Question about counters

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I noticed some cards specify to add x number of +1/+1 counters to a target creature, while others state "target creature gets +x/+y" and not mention counters at all. Are these two categorized under separate buffs or are they both assumed to be "counters" in the way that auras are generally assumed to have targets?
if the card doesn't use the word "counter", it doesn't use counters

non-counter buffs are generally temporary, usually until end of turn, but there are a few exceptions (careful that at least one of these "exceptions" is a misprint, so check the oracle text)
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if the card doesn't use the word "counter", it doesn't use counters





Thanks! 
Auras always target when cast as a spell, it is not just "generally assumed". Once they leave the stack, though, they no longer target anything. And if they enter the battlefield in any other way, they do not target at all, you simply attach them to an object or player they can legally enchant if possible.

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http://community.wizards.com/forum/limited-sealed-and-draft/threads/4206961

 

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"Simple questions" usually need rather complex answers, while complex questions often come down to no more than a simple "yes" or "no".

 

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