All rise!

Hello duelists, and welcome back to Court of Appeals! Every two weeks I'll answer your questions about card interactions, game mechanics and tournament policy submitted to askjudgejoe@gmail.com. I get quite a few submissions, and I most likely can't get to them all. To improve your chances of your e-mail making it to the column, please follow these ground rules...

-I will not answer new questions in the article Comments. If you have a related follow-up question to a question I answer here, you can ask it in the Comments and I will answer it in a reply.

-Please ask only one question per e-mail. Grammar and clarity helps, too.

-All answers I give are unofficial unless backed up by an official source.

-I'll be using official game terms whenever possible. If I use jargon (even jargon that is perceived to be universally accepted), I'll note that it's jargon.

-I'll note sources whenever possible.

-I'll always use the official card database as my card text reference. You can find the official card database here: http://www.db.yugioh-card.com/yugiohdb/

-I will not answer any questions about cards not released in the TCG.

Please be seated.

Earl writes…

How goes it, Judge Joe?

My question pertains to Xiangke Magician's Pendulum Effect. Let's say I use its ability on Gem-Knight Pearl, then use Pearl to Xyz Summon another Rank 4. Do the Xyz Materials on Gem-Knight Pearl become Xyz Materials on the new Rank 4 monster? ~ Regards, Earl

Hello Earl!

Xyz Materials on an Xyz Monster only transfer to a new Xyz Monster if the Summoning procedure says so. Most "Rank-Up" Xyz like Gaia Dragon, the Thunder Charger , Downerd Magician and the Rank-Up-Magic Spells have the phrase "Xyz Materials attached to that target also become Xyz Materials on the Summoned monster."

A few notable exceptions don't include this phrase: Number F0: Utopic Future doesn't have this phrase, and neither does Xiangke Magician. Only the first Xyz Monster itself becomes the Material for the new Xyz Monster; the old Materials will be sent to the graveyard.

#####CARDID= 18124 #####

Danny writes…

Hi Judge Joe. Thanks for answering ruling questions and writing your other articles. I love reading them and they've helped me become a better player.

Ever since Pendulum monsters came out I've liked them, But recently I've been hearing things that are confusing me. Like, if a Pendulum Monster' on the field, either in the Pendulum Zone or Monster Zone, would leave the field while a card like Macro Cosmos is on the field, the Pendulum Monster's banished. That doesn't make sense because I've looked at the new Beginner's Guide and on page 20 it says "Whenever one of your Pendulum Monster Cards on the field (regardless of which Zone it is in, or even if it is a monster or not) would be sent to the Graveyard, place it face-up on your Extra Deck instead." My understanding is that it would go to the Extra Deck in that situation. If you could clarify this, it would be a big help.

Thank you ~ Danny

Hello Danny!

The beginner's guide that Konami includes in some of its products is not the full rulebook. Most Structure Decks include the latest rulebook, but for whatever reason, the Master of Pendulum Structure Deck did not.

You can find the latest rulebook on the official site here, and on page 46 under the "Rules vs. Card Effects" section, it basically says that if a card effect goes against a game rule, follow the card effect. In this case, game rules are telling you to put the Pendulum Monster on the Extra Deck instead of going to the graveyard, but Macro Cosmos says to banish the monster instead of going to the graveyard. Since the card goes against the game rule, follow the card text. Your Pendulum Monster would be banished.

Danilo writes…

Hello Joe,

Thanks for answering my previous two questions. I hope you can help me again. This time I have a question about Kozmo DOG Fighter, specifically its effect to Summon a Token.

You've wrote in Court of Appeals on 12/10/2015 that the phrase "Once per turn:" is an Ignition Effect, which can only be activated during its controller's Main Phase. But because there isn't "during your Standby Phase," my opponent can activate this effect during my Standby Phase?

Kind regards, Danilo

Hello Danilo!

As I kinda hinted at in my last Court of Appeals, the Yu-Gi-Oh! TCG's method of describing types of effects is… not exact. If you see "Once per turn:" on a card with no other descriptors, or something like Constellar Kaus which says "Up to twice per turn:" that's your hint that it's an Ignition Effect. But if the text mentions a specific time or event needed to activate the effect, then it's a Trigger Effect. Kozmo DOG Fighter specifically activates in any Standby Phase – yours and your opponent's – so it's a Trigger effect and not an Ignition Effect.

Juan Oliveria writes…

Hello Judge Joe. Long time reader of your Mermail Abyssbalaen adventures! Here's my question:

It was early in the game and I controlled The Grand Spellbook Tower but had no Spellbook Spell Cards in my graveyard. My opponent had a Mind Crush set. I entered my Draw Phase and drew for turn, and we agreed I didn't have Standby as there was nothing to do in the phase. I went into my Main Phase, and my opponent did nothing because he saw the only opportunity to activate the Mind Crush was on my Draw Phase.

Are we missing something? Is there a way a card effect can be activated on open game state after phases are entered? Thanks in advance!

Hello Juan!

Take a read at the Fast Effect timing rules page. Since Mind Crush is a Normal Trap Card, he can activate it at any time he can activate a Fast Effect - except the Damage Step, because it's the Damage Step.

He can activate Mind Crush during your Draw Phase assuming you didn't want to activate your own Fast Effect first. Even though you can't activate The Grand Spellbook Tower's effect during the Standby Phase, you still have to go through the Standby Phase; it's not optional. Assuming you don't activate anything else at the start of the Standby Phase, your opponent could also activate Mind Crush when you pass on taking an action. Finally, when you enter the Main Phase, you have the first chance to take any action you can normally take before the opponent can flip-up the Mind Crush.

If the game state's considered "open" as per the Fast Effect rules page, the turn player has the chance to take any action they're normally able to. However, there are at least two chances to activate Mind Crush to be activated between the Draw Phase and the Main Phase.

Cody writes…

I have a question about this chain. If player A Summons a Winged Beast and Player B chains Solemn Warning or Grand Horn of Heaven, can player A chain Icarus Attack? Chains do resolve backwards but I was thinking after a counter trap is activated only a counter can be chained after it because of Spell Speed.

Hello Cody!

You are correct in thinking that you can't chain Icarus Attack to a counter trap. Spell Speeds will prevent that. Also, Icarus Attack requires you to Tribute a Winged Beast you control. Take a look at page 49 of rulebook 9.1. You only control a monster after its been Summoned, so your Winged Beast that's in the middle of being Summoned isn't under your control yet, so you can't Tribute it for any reason.

And, because I need to nit-pick the terms used, nothing is "chained" to a Summon since most Summons don't use the chain. It's simply an action the player takes. See page 47 of the rulebook.

#####CARDID= 19161 #####

Last question!

Łukasz Matyasik writes…

Dear judge,

I was playing in a local tournament and was against a D/D/D deck. It was my opponent's turn and he declared an attack with D/D/D Wave Oblivion King Caesar Ragnarok by saying "I attack your Destiny Hero - Diamond Dude." He didn't say anything about activating his card effect at the time. Then I responded with the activation of Mirror Force. After that my opponent had some time to think – one minute maybe - and said he activates the effect of D/D/D Wave Oblivion King Caesar Ragnarok.

The judge said my opponent can activate the card's effect and take one of my monsters, then Mirror Force activates. The judge justified it by saying your opponent would lose too much and I didn't give him enough time to activate its effect.

My questions:

1. Could my opponent activate the effect of D/D/D Wave Oblivion King Caesar Ragnarok?

2. Could he take one of my monsters with D/D/D King Caesar Ragnarok? (I had a Number 101: Silent Honor ARK on the field alongside Destiny Hero - Diamond Dude.)

3. How can I avoid these kinds of situations in the future?

With regards, Łukasz Matyasik

Hello Łukasz!

Your question comes up every now and then, and the root cause can range from lack of rules knowledge to lack of communication. Sometimes those two reasons are related, which may be the case here.

So, first off, yes, your opponent may activate D/D/D Wave Oblivion King Caesar Ragnarok's effect when its own attack is declared. When that happens, your opponent gets the first chance to activate any card or effect that responds to an attack, so if he wants to use King Caesar Ragnarok's effect, he must do so immediately after declaring the attack and the attack target. The effect must be chain link 1 and must be activated before you can even activate Mirror Force. Your opponent can't pass on using the effect then chain King Caesar Ragnarok's effect to Mirror Force because Spell Speeds.

Please keep this in mind, though: you may still activate Mirror Force even if your opponent uses King Caesar Ragnarok's effect.

Now, how you can avoid these situations in the future… that's always tricky because playing this game is very much like a formal dance. The two players have to know what they're doing and how to interact with the other person; if they don't, they end up stepping all over each other and it becomes mess.

So let's go back to your situation. Your opponent attacks and says nothing. There are a few possibilities here…

1) Your opponent doesn't know that he needs to activate King Caesar Ragnarok's effect now or else he can't do it.

2) Your opponent thinks he can chain King Caesar Ragnarok's ability as if it's Spell Speed 2 (which it isn't).

3) (This won't happen as often, but the possibility exists.) Your opponent is waiting for a response from you before saying "hey wait, we need to back up." A judge may want to start investigating for Unsporting Conduct – Cheating if they suspect the player knows enough about the game to know how his own cards work.

Whatever the case, you can prevent misplays and miscommunications from happening. Your opponent has the chance to activate King Caesar Ragnarok when they declare the attack. When that happens, ask your opponent "are you activating any cards or effects when you declare the attack?" If they respond "no," you can use Mirror Force and it will resolve exactly as you want it to.

Should your opponent say "I want to chain King Caesar Ragnarok," it goes to a Judge call where the situation becomes a clear rules knowledge question in which your opponent learns how this particular interaction should work. The argument of "I didn't have enough time" doesn't work if they specifically declined to activate the effect. And in the rare case where your opponent's attempting to cheat his way into free information, you avoid that entirely.

And that's it for this week's Court of Appeals! If you have a question about card interactions, game mechanics or tournament policy, send me an e-mail (one question per e-mail please!) to askjudgejoe@gmail.com and your question could be answered in a future Court of Appeals!

Court is adjourned

-Joe Frankino


Joe is a Yu-Gi-Oh! Judge and player from Long Island, New York. At a local tournament recently, Joe started having flashbacks of Dragon Ruler / Spellbook format. He broke out into a cold sweat before he remembered that it's not 2013 and Mecha Phantom Beast Dracossack doesn't cost $120 anymore.