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Decayed
Keyword Ability
Type Static
Introduced Innistrad: Midnight Hunt
Last Used Innistrad: Midnight Hunt
Reminder Text Decayed (This creature can't block. When it attacks, sacrifice it at the end of combat.)
Statistics
20 cards
{U} 30% {B} 60% {U/B} 5% {B/G} 5%
Scryfall Search
oracle:"Decayed"

Decayed is a keyword ability introduced in Innistrad: Midnight Hunt.

Description[]

Decayed creatures can't block. When they attack, they are sacrificed at the end of combat.[1]

There are no printed cards that have decayed, as the the mechanic is usually only used for token cards. The tokens that are created with the mechanic are all 2/2 black Zombie tokens.

In some instances, the mechanic is added to creatures that that are returned after having died (Gisa, Glorious Resurrector) or from the graveyard (Ghouls' Night Out).

Decayed was designed to create more Zombie creature tokens at low rarities and at a cheaper cost.[1] R&D liked the flavor of slowly building up a Zombie army and winning the game by attacking with a horde. The idea is that each Zombie basically has one attack, and you want to save it until it is the right time to use it. This way, the opponent had to treat the Zombie creature tokens as a potential threat, but without the stress of escalating combat math. The drawback creates a new play pattern[1], with different archetypes having different ways of exploiting 2/2 creatures that can die on command.

History[]

When Innistrad: Midnight Hunt took the decayed Zombie creature tokens from Innistrad: Crimson Vow, they traded them the Spirit mechanic (Disturb).[1][2]

Rules[]

From the glossary of the Comprehensive Rules (April 29, 2022—Streets of New Capenna)

Decayed
A keyword ability that means “This creature can’t block” and “When this creature attacks, sacrifice it at end of combat. See rule 702.147, “Decayed.”

From the Comprehensive Rules (April 29, 2022—Streets of New Capenna)

  • 702.147. Decayed
    • 702.147a Decayed represents a static ability and a triggered ability. “Decayed” means “This creature can’t block” and “When this creature attacks, sacrifice it at end of combat.”

Rulings[]

  • Decayed represents a static ability and a triggered ability. "Decayed" means "This creature can't block" and "When this creature attacks, sacrifice it at end of combat."[3]
  • Decayed does not create any attacking requirements. You may choose not to attack with a creature that has decayed.
  • Decayed does not grant haste. Creatures with decayed that enter the battlefield during your turn may not attack until your next turn.
  • Once a creature with decayed attacks, it will be sacrificed at end of combat, even if it no longer has decayed at that time.

Examples[]

Example

Hobbling Zombie {2}{B}
Creature — Zombie
2/2
Deathtouch
When Hobbling Zombie dies, create a 2/2 black Zombie creature with decayed. (It can’t block. When it attacks, sacrifice it at end of combat.)

References[]

  1. a b c d Mark Rosewater (September 6, 2021). "Happy Hunt-ing, Part 2". magicthegathering.com. Wizards of the Coast.
  2. Mark Rosewater (November 8, 2021). "From Vow On, Part 2". magicthegathering.com. Wizards of the Coast.
  3. Wizards of the Coast (September 15, 2021). "Innistrad: Midnight Hunt Release Notes". magicthegathering.com. Wizards of the Coast.
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