- Mike Turian (September 12, 2008). “The Specter of the Present”. magicthegathering.com. Wizards of the Coast.
- Matt Tabak (May 31, 2019). “Modern Horizons Mechanics”. magicthegathering.com. Wizards of the Coast.
- Mark Rosewater (January 26, 2012). “Was unearth ever considered as a mechanic for innistrad block due to the graveyard based nature of the set?”. Blogatog. Tumblr.
- Mark Rosewater (August 31, 2012). “I recall saying one day we will know why Unearth wasn’t in Innistrad.”. Blogatog. Tumblr.
- Mark Rosewater (June 12, 2019). “Why wasn’t unearth named something like “comeback”?”. Blogatog. Tumblr.
Unearth returns a creature to the battlefield and gives it haste, at the expense of the creature being exiled at the end of turn. It functions similarly to flashback, providing a one-time effect that can be cast from the graveyard. However, flashback only appears on instants and sorceries, and Unearth is strictly limited to creature cards.
Unearth was designed by Brian Tinsman, Devin Low and Erik Lauer. After Shards of Alara it also appeared in the other sets of the Alara block and in Modern Horizons.
The Encore mechanic introduced in Commander Legends is similar to Unearth, with subtle differences. Creatures with Unearth use the card itself, do not necessarily have to attack and are exiled at end of turn or if they leave the battlefield.
Gem level progression
|1||10||18||4||15 to 22||12|
|2||13||22||15||4||19 to 28||15||9569||9569|
|3||17||27||19||4||25 to 38||19||28189||37758|
|4||21||33||23||5||33 to 49||24||59146||96904|
|5||25||38||26||5||42 to 63||28||111192||208096|
|6||29||43||30||6||53 to 80||32||193800||401896|
|7||33||49||34||6||67 to 100||37||320280||722176|
|8||36||52||36||6||79 to 118||40||359090||1081266|
|9||39||56||39||7||92 to 139||43||498508||1579774|
|10||42||60||42||7||108 to 162||47||682057||2261831|
|11||45||64||45||7||126 to 189||50||921777||3183608|
|12||48||68||48||8||146 to 219||53||1727879||4911487|
|13||51||72||50||8||169 to 254||57||1791769||6703256|
|14||54||76||53||8||195 to 293||60||2353679||9056935|
|15||57||80||56||9||225 to 338||64||3070912||12127847|
|16||60||84||59||9||259 to 388||67||9095466||21223313|
|17||63||88||61||9||297 to 446||71||16039890||37263203|
|18||66||92||64||10||341 to 511||74||29817117||67080320|
|19||68||95||66||10||373 to 559||77||62895056||129975376|
|20||70||98||68||10||407 to 611||80||212051599||342026975|
|21||72||100||70||10||445 to 668||81||N/A||N/A|
|22||74||N/A||N/A||11||486 to 729||82||N/A||N/A|
|23||76||N/A||N/A||11||531 to 796||83||N/A||N/A|
|24||78||N/A||N/A||11||579 to 868||84||N/A||N/A|
|25||80||N/A||N/A||11||631 to 947||85||N/A||N/A|
|26||82||N/A||N/A||11||688 to 1032||86||N/A||N/A|
|27||84||N/A||N/A||12||749 to 1124||87||N/A||N/A|
|28||86||N/A||N/A||12||816 to 1224||88||N/A||N/A|
|29||88||N/A||N/A||12||888 to 1332||89||N/A||N/A|
|30||90||N/A||N/A||12||966 to 1449||90||N/A||N/A|
|31||91||N/A||N/A||12||1007 to 1511||90||N/A||N/A|
|32||92||N/A||N/A||13||1051 to 1576||91||N/A||N/A|
|33||93||N/A||N/A||13||1095 to 1643||91||N/A||N/A|
|34||94||N/A||N/A||13||1142 to 1713||92||N/A||N/A|
|35||95||N/A||N/A||13||1190 to 1786||92||N/A||N/A|
|36||96||N/A||N/A||13||1241 to 1861||93||N/A||N/A|
|37||97||N/A||N/A||13||1293 to 1940||93||N/A||N/A|
|38||98||N/A||N/A||13||1348 to 2022||94||N/A||N/A|
|39||99||N/A||N/A||13||1404 to 2107||94||N/A||N/A|
|40||100||N/A||N/A||13||1463 to 2195||95||N/A||N/A|
- Unearth appears only on creature cards.
- You may activate the unearth ability of a card in your graveyard no matter how it wound up in your graveyard.
- If you activate a card’s unearth ability but if that card is removed from your graveyard before the ability resolves, that unearth ability will resolve and do nothing.
- Activating a creature card’s unearth ability isn’t the same as casting the creature card. The unearth ability is put on the stack, but the creature card is not. Spells and abilities that interact with activated abilities (such as Stifle) will interact with unearth, but spells and abilities that interact with spells (such as Remove Soul) will not.
- At the beginning of the next end step, a creature returned to the battlefield with unearth is exiled. This is a delayed triggered ability, and it can be countered by effects such as Stifle or Voidslime that counter triggered abilities. If the ability is countered, the creature will stay on the battlefield and the delayed trigger won’t trigger again. However, the replacement effect will still exile the creature when it eventually leaves the battlefield.
- Unearth grants haste to the creature that’s returned to the battlefield. However, neither of the “exile” abilities is granted to that creature. If that creature loses all its abilities, it will still be exiled at the beginning of the next end step, and if it would leave the battlefield, it is still exiled instead.
- If a creature returned to the battlefield with unearth would leave the battlefield for any reason, it’s exiled instead — unless the spell or ability that’s causing the creature to leave the battlefield is actually trying to exile it. In that case, it succeeds in exiling it. If it later returns the creature card to the battlefield (as Oblivion Ring or Flickerwisp might, for example), the creature card will return as a new object with no relation to its previous existence. The unearth effect will no longer apply to it.
From the glossary of the Comprehensive Rules (September 24, 2021—Innistrad: Midnight Hunt)
- A keyword ability that lets a player return a creature card from their graveyard to the battlefield. See rule 702.84, “Unearth.”
From the Comprehensive Rules (September 24, 2021—Innistrad: Midnight Hunt)
- 702.84. Unearth
702.84a Unearth is an activated ability that functions while the card with unearth is in a graveyard. “Unearth ” means “: Return this card from your graveyard to the battlefield. It gains haste. Exile it at the beginning of the next end step. If it would leave the battlefield, exile it instead of putting it anywhere else. Activate only as a sorcery.”
Related helmet enchantments
The following helmet enchantments affect Unearth.
|Enchantment Unearth Cast Speed 1||66||8% increased Unearth Cast Speed||helmet 100default 0|
|Enchantment Unearth Cast Speed 2||75||12% increased Unearth Cast Speed||helmet 100default 0|
|Enchantment Unearth Corpse Level 1||66||Unearth Spawns corpses with +3 Level||helmet 100default 0|
|Enchantment Unearth Corpse Level 2||75||Unearth Spawns corpses with +5 Level||helmet 100default 0|
|Enchantment Unearth Damage 1||66||25% increased Unearth Damage||helmet 100default 0|
|Enchantment Unearth Damage 2||75||40% increased Unearth Damage||helmet 100default 0|
This item can be acquired through the following upgrade paths or vendor recipes:
|8||Dying AnguishDying Anguish8Level 19 GemAlternative Quality: +19%Moribund, he gazed upon the journey taken as blood trickled down his chin. His eye closed on the city ahead that he would never call home.||random level 19 gem with 19% alternative quality||Automatic|
|1||Gemcutter’s IncubatorGemcutter’s IncubatorAdds an incubated Quality Gem item to an equippable itemItem drops after killing # monstersQuality GemRight click this item then left click an item to apply it. The Incubated item drops after killing a specific number of monsters.||random superior gem||Automatic|
|6||The FoxThe Fox6Level 20 Gem”Masters of wit, strength and cunning. To survive the harsh winters, you must be like the fox.”- Ezomyte Proverb||random level 20 gem||Automatic|
|13||The CataclysmThe Cataclysm13Level 21 Spell GemCorruptedThe mighty warriors traded in blows, the nimble archers in arrows, yet it was the brazen thaumaturgists who would bring catastrophe to all.||random corrupted level 21 Spell gem||Automatic|
|3||Gemcutter’s PromiseGemcutter’s Promise3Superior GemQuality: +20%”I swore to use my position to help the people. What good is power when it just accumulates on the already-powerful?” – Erasmus, Imperial Gemcutter||random superior gem with 20% quality||Automatic|
|1||The VoidThe Void1Reach into the Void and claim your prize.||random divination card set exchange||Automatic|
This item is given as a quest reward for the following quests:
|The Caged BruteAct 1||✗||✓||✗||✗||✗||✗||✗|
This item can be bought at the listed NPC vendors, after completing the following quests:
|The Caged BruteAct 1Nessa||✓||✓||✓||✗||✗||✓||✓|
|A Fixture of FateAct 3Siosa||✓|
|Fallen from GraceAct 6Lilly Roth||✓|