Let's say I control the card No Mercy. The card states that whenever a creature successfully deals damage to me it gets destroyed.

Now let us suppose:

  1. I also control Blood Scrivener
  2. I have no cards in hand.
  3. I need to draw a card.

Because of Blood Scrivener's ability, I draw 2 cards and I lose 1 life.

Question: Does the loss of life induced by Blood Scrivener count as damage? (And does it cause Blood Scrivener to be destroyed?)


2 Answers 2


Damage is different than life loss. For players, damage causes life loss.

119.3a Damage dealt to a player by a source without infect causes that player to lose that much life

So no, the Blood Scrivener isn't destroyed.

  • Yes, damage causes loss of life. But what kind of effect is Blood Scrivener's ability? If it is not a damage effect, what is it then?
    – joern
    Commented Feb 27, 2017 at 19:42
  • 1
    @joern "kind" is not an attribute that effects have in Magic
    – KSFT
    Commented Feb 27, 2017 at 20:14
  • Okay. If it is not possible to categorize this any further, then I accept this answer. "life loss" appears to be a self-contained concept.
    – joern
    Commented Feb 27, 2017 at 20:29
  • Personally I think you have quoted the wrong rule to answer his question
    – Wouter
    Commented Mar 1, 2017 at 15:13
  • 118.3. If an effect causes a player to gain life or lose life, that player’s life total is adjusted accordingly.
    – Wouter
    Commented Mar 1, 2017 at 15:16

No. Loss of life is not damage - damage causes loss of life. Blood Scrivener will not cause No Mercy to trigger.

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