Fast effect timing
This article may require cleanup to meet this wiki's standards.
- 1 Official Source:
- 2 Fast Effect Timing
- 3 The Fast Effect Timing Flowchart
- 4 Outside Elements which affect the operation of the Chart
- 5 Examples:
- 6 See also:
Fast Effect Timing
The rules of fast effect timing govern which player has the right to act at any given point in time.
Usually, the turn player retains the right to act, which they can either choose to exercise, or pass the right to act to the opponent. Whilst a Chain is being created, the player who did not activate the most recent Chain Link has the right to act.
At all times during a Duel, the game state will be at some point on the fast effect timing chart. Play begins in Box A of the chart, and players proceed by following the appropriate arrows depending on what action has occurred.
The Fast Effect Timing Flowchart
All Spell/Trap effects that trigger activate in the yellow box, not just those of Continuous Spells/Traps.
Turn Player Actions
Every Phase and Step begins in Box A of the chart. The game state is open, and the turn player has complete freedom of action. Many actions can only be performed at this time. When the game state is open, the turn player may elect to perform any action (including activating a fast effect), or pass to the opponent.
- Normal Summon
- Set a card
- Perform a Special Summon that does not start a Chain
- Change a monster's battle position
- Draw a card for your normal draw during the Draw Phase
- Declare an attack
- Activate a Spell Speed 1 card or effect
Once an action is performed, and you leave Box A of the chart, the game state is no longer "open", and does not become "open" again until you return to Box A.
All effects that are triggered by an event (Trigger Effects of monsters, and effects of Spell and Trap Cards that trigger) activate in the yellow box on the chart. If multiple triggered effects want to activate simultaneously, build the chain in accordance with the rules for Simultaneous Effects. Then, proceed to Box D, and continue building the chain as you normally would, beginning with the player who did not activate the most recent chain link.
If an event triggers a triggered effect, but you are not yet in the yellow box of the chart, you must wait until you reach this point in time on the chart until you can activate these effects. Not all triggered effects can be activated if this occurs, see "If... You Can VS When... You Can".
After a Chain resolves
Once you have resolved a Chain (that is, you are moving out of Box D of the chart), the game state is NOT "open". You first follow the arrow to the yellow box, and check for triggered effects. Then, continue following the arrows as appropriate. If a triggered effect(s) is activated, proceed to Box D. If not, players are given the opportunity to activate fast effects in Boxes B and C. If they choose to do so, proceed to Box D and repeat the process. Only once a Chain has completely resolved, AND no chain is being formed, AND both players pass the right to activate fast effects does the game state move back into Box A and become "open" again.
Outside Elements which affect the operation of the Chart
As with all things in Yu-Gi-Oh!, the chart does not operate in isolation with other game rules. Rather, they all co-exist to complement each other.
Tournament Policy: Slow Play
Konami tournament policy prohibits playing at an unreasonable pace and causing delays in the game and from wasting time in a match. As a result, although it may appear as though players could theoretically be stuck in an endless "loop" by constantly passing the right to act back and forth between each other, tournament policy steps in, preventing players from "double passing".
This means that if the turn player passes the right to act in Box A, and the opponent passes in Box E, and a player does not agree to enter the next phase/step, the next time the player has the right to act, they must perform an action. If they do not, they must agree to enter the next phase/step.
Shortcuts - Fast Effect Timing in Practice
In practice, the fast effect timing chart is never followed explicitly to the letter of the law. Playing exactly as per the chart constantly would be extremely tedious, and no match would ever finish on time. This is where the spirit of the law, and the use of shortcuts come into play.
A shortcut is when players agree to skip one or more "passes" of the right to act in order to advance the state of play. For example, a player might draw for their normal draw and ask their opponent for permission to enter Main Phase 1, effectively also asking them if they would like to perform any action at any point in time between the normal draw, and starting Main Phase 1. The opponent may then choose to act in that time (for example, during the standby phase) or agree to enter Main Phase 1.
This eliminates the need for players to communicate that they do not wish to respond to the normal draw, that they then pass, then agree to enter the Standby Phase, then pass again, then agree to enter the Main Phase 1, resulting in a more enjoyable match that is played at a reasonable pace.
After a Chain Resolves
Scenario: Player A intends to activate "Reinforcement of the Army", adding a "Goblindbergh" from his Deck to his hand, then Normal Summon "Goblindbergh" and activate its effect. Player B has a set "Mind Crush".
Player A enters Main Phase 1, and is thus in Box A of the chart. Player A activates "Reinforcement of the Army". This is an action that starts a chain, so we move to Box D of the chart. Assuming neither player wishes to add any further Chain Links, the effect of "Reinforcement of the Army" resolves, and Player A adds a "Goblindbergh" to his hand.
However, before Player A can perform a Normal Summon, which is an action that can only be performed when the game state is "open" (Box A), first, we enter the yellow box and check for any triggered effects (assume there are none in this scenario), and then we move to Box B. The turn player, Player A, passes. Enter Box C, and now the opponent has the opportunity to activate a fast effect. Player B now activates "Mind Crush", before play returns to Box A and before "Goblindbergh" can be Normal Summoned.
Activating an Ignition Effect
During the Main Phase, in Box A of the chart, Player A Normal Summons "Rescue Rabbit". This is an action that does not start a Chain, so play proceeds into the yellow box, and triggered effects are checked for. There are none, so players move to Box B, where the turn player may activate a fast effect. As the effect of "Rescue Rabbit" is a Spell Speed 1 Ignition Effect, not a fast effect, they must wait until they return to Box A in order to activate "Rescue Rabbit"'s effect, so Player A passes. Now in Box C, Player B can activate the Quick Effect of "Effect Veiler", a fast effect.
Performing an Action that Triggers an Effect
Possible Outcome 1: In Box A of the chart, Player A Normal Summons "Elemental HERO Stratos", an action that does not start a Chain. Moving to the yellow box, Player A activates the Trigger effect of "Elemental HERO Stratos", then moves to Box D and continues building the Chain with fast effects. Player A activated the last effect on the Chain, so Player B now has the right to act, and chains their Set "Torrential Tribute". Player A could now activate "Super Polymerization" as Chain Link 3.
Possible Outcome 2: In Box A of the chart, Player A Normal Summons "Elemental HERO Stratos", an action that does not start a Chain. In the yellow box, Player A opts not to activate the Trigger effect of "Elemental HERO Stratos". Players now proceed to Box B, where Player A now activates the Set "Super Polymerization" as Chain Link 1.
Performing an Action Without a Spell Speed
Player A Normal Summons "Elemental HERO Neos", an action without a Spell Speed. Following the chart, the players enter the yellow box and check for triggered effects. There are none, so they move to Box B, and Player A, the turn player, has the right to activate a fast effect first in response to an action without Spell Speed. Player A can choose to activate "Super Polymerization" as Chain Link 1, before the opponent has the opportunity to activate their Set "Trap Hole".