Ending phase

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The ending phase is the fifth and final phase of a turn. Prior to the Magic 2010 rules changes, this phase was known as simply the end phase. It consists of the following steps:

From the Comprehensive Rules (Commander 2016 (November 11, 2016))

512. Ending Phase

  • 512.1. The ending phase consists of two steps: end and cleanup.

End step[edit | edit source]

The end step, often referred to as the "end of turn" and previously known as the "end of turn step", is the first step of the ending phase. It is usually the last opportunity for a player to perform any action before the next player's turn starts.[1][2]

From the Comprehensive Rules (Commander 2016 (November 11, 2016))

513. End Step

  • 513.1. The end step has no turn-based actions. Once it begins, the active player gets priority. (See rule 116, “Timing and Priority.”)
  • 513.1a Previously, abilities that triggered at the beginning of the end step were printed with the trigger condition “at end of turn.” Cards that were printed with that text have received errata in the Oracle card reference to say “at the beginning of the end step” or “at the beginning of the next end step.”
  • 513.2. If a permanent with an ability that triggers “at the beginning of the end step” enters the battlefield during this step, that ability won’t trigger until the next turn’s end step. Likewise, if a delayed triggered ability that triggers “at the beginning of the next end step” is created during this step, that ability won’t trigger until the next turn’s end step. In other words, the step doesn’t “back up” so those abilities can go on the stack. This rule applies only to triggered abilities; it doesn’t apply to continuous effects whose durations say “until end of turn” or “this turn.” (See rule 514, “Cleanup Step.”)

The end step was magicthegathering.com's theme for the week of Aug 28th, 2006. It was chosen by Anthony Alongi to announce his departure from the site.

From the glossary of the Comprehensive Rules (Commander 2016 (November 11, 2016))
At End of Turn (Obsolete)
A trigger condition printed on abilities that triggered at the beginning of the end step (which is not the last thing to happen in the turn). Cards that were printed with that text have received errata in the Oracle card reference to say “at the beginning of the end step” or “at the beginning of the next end step.” See rule 513, “End Step.”

Cleanup step[edit | edit source]

The cleanup step is the second and final step of the ending phase. Spells and abilities may be played during this step only if the conditions for any state-based actions exist or if any abilities have triggered. In that case, those state-based actions are performed and/or those abilities go on the stack and the active player gets priority and players may cast spells and activate abilities. Once all players pass priority when the stack is empty, the step repeats.

From the Comprehensive Rules (Commander 2016 (November 11, 2016))

514. Cleanup Step

  • 514.1. First, if the active player’s hand contains more cards than his or her maximum hand size (normally seven), he or she discards enough cards to reduce his or her hand size to that number. This turn-based action doesn’t use the stack.
  • 514.2. Second, the following actions happen simultaneously: all damage marked on permanents (including phased-out permanents) is removed and all “until end of turn” and “this turn” effects end. This turn-based action doesn’t use the stack.
  • 514.3. Normally, no player receives priority during the cleanup step, so no spells can be cast and no abilities can be activated. However, this rule is subject to the following exception:
  • 514.3a At this point, the game checks to see if any state-based actions would be performed and/or any triggered abilities are waiting to be put onto the stack (including those that trigger “at the beginning of the next cleanup step”). If so, those state-based actions are performed, then those triggered abilities are put on the stack, then the active player gets priority. Players may cast spells and activate abilities. Once the stack is empty and all players pass in succession, another cleanup step begins.

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Mark Rosewater. (August 28, 2006.) "Beginning At the End", Daily MTG, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast. [dead link]
  2. Mike Turian. (September 01, 2006.) "We All Pay Our Debts in the End", Daily MTG, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast. [dead link]