- Alpha Quadrant
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#559294
Based on this post, I started thinking about formalizing the action structure in 1E, and realized that I lack sufficient clarity to so. Here are 21 questions that I hope would add to that clarity.
  1. "That was cool" so I score 5 points, giving me enough points to win the game. But the opponent wishes to play Khan! to nullify those points. Do I win the game before they can play Khan!?
  2. I attempt to play a card from my hand. Thanks to Manheim's Dimensional Door and other shenanigans, my opponent plays Masaka Transformations on me before costs are paid for playing the card. What happens to the card I was to play? Where is it? What if this occurs after costs are paid?
  3. My opponent plays Energy Vortex on my ship I am using to report with crew. If I play another copy of the same ship, can I still report with crew? What about a different ship?
  4. I am attempting a special download, but through some string events (including say Martok Founder into Treacherous Advice), I am not able to place a card on Containment Field. Is that special download "used"? Most generally, if it comes time to pay costs for an action, and you thought you could but can't, are you obligated to pay as many as possible?
  5. I am playing Hidden Fighter during the opponent's turn, I am supposed to discard cards toward the opponent's 211th Rule of Acquisition. While discarding cards to 211th Rule of Acquisition, the opponent gives some Treacherous Advice (again with Martok Founder). Do cards discarded this way satisfy 211th Rule of Acquisition? More generally, if something happens while paying costs for an action, do those somethings count toward the cost even if they did not necessarily occur explicitly to pay the cost?
  6. I suspend play with Q the Referee to download a [Ref] card. Why can't I use that same Q the Referee to download another [Ref] card before it is discarded (and repeat ad nauseam)?
  7. My opponent plays an event, and I play Kevin Uxbridge to nullify it, is that event still considered "just played"? If so, may I play another Kevin Uxbridge to nullify the event "again" (in much the same way you can play multiple non-cumulative effects on the game target; they just don't do anything)?
  8. I play Countermanda in response to an opponent's Palor Toff - Alien Trader. Furious, they nullify their own Palor Toff - Alien Trader before my Countermanda resolves (say with Gint downloading 47th Rule of Acquisition). Does my Countermanda still take effect? More generally, if an action responds to a pending effect and that effect is nullified, is the currently pending responding action cancelled?
  9. I play We Are the Borg (or Bajoran Civil War, etc.) for its download function, but the opponent reveals Computer Crash. Am I obligated to play We Are the Borg for its table function?
  10. If I draw cards during a report with crew, am I allowed to report the cards I draw with the report with crew, if applicable? In another scenario, I start drawing cards with Sherlock Holmes, but the opponent plays Subspace Schism, reducing the total number of cards in their hand; do I still draw up to the original number? More generally, if there is a group action where an action is "unlimited" (Red Alert, report with crew, Sherlock Holmes, etc.), is the number of times the subaction is to be performed determined or chosen a priori or do you just keep doing it until you are blue in the cards?
  11. I score a hit during battle with my I.K.S. Pagh and intend to use Officer Exchange Program to score 5 points. But my opponent has Polarized Hull Plating to nullify the damage marker. Who wins out here? There are several considerations here. Who acts first? Does it matter who initiated battle? If I act first, can the opponent nullify my points with Polarized Hull Plating?
  12. My ship is about to be destroyed during a Borg Ship battle. I play The Needs of the Many... to nullify Borg Ship. Is my ship still destroyed? More pointedly, why would removing a "ship" from battle after the battle results been determined affect the results? Or more generally, does removing all ships (or for Q's sake, "ships") from one side of the battle automatically end the battle... even as the results are being played out?
  13. Back to The Needs of the Many.... This interrupt can't be played until a ship is about to be destroyed. So if I encounter a dilemma and fail a condition that results in my ship being destroyed but play The Needs of the Many... is my crew or away team stopped? If that dilemma is "God" does that change the situation? More generally, what does it mean to nullify a card after its results are "set in motion"?
  14. My opponent starts a download, but I reveal Computer Crash, they try to use a special download in response, but I tell them the glossary says they can't because Computer Crash is special. So instead, they play Quinn to nullify Computer Crash, but I play my Quinn to nullify their Quinn. In response, they try to use the special download again. Can they?
    More directly, does the anteroactive nature of Computer Crash (because, again, it's special) apply to all derivative responses of Computer Crash?
  15. Why is Computer Crash special (other than because the glossary says so)? For a more concrete question, does Containment Field apply anteroactively as well? For instance, if I respond to Containment Field being revealed with a special download, am I obligated to place a card on Containment Field?
  16. I attack my opponent at a homeworld. They use Q the Referee to download Strategema in an attempt to cancel the battle. I claim that it is too late for Strategema to prevent the battle; am I correct?
  17. I play Crosis. In response, my opponent plays Assimilate This!, I nullify it with Amanda Rogers. Moving to their next best response, they want to play Amanda Rogers. However, since Amanda Rogers is a "just" action whereas Assimilate This! is not, it is too late to play Amanda Rogers?
  18. How does Quite a Coincidence *really* work? Notably, it plays "on" a personnel indicating the personnel play reached the "results" step. On the other hand, most "just played" cards (e.g. Quinn, Amanda Rogers, etc.) occur during responses. "Quite a Coincidence"; isn't it?
  19. I attempt to play a card during my opponent's turn but my opponent has 211th Rule of Acquisition on a Ferengi Trading Post. Before I pay the costs to play my card, additional waiters show up on the trading post (say by Miles' Near Warp Transport occurring in response to paying another cost), am I obligated to discard more cards? More generally, are costs for an action ever "locked in"? If so, when?
  20. My opponent plays Wall of Ships to download an Enterprise. I want to reveal Computer Crash. Since the resolution of Wall of Ships consists of several subactions (e.g. downloading a ship then discarding the event), why can't I wait until the resolution of Wall of Ships to reveal Computer Crash? In which case, does Computer Crash still apply retroactively to the initiation of Wall of Ships?
  21. When does effects that "play a card" require a normal card play? For instance, Energy Vortex appears to require the opponent to use appropriate resources (e.g. a normal card play). However, cards like The Office of Dixon Hill and Organ Theft seem to be that the cards played don't use a normal card play. Further, if I play a card with my normal card play and you use Energy Vortex, isn't may normal card play "used" at that point? Maybe this question really is: Is the glossary entry for Energy Vortex accurate?
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#559298
Ooh, my kind of quiz! :)

(Disclaimer: answering these off the cuff with little/no research. I look forward to finding out how many I got wrong. :) )
FranklinKenter wrote: Fri Aug 06, 2021 6:37 pm [*]"That was cool" so I score 5 points, giving me enough points to win the game. But the opponent wishes to play Khan! to nullify those points. Do I win the game before they can play Khan!?
Yes, because Khan plays just *after*. So you've scored the points and now you won.
[*]I attempt to play a card from my hand. Thanks to Manheim's Dimensional Door and other shenanigans, my opponent plays Masaka Transformations on me before costs are paid for playing the card. What happens to the card I was to play? Where is it? What if this occurs after costs are paid?
Manheim sets up a suspend play, and if a suspends play makes the original action invalid, I believe it makes the whole action invalid. The card you were to play goes under the deck with the rest, thus you can't play it. I believe you get your costs back.

(Alternate answer: by preventing you from playing the card that they need you to play so that they can show the matching card to trigger door, your opponent has created a paradox and broken the universe; and 1E has a long standing rule that breaking the universe causes you to lose the game. :D )
[*]My opponent plays Energy Vortex on my ship I am using to report with crew. If I play another copy of the same ship, can I still report with crew? What about a different ship?
Energy Vortex says "different", which the game now defines as "neither copies of each other, nor versions of the same persona". So you can't do the former. You can play a different ship.
[*]I am attempting a special download, but through some string events (including say Martok Founder into Treacherous Advice), I am not able to place a card on Containment Field. Is that special download "used"? Most generally, if it comes time to pay costs for an action, and you thought you could but can't, are you obligated to pay as many as possible?
Containment Field says "first", so once reality unwinds, if you can't place the card you can't trigger the download, action invalid. I'd say that if you can't pay the full cost, you can't do the action and don't pay *any* of the cost.
[*]I am playing Hidden Fighter during the opponent's turn, I am supposed to discard cards toward the opponent's 211th Rule of Acquisition. While discarding cards to 211th Rule of Acquisition, the opponent gives some Treacherous Advice (again with Martok Founder). Do cards discarded this way satisfy 211th Rule of Acquisition? More generally, if something happens while paying costs for an action, do those somethings count toward the cost even if they did not necessarily occur explicitly to pay the cost?
Nope. Just because you normally write checks to your landlord, writing a check to me doesn't count as paying your rent.
[*]I suspend play with Q the Referee to download a [Ref] card. Why can't I use that same Q the Referee to download another [Ref] card before it is discarded (and repeat ad nauseam)?
I know the "correct" answer is that because discarding the incident is part of the effect, you can only discard it once. (As opposed to Magic, where these sorts of shenanigans are explicitly legal and encouraged). But I think this is a "because Decipher said so" answer, and that card should probably say "You may discard to suspend play".
[*]My opponent plays an event, and I play Kevin Uxbridge to nullify it, is that event still considered "just played"? If so, may I play another Kevin Uxbridge to nullify the event "again" (in much the same way you can play multiple non-cumulative effects on the game target; they just don't do anything)?
Can't think of a reason why you couldn't. And I can even think of a reason you would want to - if you've got 2 Kevins in hand and I have a Q2, you can't win the counter war, but you *can* just re-Kevin the original Event.

(aside: I shoulda kept count from the beginning, but now I'm real curious to see how many of these weird questions are PAQ cards... )
[*]I play Countermanda in response to an opponent's Palor Toff - Alien Trader. Furious, they nullify their own Palor Toff - Alien Trader before my Countermanda resolves (say with Gint downloading 47th Rule of Acquisition). Does my Countermanda still take effect? More generally, if an action responds to a pending effect and that effect is nullified, is the currently pending responding action cancelled?
I'd say yes, since Amanda triggers on "just played", and nullifying it doesn't mean you didn't play it.
[*]I play We Are the Borg (or Bajoran Civil War, etc.) for its download function, but the opponent reveals Computer Crash. Am I obligated to play We Are the Borg for its table function?
Nope. Looked this one up to be sure: you declare the function at initiation. If it gets stuffed, then it's invalid.
[*]If I draw cards during a report with crew, am I allowed to report the cards I draw with the report with crew, if applicable? In another scenario, I start drawing cards with Sherlock Holmes, but the opponent plays Subspace Schism, reducing the total number of cards in their hand; do I still draw up to the original number? More generally, if there is a group action where an action is "unlimited" (Red Alert, report with crew, Sherlock Holmes, etc.), is the number of times the subaction is to be performed determined or chosen a priori or do you just keep doing it until you are blue in the cards?
I don't think you can, because your action is "I'm reporting this pile of people using report with crew". The "subaction" piece is that your opponent can respond to each card (Energy Vortex or Dimensional Door), and is just a bit of book-keeping so there's no confusion about what's happening to what.
[*]I score a hit during battle with my I.K.S. Pagh and intend to use Officer Exchange Program to score 5 points. But my opponent has Polarized Hull Plating to nullify the damage marker. Who wins out here? There are several considerations here. Who acts first? Does it matter who initiated battle? If I act first, can the opponent nullify my points with Polarized Hull Plating?
This is a fun one, because the rulebook actually has an answer, but it's not a useful answer.

What the rules say is this: if you initiate an action, the opponent gets first chance to respond. If the action is simultaneous (it uses combat pairings as the example), then the player whose turn it is gets to respond first. Either way, the player who plays first is going to win, since the second player can't respond to the tactic being placed until it's already gone.

Question is: which category does applying tactics fall under? The rulebook says that all damage gets applied in the same set, so I'm gonna say it's a simultaneous thing, and thus since it's your turn, you get to score 5 points and your opponent gets to hand on to the hull plating for another day. (Or the second damage marker?)
[*]My ship is about to be destroyed during a Borg Ship battle. I play The Needs of the Many... to nullify Borg Ship. Is my ship still destroyed? More pointedly, why would removing a "ship" from battle after the battle results been determined affect the results? Or more generally, does removing all ships (or for Q's sake, "ships") from one side of the battle automatically end the battle... even as the results are being played out?
I'm gonna hang a lot of weight on "about to", which means "hasn't happened yet". A response can modify the original action, so if that response disappears the ship, it can't be there to fire.
[*]Back to The Needs of the Many.... This interrupt can't be played until a ship is about to be destroyed. So if I encounter a dilemma and fail a condition that results in my ship being destroyed but play The Needs of the Many... is my crew or away team stopped? If that dilemma is "God" does that change the situation? More generally, what does it mean to nullify a card after its results are "set in motion"?
Nope, because the dilemma was nullified. No effect, didn't happen, wasn't there, nothing to see. Regular (non-Self) dilemmas are way easier to explain: you figure out what will happen if you don't do anything about it, then you respond to change what will happen, then whatever happens, happens. So in the same way that nullifying a Kivas Fajo: Collector means you don't draw the cards, nullifying a dilemma means it never does anything.
[*]My opponent starts a download, but I reveal Computer Crash, they try to use a special download in response, but I tell them the glossary says they can't because Computer Crash is special. So instead, they play Quinn to nullify Computer Crash, but I play my Quinn to nullify their Quinn. In response, they try to use the special download again. Can they?
More directly, does the anteroactive nature of Computer Crash (because, again, it's special) apply to all derivative responses of Computer Crash?
Because Computer Crash will never leave play in this scenario, you don't have a window where a download is legal.
[*]Why is Computer Crash special (other than because the glossary says so)? For a more concrete question, does Containment Field apply anteroactively as well? For instance, if I respond to Containment Field being revealed with a special download, am I obligated to place a card on Containment Field?
Why isn't a rules question. My guess is that they didn't want you to be able to draw out a Crash and then dump a bunch of downloads in response?

The broader answer is that Decipher never really nailed down exactly what a [HA] *was* in terms of timing. (And to be fair, I can't say I've given it much thought over the years, as I just realized while thinking about this one). I *think* the idea was that the card has always *been* in play, and you're just finding out about it. Thus, once it's flipped you can't really respond before it happens, because it happened somewhere in "the past". Which I think functionally should mean "you can't respond to a HA being flipped"... but that's not what the rules say right now.
[*]I attack my opponent at a homeworld. They use Q the Referee to download Strategema in an attempt to cancel the battle. I claim that it is too late for Strategema to prevent the battle; am I correct?
Nope. They responded to initiation with an action that prevents battle. No different from an Asteroid Sanctuary. No shooties for you.
[*]I play Crosis. In response, my opponent plays Assimilate This!, I nullify it with Amanda Rogers. Moving to their next best response, they want to play Amanda Rogers. However, since Amanda Rogers is a "just" action whereas Assimilate This! is not, it is too late to play Amanda Rogers?
Yup, because "just" actions happen before not-"just" actions. This is a dumb rule, but yet it is a rule.
[*]How does Quite a Coincidence *really* work? Notably, it plays "on" a personnel indicating the personnel play reached the "results" step. On the other hand, most "just played" cards (e.g. Quinn, Amanda Rogers, etc.) occur during responses. "Quite a Coincidence"; isn't it?
It's a "just" response, which happens after it's happened. (Kinda has to, since it's an HA and needs to land on an actual person in play).
(Design aside: it's also because letting you play this on a personnel at any time means you could do it in response to killing the personnel, which means it might as well read "flip when you kill someone to score points")
[*]I attempt to play a card during my opponent's turn but my opponent has 211th Rule of Acquisition on a Ferengi Trading Post. Before I pay the costs to play my card, additional waiters show up on the trading post (say by Miles' Near Warp Transport occurring in response to paying another cost), am I obligated to discard more cards? More generally, are costs for an action ever "locked in"? If so, when?
I think you'd have to pay the extra cards, because you haven't resolved initiation yet. It feels like you shouldn't, but if you didn't than Containment Field doesn't work as intended either. (But if you'd asked this question before the HA ones, I think I'd have answered the other way, tbh.)
[*]My opponent plays Wall of Ships to download an Enterprise. I want to reveal Computer Crash. Since the resolution of Wall of Ships consists of several subactions (e.g. downloading a ship then discarding the event), why can't I wait until the resolution of Wall of Ships to reveal Computer Crash? In which case, does Computer Crash still apply retroactively to the initiation of Wall of Ships?
I think at *best* you'd have to do it in response to the actual download. HAs flip at "valid response" speed, so you can't flip it in response to the discard. But I think the subaction angle is distraction. If you let the card download, then it's too late to use a response to prevent that download.
[*]When does effects that "play a card" require a normal card play? For instance, Energy Vortex appears to require the opponent to use appropriate resources (e.g. a normal card play). However, cards like The Office of Dixon Hill and Organ Theft seem to be that the cards played don't use a normal card play. Further, if I play a card with my normal card play and you use Energy Vortex, isn't may normal card play "used" at that point? Maybe this question really is: Is the glossary entry for Energy Vortex accurate?[/list]
I was doing some digging into Vortex a while back. As I understand it, it does two things: first, it undoes the card play you were trying to play (including costs paid). Then second, it requires your next action to be playing a card from hand, if possible.

As currently ruled, this is *stupidly* easy to work around, since you can try to play card A for free using an HQ, get Vortexed, play card B using your normal card play (or a different free engine), and then play card A again. In a world where you're going to play 3-4 cards in a turn anyway, playing them in a slightly different order ain't no big thing.


Whew! There was some definite brain-benders in that one.
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First Edition Rules Master
By BCSWowbagger (James Heaney)
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1E World Champion 2021
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#559354
I tend to avoid answering hard questions in this forum, for fear that people will take my answers as authoritative even when they aren't. (If it ain't blue it ain't official, but I know I always took the Rules Master's opinion extra-seriously back before I took the job myself.) But how can I resist taking a crack at these gorgeously tricky brain-teasers? (Why didn't I put any of these on the Rules Committee application?) Excellent questions, Franklin! It's not even my birthday!

I just wanna say off the bat that not only could I be wrong about some of these answers, but some of these areas of the rules are genuinely ambiguous, and may not have actual correct answers -- not by rule, and not even by custom. I have thought for a long time (and said so, often) that it is broadly underappreciated what baffling and dangerous beasts roam in The Land Of Suspends Play, which several of these questions exploit. I mean, these land mines are one big reason we're looking at restructuring actions in the first place! (I dunno what former Rules Master Allen Gould wrote, because I didn't read it yet. I wanted to answer these questions without anyone else's thinking influencing me first. He may have some things right that I don't.)

Also, there's zero chance I get through all 21 of these tonight. But I'm on vacation, so I'll probably keep coming back throughout the week, because, again, what fun!
FranklinKenter wrote: Fri Aug 06, 2021 6:37 pm
  1. "That was cool" so I score 5 points, giving me enough points to win the game. But the opponent wishes to play Khan! to nullify those points. Do I win the game before they can play Khan!?
You can't play Khan! until "just after" the points are scored, meaning they have been scored and the game is over.

Khan! is not a "valid response" that modifies an action before it resolves; it is a "just after response" that does something after an action resolves. ("Just after response" is not an official term from the rules; it is a term used internally by the Rules Committee ever since we noticed that these clearly exist and aren't well-described by the rules, which lump all "just" responses together.)

Not every use of the word "just" guarantees that it is a "just after response." Amanda Rogers and Android Headlock, for example (you can tell I looked up the A's here), both use "just"... but they are actually both valid responses, because the rest of their card makes clear that they play before resolution.

(In Amanda's case, you know this because she nullifies an interrupt "just played," meaning it has been initiated, not an interrupt that has "just entered play," which would mean it had resolved. In Android Headlock's case, you know this because "engagement" initiates the combat stage of personnel battle for the involved personnel; the resolution of that stage is the outcome -- stunned, mortally wounded, or neither.)
[*]I attempt to play a card from my hand. Thanks to Manheim's Dimensional Door and other shenanigans, my opponent plays Masaka Transformations on me before costs are paid for playing the card. What happens to the card I was to play? Where is it? What if this occurs after costs are paid?
I don't thinnnnnnnk your opponent can do this, at least not the way you described. Manheim's Dimensional Door works as a valid response to a card play. You can't use it until the card play (I'm going to assume you're playing Mutation, for the sake of having an example) has been initiated, which means that all costs have been paid.

That being said, I think I see the broader question you are trying to ask here, which is, what if I do manage to find some shenanigans that allow me to inflict a Masaka on you in the middle of the initiation step? There probably are shenanigans somewhere out there that allow this. My answer is that the card you were trying to play would still be in your hand and would be shuffled away, because it was never initiated. The card is gone and no costs have been paid.
[*]My opponent plays Energy Vortex on my ship I am using to report with crew. If I play another copy of the same ship, can I still report with crew? What about a different ship?
Depends on the origin of the report-with-crew power. If the report-with-crew originated from some limited resource (e.g. Space-Time Portal), that cost has already been paid (because you can't play Energy Vortex until after initiation is complete, during the response step) and STP is no longer available. If the report-with-crew power is innate to the ship you are playing (e.g. Borg Scout), then the resource is still available and can be used.

I think all you have to do is declare that you are using the report-with-crew function during the "declaring the function of a multi-function card" step.

(This step is criminally underdescribed in the Glossary. I believe it encompasses everything from, "I am using playing The Power for its first function," to "I am playing Ilon Tandro in [Fed] mode to Guest Quarters for free using Here By Invitation," which is actually declaring the use of several interlocking functions across several cards, a few of which are single-function.)
[*] Most generally, if it comes time to pay costs for an action, and you thought you could but can't, are you obligated to pay as many as possible?
First Edition has no "Do As Much As You Can" rule. You must do all that is required or you can do none. If it comes time to pay the costs for an action and you can't, the action is illegal and is undone from the start -- including the Treacherous Advice and the [DL] of it.

(*Worf voice* And that's why Romulan Ale special downloading prior to the response step should be illegal.)

That's all I have time for tonight! Back tomorrow, I hope, if I get my chores done here at the vacation cabin. :)


P.S.
Maybe this question really is: Is the glossary entry for Energy Vortex accurate?
Without answering the rest of that complicated question, I know for a fact that it (both the Glossary entry and probably the card) are due for a rewrite, at the very least because they use the word "different" incorrectly. Energy Vortex's Glossary entry says you can fulfill the requirement of playing a "different" card by playing another copy of the same card. For Energy Vortex, that is currently true and correct, because the Glossary says so, and the Glossary's rulings override all general rules to the contrary...

...but it goes directly against the definition of "different" that was settled on in 2013-2014, and which is used everywhere else in the game. The general definition of "different" says, no, a second copy is not a different card.

Irrelevant to your question, but it's my pet peeve about Energy Vortex, and points to the immense age and other potential foibles of that particular Glossary entry. (Its last revision was probably in the '90s, although I can't guarantee it.)

EDIT: Have now read Allen's answers to the questions I've done, and am pleased to see that, aside from our emphasis and some details on how we explored the alternatives, we seem to agree on the substance in each case. We'll see if that holds up!
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By BCSWowbagger (James Heaney)
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#559409
FranklinKenter wrote: Fri Aug 06, 2021 6:37 pm 5. I am playing Hidden Fighter during the opponent's turn, I am supposed to discard cards toward the opponent's 211th Rule of Acquisition. While discarding cards to 211th Rule of Acquisition, the opponent gives some Treacherous Advice (again with Martok Founder). Do cards discarded this way satisfy 211th Rule of Acquisition? More generally, if something happens while paying costs for an action, do those somethings count toward the cost even if they did not necessarily occur explicitly to pay the cost?
No.

This answer is short because my bone-deep certainty that this is the correct answer is somewhat undermined by my complete lack of confidence that the rules text adequately supports it.
6. I suspend play with Q the Referee to download a [Ref] card. Why can't I use that same Q the Referee to download another [Ref] card before it is discarded (and repeat ad nauseam)?
Because the "discard incident" is not worded as a cost, but instead as an effect, I can't find a better answer to this question than, "Because that's not how it's played." Universal custom (and a lack of appreciation for the absurdity of suspends-play timing) prevents this. I don't see a rule that does.

It's possible that players think suspends-play works like split-second in Magic (which blocks further abilities, including additional split-seconds until the split-second is resolved). However, that is not how suspends-play works.

I'm going to cross my fingers and hope Allen thought of something I didn't.
7. My opponent plays an event, and I play Kevin Uxbridge to nullify it, is that event still considered "just played"? If so, may I play another Kevin Uxbridge to nullify the event "again" (in much the same way you can play multiple non-cumulative effects on the game target; they just don't do anything)?
Yes. Your opponent initiated the play of The Event by playing The Event. You then move to The Event's responses step. You responded to The Event by initiating a play of Kevin. You then move to Kevin's responses step (which is nested inside The Event's responses step). Your opponent responded to The Event by nullifying Kevin (presumably with his own play of Amanda Rogers, to which you had no response). Your initial response of Kevin now resolves (by discarding without effect). You now drop back into the responses step of The Event. Since you have not advanced to resolution, The Event is still "just played" and may be hit by another Kevin. There's no cumulative rule to worry about here, because your first Kevin is already gone.

This describes the chain of events for a "just" card that is a valid response. However, a very similar analysis holds for a "just" card that is a "just after" response, like Particle Fountain.

You are still in the "just" window until one player tries to do something that is neither a "just" action or a response to a "just" action (and the other player allows him to do so by not playing/using another "just" action).

(Did that sentence make sense? Feels like it got away from me a bit.)
8. I play Countermanda in response to an opponent's Palor Toff - Alien Trader. Furious, they nullify their own Palor Toff - Alien Trader before my Countermanda resolves (say with Gint downloading 47th Rule of Acquisition). Does my Countermanda still take effect? More generally, if an action responds to a pending effect and that effect is nullified, is the currently pending responding action cancelled?
*looks up both cards, since one is banned and the other I've never seen used*

I don't think there's any universal custom on this, because I don't think I've ever seen anything quite like this. The rules, of course, are not altogether clear about it.

I think that Countermanda would still resolve as usual. She was a perfectly valid response when played, even though her respondent vanished in a puff of smoke a few moments later -- even though her respondent was in fact nullified, therefore barred from taking effect.

It's possible to overinterpret nullification as erasing all of a card's direct and indirect effects on the game ab initio. (I was tempted to do this the first time I read the question, which is why I mention it.) This is an understandable mental error given the way nullifiers work in dilemma resolution... but nullification doesn't erase everything a card does; it only prevents the card from having any effect when it reaches its resolution step and forces it to discard at that time. Costs are still paid, and, on cards that have long-term effects, nullifying it doesn't reach back in time and prevent those effects from having happened.

***

That's good for tonight! That Q the Ref one still has me shook.
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#559496
FranklinKenter wrote: Fri Aug 06, 2021 6:37 pm 9. I play We Are the Borg (or Bajoran Civil War, etc.) for its download function, but the opponent reveals Computer Crash. Am I obligated to play We Are the Borg for its table function?
No.

When a Hidden Agenda card is activated in the response step, its effect is considered retroactive to the start of the initiation of the action. So when I flip Computer Crash in response to your We Are The Borg, we don't modify the action like a normal response would; we reset the entire action, implicitly "time-traveling" back to the moment you said, "I play We Are The Borg for its download function" and redoing the entire initiation from there.

Because Computer Crash is active when we do the initiation this time, your attempt to play We Are The Borg for its download function" fails at the legality check during the (redone) initiation. Your attempted play of WATB for its second function fails, and so it simply returns to hand as if it were a player error.

This is, of course, bonkers. There is a tabled research project in the Rules Committee to figure out what cards actually depend on this insane rule to function correctly, in the hopes that we can unwind it and make causality in First Edition linear again.

(Was this not what you were asking? It looks like a question about Computer Crash's tricky timing nonsense. I mean, why use Computer Crash in an example if you possibly avoid it? Card's a rules nightmare.

(However, I think you might have been asking whether illegally playing/using a card for one function obligates you to use it for another function if possible. For example, suppose I play I'm A Doctor, Not A Bricklayer for its third function, then notice during the legality check that I don't actually have OFFICER present with my MEDICAL -- simple mistake. Am I then obligated to play Bricklayer for its second function, assuming I have a MEDICAL somewhere in play?

(I believe the answer is no. If your declared function on a multi-function card fails the legality check, it just quietly returns to hand; there's nothing in the rules that requires you to try to "save" the card play by any means necessary prior to the legality step. You only start to gain those obligations if you reach the target-selection step. I have seen this ruled the other way at local tournaments, but I believe those rulings were based on simple misunderstandings of the initiation step.)
10, If I draw cards during a report with crew, am I allowed to report the cards I draw with the report with crew, if applicable? In another scenario, I start drawing cards with Sherlock Holmes, but the opponent plays Subspace Schism, reducing the total number of cards in their hand; do I still draw up to the original number? More generally, if there is a group action where an action is "unlimited" (Red Alert, report with crew, Sherlock Holmes, etc.), is the number of times the subaction is to be performed determined or chosen a priori or do you just keep doing it until you are blue in the cards?
Yes, yes, and the number of times is not predetermined.

Matter of fact, this exact problem is why Sherlock Holmes was banned in OTF. There was a trick where you used Sherlock Holmes + Tribunal of Q (whose gametext overrides the "without downloading" restriction on Holmes) to download every [Ref] card in a single action.
11. I score a hit during battle with my I.K.S. Pagh and intend to use Officer Exchange Program to score 5 points. But my opponent has Polarized Hull Plating to nullify the damage marker. Who wins out here? There are several considerations here. Who acts first? Does it matter who initiated battle? If I act first, can the opponent nullify my points with Polarized Hull Plating?
Ah yes, the mysterious and totally undocumented "just about to" timing step!

This is another timing window that, like the "just after" step, clearly exists in the game, and which the Rules Committee is aware of, but which has zero ink about it in the Glossary. (Again: this a reason for our revision of action rules!) Like the "just after" step, the "just about to" step is only accessible by cards that suspend play and cards that specifically call it out. We believe it takes place after valid responses and before resolution, but cards within it end up functioning just like cards in the valid responses step -- kind of a step 2b.

Since Officer Exchange Program and Polarized Hull Plating both share this timing, actions - taking turns controls which one gets precedence. The rule there is "When an action you initiated is in its optional responses step, your opponent has the first opportunity to initiate a response."

Therefore, the defending player's card "fires" first, and resolves before the attacking player gets to use hers. No matter which card that is, its resolution makes it so the tactic in question is no longer "just about to" be placed on the target [22] ship (in Polarized's case because it nullified the tactic and it is now in the discard pile; in Exchange's case because the tactic was converted to points and is now out-of-play), and so the second response can no longer be used.
12. My ship is about to be destroyed during a Borg Ship battle. I play The Needs of the Many... to nullify Borg Ship. Is my ship still destroyed? More pointedly, why would removing a "ship" from battle after the battle results been determined affect the results? Or more generally, does removing all ships (or for Q's sake, "ships") from one side of the battle automatically end the battle... even as the results are being played out?
Truth to tell, I believe there is still some controversy about the general question here. However, I am on Team You Can't Escape Damage Just By Ending A Battle You Just Lost, Dude. The WEAPONS have already fired by this stage; the placement of damage markers is simply showing what those WEAPONS already did. Go ahead and cloak in the middle of damage placement or whatever; you're still going to take whatever damage you earned.

If I am right about this, then nullifying the Borg Ship dilemma when damage markers are being applied will wipe out the Borg Ship (without scoring points), but will not prevent those damage markers being applied. The good news is, you can still use The Needs of the Many to nullify one of those damage markers! The bad news is, if your opponent is using rotation damage markers, you are sporked. And that lack of protection against rotation damage appears to have been a deliberate choice by the designers of the card.

That's my bit for tonight! Now gonna scroll to see whether I'm still more or less vibeing with Allen.

EDIT: On review, I think Allen is right about Question 11 (regarding the conflict between Officer Exchange and Polarized Hull). I didn't read actions - taking turns closely enough. First, the rule says that responses are resolved in favor of the player who didn't initiate the action... but then (the part I forgot) it says that "simultaneously initiated actions" are resolved in favor of the player whose turn it is.

That rule seems fishy to me -- the idea that an action played after revealing adversaries isn't a response to revealing that adversary strikes me as a misunderstanding of the rules by a different part of the rules--but it is also black-letter law (FOR NOW), and I am bound to agree with it! And it is clearly the more applicable rule, of the two competing (possibly contradictory) rules here. So the winner of this conflict would be the player whose turn it is, under current rules.

Allen may also be right about how report-with-crew actions, specifically, work. (I'm reasonably confident in the part of my answer that relates to Sherlock Holmes.) I gotta think about that a bit more. I, too, started out tonight thinking (like him) that report-with-crew actions are single actions where you declared the entire crew at the start of the action and then that was what you were stuck with, but the Glossary entry for report with crew called it a group action, which is quite a different thing and is more open to being modified mid-stream by new things showing up in your hand (like a mission attempt or battle). But Allen's (unintentional) pushback puts me back on the fence somewhat.
 
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#559713
I'll respond to a few of these where I have something to add to Allen and James's answers... I may get to the others later after some more thought, and also to break things up so the post is easier to read.
2. I attempt to play a card from my hand. Thanks to Manheim's Dimensional Door and other shenanigans, my opponent plays Masaka Transformations on me before costs are paid for playing the card. What happens to the card I was to play? Where is it? What if this occurs after costs are paid?
Short answer: Masaka is irrelevant and the card is played anyway.

Long answer: Manheim's Door is an odd card with its own glossary entry. In this entry, the "example" actually introduces a new rule not stated on the card or elsewhere in the entry... the card being suspended by the Door is "set aside and not in [your] hand," see emphasized text:
Glossary, Manheim's Dimensional Door wrote:
When this doorway allows a card to be played during a "temporal hiccup," that card may itself be suspended and allow another card to be played, and so on. It is suggested that you take the suspended cards and put them in a stack. When no more temporal hiccups occur, resolve the suspended cards in order from the top of the stack to the bottom. Each card play may be responded to normally, and a card may be played that affects an earlier, suspended card play. See actions - step 2: responses.

Example:
  1. I play K'chiQ. You show a K'chiQ from hand; mine is suspended.
  2. You play Palor Toff. I show a Palor Toff; yours is suspended.
  3. I play Q's Tent. You show a Q's Tent; mine is suspended.
  4. You play Q's Tent (the same one you showed earlier). I show no Q's Tent (my original one has been set aside and is not in my hand), so the card plays start to resolve.
  5. Your Q's Tent resolves; you retrieve Wrong Door from your Tent.
  6. I attempt to resolve my Q's Tent, but you respond with Wrong Door. I play Amanda Rogers to nullify your Wrong Door. My Q's Tent resolves and I retrieve a Countermanda.
  7. You attempt to resolve Palor Toff. I play Countermanda, suspend your Palor Toff, and take three cards out of your discard pile. Your Palor Toff resolves; if no card remains to retrieve, simply discard Palor Toff.
  8. My K'chiQ resolves and reports for duty.
I assume this rule was introduced to prevent infinite loops, where both players can keep suspending the other's plays with the same card over and over). But the point is that the suspended card is no longer in your hand, so a Masaka hiccup doesn't affect it. It plays as normal.

Side note: This is arguably inconsistent with how Decipher ruled "using the same Q the Referee to target multiple cards," which is one of Franklin's questions further below, so I'll say more there.
3. My opponent plays Energy Vortex on my ship I am using to report with crew. If I play another copy of the same ship, can I still report with crew? What about a different ship?

21. When does effects that "play a card" require a normal card play? For instance, Energy Vortex appears to require the opponent to use appropriate resources (e.g. a normal card play). However, cards like The Office of Dixon Hill and Organ Theft seem to be that the cards played don't use a normal card play. Further, if I play a card with my normal card play and you use Energy Vortex, isn't may normal card play "used" at that point? Maybe this question really is: Is the glossary entry for Energy Vortex accurate?
Grouping both of the Vortex questions together. The objectively most-successful deck I built used Vortex quite a bit, so I dug into the rules on this card a lot. Here is my interpretation, which I ran by several TDs and the Decipher rules staff before the '99 regionals season -- they concurred with my reading, but to my knowledge it never appeared in an official rules document.

Any costs paid to initiate the card play, including the use of your normal card play, are not returned if the play is stopped by Energy Vortex. (Just like if an Event is Kevin-ed, you don't get the card play back.) You only get to play another card specifically because Energy Vortex tells you to do so. In particular:
  • If you discard Space-Time Portal to report a ship with crew and I Vortex it, the once-per-game "cost" is used up and you can't STP another ship. You instead must play another card from your hand (could be an Event, Personnel, whatever).
  • If I am foolish enough to Vortex a free card play, you can actually play any other card you want from hand, even something that doesn't play for free. I learned this when I blundered and instinctively Vortex-ed a ship my opponent played -- it was a Xepolite Freighter which played free to Docking Ports, he gave me a quizzical look, played some other random personnel, then free-played the Freighter anyway.
If a card allows (or requires) you to "play" a card (Organ Theft, Visit Cochrane Memorial, Parallax Arguers, etc.), it doesn't require or use your normal card play, that card is giving you that resource. In the Manheim's example above from the glossary, Manheim's "play" text even lets you play a Doorway on your opponent's turn.
6. I suspend play with Q the Referee to download a [Ref] card. Why can't I use that same Q the Referee to download another [Ref] card before it is discarded (and repeat ad nauseam)?
Decipher actually ruled you *can* do this, as odd as it sounds, but you only get one [Ref] card in the end. For some context, this may have been one of those "because we say so" rulings against one of Olav's clever decks.

Olav's idea was to commandeer Empok Nor, download all the equipment, STP to hand, and Masaka to draw the rest of his deck, which was a few EMH Programs, and a bunch of I've Been Waiting For You and other holograms. The idea was you could beat a Scorched Hand because both EMH and IBWFY suspend play, so you could play all your cards before it resolved. (Edit: I remembered wrong, in the link below Olav used the Mr. Mister trick to draw his deck, not Empok/STP, but that's not relevant to the question at hand.)

Decipher ruled that you can use the same QtR to repeatedly target the *same* Scorched Hand for downloading... each time Olav would suspend play with an EMH or IBWFY, the opponent could respond by suspending play with the same QtR targeting the same Scorched; eventually Olav would run out of suspend play actions, your Scorched resolves and wipes out his hand, the QtR discards, and all the other "suspended" QtR downloads fizzle.

The deck can be seen here, along with the Decipher ruling at the end:

https://web.archive.org/web/20071031040 ... ting.shtml

Extrapolating from that ruling, if you are downloading a [Ref] card with QtR, you *can* suspend that download and target another card. But when that download resolves, your QtR discards and the first download fizzles. If this is indeed a general principle, this could answer a number of the other questions.

But this is another ruling that AFAIK never made it into an official document. And at least in spirit, it is at odds with the Manheim rule about suspended cards being "set aside" in some way.
Last edited by Rachmaninoff on Fri Aug 13, 2021 11:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.
 
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#559716
One more for tonight:
5. I am playing Hidden Fighter during the opponent's turn, I am supposed to discard cards toward the opponent's 211th Rule of Acquisition. While discarding cards to 211th Rule of Acquisition, the opponent gives some Treacherous Advice (again with Martok Founder). Do cards discarded this way satisfy 211th Rule of Acquisition? More generally, if something happens while paying costs for an action, do those somethings count toward the cost even if they did not necessarily occur explicitly to pay the cost?
I agree with Allen and James that this sort of double-dipping should not happen. The underlying principle is explained in "Actions - Step 1: Initiation - Cards played as a cost": when you discard/play a card for some other effect, its game text is ignored -- for example, when you play Scan to initiate battle at a Nebula, you don't also get to look at the cards under a mission.

Perhaps a more concrete justification is that effects are additive. 211th Rule requires you to discard X cards, Treacherous Advice requires you to discard Y cards, and the net effect is you have to discard X + Y cards, not max(X,Y) cards. Just like if you have New Arrivals and The Traveler: Transcendence in play, you can't avoid decking out by drawing one card and claiming it satisfies the draw for both. This rule may be implicit, but seems fundamental to how everyone plays the game.
 
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#559836
1. "That was cool" so I score 5 points, giving me enough points to win the game. But the opponent wishes to play Khan! to nullify those points. Do I win the game before they can play Khan!?
Agree with Allen and James -- Khan! plays "just after," so your Arguers have already resolved and the game is over. It would be different if Khan! said "nullifies bonus points being scored by an opponent" or something like that.
4. I am attempting a special download, but through some string events (including say Martok Founder into Treacherous Advice), I am not able to place a card on Containment Field. Is that special download "used"? Most generally, if it comes time to pay costs for an action, and you thought you could but can't, are you obligated to pay as many as possible?
In your scenario, I am assuming that Containment Field is already face-up and in play (although I think it doesn't matter, since hidden agenda activation is retroactive to the start of an action, see actions - step 2: responses - Responses modifying targets or conditions)

Containment Field specifies that I have to stack a card there before I use the download icon ("must first"). If I am attempting to place a card on Containment Field and you suspend *that* action to download Treacherous Advice to empty my hand, I am unable to complete the action of stacking a card on CF, and I am therefore unable to use the special download, so it remains unused. (*) If you wait until I use the download icon, I've already placed a card on Containment Field, so Treacherous Advice does nothing.

In other words: my read of the "must first" wording on Containment Field is that it lies in the nebulous "just before" timing window James alluded to above.

(*) A longer explanation is found under actions - step 2: responses - Responses modifying targets or conditions. This is a situation where an action was initiated (placing a card on CF), and the *target* of the action (the card I wanted to place) became invalid after the action was initiated for some reason other than revealing a hidden agenda. In such cases, "the action is 'played out' without results."
agendas)

7. My opponent plays an event, and I play Kevin Uxbridge to nullify it, is that event still considered "just played"? If so, may I play another Kevin Uxbridge to nullify the event "again" (in much the same way you can play multiple non-cumulative effects on the game target; they just don't do anything)?
Note: Kevin doesn't use the word "just played," so I assume you are trying to use some other "just" action afterwards.

If I nullify the event with Kevin, it never resolved and so it never was "just played." (actions - "just" specifies that the "just" timing window is after resolution of the action). (Edit: this is wrong, see my response below)

The separate question is whether you can play multiple Kevins to nullify the same event. If your opponent nullifies some of your Kevins (say, with Q2), the answer is clearly yes. (actions - step 2: responses says "More than one valid response may be made to an action.") Otherwise, if you are just trying to play 3 Kevins on the same event just to get more cards out of your hand, it's a bit trickier, but I would say no -- while you can make more than one valid response to an action, they have to be done sequentially, and once the first Kevin resolves the event is nullified and the action is over ("cancelled").

(The possible gap in the rules is whether you are allowed to continue to play responses to an action after it is nullified. Strictly speaking, the nullify entry does not say that the action immediately ends, but it would be very counterintuitive to me if you could continue responding to an action that's already been nullified. Notice that the Glossary example of how you can play multiple responses has the nullification action last.)
8. I play Countermanda in response to an opponent's Palor Toff - Alien Trader. Furious, they nullify their own Palor Toff - Alien Trader before my Countermanda resolves (say with Gint downloading 47th Rule of Acquisition). Does my Countermanda still take effect? More generally, if an action responds to a pending effect and that effect is nullified, is the currently pending responding action cancelled?
This is a little bit similar to the example I alluded to above, under actions - step 2: responses -- you can respond to a Palor Toff by first playing/resolving Countermanda, and then with Amanda Rogers to nullify the original Palor.

This case is slightly different because you are using a special download to nullify Palor first. Here I would turn to actions - step 2: responses - Responses modifying targets or conditions: "If a condition for an action becomes invalid before the action resolves, for any reason other than the activation of a hidden agenda, ... it has no effect on the initiation." The example given is that if a K'chiQ play is suspended to slap a Revolving Door onto your AU door, it doesn't matter, you checked the [1E-AU] condition during initiation and the action still resolves. Same thing here, Countermanda was initiated as a valid response, and it will resolve regardless of whether the initial conditions for playing it still exist.

My answer would be different if there were a *hidden agenda* revealed that could nullify Palor, in this case the preceding paragraph in the glossary states that its effects are retroactive to the start of initiation -- so Palor couldn't be played in the first place, and Countermanda goes back to your hand.
9. I play We Are the Borg (or Bajoran Civil War, etc.) for its download function, but the opponent reveals Computer Crash. Am I obligated to play We Are the Borg for its table function?
No, again citing actions - step 2: responses - Responses modifying targets or conditions: "If a hidden agenda is activated as a response to an action, all of its effects are retroactive to the start of the initiation of the action, as if the hidden agenda had already been revealed before the action was initiated. Thus, if the hidden agenda invalidates a condition for an action, the action becomes illegal. If the action was a card play, the card returns to your hand."

It's as if you never tried to play We Are the Borg at all.
Last edited by Rachmaninoff on Sat Aug 21, 2021 9:41 am, edited 1 time in total.
 
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#560154
dear all that have replied,

I am waiting for you to finish your replies before I chime in, so if you are done, please say so. :P :P
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#560160
Oh good. I slightly abandoned thread because I thought you'd left the chat. Thanks! I'll try and get back to it in the next couple days. (Have some stuff eating my nights now, but a bit more time in day.)
 
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#560212
Sorry for the delay, crazy week at work, and I want to think these through properly rather than answering off the cuff. Working on these a few at a time, I do plan to get to them all eventually.

First, I need to update two of my answers:

For the Energy Vortex/report with crew questions, I want to clarify that generic "play a card" text (like the replacement card on Energy Vortex) does *not* allow for a report-with-crew. (Under report with crew: "Reporting with crew replaces your normal card play, except for the reports allowed by Space-Time Portal and Sphere Encounter. You may not replace an additional card play, such as one allowed by Delta Quadrant Spatial Scission." A clunky rule, since there's no reason to except STP and Sphere Encounter except "that's what the cards were designed to do", but it is what it is.)

For 7, I was wrong about "just played," these do happen during the responses phase and not after resolution. There are actually two "just" windows, one during step 2 (responses) and one for wholly new actions after. Apologies. This doesn't change the answer to the underlying question (whether you can play multiple Kevins) but my response was wrong.
10. If I draw cards during a report with crew, am I allowed to report the cards I draw with the report with crew, if applicable? In another scenario, I start drawing cards with Sherlock Holmes, but the opponent plays Subspace Schism, reducing the total number of cards in their hand; do I still draw up to the original number? More generally, if there is a group action where an action is "unlimited" (Red Alert, report with crew, Sherlock Holmes, etc.), is the number of times the subaction is to be performed determined or chosen a priori or do you just keep doing it until you are blue in the cards?
Targets have to be declared during step 1 (initiation), so if your action is "use Red Alert! to play a bunch of cards in place of my normal card play" part of targeting is selecting which cards you are going to report. If you draw more cards once your plays are resolving in step 3, you can't go back to step 1 and change the target. (In other words: Deyos + Red Alert! doesn't let you dump your whole deck into play.)

(I realize this is a different interpretation than James, which puts me on dangerous territory... but that's how I would rule.)
11. I score a hit during battle with my I.K.S. Pagh and intend to use Officer Exchange Program to score 5 points. But my opponent has Polarized Hull Plating to nullify the damage marker. Who wins out here? There are several considerations here. Who acts first? Does it matter who initiated battle? If I act first, can the opponent nullify my points with Polarized Hull Plating?
My first reaction was in line with Allen's (whoever's turn it is goes first), then James's response made me think twice. In the end I agree with Allen -- damage is applied automatically in step 7 of a ship battle, it's not an action you specifically initiated that your opponent is responding to -- so whoever's turn it is gets first response.

12. My ship is about to be destroyed during a Borg Ship battle. I play The Needs of the Many... to nullify Borg Ship. Is my ship still destroyed? More pointedly, why would removing a "ship" from battle after the battle results been determined affect the results? Or more generally, does removing all ships (or for Q's sake, "ships") from one side of the battle automatically end the battle... even as the results are being played out?
This may be controversial, but I actually want to say that The Needs of the Many... can't nullify Borg Ship this way. The Borg Ship isn't directly destroying your ship, it's the rotation damage or Tactic doing the destruction. (As opposed to, say, failing to meet the requirements of V'Ger.) If we allow "causation" to be transitive (Borg Ship -> battle damage -> destroying my ship) this way, the chain could be stretched far enough that The Needs of the Many... seems absurd. Can it nullify a Scout Encounter that downloaded a ship that initiated battle that caused enough damage to destroy your ship? What about Royale Casino: Elevator if it lets my opponent report a Bashir Founder who then downloads a Supernova to destroy my ship? etc.

But on reflection, this may not be consistent with the simplified Mona Lisa rules for determining fault. So I don't know.

Maybe I'm missing the point of the question -- what happens if a ship is somehow removed from battle after results have been determined? I don't think it has any effect, in the rulebook under "ship battle", ship destruction happens in the final stage (8. Resolution) when damage has already been decided. To my knowledge, only hidden agendas have the power to retroactively change things that have already happened.

To illustrate the point without any fancy timing tricks, consider a regular ship-vs-ship battle where both ships score a direct hit on the other. One of the ships will leave play before the other just because actions don't happen simultaneously... that doesn't cancel the battle and save the other ship.
13. Back to The Needs of the Many.... This interrupt can't be played until a ship is about to be destroyed. So if I encounter a dilemma and fail a condition that results in my ship being destroyed but play The Needs of the Many... is my crew or away team stopped? If that dilemma is "God" does that change the situation? More generally, what does it mean to nullify a card after its results are "set in motion"?
Yeah, this is the nebulous "just before" time window again. Under James's interpretation (that it is a subwindow of step 2 "responses"), it's still in the same phase of the action as any other nullifier, so you aren't stopped.

14. My opponent starts a download, but I reveal Computer Crash, they try to use a special download in response, but I tell them the glossary says they can't because Computer Crash is special. So instead, they play Quinn to nullify Computer Crash, but I play my Quinn to nullify their Quinn. In response, they try to use the special download again. Can they?
No, their Quinn was nullified, so Computer Crash blocks the download.
More directly, does the anteroactive nature of Computer Crash (because, again, it's special) apply to all derivative responses of Computer Crash?
It's like the "multiple activations of Q the Referee question" above. You try to download. I flip Computer Crash as a response, you try to suspend the action of me flipping Crash by initiating another download. As a valid response, I can attempt to flip over that *same* Crash (you suspended the action, so it hasn't resolved and is still face down), and keep doing the same until you're out of download attempts. At this point, my last attempt to flip over Crash resolves, all the downloads are blocked, and my other attempts to flip the Crash fizzle since it's face-up. It's a funky ruling, but follows the Decipher precedent I linked to above.
15. Why is Computer Crash special (other than because the glossary says so)? For a more concrete question, does Containment Field apply anteroactively as well? For instance, if I respond to Containment Field being revealed with a special download, am I obligated to place a card on Containment Field?
Computer Crash isn't special. All hidden agendas are retroactive, as if they were in play before the action began: "If a hidden agenda is activated as a response to an action, all of its effects are retroactive to the start of the initiation of the action, as if the hidden agenda had already been revealed before the action was initiated. Thus, if the hidden agenda invalidates a condition for an action, the action becomes illegal. If the action was a card play, the card returns to your hand."
 
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#560215
16. I attack my opponent at a homeworld. They use Q the Referee to download Strategema in an attempt to cancel the battle. I claim that it is too late for Strategema to prevent the battle; am I correct?
The question turns on whether Strategema affects a condition for initiating battle, or a target for battle. Relevant text is action - step 2: responses, responses modifying targets and conditions: "If a condition for an action becomes invalid before the action resolves, for any reason other than the activation of a hidden agenda ... it has no effect on the initiation.... If a target of an action becomes invalid after the action is initiated, then the action is "played out" without results. "

My reading of Strategema tends toward the "target" interpretation -- in which case the battle is effectively cancelled. (Technically "played out without results," whatever that means.)
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#560221
I'll do 15 first, then circle back to 14.
FranklinKenter wrote: Fri Aug 06, 2021 6:37 pm 15. Why is Computer Crash special (other than because the glossary says so)? For a more concrete question, does Containment Field apply anteroactively as well? For instance, if I respond to Containment Field being revealed with a special download, am I obligated to place a card on Containment Field?
I think we've all answered this now: Computer Crash has anteroactive effects (I like that word) because it is an [HA] card, and all [HA] cards have this effect where they are retroactive to the initiation of the action to which they are responding, as if they had been in play from the start of that action. (See actions - step 2: responses - responses modifying targets or conditions, paragraph 1) This applies to Containment Field as well.

If you happen to have a list lying around of all [HA] cards that (in your view) actually make use of this anteroactivity, I would find that list very useful, because, as previously indicated, I think this is nutty and I want it to go away (without breaking any existing cards).
My opponent starts a download, but I reveal Computer Crash, they try to use a special download in response, but I tell them the glossary says they can't because Computer Crash is special. So instead, they play Quinn to nullify Computer Crash, but I play my Quinn to nullify their Quinn. In response, they try to use the special download again. Can they?
More directly, does the anteroactive nature of Computer Crash (because, again, it's special) apply to all derivative responses of Computer Crash?
Yes, for the reasons given above. Computer Crash time-traveled back to the start of your special download and now has been on the table since before you initiated the special download (but -- and this only makes it more mind-bendy--you can still respond to it normally, as if it was just revealed, because it was). So the Quinn response is legal, even though anteroactivity means Computer Crash effectively wasn't "just" played anymore.

I really hate this.
16. I attack my opponent at a homeworld. They use Q the Referee to download Strategema in an attempt to cancel the battle. I claim that it is too late for Strategema to prevent the battle; am I correct?
The answer depends on the timing.

If your opponent suspends play to download Strategema after the declaration step of your initiation but before the legality-check step, then the result is straightforward: by the time you reach the legality-check step, Strategema is in play, and the initiation of the action is illegal. The battle does not happen and no costs are paid (no ships are stopped). Despite how much I dislike suspends-play operating in the middle of an initiation step, this answer is straightforward and uncontroversial.

But what if your opponent waits until you finish initiating the battle, then downloads Strategema is downloaded in the response step? It still stops the battle, because Strategema is a valid response to the initiation of battle. (It can't normally be played as one, because it's an Incident and not an Interrupt, but Q the Referee allowed you to play it whenever you wanted.) It is a valid response because it directly modifies the action to which it is responding, by name (and, in this case, modifies it by preventing it). This is also how Magnetic North and Asteroid Sanctuaries can be used as valid responses. (It's less weird with them, since they are actually Interrupts.) Bonus: costs have been paid, so opponent's ships are now all stopped.

"But James!" you may say, "The battle is already initiated, and Strategema (and Magnetic North, for that matter) only prevent initiations. Isn't it too late to prevent this initiation?"

I'm trying to convince myself that hypothetical-you is wrong.

I think the best refutation is that initiation itself is an effect that is initiated and can be modified before resolving, and that's what Strategema and Magnetic North are really doing under the hood. But it's an ugly wording and I'll bet they could be written better once the timing rules are cleaned up a bit.
17. I play Crosis. In response, my opponent plays Assimilate This!, I nullify it with Amanda Rogers. Moving to their next best response, they want to play Amanda Rogers. However, since Amanda Rogers is a "just" action whereas Assimilate This! is not, it is too late to play Amanda Rogers?
It is not too late.

I think I've explained "just" (and some holes in it) at some length already, so I won't repeat myself. But here is another, perhaps useful, way of looking at it. Think of 1E responses kind of like a stack that occasionally clears itself. Think of a "just" response is a response that can only be used if it is the next card/effect on the stack after the card/effect it's responding to OR if all the cards/effects between it and the card/effect it's responding to are also "just" responses to that card/effect.

In this example, you play Crosis. It goes on the bottom of the stack. I respond with Assimilate This!; it goes on the stack. You respond with Amanda Rogers; it goes on the stack. I have no further response to Amanda Rogers, so Amanda Rogers resolves. She destroys Assimilate This! (taking it off the stack and sending it to my discard pile) then discards herself (because she is an interrupt with no lasting effect), so she is off the stack.

But Crosis does not resolve yet, because we are still in its responses step. It is still on the stack. Additional responses are still allowed. So I play Amanda Rogers. She goes on the stack right on top of Crosis. She is a "just" response who is on the stack right next to the card she's responding to, so she is legal there. She then resolves, destroys Crosis, discards herself, and the stack is cleared. We move to Crosis's resolution step (presumably there are no further responses, and I'm not sure further responses would be legal... not that anyone has ever asked to my knowledge), and Crosis isn't around anymore, so the resolution step fizzles.
How does Quite a Coincidence *really* work? Notably, it plays "on" a personnel indicating the personnel play reached the "results" step. On the other hand, most "just played" cards (e.g. Quinn, Amanda Rogers, etc.) occur during responses. "Quite a Coincidence"; isn't it?
QAC should say "a personnel who just entered play" (indicating it fires after resolution step) rather than "a personnel just played" (indicating it fires after the initiation step). However, in fairness to the Rules Committee, QAC came out in 2018, and we only figured out the "played / entered play" distinction three months ago.

Since QAC does not use the correct wording, I surmise that this is a strange-but-not-necessarily-untenable situation where QAC can be placed on a personnel who has not yet finished entering play. Kind of risky, I guess, since opponent could theoretically still respond to the personnel play by getting rid of it before it resolves (e.g. with Energy Vortex) and QAC would return to hand along with it. Gross! But not unintelligible.

A friend is distracting me, so I'll stop there for tonight. I'm close, though, right?
 
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#560232
One more mea culpa on #16 -- James is right, since Strategema is a valid response that's sufficient to prevent the battle, the sidebar on "responses modifying targets or conditions is not needed." (That's what I get for answering one more off the cuff!)

But I do want to check on something:
BCSWowbagger wrote:Bonus: costs have been paid, so opponent's ships are now all stopped.
Are you sure? According to the rulebook ("ship battle") cards are stopped as part of the resolution of the battle in step 8, not as a cost to initiate.

17. I play Crosis. In response, my opponent plays Assimilate This!, I nullify it with Amanda Rogers. Moving to their next best response, they want to play Amanda Rogers. However, since Amanda Rogers is a "just" action whereas Assimilate This! is not, it is too late to play Amanda Rogers?
This is interesting, because it seems to me like there are two ways to interpret the "just" window. One perspective is that it ends as soon as a non-"just" action is *initiated.* In this case it is too late to Mandy the original Crosis, because merely attempting to play Assimilate This! moved us past this. The other is that it ends as soon as a non-"just" action is *resolved.* In this case you can still Mandy the original Crosis, since Assimilate This! was nullified.

If I'm understanding the other responses correctly, Allen takes the former perspective, and James the latter. My original intuition was the same as Allen's, but on carefully reading "actions - 'just'" in the Glossary I can see how both perspectives can be implied. (the clause "before anything else can intervene" suggests initiation, but "'just' actions always take place beefore non-'just' actions" suggests resolution). This may be a genuine ambiguity in the rules.

Will address the remaining ones later this weekend hopefully.
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By BCSWowbagger (James Heaney)
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1E World Champion 2021
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#560238
Rachmaninoff wrote: Sat Aug 21, 2021 9:38 am But I do want to check on something:
BCSWowbagger wrote:Bonus: costs have been paid, so opponent's ships are now all stopped.
Are you sure? According to the rulebook ("ship battle") cards are stopped as part of the resolution of the battle in step 8, not as a cost to initiate.
Yep. Check Rulebook: Battle: Initiating Battle: Sidebar: Cancelled Battles.

I am not certain that my explanation (stopping is an initiation cost) is correct. You may be right that it isn't. But that was my best theory for why that ruling exists.

Lotta genuine ambiguities here.
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