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What does it mean to change the game state?


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#1
sharpobject

sharpobject

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Hello,
 
Y'varn reads "Battle Ability: Each player puts a unit into play from his hand at his HQ." If Alice wins a battle at Y'varn and triggers the battle ability, Bob is forced to put a unit into play or to ask a tournament organizer to verify for Alice that Bob has no units in hand. In the latter case, Alice gains some information about some cards that are not normally visible to Alice. But just gaining this information does not count as a change in the game state, as ktom writes here: https://community.fa...comment-1925670
 
Is it ever legal to use the ability of Seer Adept, which reads "Reaction: After the command phase begins, look at a target card your opponent controls in reserve."? Note that this ability never has the potential to change the game state, given what we know about Y'varn, unless information of the form "a card in a hidden zone has exactly this name" is part of the game state but other information about cards in hidden zones is not part of the game state.
 
Is it legal to use the ability of Patrolling Wraith, which reads "Reaction: After this unit destroys an enemy unit by an attack, your opponent must reveal his hand and discard each revealed card with the same name as the destroyed unit." if Alice's Patrolling Wraith destroy's an Earth Caste Technician which Bob both owns and controls, while the other 2 Earth Caste Technicians that Bob owns are also in play? In this case, the ability does not have the potential to cause Bob to discard any cards because of the deck building rules.
 
If FFG were to print this card, would it be legal to play it?
"Sneeky Peek"
0 cost event
Action: Look at your opponent's hand.
 
And aside from these specific issues, I guess I'd like to know, in general, how can I tell whether an effect has the potential to change the game state? Should I proceed through a hypothetical resolution of the effect, using only the information available to me as a player (but pretending not to know any information about my opponent's hidden zones - for example, if I used Urien's Oubliette or Deception I could know that my opponent has a unit in their hand, but I could still be disallowed by the rules from triggering Y'varn), assuming no interrupts or reactions occur, then compare the game state before and after the effect? Is that sufficient? And if so, which information is included in a game state, other than this stuff? Thanks.
 
Partial list of game state things:
  • The entire contents of each player's discard pile, including the order
  • The entire contents of each player's hand and deck, including the order of the deck (if we think that "shuffle your hand into your deck, then draw that many cards" generally has the potential to change the game state)
  • The location, ready-vs-exhausted status, card type, traits, face-up-vs-face-down status, text boxes, abilities, number of instances of each keyword, amounts associated with each keyword that has an associated amount, faction affiliations, number of red/blue/green planet symbols, ATK, HP, cost, number of command icons, which card it is attached to, and amount of tokens of each kind (damage, infestation, etc.) for each card in play
  • The entire contents of each player's victory display
  • Which player has the initiative
  • The amount of resources possessed by each player
  • How much of each limit or maximum each player has used (though generally the effect-part of effects won't change this)
  • Which cards are revealed vs not revealed (this is apparently required if we want Urien's Oubliette's constant effect to work, although it is unclear whether this rule applies to constant effects)
  • Which processes (round, phase, step in phase, attack, dealing damage, resolving an effect, deploying a card, etc.) are in progress, and which stages they are in, and which events are known to be upcoming in those processes (I think this one is necessary if we want effects like those on Backlash and Herald of the WAAAGH! to generally be allowed to be played)


#2
sharpobject

sharpobject

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Hello,
 
For the Tau'va reads "Action: Exhaust your warlord to ready each unit you control with 1 or more attachments."
 
Alice has a ready Aun'shi with an attached Honor Blade and does not control any other units with 1 or more attachments. She currently has 5 resources, and Bob has just gone down to 3 resources by playing Warpstorm, damaging her Aun'ui Prelate. Alice is concerned that Bob will play Raid, then play Klaivex Warleader, killing the Prelate, so she would like to spend 2 resources to get down to 3. Is she allowed to spend the 2 resources to play For the Tau'va?
 
In this case, because of the rule about the word "To", it seems like the rule "A card ability can only be initiated if its effect has some potential to change the game state, and its cost (after modifiers) has the potential to be paid in full." applies separately to these two things:
  • Exhaust your warlord to ready each unit you control with 1 or more attachments.
  • Ready each unit you control with 1 or more attachments.

The second thing will definitely change the game state: Aun'shi will be exhausted before, and ready after. For the first thing, does exhausting a thing and then readying it change the game state? Or in general, does a sequence of changes to the game state that cancel each other out change the game state?

 

Thanks.



#3
sharpobject

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In the spirit of trolling slightly less, I'll try to answer my question about For the Tau'va, since it seems to be answered in the FAQ, but if anyone can confirm I would still appreciate it.

 

The FAQ says:
"(3.4) Initiation of Card Abilities In order to trigger a card ability, the possibility that at least some aspect of that card ability’s effect might successfully resolve must exist. (In other words, card abilities cannot be initiated just to pay the cost.) If, given the current game state, it is impossible for at least one aspect of the effect to resolve, the ability cannot be triggered. This check is made during step one of Initiating Abilities (see pages 8-9 of the Rules Reference Guide), when all play restrictions are checked."

 

This seems to be the "no time travel" rule from L5R, so it seems like we really should ask ourselves while every unit we have with an attachment is ready, "Would readying all my units with attachments change the game state?" Since they are all ready already, it would not, so we cannot play For the Tau'va.

 

Again, I would appreciate confirmation, because I am only like 90% sure about this one.

 

My questions about which sorts of gaining private information are and are not changes to the game state remain open.