When either player uses an Action Card in a match, the game will become turn-based. Players will now have 10 seconds to take turns between using Action Cards, choosing to "Resolve" (which will end the Active Response), or wait for time limit of 10 seconds which will also end the Active Response.
The effects of all Action Cards played will only be activated once the Active Response ends. The order of the cards is the opposite of the order they were played, as such, the last Action Card played will be the first to have its effect activate.
Similar to Hero Arts, the Active Response will halt any Unit's attack gauge, MP accumulation, and the overall match time itself. As of the Version 2.4 Update, the attack lines will now appear during the Active Response.
There are four key mechanics attached to the Active Response:
- Both players are able to see the other's MP. The MP of the opponent will be displayed at the top right of the screen.
- Both players will gain AMP, AMP refers to the "bonus" MP given during the Active Response. This can be identified by its light blue color in the MP gauge at the bottom of the screen. Once the Active Response ends, all of the AMP will be gone.
- The Action Cards will take effect in the opposite order of which they were played.
- The effect of Action Cards are only calculated at the time they are played after the Active Response ends.
These four points will dictate whether or not a player will activate the Active Response, since doing so will give a bonus MP to the opponent. And if the Active Response is already active, it may be better not to respond based on the MP of the opponent, otherwise they may respond as well due to the AMP and negate your Action Card. A common example is using Selfish Predation (COR 173) as a way to negate another Action Card due to its low MP cost of simply one.
As for the fourth point, it is important to understand that the effect will only be calculated not when the card is played during the Active Response but only when it is being activated after the Active Response ends.
In this example, the Nero player used Wire Snatch (NERO 013) to move Devil Form Nero (T035) to a random slot on the board. Since Desert Tyrant Diablos (TDA 042) was occupying the slot at the bottom, the card would be moved to the middle and would have blocked the attack of Familiar: Nightmare (T038), however, the Morrigan player used Words of Self-Control (TDA 068) which returns a friendly purple unit to the EX Pocket (in this case, V, The Mysterious One (TDA 066)) and a random enemy unit with an MP cost of 6 or less to the opponent's EX Pocket, Desert Tyrant Diablos has 5 MP while Devil Form Nero has 9 MP, making the latter untargetable. Now that Desert Tyrant Diablos was gone from the board, the action card was calculated, and its random factor placed it at the bottom of the board, which misses the attack of Familiar: Nightmare, making Nero lose.
Another example is the case of Bladescale Storm (DON 021) which reads the following:
Deals 3 damage to a random enemy unit. If your Explore count is 3 or higher, deals 4 damage to all enemy units instead.
If, for example, a Jill player uses Bladescale Storm (DON 021) at an Explore count of 2, then their Dante opponent responds with Foresight (COR 123) and then Jill uses Bushinryu Awakening (DON 023) on a friendly Explore unit, the cards will be played at an opposite order:
- Count 3: Bushinryu Awakening (DON 023) (raises Explore count by 1)
- Count 2: Foresight (COR 123)
- Count 1: Bladescale Storm (DON 021) (will now be at an Explore count of 3 due to Bushinryu Awakening)