BANNED AND RESTRICTED LISTS
One key to the continued health of Magic is diversity. It is vitally important to ensure that there are multiple competitive decks for the tournament player to choose from. Why? If there were only a single viable deck to play, tournaments would quickly stagnate as players were forced to either play that deck or a deck built specifically to beat it. In addition, different players enjoy playing different types of decks. If there are plenty of viable options to play, there will be more players at more tournaments.
To help maintain the diversity and health of the Magic tournament environment, a system of banned and restricted lists has been developed. These lists are made up of cards that are either not allowed at all, or allowed only in a very limited manner.
It's important to note a couple of things: First, these lists apply only to Constructed formats and not Limited formats. Second, the banned and restricted lists are format-specific, so a card that is banned in Modern may still be legal to play in Standard.
If a card appears on the banned list for your chosen format, then you may not include that card in your deck or sideboard. Doing so makes your deck illegal to play in any sanctioned tournaments for that format.
Cards are usually banned from play if they enable a deck or play style that heavily skews the play environment. What does that mean? If the card were legal, a competitive player either must be playing it, or must be specifically targeting it with his or her own strategies.
Some cards are banned because they have proven to simply be too powerful in their respective format. While hundreds of hours are spent rigorously playtesting sets before their release, the complexity of Magic makes it nearly impossible to accurately predict all the ways the new cards interact with older ones.
If you wish to use a card that’s on the restricted list for your chosen format, you may include only a single copy of that card, counting both your main deck and your sideboard. Currently, only the Vintage format uses a restricted list.
This format lets you dive deeper into Magic's history, allowing cards from Eighth edition to today.
The following cards are banned:
Vintage Banned and Restricted Cards
While Modern lets you play cards from as far back as 2003, Vintage lets you play cards from any set in the 20+ year history of Magic!
The following cards are banned from Vintage play:
- 25 cards with the Card Type “Conspiracy.” Click here for list.
- 9 cards that reference "playing for ante." Click here for list.
- Chaos Orb
- Falling Star
The following cards are restricted, which means you can only have one of them in your main deck and sideboard combined:
Legacy Banned Cards
The following cards are banned in legacy tournaments:
The following cards are banned from the format:
Block play requires a Constructed deck, which must contain a minimum of sixty cards. All cards in your deck must be from a single block of Magic releases.
The following cards are banned in block-constructed tournaments:
- Intangible Virtue (Innistrad-Avacyn Restored block)
- Lingering Souls (Innistrad-Avacyn Restored block)
- AEther Vial (Mirrodin block)
- Ancient Den (Mirrodin block)
- Arcbound Ravager (Mirrodin block)
- Darksteel Citadel (Mirrodin block)
- Disciple of the Vault (Mirrodin block)
- Great Furnace (Mirrodin block)
- Seat of the Synod (Mirrodin block)
- Tree of Tales (Mirrodin block)
- Vault of Whispers (Mirrodin block)
- Skullclamp (Mirrodin block)
- Lin Sivvi, Defiant Hero (Masques block)
- Rishadan Port (Masques block)
- Gaea's Cradle (Urza block)
- Memory Jar (Urza block)
- Serra's Sanctum (Urza block)
- Time Spiral (Urza block)
- Tolarian Academy (Urza block)
- Voltaic Key (Urza block)
- Windfall (Urza block)
- Cursed Scroll (Tempest block)
- Squandered Resources (Mirage block)
- Amulet of Quoz (Ice Age Block)
- Thawing Glaciers (Ice Age block)
- Zuran Orb (Ice Age block)
Pauper Banned Cards
Revised: October 21, 2019
The following cards are banned in this format:
Magic Online-Specific Banned and Restricted Cards
Magic Online formats have their own Banned and Restricted lists. Those lists are maintained on the format pages themselves. Use the links below to view any of those pages.
MAGIC ONLINE COMMANDER
Build a 100-card singleton deck around a Commander, typically a single legendary creature.
All sets and cards are allowed in this 40-card minimum format.
Decks must have exactly 60 basic lands and one “Momir Vig” Vanguard card.
Limited to gold-bordered cards, available in Magic Online Planeswalker deck packs.