Fear no more

As it happens, the comprehensive changes to the comprehensive rules (as outlined in the July 2009 update bulletin) contain some gems. Thanks to SSO for pointing this one out (I admit I kind of glanced for a couple seconds at the page describing comprehensive rules updates):
702.11
This is intimidate, an evergreen keyword that doesn’t quite exist yet. A creature with intimidate can’t be blocked except by artifact creatures and/or creatures that share a color with it. It’s coming soon, so rather than renumber everything in a few months, it was added in early. (It essentially takes the place of fear, which will remain in place but won’t appear on new cards.)

Mark Rosewater has talked previously about how he didn’t like that the Fear keyword was linked to black, but that it would be too problematic a change to try and modify how Fear works. Generating a new keyword seems like a good plan, and Intimidate is a very appropriate name now that it’s generic across the colors.
I notice that they haven’t yet modified the Oracle text of Skirk Shaman to reflect that it does, indeed, have Intimidate.

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