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TecNoPhi presents the FiveShards Ruby Cup, Season 2!

We are pleased to be able to share with you the details of the FiveShards Ruby Cup, Season 2 sponsored by TecNoPhi!

On July 18th-19th, many shard-masters will compete for a chance to take home the coveted Ruby Cup presented by TecNoPhi; this is the second tournament in Season 2 of the FiveShards Shard Cup Series (Note: we still would like to get two new sponsors for this season, if you are interested, contact us at!).

The Ruby Cup is standard constructed—that is, all current PVP sets are legal including Armies of Myth.

Register here at the Battlefy page. Confirmation begins at 8:00am PDT (You must pre-register and provide a deck list) and the tournament starts at 9:00am PDT. To confirm, you must log in to Battlefy, go to the tournament, and push the confirmation button. If you do not confirm your registration prior to the tournament beginning, the tournament will drop you and we cannot re-add you to the tournament.

The top 8 will begin promptly at 10:00am PDT on Sunday, July 19th.


1st: 48 Set 3 Packs
2nd: 32 Set 3 Packs
3rd-4th: 16 Set 3 Packs
5th-8th: 10 Set 3 Packs
9th: 8 Set 3 Packs
10th-16th: 6 Set 3 Packs
17th-32nd:  3 Set 3 Packs

Random Door Prizes:

Set 3 Primal Pack
Set 3 Primal Pack
Set 3 Primal Pack

We will be drawing the door prizes at the conclusion of round 2.

Specific Rules

1. We will stream the tournament from We will cast all pairings, coverage, and rulings on this channel. Players should have it open/accessible to hear updated news. If you are casting the game, we highly recommend you use a card blocker and/or broadcast delay to enable us to do feature match coverage.

2. Reserves and Decklists: We allow a 15-card reserve. Consequently, we require decklists of all participants. Decklists must include the Champion, 60+ card main deck, 0 or 15 card reserve (must be exactly zero or fifteen), and any gems used in the initial deck configuration. All participants must submit their decklists to us using this form (link) by 8:00am PDT (WorldClock) on the morning of the tournament, July 18th. Do not post screenshots. Submissions must be entered in text. We will post the full set of decklists after the final round completes and also highlight the top 8 decklists. You may change gems during reserves/sideboarding, but not in-between matches.

Template for Decklist


4x Card1
4x Card2
4x Card3
2x Card4 (Prime Ruby of Destruction)
So forth

4x More cards
4x More cards

3. Confirmation: Confirmation begins at 8:00am PDT (WorldClock) and the tournament starts at 9:00am PDT (WorldClock). To confirm your participation, just log into Battlefy at any point within an hour prior to the start of the tournament (8:00-9:00am PDT) and click the “Confirm” Button. If you do not confirm your registration prior to the tournament beginning, the tournament will automatically drop you; we cannot add dropped players once the tournament starts.

4. Matches: If enabled, matches will occur in the best 2 of 3 matches through the client. Each match will be determined by the player that wins two games out of three. The match ends when one player wins two games. The client will decide the turn order in the first game using a coin flip. The loser of the previous game will determine if they play or draw in game.

5. Reserves: If enabled, the client will handle this. If not, then Players get 2 minutes to side in and out their cards.

6. End-of-time Procedure: For most cases, time will occur through the client. If a person runs out of time, they lose the match no matter if they have won a previous game in the match. In rare cases, we may have to restart a match. In those cases, people will follow the end of time procedures as follows:  When time is over, the current turn will finish and the players will play five more turns (combined, not each.) If neither player has won two games at this point and neither player has more wins, then the match is a draw. If, after 5 turns, the match is 1-0, then the player with one win wins the match.

7. Slow Play: If in a best-of-three match via the client, slow play does not matter. However, if two players cannot use the client, then we offer the following procedure: Since we are not watching all the games in person, it is difficult for us to determine slow play. However, if you are streaming and your opponent seems to be intentionally playing slow, call a judge over to your stream and we will observe the match. The escalation of penalties for slow play is: warning, time reduction for the offending player’s clock, game loss, match loss.

8. Bugged Game Policy: Unfortunately, there are times when the game may substantially bug out or make it impossible to preserve the state of the game. If the players can preserve the state of the game, they should make efforts to do so. If the game bugs in a way that the players cannot agree to play through, neither player has fatal damage on the board/hands (if streaming or through provided screenshots), neither player is willing to concede the match, and the bug prevents the match from proceeding, then players are to restart the game. Players do not get extra time for bugged games.

A. Unfortunately, there are several bugs where we cannot confirm the precise steps needed to replicate. In interactive cases, we will have to treat several bugs “as is”. That is, play will proceed as if the bug were intended. Unfortunately, the number of existing bugs that we were unable to catch suggests that the number of restarts would be higher than necessary for the tournament.

B. If a bug fundamentally breaks the state of the game, we may have the players restart the game or match. The threshold for this categorization is higher and may include instances where a player’s self interactions trigger the bug.

C. If you find an interactive bug in your match that we have not listed, please report it to us. We will try to keep a running list of “as is” bugs on the FiveShards website for quick reference. Additionally, if you find a bug that fundamentally negates your opponents cards, not only are you obligated to inform the judging team, but you should inform your future opponents. For example, if we were to discover the Nibbler bug mid-tournament, it would be the player’s obligation to tell each future opponent that their debuff effects will not work on the card.

9. The administrators of the tournament are also the judges for the event. For the Ruby Cup, the head judge is Zubrin and we will have a few judges on hand that will exist as the first point of contact. We will have a procedures and penalties document up prior to the tournament.

10. If your deck is built around exploiting a bugged card that is clearly bugged in your own testing, you will forfeit the match you are currently in and we will drop you from the tournament. Since this is early in the set, there is a possibility that people will discover bugs not yet reported. All such bugs should be reported to the tournament administrators for banning consideration (as well as CZE). We strive to ensure the integrity of the tournament.

11. Deck Checks: If a player suspects that an opponent is playing with cards that are not in their original configuration for game one, or if they are playing with cards that are not in their decklist or reserves, the player can immediately ask for a deck check. A tournament judge will then cross-check the suspected cards with the submitted decklist. If the player is found in violation, they automatically lose the game. If a player is found to make the mistake a third time, we will escalate the penalty to a match loss. Players may request two deck checks throughout the tournament and checks resulting in penalties will not count against the player’s total number of checks.

12. Any player caught cheating or attempting to cheat will be dealt with at the discretion of tournament organizers, including but not limited to disqualification, banning from future events, and withholding prizes.

13. Feature Match Policy: If you are playing in the Ruby Cup and are streaming, we take that as consent that you are willing to allow us to use your stream as a feature match on the main channel ( If, however, you would not like us to do this, please let us know as soon as possible and we will not host your stream. If you would like, you can use our official card blocker here:


14. To drop from the tournament, you will submit a request to us via this form. You need to use your safeword (entered with deck registration) to properly drop from the tournamentNew Rule for Season 2: If a player decides to end the tournament early, but does not fill out the drop form to remove themselves from the pool (or does not individually remove themselves from the tournament via battlefy) they will lose 1 Shard Cup point. Please drop from the tournament so we do not have any dead games.

15. The play order for the first game in each match of the top 8 is determined by seeding.

Banned and Restricted List

We do not expect to ban any cards quite yet, but we will issue warnings and bans if we find any cards that are degenerate to the tournament experience. Additionally, since the client can play best of three matches, we will treat card interactions “As is” and play through what bugs may exist.

Frequently Asked Questions

Who is the sponsor for this tournament?

Tecnophi! He sponsored the second tournament last season as well. He is a swell community member.

You can sponsor Cups? How do I get in on that action?

As of May 24th, we will be accepting new sponsors for Season 2 of the Cup Tournament Series. We ask sponsors for roughly $560 in prize support to get their name attached to the largest tournament series in Hex. We will promote a particular guild, recruitment drive, link to some other function, or even a product if we can mutually agree on sponsorship. If you are interested, email us at I recommend emailing us soon as Season 1 sponsorships were gone within the first month!

I would rather help you all run the event than play, is there any chance you are looking for a few extra hands to help run things?

Absolutely. We would like for people to play if they would prefer doing that, but we also realize that even with the four of us last time, it would be easier to run things with a couple extra hands on deck. Primarily, at this point, we are interested in getting people to help us run judging. We think there will be fewer decisions this time around, but we want to make sure those casting the matches are not also embroiled in judging decisions. We may also be willing to enlist a few additional people to help shoutcast matches, but space for that is limited at the moment. If you want to help judge or have other ways you are interested in contributing, please do email us at We will have a formal call for judges up within the next week.

Really? You are making us play with set 3 cards within 4 days after the new set release? Are you some sort of monster, devil, or void society member.


You know it is release celebration weekend then, right?

Yup! The tournament date has been on the books for months and we already rescheduled it due to the charity event; we are not going to push or cancel this event. Some players may try to play both this tournament and release events simultaneously. We caution you to watch your time.

I am not pleased with your decisions.

That is neither a question nor frequently asked.

I am not pleased with your decisions?


What if set 3 gets delayed?

Then the tournament format will be set 1 + set 2 constructed. The prizes will be in Set 3 boosters, however, and we will send those to the winners as soon as we have them on hand!

Michael Allen is a competitive HexTCG player, co-host of the 2 Turns Ahead podcast, and founder and moderator of the Hex Subreddit.

20 Comments on TecNoPhi presents the FiveShards Ruby Cup, Season 2!

  1. Ok so you include set 3 4 days after the release there? I’m sorry but i don’t feel it’s right.

  2. It’s going to drive prices up unfortunately. But they’ve already changed the date before =s.

  3. pirces will be insane…i dont like it either…also there is the potential for unexpected bug exploits that could not be catched in time…i know you rescheduled before but this one is asking for problems

  4. In all fairness, I’d leave it at least two weeks till after Set 3 release. That should give enough time for glitched card interactions to be worked out and prices to stabilise. This is just my opinion, props all the same to you guys for running the shard cup tournies.

  5. if rescheduling is out of the question the other (and imo still better) option would be to ban set 3 cards for this tourney

  6. For what it is worth, I REALLY enjoy playing formats where the set is still extremely new. Creates a somewhat chaotic meta where 50% of the players just play exact replicas of the previous season’s decklists while the other 50% tries to experiment and get wacky. My kind of scenario…

    …that said I understand that it inflates prices and some people have an issue with that, which is totally fair, but that isn’t an issue to me. I say that not because I have deep pockets (which I most certainly do not) but because I just consider it to be par for the course.

    On the more daunting side bugs might be an issue, but I still stand pretty firmly on the side that embraces this weekend as a tourney date rather than requesting a change.

  7. Since the rules still include draws, can you still do intentional draws in the last round?

  8. I dont see why you should be forbidden to do intentional draws. Its legit and happens in magic tournaments all the time. On another note. Its not only the inflation of card prices and the almost unavoidable bug problem but also the fact that the release celebration is on this weekend and with that the time to obtain those aa cards is quite limited. It hurts a bit to invest that time in a long tournament on the same weekend.

  9. Intentional Draws let the wrong players top 8 a tournament. It invalidates the last round for the current top 8 seeded players, and makes it pointless for the top 16 who can otherwise steal their spots. For example, in the only HEX tournament I’ve ever entered I got 9th place going into the 2nd last round. I won the next round and was still 9th place. That’s complete bullshit and kept me off tournaments until now. Zubrin has had similar experiences.

    The reason Magic has it is because they don’t have the luxury of our digital clocks with a clear winner. It’s a flaw in the game, and not something to be proud of.

    Even MTGO doesn’t have it.
    Here’s an official statement from some big shot MTGO developer:

    “Intentional Draws will not be enabled in Magic Online. This decision was made long before the actual work on Magic Online 3.0 began.

    The reason: we don’t need them.

    “Huh?” you may ask.
    “But we can ID in paper tournaments” you say.

    Paper Magic and Online Magic are not the same game. There are many differences between Paper and Online Magic. One of the main differences is the very reason why we don’t need (nor are we going to offer) ID’s on Magic Online – the timers or “Shot Clocks.”

    IDs are a necessity in paper play. The reason that we allow IDs in paper play is that we cannot prevent players from drawing the game anyway. Players could simply start a match and not play until time runs out. Or they could play the match in such a way that each player wins 1 game and then time runs out. In either case this would be a draw. Because we cannot prevent draws in paper Magic we allow IDs. If we could prevent draws we would not have IDs in paper Magic.

    In Magic online draws can be prevented. If players choose to sit and not play one player will lose.

    In the past we’ve stated that we want Magic Online to mirror paper Magic as closely as possible. That’s still true to a great extent but in places where online capabilities exceed those in the analog form we’re going to use the opportunity to make the changes that we “wish” we could make in paper. (or vice versa).

    As I said above if we had the ability to accurately enforce time limits and/or use shot clocks in paper Magic we would be removing the ID ability there as well. “

  10. seems fair enoug..i have to admit i took it as give…havent thinked about it…that beind said i ended up 9th through some weird tie-breaking one of the cup tournaments…so I gues i like it after all

  11. well very poorly written…I apologize

  12. Likely going to be Set 1+2 only, so no worries at this end.

  13. I just got an email from BattleFY saying the tournament starts tomorrow? Think someone needs to fix that.

  14. The battlefy page says this starts on friday, not saturday (at least for me)

  15. So what format is saturday’s tournament?

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