I'm asking specifically about the lovely Magus of the Balance if that'll help. So for example, If I were to attack with a theoretical 20/20 Savageborn Hydra, and then my opponent declares block with Magus, would my opponent still be able to sacrifice the Magus after declaring block?

  • Its worth noting that this is a good fraction of why Arcbound Ravager was so destructive in the Mirrodin block. Feb 25, 2019 at 15:54
  • @Draco And standard. And to extended and later to some extent modern.
    – Arthur
    Feb 25, 2019 at 16:27
  • As I no longer had a regular group to play with after Kamigawa, as well as not following "the meta" generally, I couldn't make such a statement. ;) I just know that "ravager" and "counter-ravager" were the only decks showing up at national-level tournaments during that block. Feb 25, 2019 at 16:37

1 Answer 1


Yes, that's possible. Declaring blockers is one of the steps of combat, and after declaring blockers the Hydra becomes blocked:

509.1h An attacking creature with one or more creatures declared as blockers for it becomes a blocked creature; one with no creatures declared as blockers for it becomes an unblocked creature. [...] A creature remains blocked even if all the creatures blocking it are removed from combat.

After that, there is time for the players to play spells or abilities:

509.4. Fourth, the active player gets priority. (See rule 116, "Timing and Priority.")

Combat damage is only dealt in the next step:

  1. Combat Damage Step

510.1. First, the active player announces how each attacking creature assigns its combat damage, then the defending player announces how each blocking creature assigns its combat damage. ...

so it's possible to sacrifice the Magus before it's killed by the Hydra, and the Hydra won't deal combat damage to your opponent (unless it somehow gained Trample) since it's still blocked.

  • 5
    The Magus won't deal any combat damage either.
    – ikegami
    Feb 25, 2019 at 16:20
  • 6
    Important side note: If you respond to the sacrifice by somehow giving your creature trample, all the damage would go through - as if it were blocked by a 0/0 creature. Feb 25, 2019 at 18:17

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