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MTG bans 5 cards in Dec. 4 Banned and Restricted announcement

Formats are changing.

Wizards of the Coast officially banned a total of five cards and unbanned one during the Dec. 4 Magic: The Gathering Banned and Restricted announcement.

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The final MTG Banned and Restricted announcement of 2023 dropped today, banning Fury, Up the Beanstalk, Karn, the Great Creator, and Geological Appraiser. 

Players were made aware of the upcoming MTG bans through a preannouncement on Nov. 28, along with the possibility of cards getting unbanned in the Pioneer and Modern formats. The only unbanned card from the Dec. 4 Banned and Restricted announcement was Smuggler’s Copter in the Pioneer format. Karn, the Great Creator, and Geological Appraiser were the two banned cards for the Pioneer format. And in the Modern format, Fury and Up the Beanstalk were banned. Additional MTG bans include Monastery Swiftspear getting banned in the digital Explorer format, along with Karn, the Great Creator, and Geological Appraiser.

Fury was on the MTG Modern ban list hot seat heading into the last Banned and Restricted of 2023, along with cards like The One Ring and Orcish Bowmasters. WotC banned Fury to “impact both the play rate and win rate of Rakdos Evolve,” potentially giving the Modern meta room to grow while possibly reducing the number of Orcish Bowmasters players in the format. 

Pioneer MTG bans removed Karn, the Great Creator, a staple within the format, along with Geological Appraiser, a new Magic card from Lost Caverns of Ixalan. Quintorius Kand is still on the Pioneer ban hot seat for now, and Smuggler’s Copter, which was banned in 2022, has been unbanned following many changes to the Pioneer meta over the last year. 

With WotC continuing to create a Pioneer format through the Explorer format on MTG Arena, both Karn, the Great Creator and Geological Appraiser were banned as well. Smuggler’s Copter was not an available card on MTG Arena, so it temporarily remains an unplayable card within the Explorer format. 

All tabletop bans from the MTG Banned and Restricted announcement will go into effect on Dec. 4. The MTG Arena Explorer bans will drop on Dec. 5.


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Danny Forster
Lead Magic: The Gathering/Teamfight Tactics scribe and staff writer for Dot Esports. Danny is a gamer beach bum residing in Spacecoast Florida and has been a journalist for 10 years, of which five-plus have been at Dot Esports. Prior media outllets Danny wrote for were Screen Rant and TheGamer. You can typically catch Danny playing TCGs and a variety of strategic games.