MTG Arena: State of the Game – Innistrad: Midnight Hunt

Posted in Magic Digital on September 14, 2021

By Wizards of the Coast

Rotation and Renewal

It's that time of the year again! Cards aren't the only thing transforming on Innistrad—with the release of Innistrad: Midnight Hunt also comes Standard rotation. This means we'll be bidding a fond farewell to Throne of Eldraine, Theros Beyond Death, Ikoria: Lair of Behemoths, and Core Set 2021 in Standard Constructed formats and welcoming in all the "so awesome it's scary"-ness we previewed during the recent Magic Showcase 2021.

Never fear—cards from these sets will still be playable in Historic formats, and to help you prowl through the dark unknowns of a new Standard environment, we have special renewal rewards for all our existing players. No tricks to these treats! If you've logged into MTG Arena between last year's renewal and the release of Innistrad: Midnight Hunt, you'll be eligible to receive these rewards!

Renewal Rewards

Once the clock strikes midnight—or rather, once the Innistrad: Midnight Hunt game update is available—eligible players will be able to log in and reap their Harvesttide Festival rewards just in time for Standard rotation:

  • Ten rare/mythic rare individual card rewards from Standard 2022 sets
  • Up to an additional ten uncommon individual card rewards from Innistrad: Midnight Hunt
  • Up to three additional mythic rare individual card rewards from Innistrad: Midnight Hunt

Upon reaching level 31, the Standard 2021 card sleeve:

Standard 2021 card sleeve reward

While the ten rare/mythic rare cards will be granted automatically when your shiny green renewal egg hatches for the hunt, the additional rewards are earned by leveling up your Set Mastery—no additional purchase necessary—or Mastery Pass.

And though we've said it before, we'll say it again: players must log in to MTG Arena before maintenance begins for Innistrad: Midnight Hunt to be eligible for renewal rewards!

Innistrad: Midnight Hunt

Will you try to ward off the coming dark? Or embrace the power of the encroaching darkness? Let us guess; you just want to check out all the new cards and new mechanics in a freshly rotated Standard environment.

Day & Night, Daybound & Nightbound

While we strongly recommend you checkout the aforementioned Innistrad: Midnight Hunt mechanics article for more info on how this new-to-Magic mechanic will work, let's showcase how it will work on MTG Arena, using our familiar friend Tavern Ruffian.

Tavern Ruffian
Tavern Smasher

As noted in the full mechanics article, when the game starts it's neither day nor night. When it becomes day, night, or day again (as these things tend to happen, in-game and otherwise) you will be shown a brief but impossible-to-miss visual indicator: a bright and golden sun for day, or a silvery full moon for night.

MTG Arena day indicator

MTG Arena night indicator

And while our tabletop companions will equip you with a card that can be used to remind you of the rules for daybound/nightbound cards that can also be used to manually track the current game state, on MTG Arena, players need look no further than the icon to the left of their screen where our emblems enjoy watching the game unfold. Hover over (or tap and hold on mobile devices) the reminder image to display the full reminder text, as shown in the screenshot below.

MTG Arena night reminder text

A few other important reminders:

  • You can hover over (or tap and hold on mobile devices) a transforming double-faced card to see the other face of the card. For daybound and nightbound creatures, you can right-click for the full rules reminder text.
  • Night and day don't affect casted cards on the stack. Using the above example, if you cast Tavern Ruffian during the night, it will be Tavern Ruffian on the stack. As the spell resolves, it will enter the battlefield as Tavern Smasher.


The other mechanic to appear on transforming double-faced cards in our latest foray on Innistrad is disturb. Unlike daybound and nightbound, which dictate card transformations on the battlefield, disturb allows you to cast the card transformed from your graveyard by paying its disturb cost. On MTG Arena, cards in your graveyard with disturb will appear as a "near-hand castable" just to the right of the cards in your hand, similar to other mechanics like escape and flashback.

Disturb mechanic with near-hand castable

When cast, the card will . . . well, transform as it's put on the stack, with a little extra spooky flare.

Disturb mechanic showing stack spooky flare


Coven is an ability word that's used to highlight abilities that get better if you control three or more creatures with different powers. Powers as in . . . power/toughness, the number of the left side of the backslash in the lower right of the card.

Some coven abilities are triggered. Some coven abilities are activated. Some coven abilities let a card do more things as it resolves—but all require that you control three or more creatures with different powers. And on MTG Arena, we're never out of candles, as candles are what we use to designate a coven ability as it resolves.

Coven mechanic candle image

Fall Cleaning


In case you missed these codes from our recent weekly blog announcement and on @MTG_Arena, here are some codes to address some of the dust from our not-quite-behind-the-scenes housekeeping and cleaning:

  • ParcelMyr – Our recent backend changes have been a bumpy road. Here's a parcel of presents to thank you for your patience!
  • ScaleUp – Midweek Magic code to receive the 3,000 XP advertised in the event.

Both codes expire on Thursday, September 15 at 8 a.m. PT, so be sure to redeem them before the start of maintenance if you wish to receive the rewards. And as our legal team is constantly reminding us to remind you: limit one (1) per MTG Arena account, void where prohibited.

Showing Off

As featured in our Magic Showcase 2021, there's a lot to look forward to in the upcoming year—and 2021 isn't over yet. We still have one more Standard set, Innistrad: Crimson Vow, for you to look forward to this year in addition to the four Standard sets we've announced for 2022.

Standard rotation graphic showing four announced 2022 sets

And yes, we will be bringing some of the Magic from Universes Beyond to MTG Arena, starting with The Lord of the Rings: Tales of Middle-earth™ in 2023.

Gandalf artwork from The Lord of the Rings: Tales of Middle-earth(tm)

As for what else we have planned for 2022, well—that's a bit beyond the hunt we have planned for today. It's past midnight, somewhere!

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