05 Jul 2017 3:18 PM +00:00 UTC

More Magic: The Gathering Cards Banned in 1V1 Commander

Commander is being split into two different formats in Magic Online. While "Commander" will be focused on multiplayer play, "Commander 1V1" will be focused on 1v1 play. The banned list for "Commander" is available at mtgcommander.net while the banned list of "Commander 1v1" will be managed by Magic R&D.

Today, Magic R&D's Brian Hawley has announced the changes that are being made for the Commander 1v1 banned list, and explains the reasoning for them. You can read the reasoning below via wizardsmtgo:

Since our last update to the Magic Online Commander format, a few troublesome trends have solidified. The unmatched success of disruptive blue decks has continued, and separate (though related) to that is the rise of Vial Smasher the Fierce
Vial Smasher the Fierce is banned.
Decks headlined by Vial Smasher have been an increasingly dominant part of the environment. While usually paired with Kraum, Ludevic's Opus, it's clear that Vial Smasher is the dominant factor in the success of these decks, providing too much damage for too low a cost. She is a clear rival to many of the Commanders already banned given her ability to win games essentially on her own backed up with a constant stream of disruption.
A philosophical aside:
Before diving into the next set of bans, I'd like to restate that our primary goal for the Magic Online Commander 1v1 format is to make the most fun experience possible. Color balance alone isn't a reason to alter a format, but lack of variety in play experience is. Our intention is to try and trim excess power from clearly dominant decks to open up space for a variety of decks to succeed, not to introduce churn by adjusting the ban list.
Ponder is banned.
Preordain is banned.
Brainstorm is banned.
There have been a variety of blue Commanders that have shown success with the same core game plan, and in aggregate they mean that the variety of gameplay in the metagame is lower than we'd like. In our May 24thupdate we took an incremental step towards weakening these decks, and this is a similar step. Further constricting the ability of these decks to power through their library should lower their consistency somewhat.
Treachery is banned.
Aside from strong card selection, Treachery is one of the few cards played in nearly every blue deck, largely from its sheer power. When drawn, it's a card that provides a tempo swing that's often impossible to recover from, and when looking for ways to weaken this style of deck it's a clear enough outlier in strength to warrant a ban.
Biorhythm is unbanned.
Limited Resources is unbanned.
Painter's Servant is unbanned.
Trade Secrets is unbanned.
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At the inception of this format, the ban list was intended to support both 1v1 and multiplayer Commander, and these cards were banned for multiplayer consideration. Since this list now exclusively applies to 1v1 play, they are being removed. It's worth noting that despite being listed in the multiplayer category of the initial ban list, Sensei's Divining Top remains banned for the same logistical reasons that caused it to be banned then.

The changes will take effect after July 5's downtime. Back in May, 3 cards were banned from the 1V1 Commander format. The next banned announcement will be on August 28, 2017.

What do you think about these bannings? Do you think these cards deserve to be banned?

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