Earlier this morning Wizards announced that the Aether Revolt Banned and Restricted List update would be going live this afternoon. As this was a week earlier than the announced date the Magic world was abuzz with what could possible be changing. A popular theory was that the interaction between Felidar Guardian and Saheeli Rai, mimicking Splinter-Twin combo - would get the preemptive axe. While these cards were not banned the change to the list will ensure Standard will look very different at Pro Tour Aether Revolt.
Effective January 20th (and January 11th on Magic Online), Emrakul, the Promised end, Reflector Mage, and Smuggler's Copter will be banned in Standard; Gitaxian Probe and Golgari Grave-Troll will be banned in Modern.
The Standard bans were made with power level and diversity in mind. Emrakul proved too strong for Standard while Reflector Mage pushed White-Blue Flash too far up the power curve. Smuggler's Copter was everywhere and was "too efficient".
The next Banned and Restricted list update will be on March 13, 2017. This is a change from the previously followed schedule of updating the list the Monday after a Prerelease. The date, five weeks after the next Pro Tour, will allow Wizards to evaluate format health more often and make changes as needed. Importantly, Wizards does not believe that this will increase the number of cards added to the Banned and Restricted list.
More information can be found in the official announcement here. Do you think this was the right call? Did Wizards ban the right cards or were they too indiscriminate with their ban hammer? How do you feel about the midseason ban list update?
Check out the Announcement from Wizards for more info!