Trample (This creature can deal excess combat damage to player or planeswalker it's attacking.) |
Trample (This spell can deal excess damage to its target's controller.)
Trample is a keyword ability that changes the rules for assigning damage in the Combat Damage Step. An attacker with trample can deal excess damage to the defending player or planeswalker even if it is blocked. Trample is primary placed in green on the color wheel, but red's share has been growing over time. Any color is allowed access to trample if the creature is large enough and of a higher rarity.
History[edit | edit source]
Trample was introduced in Alpha.   and is generally printed on creatures with high power, such as Crash of Rhinos, or creatures with the ability to increase their power, such as Keldon Battlewagon. It has also been printed on small creatures with no intrinsic ability to gain power, such as on Defiant Elf, but these are rare.
Trample was removed from the core set with the Sixth Edition. Later on, WotC introduced a vertical cycle of creatures known as "super tramplers" in the Starter 1999 starter-level set, which were all reprinted in 7th Edition. Lone Wolf, Pride of Lions and Thorn Elemental each can do combat damage to defending players as though they weren't blocked. It is said that this ability was created because Wizards thought trample was too confusing, yet this new ability wasn't taken too well in its place. Consequently, Trample was brought back in Ninth Edition.
|“|| Three things combined to get trample back in the Core Set with Ninth Edition. One, newer players were running into trample in expert-level sets and not knowing how it worked. Most keywords without reminder text in black-bordered sets --flying, swampwalk, first strike, etc. --are clearly explained in the Core Set. But trample (and protection) were not, meaning the first time players saw it, they were clueless. Two, our replacement for trample (the Thorn Elemental ability) was not particularly easy to understand either. Three, our rules people came up with good reminder text for the mechanic, allowing it to exist happily in the Core Set.
We're not trying to dumb the game down. In fact, we want the Core Set to be a teaching tool, which means we want it to cover as much ground as realistically possible, which is why we worked so hard for a way to get trample (and protection and equipment) into Ninth Edition. 
In the silver-bordered set Unstable, Trample appeared for the first time on a non-creature spell (Super-Duper Death Ray). Chances of the rules being altered to allow trample on spells in black border are low.
Reminder text[edit | edit source]
The Ninth Edition reminder text read: Trample (If this creature would assign enough damage to its blockers to destroy them, you may have it assign the rest of its damage to defending player or planeswalker.)
Starting with Magic Origins, it gained a new reminder text: Trample (This creature can deal excess combat damage to defending player or planeswalker while attacking.). There was no change to how trample worked, the reminder text was just changed for clarity and brevity. 
Rules[edit | edit source]
Example[edit | edit source]
Enchantments that grant just Trample[edit | edit source]
All your creatures
See also[edit | edit source]
References[edit | edit source]
- Mark Rosewater. (June 5, 2017.) “Mechanical Color Pie 2017”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Brady Dommermuth. (June 01, 2009.) “Mechanically Inclined”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Mark Rosewater. (June 8, 2015.) “Evergreen Eggs & Ham”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Aaron Forsythe. (November 8, 2005.) “Ask Wizards”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Mark Rosewater. (November 22, 2017.) “Unstable FAQAWASLFAQPAFTIDAWABIAJTBT”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Mark Rosewater. (April 17, 2018.) "What are the chances of the rules being altered to allow trample on spells (in black border)?", Blogatog, Tumblr.
- Wizards of the Coast. (July 8, 2015.) “Magic Origins Release Notes”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Mark Rosewater. (November 16, 2017.) "Thank you for Super Duper Death Ray.", Blogatog, Tumblr.
- Eli Shiffrin. (April 13, 2018.) “Dominaria Oracle Changes”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.