Rules and Assumptions

Looking for a clarification on what something in one of our puzzles means, or some general puzzle info? Read on.

Winning

Unless otherwise stated, you must win the puzzle by inflicting lethal damage to your opponent before the turn ends. This can be as late as during the end step if necessary. Your solution must work for all possible outcomes, such as your opponent’s actions and blocking decisions (see below.)

Phase

Unless otherwise stated, you begin each puzzle at the beginning of your first main phase. You have already drawn a card and gone past upkeep triggers. You have not yet played a land, activated loyalty abilities of Planeswalkers you control, or attacked.

Your Opponent’s Resources / Actions

Unless otherwise stated, your opponent has no cards in hand and no other permanents in play (including no lands – despite the lack of realism there.) This means the only actions you need to consider are activated abilities with no mana cost. Most puzzles with opponent actions will offer more information on this.

Blocking

You cannot assume that your opponent will block a certain way, unless they are somehow forced to. Your solution must satisfy all possible blocking scenarios and always deal lethal in order to be correct.

Dice

Sometimes you will see six-sided dice placed on cards. These are meant to indicate counters, of whatever type is most reasonable to be there. On most creatures they will be +1/+1 counters, on most artifacts and lands they will be charge counters, and on most Planeswalkers they will be loyalty counters. 
If the card specifies a type of counter itself, however (like Icatian Javelineers or Raging Ravine), that will dictate which type it is. 
For -1/-1 counters, we will use a separate graphic to avoid confusion.

Zones

Unless otherwise stated, all zones not displayed are empty. Neither you nor your opponent have cards in graveyards or in exile.

Your Library

In any puzzle in which you are able to draw cards or otherwise access your library, the puzzle will stipulate some known or assumed information about the library. Most commonly, this will be an assumption that the remaining cards in your library are all some type of land, but occasionally some number of top cards may be known or visible.

Your Life

Occasionally, your own life total might appear to matter – for cards like Anguished Unmaking, for example. If we require you to consider your own life total in a puzzle, it will be displayed. If your life total is not shown, you may assume it is irrelevant and effectively infinite.

Submission Rules

For competitive-level Patrons, you may submit only one answer each week. Any subsequent submissions will be automatically deleted, and you will not be able to edit it after it has been submitted.

Answer Marking

Answer submissions must be clear and easy to follow. If it does not seem obvious to us what you are trying to communicate, your answer may be judged as incorrect. We will make our best efforts to understand your steps and give you the benefit of the doubt whenever possible. Anything clear and incorrect, even an innocent slip-up like mis-counting power, will be judged as incorrect.

Puzzlebreakers

If you manage to deal more damage than the puzzle asks for, this is called a Puzzlebreaker solution, and you’ll earn a 2x point multiplier and may also be entitled to a prize. However be careful when submitting these, as if it is found not to work, you will only receive participation points for that week – even if you had the regular solution correct as part of it. (I.e. If you did everything right but think you attacked for 10, but miscalculated it and it’s actually 9, your answer will be judged as incorrect.)

Still unclear?

Send us an email at mtgpuzzles@gmail.com.