file Relentless Reaper vs Blissful Agony and scheduled combat rulings ambiguity

19 Dec 2019 09:54 - 19 Dec 2019 10:15 #98304 by Nauro
Main question (happened two days ago in a casual game) :
After a minion schedules a combat by striking Blissful Agony at superior VAL, can the opposing player play Relentless Reaper at superior THN (assuming there's blood to burn to make use of the effect) to make the scheduled combat void?
Bonus: Can you play a Relentless Reaper after Psyche?

Were I judging a case like this in a tournament, I would rule that you can't play Relentless Reaper, because of the existing general ruling (combat section) [RTR 20020501], but that seems to be an incomplete answer.


I will explain what I mean by incomplete in a jiffy:

Here is the general ruling from 2002, combat section:
An effect which would cause (a new) combat cannot be used if there is already a pending combat queued. [RTR 20020501]
Links to groups-beta.google.com/groups?selm=3CD0043D.410398C1%40white-wolf.com

What about that (a new) part? Is it reminder text? It it a clarification? Does causing combat include both Relentless Reaper and Telepathic Tracking, which technically extend an already existing combat, but could be said to cause more combat?

If you read the linked email from LSJ, the line preceding the quoted sentence at the ruling is about interrupting scheduled effects, and it gives equivalence to effects that extend combat (ie RR or TT) and those that shedule a new one (psyche, blissful agony, etc):

If an effect resolves and sets up an effect to be resolved later (e.g.,
Undead Persistence's torpor effect or Siren's Lure's combat), then the
effect will not be canceled by "interruptions" (extending combat/starting
combat/etc.)
.


The bolded part of the quoted text is what implies the equivalence.

Given this context, we return to the sentence of the ruling, to the question of why "(a new)" is in brackets. If (a new) means a mandatory condition, then it shouldn't be in brackets. We have two interpretations, as the ruling is currently written:

1) If the [RTR 20020501] is meant to cover only effects that schedule a new combat (Psyche, Blissful Agony, Marie-Pierre, Fast Reaction, etc) and their interactions with each other, removing brackets would remove the confusion.

2) If the [RTR 20020501] covers all similar effects, including Relentless Reaper and Telepathic Tracking, I'd suggest adding an unambiguous addition to the ruling.
Perhaps rewording it into "Neither an effect which would cause a new combat, nor extend the existing combat can be used if there is already a pending combat queued." would work?

There is no ruling in General Rulings or Card Rulings for Psyche, Blissful Agony, Telepathic Tracking nor Relentless Reaper that clarifies this case.

But, if you're Relentless enough, you can find a forum post by Pascal Bertrand, when Psyche's window of opportunity was changed:
www.vekn.net/forum/rules-questions/16788#16794
This is in 2011, and there are no rulings mentioning this, nor does the post reference any rulings itself (meaning that according to the tournament rulebook it has no bearing on the rules of the game until it becomes an official ruling - as per 2.1. of Tournament Rules) :

>what happens if the acting minion plays a Psyche, then the reacting plays Telepathic Tracking?

A new round of combat will happen (TT's "combat does not end"). Psyche!'s "start a new combat after this round" effect is lost (as much as Rotschreck's "send that vampire to torpor after combat has ended" is lost)


Is this 2011 post correct?

That would mean that since Telepathic Tracking can void a scheduled combat by Psyche, it should also be able to void a scheduled combat by Blissful Agony, same with Relentless Reaper.

Since the 2011 post talks about "as much as Rotschreck's", we can see that the Rötschreck ruling is in the very same email from LSJ - [RTR 20020501] (linked above) . There, it specifically is said:

Effects that end combat and then do something else after combat (all in the
single resolution of the effect) will fizzle if combat doesn't end or if a
new combat is started.

How can Psyche be beaten by Telepathic Tracking "as much as Rotschreck's" when there's no direct equivalence? Psyche is not an effect that ends combat and does something else after combat. Psyche resolves as it is played, and a new combat is scheduled (caused). Why can TT be played? Is it not covered by the original [RTR 20020501], about causing new combats?

If Pascal's post is an active ruling, then general ruling [RTR 20020501] should be updated to not have brackets, as to leave room for Telepathic Tracking and Relentless Reaper (and other future cards with the same effect) to trump over already scheduled combats.
Also, Pascal's ruling of TT trumping Psyche should be included in the general rulings, allowing all combat continuation effects to trump over all new combat scheduling effects. Current rulings on Rötschreck and Psyche do not cover this exact case, unless by huge leaps of logic.

If Pascal's 2011 post is not a ruling, but rather a misleading interpretation, then please consider rewording the general ruling about combat [RTR 20020501] to lose the ambiguity.
I have suggested "Neither an effect which would cause a new combat, nor extend the existing combat can be used if there is already a pending combat queued." but I am not a native speaker, and it might be put more eloquently without the ambiguity.

Still, Blissful Agony is an effect that ends combat and then does something else after combat. Remember that LSJ email? That's the bit that didn't get written into any general rulings, but if it applies, Blissful Agony surely is covered by such a definition.

So... Can you play a Relentless Reaper after Blissful Agony?
Seems like yes, if the whole LSJ email applies in 2018, even while only parts of it are used for rulings. Or no, if the part about scheduled combats applies to RR.

Bonus: Can you play a Relentless Reaper after Psyche?
I would say no, but Pascal's post disagrees. Not yet an official ruling. Eager to find out the truth, and hopefully at least get a glimpse to the reasoning and the rulings that support it.

++++
CARD TEXTS
++++

Blissful Agony
Cardtype: Combat
Cost: 1 blood
Discipline: Valeren/Animalism
[ani] Strike: hand strike at +1 damage.
[val] Only usable at close range before strikes are chosen. Opposing minion takes 1 unpreventable damage during strike resolution each round this combat when the range is close. A vampire may play only one Blissful Agony at [val] each combat.
[VAL] Strike: combat ends. Choose a minion controlled by a Methuselah other than the opposing vampire's controller. The opposing vampire enters combat with that minion.

Relentless Reaper
Cardtype: Combat
Discipline: Thanatosis/Fortitude
[for] Prevent 1 damage.
[thn] Press.
[THN] Only usable if both combatants are still ready and combat would end. Instead, burn 1 blood to start a new round.

Identical wording as Relentress Reaper, so same ruling would apply.
Telepathic Tracking
Cardtype: Combat
Cost: 1 blood
Discipline: Auspex
[aus] Press, only usable to continue combat. If another round of combat occurs, this vampire gets 1 optional maneuver that round.
[AUS] Only usable {if} both combatants are still ready and combat would end. {Instead,} start a new round{}.

Mentioned as an effect that shedules a combat
Marie-Pierre
Name: 
[LK:2]
Cardtype: Vampire
Clan: Samedi
Group: 6
Capacity: 4
Discipline: for nec THN
Independent: Marie-Pierre can lock after a combat involving another Samedi you control to enter combat with the opposing minion. She cannot block older vampires.

Mentioned as an effect that schedules combat
Fast Reaction
Cardtype: Reaction
Discipline: Auspex
Only usable after a combat between a blocking minion you control other than this vampire and the acting minion.
[aus] Lock this vampire. This vampire enters combat with the acting minion. The first round of this new combat, the acting minion cannot strike.
[AUS] As above, with an optional press.

Mentioned in a relevant ruling:
Rötschreck
Cardtype: Master
Master: out-of-turn. Frenzy.
Put this card on a vampire when an opposing minion attempts to inflict aggravated damage on him or her, whether the damage would be successfully inflicted or not. Combat ends. This vampire is locked and sent to torpor. This vampire does not unlock as normal. During this vampire's next unlock phase, burn this card.

A combat card that schedules a combat:
Psyche!
Cardtype: Combat
Discipline: Celerity
[cel] Press.
[CEL] Only usable at the end of a round when both combatants are still ready and combat is about to end. After this round, begin another combat with the opposing minion.

Logic is for the weak.
Last edit: 19 Dec 2019 10:15 by Nauro.

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19 Dec 2019 15:34 #98306 by kschaefer

Main question (happened two days ago in a casual game) :
After a minion schedules a combat by striking Blissful Agony at superior VAL, can the opposing player play Relentless Reaper at superior THN (assuming there's blood to burn to make use of the effect) to make the scheduled combat void?
Bonus: Can you play a Relentless Reaper after Psyche?

You can play Relentless Reaper. The Relentless Reaper continuation of the current combat prevents the new combat from ever happening.

You cannot play Relentless Reaper in response to Psyche! since the window for playing Psyche! is after the window for playing Relentless Reaper. "is about to end" is later than "would end".

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19 Dec 2019 16:05 #98307 by kombainas
Just to make sure, you are suggesting we have several windows for impulse, one for "is about to end", one for "would end" and also need to check anything at the end of round for "would end" and "is about to end" and have to go asking for that at each and every end multiple times rather than just one clean window just so card X would never precede card Y?

Dunno man, seems excessive and not solving any problems of balance or clarity.

!malk! :OBF: :DEM: :cel: :cap6: Sabbat. If this vampire's bleed is successful, he laughs manicly and untaps.

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19 Dec 2019 16:14 #98308 by Ankha

Main question (happened two days ago in a casual game) :
After a minion schedules a combat by striking Blissful Agony at superior VAL, can the opposing player play Relentless Reaper at superior THN (assuming there's blood to burn to make use of the effect) to make the scheduled combat void?
Bonus: Can you play a Relentless Reaper after Psyche?

You can play Relentless Reaper. The Relentless Reaper continuation of the current combat prevents the new combat from ever happening.

You cannot play Relentless Reaper in response to Psyche! since the window for playing Psyche! is after the window for playing Relentless Reaper. "is about to end" is later than "would end".

Correct on both points.

Here is the general ruling from 2002, combat section:
An effect which would cause (a new) combat cannot be used if there is already a pending combat queued. [RTR 20020501]
Links to groups-beta.google.com/groups?selm=3CD0043D.410398C1%40white-wolf.com

What about that (a new) part? Is it reminder text? It it a clarification?

The rule is that you cannot queue a combat if there's already a combat queued. "(a new)" just means "even if the effect that would cause a combat happens during an already ongoing combat, we're not talking about the same combat".

Does causing combat include both Relentless Reaper and Telepathic Tracking, which technically extend an already existing combat, but could be said to cause more combat?

No. "causing" = "starting" here.

If you read the linked email from LSJ, the line preceding the quoted sentence at the ruling is about interrupting scheduled effects, and it gives equivalence to effects that extend combat (ie RR or TT) and those that shedule a new one (psyche, blissful agony, etc):

If an effect resolves and sets up an effect to be resolved later (e.g.,
Undead Persistence's torpor effect or Siren's Lure's combat), then the
effect will not be canceled by "interruptions" (extending combat/starting
combat/etc.)
.

Be careful, because if a Siren's Lure combat is queued, you cannot play a Psyche! during the first combat (groups.google.com/d/msg/rec.games.trading-cards.jyhad/onifuBHTSbU/HUWYEcDaLDQJ).

The bolded part of the quoted text is what implies the equivalence.

Given this context, we return to the sentence of the ruling, to the question of why "(a new)" is in brackets. If (a new) means a mandatory condition, then it shouldn't be in brackets. We have two interpretations, as the ruling is currently written:

1) If the [RTR 20020501] is meant to cover only effects that schedule a new combat (Psyche, Blissful Agony, Marie-Pierre, Fast Reaction, etc) and their interactions with each other, removing brackets would remove the confusion.

"A new combat" doesn't mean much if there is no ongoing combat (eg. you cannot play Siren's Lure twice).

2) If the [RTR 20020501] covers all similar effects, including Relentless Reaper and Telepathic Tracking, I'd suggest adding an unambiguous addition to the ruling.
Perhaps rewording it into "Neither an effect which would cause a new combat, nor extend the existing combat can be used if there is already a pending combat queued." would work?

It doesn't, so moot.

There is no ruling in General Rulings or Card Rulings for Psyche, Blissful Agony, Telepathic Tracking nor Relentless Reaper that clarifies this case.

But, if you're Relentless enough, you can find a forum post by Pascal Bertrand, when Psyche's window of opportunity was changed:
www.vekn.net/forum/rules-questions/16788#16794
This is in 2011, and there are no rulings mentioning this, nor does the post reference any rulings itself (meaning that according to the tournament rulebook it has no bearing on the rules of the game until it becomes an official ruling - as per 2.1. of Tournament Rules) :

>what happens if the acting minion plays a Psyche, then the reacting plays Telepathic Tracking?

A new round of combat will happen (TT's "combat does not end"). Psyche!'s "start a new combat after this round" effect is lost (as much as Rotschreck's "send that vampire to torpor after combat has ended" is lost)


Is this 2011 post correct?

It is no longer correct. Psyche! and Telepathic Tracking now have different windows. You cannot play Telepathic Tracking once the "would end" window is closed. Psyche! is played in the "about to end" window, which occurs after.
I'll update that topic for easier reference.

That would mean that since Telepathic Tracking can void a scheduled combat by Psyche, it should also be able to void a scheduled combat by Blissful Agony, same with Relentless Reaper.

Moot.

Since the 2011 post talks about "as much as Rotschreck's", we can see that the Rötschreck ruling is in the very same email from LSJ - [RTR 20020501] (linked above) . There, it specifically is said:

Effects that end combat and then do something else after combat (all in the
single resolution of the effect) will fizzle if combat doesn't end or if a
new combat is started.

How can Psyche be beaten by Telepathic Tracking "as much as Rotschreck's" when there's no direct equivalence? Psyche is not an effect that ends combat and does something else after combat. Psyche resolves as it is played, and a new combat is scheduled (caused). Why can TT be played? Is it not covered by the original [RTR 20020501], about causing new combats?

Moot.

If Pascal's post is an active ruling, then general ruling [RTR 20020501] should be updated to not have brackets, as to leave room for Telepathic Tracking and Relentless Reaper (and other future cards with the same effect) to trump over already scheduled combats.
Also, Pascal's ruling of TT trumping Psyche should be included in the general rulings, allowing all combat continuation effects to trump over all new combat scheduling effects. Current rulings on Rötschreck and Psyche do not cover this exact case, unless by huge leaps of logic.

Moot.

If Pascal's 2011 post is not a ruling, but rather a misleading interpretation, then please consider rewording the general ruling about combat [RTR 20020501] to lose the ambiguity.
I have suggested "Neither an effect which would cause a new combat, nor extend the existing combat can be used if there is already a pending combat queued." but I am not a native speaker, and it might be put more eloquently without the ambiguity.

Moot (this is wrong, you can "extend" the combat).

Still, Blissful Agony is an effect that ends combat and then does something else after combat. Remember that LSJ email? That's the bit that didn't get written into any general rulings, but if it applies, Blissful Agony surely is covered by such a definition.

So... Can you play a Relentless Reaper after Blissful Agony?
Seems like yes, if the whole LSJ email applies in 2018, even while only parts of it are used for rulings.

Correct.

Or no, if the part about scheduled combats applies to RR.

Bonus: Can you play a Relentless Reaper after Psyche?
I would say no, but Pascal's post disagrees. Not yet an official ruling. Eager to find out the truth, and hopefully at least get a glimpse to the reasoning and the rulings that support it.

You cannot, it's too late.

Prince of Paris, France
Ratings Coordinator, Rules Director

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20 Dec 2019 09:09 - 20 Dec 2019 09:10 #98313 by PetriWessman
So, for clarity: we have the general rule "you cannot queue a combat if there's already a combat queued".

So, Blissful Agony does not count as a queued combat, since it first ends combat and then does X (where X happens to be new combat)? Because of this, you can apparently play Relentless Reaper, Psyche!, Telepathic Tracking etc to continue combat or start a new combat (which cancels BA's combat).

Siren's Lure *does* count as a queued combat, so you cannot play Reaper, Psyche, Telepathic Tracking etc after it has been played? Or are some of those legal play and some not?

I find this whole thing extremely confusing and hard to understand, tbh. :(

Some clear, unambiguous explanation of this would be very welcome.
Last edit: 20 Dec 2019 09:10 by PetriWessman.
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20 Dec 2019 13:08 - 21 Dec 2019 20:38 #98317 by Ankha

So, for clarity: we have the general rule "you cannot queue a combat if there's already a combat queued".

Correct.

So, Blissful Agony does not count as a queued combat, since it first ends combat and then does X (where X happens to be new combat)?

Blissful Agony DOES queue a combat, after the current combat ends, if nothing interrupts it.

Because of this, you can apparently play Relentless Reaper, Psyche!, Telepathic Tracking etc to continue combat or start a new combat (which cancels BA's combat).

Relentless Reaper, Telepathic Tracking and Psyche! interrupts the effect of Blissful Agony.
EDIT: you cannot play Psyche! because Blissful Agony's combat is a lingering effect, not something happening in the "resolution of the effect" (see below).
Since BA already queues a combat, Psyche! cannot queue a combat.
groups.google.com/d/msg/rec.games.trading-cards.jyhad/GZI8NXQ76d0/cNf4G7ZGl1MJ

Siren's Lure *does* count as a queued combat

Correct.

, so you cannot play Reaper, Psyche, Telepathic Tracking etc after it has been played?

No, only Psyche! is forbidden. RR and TT don't queue any combat.

To sum it up:
  • A combat cannot be queued if there is already a combat queued.
  • Effects that end combat and then do something else after combat (all in the single resolution of the effect) will fizzle if combat doesn't end or if a new combat is started.
  • Telepathic Tracking and Relentless Reaper replaces the end of a combat by a new round, so they don't count as "queuing up a new combat": they can be played if a Siren's Lure has queued a combat.
  • Psyche! is played when the combat is about to end to queue a new combat. It cannot be played if another combat is already queued (eg., Siren's Lure, Blissful Agony).
  • Telepathic Tracking and Relentless Reaper are played before Psyche! could be played, and since the combat is no longer ending, Psyche! cannot be played.

Prince of Paris, France
Ratings Coordinator, Rules Director
Last edit: 21 Dec 2019 20:38 by Ankha.
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