Magic: The Gathering - Top 10 Banned Fastest
From Tibalt's Trickery and Memory Jar to Lutri, The Spellchaser, and more, discover the fastest banned Magic in gaming history.
To preserve the integrity of tournament play, the 10 fastest banned cards in Magic were removed in less than two months. Together with Duelists Convocation International, the governing body that sanctioned the tournament game, Wizards of the Coast began announcing banned cards from official tournaments. The reason cards are banned comes down to how powerful they are and their advantage over other opponents.
However, as a different format has emerged, Magic: The Gathering cards may also be banned due to how unfairly they interact with older cards from previous formats such as Vintage and Standard, which came out in 1995. Whatever the reason or reason for a card being banned, in modern formats like Commander and Booster Draft, some get banned in lightning-fast time and cause serious unrest for those who own them. Mind's Desire was infamously banned from both Legacy and Select formats in less than a week, but unfortunately, the card isn't alone.
10 Underworld Breach - 45 Days
The powerful combo card Underworld Breach was banned from the old format in March 2020 (via Magic Wizards) after 45 days in circulation. it's easy to see why Beautiful Magic: The Gathering card was banned because it often violated Wizards of the Coast guidelines regarding combo decks and their function in the metagame.
For example, Underworld Breach costs only 2 mana, splashes easily, and requires no resistance or expertise to enhance its synergistic Brain Freeze and Lion's Eye Diamonds companions. This card is also immune to Flusterstorm counters and affects the entire turn, leaving tournament players with few options to counter. As a result, Underworld Breach was deemed too unfair and too easily abused, and was swiftly banned in less than two months.
9 Winota, Joiner Of Forces - 31 Days
Venota, Joiner of Forces played for 31 days before being banned from the Pioneer format in June 2022 (via Magic Wizards). Pioneer is a format that seems to build on the tradition of the standard format (arguably the best MtG format for beginners), prioritizing variety over all other game elements. Winota, Joiner of Forces stifles expected diversity by being too powerful to use any other strategy.
For just 2 mana, midrange decks are very resilient and able to support many of the powerful mana creatures in Vanguard, making Naya Wintoa's obvious advantage is her combined power. Her strong card drawing also greatly reduces the competition on the battlefield, which is part of the reason the card was banned after about a month. This card is also shared far too often in the meta game, and is often so dominant in matches that it is considered unsuitable for tournament play.
8 Drannith Magistrate - 31 Days
Drannith Magistrate was also in rotation for 31 days before one of the best digital card games in the Brawl format was banned in May 2020 (via Out Of Cards). The card joined three other banned cards on the same day, though Drannith's reasons were slightly different. High brass feel that Drannith greatly reduces the effectiveness of other Commanders and goes against the spirit of the Commander deck.
According to Wizards of the Coast (from Hipsters of the Coast), the reason for the Drannith Magistrate ban was that, in the Brawl format, "It shouldn't be that easy to completely shut down a class of Commanders with a single card." Like Sorcerous Spyglass Like Medding Mage, Drannith prevents commanders from being controlled by the official command zone, which leads to serious inequality issues and takes away the fun of building a Brawler The deck in the game.
7 Zirda, The Dawnwaker - 31 Days
Zirda, The Dawnwaker, a powerful MtG card, was also banned after 31 days in May 2020, although it was for Legacy format (via Comic Book). Unlike the Drannith Magistrate, whom Zirda considered too oppressive, Danwaker was banned due to the combined powers of her artifact partner, the Grim Monolith.
Zirda, The Dawnwaker was banned mainly due to the infinite mana loop when combining the card with the Grim Monolith Companion. This gives players who find quasi-glitches in Magic Online a huge advantage by activating the Grim Monolith's companion abilities, which don't reset during the reset phase. This provides infinite mana to the combo, which is just too unfair for a serious game.
6 Lurrus Of The Dream Den - 31 Days
The last card banned in May 2020 after 31 days, Lurrus of the Dream Den was removed from Legacy and Select formats (via Magic Wizards). Popular Magic character cards are also banned from Modern and Herald in 2022. Vintage prides itself on using large card pools and powerful limited decks. However, the noted force in Win rate for players using Larrus of the Dream Den as a partner.
Likewise, Larrus of the Dream Den was banned from the Legacy format, as players kept pairing already strong characters like Grixis Delver with companions and easily beat the game. As a result, Wizards of the Coast noticed a huge increase in win rates in Magic Online, with players winning 55% more often (via Magic Wizards) in Legacy and Vintage when using Larrus of the Dream Den as a companion.
5 Omnath, Locus Of Creation - 17 Days
Omnath, Locus of Creation was banned from the strategy trading card game in October 2020 after only 17 days in Brawl and Standard formats (via Magic Wizards). Since the card was overused to its advantage in popular decks in the metagame Four Color Adventure and Four Color Ramp, tournament outcomes were too skewed to continue in Standard.
Omnath, Locus of Creation's ability involves drawing a card each time it enters the battlefield. Whenever a land enters the arena under his control, he gains 4 life. This dynamic begins to warp the metagame when tournament players start making heavy use of standard-format four-color adventures. As a result, there are 23 Omnath decked out of a possible 32 decks (from Magic Wizards) during the Grand Finale; the overwhelming evidence shows that the deck was indeed in his favor. As for Brawl, this card was removed because it was played and won more often than any other best MtG Commander deck.
4 Memory Jar: - 14 Days
After 14 days of play, Memory Jars was banned from Urza's Block in 1999, and has since been banned from several other formats (via MtG Rocks). Memory Jar forces players to exile all cards, redraw seven new cards and discard their hand at the start of the next round. Players hate this card because it ruins the game and makes winning easier for those who used to win.
According to Magic Untapped, this led the DCI to arrange an emergency ban on Memory Jar, the first and only ban of its kind to date. But the emergency ban stems from more than just Memory Jar's unfair balance of power. The card was banned for game-breaking due to DCI concerns over "Combo Winter," where for four months players were fleeing the game en masse due to the belief that the broken card was ruining the experience. Just as the fix was being made, the memory jars came out and sparked more concerns about unfair play.
3 Tibalt's Trickery Modern - 10 Days
Tibalt's Trickery is banned for 10 days in Modern format in 2021 (via Magic Wizards). For such a quick dismissal, one might expect this card to result in a staggering amount of equity. However, anti-target spell cards suffer from Cascade's problems and greatly reduce the fun of the metagame.
By countering its own 0-mana spells, this card allows the controller to draw powerful cards early. In Cascade, the MtG card with Disruption Art was abused, casting a 0-mana spell, then bombarding the board with giant creatures on turn two. Despite its low winrate, this card defeats the purpose of the metagame, which is supposed to be fun, entertaining, and more competitive.
2 Mind's Desire - 6 Days
Mind's Desire was a storm card that was banned after only 6 days in Legacy and Vintage formats. The 6-cost combo card allows a player to shuffle their deck, exile the top card, and use it on the next turn at no mana cost. The ultra-powerful combos created with cards are just too powerful to promote a level playing field.
in old Formats such as Legacy and Vintage, it is easy to get high storm counts. Using free spells combined with Storm and support cards like Tendrils of Pain and Windfall (part of the best MtG 30th Anniversary promos) makes it all too easy to dominate the game. DCI restricted Mind's Eye the day it was released in 2003 (via MTG Fandom) and officially banned the card less than a week later.
1 Lutri, The Spellchaser - 0 Days
The fastest banned Magic card in history was Lutri, The Spellchaser, which was removed from Brawl and Commander tournaments before the official 2020 street beat date. Five minutes after the card debuted in a Twitch stream, Commander Rules Committee member Sheldon Menery announced that the card would be banned (via Star City Games).
The main reason the card was banned was that it offered zero opportunity cost and became a must-play option, both of which the format was trying to eliminate. According to Menery's official statement, the MtG card is so powerful that it should be banned because players don't have to "sacrifice 100 slots to use it," which means any Magic player can use As long as they are playing the correct color at the time.