Steady Progress allows you to choose any player, and put another counter on them, of a type that already is on them.

I am only aware of poison counters on players. Are there others?

  • 6
    Side note: proliferate (the mechanic that's on Steady Progress and another dozen or so cards) doesn't target. You just choose players and permanents; it doesn't matter if they're hexproof or otherwise untargetable.
    – Cascabel
    Oct 22, 2015 at 1:09
  • 1
    Side note to @Cascabel's side note: "choosing" players and permanents (instead of choosing counters) means you always add another copy of each counter on the chosen player or permanent, you can't pick and choose. So you can't proliferate a creature's shield counter but not its stun counter, or proliferate just a player's poison counters without also proliferating their experience counters.
    – BradC
    Jan 16 at 21:01

1 Answer 1


At present, there are four types of counters that can be placed on players.

  1. Poison (Originally seen in Legends, prevalent in Scars of Mirrodin block)
  2. Experience (Commander 2015)
  3. Energy (written as {E}) (Kaladesh)
  4. Tickets (written as {TK}) (Unfinity)

We can search through Scryfall for cards that give players counters to determine that those are the only ones. As we can see with cards like Caress of Phyrexia and Aether Hub, cards that explicitly put specific kinds of counters on players use the wording

[Player] get(s) [amount] [counter description]

Since Scryfall supports regular expression search, we can turn that into a regular expression to search for cards with that wording. For now, let's see what we get if we pretend that counters are the only things players can get. We can search for that with the following regular expression:

re:"(player|opponent|you) (get|gets)\b"

This mostly finds relevant cards, but it also finds some irrelevant cards, including planeswalkers that grant emblems and Paradox Haze. So, we can also exclude cards that give players emblems or additional votes or steps, or make players get you something:

o:/(player|opponent|you) (get|gets)\b(?! (+|-|you|an emblem|an additional|a boon))/ -is:funny

This is the same search before, but it looks at the next word to exclude sentences like "target opponent gets you [something]", "you get an emblem", "that player gets an additional [something]", "creatures attacking you get -1/-0", and "you get a boon...". It also removes joke cards. This results in 83 cards, all of which put some sort of counter on a player. A visual inspection shows that they all add poison, experience, energy, or ticket counters.

  • 2
    how do you know this to be true? I accepted, because you seem to know everything about MtG, but is there an easy or straight forward way to determine the answer to this question?
    – John
    Oct 24, 2015 at 11:32
  • 3
    I added an explanation of how to determine/verify this. Does that help?
    – murgatroid99
    Oct 24, 2015 at 17:28
  • 1
    It's unfortunate that when someone creates such a significant rewrite, that so significantly improves an answer as murgatroid99 and doppelgreener have done on this answer, that we can't vote for that particular edit. Clearly this is a labor of love for both of you, and both of you are to be commended! Nicely done.
    – John
    Oct 4, 2016 at 14:58
  • 1
    I know. But I wanted that list at the top to be consistent with the cards I found in the searches, so I thought that was the best available option.
    – murgatroid99
    Aug 23, 2022 at 19:53
  • 2
    The fallout universes beyond reveals has added rad counters
    – Caleth
    Jan 16 at 15:47

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .