What IS Riot?!

Riot – MTG Mechanics Explained

Card KingdomStrategy

Riot appears on creatures and is a static ability that gives you a choice: you may have the creature enter the battlefield with either haste or a +1/+1 counter.

Gruul Spellbreaker | Domri, Chaos Bringer | Skarrgan Hellkite

And as far as rules go, that’s about it! But there are some notes to help you out:

  • Multiple instances of riot on a creature (possible thanks to Rhythm of the Wild) trigger separately, and you can choose different options for each trigger. You can also choose the same options for each trigger, although multiple instances of haste on a creature don’t do much other than send a message.
  • Riot is a replacement effect. You don’t make the choice until the creature spell resolves, and it will enter the battlefield with either the counter or haste before your opponents can respond in any way.
  • If +1/+1 counters can’t be placed on your creatures, (say there’s a Solemnity on the board), creatures with riot will always get haste.
  • If you give a creature hasts, it has haste indefinitely. Useful to know if you know your opponent likes to steal your creatures.

Riot worked rather well, allowing some flexibility in your game plan depending on if you were in a position to press your advantage or need to lay back and block or build larger threats. It is somewhat thematically tied to Gruul and Ravnica, but not so much that it couldn’t appear elsewhere should it fit a different set.

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