Ravnica Allegiance Rulings clarifications

This document is created to clarify how policy should be interpreted in interactions with new Ravnica Allegiance cards.

This document is based on the January 21st 2019 IPG and MTR; future changes to these documents may render some these rulings obsolete.

Current abilities clarified:

  • Riot
  • Addendum

Current policies clarified:

  • Scry/Surveil
  • Missed triggers

Specific card clarified

  • Teysa Karlov



CR – 702.135a Riot is a static ability. “Riot” means “You may have this permanent enter the battlefield with an additional +1/+1 counter on it. If you don’t, it gains haste.”

If a player casts a creature with Riot and forgets to make a choice for the ability, we treat it as if they had chosen haste.

This is not an infraction (hence they do not receive any Warning for GRV) and the opponent does not have to remind them about Riot.

Note that if the creature must attack (e.g. Rubblebelt Recluse and Rhythm of the Wild), NAP must point it out; failing to do so is either Failure to Maintain Game State (and Game Rules Violation to AP) or Cheating.



Riot implies a choice by the controller of the creature, but the two options are not symmetrical: one implies a visible action (putting a counter), while the other does not affect the visible game state. There is thus no way for the opponent or for an observing judge to distinguish between a missed choice and a choice for haste.

We have a longstanding preference to not intervene as long as the game state could be legal (scry, trample), and we do not consider strategic arguments when assessing Game Rules Violations (Haste in post-combat Main Phase is admittedly suboptimal).



If a player casts a spell with addendum at a time where it could be their main phase and they do not resolve the additional or alternative effect from addendum, neither judges or opponents should intervene unless later game events prove that it was actually cast in Main Phase.

If the mistake is noticed, including by the caster, we treat it as a Game Rule Violation.

Addenda are most often beneficial, and we can expect players to be clear in the rare circumstances when they do not want the additional or alternative effect. However, we do not want to intervene, or to force the opposing player to point out a sub-optimal play, unless there is a clear indication that the rules have been violated. Once there is such an indication, including the fact that the player themselves calls attention to it, we fix the situation as we would do for any Game Rule Violation (leave-as-is or backup the situation). Under no circumstances should a player be forced to skip a phase because they forgot to resolve an Addendum.



Sam untaps for their turn, draws a card and play a land. They cast Sphinx’s Insight but they do not gain 2 life. After that, they cast Spirit of the Spire and attack with Senate Griffin.

An observing Judge should not intervene until the attack (Sphinx’s Insight could have been legally cast during the combat phase and Spirit of the Spire in the second main phase). Likewise, Sam’s opponent does not have to ask them about the timing of their spell until that point. Once Sam declares attackers, we consider that their mistake was to have resolved the spell incorrectly, and we fix it as such: Either we backup to the point of the error (the resolution of the spell), or we leave the game as is.

Even though there are technical reasons to believe that the game was in Sam’s second main phase, this is not what they intended and we do not force them to skip their combat phase. In general, we never make players be in a step or phase they didn’t intend to be.

Two cards create restrictions on the opponent’s actions when they are cast in the main phase: Arrester’s Zeal and Code of Constraint. If there is no way of knowing whether the spell was cast in the main phase (which, for Code of Constraint, also assumes that the targeted creature was already tapped), the opponent is allowed to play as if the spell was cast in another phase; their play either succeeds, confirming that the spell was cast in another phase, or is rewound, with no penalty associated).



As in Riot, we prefer to not intervene as long as the game state is legal, even if we have reasons to believe that the player forgot about Addendum rather than chose to cast their spell as a weird timing. However, once we are sure that something went wrong, we correct the actual mistake – not resolving the Addendum part – according to the IPG. We never force a player to skip some parts of their turn.


Scry / Surveil

Guilds of Ravnica’s Surveil mechanic is very similar to the evergreen mechanic Scry: Both allow the player to look at the top of the library and to either keep it there or move it to another location. If a player forgets to Scry or to Surveil, they chose to leave the card(s) on top. This is not an infraction. Judges should not intervene, and the opponent is not required to point it out.

If one player resolves one of these as the other (either moving a scried card to the graveyard or a surveilled card to the bottom of the library), this is a GRV. The game should either be backed up to the point of the error or left as is. It cannot be fixed using the “incorrect zone” partial remedy.



Missed Scry/Surveils are official shortcuts from the MTR


Missed Trigger investigations


If a player misses the trigger of Captive Audience at the beginning of their upkeep, the new IPG says that they do not get a Warning for Missed Trigger, as they do not own the card responsible for the existence of the trigger.

Should Judges intervene to investigate whether the player was aware of the trigger (which would be Cheating), or should they let the game continue, as the owner of the card did not point it out?


We treat it as any Missed Trigger that is contextually harmful, but not “detrimental” according to the IPG (as we would treat a Dark Confidant trigger for a player at one life): a Judge should only intervene if they wish to investigate whether the player controlling Captive Audience missed it intentionally, which would be Cheating. Furthermore, this intervention should only happen after the ability is actually missed (when the player draws, or asked whether they can draw), so as to clearly assess there was an infraction and exclude that the trigger was still on the stack, invisible.
Since this is a Missed Trigger, the opponent will get the chance to put the ability on the stack.


Missing Teysa Karlov’s additional trigger


A player controls Teysa Karlov, but forgets her first ability (“If a creature dying causes a triggered ability of a permanent you control to trigger, that ability triggers an additional time.”) and resolves a “dies” trigger only once. Is it Missed Trigger or Games Rules Violation?


This is a missed trigger. Teysa’s ability changes the number of times an ability triggers. If the second is not acknowledged at the appropriate time (when it goes on the stack, when it resolves, or when it affects the visible game state, depending on the trigger), we treat it as any missed trigger.



Florian Horn

Alfonso Bueno
Kevin Desprez
Toby Elliott
Florian Horn
Riccardo Tessitori