Stop Sign Series Part IV
All About In-game Yields
So far in this series, I've talked about how to set stops, steps you might want to set stops for, and yields in the Game Play Settings. Now I'm going to talk about the last piece of this puzzle: the in-game yields.
As with many of the Magic Online settings, even though there's not much to setting and removing in-game yields, they can make a major impact on your games.
Just like your Game Play Settings yields, the in-game yields tell Magic Online how to behave when certain things happen during a game. The major difference is that your Game Play Settings cover a broad range of situations, while the in-game yields are for specific abilities.
What Are In-Game Yields?In-game yields are the yields you set by right-clicking on abilities on the stack. When you do, you get two options: to always yield to that ability, or to yield to that ability until the end of the turn.
These yields affect only that ability on that card. If another copy of that card or another card with the same ability is put into play, you have to set another yield for it. Also, if you set a yield for one ability on a card that has two, the yield only works for the ability on the stack.
Why Would I Want To Set This Type Of Yield?
The simple answer to why you'll want to use these yields is to save time. Every time an activated or triggered ability goes on the stack, you have to click OK to pass priority. If you're never going to do anything in response to an ability, you can save valuable seconds by letting it resolve without waiting for you to click OK.
Even if you're not playing a timed game, these yields can cut down on the annoyance factor of triggered abilities. Enchantments like Righteous Cause are one reason you'd want to set a yield. Chances are, you're not going to do anything about your opponent gaining life when you declare your attackers. However, if you attack with a lot of creatures at the same time, Righteous Cause triggers once for each creature, meaning a lot of OK-clicking for all players involved.
Another time you might want to set these yields is in a team game like Two-Headed Giant. Usually you're not going to respond to abilities controlled by your teammates. Because of how priority is passed in multiplayer games, however, you do have to pass priority every time he or she uses an ability or has an ability that triggers. Using these yields helps cut down the length of your multiplayer games.
What Good Is Setting A Yield Until The End Of The Turn?It may seem less than useful to only set a yield until the end of a turn, but there are situations where you'll want to. Any time there's an ability that triggers multiple times in a turn and, while you don't have a response in your hand right then, you have an answer somewhere in your deck, you'll want a stop like this. If you draw that answer next turn, the ability can't be used without you having an opportunity to play.
For example, if your opponent has a Nantuko Husk in play and starts sacrificing creatures to it, you may not have anything to stop it. Somewhere in your deck, however, is a Smother. You may want to let the ability resolve for the rest of the turn without clicking OK, but want a chance to respond if you draw the Smother later on. (Granted, if you're opponent is clearing his or her side of the board, you'll probably wait for resolution of the ability anyway.)
How Do I Remove An In-game Yield? Removing an in-game yield is an all-or-nothing proposition--you can't remove just one. To remove your in-game yields, right-click on the background of the Duel screen and select Remove auto yields. This cancels all yields you've set this game.
Magic Online is set up to work this way because it would be too complicated to keep track of every possible yield in the game--not for the computer, but for the player. If you had to pick each individual yield you'd like to clear, you might pick the wrong instance and cause mistakes in your play. So it's safer to let you re-set the yields you want after clearing them all.
Conclusion Being aware of your stops and yields can enhance your gameplay and reduce the chance of mistakes. Like any other part of the Magic game, it takes practice to learn how to use them most effectively. Remember that when you're testing decks against casual opponents and you'll be ready when you get into a big game.