November 11, 2019 Pioneer Banned Announcement

Posted in News on November 11, 2019

By Ian Duke

Ian Duke is a developer in Magic R&D and has been with Wizards of the Coast since 2012. A gift of an Ice Age starter deck in 1995 sparked Ian's lifelong passion for Magic. He also enjoys math, physics, board games, and puzzles. To the surprise of few, his favorite guild is Azorius.

Announcement Date: November 11, 2019

Pioneer:

Veil of Summer is banned.

Tabletop Effective Date: November 12, 2019

Magic Online Effective Date: November 12, 2019

The list of all Pioneer banned cards is here.

Next Pioneer B&R Announcement: November 18, 2019


Observing the evolution of the Pioneer format after last week's bans, we're generally seeing positive changes to the metagame. However, green-based aggro and ramp decks still remain overrepresented in the competitive metagame at the expense of midrange and control. Therefore, we are banning Veil of Summer to better allow for natural metagame forces to provide counterpressure against these strategies. We expect this to increase incentive to play reactive strategies that will help keep the format in balance over the long term without fundamentally changing any of the diversity of decks currently available in Pioneer.

We'll follow up with further changes if needed next Monday, November 18, but please note that the Pioneer update will take place that afternoon, separate from the regularly scheduled B&R update for all other formats.

We also want to highlight that we'll be aligning the tabletop and Magic Online effective dates going forward. In the past, we've held effective dates for tabletop games to prevent disruption of already-planned tournaments. However, with the fast iteration for Pioneer, it makes more sense to align the dates to allow players to adapt and test quickly.

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