From my understanding, the CMC (converted mana cost) of a token is 0. When you sacrifice a creature with Birthing Pod it adds 1 to the CMC. So, if I sacrifice a token (any token) to Birthing Pod, can I get a creature with a CMC of 1 from my deck?

1 Answer 1


You are correct in the general sense. The CMC of almost any tokens is 0. The only exception is tokens copying other cards (e.g. Cackling Counterpart).

The simplest reference is the Oracle rulings:

6/1/2011 A token has a converted mana cost of 0, unless it is copying something else.

6/1/2011 If a creature is copying something else, its converted mana cost is the converted mana cost of whatever it's copying.

So, why do most tokens have CMC 0?

110.5b ... A token doesn't have any characteristics not defined by the spell or ability that created it.

Example: Jade Mage has the ability "{2}{G}: Put a 1/1 green Saproling creature token onto the battlefield." The resultning token has no mana cost, supertype, expansion symbol, rules text, or abilities.

Normally, in Magic, the absence of a value isn't the same as "zero", but the definition of converted mana cost explicitly covers this situation:

202.3a The converted mana cost of an object with no mana cost is 0.

  • Silly me, I should have looked at the card.
    – DForck42
    May 23, 2012 at 21:26
  • 2
    Little nitpick: the absence of a value usually does usually imply that it's zero, if it's needed in a calculation: 107.2. If anything needs to use a number that can’t be determined, either as a result or in a calculation, it uses 0 instead. When in doubt, the comp rules tend to repeat themselves just to err on the safe side, so it's no wonder that they explicitly spell out 202.3a when 107.2 would technically suffice.
    – Hackworth
    May 23, 2012 at 21:49
  • Note, a flipped card (Delver, Huntsmaster, etc) also has a casting cost of 0.
    – Hyppy
    Jun 13, 2012 at 23:10
  • Does this mean the resulting token has no artist, too, until it is targeted by Brushstroke Paintermage of course? :-)
    – corsiKa
    Jan 14, 2013 at 16:54
  • Indeed it does.
    – aaron
    Jan 1, 2016 at 5:00

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