This entry is part 62 of 79 in the series Rival's Duel

erdnHello everyone and welcome to another episode of Rival’s Duel. This episode is an episode that promises to be controversial, despite the fact that Eric and Nole pretty much agree on the topic at hand. This is an episode that has been a long time coming, tonight the Rival’s take on the banned list. We are going card by card, saying the cards we think could come off the list, and which ones have earned their spots and deserve their place forever stuck in our trade binders. Do you agree with us? Give us a listen and let us know in the comments below. As always, full shownotes after the break.








Intros and Emails:

We take a moment to answer a listener’s email about removal (this was originally going to be our entire episode, however we realized that it wouldn’t be a very meaty episode. We hope we answered your question.)


Main Topic:

Nothing can start an argument at an EDH table more assuredly than “I wish they’d unban X.” While some of the cards rightly deserve their place in this list (I’m looking at you, Limited Resources), others are more open to discussion. We look at all the cards on the list, and whether or not we feel they could be set free. There is also the bonus game of “Guess what Nole said that had to be bleeped.”



We need your help. Our next episode is going to be discussing what cards should be on the banned list that are currently allowed in play. Give us your lists of cards you think should be banned in the comments below.

Contact Eric: // @ThatBonvieGuy

Contact Nole: // @MtGNole




Series Navigation<< Rival’s Duel 61- Shadows Over Innistrad Commander ReviewRival’s Duel 63- This Episode Should be Banned >>

7 Responses to “Rival’s Duel 62- This episode is Banned”

  1. Grandpa Growth said

    I wrote extensively about the banned list back on The General Zone. I think you guys have some interesting thoughts, but I want to comment on the justification of certain cards being banned, acknowledging that this is beyond our control. I don’t feel good about banning any card simply because it’s secondary market price climbs too high. That precedent would irritate even more me if you applied it to newer cards. What if dual lands, Force of Will, Wasteland, Jace’s, etc. suddenly crossed an arbitrary line? Would we want to live in a world where we can’t play Tropical Island because people have different hobby budgets?

    I have engaged in hundreds of hours of Edh banned list discussion and there is a good chance that at any given moment I am arguing about it somewhere. At the end of that, I find the idea of the EDHRC’s banned list patently absurd.

    That all being said there are only four cards that I can conceive of as being acceptable to add to the banned list: Mana Crypt, Mana Vault, Sol Ring, and Strip Mine.

    • kurt cobain said

      So yawgmoths bargain, griselbrand is ok for you then. I guess you dont play casual edh ( what it was made for) so what you consider bannable/not bannable is irrelevant!

      • Grandpa Growth said

        A lack of unity in the world views of the EDH player community is the exact reason we need to have discussions about stuff like this, not a reason to shut those conversations off. That diversity of ideas and opinions is what makes Commander great, not a few specific cards.

        The specious logic underlying the banned list is the core problem. I don’t want to draw lines in the sand, because then we all have to argue about where to place it. If we think paying life for cards is too powerful, ban all cards that do it. I don’t think Bargain or the great Grissely Bizzely are a problem. Apparently you disagree, but they are already banned. That’s the premise. The question was: what should be added to the list. For consistency’s sake the logical thing to do is ban Necropotence in this example.

        • Kinghonkey said

          I think maybe playing in a mostly 1v1 meta has something to do with your argument. There are certain cards, like Shahrazad or Sway of the Stars, that make the game far less “fun” (I realize there are 8 types of fun…let’s say, low Fellowship type of fun) for groups rather than a problem to be solved by your one other opponent. 1V1 has a much lower Fellowship quotient, and a much higher Challenge score. Others, like Ancestral Recall, are super powerful, but don’t affect the whole board nearly as much. I can actually see your suggestions, like Sol Ring et al, being added to the ban list and wouldn’t have too much of a problem with it.

          As far as price and availability, I agree that that’s kind of a poor reason to ban a card. While I don’t own any of the Power Nine, as a former owner of a couple Candelabras of Tawnos and a current owner of two Berserks, a Diamond Valley and three Gaea’s Cradles, I wouldn’t want to be punished for having bought the cards when they were much, much cheaper. EDH is not the format that drove those prices upward, so it shouldn’t be punished for it.

          I’m perfectly fine with having a rules committee determining ban lists. All healthy formats have one. You can attempt to argue logic in a format based, in part, upon feeling, “fun” and fairness. If a ban seems arbitrary or absurd to you, I know that Sheldon and some of the other RC members peruse the message boards on Salvation and the mother site, so maybe they’ll be swayed by your arguments. Conversely, you can do what they advise, it’s your baby, if you can convince your play group not to have a ban list, more power to you.

          • Grandpa Growth said

            I couldn’t agree more. The best place for ban decisions is at the local level because so many of the perceived metagame problems with particular cards are so closely tied to the decks and the people we regularly see use them. We heard Sheldon talking about this concept about a month ago on CC prime and the rest of the rules committee is united with him in standing behind the idea of local ban lists be a much more comfortable way to regulate the format.

    • Jeremy Parsons said

      I like Sol Ring as multiplayer randomness between relatively even decks. I see going to Mana Crypt as trying too hard to win a casual game.

      As to other cards talked of by the podcast: Upheaval and Sway the Stars allowed for such one sided effects. Lets balance the game by floating mana, bouncing all including lands, then dropping all my artifacts back into play when you have nothing. Not even a land. You’ll notice later cards like World Purge also include the words “.. and empty the god damn mana pool.”

      On Sylvan Primordial I always figured the reason was the lack of a may clause. Four player game? Ok, drop the primordial. One player has a must kill target, a second has a target of opportunity, and the third player has nothing, and you have no choice but to kill their land because there is no may clause. The ramp was always just so incidental to me.

  2. Kinghonkey said

    Most of the cards I would want on the banned list come from personal experience and feeling rather than some compelling argument. I could see Nether Void, Land Equilibrium and Invoke Prejudice because I’ve been completely locked out of entire games by them, but I don’t see them regularly played.

    I personally loathe an overloaded Cyclonic Rift, only because it _is_ so overplayed and annoying. It resets too much of the game played so far instead of creating an interactive game state, which I think is the part of the argument against Worldfire and Upheaval. Essentially, play blue, ramp until you have the overload, sit back and counter threats against you, make sure you have a counter in hand (preferably free), reset everyone else’s board, play Sunder if you can for the full Troll face. Yes, you don’t _have_ to play the overload, but you’re going to anyway.

    If my playgroup has more than three people, many people will scoop to a late game Scrambleverse, might as well play Shahrazad. Again, this is all personal hatred rather than anything else.

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