September Banlist Wishlist

Greetings dueling world! As I write this article we are a mere 39 days away from the start of the September 2012 format, and boy could I not be more excited. Regardless of how much success I may have had this format, I am dying for it to end. I cannot remember a time in Yu-Gi-Oh that has remained so boring. The issue with the March 2012 format is that it was exactly what we all thought going into it. Regardless of how positive we wanted to make it seem, the dominant decks at the end of the September 2011 format just continued into March and remained throughout. Wind-Ups, Dino Rabbit and Inzektors all debuted as the top tier decks at YCS Atlanta and literally nothing has changed. Chaos Dragons were discovered as a top tier deck since, but they were technically out at YCS Atlanta. Anyway, as I count down the days until the new format, I thought it was a good idea to start writing about my opinions regarding the Limited and Forbidden List. Everyone can complain about a given format, or a time period in Yu-Gi-Oh, but if you are going to do that – you need to at least have some type of solution to the problem.

My opinion on a balanced, fair and fun format differ greatly from that of Konami and the ones in charge of actually putting the list together. Regardless of what we want to think, Konami is a business and therefore their main interest is making money at the end of the day. Their YCS attendance numbers have absolutely skyrocketed in recent memory – and have through the times of Substitoad/Mass Driver, triple Gateway of the Six and Rescue Rabbit/Tour Guide. So it isn’t like what they have done in the past is deterring enough of the player base to stop playing. So before I get into my opinion of the banlist, it needs to be made clear that my intentions with the list are nowhere close to those who have the power.  For further proof just look at what they did to the March 2012 list. Banning the best tuners available – Glow-Up Bulb/Spore, banning the best synchro available – Trishula, Dragon of the Ice Barrier and finally limiting two of the best archtype tuners available – T.G. Striker/The Agent of Mystery – Earth.  Yes, master Konami we will abandon our tuners and purchase your new products pushing XYZ monsters. Or even more proof may be that after the banning of Dark Strike Fighter and Crush Card Virus, every major deck at the time suffered some type of hit (Cat Synchro lost a Rescue Cat/Summoner Monk/Dark Strike Fighter, Blackwings lost a Gale, Gladiator Beasts lost a pair of Solemn Judgments) while Lightsworn escaped unharmed… just in time for Charge of the Light Brigade and Honest to be reprinted as promos in products ready to fly off the shelves.

I’ve decided to write two articles on this subject. The first of which is going to be my ideal Limited and Forbidden List, while the second will be a prediction list – where I try and put myself in the shoes of Konami and decide . Then we can laugh at how different they are.

Anyway, without further adeiu here is what I wish we will see come September 2012 – but of course, will not.

- Black Luster Solider – Envoy of the Beginning
- Exodia the Forbidden One
- Morphing Jar
- Sangan
- Wind-Up Hunter

- Brionac, Dragon of the Ice Barrier
- T.G. Hyper Librarian
- Leviair the Sea Dragon

- Card Destruction
- Final Countdown
- Future Fusion
- Gateway of the Six
- Limiter Removal
- Machine Duplication
- Mind Control
- Monster Reborn
- One for One
- Pot of Avarice
- Royal Tribute

- Ultimate Offerings

- Cardcar D
- Chaos Sorceror
- Deep Sea Diva
- Genex Undine
- Grapha, Dragon Lord of Dark World
- Herald of Perfection
- Inzektor Centipede
- Inzektor Dragonfly
- Judgment Dragon
- Jurrac Guaiba
- Lumina, Lightsworn Summoner
- Magician of Faith
- Red-Eyes Darkness Metal Dragon
- Rescue Rabbit
- Sinister Serpent
- Tour Guide from the Underworld
- Tragoedia

- Blade Armor Ninja
- Evolzar Dolkka
- Evolzar Laggia
- Hieratic Dragon King of Atum
- Wind-Up Carrier Zenmaity

- A Hero Lives
- Chain Strike
- Magical Stone Excavation
- Mystical Space Typhoon
- One Day of Peace
- Rekindling
- Shien’s Smoke Signal
- Six Samurai United
- Super Polymerization

- Call of the Haunted

- Reckless Greed

- Left Arm of the Forbidden One
- Left Leg of the Forbidden One
- Right Arm of the Forbidden One
- Right Leg of the Forbidden One
- Archlord Kristya
- Card Trooper
- Marshmallon
- Necro Gardna
- Spore
- Summoner Monk
- Tribe Infecting Virus

- Destiny Draw
- Primal Seed
- Scapegoat
- Swords of Revealing Light

- Magic Cylinder
- Mind Crush

Well, now that you are done laughing at how many changes I would like to make – I assume you are expecting some explanations right?


Black Luster Solider – Envoy of the Beginning

I’m not sure how many people are going to argue with me on this one. Black Luster Solider has been back for an entire year, and boy has it had an impact on the game. From existing as the backbreaking element of Plants, to transitioning to a piece of decks such as Inzektors and Dino-Rabbit, the Solider has seen his fair share of play and I do not think many will disagree with his departure. Not to mention how pivotal of a card it became in Chaos Dragons. Banning Black Luster Solider not only rids the game of an overpowered monster, it begins to reign in the power of Chaos Dragons – a success in my opinion.

Exodia the Forbidden One

Exodia has been playable a couple times in the history of Yu-Gi-Oh. One of which was when you were able to loop Dimension Fusion with Cyber Valley and Spell Economics to draw your entire deck in one turn. Seems fair. Another was when you could loop Butterfly Dagger – Elma with Gearfried and Royal Magical Library… again seems fair. In more recent memory, the Dragon Exodia deck has not seen much success overall, but the deck possesses the frustrating ability to draw one’s entire deck until they assemble all five pieces of the forbidden one. Solitaire decks that have little to no interaction with the opponent have no business in this game.

Morphing Jar

While the card has not seen competitive play in a while, I feel as though Morphing Jar has forever had poor card design. It was more apparent in older formats, but regardless of how much play it is seeing right now – cards that can generate unfair shifts in momentum such as Morphing Jar should not exist. You could feasible draw this card after your opponent magnificently wasted all your resources and suddenly reset all their hard work. Not to mention the degenerate Empty Jar decks that have seen success.


Oh Sangan. One of the only cards this game has seen to remain a virtual staple from the beginning of time. For the longest time I didn’t mind Sangan as a card, I always respected his existence and accepted what he did. The release of Tour Guide from the Underworld not only pushed Sangan over the top in my eyes, it exposed the dark side of the card. The ability to tuter almost any monster in your deck is more powerful than I have ever imagined. Perhaps the longer I have played, the more I learned how card interactions and such worked. But now that I go back and play older formats I begin to hate Sangan in a way I never did. It is weird to play something like Goat Control and fume whenever this card is summoned because back in the day, I honestly was not thinking that. Seeing Sangan search out whatever combo piece in Plants was needed, or Rescue Rabbit these past 8 or so months, my eyes have finally been opened. I think Sangan needs to go. Not only is it Tour Guide influencing this decision, it is how valuable a floating tuter truly is.

Wind-Up Hunter

If there was one thing about the past format that disgusted me more than anything it was playing without a hand. That just isn’t Yu-Gi-Oh. Sure, there may be those games your opponent blows you out with Rescue Rabbit or Future Fusion but you at least got to look at a hand of six cards and loss gracefully. The Wind-Up loop on the other hand makes the game of Yu-Gi-Oh an incredibly unpleasant environment. It is decks like this which will ultimately drive players away since there is nothing more frustrating than not having cards to play so you at least felt like you were playing a game.

Brionac, Dragon of the Ice Barrier

The dawn of the XYZs might be upon us, overshadowing cards like Brionac but ladies and gentleman– let’s not kid ourselves. In more balanced formats where this card is a legitimate risk, there are some serious issues about it being around. Brionac locking people, or simply ditching everything to push for game is one-sided and overpowered. Similar to his long lost brother Trishula, Brionac needs to find a place on the forbidden list.

T.G. Hyper Librarian

I feel like the only way I can bump cards like Spore up on the banlist is to just rid the game of Librarian. T.G. Hyper Librarian never did anything worthwhile of this game, it was always part of absurd combo decks and banning it is a completely legitimate precaution if this game is to see the reemergence of tuners.

Leviair the Sea Dragon

The first XYZ monster to find his way on the list. Good ole’ Leviair has defied the game of Yu-Gi-Oh since it was printed. First he pulled off out of this world combos in Plants and Agents, before transitioning into the first choice XYZ for Dino-Rabbit, in order to abuse Rescue Rabbit a second time. Leviair limits card design in the future, an aspect of this list I think is never really discussed enough. Cards such as Cyber Valley are virtually unplayable because of how potent Leviair’s effect is. Banning Leviair opens the gates so cards like that can re-enter the format, and at the same time eliminates the XYZ who has the most overwhelming impact on the game.

Card Destruction

If a card is limited to one and grants a certain archtype an overwhelming advantage if they draw it I think it should be banned. Card Destruction in Dark Worlds is just that – way too powerful and one-sided.

Final Countdown

This archtype was a joke the past format. Cardcar D may not have put it over the top like people expected, but it was certainly potent enough to warp side decks. This is another example of a deck that defies the principles of Yu-Gi-Oh, just instead of playing without a hand, you play without a battle phase. The forbidden list should take this into consideration and eliminate strategies that defy the principles of the game.

Future Fusion

Oh I bet there is no argument on this one. Similar to Card Destruction, if Chaos Dragons (or even Machines back in the day) happened to draw this card, their likelihood of winning skyrocketed. This card is too similar to Painful Choice, and is a super Foolish Burial. Those cards are either banned or limited to one… and this card is the super version of the card already deemed too strong to be played at more than one. Ban it.

Gateway of the Six

Read Card Destruction.  You’re playing Samurai? You drew Gateway? Must be a master.

Limiter Removal

It has been a long time since this card has ever seen play, but if Machines are to become popular at any point in the future – this is not the type of card that should stick around. The ability to pump out exorbitant amounts of damage onto the board with a single card is just not balanced, and it isn’t like banning this type of card would deter a viable Machine deck in the future.

Machine Duplication

My problem with Machine Duplication is that it limits cards design in the future for Konami. They are never going to be able to print a Machine with 500 or less attack with some type of exceedingly unfair return in multiples. Card Trooper tested those waters and it was not a fun experience. Sure Card Trooper may have broken the rules with the ability to boost his attack and allow Machine Duplication to not only produce card advantage but attack strength, it still places an unnecessary restriction on Konami for the future.

Mind Control

My main problem with Mind Control is that it punishes players for simply playing the game. Putting monsters on the field is a natural part of the game and before the release of XYZ monsters you could at least try and do things to play around Mind Control. Perhaps setting Sangan before Gravekeeper’s Spy in a Cat Synchro mirror match would diminish your opponent’s return from Mind Control. However, with the release of XYZ monsters, this card has become a virtual guaranteed removal spell that defies the simple principles of the game. How can you play around this card? Never put a monster on the field?

Monster Reborn

Monster Reborn returned off the list after a virtual life-time on just in time for Dark Armed Return format. Since then it has rotated on and off to the frustration of much of the player base. I’m not sure why Konami has felt like this is a type of card that should exist within the game. It has been consistently abused to knock extra cards in the Wind-Up loop, to explode with Lonefire Blossom into instant Trishulas. Yet for some odd reason Monster Reborn has survived banlist time again and again. I think it is safe to say I am not the only person praying that I can finally wish my copy away for good this time.

One for One

While One for One didn’t impact the most recent format, I bet I don’t have to go back too far to remind everyone of the plays the card enabled with Dandylion, or perhaps Frog FTK and Substitoad, or even XX-Saber Ragigura when you could play three copies. One for One is simply some of the worst card design I have ever seen in a card game because unlike the restrictions Machine Duplication places, Konami needs to sit down and literally analyze (or just skip) every level one monster they print. And not only that, when they do print ones that exceed a certain power level they have to act on it. Perhaps the best solution to that problem is to simply ban the main culprit behind those ludicrous strategies.

Pot of Avarice

In my honest opinion, Pot of Avarice is better than Pot of Greed. Crazy right? How is an unconditional “Draw two cards” worse than a situational one? I can tell you when… when the conditions Pot of Avarice sets are overly beneficial to the decks in which the card is played in. People don’t play Pot of Avarice because it draws two cards, though it may influence decisions when it is on the cutting block of certain decklists. People play Pot of Avarice because it enables your deck to recycle the absurd things it is trying to do. Gone through your Wind-Up loop? Need to go again? Draw Pot of Avarice. Out of Rabbit targets? Just draw Pot of Avarice. Need to reuse Reborn Tengu? Draw Pot of Avarice. In each of those situations, Pot of Greed is worse than Pot of Avarice.

Royal Tribute

One of the main reasons I want to ban Royal Tribute, beyond the fact that it falls in line with the “themed cards giving too much advantage” is that I feel like this list overall would enhance this type of deck. So as a precaution to other changes on the list, it is only fair that this silly card see the can. Though even without the further changes I am making, like moving Mystical Space Typhoon around on my list, this type of card should not stick around. There is nothing worse than not feeling like you are playing the game, and sometimes Royal Tribute does just that.

Ultimate Offering

Unfortunatly for Ultimate Offerings it falls under the same category as cards like Gateway of the Six. When Gadgets players are able to draw this card, their ability to spam endless rank 4 XYZs on the field is absolutely out of the control. After limting Mystical Space Typhoon, I think it is only fair to take a critical look at continuous spell and trap cards which can completely dominate a game. Ultimate Offering is just one of those cards, and limiting it does not necessarily limit how strong of a deck Gadgets would be under this banlist.


CardCar D

After playing in this format, it was clear that Cardcar D would become a virtual staple across the board. In a slow format, players can afford to use their normal summon in order to generate incremental card advantage. If this format is as slow paced as I hope; the free, incremental card advantage of Cardcar D would become a problem. Card advantage is an important aspect of slower formats, and it should take some effort to generate such advantage. Therefore, limiting Cardcar D to one is a simple precaution to make sure it doesn’t show up as three of’s in every deck of the format.

Chaos Sorceror

For those of you who just recently picked this game up, this guy was once outright banned. Konami then went through the process of easing his return back into the game with one copy, then two copies and even returned him back down to one after he was deemed too powerful. Yet for some reason Konami felt he deserved to run amuck in threes. For awhile he was seen as a potential tech card in Plant builds, so it wasn’t like the ability to run three was doing much damage to the game. But then the Chaos Dragons were printed and Chaos Sorceror turned into one of the absurd boss cards at that deck’s disposal. Limiting him to one and finally rebanning Black Luster Solider can adequately close the door on the second era of Chaos monsters. Chaos Dragon variants may stick around for the sheer strength of Lightpulsar Dragon, but they will have to do so without Future Fusion, Black Luster Solider and the two additional copies of Chaos Sorceror.

Deep Sea Diva

No one is playing Deep Sea Diva right now, but Abyss Rising is soon on the horizon and as a precaution I limited Deep Sea Diva. There are still insane combos you can pull off with the sole copy of Deep Sea Diva, but letting him stay at three for the entire format would make the second half of the following format as painful as the last. And honestly, I am not sure this is enough to combat that deck and would be entirely inclined to add more to the list as a precautionary measure against that archtype.

Genex Undine

After the release of the Atlantean structure deck this card may turn into the best normal summonable monster in the game. The ability to generate a plus 2/3 that is almost completely unfazed by Effect Veiler is laughable. Using Effect Veiler on Genex Undine will still let a player send their Atlantean monsters to the grave, and in turn begin destroying cards on the field. After talking to people who were familiar with the archtype, they immediately suggested that this card find its way down to one on the upcoming banlist and I could help but agree.

Grapha, Dragon Lord of Dark World

The banning of both Card Destruction and Morphing Jar, in conjunction with the semi-limitation on Reckless Greed proved to not be enough to strap down the power of the Dark World deck. Grapha still remained as an unfair boss monster that become unmatched by any other in the format. Unfortunately for Dark World lovers, limiting Mystical Space Typhoon to one forced me to take a closer look at continuous spell and traps cards which could dominate the format. The idea of playing against Dark World decks with three copies of Skill Drain and three copies of Gates of the Dark World, with only one Mystical Space Typhoon to combat it is alarming. After playing games under this banlist it became clear that Dark Worlds possessed  a speed and ability to rush the opponent that no other deck in this format can match it. Regardless of the inherent inconsistencies of Dark Worlds, it became clear that format would be much better with Grapha sitting on the sidelines.

Herald of Perfection

This card hasn’t been recognized as a top tier deck in quite some time, but when it was it was one of the most frustrating matchups in the games history. Your opponent could simply draw a collection of Happy Lovers, or explode onto the field with Herald, Kristya and Royal Decree. It just isn’t fun to play in a format when this card is a viable strategy because it again, as I will repeat throughout this article, defies a simply principle in the game of Yu-Gi-Oh. We suppose to be able to play our cards, not sit there locked down by Herald of Perfection.

Inzektor Centipede

I don’t necessarily have a problem with theme decks, my issue with Inzektors is that they defy the same principles in the game as Mind Control. Unless you draw a combination of cards which can stop Inzektors from popping cards on your field, such as Solemn Warning or Effect Veiler you literally cannot play the game. You simply cannot place a card on the board, and even if you don’t, Inzektors have the built it inability to still generate 8000 points of damage – and even play around Gorz doing so. A lot of people have compared Inzektors to Blackwings in the nature in which they could destroy virtually any card they needed through Inzektor Hornet and Icarus Attack. But the thing with Blackwings, which I know a chunk on the dueling community got very bored playing against, you could at least somewhat play around a card like Icarus. Setting one or setting chainables was a viable gameplan against that deck until they used a sole copy of Icarus attack, perhaps letting you loosen up and begin establishing board presence. Inzektors on the other hand just create this scenario where you are punished for the entire game if you set a card to the field. It is just poor card design and this type of archtype cannot stick around in the format I envision. I originally thought that limting Dragonfly to one would be enough to sufficiently cripple the archtype, but allowing Centipede to stick around proved to be to detrimental. In a slower paced format, this deck was still able to piece together the same unfair plays that make them a powerhouse.

Inzektor Dragonfly

Read Centipede.

Judgment Dragon

I have a deep hatred for the theory behind random mill. One round a Lightsworn opponent could completely whiff on every mill they conduct the whole round. You were able to dodge Wulf, Necro Gardna and even the Lightsworns needed to drop Judgment Dragon – congrats you have won. The next time you play against the deck though, your opponent is able to stick Lumina – Garoth and mill two Necro Gardnas, Wulf and earn themselves a few draws off Garoth. Completely arbitrary in each case, the outcome of the game is drastically altered by the random order of cards on top of the deck. So in relation to Judgment Dragon, I simply cannot see this type of card existing in multiples in any type of healthy format.

Jurrac Guaiba

After playing under this banlist, Jurrac Guaiba quickly became a dominating force that allowed players to quickly cheat Evolzar Laggia and Dolkka into play. Restricting Guaiba to one may seem like an unconventional choice, but under this banlist he would likely become a near staple across the board. Games in a slow paced format can be quickly warped when cards like Guaiba can allow players to drop monsters with self protection like Laggia. Therefore, as both a precaution and experience from playing under this banlist – we will move him down to one.

Lumina, Lightsworn Summoner

The restriction on Lumina coincides with the restriction on Judgment Dragon. Not much else to say but I desire to severely cripple the deck with random milling.

Magician of Faith

I’ve played with this card quite a bit recently. From cube drafting to Goat Control, and there is no denying how powerful of an effect she has. The thing is, after the banning of cards like Monster Reborn what is there that is so unfair to reuse? Perhaps Heavy Storm, but overall she is only as strong as what she can revive and from what I expect from this format as a whole – she wouldn’t have a warping effect.

Red-Eyes Darkness Metal Dragon

Chaos Dragons function perfectly fine with one copy of Red-Eyes Darkness Metal Dragon, but my real concern with this decision was combating future builds of Hieratic Dragons. The deck can successfully go off with one copy of Red-Eyes, however, the additional copies of Red-Eyes would allow them to outright OTK with the release of Superdreadnought Rail Cannon Gustav Max.

Rescue Rabbit

You know, I almost considered leaving this card at three and finding other ways to nerf Dino-Rabbit decks. Because I’m not quite sure how dangerous the E-Hero or Gladiator Beast version of Dino-Rabbit decks truly are. However, I decided to remain cautious and just limit Rescue Rabbit to avoid any problematic issues which can arise in the future if the card was left at three.

Sinister Serpent

The main reason Sinister Serpent has been banned for so long is the logic Konami has that it dodges the idea of cards having a cost. The problem is, that decision was made when people actually used Lightning Vortex and Graceful Charity was still unbanned. Outside of perhaps some type of OTK I am not aware of, what exactly would Sinister Serpent do right now? Its unbanning may even promote some type of Sinister Serpent abuse deck – which I am not necessarily against.

Tour Guide from the Underworld

At first I had this card at two on my banlist, but then I realized how insane this card still is being able to search out a copy of itself. Tour Guide simply toolboxes for way to many effects for it to be part of a healthy format. From the 3000 attack strength of Acid Golem to the removal effect of Zenmaines, Tour Guide has shown itself to be the most versatile card in the games history. The only cards that can even relate to Tour Guide were Magical Scientist and Rescue Cat… guess where they are right now.


Tragoedia hasn’t really been much of a problem but the card has such a powerful effect that I could see it becoming a problem in this format. It was once restricted to one, so there is certainly precedent for that type of change on the banlist. I wouldn’t mind this card becoming a pseudo-staple in under this list, but I am totally against it over powering everything in the format.

Blade Armor Ninja

I don’t mind Blade Armor Ninja because it is a legitimate investment of two cards. The problem is the ability to drop two copies of Blade Armor Ninja means you are generating over 8000 damage in attack strength. Hero and Samurai decks deserve to have this card as an option, but they most certainly do not deserve to have this card as an OTK option.

Evolzar Dolkka

I was afraid that the actual Evoltile deck might spring up above the rest under this banlist, so as a precaution I limited both of their boss monsters. I’m not entirely sure this damages that deck enough anyway, but I think it would help neuter some of the unbalanced aspects of the deck. My main issue with boss monsters that have negation effects is that they can often times make you feel like you are not even playing a game. Being unplayable to resolve any of your cards is a terrible, terrible feeling and multiple copies of these guys around may promote unhealthy decks which can summon them.

Evolzar Laggia

Read Dolkka.

Hieratic Dragon King of Atum

Even though I restricted Red-Eyes, it doesn’t mean this deck was hit enough. From my experience of playing against this deck, it is an all out aggro deck that tries to cheat quick wins. Unlike something like Wind-Ups, I haven’t seen this deck transition into some form of control, instead it has been all OTK, all the time. Therefore as an effect to slow the format down, I think it is necessary to make sure this card is not the lynchpin OTK card in the Hieratic deck.

Wind-Up Carrier Zenmaity

Even with Wind-Up Hunter gone, there is no question in my mind that this card should be limited to one. If you open with Wind-Up Magician and Wind-Up Shark you can loop four cards out of the opponent’s hand… or just put more than 8000 damage on the board! Even without Wind-Up Hunter in the mix, Wind-Ups have incredibly unfair components that I don’t believe should exist.

A Hero Lives

Even today Elemental Hero variants that use A Hero Lives are respectable in comparison with the other decks around. The ability to plop Stratos on the board and trigger the effect to get a slew of Blade Armor Ninjas into play is quite alarming. Builds of Bubble Beat with triple A Hero Lives proved to be too fast in comparison with the other decks under this banlist. Therefore, as a necessary precaution the card was limited to one.

Chain Strike

I respect that Chain Burn decks can require some form of skill, but overall I’ve always been disgusted when this deck was deemed playable. It forces players to include slots in their side deck which could be filled with more relevant cards across the board. Chain Strike was limited to one once, and the deck still succeeded on the SJC circuit. So it isn’t like limiting it back down to one will completely kill the deck off. It is just absurd to think that a single card should be able to generate as much damage as this card does, and as consistently as this card does.

Magical Stone Excavation

On the off chance that some type of unfair OTK exists under this format, which abuses spell cards, I decided to limit Magical Stone. I’m fairly certain there are none that are consistent enough to warrant attention, but just in case we can put Stone back to one.

Mystical Space Typhoon

You know, I could probably write an entire article on why Mystical Space Typhoon should be limited back down to one… and perhaps I will? I think anyone who plays this game right now knows the whole “Do I set one and lose to Typhoon or set two and lose to Heavy” question. So how about we return Mystical Space Typhoon back down to one. I know it makes silly cards like Gozen Match and Rivalry of Warlords more viable, but cards like Dust Tornado do exist in the side deck. People could start maining triple Night Beam and just recreate the same problem under this banlist, but it isn’t like they are doing that to push through turn one Rescue Rabbits anyway. So let them run a chunk of spell and trap card removal, they need to find something pretty impressive to be doing.

One Day of Peace

The only type of decks One Day of Peace is good in are the types of degenerate strategies that have no business in the game. From Empty Jar to Final Countdown to Chain Burn, this card was the perfect inclusion in each of them. While I sufficiently hammered away at those decks, I think it is only fair to limit this card to one to monitor any future strategies from having three copies of this comically powerful card.


With the release of the Lavals right around the corner I decided to limit this card to one, just in case that strategy ends up having a warping effect on the format. I could easily move this card to being banned, but the deck could easily flop and this type of limitation could be enough. I am afraid that letting this card stick around in triplet may open the door to a fair too overpowered archtype down the line.

Shien’s Smoke Signal

Konami actually acknowledged it was unpleasant for the opponent to summon Shi En on the first turn in one of their articles about the banlist. The concept behind Samurais is just not something that should be part of the game. Huge beatsticks like Barkion, Beast and Shi En that are walking negation is just not fun to play again. Limiting this card to one will make sure the deck remains on the fringe for the future.

Six Samurai United

The problem with Six Samurai United is that the card is completely mindless. There is virtually no variation to the way in which the card can be played. I hate cards that spoon feed themselves to players, and this one is certainly one of them.

Super Polymerization

With the release of the Dark Elemental Hero in the near future, I am afraid it may be time to start picking away at Elemental Hero support. Part of me wanted to ban Elemental Hero Stratos, but I was curious to see how the format would shape with it being part of both Elemental Hero and Destiny Hero variants. The problem with Super Polymerization is that once the Dark Hero is released, you become punished for putting literally any monster on the field when the opponent has an Elemental Hero. Now that is just bonkers.

Call of the Haunted

Can you believe that Call of the Haunted was once banned? Well, since then it has slow gone up on the banlist to the profound number of three. For a short time, Inzektor decklists where sporting any number of Call of the Haunted, ranging from one to three, in order to abuse the creatures such as Sangan, Card Trooper and, of course, reuse Inzektor monsters. In a format as slow as this one, the ability to use multiple Call of the Haunteds and generate field presence this fast may become detrimental. Call of the Haunted was limited to one for the longest time, and was at one when this game went through its phases as a more slowpaced and skill intensive one. Plus, the only reason I felt like this card went to three last format was so that players would be more able to put monsters of their choice on the field in order to conduct XYZ summons… a decision is that far from based on a healthy metagame.

Reckless Greed

Oh you drew three Reckless Greed? Must be nice. Even drawing two is quite insane. I know you hate when your opponent is able to draw all three of these, I doubt there is much resistance from the dueling community in putting this back down to two.


Archlord Kristya

Agents really are not much of a factor right now. Perhaps some type of Valhalla deck could be playable under this banlist? I’m not quite sure, so I think it is safe to put Kristya back to three. I even put Herald of Perfection down to one as a precaution.

Card Trooper

With Machine Duplication banned I don’t really see much of a problem putting this card up to three. I know I said I had an issue with the randomization behind milling, but decks that play Card Trooper do not usually play a high amount of unfair targets – like Wulf or Necro Gardna. So putting it to three seems like a completely safe thing to do now that I banned Machine Duplication.


Is there seriously going to be a burn strategy this format? I don’t really think so, so what is the point of having this card at two? Isn’t Spirit Reaper much better anyway?

Necro Gardna

Now that Lightsworns were finally put to rest, we can see this completely fine card back up to three again.


I never really had an issue with synchro monsters. Perhaps Konami did, but I think that was more centered on the idea of pushing the sales of their XYZ products. Kevin Tewart made a point that he found issue with tuners that had the ability to be reused. The thing with Spore is that unlike Glow-Up Bulb, it is incredibly deck specific. Plants needs to be a viable archtype in order for this card to work, and with Dandylion, Lonefire and Debris Dragon all at one – you may find that difficult.

Summoner Monk

Sure this card makes XYZ monsters, and can even search Stratos, but I don’t see the point in having it at two. Two Summoner Monks literally does nothing, so I see no issue in moving it up to two.

Tribe Infecting Virus

This card really isn’t very good. It has been banned for a long, long time. And even if they unbanned it today I’m not sure I would play a single copy in any deck I am playing. What is this good against? Could it be good in the future? Perhaps, I did unban Sinister Serpent. But those type of incremental card advantage plays are fine in this format. Not to mention that the card has lost some playable now that priority is gone. At the most I could see Tribe Infecting Virus as a side deck card against certain matchups, but this card does not ”cripple the existence of theme decks.” The only problem that can arise from this card being legal are the interactions with the new Atlantean monsters around the corner. Hopefully the limitations on Undine and Diva can keep this in check, but I am totally willing to refine either those cards - or this again. And it is a shame I would have to do that.

Destiny Draw

This card has been a powerhouse in a myriad of formats, so there may be some opposition to moving it back to three. But if there is one thing about the Destiny Hero engine that has always been true, it is that when this engine is playable, the best players are going to win more often. From the time of Dark Armed Return to TeleDAD, the best players knew how to eek out every drop of card advantage from the Destiny Hero engine, and I can see that happening again in this format.  A deck like Plasma control is completely viable with three Destiny Draw and three Scapegoat.

Primal Seed

Yeah, no comment here.


So we can synchro with Scapegoat tokens, that has been relevant during a couple formats, but it wasn’t like that happening was overly unfair. Move this bad boy back up to three, perhaps we can enter into a nice, slow format where the best players in the game can stall out unfavorable board positions and eventually overtake control. That is what happened during what people consider the best format of all time – Goat Control.

Swords of Revealing Light

Two Swords did nothing. Three Swords will do… nothing.

Magic Cylinder

Two Magic Cylinder did nothing. Three Cylinders will do… nothing.

Mind Crush

With Trap Dustshoot banned, and a decent amount hate towards Dark World on the overall banlist, I can see Mind Crush going back up to three. It has always been a reasonable side board choice, so why not give us the option down the line if some deck pops up that we can shut down with triple Mind Crush.

So before you savage the comment section below, it is important to at least let me explain a general sentiment I have about my banlist and the game. In recent memory, this game has experienced an increase in game speed that is unprecedented. We use to get upset that our opponent opened Lumina into Garoth, or with Delinquent Duo. Now we live in this fear that our opponent could open Future Fusion, Card Destruction, Gateway of the Six, Rescue Rabbit, the Hieratic loop or the Wind-Up loop. Some say that slaughtering all of these is simply comical, or too much of a change. But why is that? What is wrong with being able to sit down across the table from someone and know what almost regardless of how you draw – there is something you can do to combat their plays? Old formats like Goat Control have become popular on Dueling Network and in person, because players have begun to yearn for that type of environment. There may have been a tremendous amount of power cards that generate immense swings in tempo, but we still herald those six months as the best in the games history. The reason for that was almost regardless of the quality of draws each player had, there was something a better play could do to influence the outcome of the game. Plays were not as black and white as follow up Rescue Rabbit with Tour Guide, or try and successfully summon your Inzektor for the turn. Each card had such a specific and centric effect on your game play, that an incorrect sequence of plays could allow a witty opponent to capitalize and take control of the game. These type of slow paced, grind game formats have forever favored the best players in the game, and the results of SJCs during that time period show that.

The problem I have heard with revamping the game to try and recreate an environment that drastically favors the best players in the game, is that the weaker players will become frustrated and quit. That type of thinking promotes this overall idea that we are destined to remain at the same level of play. It should be the competitive nature within us that drive us to improve at this game, and formats like this will only further allow players on the whole to improve their game. Formats similar to the one we just played in may have allowed anyone to sit down and beat the best players in the world – decks like Wind-Ups and such suppose to let the Average Joe beat Billy Brake and the likes. But formats like that are months of wasted time in the development of us as players. A major revamp of the format, like was the goal of my banlist, is suppose to cripple the strategies that are handicapping the ability of the Yu-Gi-Oh community to start thinking outside of the box, learn critical thinking skills and begin to play Yu-Gi-Oh… on the next level.

Joe Giorlando

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