In MTGA, I used Callous Dismissal to return, to it's owner's hand, a Gemrazer that had been mutated over a Cat token (the Cat had been generated by Cubwarden). MTGA showed the token in my opponent's hand, and although they never cast it, it looked as though they could cast it for {0}.

What are the rules that allow this?

Is there a precedent for tokens existing in the hand before mutate existed?

If we were playing paper and using non-card objects to represent tokens, how would you represent it in the hand?

Does it count as a card in the hand?


A token cannot exist in your hand (or anywhere else other than the battlefield) long enough for anyone to do anything with it. It will cease to exist as a state-based action before anyone gets priority:

  1. State-Based Actions

704.5d If a token is in a zone other than the battlefield, it ceases to exist.

Mutate does not affect this in any way. Once the mutated creature leaves the battlefield; each individual card or token is placed in the appropriate place, so you will have a token in your hand that will cease to exist.

721.3. If a merged permanent leaves the battlefield, one permanent leaves the battlefield and each of the individual components are put into the appropriate zone.

It’s possible that there’s a bug in MTGA with not handling mutate properly; but I can’t say for sure why it looked like the token was in your opponent’s hand.


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