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Assume I'm the active player and I've cast Jared Carthalion, True Heir (alternate link before CMR releases) this turn. Part of his ETB trigger is "You can't become the monarch this turn."

I swing at the monarch. Obviously I can't become the monarch, so the damage trigger resolves without changing the monarch. But if I kill that player, the following rule applies.

718.4. If the monarch leaves the game, the active player becomes the monarch at the same time as that player leaves the game. If the active player is leaving the game or if there is no active player, the next player in turn order becomes the monarch.

I'm the active player, so the rule tries to make me monarch but can't. Is there now no monarch in the game?

Even if there were a ruling or a rules change that made the next eligible player the monarch (I haven't seen any indication of this though), the situation would happen if everyone had their own Jared enter this turn before the monarch died.

So, is this one strange case where there stops being a monarch in the game?

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  • I think there was a similar discussion to this on Limited Resources this week (Episode 570) and I think the answer was that 1) temporarily nobody is the monarch and 2) the next person to do combat damage becomes the monarch. I'd have to listen to LR again though to check. – Philip Kendall Nov 13 '20 at 13:16
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    @PhilipKendall Point 2 would make no sense - you become monarch if your creature deals combat damage to the current monarch - if there is no current monarch, nobody can become monarch that way. – Hackworth Nov 13 '20 at 13:23
  • @Hackworth I was surprised by that as well. It is what was said, but it was wrong; the correction in that tweet just pushes it back to this question again. – Philip Kendall Nov 14 '20 at 13:04
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We probably have to wait until the Rulings under the card in Gatherer, but this seems to be a case where one of Magic's Golden Rules applies:

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.

The game doesn't require that some player is the monarch (it even begins that way) so for the moment there will be no monarch.

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  • I'm always a bit giddy when I see 101.2 used when it actually applies. :) It's so often misused. – ikegami Nov 14 '20 at 20:18
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In that situation, no player would be the monarch.

The game already allows for situations where there is no monarch:

718.1. The monarch is a designation a player can have. There is no monarch in a game until an effect instructs a player to become the monarch.

Rule 718.4 does not list "being able to become monarch" as a requirement for choosing the next monarch - the only requirement is that the player is active and not leaving the game, or that the player is the next player in turn order. The rule does not say to repeat this check until a monarch has been found.

718.4. If the monarch leaves the game, the active player becomes the monarch at the same time as that player leaves the game. If the active player is leaving the game or if there is no active player, the next player in turn order becomes the monarch.

So if the game stops having a monarch because they left the game for any reason, and the designated successor can't become monarch due to Jared's ability, the game simply stops having a monarch until an effect instructs a player to become the monarch as per 718.1.

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  • I don't think the question is alleging it's weird that there's no monarch, but that it's weird that there will stop being a Monarch—which is extremely rare to see! – doppelgreener Nov 13 '20 at 15:12
  • I mean, define "weird". Jared's design lends itself to exactly that situation. It's not even an interaction between Jared and another specific card, it's just what Jared does on its own. – Hackworth Nov 13 '20 at 17:05
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    Weird as a brand new unusual interaction that occurs with only one card (or in some extremely specific edge cases). We're used to games that have a monarch continuing to have one. – doppelgreener Nov 13 '20 at 17:42
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    Fair enough. I haven't heard of monarch until today, so there was no particular weirdness about Jared. – Hackworth Nov 13 '20 at 20:59

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