At GoatFormat.com, one of our primary objectives is to provide the Goat Format community with a clear set of rulings based on how Yu-Gi-Oh! was meant to be played in the August 2005 TCG format. To accomplish this, we take it upon ourselves to resolve every ruling dispute presented to us by rigorously investigating all available records. Most of the time, disputes can be resolved without controversy. However, sometimes rulings are understood differently by different people and it becomes necessary to issue notices of clarification to the community. These clarifications are intended to resolve the matter by giving everyone a single, consistent way to play Goat Format.
Today, we address the longstanding confusion regarding Gearfried the Iron Knight. We hold that Gearfried the Iron Knight's effect to destroy Equip cards is a Continuous Effect. If a card such as Blast With Chain becomes equipped to Gearfried the Iron Knight in the middle of a chain, that card will be destroyed immediately after its Chain Link resolves. Any effects that would activate as a result of this would do so in a new chain after resolving all current Chain Links.
I. Ruling History
We had originally proposed the effect of Gearfried to be a Trigger Effect, and as such, any cards that had become equipped to it would be destroyed in a new chain after that Equip Card resolves. We had been led to believe this by the following ruling regarding Butterfly Dagger - Elma and Really Eternal Rest:
Per the rules of Yu-Gi-Oh!, in order to chain to an effect, that effect must activate. This led us to the conclusion that this ruling implies Gearfried the Iron Knight has a Trigger Effect. This was supported by the Japanese ruling in 2005 confirming it worked as a Trigger Effect in the OCG, as well as the card’s later TCG erratum that included Problem-Solving Card Text making it explicitly clear that it is a Trigger Effect.
II. Continuous or Trigger
Most of the time, official rulings from Upper Deck Entertainment (UDE) serve as the beginning and end of our inquiry. Typically, we will only rule in contradiction with such rulings where evidence that would have been available to a judge in 2005 makes it clear that the UDE ruling in question was inconsistently applied or not applied at all at premier events at that time. Such is the case here, where historical context paints a much different picture. For starters, Netrep had maintained as late as 2004 that Gearfried’s effect was Continuous with rulings such as this one from Curtis Schultz:
This was understood to be the case as late as 2006, as Simon Key writes here in a City of Gamers forum post:
But what about the Really Eternal Rest ruling? The judges in 2005 were well aware of it. So agonizing was the issue that some judges hypothesized that Gearfried’s was a special kind of Trigger effect that could interrupt Chains during their resolution! Eventually, however, it became clear that Gearfried’s effect was, in fact, Continuous, and the Really Eternal Rest ruling was simply wrong. This is why the ruling was eventually removed from UDE’s website in 2006, as Glenn Cheng explains in this post:
The documented dissonance within the judging community with respect to this ruling makes it clear to us that Gearfried’s effect was understood to be Continuous in the TCG in 2005, and indeed as late as 2006 and beyond. We are removing the Really Eternal Rest ruling from the relevant section of our website and updating Gearfried’s entries accordingly.