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KO, Prep, Invulnerability, and Fielding

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This has been a big debate on the forums for the game on BGG and I wanted to put this out there in hopes of settling it.

The questions is this: The FAQ clarifies fielding as something that happens whenever the character moves to the field from another area, excluding the attack zone, which would trigger "When fielded" effects.

So, does the basic action Invulnerability trigger the same effects?

The debate has gone into a long, circular argument about what constitutes fielding, what triggers "when fielded" abilities, and how moving a die from prep to the field is the same as fielding.

Still, the answer is most definitely no, and the reason is because the discussion has centered around the wrong idea and the wrong rules. The why of it is on page six of the rules.


Page six, under "Assign Damage," the following line is found:

"When a character is knocked out, move it to that player's prep area."

Let's review the text of Invulnerability:

"Your attacking characters that are knocked out (this turn) return to the field."

When this action is in effect, it replaces the text from page six. The dice return field, just as blocked-but-not-ko'd-dice do, instead of going to prep.

The issue that's leading to the controversy around this stems from a misunderstanding of the difference between being KO'd and going where you go when you're KO'd. The mistaken thought is that the process is that the die is KO'd, and so it is in prep, and now Invulnerability returns it to the field. This implies that the state of being knocked out is simultaneous with jumping to prep, when that's clearly not the case since the rules describe it as a two-step process. Therefore, Invulnerability diverts the die - it never goes to prep in the first place.

The argument against this is saying that if the card meant this, it should say "characters that would be knocked out...", but that doesn't enter into it because of the rules that we see above.

In short, being knocked out is a die state that is independent of where it is on the board. It is the status of being knocked out (or not) that determines what you do next.

Normal Turn:

Die takes damage -> Die is in a KO'd state -> Player moves die to prep

With Invulnerability:

Die takes damage -> Die is KO'd state -> Player moves die to field.
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  1. David Newsom imported's Avatar
    I don't know how this is a debate. "Fielding" a character means paying its fielding cost (even if its zero). Anything else that puts something in the field is not "fielding".
  2. Dave imported's Avatar
    There are two parts to that. First, people kept debating what fielding meant rather than the more relevant rule from page six cited above. Second, the FAQ, on page three and four, would seem to expand what constitutes "fielding":

    "When fielded” effects trigger at the time that a player moves that character into their Field Zone. In most instances, this occurs when a player pays a character’s fielding cost and moves the character from their Reserve Pool to their Field Zone.

    "Some game effects will allow characters to be fielded in a more non-traditional fashion—such as Gambit Le Diable Blanc. If a character would be fielded from Gambit Le Diable Blanc’s ability, any “when fielded” effects on those characters would trigger."

    This is obviously broader and potentially opens the door for something like "Rally" to be considered fielding of those sidekicks. WK is going to need to address this again to describe the scope of these non-traditional means.
  3. LiveLifeForSuccess imported's Avatar
    Page 20 of the rules clearly states that fielding of a character die takes place the moment this die goes from the reserve pool to the field zone.

    It wouldn't matter where a die went when it was KO'd unless they returned to the reserve pool which isn't the case.
  4. Dave imported's Avatar
    FAQ page 3-4 expands upon this. It allows for more cases where fielding abilities are triggered. That info also doesn't enter into it because Invulnerability doesn't modify the rules on page 20, it modifies the rules on page six. You can see the text of this in my reply to the other comment.
  5. Trevor Roberts imported's Avatar
    My group (along with those playing on vassal) has always treated the KO'd area as part of the Prep AND Field, only during the clean up do they move to prep area or in the case of inv. stay as fielded characters. (once in the prep they are no longer a character just a dice, similar to used area)

    Also any time the term "move" is used we treat that differently then "field" and/or "KO"

    Preventing KO as Invulnerability does has no effect on moving characters (ie storm) as this is a different mechanic.

  6. Dave imported's Avatar
    Totally with you, Trevor. WK needs to better define what the KO area is (they currently don't define it at ALL in the rulebook) and I'll be talking about that soon.