Magic The Gathering: Banned Cards

This post is about banned cards! there are currently 9 standard banned cards, and we will be looking at why they are banned. here are some words that you will need to know to understand this post:

  1. Out of print– you can’t get this card in a booster pack
  2. OP– Overpowered, should be banned because it is too good
  3. Banned– a card that you are not allowed to use in tournaments
  4. Landfall– a card ability that triggers when a land enters the battlefield. In Zendikar Rising, people think that a lot of landfall cards are OP.
  5. Wizards (of the coast) – the company that make MTG
  6. Standard – the most recent sets of MTG. right now the standard sets are Throne of Eldraine, Theros: Beyond Death, Core set 2021, Zendikar Rising, in that order from oldest to newest. These are the only sets you are allowed to use in “standard” tournaments.
  7. MTGA– Magic the Gathering Arena, an online version of MTG
  8. Adventure– a card feature introduced in Throne of Eldraine that adds an ability for a permanent (e.g. a creature) to do something before it enters the battlefield
  9. Legendary– you can only have one legendary copy of a card on the battlefield. you can play other legendary copies, but then you must sacrifice one of the legendary copies. this rule only applies to cards that are exactly the same (excluding full art and foil), so for example, you can have a Chandra, Novice Pyromancer and have a Chandra, Acolyte of Flame on the battlefield at the same time.

First, lets talk through two of the banned cards in detail.

Uro, Titian of Nature’s Wrath

blue and green, Theros: Beyond Death, Mythic rare

Uro was banned because it was OP landfall, in other words it is OP when used in decks with lots of landfall cards. Whenever it attacks or enters the battlefield, you gain life (so you are hard to beat) and you put a land card from your hand onto the battlefield (triggering all your landfall effects). Even though Uro does not have the landfall ability itself, it is still too OP in landfall decks because it triggers all your landfall abilities on other cards.

Omnath, Locus of Creation

white and blue and red and green, Zendikar Rising, Mythic rare

Omnath has been banned recently, probably because it was OP landfall, similar to Uro. however I actually disagree with this for two reasons. Firstly, it is hard to build a deck around it because it is blue while most landfall decks don’t use blue, from what i have seen on MTGA. Secondly, Scute Swarm, another OP landfall card, has not been banned even though it is more OP because it is green, and because it isn’t legendary but Omnath is.

Other banned cards

Here is a list of other banned cards:

Cauldron FamiliarBlackThrone of EldraineUncommon
Fires of InventionRedThrone of EldraineRare
Growth SpiralBlue and GreenRavnica AllegianceCommon
Oko, Thief of CrownsBlue and GreenThrone of EldraineMythic
Lucky CloverColourlessThrone of EldraineUncommon
Once Upon a TimeGreenThrone of EldraineRare
Escape to the WildsGreen and RedThrone of EldraineRare
other banned cards

Throne of Eldraine is home to most standard banned cards, and is all about the adventure ability and food tokens. Lucky Clover is an OP adventure card, and Oko, Thief of Crowns and Cauldron Familiar are both OP food token cards. Once Upon a Time, Fires of Invention, and Escape to the Wilds are all just generally OP cards. if you are looking to get MTG cards, Throne of Eldraine is a great set but i find that many cards are OP.