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|Reminder Text:||Banding (Any creatures with banding, and up to one without, can attack in a band. Bands are blocked as a group. If any creatures with banding you control are blocking or being blocked by a creature, you divide that creature's combat damage, not its controller, among any of the creatures it's being blocked by or is blocking.)|
|Statistics:|| 47 cards|
Artifact 15% Land 13% Multicolor 4%
57% 9% 2%
|Gatherer search for "Banding"|
Description[edit | edit source]
By nature, this is primarily a white ability (distributing damage - or another way of preventing damage by having it go to another creature). Banding was first printed in Alpha ("Bands" was the original keyword used to represent the ability).
While acknowledging that Banding was flavorful and effective if used properly, it has been effectively abandoned by designers for being overly confusing. The last basic set in which Banding appeared was the Fifth Edition , and the last tournament-legal set was Weatherlight. The most recent card to be printed with banding is Greater Morphling in Unhinged.
Rules[edit | edit source]
Attacking and Blocking[edit | edit source]
Attacking[edit | edit source]
Any number of attacking creatures with banding can join together with up to one attacking creature without banding; the defending player must either block the entire band or allow it to be unblocked. If a blocking creature can block any one creature in the band, it can block the entire band.
In addition, if an attacking creature with banding becomes blocked, the attacking player chooses how damage from the blocking creatures is assigned.
Blocking[edit | edit source]
When blocking, if at least one creature blocking an attacker has banding, then the defending player may choose how the creature blocked by the creature(s) with banding assigns combat damage. This is a change from the normal rule in which the attacking player always chooses how his or her attacking creatures assign combat damage.
Cards that grant Banding[edit | edit source]
Wall creatures you control
- Fortified Area (walls only)
Bands with other[edit | edit source]
A variant of banding, "bands with other" restricts banding to working with other creatures of a given type or quality (such as creatures that have a certain name). However, before the Magic 2010 rules changes (which came several years later than any cards featuring the ability), it was probably the most counter-intuitive ability in the game, because instead of allowing banding of with creatures of the given type, it only allowed banding with creatures with the same "bands with other" ability.
There are eight cards in the Legends set with "Bands with other" in the card text. Five banding lands can give the ability to legendary creatures, one creature can create tokens with the ability (Master of the Hunt) and two cards can remove the ability (Shelkin Brownie and Tolaria).
There are no tournament-legal creature cards that have "bands with other" ability. The only creature card actually printed with "bands with other" ability is Old Fogey in Unhinged. Mark Rosewater rates the mechanic an 11 on the Storm Scale of 10.
Examples[edit | edit source]
[edit | edit source]
- Mark Rosewater. (November 26, 2014.) Drive to Work #179 - Banding (podcast) at wizards.com.
References[edit | edit source]
- Brady Dommermuth. (June 01, 2009.) “Mechanically Inclined”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Mark Rosewater. (Dec 1, 2003.) “The Baby and the Bathwaters”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Mark Rosewater. (June 8, 2015.) “Evergreen Eggs & Ham”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Mark Gottlieb. (March 06, 2002.) “Absurd or Ridiculous? You Decide”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Mark Rosewater. (November 10, 2003.) “Make No Mistake”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Magic Arcana. (Dec 10, 2009.) “Friendly Goblin”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Mark Rosewater. (July 11, 2017.) "I remember you rated one mechanic an 11 on the storm scale.", Blogatog, Tumblr.