Announcement Date: September 8, 2021
Magic Online effective date: September 8, 2021
Modern Horizons 2 introduced many new high-impact cards to Pauper, and we've been watching the metagame absorb and adapt to those additions over the last several weeks. In that time, Storm and Affinity decks have risen to occupy a large share of the metagame. We've heard community feedback that metagame pressures from Storm and Affinity have pushed out a variety of other deck options that were previously viable.
In recent weeks, Storm combo decks had the highest non-mirror match win rate among top decks and earned by far the most 5–0 performances in Magic Online leagues. These decks use fast mana to power out a large
We considered banning
Affinity has been a slightly different case, in that from a pure win-rate perspective, the metagame seemed to adapt successfully, with the most popular Grixis Affinity variants settling in at just under 50% non-mirror match win rate. That said, while Affinity was being kept in check by a small number of top decks, its win rate against many of the less represented decks was high. To open the metagame to more diversity, we're choosing to ban
We're aware that some players have voiced other potential metagame concerns that could result from Storm and Affinity being weakened. But due to the unique nature of the Pauper card pool and the complexity of the metagame, we've chosen to start with these two changes and observe in practice if further changes are needed rather than try to predict and preempt cascading metagame changes.
These Pauper changes will be live later today on Magic Online.