Commander (EDH) forum

Posted on July 12, 2021, 11:16 a.m. by Gabe_The_Controller

The Rules Committee banned Hullbreacher today. Look up the commander rules committee if you want more info and to see the announcement.

TriusMalarky says... #2

Here and here.

As someone who enjoys high power play, stax, and other things often considered degenerate, I say "good riddance". Any card that can singlehandedly turn you into the archenemy is not healthy or very fun. It's why Leovold was banned, why Sylvan Primordial was banned, and, honestly, half the commander banlist.

July 12, 2021 11:53 a.m.

brianizbrewtal says... #3

Only arch enemy until HullyB gets KO'd or exiled! So disappointed my guy had to get fired :/ uncool

July 12, 2021 12:11 p.m.

griffstick says... #4

I want to see Dockside Extortionist banned too

July 12, 2021 12:25 p.m.

TriusMalarky says... #5

eh, Dockside is just a big accelerant. He's good and obviously pushed, but not really detrimental to the format. It's like Sol Ring -- good and definitely enables some crap, but he's not part of a two card "nobody else has a hand and also I get 20 something extra mana" combo.

July 12, 2021 12:44 p.m.

griffstick says... #6

I just hate it when a player goes from 3 mana to 12 mana on turn 3. Feels very unfair to me. And it's just 1 card. Not a combo.

July 12, 2021 2:11 p.m. Edited.

Pikobyte says... #7

Hullbreacher banned is just awesome :-)

July 12, 2021 3 p.m.

Yisan says... #8

I don't and never will understand creature bans given the amount of removal/counter/burn spells that exist. I don't play haul breacher I don't own a haul breacher but if one gets cast and NOBODY at the table has an answer, good on you! Creature bans always come across as "I don't play that so you shouldn't either" or " waaaaa I don't want to play the cards I need to deal with that".

July 12, 2021 3:36 p.m.

TriusMalarky says... #9

Yisan Hullbreacher would honestly need a ban if it wasn't a creature.

July 12, 2021 4:01 p.m.

DoomNoodle says... #10

yeah if the table lets it resolve and its not removed before the round is over thats on your play group. interaction exists for a reason but hey it is what it is!

July 12, 2021 4:10 p.m.

Pikobyte says... #11

Before the round is over? That stupid thing has flash. You can literally flash it in in response to an opponent casting a wheel and call it a day.

July 12, 2021 4:22 p.m.

I thought Corrosion was a pretty solid answer to this...

July 12, 2021 4:41 p.m.

golgarigirl says... #13

I'm a little sad, but not sad to see it go. I'm sad that this card was specifically designed for commander, and it was pretty obvious the design was at least contentious from the start. Which means the designers either didn't know the format, or didn't care. You can literally add, omit, or switch a few words around and still keep the card in 'powerful but fair' territory.

July 12, 2021 6:34 p.m. Edited.

RNR_Gaming says... #14

griffstick - Dockside Extortionist only puts you ahead if your opponents are ahead - like, if no one has artifacts or enchantments it's just a 1/1 goblin for 2. Sure, if your opponents are super ahead it becomes an awesome combo enabler but at face value it's just a good card that scales; which is what most commander players want.

July 12, 2021 6:56 p.m.

shadow63 says... #15

Yisan the commander bans are decided upon by a small group of people and ate meant to be used as a general guideline so if your playgroup is ok with it you can keep using it

July 12, 2021 9:39 p.m.

shadow63 says... #16

July 12, 2021 9:40 p.m.

RNR_Gaming says... #17

shadow63 - I believe they addressed those cards in the article. Being 4cmc and having both a pip and narset being at sorcery speed keeps them in check. They are powerful cards but they're not splashable and have a reasonable opportunity cost.

July 12, 2021 9:50 p.m.

I don’t understand the argument “if you let it resolve and get back to the person who cast it” as a valid argument for why it shouldn’t be banned. People likely don’t play enough removal or counter magic, but in edh there is a chance that you don’t have the answer, or if you have an answer it’s not instant speed or you’re tapped out when the time comes. Add a wheel effect instead of getting 1 card (if not your turn) like you would with Narset, Parter of Veils you and the non HB players are left with nothing and the HB player has a non-zero number of cards and a minimum of 3x-1 cards where x was the greatest number of cards in hand (assuming Dark Deal the lowest level of wheels). Now that the HB player has cards and mana to use they likely drew into protection on the off chance that you do top deck an answer in the one card you’re allowed per turn. Notion Thief does have the same issue as HB, but as the RC mentioned the higher mana cost and the extra pip make it a less likely card to show up.

If it wasn’t clear through my wall of text above I’m in favor of this banning. I’ve been on both sides of the HB and it’s definitely not fun to play with/against. All this coming from a recovering Leovold, Emissary of Trest player (rest easy my sweet prince). The HB banning is probably the best ban IMO since Prophet of Kruphix .

July 13, 2021 2:19 a.m.

RambIe says... #19

why shouldn't it be banned ?, because its just to easy prevent/remove.
If they had to ban a card i would have preferred Narset, Parter of Veils to hit the list instead. there is less answers to narset making it more likely to stay if it hits the board. Next if you do fall into a wheel trap worse one for example Echo of Eons . Hullbreacher gives player upto 36 mana and access to 14 cards which will most likely end the game. as were with Narset, Parter of Veils the game comes to a screeching halt and most players just die from conceding to boredom.
but there is hope, i am still completely positive that the new approach they have been taking for cedh combined with the new cards they have been releasing will ultimately lead to many more cards being banned. eventual turning edh into an off shoot of modern.

July 13, 2021 9:36 a.m.

Yisan says... #20

[shadow63] I could say the same in reverse and say if your playgroup isn't OK with it then don't. I don't have a problem with bans in general but the argument of "if your group is OK with it you can still do it" is just a bad argument. If you're worried about beginning players only a jerk would whip out their $1000+ dollar cedh deck and immediately lock out a table of new players. This like all creatures was a deal withable "problem" that shouldn't have been banned

July 13, 2021 10:16 a.m.

Caerwyn says... #21

A subcutaneous reading of the ban announcement shows why the Rules Committee discarded the "just run removal" argument. Per the announcement, their big concern was not just that it provided value to its controller, but rather by the fact it was being used offensively "strip players hands".

The Rules Committee's concern was that, once resolved, a Hullbreacher can be quite hard to remove--each player was likely forced to discard their hand to a wheel effect, and thus, unless they had instant-speed interaction and open mana, any removal spells they might have had available are now gone. As such, opponents are forced to wait until someone topdecks a removal spell before the Hullbreacher can resolve, and, until someone does, the Hullbreacher's controller can benefit consistently from it being on the field.

Sheldon is not a particularly good writer and frequently leaves out key reasoning when he drafts his ban announcement. It is quite clear that he is one of those people who knows exactly what he is saying, but never bothers to read the posts from the perspective of someone who is not a mind reader. When reading any ban announcement, it is important to look under the surface of the text and try and derive what the Rules Committee, through Sheldon, was trying to say. Often a bit of critical reading can clarify why the R.C. made a decision that otherwise seems questionable.

As for why Narset and Notion Thief were not banned:

"The additional hoops required (an additional color pip for Notion Thief, and sorcery speed for Narset) appear to be keeping them to the appropriate level of play, though we’ll continue to keep an eye on them."

July 13, 2021 10:29 a.m.

RambIe says... #22

There really is no argument to be made, The power levels of instant vs sorcery speeds has been clearly proven time and again. Just personal preference if for some reason i fall victim to a wheel trap i would still rather it be Hullbreacher in hopes that the extra mana will just end the game.
On another note: i noticed some Dockside Extortionist hate. To add fuel to that fire, i personally have witnessed a turn 2 Dockside Extortionist into a Twinflame end the game in a Magda, Brazen Outlaw deck.

July 13, 2021 11:33 a.m.

plakjekaas says... #23

Nobody complains about Spirit of the Labyrinth . The part that makes it asymmetrical is the part that makes Hullbreacher too powerful for its own good. If a wheel + Hullbreacher would strip all hands, and leave the owner with just a bunch of mana, it would be a lot more of a buildaround card than a utility piece that every blue deck could play because it's only upside in every deck.

I bet that would be a white card, if it ever got printed.

July 13, 2021 1:16 p.m.

The play pattern I've seen all too many times is this:

Player 1: casts Hullbreacher

Player 2: [thinking they're clever] casts Counterspell

P1: Counterspell , Windfall

P2: :(

July 13, 2021 2:48 p.m.

DoomNoodle says... #25

you would need an instant speed wheel though if someone is trying to Windfall while Counterspell and Hullbreacher are on the stack your group is doing it wrong if im looking at your comment correctly.

July 13, 2021 3:53 p.m.

DoomNoodle says... #26

and to add Hullbreacher hasnt resolved so his trigger wouldnt apply to a windfall anyway.

July 13, 2021 3:54 p.m.

DoomNoodle says... #27

disregard im an idiot and didnt see the p2 counterspell before the windfall xD xD

July 13, 2021 3:55 p.m.

Ojallday says... #28

I personally am against the ban. Like other members have pointed out there is an excess of removal for this type of permanent, a lot of it at instant speed. Not to menion that to abuse Hullbreacher fully on our own turn you need a minimum of 6 mana, more if it is an expensive wheel and even more mana if you want to have protection for the combo. So if a player is trying to close out the game on turn 6 or 7 I'm not that bothered, they have the resources now to end the game without opponents stopping them and we can move on to the next game. Other players wheeling is where breacher shines, which can be abusive but you as a player and others in your pod should not be tapping out each turn and you shoud have way to interact with players at instant speed. Rule zero should have been the solution here in my opinion, casual and competitive players alike do not need to be coddled. Ultimately this ban feels like it wasn't for the good of the community but is an extension of the RC playgroup ban list, because members got their feelings hurt when someone was ending the game.

July 13, 2021 7:36 p.m.

shadow63 says... #29

Ojallday the problem is it doesn't end the game. It creates a really boring board state for everyone until someone top decks a kill spell

July 13, 2021 8:14 p.m.

Ojallday says... #30

shadow63 that sounds like a deck construction issue on the part of the hullbreacher player you were against. With 21 additional mana and a fresh hand most players will be able to close out the game shortly.

July 13, 2021 8:50 p.m.

RambIe says... #31

personal assumption
i have never witnessed anyone complain or freak out about decks designed to run Hullbreacher even when they combo it into a win. However, i have witnessed people freak out and complain about anyone running blue just dropping a Hullbreacher in response to a wheel, effectively shutting down the ever so popular Nekusar, the Mindrazer decks. i would assume those complaints have a large impact on the ban decision.

July 14, 2021 9:50 a.m.

jaymc1130 says... #32

And now it's just Oppo Agent that's waiting for it's turn. Lol.

Called it folks. Absolutely called it.

Good riddance to both in due time. Neither is healthy for EDH as a format.

July 14, 2021 10:18 a.m. Edited.

plakjekaas says... #33

jaymc1130 I'm not sure I agree with that one. The insane amount of cheap and efficient tutors in existence are at least as unhealthy for EDH as a singleton format. It doesn't matter what you can tutor, I'm pumping out consistent early wins with equipment. Pulling 20 basics from your library also is a surefire way to win the game in more casual games. We need more hate on search effects, not less of it. Although no future search hate cards should be as powerful as Opposition Agent , agree with that.

July 14, 2021 10:43 a.m.

jaymc1130 says... #34

I don't disagree that more tutor hate would be a good thing for the format.

What is TERRIBLE or the format is a tutor theft card that wins games on the spot. That's not a tutor hate card. It's a combo win condition that uses opponent's cards to do the winning. It's function and very existence dictates the way every deck in the format must play, the same way that Hullbreacher has.

Did you know that since these two cards were printed (in data that I've collected at least) decks that contain both won almost 50% more games than those same archetypes and shells had been winning prior to their printing? These two cards are so astonishingly dominant at consistently winning games that the entire format has been completely warped around them for 6 months now. It's actually insane. These two cards have been much more dominant (given the statistical data) than cards like Flash or Paradox Engine which were both banned for power level reasons (though for Paradox Engine this was a secondary concern rather than the primary).

Tutor hate I'm down for. Give me more Ashioks and Aven Mindcensors. What is not okay is a combo win card capable of winning games on the spot that every single deck in the format MUST play into by the very nature of the format being 100 card singleton and the necessity of tutors for decks to consistently function. The second thing is not tutor hate, its outright combo win that preys on the limitations of the format itself.

July 14, 2021 11:01 a.m.

RambIe says... #35

I don't feel that tutors are overpowered enough to need hate. Even the best tutors are atleast 1 turn behind synergy. Best case scenario is a 1 cmc tutor, but they tutor to the top of the deck. So you have to wait till someone's end step to use it to combo next turn, or use another card to draw it requiring a two card combo and atleast 2 more mana to combo, Or you can cast it at upkeep and naturally draw it but then your adding 1 cmc to the total cost of your combo that still puts you 1 turn behind. Not to mention your just announcing to the the table that your about to be a problem
Nothing can outperform a synergy deck that's utilizing card vantage

July 14, 2021 11:29 a.m.

jaymc1130 says... #36

"Nothing can outperform a synergy deck that's utilizing card vantage"

Hullbreacher absolutely demolishes this type of...




July 14, 2021 11:32 a.m.

shadow63 says... #37

Demonic Tutor is 2 mana y po u can easily use it and cast the card you grab with it that turn.

July 14, 2021 11:35 a.m.

TriusMalarky says... #38

I don't think tutors are unhealthy at all -- rather, I think it's individual tutors that are too powerful for more casual play. 1 or 2 mana tutors are a bit too fast if you're just jamming some fun deck with your friends, for example.

But I don't think Opp Agent is all that bad. Of course, I haven't had many games recently so it could be pretty powerful, but something has to be extremely lopsidedly powerful to warrant a ban in Commander.

July 14, 2021 11:42 a.m.

jaymc1130 says... #39

As powerful as, say, a two card game winning combo lock that prevents opponents from ever doing anything meaningful by preventing them from ever acquiring the resources to combat the situation while each card independently is useful on it's own while also comboing with a plethora of other cards outside of the two card combo in a multitude of ways that also wins games?

Such as Hullbreacher + Opposition Agent ?

Something this lopsided?

I agree.

Half the problem is now gone. The other half still needs to go.

July 14, 2021 11:47 a.m.

TriusMalarky says... #40

Hullbreacher was 90% of that, Agent is the icing on the cake.

July 14, 2021 12:45 p.m.

jaymc1130 says... #41

Technically, Hullbreacher was 50% of that.


July 14, 2021 12:46 p.m.

As it stands, there is no equivalent to the HBer/Wheel synergy that makes use of Agent. It is a very oppressive card, but I've played through them both before and Agent simply pales in Breacher's light.

July 14, 2021 12:50 p.m.

jaymc1130 says... #43

I think since there are so many effective ways to draw more cards that HB definitely feels like the card that had more consistent game winning impact since it's more consistently disruptive. But a big consideration here is that the Oppo Agent tended to trump the Breacher in a lot of games. I can't tell you how many times I saw some one go "On end step, flash in Breacher. Resolves? Cool. Also in end step, Mystical Tutor for the win since I'll find a wheel? Oh... you're going to Oppo Agent... um, nevermind. I guess I just lose the game now and if the Oppo player has any half of any combo in hand that our decks share so does everyone else."

July 14, 2021 12:55 p.m.

griffstick says... #44

Theres like 50 wheels in the game of magic. If you have a bunch in the deck its likely you've got it in your hand allready.

July 14, 2021 1:14 p.m.

jaymc1130 says... #45

Ironically the deck based on this strategy (Opus Thief/Wheel Thief) was an archetype that saw a significant reduction in win rate post Hullbreacher printing.

Yes, the deck was running a gazillion wheels and often had one in hand to go with the Breacher. But the first tutor target for opposing players was always their own Hullbreacher. Hullbreacher actually kind of roughed up the archetype because it was so dependent on wheels and Hullbreacher being a check on the power of Hullbreacher was just silly nonsense.

July 14, 2021 1:21 p.m.

RambIe says... #46

I have to agree that op agent is way more broken then hull. Personally I take full advantage of agent by including force search cards in my build. Scheming Symmetry & Field of Ruin for example. You can trust me when I claim I have done much worse combos with agent then breacher could ever dream of.

July 14, 2021 1:42 p.m.

jaymc1130 it wasn't banned because of how it did in cEDH, or even high mid. It was banned because it was oppressive in more casual circles, where there are fewer tutors for Agent to fuck with anyway.

July 14, 2021 1:43 p.m.

plakjekaas says... #48

Yeah if everyone tries to win the same way, Opposition Agent gets better. That's why its mere existence invites you to be creative, should shake up the meta, and punishes players for just copying what's good and popular. Punishes people for optimizing their greedy 4/5-color mana bases with all 10 fetches. If you don't run Thoracle Consultation, they can't find your pieces for themselves to use. Your sultai deck can take my Sword of Feast and Famine when my Open the Armory gets Oppo Agented. Good luck with it, I'll smash your face with a Colossus Hammer anyway.

I'm optimistic in my views of thàt being Oppo's intended purpose, shaking up the format and breeding creativity to deal with that card's existence. Instead, we mostly got complaints from players with uniform top-tier lists that got punished for playing what everyone else is playing. Those are the exact players the card is meant to punish, I have a hard time feeling sorry for them '^^

As mentioned, Hullbreacher 's utility is a lot less reliant on your opponent's deck to abuse with silly results, and therefor a lot more pressing as a problem. I do feel a bit sad that I never got to resolve one in real life after purchasing one, due to the practical difficulties of live play in quarantaine times, but I understand the ban.

July 14, 2021 1:50 p.m.

jaymc1130 says... #49

I didn't say it was banned for it's performance in a particular format.

I said it was banned for power level considerations. This is factually correct as a statement. Winter Orb is an oppressive card too, but no ban. Static Orb? Trinisphere? Armageddon? The oppressiveness of a card can be a consideration but there are so many oppressive cards that are not banned and no card has ever been banned just because it was "oppressive". Hullbreacher wasn't just oppressive, it was flat out busted oppressive, inexpensive, fit in legitimately every deck that included blue as a color as a must run (not an option for a slot, a literal must run) and dictated the manner in which multiple formats HAD to be played which limited player options and variety. Banning it was done purely from a power level stand point and this is clearly expressed in the reasoning in that article, it's explicitly stated by WotC that this was not a power level they were comfortable with.

July 14, 2021 1:50 p.m.

RambIe says... #50

shadow63 says...#37 Demonic Tutor is 2 mana you can easily use it and cast the card you grab with it that turn.
True but your 4 cmc combo now takes 6 cmc to cast effectively putting you atleast 1 turn behind naturally drawing the combo. So it still balances itself out

July 14, 2021 1:52 p.m.

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