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FNM is least stringent Rule Enforcement Level (REL) sanctioned Magic game there is. My question is that at that REL, are there any behavioral rules, and if so, what are the consequences?

Example: Your opponent gets pissed that he didn't notice one of your viable blockers, you double block and kill his creature creating an outcome he didn't prepare for and decides the proper course of action is to accuse you of cheating and sweep your non-deck cards (sideboard and Dual-Faced Cards) off the table in a huff. Should you call a judge in this case?

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4  
That's a very...specific example. –  Jefromi Oct 24 '11 at 23:23
    
ya know, I wanted to provide some realistic and possibly (although probably not) false details that could tailor answers a bit =) –  Pithlit Oct 25 '11 at 14:29

2 Answers 2

up vote 11 down vote accepted

Yes, there are behavioural rules, and yes there are consequences.

Chapter 5 of Wizards official tournament rules outlines Unsporting conduct.

5.2. Unsporting Conduct — Major

Penalty: Game Loss

Definition

Unsporting Conduct — Major infractions fall into three categories:

  • Failing to follow a direct instruction from a tournament official.
  • Insulting another person based on his or her race, color, religion, national origin, age, gender, disability, or sexual orientation.
  • Aggressive or violent behavior that is not directed at another person or another person’s property.

Examples

... snip ..

D. After losing a match, a player throws his cards onto the table and knocks his chair over in anger.

... snip ...

Additional Remedy

The player must correct the behavior immediately, and can expect to be removed from the tournament venue upon further offenses. As with Unsporting Conduct — Minor infractions, if the offense occurs at the end of a game, it is acceptable for the judge to apply the penalty to the next game instead.

... snip ...

5.5. Unsporting Conduct — Aggressive Behavior

Penalty: Disqualification

Definition

A player acts in a threatening way towards others or their property.

Examples

... snip ...

D. A player tears up a card belonging to another player.

E. A player intentionally turns over a table.

Philosophy

The safety of all people at a tournament is of paramount importance. There will be no tolerance of physical abuse or intimidation.

Additional Remedy

The offender should be asked to leave the venue by the organizer.

Depending on the ruling of the judge, your opponent could either be disqualified or assessed a game loss. I believe in this case, if he touched your cards and threw them on the floor, that would fall under 5.5 and he should be disqualified.

Edit:

AHA, just noticed you asked about REL events. Well this is what the Judging at Regular REL document has to say:

There are also certain behaviours that will not be tolerated in any event. Any player engaging in the following must be disqualified from your event;

  • Aggressive, violent or abusive behaviour (physical or verbal)

  • Cheating, lying or intentionally making illegal game actions or trying to avoid penalties

  • Influencing Match outcomes (by incentives, coercion or random methods)

  • Theft (this includes things like replacing a chase rare in a draft with one from their binder)

If you do have to hand out a Disqualification, let the players know that while your decision is final, the DCI would still like to hear their side of the story. Contact your WPN representative directly, and they will advise you further.

So they tournament organizers would be well within their rights to disqualify this person for aggressive behaviour, but they have more leeway. In any case, it certainly is grounds to call over a judge.

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My understanding is that tantrum-y players get a stern talking-to from the event organizer (or a judge) and then gets booted if the behavior persists.

For straight-up violent or threatening behavior, skip right to that "getting booted" part.

Details from the "Judging at Regular REL" handout:

- General Unwanted Behaviours -

There will sometimes be issues that do not have official fixes, but need to be discouraged. These include, but are not limited to;

  • Players taking unreasonable amounts of time side-boarding or making play decisions
  • Inadequate shuffling after a search
  • Asking for, or providing, strategy advice during a tournament match or booster draft

In all of these cases, educate the player on better behaviour – for example, alternate shuffling techniques or the importance of allowing players to make their own decisions. Players continuing to exhibit specific unwanted behaviour after being instructed otherwise should be issued with a Game Loss.

Players arriving late to their game deserve a special mention, as players more than ten minutes late are considered to have forfeited their match. Also deserving special mention are players engaging in conduct that you feel is likely to upset, offend or affect the safety of others – e.g. using foul language or tearing up cards. Give these players a stern chat about what is expected in your event/store – and let them know that failure to curb this behaviour is considered a Serious Problem and will result in their disqualification.

- Serious Problems -

There are also certain behaviours that will not be tolerated in any event. Any player engaging in the following must be disqualified from your event;

  • Aggressive, violent or abusive behaviour (physical or verbal)
  • Cheating, lying or intentionally making illegal game actions or trying to avoid penalties
  • Influencing Match outcomes (by incentives, coercion or random methods)
  • Theft (this includes things like replacing a chase rare in a draft with one from their binder)

If you do have to hand out a Disqualification, let the players know that while your decision is final, the DCI would still like to hear their side of the story. Contact your WPN representative directly, and they will advise you further.

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