Yu-Gi-Oh! Trading Card Game Essay 06:
Waboku and Battle Damage

I decided to come up with another essay for my page, because of one little card that people can't yet still get the grasp of. It's not entirely surprising, but people aren't understanding the full rulings of "What exactly is Battle Damage? What does Battle Damage do to my Monsters?" This card is Waboku / Emissary of Harmony.

W/EH's (I'm just going to call it that for the rest of the article; it's easier to type) effect text goes like this:

Any damage inflicted by an opponent's Monster is decreased to 0 during the turn this card is activated.
Believe it or not, this effect only refers to Battle Damage done by a Monster, not other damage done by a Monster (such as Cannon Soldier).

"But what the heck is Battle Damage? I don't see anything written in the rulebook about that." is what some of you are obviously thinking. Unfortunately, it's an extended ruling, rather than something that pops up in a rulebook. Unless you keep up on rulings, it's something that many of you will undoubtedly know nothing about.

You know where it says compare the appropriate statistics for battling Monsters in the rulebook? Well, the "statistic" part is slightly correct, however, it goes a little deeper than that. One thing that you have to remember is:

Battle Damage is ALWAYS done to the opposing Monster during Battle.
How much Battle Damage? If the Monster is in attack mode, it does Battle Damage to the opposing Monster equal to its attack strength. BOTH Monsters will do Battle Damage to each other if both are in attack mode. If one Monster attacks another in defense mode, Battle Damage is done to the defense-mode Monster equal to the attack's attack strength, and damage is done to the attacking Monster equal to the defense-mode Monster's defense strength.

As an example, let's look at a battle between the Blue Eyes White Dragon and Black Magician Girl (for simplicity's sake, let's not use any power ups). Player 1 used the Blue Eyes to attack Player 2's Girl. Both are in attack mode. Once the battle reaches the Damage Step, damage is done to each Monster. Blue Eyes does 3000 Battle Damage (its attack strength) to the Girl. However, the Girl also does 2000 Battle Damage to the Blue Eyes.

At this point, it is actually the Battle Damage that determines if the Monster is destroyed or not. If the Battle Damage is enough to destroy it (as with the Battle Chart in the rulebook), it is destroyed. If it was in attack mode, the "overflow" Battle Damage is done to its controller. If it was in defense mode, the excess is ignored (unless an effect says otherwise). If the defender was in defense mode and the Battle Damage exceeds the attacker's attack strength, it is NOT destroyed.

So, now this is where we start to talk about W/EH. Activating this card will reduce the amount of Battle Damage done by a Monster to 0. What this means is that it won't do ANY Battle Damage to the opposing Monster. Now, I want you to stop and look back at the previous paragraph. Read it again, and come back here.

I think some of you understand the concept here, but I'll go into it just to be sure: if a Monster is attacking your Monster, and you use W/EH on it, your Monster WILL survive. Why? Because no Battle Damage was done to it. Why? Because Battle Damage is actually what determines if the Monster is destroyed or not.

One thing I should point out is that Battle Damage is NOT the same thing as attack strength! If you activate W/EH on a Monster that is attacking your Monster, the Battle Damage that your Monster does will still have to meet or exceed the attacker's attack strength to destroy it.

As another example, let's look at a Holy Elf (attack 800) and Ra Djinn (attack 1800). Both are in attack mode. If the Djinn attacks the Elf, and a Waboku is activated on the Djinn, no Battle Damage will be done to the Elf by the Djinn. However, the Elf will STILL do its 800 Battle Damage to the Djinn. However, since the Djinn's attack strength is still 1800, it would need 1000 more Battle Damage to destroy the Djinn.

How does this work with Monsters that have an equal attack strength, i.e., Djinn versus Djinn? Well, just the same: if Waboku is activated on Djinn 1, it won't do any Battle Damage to Djinn 2. But, Djinn 2 will still do its 1800 Battle Damage to Djinn 1. It's enough Battle Damage to destroy it (equal to or exceeding its attack strength). However, Djinn 2 survives the attack. Why? The Battle Damage done to it was reduced to 0, and Battle Damage is what determines if the Monster is destroyed or not.

Note that this kind of "damage" isn't like other games in which the statistic is reduced by the amount of damage done. For example, if we look at the comparison of the Elf and Djinn (two paragraphs above), 800 Battle Damage was done to the Djinn, but its statistic still remains at 1800. Multiple attacks still won't "add up" the Battle Damage to destroy a Monster. However, the Monster does record that it, indeed, HAS taken Battle Damage this turn. There is a card called Genocide War from Mythological Age expansion that destroys all Monsters that have had Battle Damage done to them at the end of the End Step of the Battle Phase.

Some people will come to my page, read this essays, and think I'm wrong, or want to know if they can believe it as the truth. To those people, DON'T ASSUME THAT YOU KNOW MORE ABOUT THE GAME THAN I DO, IF YOU *JUST* GOT INTO THE GAME. I'm not trying to be arrogant, but there are numerous people out there that think they're experts at the game already, when this game only came out in English about two months ago. I've been with the game, keeping up with it, for a little over two years -- before most people even heard of Yu-Gi-Oh!. Yes, you can take the rulings that I make as true. IF YOU HAVEN'T BEEN INTO THE GAME FOR AT LEAST A YEAR, DON'T THINK YOU'RE EVEN CLOSE TO BEING AN EXPERT! And, to close, not even *I* am an expert at this game.

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