Let's say I have deck without sleeves, and some cards in my deck are heads down(not upside-down, you don't see the images, but can recognize that some card backs are head down, while others not).

Can my opponent force me to look through my whole deck to fix that?

It happened in my club at least twice. I did not cheat, neither of us who were forced to do that make heads down cards on purpose(we shuffle like that, he insists that those cards may be lands or winconditions), but it eats lots of time to sort them back and is just annoying.

Can I at least force a player that don't like heads down cards(or judge?) to fix that instead of me, if it is in the rules?

  • "We shuffle like that" - not sure if you mean you always do that or if you just accidentally did it that time, but whatever your shuffling method is, you can presumably do it without turning any cards around. Probably worth paying attention to in the future!
    – Cascabel
    Aug 14, 2016 at 16:39
  • @Jefromi that's how I do it to shuffle most effectively using least time. When I gather cards after random pile shuffle there are lots of heads down cards. Aug 14, 2016 at 16:43
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    Well, might want to practice a different method, then. You do need to be able to randomize your deck and keep all the cards turned the same way. (Also, if by "random pile shuffle" you mean scattering and regathering cards, that's going to be prone to damaging sleeves too, which is another way to end up with illegally marked cards.)
    – Cascabel
    Aug 14, 2016 at 16:49

1 Answer 1


Nobody but judges are allowed to look at your deck during the game. You will need a judge to fix your deck.

During a game, you would obviously not be allowed to look through your deck unless an effect would allow you to.

401.2. Each library must be kept in a single face-down pile. Players can’t look at or change the order of cards in a library.

In a tournament setting, your deck would count as marked, and you would get at least a Warning for it, possibly a game loss:

Tournament Error — Marked Cards

A player’s cards are marked or oriented in a way that could potentially give an advantage to that player.

Penalty - Warning

The Head Judge has the option to upgrade this penalty to a Game Loss if he or she believes that a player noticing the pattern of markings would clearly compromise the integrity of the game.

Only a judge would be allowed to fix your deck as a remedy to the infraction.

If the error was not reported, and the Head Judge is convinced that you knew it was illegal, and that you intended to gain an advantage from the cards' orientation, the infraction would probably be upgraded to Cheating, and you would have to get a disqualification.

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    I'm not sure if it's worth noting that in an informal setting, this can be fixed without revealing any of the cards in the library
    – David Z
    Aug 14, 2016 at 11:36
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    In an informal setting people can do whatever, but answering that is not going to be much use to anybody. that's why I chose to answer for the only setting that rules exist for, i.e. a tournament setting
    – Hackworth
    Aug 14, 2016 at 11:57
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    @Hacksworth You can follow all the comprehensive rules outside of a tournament setting or using any tournament- specific rules.
    – GendoIkari
    Aug 14, 2016 at 12:36
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    Not at all, because you still have to follow the rules. The better takeaway would be that upside down cards are illegal; so in a casual setting, it would be handled however your group best deals with an illegal situation.
    – GendoIkari
    Aug 14, 2016 at 13:02
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    One doesn't have to look at deck to fix it. The problem is with back side. You can fix it while looking only at back side.
    – Deo
    Aug 14, 2016 at 21:23

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