If you could un-ban 1 card what would it be?

Commander (EDH) forum

Posted on July 30, 2019, 3:04 p.m. by Art-n-Lutherie

Among the banned cards in commander some are clearly more broken than others but if you could bring back one card what would it be? For me, I just want Prophet of Kruphix back in my simic deck!!

GhostChieftain says... #2

There are so many that don't really need to be on there. Sylvan Primordial might be my pick realistically, but I would enjoy having back my prophet and my Pengine

July 30, 2019 3:11 p.m.

TypicalTimmy says... #3


We have Necropotence and now Vilis, Broker of Blood, both of which allow you to trade life for cards.

I understand Gris has lifelink to perpetuate the engine, and that is broken, but you have three opponents who should work together to remove the threat. If you want to dump 21 life into him to draw 1/5th of your deck out in response, that's on you.

Specifically I would want this:

  • Banned in 1v1
  • Restricted in regular (Okay in +99, banned as General)
  • 100% okay in cEDH
July 30, 2019 3:11 p.m. Edited.

TypicalTimmy says... #4

GhostChieftain, if you use a flicker ability or a mass clone, you can destroy their entire mana base while growing your own.

It says "nonCREATURE", not "nonLAND".

July 30, 2019 3:18 p.m.

ToffMcSoft says... #5

Flash this card is just stupid broken w/ Hulk.

July 30, 2019 3:22 p.m.

DrukenReaps says... #6

I would un-ban everything and make a banned as commander list only.

July 30, 2019 3:38 p.m.

GhostChieftain says... #7

TypicalTimmy yep. Well aware of this. Same thing can be done with Acidic Slime, so I would say it is not that broken.

July 30, 2019 4:01 p.m.

TypicalTimmy says... #8

Acidic Slime hits one opponent and one target, not all three and thus three targets. Also, you don't get lands in return.

That's like comparing a Forest to Gaea's Cradle; Same concept, vastly different outcomes

July 30, 2019 4:09 p.m.

Art-n-Lutherie says... #9

Think Emrakul, the Aeons Torn is too broken to be in 99?

July 30, 2019 4:15 p.m.

DuTogira says... #10

Form of the Squirrel. That card is needed in every format.

July 30, 2019 4:27 p.m.

AKBZ says... #11

TypicalTimmy I’m not sure why you are calling out GhostChieftain’s pick. The question at hand is “what one card would you pick to unban if you could” not “should Sylvan Primordial be unbanned”. You call out someone’s choice, then, on top of that, don’t actually name a card you want unbanned. I’m calling you out for not following the guidelines of the forum. If you want to talk about cards merits of banning and unbanning commander cards, create a forum. As for my choice of cards to unban Primeval Titan would be my first card. I enjoy ramp, while putting pressure on my opponents. Fills both roles that no other cards, in my opinion, are filling in commander.

July 30, 2019 4:49 p.m.

dbpunk says... #12

Honestly Prophet of Kruphix. I remember that the week it was banned I just finished building a Sultai deck. It wasn't good enough without Prophet to keep as a Sultai deck, so I built it as a Golgari deck instead. And I had like three copies of it.

If only it wasn't banned.

July 30, 2019 4:53 p.m.

shadow63 says... #13

Realistically I'd say bio rythm. In realistically I'd say prime time. But I dont see why rythm needs to be on the list

July 30, 2019 5:06 p.m.

TypicalTimmy my point was that in your example, you are using the card in an unintended fashion that happens to be very strong. If you can flicker enough to get rid of all of their lands, great! It will likely not happen though unless it is built specifically to do just that. Why is Armageddon or Jokulhaups okay? That comboed with a Teferi's Protection makes it one sided even and is easier than flickering or reanimating a 7 drop multiple times. I get that people don't like land destruction, but if they don't like it they should houserule it out as many groups do. I for one welcome it as long as you can end the game soon afterwards. You blow up my lands this game, I combo out on turn 2-4 at instant speed the next. I am perfectly aware of what the card can do, and I am perfectly okay with it because it is not as good as many things that can be done otherwise.

Tl;dr Land destruction is not a problem unless unaccompanied by a swift wincon following.

July 30, 2019 5:15 p.m.

Caerwyn says... #15

For myself, I’d pick Shahrazad. I love cards with fun, unique effects that just scream “please find a way to abuse me.” Granted, I’ll accept that wouldn’t be great for the game.

For a more realistic change, I’d appreciate the ban-as-Commander rule being reinstated.

AKBZ - TypicalTimmy suggested Griselbrand. Perhaps it’s not a good idea to call someone out before looking at all their posts?

Personally, I think it is great when there’s some back-and-forth on threads like this. It turns the thread into an area where we can both share our thoughts and have some good old fashioned discussion of the game. I’ll be critiquing the choice of Griselbrand below, and fully would welcome a response.

Griselbrand’s problem is not only that it is a powerful draw engine with lifelink, but the fact it requires no work to be good (Vilis requires ways to enable it) and gives you the cards instantly (unlike necropotence). Griselbrand basically reads “cast this card, then draw into all your combo pieces and win. That’s pretty devastating for a card that can easily be cheated into play.

July 30, 2019 5:25 p.m.

Megalomania says... #16

Leovold, Emissary of Trest. I know it’s broken. I still want to use it though.

July 30, 2019 5:30 p.m.

SynergyBuild says... #17

Black Lotus, no one I play against has one to abuse ;)

I'd be the only one to have its value.

July 30, 2019 5:41 p.m. Edited.

chirz2792 says... #18

I know it won’t ever happen but I’d want to unban Recurring Nightmare.

July 30, 2019 6:34 p.m.

FLATSO99 says... #19

I would definitly choose Panoptic Mirror. Imprint it with Worst Fears in a Sen Triplets deck and your opponent never gets to play. I understand that its super OP with extra turn effects and the like. But I think that its mana intensive enough not to have a supper crippling impact on the format.



July 30, 2019 6:38 p.m.

SynergyBuild says... #20

FLATSO99 just use Mindslaver and Prototype Portal.

Also, I'd could argue for unbanning some dumb card like Paradox Engine for example, but before answering I'd take out a loan and buyout all of the copies online, then answer with the card I bought out, to make a million irl dollars.

July 30, 2019 6:43 p.m.

FLATSO99 says... #21


Thats an awesome idea lol:)

July 30, 2019 6:48 p.m.

AKBZ says... #22

Caerwyn ha. Yeah, I missed that. I apologize for missing that. That said, what back and forth are you talking about? That isn’t what happened. You have a forum where all it is supposed to be is a person throwing out a card they wanted unbanned. Instead, you have a person calling out and judging a persons pick. At some point, all these cards got put on the banlist for one reason or another. That means all have a reason attached. Sooooooo, what does him pointing out the reason it’s banned have anything to do with the pick? Nooooottthhhhiiinng. He was just being a troll. And that isn’t cool. And, once again, this isn’t the forum for that back and forth. Nobody should be challenging anyone’s picks, because it is an opinion they have.

July 30, 2019 10:44 p.m.

Woiteck says... #23

For me it's Recurring Nightmare as well. In my opinion it’s the best card ever printed, shame I will never play with it (for understandable reasons, though).

Prophet of Kruphix and the recent Paradox Engine are so stupid to play against, I’m glad they’re gone a hope that this effect will not appear on another card.

July 31, 2019 8:02 a.m.

Grixis776 says... #24

Gifts Ungiven call me crazy but if we have a card like Intuition in the format, I don’t see why I can’t have my gifts.

July 31, 2019 8:11 a.m.

smackjack says... #25

Paradox Engine for sure

July 31, 2019 8:41 a.m.

LeonSpires says... #26

Tolarian Academy is the card i would un-ban for EDH. Serra's Sanctum and Gaea's Cradle are legal. Is the academy that much worse?

July 31, 2019 9:46 a.m.

Woiteck says... #27

LeonSpires: Well, there aren’t that many 0 cmc enchantments and creatures....

July 31, 2019 10:17 a.m.

Dylan says... #28

Long post incoming

Firstly there are several cards which are currently banned that I think have no place on the banlist. Frankly I think that Sylvan Primordial, Prophet of Kruphix, and Paradox Engine are not in any way breaking the format. I hark back to Epochalyptik's previous posts in which he highlighted the RC's unwillingness to accept the fact that commander is more then just a causal format but also a competitive format.

If a group wishes implement a house ban on cards that are "moderately powerful" that's on them, I dont think the RC needs to ban those cards however.

As far as a card I would like to see unbanned, I think Iona, Shield of Emeria would be a fun card to have in the format, specifically I think it would make white much more playable in the EDH meta-game.

I think the big difference with Griselbrand that is different then the other cards mentioned, is that it is instant and free to use the ability (besides the negligible life loss) I think that unbanning this card would be a big mistake as it upon resolution effectively wins the game. In essence what Caerwyn said.

I think there's nothing wrong with making a respectful comment about what someone else thinks should be removed from the banlist. Calling someone out for not suggesting a card, being incorrect, and offering a fake, sarcastic, apology is rude however.

I agree that given that Intuition is legal, Gifts Ungiven which is a very similar card should also be allowed.

Sylvan Primordial is not that strong, given that Tooth and Nail is legal, and can win the game on the spot, I fail to see how Sylvan Primordial breaks the game or is on the same power level as other cards on the list.

Unbanning Tolarian Academy would make artifact decks incredibly powerful, and would be a big mistake for the format.

Instead of bringing something back from the banlist can we bring back the old tuck rule?

Regards, Dylan

July 31, 2019 5:10 p.m. Edited.

enpc says... #29

Dylan: the problem with Sylvan Primordial is that it was quite format warping (much more than even PEngine). Because it ramps you for 3 while attacking each opponents' mana base (let's face it, that's what you're hitting), it would provide insane and unbalanced advNtage, especially for decks designed to either cheat it out early, or to ramp it out early. And those decks would then recur it over and over.

But the problem is that it wouldn't end the game. At least cards like Tooth and Nail, Paradox Engine, etc. (For most decks at least) would actually represent a win condition. Once the card is played, the game will be over shortly after, unless it is interrupted. Primordial on the other hand did not offer this, it just created unfair advantage.

July 31, 2019 6:07 p.m.

Dylan says... #30

enpc - Cards that create "unfair advantage'' should not be banned, simply because they are powerful. I don't think ramping for three and destroying a land is that good in comparison to the other cards on the banlist or in comparison to some of the powerful cards legal at the present.

Also how was Sylvan Primordial "Format Warping", not every deck played it or needed to play it order to be considered a "playable deck".

July 31, 2019 6:14 p.m. Edited.

Dylan says... #31

Sylvan Primordial being cheated into play does not win the game, as you pointed out. There is no reason to ban it.

I don't even think the advantage it creates should be labeled as "unfair". In all honesty destroying three non-creature permanents and ramping three is not that powerful.

July 31, 2019 6:19 p.m. Edited.

Dylan says... #32

EDH is the only format in which often times winning in the most optimal way possible isn't the goal. So people will never agree as far as which cards should be considered "Broken" or "Bannable".

July 31, 2019 6:26 p.m.

MindAblaze says... #33

The point about Prophet of Kruphix and Sylvan Primordial being “format warping” is more about the casual environments where everybody and their dog is copying, killing, stealing and reanimating them as soon as the hit the board. Powerful effects are desirable. For “cEDH” there are stronger things to be doing than fighting over a creature.

For me it’s a toss up between Recurring Nightmare and Gifts Ungiven. I would probably want Recurring Nightmare. That card is so fun.

July 31, 2019 7:39 p.m.

LeonSpires says... #34

@ Woiteck yes there are a lot of 0 cast artifacts. However I still stand by that unbaning Tolarian Academy wouldn't hurt the format. Most of the 0 cast artifacts don't do anything and most of the others have downsides. Yes given a god hand it can be broken. But a god hand for flash hulk requires fewer cards to go off turn one. Plus Tolarian Academy might shake a few things up in cEDH.

July 31, 2019 8:08 p.m.

jaymc1130 says... #35

Honestly there are cards I would choose to additionally ban before unbanning anything already on the list.

July 31, 2019 8:30 p.m.

enpc says... #36

Dylan: While the place where the banlist is most important is competitive play, in the large band of not-competitive-but-not-bottom-of-the-barrel decks, either every deck that could run Sylvan Primordial did, and a lot of decks would run ways of stealing it. Plus on top of this, there was a large focus on getting it into play. It was the number one pitch and reanimate target and a lot of creature tutors (unless they were in response to something specific) would just go for it. Same thing as Primeval Titan before it.

Now, something that is a staple in decks doesn't inherently make it bad, Birds of Paradise is a staple in any 2+ colour deck. But unlike Sylvan Primordial it didn't skew play around the card, as MindAblaze pointed out. When that happens (and especially when the card doesn't provide a win condition in and of itself), I can support the banning of that card.

The differnce compared to something like Paradox Engine is that while PE can skew a game around it, the card is more suited to being used as a win condition. When it comes down, the game should be ending that turn. Not to mention that there is a host of removal in most colours that can deal with PE, whereas unless you're running Blue for counterspells, there are very few cards that can stop the bulk of Primordial's value (becuase you're not playing it because it has reach...). Yes, I know they exist, but short of a dedicated stax deck, people wont be running Torpor Orb.

Now don't get me wrong, in the spirit of the thread, Sylvan Primordial is a very good card and there would be a lot of deck which would look very different if it was unbanned, however I know why it was banned in the first place.

July 31, 2019 8:35 p.m.

Caerwyn says... #37

Art-n-Lutherie - I just noticed no one answered your follow-up question. Personally, I would say Emrakul, the Aeons Torn is probably too good a card to be in the 99. I'll explain why I think that, and I think the explanation might be helpful for some of the other discussions on this thread.

First, why does the Rules Committee ban cards? The RC does not "ban cards which are only problematic if you build around them" but rather cards that are broken even if you are not specifically building for them. Source. This is the reason Paradox Engine was banned--not because it is a great combo piece for winning the game, but because it combos with mana rocks/dorks, something your deck is already running. You can slot PE into any deck, and it will pretty much also give you a huge advantage, even if you don't have the combo assembled.

On the other hand, look at Food Chain. On its own, Food Chain is not going to give you a huge advantage--you have to build your entire deck, with a very specific set of cards, to win with it.

Emrakul, the Aeons Torn falls into that first category--a powerful card in her own right where the only "build around" is ramp--something your deck is already going to be doing. Once she hits the field, she's a powerful creature that's near-impossible to remove; she can't be countered; she provides you an extra turn; she wipes out six of your opponent's permanents when she swings. You can slot her into pretty much any deck that runs ramp, and she'll put you drastically ahead if you happen to draw into her. To use Sheldon's words "[i]t’s a card that makes the game devolve into a war over a single card whenever it hits the table." Source.

July 31, 2019 9:12 p.m.

@Caerwyn thanks for that. Very well thought out explanation. I guess I would just love a chance - even once - to slam an Emrakul, the Aeons Torn during a match and see the looks on people’s faces! Alas, ‘tis not to be.

This is been a fun thread! Thanks for everyone that’s contributed to it!

July 31, 2019 9:20 p.m.

Woiteck says... #39

LeonSpires: Oh, I didn’t want to argue or make fun of your choice and I’m sorry if it sounded like that. It’s just that you asked what makes the Academy worse than the other 2 cards and I wrote the one thing I think makes the biggest difference. Btw I’m a huge fan of artifact decks so I would definitely play the Academy and be hated at the table.

August 1, 2019 3:02 a.m.

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