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Link to video

enter image description here

Jared Boettcher starts with the object in play, then plays a Delver of Secrets on top of it afterwards. What is it?

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It's an official Innistrad checklist card.

Since Delver of Secrets transforms, it doesn't have a traditional card back in paper Magic. To enable playing it without an opaque sleeve, there are official helper cards with a traditional card back that substitue for such transform cards, allowing you to set the transform cards aside and only bring them in when you play the helper card as the actual card.

https://mtg.fandom.com/wiki/Substitute_card?file=InnistradChecklist.jpg

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  • Do you know how these cards work? I'd have thought you play with the substitute card (as in, shuffle it into your deck) instead of Delver, but that doesn't appear to be the case here.
    – user22925
    Commented Jun 24 at 14:42
  • As you guessed, the checklist cards are used in hidden zones (library, hand) because of the standard back. Once the card enters the battlefield, typically the "real" card is used, which can be flipped/transformed as needed. It is often stored next to tokens (notably because the card is in the deck, it does not come from the sideboard). As an alternative, some players with opaque card sleeves don't bother with the placeholder card and remove the card from the sleeve to transform it as needed.
    – ryanyuyu
    Commented Jun 24 at 15:57
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    @Allure Boettcher didnt start with the checklist card in play. He had it in his starting hand and played it for {U}, as though he had played the front face of Delver itself. Think of the checklist cards as official proxy cards for transform cards, they replace the actual transform cards in the deck. You draw and play them like normal.
    – Hackworth
    Commented Jun 24 at 16:54
  • and if you zoom in on the still from the video, it looks like there's some black markings matching the position of the Delver in the placeholder card (second from top on the right)
    – ilkkachu
    Commented Jun 24 at 21:05
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    @KarlKnechtel You can absolutely play transform cards without the checklist cards if you have opaque sleeves. However, it's much more convenient to use the checklist card still and use the transform card in a transparent sleeve, so you don't have to take the transform card out of its sleeve and insert it back every time it transforms, or use another, less clear way of noting its current transform status.
    – Hackworth
    Commented Jun 28 at 22:48

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