What does Trade mean in card games?

Knock out or fight back an opponent’s card using your own

In battle-focused card games like Hearthstone or Magic: The Gathering (MTG), the term ‘trade’ is often used. It typically means when two players’ creatures eliminate each other. This kind of ‘trade’ usually happens during a combat phase, when one creature is blocking the other. But, trades can also happen from different actions, like sacrificing your own creature to create an effect that kills the opponent’s creature.

Advanced players use the term ‘trade’ to mean using any resource, like a removal spell or a weapon, to take out or destroy an opponent’s card or cards. For instance, if you use just one removal spell to destroy two opponent’s creatures, that’s often called a “2-for-1 trade”. This means the player who used the removal spell has gained an advantage in terms of cards.

‘Trade’ as a term can sometimes confuse new MTG players. This is because MTG is a trading card game where players do trade cards with each other outside of the gameplay. So, if you’re in the middle of a MTG game, and the opponent says, “Our creatures trade,” they’re not suggesting you swap creatures. What they’re actually saying is that their creature and yours are going to kill each other in the combat phase.

Example for using ‘Trade’ in a conversation

Hey, I just had an epic trade in Hearthstone today! πŸƒ

Oh, really? What happened? πŸ€”

I had a strong minion, but my opponent played a card that could destroy it. So, I used a spell to destroy two of their minions at once! It was a 2-for-1 trade! 🎯

Nice! That’s a smart move! So, both your minion and their minions got destroyed? 🀯