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Transform

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Transform
Introduced: Innistrad
Last Used: Ixalan
Reminder Text: No official reminder text
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Gatherer search for "Transform"

Transform is a keyword action introduced in Innistrad and means to turn a double-faced card on the back side, changing the card face that is visible.[1][2][3][4]

Description[edit | edit source]

Each double-faced card has a front face. This face is the default; the permanent starts on the battlefield with this face up. If an ability instructs you to transform the permanent, you turn it over so its other face is up. Whichever face is up tells you what that permanent is and what it can do.

History[edit | edit source]

Dark Ascension introduced some different transforming cards; the first transforming artifacts and the first creature that transforms into an aura. Magic Origins has five legendary creatures who are exiled and then returned transformed (into planeswalkers) from the exile zone. Shadows over Innistrad and Eldritch Moon[5] saw the return of the original keyword action, as did Ixalan.[6][7]

Rules[edit | edit source]

From the Comprehensive Rules (Ixalan (September 29, 2017))

  • 701.26. Transform
    • 701.26a To transform a permanent, turn it over so that its other face is up. Only permanents represented by double-faced cards can transform. (See rule 711, “Double-Faced Cards.”)
    • 701.26b Although transforming a permanent uses the same physical action as turning a permanent face up or face down, they are different game actions. Abilities that trigger when a permanent is turned face down won’t trigger when that permanent transforms, and so on.
    • 701.26c If a spell or ability instructs a player to transform a permanent that isn’t represented by a double-faced card, nothing happens.
    • 701.26d If a spell or ability instructs a player to transform a permanent, and the face that permanent would transform into is represented by an instant or sorcery card face, nothing happens.
    • 701.26e Some triggered abilities trigger when an object “transforms into” an object with a specified characteristic. Such an ability triggers if the object transforms and has the specified characteristic immediately after it transforms.
    • 701.26f If an activated or triggered ability of a permanent that isn’t a delayed triggered ability of that permanent tries to transform it, the permanent transforms only if it hasn’t transformed since the ability was put onto the stack. If a delayed triggered ability of a permanent tries to transform that permanent, the permanent transforms only if it hasn’t transformed since that delayed triggered ability was created. In either case, if the permanent has already transformed, the instruction to transform is ignored.

From the glossary of the Comprehensive Rules (Ixalan (September 29, 2017))

Transform
To turn a double-faced card so its other face is up. See rule 701.26, “Transform.”

Rulings[edit | edit source]

  • "Double-faced" always refers to the physical card. It is neither a characteristic nor a copiable value. For example, a token can never be a double-faced permanent even if it's a copy of one.
  • Each face of a double-faced card has its own name, types, subtypes, power and toughness, abilities, and so on. While a double-faced card is not on the battlefield, consider only the characteristics of its front face. While a double-faced card is on the battlefield, consider only the characteristics of the face that's currently up. The other set of characteristics is ignored except for the converted mana cost. The back face has by definition the same converted mana cost as the front face.[8]
  • A double-faced card enters the battlefield with the front face up unless it is stated that the card enters the battlefield transformed.
  • The back face of a double-faced card can't be cast.
  • Transforming a permanent doesn't affect any Auras or Equipment attached to that permanent. Similarly, any counters on the permanent will remain on that permanent after it transforms.
  • Damage marked on a double-faced permanent will stay marked on that permanent after it transforms.

See also[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Mark Rosewater. (August 29, 2011.) “Every Two Sides Has a Story”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
  2. Monty Ashley. (September 21, 2011.) “The Two Sides”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
  3. Tom LaPille. (September 16, 2011.) “Werewolves Gone Wild”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
  4. Doug Beyer. (November 30, 2011.) “The Only Constant”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
  5. Matt Tabak. (June 27, 2016.) “Eldritch Moon Mechanics”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
  6. Matt Tabak. (August 28, 2017.) “Ixalan Mechanics”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
  7. Ken Nagle. (September 5, 2017.) “Conquering the Design of Ixalan”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
  8. Matt Tabak. (March 7, 2016.) “Shadows over Innistrad Mechanics”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.