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 Post subject: Banned List Update: April 2019
AgePosted: 2019-Apr-28 3:36 pm 
EDH Rules Committee
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Joined: 2006-May-24 10:14 am
Age: Elder Dragon
Location: Tampa, FL, USA
April 2019 Commander Banned List Update

CARDS
No Changes

RULES
Added Rule 0: These are the official rules of Commander. Local groups are welcome to modify them as they see fit. If you’d like an exception to these rules, especially in an unfamiliar environment, please get the approval of the other players before the game begins.

Rule 13 reworded for clarification: Abilities which bring card(s) you own from outside the game into the game (such as Wishes; Spawnsire of Ulamog; Karn, the Great Creator) do not function in Commander.

This is the first update after the formation of the Commander Advisory Group, and the CAG really rose to the occasion.

“No changes” on cards doesn’t really reflect the amount of discussion that went into our decision this time. The CAG had submitted to the RC their thoughts on the Banned List and the individual cards on it, but we (meaning both the RC and CAG) agreed there is a strong reason to take no action at this time. One of the major (and unanimous) points that came out of the joint RC/CAG meeting was that we’d like to update the Commander Philosophy document before making any further Banned List changes. We’re not going to engage in any sweeping overhauls, just make the language crisper, cleaner, and more concise. We haven’t changed the core philosophy of Commander: it is and always will be primarily a social format. As we frequently say, we want it to be the best that it can be on its own terms, and one of those terms is to have it be an alternative to tournament Magic. We continue to recognize that many different play styles are valid. One of the messages that we’ll be reinforcing in the new philosophy document is that pre-game discussion to make sure everyone is on the same page is vital—which led to our adoption of Rule 0.

Rule 0 has been part of Commander philosophy for more than a decade. Urged by the CAG, we simply decided to formalize it. Making it the first rule does two things. First, it lays out the baseline rules for the format. If you want to play official Commander, the rules that follow are set in stone. This becomes important in unfamiliar environments. When you go to a large event or play with people you don’t know, we want everyone to have the same basic expectations and understanding of what they’re getting into. Second, it underscores that quality communication is one of the best ways to ensure the best possible experience.

We reworked Rule 13 due to some ongoing confusion over the “officialness” of sideboards and wish boards. While (here comes Rule 0 again) we support local groups deciding what’s best for themselves in this regard, we wanted to clarify for the broader audience that no one can force you into letting “outside the game” cards work in a different way.

The other major discussion, driven by War of the Spark, was regarding planeswalkers as commanders. We will not be changing the definition of what can be a commander to allow all planeswalkers into the command zone. The RC and CAG were also unanimous on this point.

Expect to see more from the excellent advice that the CAG is offering to the RC in the next update, coinciding with the M20 release. Until then, enjoy War of the Spark, a set chock full of Commander goodies.

_________________
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