Suspend is a keyword ability that debuted in Time Spiral.   It introduced time (in the form of turns) as a new resource, by allowing a player to remove a card with suspend from his or her hand and put a number of time counters on it. In each of that player's upkeep steps, a time counter is removed. When all counters are removed the spell is cast, and if it's a creature, with Haste.
From the Comprehensive Rules:
- 702.61. Suspend
- 702.61a Suspend is a keyword that represents three abilities. The first is a static ability that functions while the card with suspend is in a player’s hand. The second and third are triggered abilities that function in the exile zone. “Suspend N—[cost]” means “If you could begin to cast this card by putting it onto the stack from your hand, you may pay [cost] and exile it with N time counters on it. This action doesn’t use the stack,” and “At the beginning of your upkeep, if this card is suspended, remove a time counter from it,” and “When the last time counter is removed from this card, if it’s exiled, play it without paying its mana cost if able. If you can’t, it remains exiled. If you cast a creature spell this way, it gains haste until you lose control of the spell or the permanent it becomes.”
- 702.61b A card is "suspended" if it's in the exile zone, has suspend, and has a time counter on it.
- 702.61c Casting a spell as an effect of its suspend ability follows the rules for paying alternative costs in rules 601.2b and 601.2e–g.
- The phrase "if you could play this card from your hand" checks only for timing restrictions and permissions. This includes both what's inherent in the card's type (for example, if the card with suspend is a creature, it must be your main phase and the stack must be empty) and what's imposed by other abilities, such as flash or Meddling Mage's ability. Whether you could actually follow all steps in playing the card is irrelevant. If the card is impossible to play due to a lack of legal targets or an unpayable mana cost, for example, it may still be exiled with suspend.
- Exiling a card with its suspend ability is not playing that card. This action doesn't use the stack and can't be responded to.
- If a spell with suspend has targets, the targets are chosen when the spell is played, not when it's exiled.
- If the first triggered ability of suspend is countered, no time counter is removed. The ability will trigger again during its owner's next upkeep.
- When the last time counter is removed from a suspended card, the second triggered ability of suspend will trigger. It doesn't matter why the time counter was removed or whose effect removed it. (The Time Spiral reminder text is misleading on this point.)
- If the second triggered ability of suspend is countered, the card can't be played. It remains in the removed-from-the-game zone without any time counters on it for the rest of the game, and it's no longer considered suspended.
- If the second triggered ability of suspend resolves, the card's owner must play the spell if possible, even if that player doesn't want to. Normal timing considerations for the spell are ignored (for example, if the suspended card is a creature and this ability resolves during your upkeep, you're able to play the card), but other play restrictions are not ignored.
- If the second triggered ability of suspend resolves and the suspended card can't be played due to a lack of legal targets or a play restriction, for example, it remains in the exiled zone without any time counters on it for the rest of the game, and it's no longer considered suspended.
- As the second triggered ability of suspend resolves, if playing the suspended card involves an additional cost, the card's owner must pay that cost if able. If he or she can't, the card remains removed from the game. If the additional cost includes mana, the situation is more complex. If the player has enough mana in his or her mana pool to pay the cost, that player must do so. If the player can't possibly pay the cost, the card remains exiled. However, if the player has the means to produce enough mana to pay the cost, then he or she has a choice: The player may play the spell, produce mana, and pay the cost. Or the player may choose to play no mana abilities, thus making the card impossible to play because the additional mana can't be paid.
- A creature played via suspend comes into play with haste. It still has haste after the first turn it's in play as long as the same player controls it. As soon as another player takes control of it, it loses haste.
- Ith, High Arcanist -
Legendary Creature — Human Wizard
: Untap target attacking creature. Prevent all combat damage that would be dealt to and dealt by that creature this turn.
Suspend 4 — (Rather than cast this card from your hand, you may pay and exile it with four time counters on it. At the beginning of your upkeep, remove a time counter. When the last is removed, cast it without paying its mana cost. It has haste.)
- Lotus Bloom -
Suspend 3 — (Rather than cast this card from your hand, pay and remove it from the game with three time counters on it. At the beginning of your upkeep, remove a time counter. When you remove the last, cast it without paying its mana cost.)
, Sacrifice Lotus Bloom: Add three mana of any one color to your mana pool.
There is a total of 59 cards that involve suspend, which divide by color as such:
- Blue = 24 %
- Red = 22 %
- White = 18 %
- Black = 14 %
- Green = 14 %
- Artifact = 5 %
- Multicolor = 3 %
Content contained herein is current as of April 28, 2013.