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Author Topic: Elder Dragon Highlander (EDH) Rules @ ATF  (Read 12494 times)
Ed Evans
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« on: March 07, 2009, 12:56:07 PM »

Hey gang in prepartion for the Elder Dragon Highlander (EDH) Events at ATF I am re-posting the basic rules for the game with the various links and such all active!

Please remember this is a "casual play" environment and as such these events aren't sanctioned.  We'll be playing for fun and prizes!

We will be playing under the "Open Play Rules."

Official Elder Dragon Highlander (EDH) Rules

Elder Dragon Highlander is a Magic: The Gathering variant which provides a way of encouraging casual, interactive games with a low barrier to entry while still requiring good deck building skills. It can be played 1-on-1 but is usually multiplayer.

A forum for discussion of the rules, strategy, and changes to EDH can be found here:

This page details the "official" rules common to most groups. Local groups often play with house rules (check the forum for inspiration), but this consensus version exists so that players know what to expect if they join an edh game outside their local play area. In particular, after-hours EDH games at Pro Tours and Grand Prix use these rules.

Deck Construction Rules

Players must choose a legendary creature as the "General" for their deck.

The following cards may not be used as a General: Rofellos

League Rule An EDH "League" consists of a regular group of players who frequently play together using the same decks. No two players in a league game may have the same General. Within a given league, Generals are allocated first-come, first-serve and are preserved between meetings/games. No player may have, in his or her deck, the General of any other player in the game; it should be replaced with some other card before the game begins.
The 'Roll Call' forum (linked above) provides a tool for organiziing and publicizing EDH leagues and reserved Generals.

Open Play Rule: Open play EDH rules are used for games between opponents who do not routinely play together. Generals are not subject to the Legendary rule, although other creatures of the same name are; if a General and a non-General creature of the same name are in play, only the non-General is put into the graveyard by state-based effects. If two opponents in the same game have the same General and both are in play, neither is put into the graveyard (although other, non-General, versions are).
The General's mana cost limits what coloured mana symbols may appear on cards in the deck: if a coloured mana symbol is not present in the General's mana cost, the deck may not contain any cards using that mana symbol. Lands with a basic land type (basic lands, Shock lands, Dual lands, Shadowmoor CIPT-basics, etc) contain the corresponding mana symbol(s) as per CR 212.6g.

Example: If you were play Phelddagrif (Casting cost 1UWG) as your General, your deck may not contain any red or black cards; no card in such a deck may contain red or black mana symbols or hybrid mana symbols ( Talisman of Dominance, Life//Death and Boros Guildmage are not allowed. Degavolver is doubly bad).

A deck may not generate mana outside its colours; anything which would generate mana of an illegal colour generates colourless mana instead.
An EDH deck must contain exactly 100 cards, including the General.

With the exception of basic lands, no two cards in the deck may have the same english name.

EDH is played with vintage legal cards, with the exception that cards are legal as of their set's prerelease.
Additionally, the following are banned:

Test of Endurance * No longer banned *
Worldgorger Dragon
Sway of the Stars
Panoptic Mirror
Crucible of Worlds
Kokosho, the Evening Star
Limited Resources
Ancestral Recall
Black Lotus
Mox Sapphire, Ruby, Pearl, Emerald and Jet
Time Walk
Library of Alexandria
Yawgmoth's Bargain
Coalition Victory
Recurring Nightmare
Protean Hulk
Lion's Eye Diamond
Time Vault *NEW*
Shaharazad is legal for play in EDH, even though it's banned in Vintage. 

Different groups have different philosophies on banned cards.. YMMV.

Play rules

Generals are announced and removed from the game before shuffling at the start of the game. Being a General is not a characteristic[MTG CR201], it is a property of the card. As such, "Generalness" cannot be copied or overwritten by continuous effects, and does not change with control of the card.

Examples: A Body Double copying a General in a graveyard is not a General. A General which is affected by Cytoshape, or is face down, is still a General.

If a player suffers 21 points of combat damage from a single General, they lose. This is an additional state based effect, similar to poison counters, but separate and specific to each General. This damage cannot be healed or undone, even if the creature is removed from play temporarily. Damage done by a creature under someone else's control is still counted towards the 21 point limit for that creature and defender.

While a General is removed from the game, it may be played. As an additional cost to play your General this way, you must pay {2} for each previous time you have played it this way.

If a General would be put into a graveyard from anywhere, its owner may remove it from the game instead. (This is a replacement effect.. the creature never goes to the graveyard and will not trigger abilities on going to the graveyard)

Players begin the game with 40 life.

The first time a player takes a paris mulligan, they draw 7 cards (instead of 6). The second mulligan is to 6, and so forth. (Actually this rule is very old, but it was only recently noted that it was missing from the rules page).



Sheldon Menery is the man responsible for bringing EDH into the public eye, an influential voice in the development of the format's rules, and the Godfather of the Pro Tour EDH League.
Duncan McGregor's knowledge and expertise have, since the early days, been crucial to the format's stable development and its maturing.
David Phifer and Adam Staley were the progenitors of the original EDH format up in Alaska.
Cari Foreman carried the rules torch, and hosted the rules website, during EDH's formative days.
Alex Kenny and Toby Elliott have helped maintain the flavour and stability of the EDH rules for several years.
Lee Sharpe did the programming to bring EDH to MTGO.

EDH Forum

Other online sources of EDH Information

1. All card names are copyright Wizards of the Coast.
2. The contents of this page were created and copyright (2005) by Gavin Duggan and are released for public use (with attribution) under the Academic Free License (AFL) as of April 24th, 2007.


Ed Evans
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Ed Evans
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« Reply #1 on: March 27, 2009, 10:10:36 PM »

Hey guys!

Banned List updated as of 2/20/09

Effective immediately (20 March 2009):

* Tinker is Banned
* Metalworker is Banned

* Crucible of Worlds is Unbanned
* Rofellos, Llanowar Emissary is Unbanned

* Gifts Ungiven is on the Watch List
* Sundering Titan is on the Watch List
* Time Stretch is on the Watch List

The subject of much debate, this should come as no real surprise. We decided that the low cost ability of Tinker to get high cost artifacts (such as Sundering Titan, Mindslaver, or Darksteel Colossus) into play early in games and significantly impact their outcome easily warranted its banning.

Cards that easily and cheaply produce great deals of mana are inherently dangerous to the health of the format. Metalworker is clearly one of those cards, and had to go.

Crucible of Worlds
We felt as though the primary combos with Crucible (Strip Mine and Wasteland) aren't particularly dangerous in a multiplayer format. We will keep an eye on other potential combos with Crucible, but think that for now, it will make the format healthier by being able to provide some control of explosive decks.

Rofellos, Llanowar Emissary
Rofellos has been the poster child for "what might be" without ever being proven to be broken. We think that while strong and possibly have the potential of such terribly anti-social Generals such as Braids, Zur, or Arcum, it also has many social applications. As with any unbanning, we'll keep our eyes peeled, but we seriously doubt that Rofellos will be a format-changing General.

Gifts Ungiven
You love it or you hate it. The reason it's been added to the Watch List is its ability to search your library for two of your best four cards for only four mana. There are many game-breaking two card combos, so we want to keep a serious eye on the ability to get to them so quickly.

Sundering Titan
Three, four, and five color decks being the majority of what gets played in EDH, Sundering Titan can easily strangle any single player, moreso when it comes out early. The fact that it can go into any deck and its asymmetrical nature multiplied this advantage. We're hoping that banning of Tinker and Metalworker will help, but we're still watching this for serious abuse (and recurring ST with Academy Ruins has not escaped us).

Time Stretch
The ability to take multiple turns is a significant advantage in multiplayer games. Time Stretch resolving once isn't so bad, but the second extra turn gives the player a great deal more opportunity for recursion, which we think is problematic. The primary thing saving Time Stretch from the banned list right now is that it costs 10 mana. We'll revisit next time.

Ed Evans
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