# What happens if you are unable to draw because your library is empty?

In Magic the Gathering, what happens to a player if they get their draw phase, but are unable to draw a card because their library is empty?

They lose the game.

120.4. A player who attempts to draw a card from a library with no cards in it loses the game the next time a player would receive priority.

104.3c If a player is required to draw more cards than are left in his or her library, he or she draws the remaining cards, and then loses the game the next time a player would receive priority.

704.5b If a player attempted to draw a card from a library with no cards in it since the last time state-based actions were checked, he or she loses the game.

• Can you provide any context for why this rule is repeated so many times? If you feel like it, you could also describe the flavor behind these rules. According to this article by Mark Rosewater, losing by drawing on an empty library is essentially a death by going mentally insane. And finally, I can't find anything about this in the basic rules. I find that surprising, given that it is repeated three times in the comp rules. Commented May 14, 2015 at 19:15
• @Rainbolt It is repeated in the sections on Drawing Cards, Losing the Game, and State Based Actions Commented May 14, 2015 at 19:17
• The CompRules are known to repeat a lot of rules in several places, nothing unusual about this rule in particular in that sense. Commented May 14, 2015 at 20:33
• And the three repetitions are covering different details. First one is part of drawing cards (namely, what happens if you can't). Second one enumerates it as part of the list of ways to lose the game. Third one enumerates it as part of state-based actions (in the timing sense). In a sense, it's "When you're drawing cards..." vs "You lose the game if..." vs "While checking state-based actions..." Same result, but different perspectives. Commented May 15, 2015 at 16:09
• @Andrew Of course. The point wasn't that they're the same, just that (at least in the past) there was a very simple rules reference that covered this. It can be nice to try to provide newer players with explanations and resources that are a little more understandable than the full comprehensive rules. Commented Mar 12, 2018 at 18:21

When a player is forced to draw a card and can't they lose the game. This is covered in the comprehensive rules in a few places, due to the rule fitting into multiple places:

Ending the game:

104.3c If a player is required to draw more cards than are left in his or her library, he or she draws the remaining cards, and then loses the game the next time a player would receive priority. (This is a state-based action. See rule 704.)

Drawing a card:

120.4 A player who attempts to draw a card from a library with no cards in it loses the game the next time a player would receive priority. (This is a state-based action. See rule 704.)

State based Actions:

704.5b If a player attempted to draw a card from a library with no cards in it since the last time state-based actions were checked, he or she loses the game.

There are cards that modify this, most notably Laboratory Maniac and Jace, Wielder of Mysteries which change drawing from an empty library from a loss to a win. There are also cards which would stop the draw from happening, like Omen Machine or Maralen of the Mornsong, preventing the state based action. A card like Platinum Angel, which prevents game loss would simply negate the loss and let the game continue.