So I guess Konami wants you to buy Phantom Rage. Hello Pojo Readers, Crunch$G here and we got a new Forbidden and Limited List. I saw this coming as soon as the database updated with the Makyura errata, so I’m kinda not shocked we got the list at this moment, and it was clear this was going to try and help sell Phantom Rage some more. They actually tried to hit the problem cards though while keeping them with enough to still stick around for physical play to return. It’s still more cleanup than actual hits, but the hits were still necessary for the most part and they’re enough. Let’s see what Konami decided to do on this list now.

Block Dragon

From Unlimited to Forbidden

I mean, this is a card on paper that looks insanely busted, it was just waiting for the right Rock Deck to make use of it. When that came around with Adamancipator, I feel Block Dragon was just on a clock waiting for it to get the ban it looked like it deserved. An easy summoning condition of banishing 3 EARTHs to summon from hand or grave that’s not hard once per turn, meaning you can keep bringing it back after using it as Link Fodder, on top of giving your Rocks protection and letting you search for up to 3 Rock Monsters when it leaves the field is just insanely good. It’s almost like another Redox for Rock Decks considering most of them were EARTH based anyways. Block Dragon just gave Adamancipator a higher ceiling that wasn’t fair and made the Deck super strong in this already combo-centric meta. This hit won’t kill Adamancipator, but it keeps them in check for when physical play returns proper.

Jet Synchron

From Unlimited to Forbidden

Now time to get to the Halqifibrax hits to dance around the problem while they still try to sell Duel Overload for physical play to return. Jet Synchron was one of the best Tuners to summon off of Halqifibrax after Glow-Up Bulb and Steam the Cloak were both banned since it can revive itself off a simple discard, and this one isn’t a Once per Duel effect, so you could use multiples even though the Jet banished itself. It was an easy 1-card Halqifibrax with the existence of Linkuriboh to Link-off and later revive the Jet Synchron, which just began some insane combos. They don’t want to hit Halqifibrax yet, which is understandable considering it hasn’t been seen in physical events, so this is just a temporary measure until they likely ban Halqifibrax and release all the Tuners that got hit for its power.

Mecha Phantom Beast O-Lion

From Unlimited to Forbidden

Another Halqifibrax hit, but this one was also somewhat caused by Mecha Phantom Beast Auroradon. O-Lion made so many different Decks able to create the end board of a True King of All Calamities or a field of Borreload Savage Dragon and Herald of the Arc Light with the existence of Auroradon and Halqifibrax that something had to be do about it. O-Lion is basically a replacement for Steam the Cloak as well for summoning a Token after it’s sent to the grave. It does hurt Mecha Phantom Beast a little considering O-Lion gave that archetype another summon, but soon enough I’m sure we’ll see O-Lion come back to the game so it’ll enjoy a temporary stay for now.

Double Iris Magician

From Forbidden to Limited

Pendulums really needed something after they lost both Electrumite and Servant of Endymion a few months ago, so a single Double Iris Magician will have to do for now. This card was easily able to come back after the Electrumite ban and probably a little before it considering the meta was speeding up past what Pendulums could do. Double Iris makes playing the Pendulumgraphs in Pendulum Magician more viable once again, which is a nice benefit considering how good they are just unreliable by not being searchable unless you played Duelist Alliance still. Double Iris did not need a ban anymore considering Pendulum is already struggling, so it’s nice for Konami to throw the Pendulum mechanic a bone here.

The Phantom Knights of Rusty Bardiche

From Forbidden to Limited

We all saw this coming from a mile away with Phantom Rage coming soon to give us new Phantom Knight cards and with the OCG not having Bardice on their list at all, it was safe to assume it was in the realm of possibility that Rusty Bardiche could return with Orcust or DARK Warrior not running around as rampant anymore. Rusty Bardiche offers so much value to the Phantom Knight engine and strategy that it’s a staple for anything using the PKs in general. It helps set up plays and/or give you disruption on the opponent’s turn and generates some crazy plusses with Phantom Knights. Rusty at 1 is fine, though I don’t know if it would of made the biggest difference whether it was at 1 or 3 considering most only play 1 anyways, so I guess it didn’t matter what number they brought it back to.

Called by the Grave

From Unlimited to Limited

The last actual hit on this list, Called by the Grave going back on the F/L List only this time to limited status is baffling, but I guess I can understand it. Triple Tactics Talent just came out and is a great alternative to Called by the Grave, so I guess they want that to sell Rise of the Duelist more. We are also still waiting on Crossout Designator to do what Called by the Grave also does, and that’ll be a big selling point to whatever set it is in. The hit to Called by the Grave does suggest they really want to sell Triple Tactics Talent more and the fact that Crossout Designator could be on the horizon for the TCG, but this really hurts combo strategies more by making it harder to counter and play around hand traps.

Harpie’s Feather Duster

From Forbidden to Limited

This one seemed like a long time coming considering how long the OCG had this in their format while the TCG kept it banned ever since the early days of the Forbidden section of the list. We have so much backrow removal that a single copy of Feather Duster being added couldn’t hurt things more, plus it’s great to have the most generic piece of backrow removal back without a real cost or requirement to activate. I guess Konami decided that Lightning Storm reprints would sell with or without Feather Duster in the format, and it’d make for a good reprint to have considering they’re already reprinting so many cards so they needed to add one more to the pool so they can have more good reprints to sell other sets. Now to hope this comes in the new Gold Rare in Maximum Gold or it’s in Genesis Impact and gets a Collector’s Rare slot.

Cir, Malebranche of the Burning Abyss

From Limited to Semi-Limited

I guess if you want to sell Phantom Knights more, you should also help boost an archetype that complimented Phantom Knights well, and considering Konami likely doesn’t want to boost Orcust right now, the next best choice was Burning Abyss. Cir back to 2 makes BA have a bit of a better recovery game by making the Cir-Dante loop more consistent let you not need to worry about having only 1 copy of your best revival piece in the archetype. Cir coming off the list was safe as suggested by the OCG already having Burning Abyss at full power minus maybe Terrortop still being limited over there as well. Burning Abyss is still great, but it’s time to have more copies of their best monsters now.

Graff, Malebranche of the Burning Abyss

From Limited to Semi-Limited

If Cir wasn’t enough for BA users, Graff also came back to 2 to help boost the consistency of the Deck. Again, the OCG suggested we should be fine with full power BA, so having a second Graff to summon more BAs from the Deck won’t be the end of the world that brings BA to Tier 0 status. We still lack Beatrice being Unlimited, but its Limitation doesn’t affect BA as much as Cir and Graff being on the list affected them. Graff being back means BA can summon from the Deck more to get to their Rank 3s or Cherubini more often, which is a great thing to finally have access to more in the archetype. BA got a great boost as a pure strategy, and it’ll be greater when it becomes PK Fire once again.

ABC – Dragon Buster

From Limited to Semi-Limited

This was a preemptive hit entering Master Rule 5 and it wasn’t necessary to begin with because ABC wasn’t going to be the biggest threat in a meta with Adamancipator and Eldlich being options. Dragon Buster should still be at 3 to this day, but it’s nice for Konami in the TCG to realize that ABC isn’t the big threat they believe it to be, so they’re going to reverse their mistake and give us back Dragon Buster. I can easily see this coming back to 3, where it properly belongs, but now ABC aren’t as fragile and once again have multiple Dragon Busters to use. Union Driver and Union Carrier also weren’t going to be the pieces that broke ABC either, there’s better uses for Union Carrier anyways and Union Driver just does what Union Hangar does without the restriction of not being able to summon your newly equipped Union.

Toadally Awesome

From Limited to Semi-Limited

Another reversal from when we entered Master Rule 5, but I’ll give Konami the benefit of the doubt here and say I can understand why this card was hit. Paleofrogs being able to spam out multiple Toadally Awesome as well as WATER strategies being able to easily summon Bahamut Shark and go into Toadally Awesome again sounded scary. Now a few months later we can see that wasn’t as big of a threat to the meta as Konami might of expected, so it is now warranted to begin bringing back Toadally Awesome to the game. I get the reasoning why they did it with it having strong negation and the ability to continue doing its thing by recycling itself, but it wasn’t the threat they expected, so it’s welcome back to 2 and eventually 3.

Makyura the Destructor

From Forbidden to Unlimited

This might be one that strikes fear into older players, but the errata the card received made it far from the threat it once was. It doesn’t have an official print with said errata yet, but it’s coming in Rage of Ra and it’s already in the database, meaning it’s official. The errata makes you only able to use 1 Trap from hand, you have to send Makyura from field to the graveyard to be able to use said Trap from hand, and it’s a hard once per turn. Far from the ability to just Foolish Burial it to the grave and spam all your Traps out of your hand to pull of degenerate combos. It’s a fairly harsh errata that maybe could of been lighter to make sure Makyura still saw play without being degenerate, but I guess they just wanted to be extra safe here considering how good it is to have an option to use Traps from hand.

Tour Guide from the Underworld

From Semi-Limited to Unlimited

There’s few instances where the difference between being at 2 and 3 matters in Yu-Gi-Oh and one of those cards where it didn’t matter was Tour Guide. It’s an insanely powerful card to be able to summon any Level 3 Fiend from Deck, which BA loved to have access to, but we’re at a point where 2 Tour Guide wasn’t broken, so I doubt 3 Tour Guide is going to be what breaks BA into the meta alongside the PK boosts and the return of Graff and Cir to 2. We’re once again closer to full power BA, and I welcome the prospect as it can be a nice little rogue strategy that could maybe even go to Tier 2 once Phantom Rage is released. Nice to see a classic card back in the game at full force.

Evigishki Gustkraken

From Limited to Unlimited

Now this looks like another scary prospect considering how much players don’t like handloops existing in the format, a la Infernoble Knights using Smoke Grenade right now. With that said, I doubt the Gishki handloop is consistent enough to warrant Gustkraken being limited anymore, plus it’s more fragile compared to Infernoble Knights still being able to build a board at least. This is nice to have considering the OCG also brought this back to 3 recently as well and we didn’t have Gustkraken at full power for long over here in the TCG to begin with after its initial release. It’s fine at 3 now, though Mind Augus could probably still stay at 1 for its more insane loops.

Pantheism of the Monarchs

From Limited to Unlimited

Another long time coming case with the OCG showing us that full power Monarchs are not as scary as they once were. Pantheism to 3 was much needed for Monarchs considering how bricky they can be at times. They already had all their other pieces back, but Pantheism still stayed at 1 for some reason. Domain-locking isn’t as scary in a format where Union Carrier can equip a Dragon Buster Destruction Sword from Deck to accomplish the same thing in Decks using DARK and/or Dragon monsters. Pantheism to 3 is nice for Monarchs, but won’t be a tipping point for them. Now time to get those old Monarch Structure Decks once again.


Sky Striker Mecha – Widow Anchor

From Semi-Limited to Unlimited

The last return to the format is Widow Anchor going from 2 to 3. Sky Strikers needed all the boosts they could get after the banning of Engage earlier in this year, and even though Sky Striker has proven to be a nice rogue strategy that could top every once in a while, Widow Anchor being at 2 or 3 won’t be the big difference for Sky Striker on the tiering ranks at this stage. They need a lot more to boost their rankings in the meta like the return of Engage to the format or having Multirole and/or Hornet Drones going to higher numbers, and that’s something we are not ready for right now. Widow Anchor is a good consolation prize for Sky Strikers right now until we reach a meta where we can boost them more by releasing more cards.

In Conclusion

Overall, Konami did a good job changing the format up in the instance physical play returns without doing too much to hit Decks that haven’t seen proper play in physical events yet. They brought back some good options to shift the meta some, with the best new option now being PK Fire post Phantom Rage now. I would of liked Smoke Grenade gone to make sure Infernobles can’t handloop. I’m sure people wanted Mystic Mine gone, but Konami just rarity bumped it in the tins and they need help with value in the set right now beyond Dragoon. They didn’t hit Dragoon at this point indirectly, as they shouldn’t to sell tins. Harpie’s Feather Duster is my favorite part of the list as I’ll be glad to use it once again. Overall a nice list to help bring back old strategies and not hit the new ones too hard so they can actually see play at a YCS.

Thanks for Reading,