Thursday, January 16, 2014

February 2014 OCG Banlist (Quick Analysis)

I don't usually cover too much OCG news, and I'm well aware that this list has absolutely nothing to do with us in the TCG currently. But as a piece of legislation enacted by Konami, I think that some critical analysis of this list is still useful to the community at large. Also, who knows if we won't be seeing some of these changes ourselves in the TCG at some point in the future? Anyways, here's a recap of the list to get us started.

Newly Banned: 1
Return from the Different Dimension

Newly Limited: 6
Atlantean Dragoons
Elemental HERO Bubbleman
Evilswarm Ophion
Gold Sarcophagus
Sacred Sword of Sever Stars

Newly Semi-Limited: 7
Blaster, Tidal, Tempest, and Redox
Plaguespreader Zombie
Lonefire Blossom

Newly Unlimited: 6
Debris Dragon
Gladiator Beast Bestiari
Gorz the Emissary of Darkness
Neo-Spacian Grand Mole
The Agent of Mystery - Earth
Thunder King Rai-Oh


Generally, this list is pretty terrible from my perspective. Why? Well, most of the time, if a card is on the banlist, it's for a reason. So de-limiting it is typically a bad thing in my eyes. There's a total of 20 changes of this list, and out of the 10 de-limits, I think 6 of them are probably bad ideas. Here's why:

Honest: This is fairly self-explanatory, especially considering the high number of Light decks in the game.

Lonefire Blossom: This is also self-explanatory for anyone who played through all of the formats where Plant Synchro decks were relevant, although it's not THAT bad.

Debris Dragon: This is mostly here because I don't think it's fair to have three one-card Black Roses at your disposal, but there's also concern to be drawn from the other Level 5, 6, or 7 Dragon-Type Synchros (especially the manga retraining of Black Rose Dragon that's coming to the OCG soon).

Gladiator Beast Bestiari: If you played back when Gladiators were broken, this is, yet again, self-explanatory. Nobody knows exactly how the deck would fare in the modern day meta, but personally I think Gyzarus spam is still a load of shit.

Gorz the Emissary of Darkness: Lol we shouldn't even have to discuss this. Attacking directly is how you win - to be punished THIS badly for trying to win is not a good idea, and would probably slow the game down a lot since people wouldn't want to attack directly as much anymore. I'm aware that there are stupid OTK decks out there, but there are easier ways to take care of them rather than just fucking with everybody.

Thunder King Rai-Oh: Not only is this card rather imposing in a format without Heavy Storm, but searching cards has long become an integral part of the way this game is played. I think it's okay to have a search-stopping card like Mistake exist to some extent, partly because Mistake can't turn around and punch you in the face with a 1900 ATK pair of fists. But Thunder King can, so I think he's fine being Limited.

That leaves us with four de-limits that I wasn't completely opposed to. Here's my opinion on them:

Plaguespreader Zombie is not nearly as broken as it used to be. Not only does it cost you a card from your hand, but it also ruins your next Draw Phase which can seriously set you back in this game.

I've realized that The Agent of Mystery - Earth isn't a bad choice at all. If you pay close attention to Agents, it won't take you long to realize how easily the deck can be kicked off-balance. It also has problems consistently getting to Hyperion and having enough Agents and Light Fairies to fuel him for long. Make no mistake, if there were better search choices for Earth to tap into, then she'd be an easy hit. But she really isn't right now.

Neo-Spacian Grand Mole is interesting. I think it's a little too powerful to have such an easy answer to nearly any Extra Deck card or any monster that takes resources to summon. I'm not saying that this absolutely ruins the game, only that it's not fun to invest in summoning good cards anymore when they can be bounced so easily. Not to mention this card can be reused every single turn. So on second thought, maybe this IS a solidly bad choice...

Finally, we have Cyber-Stein. I'm not completely decided on this choice: I'm aware that this card gets shit on by nearly any reactive effect negation and that this fear alone will deter most people from playing it, but there will be plenty of times when you don't have anything to stop him and I'm not sure that's acceptable. (Summon Cyber Twin Dragon and play Limiter Removal for game is an example.) But even with no negation, he's still a really big risk since it's so easy to take someone from 3000 to 0 in today's game, not to mention how easy it is for hand traps to shit on him. I'm really not sure if this will be fair, but it's more likely that it wouldn't harm the game as a whole too much. At the end of the day, Veiler is just hard to stop. What are you gonna do, main Mind Drain and Debunk? Still, good luck getting through multiple backrows. Oh wait, but you can use Trap Stun! ...Which also turns off your Mind Drain and Debunk. Anyways, you get what I mean.

This is just a quick look at a few of the changes on the OCG's banlist and why they might be bad ideas. Thanks for reading!

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