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Thread: Beholder Master Abberation - how immediate is immediately?

  1. #1

    Beholder Master Abberation - how immediate is immediately?

    Beholder Master Abberation says:
    If this is the first die assigned to attack this turn, you may immediately use each of the basic action dice abilities, without bursts, once, as if you had rolled those dice.
    My question is, how immediate is immediately? Specifically, does this happen before or after the rest of the attackers are assigned? There seems to be some disagreement about this on the forums here.

    These two threads seem to come out with the view that first you assign all attackers, then you resolve all effects from attacking, including Beholder's:
    http://www.thereservepool.com/thread...ph-other-cards (post 15 and up)
    http://www.thereservepool.com/thread...Enraged-Action (post 4)

    These two threads seem to be arguing that you declare Beholder, then resolve the actions (immediately), then you declare the rest of the attackers:
    http://www.thereservepool.com/thread...ter-Abberation (posts 7 and 8)
    http://www.thereservepool.com/thread...-Step-Question (post 2)

    The answer here has impacts on many other interaction questions I have, so I thought I would start with trying to nail down an answer to this one. Thanks!

  2. #2
    Beholder is the only character (so far) that mentions order of being assigned to attack. I believe the reason is because normally, "when X attacks" abilities are per die, and this is clearly meant to only happen once regardless of how many Beholder dice attack.

    The rulebook is pretty clear about the order of the Attack Step. You assign all attackers, and then resolve all "When attacks" effects.

  3. #3
    Thanks for the response! If I an understanding your position properly, the "immediately" is part of the effect, and the effect as a whole isn't triggered until after all attackers are assigned, and so "immediately" does not interrupt the attack assignment process? Is that right?

    If that is the case, let me follow up. All "when attacks" effects resolve simultaneously. The "immediately" word is part of the effect, and so would not change that. When things happen simultaneously, the current player chooses the order. So if I assign Beholder and Storm: Goddess of the Plains ("When Storm attacks, reroll each of your opponent's characters. Place any die that does not result in a character in your opponent's prep area") to attack, both of their effects would resolve simultaneously. So, as the current player, I could choose to resolve Storm's effect first, then resolve the Beholder's effect. Does this sound right to you?

  4. #4
    That sounds correct to me. I could also see an interpretation that "immediately" means that it must be the first effect you resolve, if multiple are simultaneous, but if I were the rule on it I would say your understanding is likely correct based on the rules as we know them.

  5. #5
    I figure that either "immediately" is part of the effect, and thus subject to the normal timing rules (which include both the fact that all attackers are assigned before resolving any effects and the ability to choose the order of simultaneous effects), or it is meant to alter the normal timing rules of when we apply the effect (in which case, it should be able to resolve before assigning the remaining attackers). Personally I'd be fine with either, it just seems inconsistent to say that you have to wait to resolve the "immediately" part because of timing rules, but then to say that the "immediately" means you can ignore the timing rules for resolving simultaneous effects.

  6. #6
    Yeah, it's a really weird word to put in without context.

  7. #7
    I believe that the use of the word "immediately" is to signify that the basic actions granted to the active player by Beholder happen when you "resolve effects that occur when attacking," rather than during the "use action dice" part of the attack step.

    ATTACK STEP
    Select attackers. Resolve effects that occur due to attacking. Beholder uses the actions here. thus immediately
    Assign blockers. Resolve effects that occur due to blocking.
    Use action dice. Beholder may not use the actions at this time... sorry. too late. should have used them immediately
    Both player can use global abilities.
    Assign and resolve damage. Resolve effects that occur due to damage or knock out.

    Is this how everyone else is playing it?

  8. #8
    Thanks for the reply, CapoBro! That makes sense to me, and makes this view much more reasonable.

    I think it really comes down to how you read the card. It can be either:

    If this is the first die assigned to attack this turn, you may immediately use each of the basic action dice abilities, without bursts, once, as if you had rolled those dice.
    in which case, the effect is resolved as normal, after all attackers have been assigned, in the order chosen by the current player, and the effect is telling you to use the actions immediately, before blockers are assigned; or:

    If this is the first die assigned to attack this turn, you may immediately use each of the basic action dice abilities, without bursts, once, as if you had rolled those dice.
    in which case, the word "immediately" is changing the normal timing rules, allowing you to use this effect as soon as Beholder is assigned to attack, before any other attackers are assigned. I think this would work within the rules, since card rules always supersede rule book rules, and this would be a case of the card superseding the normal timing of resolving effects after assigning all attackers.

    I personally like the first interpretation better, but I could see either way.

  9. #9
    @CapoBro - good catch, I agree with you 100%.

  10. #10
    Fantastic, we seem to have a general consensus. Next related question:

    I assign Beholder and a Storm: Goddess of the Plains to attack. I have a Black Widow: Tsarina die in my used pile, and Polymorph is one of the 4 BACs. When I trigger Beholder's ability (which would be after Storm is assigned to attack), I polymorph Storm and swap it with Black Widow. Black Widow was never assigned to attack, but that die (the one that was a Storm but was changed into Black Widow) has not yet resolved it's "when attacking" effect. Who's "when attacks" effect triggers, Storm's or Black Widow's?

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by dwilhelmi View Post
    Fantastic, we seem to have a general consensus. Next related question:

    I assign Beholder and a Storm: Goddess of the Plains to attack. I have a Black Widow: Tsarina die in my used pile, and Polymorph is one of the 4 BACs. When I trigger Beholder's ability (which would be after Storm is assigned to attack), I polymorph Storm and swap it with Black Widow. Black Widow was never assigned to attack, but that die (the one that was a Storm but was changed into Black Widow) has not yet resolved it's "when attacking" effect. Who's "when attacks" effect triggers, Storm's or Black Widow's?
    I would say you still resolve Storm's ability since she was assigned to attack, and Black Widow does nothing and is not attacking. The time to declare her as an attacker has passed, she is in the field, but not attacking.

  12. #12
    You can Polymorph attacking Storm for Attacking Black Widow and she will remain attacking (remember though, blockers haven't been declared yet). You would resolve Storm's ability, but not Black Widow's. IMO at least.

  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by CapoBro View Post
    I believe that the use of the word "immediately" is to signify that the basic actions granted to the active player by Beholder happen when you "resolve effects that occur when attacking," rather than during the "use action dice" part of the attack step.

    ATTACK STEP
    Select attackers. Resolve effects that occur due to attacking. Beholder uses the actions here. thus immediately
    Assign blockers. Resolve effects that occur due to blocking.
    Use action dice. Beholder may not use the actions at this time... sorry. too late. should have used them immediately
    Both player can use global abilities.
    Assign and resolve damage. Resolve effects that occur due to damage or knock out.
    While I can understand how it could be read this way - I dont think we are looking at other examples of cards (with in set) that resolve at the end of assign attackers step

    Examples of cards that have effects are resolved due to attacking (from with in set)
    (and so on)

    Now these all use the words, when assigned to attack, so they would resolve at the end of Select attackers set

    Now with Beholder saying immediately, it appears to me, that at least looking with in set, it is meant to interrupt the assign attackers step to resolve it's effect

    Which means, (as a follow up) that you would be assigning black widow to attack and not storm so you would resolve Black widows when attacking trigger

  14. #14
    I was under the impression that "when assigned to attack" was synonymous with "when attacks", so that wording wouldn't really change what "immediately" means. Basically, all "when attacks" or "when assigned to attack" effects all resolve at the end of the select attackers phase, and always has, so it still comes down to whether the word "immediately" is read as being a part of the effect or changing the rules on when the effect is triggered.

  15. #15
    I was just using cards from with in set (for consistent wording, but yes "when attacks" and when "when assigned to attack" are the same)


    If this is the first die assigned to attack this turn, you may immediately use each of the basic action dice abilities, without bursts, once, as if you had rolled those dice.
    If this is the first die assigned to attack this turn - Conditional Trigger - It must be the first die assigned to attack, and it resolves at the end of the assign attackers step
    you may use each of the basic action dice abilities, without bursts, once, as if you had rolled those dice - Effect

    So with out the word immediately - the timing doesn't change. Why place a long word on a card, when you have limited space

    Now lets use the common as the break between the trigger and the effect

    If this is the first die assigned to attack this turn, you may immediately use each of the basic action dice abilities, without bursts, once, as if you had rolled those dice.

    If this is the first die assigned to attack this turn - Conditional Trigger - It must be the first die assigned to attack
    you may immediately use each of the basic action dice abilities, without bursts, once, as if you had rolled those dice. - When to resolve the effect, and what effect to resolve

    So based on steps listed, with out the word immediately, beholder is already using the basic action cards effects at the end of the assign attackers phase, because that is "when attacking" effects are resolved. So unless Wizkids wasted 11 letters with in limited space, it has to be timing.

  16. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by Bestia View Post
    beholder is already using the basic action cards effects at the end of the assign attackers phase, because that is "when attacking" effects are resolved
    Except that his ability being resolved simply grants you the use of those actions as if you had rolled those dice. If you had rolled those dice, they would need to be used after blockers are assigned. So his effect would be resolved at the end of the assign attackers phase, and his effect grants you one use of each die after blockers have been assigned. If that is the case, then the word "immediately" does serve a purpose within the effect, as it specifies that you use those actions before blockers are assigned.

  17. #17
    Bestia, I think the Dracolich is an example of why they used the term "immediately" is necessary to indicate that the actions are spent during the when attacks effects are resolved. The action dice that Dracolich allows the active player to place in his reserve pool can't be used until after blockers are assigned and their blocking effects resolve.

  18. #18
    For the record, this effect is highly contentious to this very day.

    I still hold that the wording on Beholder means that you resolve his effect before you assign the rest of your characters, allowing you also attack with characters brought onto the field by the BAC's. Most would tell you that "when attacking" abilities trigger after all characters have been assigned to attack as per the rules, but this is a case of "Card text trumps rules." Beholder quite explicitly states that it triggers when it is the first character assigned to attack during your turn (meaning that there must be order applied to how you're assigning characters to attack) and that it then triggers "immediately".

    That doesn't leave a lot of room for interpretation in my mind, but as you can see, WizKids isn't the best at wording yet so people will still argue this point. Things are constantly looking up, but we're still not at an acceptable level for their wordings.

  19. #19

  20. #20
    Quote Originally Posted by Necromanticer View Post
    Beholder quite explicitly states that it triggers when it is the first character assigned to attack during your turn (meaning that there must be order applied to how you're assigning characters to attack) and that it then triggers "immediately".

    So, Necromanticer, you would hold that the word "immediately" is not a part of the effect to be resolved, but instead modifies the rules on when the effect is resolved? If that is the case, then this is the text of the effect that we are resolving as soon as Beholder is assigned:
    use each of the basic action dice abilities, without bursts, once, as if you had rolled those dice.
    If we resolve this right away, we see we are granted the use of each BAC, as if we had rolled them. If we had rolled them, then we couldn't actually use those actions until after blockers are assigned. Since "immediately" is not a part of the wording of the effect, we can't use that to change this. So you are immediately granted the ability to use each BAC, when you would normally be able to use them - after blockers are assigned.

    It seems to make more sense that the word "immediately" is there to tell you to use those actions as soon as the effect is resolved, before blockers are assigned. It seems incorrect to say that "immediately" applies both to when the effect is triggered and is also a part of the effect to modify what happens in the effect.

  21. #21
    Quote Originally Posted by dwilhelmi View Post
    So, Necromanticer, you would hold that the word "immediately" is not a part of the effect to be resolved, but instead modifies the rules on when the effect is resolved?
    Yes.

    Quote Originally Posted by dwilhelmi View Post
    If we resolve this right away, we see we are granted the use of each BAC, ["as if we had rolled them"]. If we had rolled them, then we couldn't actually use those actions until after blockers are assigned. Since "immediately" is not a part of the wording of the effect, we can't use that to change this. So you are immediately granted the ability to use each BAC, when you would normally be able to use them - after blockers are assigned.
    You're making the assumption that "immediately" suddenly stops applying as soon as you have read it. In order to use the abilities "immediately," you must use them right then. The text at the end is explaining how this works and explaining how the effect interacts with dice that would stay on the field after use such as Spellbinding Circle or Imprisoned.

    Quote Originally Posted by dwilhelmi View Post
    It seems to make more sense that the word "immediately" is there to tell you to use those actions as soon as the effect is resolved, before blockers are assigned. It seems incorrect to say that "immediately" applies both to when the effect is triggered and is also a part of the effect to modify what happens in the effect.
    Your interpretation is your prerogative, but I fundamentally disagree. When you have an ability that so clearly breaks the mold of this style of ability, it's silly to warp and twist it so that it fits into the same nice little box as other "when attacking" abilities. Play the ability the way it's worded until we get confirmation otherwise or a ruling on a similar effect (though none currently exist). Other than that, what can we really do?

  22. #22
    Quote Originally Posted by Necromanticer View Post
    In order to use the abilities "immediately," you must use them right then.
    You seem to be duplicating your use of that word, though. You immediately resolve the effect to immediately use the abilities. As an example, lets pull out the effect text and make it more generic:
    If this is the first die assigned to attack this turn, you may immediately resolve this card's effect
    in which case, the effect of the card would be:
    use each of the basic action dice abilities, without bursts, once, as if you had rolled those dice.
    in which case, you are not supposed to immediately use the actions, as the effect does not tell you to do that.

    On the other hand, you could look at it like this:
    If this is the first die assigned to attack this turn, you may resolve this card's effect
    in which case, the effect of the card would be:
    immediately use each of the basic action dice abilities, without bursts, once, as if you had rolled those dice.
    in which case, the resolving of the effect happens at the normal time.

    With your interpretation, it would shake out like this:
    If this is the first die assigned to attack this turn, you may immediately resolve this card's effect
    in which case, the effect of the card would be:
    immediately use each of the basic action dice abilities, without bursts, once, as if you had rolled those dice.
    in which case, the word immediately is duplicated.

    So I am not making the assumption that "immediately" suddenly stops applying as soon as I have read it, but am instead assuming that "immediately" doesn't mean two different things at the same time. After I have read "immediately" it still applies to one thing, either when we resolve the effect, or when we use the actions, but not both.

    Quote Originally Posted by Necromanticer View Post
    Play the ability the way it's worded until we get confirmation otherwise or a ruling on a similar effect
    I am trying to play it the way it's worded, I just don't think it is worded as clearly as you think it is.

  23. #23
    Quote Originally Posted by dwilhelmi View Post
    You seem to be duplicating your use of that word, though. You immediately resolve the effect to immediately use the abilities. As an example, lets pull out the effect text and make it more generic:

    in which case, the effect of the card would be:

    in which case, you are not supposed to immediately use the actions, as the effect does not tell you to do that.

    On the other hand, you could look at it like this:

    in which case, the effect of the card would be:

    in which case, the resolving of the effect happens at the normal time.

    With your interpretation, it would shake out like this:

    in which case, the effect of the card would be:

    in which case, the word immediately is duplicated.

    So I am not making the assumption that "immediately" suddenly stops applying as soon as I have read it, but am instead assuming that "immediately" doesn't mean two different things at the same time. After I have read "immediately" it still applies to one thing, either when we resolve the effect, or when we use the actions, but not both.


    I am trying to play it the way it's worded, I just don't think it is worded as clearly as you think it is.
    For all the semantics being batted around in the 1, 2, 3... 7 different ways you wrote out the effect, you're still ignoring the underlying problem. The word "immediately" is explicitly describing the timing window in which the ability should resolve. There are no abilities that I know of that trigger and wait around to be resolved unless they are effectively "in the queue" with other abilities that triggered simultaneously or those that are specifically worded as such (like Experience). You're arguing that the unique timing window the ability describes should instead follow standard timing window that most abilities follow, but if that was the case, it would be worded as such with a simple bit of reminder text that this effect would only proc once no matter how many dice attack such as the wording on Angel - Inspiring. They're not reinventing the wheel for no reason...

    The fact that WizKids explicitly outlined a specific timing window for the ability means that we should use that timing window for the ability (without going into needlessly duplicating the word immediately). The last bit of the text simply describes the manner in which you use the ability and functions within the timing window already outlined.

    I can understand the discomfort that having these eccentric and foreign effects can have when you're trying to understand and incorporate your knowledge of so many other effects, but you have to read what's written. I really don't think it could get any more clear with how it's written and still have room to fit the rest of the text. The effect is point blank telling you to do something immediately and you're trying to push that off and work it into the already established schedule for these things. It just doesn't work that way.

  24. #24
    I think I see where you may be tripping up on this, @dwilhelmi .

    Resolving the effect and using the BAC abilities are not two separate things.

    They are one and the same.

    The effect is "use each of the basic action dice abilities" and you resolve that effect "immediately".

    As @Necromanticer is saying, as soon as you assign the Beholder to be the first attacker, then the card text creates a non-standard timing window in which the BAC abilities are used, there and then, before anything else can occur.

  25. #25
    The thing is, I'm not necessarily against this interpretation - I actually originally viewed it that way, and would overall prefer it that way. I'm just not convinced, having heard some of the other viewpoints presented in this thread, that "The word 'immediately' is explicitly describing the timing window in which the ability should resolve". If it were so explicit, would there be any controversy over it? There is ambiguity in the wording, in whether "immediately" is describing the timing window, or clarifying when the actions are used. (And believe it or not, people can hold to the other interpretation for other reasons than they are uncomfortable with "eccentric and foreign effects")

    If the word "immediately" was not there, the card would read:
    If this is the first die assigned to attack this turn, you may use each of the basic action dice abilities, without bursts, once, as if you had rolled those dice.
    how would you interpret this? Would you use each BAC, after all attackers are assigned, but before blockers are assigned? I'm not sure I would, because actions are used after blockers are assigned, and this ability is simply granting you the use of each action - it doesn't appear to change when those actions can be used. This is the reasoning why some interpret the "immediately" to apply to when the actions are used. Does that make sense?

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