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By: AJ_Impy, AJ Richardson
Sep 27 2011 2:02am
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PTQ Schedule for Honolulu '12 posted  All the events will be Innistrad Sealed

The August Banned and Restricted Announcement


Cards on the move thanks to Innistrad:

Ratchet Bomb - 2
Molten-tail Masticore - 3
Elspeth Tirel - 10
Grave Titan - 5.75-6.75
Sun Titan - 4.25-4.50

And going down with bannings:

Blazing Shoal - 1.25
Stoneforge Mystic - 2
Splinter Twin - 4.5
Vesuva - 9
Green Sun’s Zenith - 2.25
Mental Misstep - 0.90
Jace, the Mind Sculptor - 32.75

Whatcha been playin’:

AJ: Human dragons, 1-2 record, needs work.
Seb: M12 Sealed!
Keya: Innistrad Prerelease out in the real world. 7-1 in two flights.:D
Here’s the 4-0 card pool and deck:
INS Prerelease #2
0 cards

Other Spells
1 Abbey Griffin
1 Avacynian Priest
1 Feeling of Dread
1 Moment of Heroism
1 Mikaeus, the Lunarch
1 Nevermore
1 Smite the Monstrous
1 Spare from Evil
1 Thraben Purebloods
1 Unruly Mob
1 Village Bell-ringer
1 Voiceless Spirit
1 Armored Skaab
1 Battleground Geist
1 Claustrophobia
1 Curiosity
1 Dream Twist
1 Fortress Crab
1 Frightful Delusion
2 Grasp of Phantoms
1 Hysterical Blindness
1 Lantern Spirit
1 Ludevic's Test Subject
1 Makeshift Mauler
2 Moon Heron
1 Selhoff Occultist
1 Sensory Deprivation
2 Sticher's Apprentice
1 Curse of Death's Hold
2 Dead Weight
1 Disciple of Griselbrand
2 Ghoulcaller's Chant
1 Gruesome Deformity
1 Stromkirk Patrol
1 Unburial Rites
2 Victim of Night
3 Walking Corpse
1 Ashmouth Hound
1 Bloodcrazed Neonate
1 Brimstone Volley
1 Curse of the Nightly Hunt
2 Furor of the Bitten
1 Heretic's Punishment
1 Into the Maw of Hell
2 Night Revelers
1 Scourge of Geier Reach
1 Skirsdag Cultist
1 Tormented Pariah
2 Vampiric Fury
2 Village Ironsmith
1 Ambush Viper
1 Avacyn's Pilgrim
1 Caravan Vigil
1 Grave Bramble
1 Grizzled Outcasts
1 Ranger's Guile
2 Somberwald Spider
1 Spider Spawning
1 Spidery Grasp
1 Travel Preparations
1 Ulvenwald Mystics
1 Wreath of Geists
2 Blazing Torch
1 Butcher's Cleaver
1 Graveyard Shovel
1 Mask of Avacyn
2 Inquisitor's Flail
1 Stensia Bloodhall
1 Woodland Cemetery
75 cards
0 cards
Blazing Torch


4-0 Sealed Pool
0 cards

Other Spells
1 Abbey Griffin
1 Avacynian Priest
1 Mikaeus, the Lunarch
1 Unruly Mob
1 Voiceless Spirit
1 Armored Skaab
1 Battleground Geist
1 Claustrophobia
2 Grasp of Phantoms
1 Lantern Spirit
1 Ludevic's Test Subject
1 Makeshift Mauler
2 Moon Heron
1 Selhoff Occultist
2 Sticher's Apprentice
1 Unburial Rites
2 Blazing Torch
1 Butcher's Cleaver
1 Inquisitor's Flail
23 cards
2 Swamp
7 Plains
8 Island
17 cards
Blazing Torch


prafit's picture

the reason to ban green sun's zenith? Elf Decks. Watching elves get a second turn infinite mana, and infinite draw was more than enough reason to ban green sun's zenith. I know it woun't completely kill elves, but it will hurt elves a little.

I think it's Zoo by Bauchelain at Tue, 09/27/2011 - 04:44
Bauchelain's picture

Erm actually I think the reason was a t1 dryad arbor, elves really isn't a competitive deck in modern. It also nerfs zoo a little bit (not nearly enough IMO). I think the bans came much too late however, as Modern is already suffering badly. A shame because it had a lot of promise.

I think wizards went about the ban list the wrong way. Yes outrageous decks like blazing shoal, hypergen and stoneforge needed to be stopped but banning cards like Jace, Ancestral Visions and Ponder/Preordain which are not overpowered at all in this format has put people off playing it already. It's become a case of 4 x goyf + 4 x Knight of Reliquary or you won't win anything.

@Bauch I'm actually really by char49d at Tue, 09/27/2011 - 06:06
char49d's picture


I'm actually really upset Stoneforge Mystic was banned in Modern, as she is the only Goyf you can get at a reasonable cost. In Legacy you are punished for every splash by wasteland, but in Modern it doesn't matter as long as you are willing to pay life, and most decks running Goyf are beating down early anyway. Every successful "control" deck that did well pre-ban was running 4 Goyfs and a bunch of disruption, and I don't see that changing.

I question whether or not control is even possible when the format has all of legacy's best creatures, none of the best counters and aether vial is legal. They obviously have no grasp on the format considering they made affinity excellent while banning the only cards from it other decks cared about, instead of the actual best card cranial plating. Now instead of needing creature removal to beat it, you need artifact removal or you are basically dead to any topdeck, and between Blinkmoth and Inkmoth sweepers alone just won't cut it.

Without Force, without Jace, there just aren't any reasons to play blue control - just gifts and that is easily splashed. Are you seriously supposed to play Cryptic Command to beat decks with Goyf, Nacatl and KoTR? What about Mana Leak vs. Merfolk, or Affinity? They even killed all the decks cheap counters were GOOD against. The format is just a complete wreck.

I generally agree with you, and by apaulogy at Wed, 09/28/2011 - 11:08
apaulogy's picture

I have done quite a bit of post-ban testing and I can assure you that control is *viable*. Tier 1? Maybe not. But I have been pretty successful with a grixis cruel ultimatum deck that has the Burnwillow + Punishing Fire Engine (which got a lot better) and also a Ub Teachings deck that is actually resembling more of an aggro control deck thank anything, but I run Cryptics and Vendilion Cliques in both and nary a Goyf. Mana Leak is still a go to, but Rune Snag is perfectly acceptable, as well as Spell Snare and Spell Pierce (card is good in this format).

Merfolk can't beat Zoo. Merfolk is the only deck that runs Vial (beside the Death and Taxes deck). Merfolk is better in a field of combo, just like in legacy. Both decks lose to a resolved Wrath-effect.

The format is going to be fine after these bans. I still think that it is hyperbolic. I think Vision and Jace could come off at the very least, possibly more.

one million words's picture

Good podacast, as usual, but I don't agree with your assessment of GS Zenith. The big problem was the turn one ramp with Dryad Arbor. Pretty much every green deck ran GSZ and Arbor. Not every green deck ran Goyfs. The Cloudpost decks didn't.

The other reason was that while Cloudpost decks were insane, the Urzatron decks were not that much slower, not when they could use GSZ.

The big problem, however, was the reusable tutor. That proved broken when it was called Survival of the Fittest, and while GSZ is not Survival, it is not Worldly Tutor, either.

@Pete I agree with your by gamemaster32 at Tue, 09/27/2011 - 10:32
gamemaster32's picture


I agree with your disagreement :D

I was basing my argument on Erik Lauer's explanation of the banning. I think I read too much into the final comment he made about wanting to create diversity among green decks in the format. After rereading his commentary, I see that they are banning it bc it is too powerful and that they hope a side effect is to generate deck diversity.

I agree with banning it from a power level perspective, I just thought they were saying they were banning it for another reason that I wouldn't agree with.

Thanks for listening!

It isn't really a reusable by char49d at Tue, 09/27/2011 - 08:12
char49d's picture

It isn't really a reusable tutor like Survival - you can't pay 5 and search up multiple Goyfs or anything. It is actually similar to Demonic Tutor, in that it creates redundancy at the cost of mana, albeit one instead of two, and it is limited to green creatures.

Still, that allows decks to run 5-8 copies of any green creature at basically no cost since it can be played at any point in your curve.

I think they wanted to hurt zoo, but didn't want to ban Goyf, so that was their only option. You can't really ban anything else in that deck.

I believe Pete meant that it by Paul Leicht at Tue, 09/27/2011 - 08:32
Paul Leicht's picture

I believe Pete meant that it comes back albeit randomly and while that isn't quite survival's function it is closer to that than demonic tutor which puts a card in hand. Actually Id compare GSZ to cards like Tooth and Nail, Wild Pair, and Defense of the Heart but it is much faster and not a one-shot.

I agree completely with your assessment about GSZ being banned to hurt Zoo without crippling it. Goyf banned would make the field much harder for aggro players.

I meant the functionality of by char49d at Tue, 09/27/2011 - 09:46
char49d's picture

I meant the functionality of it was a tutor that added consistency without card disadvantage at the cost of mana, to me that's a demonic tutor. It isn't adding value, it just finds the card you need at slightly above cost, similar to demonic tutor, which costs more but also is less restrictive.

Survival is an entire engine, there is almost nothing to compare it to in all honesty.

The shuffling back aspect of the zenith cycle was designed either as flavor or to prevent flashback or some other abuse I can't think of, it is not particularly relevant in constructed since with 60 cards you aren't greatly changing your odds of hitting it multiple times except in very long games.

If Zenith put the creature in by Paul Leicht at Tue, 09/27/2011 - 12:04
Paul Leicht's picture

If Zenith put the creature in hand Id be more inclined to see it your way on the tutor analogy. Putting things directly onto the battlefield from hand/grave or library falls into another category imho. As far as the shuffling back goes, it is a cycle that does that so I guess vaguely in the flavor department but the re-usability is important particularly if you are good at manipulating your deck.

If it wasn't relevant in constructed people would have been running Chord of Calling over GSZ even at a higher cost because the convoke discount and instant speed and lack of color requirement, make it superior in every other way.

"You sir are no broccoli!" by Paul Leicht at Tue, 09/27/2011 - 08:44
Paul Leicht's picture

"You sir are no broccoli!" Yep that was a lol moment and worth at least 5 fireballs!

Great Show again by apaulogy at Tue, 09/27/2011 - 15:19
apaulogy's picture

This show makes 1/2 hour go by fast. I think there is nice overlap between you guys. That is one reason I like this cast.

nice subtle political commentary (If only I had $400K a year...).

Seb- MTGO user name?

Keya- that is just a filthy sealed pool...here is hoping I open something similar!!!

haha. I guess it has been a by runeliger at Tue, 09/27/2011 - 19:23
runeliger's picture

haha. I guess it has been a while since I've posted.

It's runeliger!

I'm also @runeliger on twitter hahha

actually just discovered by apaulogy at Wed, 09/28/2011 - 11:12
apaulogy's picture

That Ligers are real animals. They are a product of human-intervened crossbreeding. They have a Lion male mate with a female Tiger. The product is something that is ~40% bigger than a full grown male lion that can only run half the distance before getting worn out. They apparently can't survive in the wild and are bred for their skills in Magic.

Maybe this is a small discovery, but I am not a zoologist.

Urban Myths... by Bauchelain at Thu, 09/29/2011 - 05:05
Bauchelain's picture

I thought the Liger was an urban myth and doesn't actually exist???

Wizards knows that the next Modern pro tour will be dominated by Zoo, banning GSZ won't change that. they wouldn't dare ban Goyf because it's the format all star and people would just rage quit anyway. Something needs to go or this format will just dwindle and die like new extended, Knight maybe? Its the combination of KoR and Goyf that makes zoo so strong, one or the other and most decks can handle the threat but both is too much. I play a lot of Merfolk (or did preban with all the combo and post decks that were usually a straight 2-0) and I can deal with goyf with path and threads but its the knight that comes out late game that just eats my face.

My suggestion to the list at present would be to take off Jace & Visions and put on Knight of the Reliquary.

O no, I thought that too by apaulogy at Thu, 09/29/2011 - 11:15
apaulogy's picture

Ligers do exist

Banning creatures that do degenerate things is one thing (IE Goblin Lackey, Goblin Recruiter, Lin-Sivvi in Masques Block). Eternal formats tend to have a ton of removal and ways to deal with creatures at its disposal.

Knight is certainly a powerful creature, but I don't think he warrants a ban. He is slightly harder to kill than Goyf because he can grab a Sejiri Steppe for protection, but that is a narrow circumstance and usually only happens once. Otherwise he dies to pretty much any "destroy target creature" removal spell. I do not think Zoo needs to be neutered any further. GSZ ban did actually hurt the deck. It doesn't take much to hate Zoo out of a metagame.

I can get behind taking Jace and Vision off.

Actually, I hope they leave Jace on long enough for him to drop to ~25 tix online, then they can take him off :)