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Creature Type
(Subtype for creature/tribal cards)
12 cards
{W} 16.7% {U} 25% {B} 16.7% {R} 16.7% {G} 16.7% {artifact symbol} 8.3%
as of Ikoria: Lair of Behemoths
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Licids are parasitic or symbiotic beings of a sluglike or insectoid nature with six (generally) limbs and a tail, found on the plane of Rath. The creature type only appeared in the Tempest block.


Description of licids in the Tempest style book

Licids blur the definition of "interdependent life form". They live most of their lives as solitary creatures, preying upon rodents and insects.[1] The species is very unfriendly to its own kind and certain breeds are blood enemies. It is believed that Licids are asexual egg layers that leave their young to fend for themselves. Licids can bond with a host (usually a human) and then imbue that creature with some ability. When attached, the Licid's legs sink into the body of the host, and the two creatures gradually meld together at the point of contact. When the Licid leaves the host, it disengages itself without physical harm to either organism. How the Licid benefits from this union is unknown, though it must be important to the creature's life cycle, as every Licid is thought to do this at least once in its life. In some cases, a licid is used by sentient beings for their ability granting capabilities. The Vec use beneficial Licids to enhance their combat skills, or as part of ceremonies. For example, a calming licid might be used to subdue dangerous criminals, or a quickening licid could be used to increase a warrior's speed. Licid skin, bones and tissue are also regularly used by the Vec as cloth, implements and food. However, the potential harm some varieties of Licid can do leads many potential hosts to avoid all contact with them.

Game mechanics[]

All licids have two abilities; an activated ability that changes the Licid into an aura enchantment with enchant creature, and a static ability that modifies the characteristics of the creature it enchants. Because of this complexity, they are considered a design failure.[2]

Elements of Licids can be found in Reconfigure, as a creature that has the ability to turn into and back from an attachable permanent.

Activated ability[]

The activated ability is always of the form "[mana cost], Tap: [This] loses this ability and becomes an Aura enchantment with enchant creature. Attach it to target creature. You may pay M to end this effect." The use of this ability causes the creature to stop being a creature and instead become an Aura attached to a target creature. This can prevent lethal damage from killing the Licid, and also creates a tapped enchantment, an unusual state for an enchantment that has no effect on its function. This ability also includes a clause for reverting the Licid back to its creature state, which costs one mana of the same color as the Licid (M).

Static ability[]

The static ability is like that of any normal Aura enchantment, which modifies the characteristics of the creature it enchants either by granting it an additional ability (such as flying) or by modifying its characteristics (such as its controller) or its card types.

List of Licids[]


In the card art, licids are always shown attached to a host. At least one non-licid card contains a licid: Mage il-Vec from Exodus. The John Matson illustration on this card was originally commissioned for a licid.[3]


  1. Pete Venters, Stepping into the Darkness, Dominian Chronicles, The Duelist # 21, 1997
  2. Mark Rosewater (November 10, 2003). "Make No Mistake". Wizards of the Coast.
  3. Magic Arcana (April 15, 2002). "Ewww... licids". Wizards of the Coast.