Since Bioshift targets a creature, THEN another one for the recipient of the counters, can I use Swerve to change the target? If so, which target can it be, the first or the second, or any?

  • I always found the wording on Swerve to be ambiguous if you don't read the rulings behind it. "With a single target" sounds like it's taking about what it is that you replace the original target with, not a condition on the spell that you must target. So it could be read as "Change the target of [target spell] with a single target" instead of "Change the target of [target spell with a single target]", – GendoIkari Sep 15 '15 at 17:14
  • @Gendolkari It is indeed ambiguous. "With a single target" is a dangling modifier that could modify "target" or "target spell". – Rainbolt Sep 15 '15 at 18:59
  • @Gendolkari I've complained about the same thing. It would simple enough to change "with a single target" to "that has a single target". – Hao Ye Sep 16 '15 at 0:28
  • 3
    While I can understand the confusion, I don't think the wording is actually ambiguous, since "with" is not used with "change" in that context. I.e. if "with a single target" referred to "target", then it should have been "to a single target" or "Exchange the target (...) with a single target". – tengfred Sep 16 '15 at 8:38
  • @tengfred right. If it was intended in the way Gendolkari and Rainbolt have suggested, it would probably have been worded as "Replace the target of target spell with a single target of your choice." – Dan Henderson Sep 17 '15 at 6:24

Just to expand on what Matt said, Bioshift has two targets, both of which must be declared at the time of casting. Even if a spell specifies that one effect happens after the other, like Biomantic Mastery, the targets must still be declared together and Swerve won't be able to target the spell.

This also applies to spells that have two separate effects that target, such as a Cryptic Command cast for its first and second modes. Cast like this it cannot be Swerve'd, but if it were cast for the first and third modes then it only has one target, and you can use Swerve.


You can only Swerve a spell with a single target. Bioshift has two targets (as it mentions "target creature" twice), so it cannot be Swerved.

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