of the actions.


#9

Thanks @sharpobject, that’s really helpful. Two follow-up questions:

Am I right that “Discard any attachments whose target has left play” is a SBA, and if so, where does it come in the priority list of SBAs?

I have a L4 Orpal in play. My opponent has a L1 River with 2 damage (2/1), a Two stepped Older Brother with 3 damage (4/1) and a Two stepped Hasty Messenger with a -1/-1 rune (2/2).

  • Orpal casts Sickness, targeting River and Older Brother.
  • Older Brother and River each get a -1/-1 rune
  • SBA: Older Brother (3/0) and River (1/0) have now both got lethal damage and so both go to discard, Orpal gains 2 levels and hits maxband, Sacrifice Two step is added to the queue
  • SBA: River is pulled from discard and sent to Command Zone
  • SBA: Two step buff falls off Hasty Messenger
  • SBA: Hasty Messenger now has lethal damage and is sent to discard, Orpal maxband triggers and is added to the queue
  • Queue: Two-step is sacrificed
  • Queue: Orpal Maxband fires

Is this correct? Does the order of state-based actions mean that the two triggers (Sac Two step and Orpal Maxband) can’t be ordered by the active player? Or are the SBA considered to be simultaneous?


#10

Does anything change based on whether or not the Hasty Messenger is in the Technician spot? If his death triggers a reshuffle of the discard, is the Two-Step card also in the discard to be reshuffled?


#11

EDIT: actually, thinking it through a little more has made me unsure… do effects triggered at different points during a series of SBAs enter the queue simultaneously, or in the order they were triggered? If it’s the former, active player can decide whether or not Two Step gets reshuffled, but if it’s the latter, Two Step must end up in the shuffle, right?


#12

This setup clearly has River dying before the Technician, so the “sacrifice Two Step” will always enter the queue before technician draw.


#13

This looks fine to me. “Two step buff falls off Timely Messenger” is probably just part of recalculating the derived state rather than an SBA, but I don’t think this detail has any implications for the rest of the game. The two triggers cannot be reordered here.


#14

So can simultaneous SBAs be ordered by active player? Or is there some way to resolve simultaneous SBAs?


#15

What do you mean? If you need to cancel +1/+1 and -1/-1 runes, AND there are units that need to die, you can only cancel +1/+1 and -1/-1 runes, because of the order of the list ok.


#16

What list?


#17