I am new to playing Magic, and I'm trying to teach my 9 year old daughter and father what I know (which needs lots of clarifying). I've read several of the the questions posted on this forum and have learned a great deal. So, I'd like to post one of my own concerning the sorcery Declare Dominance. Here's the situation:

I attacked my opponent with Gravewaker (5/5) and destroyed their Sun Sentinel (2/2) during the combat phase. I then decided to cast the sorcery Declare Dominance during the second main phase and target my Gravewaker making it a (8/8). The directions on the Declare Dominance card state that all creatures able to block it this turn do so. I interpreted this to mean that all creatures my opponent had under their control, which were not tapped, were required to attack my Gravewaker (8/8). So, does this create a second combat phase? I assumed it did, and I made my opponent's Pyromantic Pilgrim (3/1) block my Gravewaker (8/8), which I in turn destroyed. Was this a correct use of the Declare Dominance sorcery?


  • 1
    Hi @Ryan, I think there might be another point of confusion hidden in your question. If you attacked with Gravewalker, Sun Sentinel should not have been able to block unless some effect gave it flying or reach (or took flying away from Gravewalker). If Sun Sentinel didn't block, it doesn't make sense that it was destroyed. You can ask another question if you're not sure about this.
    – mbocek
    Dec 31, 2018 at 21:21

1 Answer 1


This was incorrect. Declare Dominance does not create a second attack phase. In order to do that, it would need to specifically state that it does, such as “there is an additional combat phase.”

The key words here are “able to do so”. In order to be able to block a creature, that creature must be attacking you. So if you are not attacking them with your Gravewalker, then they are not able to block it.

Declare Dominance would normally need of be cast before the part of a turn where blockers are declared in order to have that part of its ability work.

You can cast Declare Dominance after the combat phase, but it will have no impact other than giving a creature +3/+3, which on its own won’t help.

Also, note that you can never attack a creature, so the idea of making your opponent's creatures attack your Gravewalker doesn’t make sense. Declare Dominance forces them to block your Gravewalker. Blocking and attacking are 2 separate things. You attack your opponent with creatures, and then they choose which creatures to use to block your attacking creatures.

To add more info based on comments... Declare Dominance’s ability does not create a one-shot effect; which is something that happens immediately and then is over. Rather, it creates 2 continuous effects that both last until the end of turn. A continuous effect is an ongoing thing that lasts for a particular duration. One of them gives the target +3/+3; while the other makes it so that for the rest of the turn, any time a creature could block the target creature; it has to do so. It doesn’t cause any attacking or blocking immediately; it just changes the rules for assigning blockers for the rest of the turn.

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    Also note that Gravewaker has flying, so Pyromantic Pilgrim can't block it anyway even if you cast Declare Dominance before combat. Dec 28, 2018 at 9:51
  • Also, if your creature had a restriction like "cannot be blocked by more than one creature", then that restriction holds true even with Declare Dominance in effect. Dec 28, 2018 at 15:45
  • Thank you for all your replies. So, what I understand is that Declare Dominance does not create an additional attack phase. However, because it's a sorcery I must play it during my First Main Phase. As a result, I would do the following: First, pay the mana to cast Declare Dominance during the First Main Phase Second, declare creatures I will attack with, and which one is targeted by Declare Dominance. Third, my opponent then must block my attacking targeted creature with Declare Dominance with all of their creatures that are available to block. Is this correct?
    – Ryan Kowal
    Dec 28, 2018 at 19:02
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    @RyamKowal Not quite. You must fully cast Declare Doninance in the first main phase; including targeting a creature. This creature will not yet be an attacking creature. Later, in the combat phase, if you attack with the creature you chose, all opponent’s creatures that can block it must do so. Declare Doninance’s effect lasts during the whole turn; it’s not a thing that immediately causes your opponent to block the creature. It will cause them to block it later.
    – GendoIkari
    Dec 29, 2018 at 1:18
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    @RyanKowal Sorceries can be cast in both Main Phases. It's simply that "must be blocked if able" only matters during the combat phase, so casting it during the second main phase is almost never useful. Dec 29, 2018 at 7:20

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