Magic: the Gathering in the UK
this is really dumb. retroactively changing a massive volume of formerly mandatory triggers. welp.
has wotc actually made any good decisions in the last few years?
The former. Anything that is 'may' or is, given the REL, considered optional under 1.4, is up to the controller of the trigger. Mandatory triggers are still mandatory, but your opponent isn't required to remind you, is not penalised for not reminding you.
Well, this is an interesting one. I am currently working on a project for Modern, showing which cards are now optional and which aren't, and indeed in most cases the stated rules for what is 1.4 optional do apply pretty clearly. But it does mean a lot of additional thinking and education for both players and judges.
I do think that the fact that these effects are optional does make some odd things happen here and there (Necroplasm has been mentioned) and working differently at different RELs is peculiar.
I don't like the fact that this decreases the responsibility of players to pay attention to what is going on in the game they are playing - and that it only counts for a particular subset of things. I don't think the distinction is intuitive enough.
I like not having to remind your opponent about things.
OTOH one of the qualities that makes magic such a good game is the fact that how good a card is, is not absolute, but contextual. Therefore "beneficial" doesn't have a constant definition. Trying to give it one will lead to silly situations.
Well, in case people haven't seen, they have taken all of what has been said on board and pulled the policy as originally announced. Some of the elements of it will remain (i.e. not having to remind your opponents about their triggers) but mostly it's going to be overhauled.