Certain Battle for Zendikar Eldrazi cards have:

Devoid (This card has no color.)

According to a video by Mark Rosewater, that means regardless of the colored mana required to cast the card, the card itself is colorless.

So then, just like the example with Extort: even though there are color mana symbols in the reminder text, those do not count towards color identity.

Given this, if I have a colorless Commander (e.g. Kozilek, the Great Distortion, Ulamog, the Ceaseless Hunger, Karn, Silver Golem, etc.), can I include Devoid cards - as they are colorless? I checked various sources and seem to come up with equal support pro and con. The last line of 105.2 reads:

An object’s color or colors may also be defined by a color indicator or a characteristic-defining ability.

Devoid is such a defining ability...


3 Answers 3


No, the reason that you cannot use Devoid cards in a Commander deck with a colorless commander is that a card's "color" is not the same thing as it's "color identity". "Color identity" dictates what cards that can go in your Commander deck, not "color".

Devoid changes a cards color.

105.2. ...An object is the color or colors of the mana symbols in its mana cost...

Devoid does not affect the card's color identity.

903.4. The Commander variant uses color identity to determine what cards can be in a deck with a certain commander. The color identity of a card is the color or colors of any mana symbols in that card’s mana cost or rules text, plus any colors defined by its characteristic-defining abilities (see rule 604.3) or color indicator (see rule 204).

If the rules text for Devoid said "This card's color identity is colorless" then things would be different.



Color identity includes the following:

the color or colors of any mana symbols in that card’s mana cost or rules text, plus any colors defined by its characteristic-defining abilities

From the Comprehensive Rules (Commander 2017 (August 25, 2017))

While the card text states that the card is colorless it does include colored mana symbols on the card. These colored mana symbols will determine the color identity of the card.

The example of Extort you give doesn't apply to this because the mana symbol is part of the remainder text but not the mana cost or rules text of the card.


From what I understand, Colour Identity does include anything that uses and displays colours in the game. So for you to be able to have a devoid creature with a colour in its mana cost, it would have to be in your commander's colours. I got this from this article on reddit.

Furthermore, I would think it would be counterproductive to have devoid cards in a commander deck that have different colours than your commander. This is because your mana sources would be limited to devoid sources of that mana and artifacts that produce mana of any colour. Even if a devoid creature ignored the colour identity, most sources of mana for that permanent would have that colour identity and would be illegal in the deck.

  • that first sentence is not strictly true, reminder text is exempt. for instance the orzhov hybrid mana symbol in extort's reminder text does NOT effect colour identity. Crypt Ghast for instance is a legal card in a mono black commander list.
    – Neil Meyer
    Commented Sep 4, 2017 at 16:50

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