Suppose this board state exists:

I cast Role Reversal, targeting my Feather and my opponent's Atraxa.

Role Reversal reads

Exchange control of two target permanents that share a permanent type.

However, Control Magic, which remains under my control, reads

You control enchanted creature.

Rulings on Role Reversal tell us that

Role Reversal’s effect lasts indefinitely. It doesn’t wear off during the cleanup step, and it doesn’t expire if the permanents stop sharing a permanent type after Role Reversal has resolved.

However, this doesn't indicate whether or not this effect can still be overridden by that of an enchantment.

Does my opponent end up with control of Feather? Or can I abuse Feather's passive ability to keep casting Role Reversal on each of my succeeding turns to take control of more creatures?

2 Answers 2


Role Reversal will actually exchange the creatures.

All control changing effects, including Role Reversal, are the same sort of effects: continuous effects. Control Magic has a static ability that creates a continuous effect as long as it is on the battlefield. Role Reversal creates a continuous effect at resolution that, as the quoted ruling says, lasts indefinitely.

So, determining what happens with both of them is determined by the Interaction of continuous effects rules. Both of these are control changing effects, so rule 613.6 applies:

  • 613.6 Within a layer or sublayer, determining which order effects are applied in is usually done using a timestamp system. An effect with an earlier timestamp is applied before an effect with a later timestamp.
    • 613.6a A continuous effect generated by a static ability has the same timestamp as the object the static ability is on, or the timestamp of the effect that created the ability, whichever is later.
    • 613.6b A continuous effect generated by the resolution of a spell or ability receives a timestamp at the time it's created.
    • 613.6c An object receives a timestamp at the time it enters a zone.

The end result is fairly intuitive: the Role Reversal was cast later, so its effect gets applied later and it determines the final outcome.

  • If you could detach and reattach Control Magic, it would get a new timestamp, and it would win out.
    – ikegami
    Apr 29, 2019 at 20:27
  • Neat! Okay, thanks! It did seem a bit too good to be true.
    – intuited
    Apr 29, 2019 at 20:39
  • Off-topic at this point but does the effect of Control Magic follow if it changes hands? IE if I Role Reverse Control Magic with someone else's enchantment (instead of targeting the two creatures), do they get Feather, because "you" has been redefined by the change of control?
    – intuited
    Apr 29, 2019 at 20:40
  • @intuited, Yes, if CM has the latest timestamp of the change control effects on the enchanted creature, and if CM's controller changes, so does the control of the enchanted creature.
    – ikegami
    Apr 29, 2019 at 23:04

I would recommend reading the rules regarding layers.

As both effects are control changing effects, they are applied on the same layer. Effects within the same layer follow the time-stamp rulings.

The latest effect is the one that will prevail. As Control Magic was cast first. and then Role Reversal, the latest one cast will be the prevalent one.

The interactions between different layers might be a bit more difficult to understand, but within the same layer, time stamp always trumps everything.

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