Boros Battleshaper's ability reads

At the beginning of each combat, up to one target creature attacks or blocks this combat if able and up to one target creature can't attack or block this combat.

My opponent and I each have a Boros Battleshaper, and my opponent is attacking. If she targets one of my other creatures to prevent it from blocking, can I use my Battleshaper’s ability to ‘force’ the effected creature to block?

  • "attacks or blocks this combat if able" Making a creature unable to attack or block means the Battleshaper can't force it to do either, as the Battleshaper's own ability says. It doesn't let creatures who previously couldn't attack or block do those things. It simply says that when the turn comes for a player to choose which creatures to attack or block with, some of that choice is made for him.
    – Arthur
    Commented Feb 27, 2018 at 12:48

1 Answer 1


No. If you tried, then the creature would have both “blocks this combat if able” and “can’t block this combat”. The latter would win. First off, the first one says “if able”, and it isn’t able. A tapped creature wouldn’t be able to block for the same reason.

Second, even if it didn’t say “if able”, it wouldn’t matter because “can’t” always wins.

  1. The Magic Golden Rules

101.2. When a rule or effect allows or directs something to happen, and another effect states that it can’t happen, the “can’t” effect takes precedence.

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