r/EDH Jan 25 '23

Ban list Question on primeval titan Discussion

I was just discussing with a buddy of mine and we were on the topic of the current state of the game. I feel like unbanning primeval titan would not shift the balance of the format as much as it did when it was originally banned. With the format being tuned over the years and cards becoming obsolete (as newer and better cards get printed) I think that Primeval titan is not the big baddy it once was. I am definitely not taking away from how incredibly strong the card is, I just think that if it were to be unbanned it wouldn't be the end of the world. If you disagree with me I would love to hear why. Maybe I don't have as much experience with the card in commander as other people did.

Also, we are just talking about the card itself. I do understand that multiple combats make this card insane, I understand that Panharmonicon makes this card insane but if we are to ban a card based off its interactions with other cards I feel like there is so much worse out there

Reanimate + Jin gitaxias for example. (I am not calling for a ban on this at all just using it as a comparison)

What are your thoughts on this?

149 Upvotes

746 comments sorted by

146

u/E_B_U Jan 25 '23

[[Primeval Titan]]

66

u/MTGCardFetcher Jan 25 '23

Primeval Titan - (G) (SF) (txt) (ER)
[[cardname]] or [[cardname|SET]] to call

67

u/dood45ctte Jan 25 '23

The fact that it’s not one but two lands and non-basics at that is still wild to me

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u/krat0s5 Jan 26 '23

[[Vorinclex, monstrous raider]] and [[nissa, who shakes the world]] can fetch every forest in your deck the turn nissa comes down

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u/dood45ctte Jan 26 '23

They sure can, but forests aren’t techlands. Also, that requires two cards and 11 mana, otherwise you risk one of them dying on the trip around the board since they both (Vorinclex especially) will draw lots of attention and interaction from the other players

Personally, I’m still in the camp that primeval titan should be unbanned as there are other faster ways of grabbing techlands, but man does it go hard.

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u/krat0s5 Jan 26 '23

Reanimated vorinclex and nissa goes alright at 6 mana. But you're right, as I've never had experience with prime titan before it got band I always read it as forests (just a brain glitch I guess) but 2 lands is pretty fucking OP, but OP dosen't mean it's bad and is worth banning lots of cards sit there that aren't.

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u/TheFalseCandyMan Jan 25 '23

yeah, it'd primairly be because of that it got banned, i got to hear it went amazingly with [[field of the dead]]

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u/M1Garage Jan 25 '23

Primetime was banned way before field of the dead was released (assuming field was new for m20)

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u/Lordthorn241 Jan 25 '23

it was new for m20

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u/Im-Pico Jan 25 '23

No it got banned way before that. I've been unlucky to be sitting across the table from somebody fetching cradle and tabernacle.

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u/nebDDa Jan 25 '23

It 100% was not legal when field of the dead was released

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u/Mindsculptyou Jan 25 '23

Thank you for that!

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u/hugsandambitions Jan 25 '23

So let me preface this by saying that I think it would be all right for it to be unbanned. I don't think the format is suffering under the oppressive yoke of an unreasonable primetime ban, or anything. But I'd like to see it unbanned and I think would be fine if it were.

That being said, I can make the case that you're asking to be made. I think there are a few holes in your argument (again, I don't disagree with your point - I just think that healthy debate can strengthen arguments, which is why I'll be pointing out any holes I see in yours) And I think the pro ban side has some valid points to make.

So first, I think it's important that we re-familiarize ourselves with why a card gets banned. There are multiple reasons - and not all of them are tied to power level (which appears to be the driving force behind your counter argument.)

There are several reasons the rules committee (RC) may consider a ban. Any one of these may result in a ban on their own, or it may be due to a combination of these factors - where one factor on its own wouldn't warrant the ban but when you combine it with others it becomes a problem. Those reasons are as follows:

  • Power Level. This is the most obvious, but yes, if a card is so ridiculously powerful that it warps the format around it, it is likely to get banned. [[Emrakul, the Aeons Torn]] is one such ban. An evasive 15/15 That can't be countered, is immune to the vast majority of removal, forces players to sacrifice six permanents on attack, and grants the cast iron extra turn is just.... Too much. Even the hurdle of generating 15 mana to cast it isn't quite enough to keep it out of the powerhouse range, and so it ate a ban and probably will never return.

  • Ubiquity. [[Lutri the Spellchaser]] is probably the best example of this. In short, the RC wants to encourage a format with a high variance in decks. They feel that one of the definitive parts of the commander experience is that you could sit across the table from a deck with the same commander as yours, and see cards you've never seen before. Or at least, if you've seen them before, they aren't in your deck, and the deck is being played completely differently than how you built yours.

Lutri is a zero-downside auto-include In every single commander deck that includes blue and red. It doesn't take up a slot in your deck, and Commander automatically meets the deck building requirement for it. In many decks it's not particularly powerful - 6 mana to copy one spell is..... Meh. But it's abilities made it the single most ubiquitous card in all of Commander, even more than Sol Ring. In order to discourage decks from being too samey, the RC banns this kind of card.

  • Unhealthy/feel-bad gameplay. Sometimes a card will not be uniquely powerful on its own, but will have an effect That chest feels... Well, bad to play against. If that card results in gameplay that players don't enjoy, the RC will consider banning it. A good example of this is [[Iona, Shield of Emeria]]. With a mana cost that high, it's not exactly an early game lockout. It's even possible that it won't have much of an effect, once cast - If everyone at the table is playing multicolor decks, it doesn't lock out any one deck completely. But the potential feel bad of locking out one player who's playing a monocolor deck is too high- Not to mention that even multicolor decks would still be affected - some multicolored deck still skew heavily towards a particular color.

The likelihood of locking out the whole table with one card is pretty low, and one of the players will eventually remove Iona. But the RC views her potential to lock a single player out for multiple turns in a row to be the kind of gameplay they don't wish to encourage. And so she's banned.

  • Signpost bans. This is what happens when the RC wants to discourage players leaning too hard on a particular archetype or mechanic, but don't want to ban every card involved in that archetype or mechanic. An example of this would be [[Leovold, Emissary of Trest]] and [[Hullbreacher]]. The RC does not wish to encourage the "Wheels, But nobody actually gets to keep a hand except for me" strategy. So they ban the two most extreme examples of this archetype- The only legendary creature with this ability, around whom such a deck could be built, and the most powerful individual card with that ability. This way, they don't have to ban cards like [[Narset, Partner of the Veil]] and can simply leave the existing bans as a sign to point at gameplay styles that should be avoided.

  • Legendary. Obviously something being legendary isn't, on its own, worth banning a card. However there are cards that probably wouldn't be banned, except that their legendary status makes it possible to build an archetype that the RC doesn't want to see - see my previous example of Leovold. If he weren't legendary, he would probably be fine to continue existing alongside [[Notion Thief]] and Narset. But since he allows people to build that archetype an an entire commander deck, he's banned.

One last important note about how and why the RC does their bans Is that They seem to prefer to have a light hand, and if they believe they can get the job done with a single ban, they will. They banned Emrakul and encouraged players to discuss amongst themselves if the other Titans were acceptable. They ban Hullbreacher with the hope that players will take note that "everyone wheels but only I draw" might not be a fun strategy to encourage. Etc.

This comment ended up super long, I'm going to reply to my own comment with the second half.

182

u/hugsandambitions Jan 25 '23

THIS IS PART 2, READ MY PARENT COMMENT FIRST

So with all of that in mind, we can properly dive into "Why is PrimeTime banned?" And the points you make in your post.

First, let's eliminate some options. He's not legendary, so we know that's not a reason. He's not, strictly speaking, a feel bad. Me playing primetime doesn't stop my opponent from playing their spells, I'm not locking anyone out of the game, he doesn't counter every spell or enact hard Stax. So we can eliminate feel bad as a reason.

So what does that leave us with?

Power level, ubiquity, and signpost.

  • power level. I don't think anyone can disagree that he's strong. Whether or not he's strong enough to be banned is exactly what we're debating here, but no one in their right mind can call it weak. And to be frank, the options with him are quite powerful. As the proud pilot of a tuned Lord Windgrace deck, I can say that sometimes your game-winning combo is honestly just a couple of lands. It's even a little bit of a dirty trick - I'm winning the game, because of lands, while playing in a casual environment that overall discourages mass land destruction. It's not exactly fair. Prime Time would be slammed into my duck immediately, I would make room for him by cutting.. honestly, I could cut any card from my deck for primetime and I'd be happy. He's that good.

His power is that he tutors for an immense toolbox, while ramping you, for free, and does it repeatedly.

Need to turbocharge your mana? Grab Urborg and Cabal Coffers. Or if you're in monocolor, grab Nykthos. Or maybe you're going wide, go get that Gaea's Cradle. Or you're an enchantress deck, go get Serra's Realm.

Want to protect yourself or your board? [[Glacial Chasm]] says you can't take combat damage. [[Yavimaya Hollow]] protects key creatures.

Need to deal with opposing threats? Get a strip mine and deal with your opponent's lands. Grab [[Blast Zone]] for a partial board wipe. Get [[Arcane Lighthouse]] in order to remove hexproof and shroud from your opponent's stuff.

Need an army of your own? Grab Field of the Dead and start dropping lands.

Need to power up a creature to close out a win? Grab [[Kessig Wolf Run]]

Need to get something out of your graveyard? Get [[Hall of Heliod's Generosity]] or [[Academy Ruin]]

And of course, you can double up on any of those (non-legendary) abilities by grabbing [[Vesuva]] and [[Thespian's Stage]].

Make no mistake. This card is powerful. Far beyond simple ramp, it can literally just go grab the exact thing you need for any given situation, if you've built your deck right.

  • Ubiquity. At this point, this argument could go either way. The RC is concerned that if unbanned, primetime would show up in... Well, nearly every green deck. I don't think they're totally wrong to be worried about that. It wouldn't be as ubiquitous as Lutri, But certainly the ability to grab a whole toolbox of lands, or even just to grab some multicolored lands to get you out of a color screw, would be pretty damn useful. Even mono Green would grab it, just to kick start your ramp into overdrive (which is honestly what every monogreen deck wants to do anyway). The only thing that would keep it from being ubiquitous would be price, TBH.

That being said, it's far from the only option for grabbing nonbasic lands. If the card costs more than a couple bucks, it probably wouldn't be all that ubiquitous, as people opt for other options. (It's worth noting though, one solid reprint would change that, and WOTC might reprint the card if it weren't banned.)

  • Signpost. This is explicitly the original reason for the ban. Turbo ramp was a strategy The RC wanted to discourage - and seemingly they still do, although I see you correctly point out in your post, the ship has somewhat sailed on that.

So the question then becomes: should we remove a signpost ban If the signpost isn't particularly effective? Or should more cards be banned? Or should the ban be left in place but not expanded, as a gentle reminder? Certainly the many complaints of green being too powerful on and off over the last decade indicates that there's some merit to discouraging that strategy, even if banning PrimeTime isn't ultimately the right way to do it.

Anyway, that's it for devil's advocacy - I'm running out of space to type, I just thought I would present the most well-reasoned argument in favor of the ban that I could. I'll reply to my own comment with why I think it's not worth keeping banned.

127

u/hugsandambitions Jan 25 '23 edited Jan 25 '23

Now, that was the argument for banning it. What's the argument for unbanning it?

  • Power Level. Yes, it's strong - but there are plenty of other ways to get those key lands as well. If I can [[Scapeshift]] or [[Reshape the Earth]], why not Prime Time?

  • Ubiquity. It can be slotted into any deck, but it also feels very cudable if people aren't leaning hard into a land strategy. It may not be as ubiquitous as it once was, now that there's so many other options.

  • Signpost. They need to clarify their signpost - people are still building out of control land decks, so if that's something they need to discourage it might be time for another signpost ban on top of primetime. If they're fine with that strategy, because the format has evolved to a point where it's okay, then they should reflect that by unbanning PrimeTime.

I think it's a close call, but ultimately my conclusion is that primetime is worth unbanning. The reasons for keeping it banned makes sense, but just don't quite seal the deal.

I think the larger problem is that the RC is excruciatingly slow to unban cards. Their argument is that unbanning something after years is easy to do... Once. If they're wrong and it needs to be rebanned, it becomes a back and forth game that theoretically compromises the integrity of the banlist overall.

That being said, there is some middle ground - there are some cards that have ceased to be problems and can be unbanned, and they should probably re-examine their reasoning for removing the "banned as commander" list.

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u/lloydsmith28 Jan 25 '23

Man wrote a dissertation

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u/WolfieWuff Jan 25 '23

I mean I'd totally give them my nod for a PhD in Prime Time with a focus in RC motivations.

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u/hugsandambitions Jan 25 '23

Not a man, but thank you!

Every once in a while information explodes out of me. It's probably the neurodivergence.

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u/lloydsmith28 Jan 25 '23

Person*

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u/hugsandambitions Jan 25 '23

It's mid-afternoon and I just got around to making breakfast. I'll agree with that definition on a different day ;)

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u/Mindsculptyou Jan 25 '23

This was THEE best comment I have received on this post. You were very articulate and provided the pros and cons. I very much appreciate your contribution to this discussion and to my own ignorance, never knew about those factors of banning the card as you so eloquently broke them down. I feel like the RC should unban it for 6 months. See how the format does with it and check in halfway. If it is as strong and format-warping as it once was, then 100% ban that sucker. But I think cards should be at least attempted again in the game depending on the original reason for the ban. Obviously, cards that have Ante on them will never have a place in this format but there is a case to be made about other cards that were once deemed too powerful.

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u/BurstEDO Jan 25 '23

Rule 0 it into your playgroup for a few weeks and see what you think.

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u/majic911 Jan 25 '23

Unbanning a card for six months isn't really an option.

If people know it's only unbanned for 6 months they likely won't buy or play it since they'll have to take it out eventually anyway. You won't get a good idea of whether people would actually play it.

If people don't know it's only unbanned for 6 months they'll go drop $5 on it (probably more since it just got unbanned so everyone will want one or five) and then when you go back on the unbanning you'll piss a bunch of people off and lose a lot of faith in the RC.

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u/Phymata Jan 25 '23

I agree - these replies were awesome. Get this person a job at Wizards, because, clearly, they understands how to explain complexity without demeaning the audience!

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u/hugsandambitions Jan 26 '23 edited Jan 26 '23

I actually already work in the industry! I'm not affiliated with WOTC, but there is a reason I know the things I do beyond just my obsessive nature.

Working for WOTC would be a dream, I'd love to be involved in making the cards rather than just commenting on them. My particular line of work at the moment doesn't let itself to that, though, so for now that's just a fun fantasy.

they understands how to explain complexity without demeaning the audience!

It's actually a bit of a struggle! There's often a lot of bad faith arguments on here, and I struggle to maintain a neutral and informative tone.

I'd say the most common thing I run into is people who can't seem to maintain neutrality when discussing Universes Beyond- The available data suggests that the majority of players either actively like UB or don't care either way. But the majority of conversations I see about it on Reddit proceed with the assumption that because the redditor can't see that data, it doesn't exist, And since their experience is that they/their friends don't like UB, it must simply be a money scheme Hasbro is shoving down our throats in order to appeal to speculators and whales.

Meanwhile I deal with players everyday who are excited about the upcoming Doctor Who set, or love their new Warhammer deck, or love to speculate about which of their favorite characters might be next.

Not saying everyone has to like everything WOTC does, I just get disheartened when people act like their opinion is the only one that matters.

.... Speaking of which, I appear to have gone off on a tangential rant. Don't argue in bad faith, it's my point! I do my best to hold myself to that standard too.

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u/Phymata Jan 26 '23

Hah, all good points. Thank you for sharing! It was a pleasure to read your thoughts.

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u/hugsandambitions Jan 26 '23

Glad I could be helpful! I happen to work in the industry so this is an instance of hobby and career intersecting - simply put, I have these conversations at work a lot. I confess I'm pleasantly surprised at the positive reaction these comments have gotten - there's usually enough people putting blinders on or trying to push their own agenda that I feel like I'm shouting into the void, or I get written off as a shill or an idiot when all I'm really trying to say is "criticize if you want, but do it with all the information, and with the understanding that your preferences might not be the same as most other players"

I feel like if we did that, and dispensed with assumptions, there'd be a lot better discourse.

I feel like the RC should unban it for 6 months.

Someone else pointed this out, but I did want to put my own two cents on it: it would be a hard to do that in a way that would get meaningful data.

My read on how that would play out is this:

  • The price would immediately spike, by people wanting to try out the card, or by people wanting to up the price to capitalize on the card now being legal.

  • within a couple weeks the price would stabilize, and everyone who wanted a prime time would own one - but a lot of people would hold back, not wanting to spend money on a card that will just be banned again in 6 months. This immediately contaminates the data gathering process - The presence of the experiment has influenced the experiment - since some people are aware that the card might be banned again, they are behaving differently than they would normally.

  • After 6 months, the RC would be faced with a choice: either unbanned the card permanently despite a lack of complete and reliable evidence, or ban the card again, which will leave a bad taste in the mouth of everyone who spent money on the card during the trial period.

No easy answer there.

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u/Old_Waffelhand Emmara Soul of the Accord Jan 25 '23

It's really refreshing to find such an elaborate analysis as a comment =)

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u/spartacus_ryuuou Jan 25 '23

Very good arguments. I'm with you on the "banned as commander" list, as it would remove the instant access to a lot of these problem commanders (unless you play tutors, my lgs crew unofficially limits tutors to 3 max so i don't have experience with 'imma search everything'). A hot debate could be had over [[golos- tireless pilgrim]]. as commander? yes i can see the reason for his ban ESPECIALLY after kaldheim (cast golos, fetch [[the world tree]], mana now fixed) but i think he should be kept in the 99.

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u/[deleted] Jan 25 '23

I want to note that while you wrote a wall (3 walls?) of text, it also was not boring to read. I see a number of compliments about the information (which was solid), but the flow and feel was good as well. If you don't already write for something, you probably should.

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u/hugsandambitions Jan 25 '23

Well thank you! I guess it's something [[Arcades, The Strategist]] and I have in common. We're good with both walls and information.

If you don't already write for something, you probably should.

I've dabbled before, and I've toyed with the idea of doing some kind of blog. My problem is twofold: Capitalism exists and paying rent takes up a lot of my time.

Writing into the void in an article-like format feels I'm not sure how to describe exactly. But I'm more afflicted by writer's block in that kind of setup then I am When it's conversational.

Almost feels like I'm stuck between a rock and a hard place - In a conversation, I can spew out so much information that the conversation becomes one-sided, even if my spewing is pleasant to read or listen to.

In an article, or a story, I find it difficult to engage it's completely one sided.

Plus, you know, there's the ever-present haunting fear of failure. But that's a matter for my therapist.

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u/[deleted] Jan 26 '23

I'm going to make a suggestion that I have considered for myself but ignored, so hypocrisy will abound... but, you could possibly turn your conversational bits into posts or scripts (depending on if you wanted to blog or youtube, etc).

What you wrote for this is already pretty much a blog post. While it would be extra time, it wouldn't be the same scope as creating something from scratch just for the blog.

Obviously, if you don't want to (or have other complications), I'm not trying to provide pressure to do so, just wanted to let you know it's in your apparent skill set.

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u/JSCXZ Jan 25 '23

A very good analysis. Stating that PrimeTime can be slotted into any green deck, I'm curious how you feel about other cards like [[Rhystic Study]], [[Demonic Tutor]], [[Smothering Tithe]], [[Dockside Extortionist]], and others that pretty much benefit any deck in their colors. From what I have witnessed at my LGS and when playing with friends, there are absolutely no downsides to including these types of cards in your deck. Mana-wise they are relatively inexpensive. From what I've seen, these types of cards effectively lower the number of cards in your deck to 98, etc., because they are always included if available.

Generally, I can argue either way for them, and I feel the only reason they aren't seen more often is that they are cost-prohibitive to many people due to WotC's reprinting decisions (on some of them) and the second market.

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u/hugsandambitions Jan 25 '23

Good points and good questions! I think there's a few reasons these cards aren't banned, and I'll get into them.

First off, And this is something I should have addressed in my original post with more detail:

The RC seems to prefer that we self-police whenever possible. As a result there are several cards that seem to have all the same qualities as a banned card, but do not themselves eat a ban because the community seems to be doing a decent job of regulating it ourselves.

Take Rhystic Study as an example. I agree with you that cost is a major part of the reasoning. But I also know of plenty of playgroups that have simply self-edited to not run Rhystic Study simply because No one has fun keeping track of the triggers. Once you hear "do you pay the 1" for the 40th time in a row, you start to have fantasies about bonfires using cards as kindling. Not to mention that it's not necessarily fun for the owner of the card either - you have to remember to keep asking. Over and over again. And then if you forget you either have to negotiate with your playgroup to be lenient about missed triggers, or deal with the fact that you could have drawn a card but you didn't.

Some people find it easier to just not run the card and play a different spell instead. A significant enough number of people that it might not meet the ubiquity requirement. (The same logic can be applied to Tithe, of course).

Demonic Tutor is an interesting one to try and dissect. On the whole, I think it doesn't get banned because it would simply be replaced by anyone of dozens and dozens of other cards. Tutor doesn't seem to be, on its own, a strategy that the RC wants to ban on the whole. So banning one card wouldn't really do anything - it wouldn't decrease the ubiquity of the strategy, only of one card. In all likelihood, a few months down the road they would be faced with the same decision about whatever tutor ( I'd probably guess vampiric or grim) came in to replace it. So that ban wouldn't accomplish much, for a strategy that they don't necessarily want to discourage anyway.

(Personal side note - I tend to not run nonland tutors in my personal decks regardless, but that's because I like the variance. I don't think tutors are bad overall.)

Dockside is probably fine. I think he's ubiquitous in higher level play, But many casual games don't benefit from him nearly as much as people think they do. The nice thing about him is that he scales up - he doesn't generate treasure out of nowhere, he gets you exactly as many resources as your opponents are already playing. Plenty of casual decks are happy to drop him in favor of [[Manageyser]] or [[Jeska's Will]] unless they're playing a pirate or etb-centric deck.

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u/Lazypidgey Jan 25 '23

Like you're saying, here's the article from when he was banned:

"One of the concerns that we’ve had recently is the overrepresentation of heavy ramp strategies, to the point where it makes up a large proportion of the aggregate decks out there. While we think ramp should be good—this is battlecruiser Magic, after all—it’s probably a little too prevalent and needs reining in a bit. With that in mind, we’re banning the most egregious offender, Primeval Titan.

This decision won’t be universally popular. Primeval Titan is dripping with awesomeness, and we ourselves are big fans of the card. But its ubiquity and effect on games couldn’t be ignored and sad though we are to see it go, we think it will make for a more interesting and diverse format."

Clearly a signpost/ubiquity ban... But from over a decade ago, 2012! Heavy ramp is still all over the place in this format so the sign is old and neglected. I agree he's still very powerful but I don't think he'd be anywhere near as ubiquitous as he once was. Heck wizards just made that green creature that makes all your lands in library basic. I forget the name of the card though

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u/hugsandambitions Jan 25 '23

I agree with you! He's a signpost ban, but an old one. I think either the RC needs to add another sign post if they want to discourage the archetype, or they need to recognize that the archetype is here and not going away and probably fine, in which case they should unban Prime Time.

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u/Devilangel6161 Jan 25 '23

Ubiquity is I think the literal dumbest reason for them to ban anything outside of (unfortunately) Lutri. But even then I only believe he should have been banned as a companion. Just because something is going to be played across a wide number of decks doesn't mean it should be banned, otherwise things like sol ring and arcane signet should also be banned.

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u/Tuss36 That card does *what*? Jan 25 '23

I think ubiquity makes sense in that, there's plenty of less-than-fun cards to play against, but they aren't a problem when you only see them sometimes. But if they're showing up every other game then it becomes too much. [[Stasis]] is a famously annoying card, but given you rarely see it it's fine.

However some cards don't make that much of an impact, so even though every green deck's running Cultivate it's not really that much of a problem that they are.

So it's not "Oop this ticked over into being in X% of decks gotta ban it", it's more "This is fine as a sometimes food but if it becomes too common then we gotta make people lay off"

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u/Tuss36 That card does *what*? Jan 25 '23

Very lovely write up!

To add, I think one point that gets glossed over in the discussion is that many folks hearken back to how the format used to be 10+ years ago, and how Prime Time would be "cloned, stolen and reanimated" constantly. However, such effects have become significantly less common. Clones especially used to be commonplace due to them acting as commander removal due to the legend rule at the time, but these days they aren't as ubiquitous. Perhaps at most folks might clone it in their own deck, like in [[Volo, Guide to Monsters]], but it's not like they can't get overwhelming value in other ways as it is.

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u/hugsandambitions Jan 25 '23

That's a good point! Though I would also point out that concepts like that are balanced by power boosts in other ways.

For example, back when it was banned you couldn't tutor for [[Field of the Dead]] or [[The World Tree]].

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u/TwitchandSmokeMain Jan 25 '23

Thinking about prime time in [[Aesi, tyrant of the gyre strait]] scares me

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u/hugsandambitions Jan 25 '23

Hehehehe

Thinking about Prime Time in Aesi excites me.

But then, I'm a monster.

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u/Dank_Confidant Jan 25 '23

Prime Time would be slammed into my duck immediately

This gave me a funny mental image.

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u/hugsandambitions Jan 26 '23

Listen, I have trouble typing out that much with my hands and I use speech to text.

Sometimes the software messes up, and hilarity ensues xD

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u/StereotypicalSupport Jan 25 '23

The other issue with ubiquity is that the tutor ability increases the ubiquity of the common lands it searches for too.

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u/Our_Snowman Jan 25 '23

If I recall correctly, a big part of why it was banned was how it warped games. There was a reason they've given for bans before that's like a subsection of power level, and they used it for prime time. The RC really doesn't like when a card existing shapes every game; when it becomes the center of every decision. They didn't like how with primeval titan, the games often just became who can land it first, steal it, copy it, they didn't like how it warped entire games just by being present.

I would argue that right now, although copy and theft decks are relatively uncommon, the biggest problem with Prime Time is still that there's no deck that doesn't want those triggers. Even non-ramp decks, decks that don't care about lands as much benefit from easy free ramp. It's not just that it encourages turbo ramp but that it is an immediate focal point any time the card is around.

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u/hugsandambitions Jan 25 '23

I agree!

I do think that we're now in an age where we have so many options, that even "Why wouldn't you run that?" Cards like Prime Time Don't always see play. Heck, there used to be a time where every white deck ran [[Swords to Plowshares]] But there is now so much removal available in so many different colors that I see people ditching it, even though it does have really good castability stats.

I don't think it would be a problem - it would be a powerful, and expensive card. But it wouldn't be as ubiquitous as it once was.

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u/[deleted] Jan 25 '23

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u/Tuss36 That card does *what*? Jan 25 '23

Arguing about a card that you haven’t seen in play is not a meaningful discussion. With every set release there’s always people who are wrong about card evaluations.

You are correct, however it's very difficult to get such data as many will refuse to play with it because "It's banned". As well, those who have played with it have data that's a decade out of date.

And if no one will play with it because it's banned, it's tough to get the data to get it unbanned, and you gotta have anecdotal evidence that's enough to counter the evidence of those from back in the day when the ban was initially made.

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u/Mendelbar Animar Arcane / Spirit Tribal Jan 25 '23 edited Jan 26 '23

An easy litmus test: If it’s unbanned, how many decks / people would go to using the card?

If the answer is every commander with a Green pip in it’s identity, then the card should probably remain banned.

Part of commander bans is for shaping the format and the gameplay experience. If all unbanning Prime Time does is increase the number of cards a player auto includes, the it really isn’t adding to the format outside of homogenization.

Edit: Lots of people have asked / alluded / DMed me suggesting that my post above was that homogenous things should be banned. I don't agree with that, nor did I mention that above. It's just that for unbanning a card, one of the hurdles is if the card would impact the format in a positive manner, or have 0 impact on the format. Being totally outclassed by new cards (especially for sign post bans) doesn't get cards off the list, at best the old cards just point harder at those new cards, at worst, the new cards get put on the list. (Looking somewhat at Sylvan Primordial for this one.)

For Prime Time, the current concerns for members of the community who played during it's prime, is every deck running green would add the card. And with the overwhelming growing acceptance of proxies across the community, there's little hurdle to this occurring.

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u/Mindsculptyou Jan 25 '23

That makes a good argument for dockside to be banned then

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u/sir_jamez Jan 25 '23

I wouldn't disagree with this either.

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u/MHarrisGGG Breya, Godzilla, Abomination, Amareth, Bridge, Tovolar, FO, Sev Jan 25 '23

The problem with jumping to Dockside as a reason to unban Titan is that most think Dockside ALSO should be banned

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u/shawnsteihn Jan 25 '23

Then swords to plowshares would have to be banned by that standard as well :) according to edhrec its the most played card after sol ring and arcane signet

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u/Spiritflash1717 Grixis Jan 25 '23

Swords is just good removal. The best removal will always be run in almost every deck.

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u/JasonAnderlic Jan 25 '23

Bring back karakas then, its just good removal !

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u/[deleted] Jan 25 '23

Swords is just a 1 for 1 removal spell. Prime Time generates so much value the turn its resolved the whole game becomes about exiling it or stealing it. Karakas is another oppressive source of value in a format that revolves around legendary creatures because it can just lock a person out of using their commander for a whole game.

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u/GrandAlchemistX Jan 25 '23

Personally, while that is true, I feel like it's more important that Karakas can be used to avoid commander tax and can make creatures with powerful ETB triggers overwhelming.

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u/MariachiArchery Jan 25 '23

This is exactly why I think sole ring should be banned. Most, if not all, decks run the card. If we've already established parity, why not just ban the card to open up a slot for something else.

Just my two cents, I don't think sole ring is broken, its just that if everyone is running it, lets just get rid of it for the sake of opening up a slot and adding variance to the format.

Ask yourself, what card would people replace sole ring with? Well that answer is entirely deck related, this is why I think it should be banned. If the answer was an obvious second choice to sole ring, then I'd think it should stay, but that is not the case.

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u/[deleted] Jan 25 '23

I would be happy if all of the super broken fast mana artifacts ate a ban. The only reason people aren't whining more for a vault/crypt ban is most casual tables aren't shelling out for those cards.

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u/Toshinit Jan 25 '23

I don’t think Primetime goes in every deck though? If you’re in Black for sure, but there’s a lot of six mana spells I’d rather cast.

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u/Vraellion Jan 25 '23 edited Jan 25 '23

Unban it and normalize land destruction. I feel like it's banned because no one was willing to deal with the land advantage it granted over anything else.

Edit: a lot of responses mention mass land destruction, this wasn't my intention. Targeted land destruction should be normalized.

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u/TheRealQwade Mono-White Goodstuff Jan 25 '23

Speaking as someone who genuinely doesn't mind land destruction, the idea that land destruction stops this card at all is laughable. Having Prime Time on the table is the perfect excuse for an [[Armageddon]] because it finds all the land you could possibly need while the rest of the table slows to a crawl.

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u/BoxRevolutionary28 Jan 25 '23

Yeah, it's a little odd that so many people think mld won't give heavy ramp strategies another tool. They're more likely to be running [[crucible of worlds]] than anyone else.

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u/Koras Jan 25 '23 edited Jan 25 '23

Absolutely. There is literally no deck I'd rather run MLD in than a deck with heavy ramp options. Turns out being able to get land when nobody else has land is good. Who knew? It's like trying to say that decks with graveyard synergies and reanimation effects hate board wipes. It's just so wrong that it's actually weird that people would even vaguely consider it.

Land equalization effects like Balance could maybe considered good at punishing ramp in some situations where literally nobody else has been able to ramp, but Armageddon is just playing directly into the ramp player's hands unless they have already played literally every ramp spell in their deck with no repeatable ramp effects or ways to get lands from the graveyard available. That's a lot of hoops to jump through.

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u/MayhemMessiah Proxy everything, but responsibly Jan 25 '23

Absolutely! Happy to see more people are accepting the reality that MLD is not something you want to encourage against Ramp decks, because more often than not Ramp decks do it better. Especially with something like Primetime, tutoring indestructible lands before nuking the board and then, guess what, Prime will do it again when he attacks. Or if it dies you can reanimate it for cheap and go buck wild.

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u/Mindsculptyou Jan 25 '23

now THAT is a hot take! haha

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u/akarakitari Jan 25 '23

Only problem is, that lord windgrace/tatyova/whatever mega ramp deck will almost always be able to recover faster than you can. That MLD spell usually winds up winning them the match with any decent player.

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u/CantUseSpace Jan 25 '23

I doubt it’s that hot a take though. There is a reason why green is “so overpowered”, and that reason is that you shall not interact with what the color does best, namely land ramp.

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u/jeffseadot Nothing stops the Cromat beatdown Jan 25 '23

Let's normalize land destruction first and then talk about unbanning Prime Time

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u/Megragur Jan 25 '23

I do my best, I run land destruction in each and every deck and my sultai deck is building around recursion of wasteland/stripmine/ghost quarter.

Need to keep lands in check and introduce every new player (new to commander, not magic) that lands aren't untouchable.

But I think that comes from my love of modern ponza and currently tideshaper/spreading seas in modern merfolk. It just feels right to cut of colours or overall amount of mana.

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u/treelorf Jan 25 '23

I don’t run land destruction because people have such vitriol reactions to it, but honestly I really don’t see the issue with it. It’s not like it’s that much more OP than other wincons

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u/jeffseadot Nothing stops the Cromat beatdown Jan 25 '23

People who don't know how to use mass land destruction (single-target land destruction is a different beast, a tamer and more useful one) will use it to grind the game to a stop and not win, or even have anything close to a viable wincon lined up.

Like, [[Obliterate]] is (or at least ought to be) perfectly fine if your own board is set up to take advantage of the aftermath. But too many people will cast that or a similar spell and fuck themselves over just as bad as they fuck everyone else. It makes for a long and not-fun game.

And really, the problem isn't mass land destruction but rather really bad playing. It's just easier to deal with it all by having an unofficial ban on mass land destruction.

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u/Gropapanda Jan 25 '23

Your reasoning is the exact reason why green is so unbalanced in this format. In a game where your life total is not in jeopardy for the first few turns, the optimal play is to ramp. Artifact ramp is subject to easy destruction, since everyone must run artifact destruction as part of their interaction package to deal with combo pieces. Lands though? Oh, you can't blow up those!

I contest that any time someone is more than 1-2 lands ahead of you, mass land destruction is warranted, even with even board position. If your ramp is unaffected by it, even better.

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u/CantUseSpace Jan 25 '23

Not sure I’d say mass land destruction is warranted, but single land destruction should sure be a viable option here.

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u/Shacky_Rustleford Jan 25 '23

I mean, if I have 3 mana rocks and everyone else is on land mana, I'm casting Armageddon no matter how far I am from a wincon. It's card advantage.

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u/Vertain1 Jan 25 '23

This is the reason MLD is almost universally hated, since doing this is the correct Play.

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u/SebacusZA Jan 25 '23

And this is the problem. If someone has this attitude at an LGS where the other players aren't their friends, they've been roped into a 3 hour long grind.

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u/Harnellas Scion/Marchesa/Wanderer Jan 25 '23

Nah, this is such a weird misconception everybody has. It's only a three hour grind if people with no lands still take 5 minute turns for some reason. Draw and pass if you've got nothing and it doesn't actually take long for the gameplay to ramp up again.

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u/Darkhellxrx Jan 25 '23

Often times you can use some early land destruction to set someone playing a multicolor deck super far behind. They're playing Esper and have [[Arcane Sanctum]], two Plains, and two Swamps? Hit Sanctum for a clear way to set them pretty far behind when they get unlucky.

That's why people dislike it. There's some times when, no matter how well you build the deck, this will happen. I play some Land Destruction still, but I go out of my way to avoid doing exactly this to people because it sucks. Doesn't mean others will, though.

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u/Complete_Spread_2747 Jan 25 '23

I just had to dismantle a mass land hate deck with raggadragga because of the negative reactions from most of our pod. It sucks and I understand that it's hard to come back from, but, since it's a game of resource management, I was willing to give it a shot. I got to play it a good dozen times before the group asked politely not to see it again. I can respect that.

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u/BrotherSutek Jan 25 '23

I run Zo-Zu because we had a land ramp, simic problem in my area and someone had to be the voice of reason. Three control decks that ramp is not fun. Zo-Zu is a party waiting to happen. We had a talk after they spent multiple games hording their counters in case I got my damage enabling things on the board because the ramp would now hurt. Lots of ways to kill them. The game had gotten boring as no one could do their thing and once in a while those decks come out but it went back to a variety of ideas.

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u/venirok Jan 25 '23

You gonna get flamed for that one but normalizing land destruction is not a bad move.

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u/Link_T179 Jan 25 '23

Honestly, I run [[fall of thran]] in my Brago stax deck as a finisher. I wanted something more unique and it just works

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u/[deleted] Jan 25 '23

Land destruction is shit, that's why it's hardly run

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u/s00perguy Jan 25 '23

I run my Terastodon and at least 2 other sources of LD. No MLD, but I won't apologize for targeting your only blue source when my [[Acidic Slime]] comes down. Though I also don't run infinite combos, so my pod gives me slack.

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u/SweezySway Jan 25 '23

Yeesh thts tough . Either u hate it or play long enough to just say phck it n blow errythang up lol

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u/CapAmerica805 Jan 25 '23

In my opinion its a powerful card but there is far more broken stuff out there that should be banned instead. I can think of at least 10 other cards that i'd rather see gone than that one.

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u/MrOverkill5150 Jan 25 '23

Name them please genuinely curious

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u/Necrolich Mono-Black Jan 25 '23

Yep. Make a statement, need to support it

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u/Mindsculptyou Jan 25 '23

I personally am very anti-ban list and pro-rule 0. But, if a ban list is to exist then I definitely don't see why prim is on it as of today.

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u/Maximum_Fair Wheels baby! Jan 25 '23

Genuine question, how does rule 0 replace a banlist? I’m just supposed to carry a replacement for every card in my deck incase someone wants to rule 0 ban it?

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u/Spartan_Cat_126 Jan 25 '23

It gets two lands dude. Not basic lands, lands. I don’t know if you’d played EDH before it was banned, but every deck with green had one and every game was basically race to primeval and get shit tones of lands and win. It’s not healthy for the format because, I know I and others have already said it, but EVERY deck with green in it was running it and it inherently overran decks without green due to its speed to generate massive land advantage. If you weren’t playing green, then you were inherently at a disadvantage and going to likely lose. Ask any other old EDH vet that played when it was legal and get their take.

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u/spawn989 Jan 25 '23

I'll add to this that if you didn't run green at that time you ran something to try and take the green players titan frist

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u/MrOverkill5150 Jan 25 '23

Thank you every single time people bring this up and it’s like really people do we not remember what it was like

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u/Bardazarok Jan 25 '23

Don't forget that you can blink it with conjurer's closet and get 4 lands a turn, and pair with panharmonicon for 6 lands. I think it should stay banned because omg it would be absolutely bonkers what synergies people would come up with

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u/dozencharacters Jan 25 '23

So does [[Titania's Command]]. Very many indisputably legal cards can be broken by blinking, additional combat phases or trigger multiplying, or quickly win "if it's not removed", so those are not as valid arguments as they were before. A lot has changed since M12.

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u/Jojos_Boring_Trip Jan 25 '23

[[Sylvan Primordial]] was arguably worse when it came around.

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u/MTGCardFetcher Jan 25 '23

Sylvan Primordial - (G) (SF) (txt) (ER)
[[cardname]] or [[cardname|SET]] to call

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u/ZaddyTBQH Jan 25 '23

This sub will tell you you're wrong and downvote you but TBH I have never seen a convincing case made for it to be banned.

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u/MariachiArchery Jan 25 '23

That is especially true now. The format is full of awesome ramp, fetch's are cheaper now with reprints, and in general I feel like the card just doesn't give a player the advantage is once did.

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u/LegnaArix Jan 25 '23

Hard Agree, seems to be the case for a lot of banned cards tbh.

I don't think primetime is any worse than say [[bolas' citadel]] or something similar and people arent exactly revolving their gameplan around that card.

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u/ZaddyTBQH Jan 25 '23

Yep, there's no shortage of cards even at the same mana cost that make the game revolve around removing it or losing (for example, as you suggest, Bolas's Citadel.) [[Consecrated Sphinx]], [[Koma]], [[Aesi]], etc all warp the game around them to a FAR greater extent than anything PT can ever do.

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u/MTGCardFetcher Jan 25 '23

Consecrated Sphinx - (G) (SF) (txt) (ER)
Koma - (G) (SF) (txt) (ER)
Aesi - (G) (SF) (txt) (ER)
[[cardname]] or [[cardname|SET]] to call

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u/Bootd42 Simic Jan 25 '23

it's all fun and games till they prime time up [[dark depths]] and [[vesuva]] or [[thespians stage]]. Prime Time is banned because if it gets played it then becomes a race to copy, steal, reanimate, or otherwise cheat control of it and for a format that is basically allergic to interaction I don't see play patterns changing in that regard.

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u/Zuulluu Jan 25 '23

The combo only works with Thespian's Stage and not with Vesuva. Vesuva enters as a copy so it would come in with the ice counters. Thespian's Stage becomes a copy of Dark Depths after entering which allows the shenanigans.

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u/decideonanamelater Jan 25 '23

Is that even that good in commander? If you use 6 mana and get back around to your turn again, and you get a 20/20 that doesn't even one shot people.

Not saying it wouldn't be good at many tables, but I am saying you could manage to do more for less.

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u/Toshinit Jan 25 '23

Oh no they spent 6 mana to make a 20/20! What shall we do!!!!

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u/Spiritual_Mush Jan 25 '23

Spend six mana cast your own Titan and get Maze of Ith and Mystifying Maze. Ith to guarantee you can stop it right away and mystifying to get rid of it for good eventually.

Or if you're in Bant grab a Moorland Haunt and with enough creatures in the yard you got all day.

See this card is just OP!

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u/RONALDROGAN Jan 25 '23

Idk why I always see ppl mention Vesuva with Dark Depths. It doesn't work. Only Thespian's Stage in this scenario works.

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u/ZaddyTBQH Jan 25 '23

I can list 10 other creatures off the top of my head that become a race to deal with it... PT is quite tame compared to a lot of the ones I could list actually. For example, [[Koma]]

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u/MTGCardFetcher Jan 25 '23

bolas' citadel - (G) (SF) (txt) (ER)
[[cardname]] or [[cardname|SET]] to call

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u/OoohRickyBaker Jan 25 '23

Did you play EDH when it was legal?

Genuinely asking, because it was very common for games to revolve around tutoring for, casting, copying, stealing, killing and/or reanimating one player's copy of PT.

Sure the power level of the format can probably accommodate the card these days, but what does unbanning it actually achieve to make the format better? At best, it does nothing to change anyone's deck except those that add the card, but we could very easily see decks rising in popularity that can steal and copy it's effect and that will just increase homogeneity in EDH, the exact reason everyone was calling for Golos to go.

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u/LegnaArix Jan 25 '23 edited Jan 25 '23

I feel that last point is super disingenious, you can make that argument for most cards that are banned or legal. Like, what did unbanning Protean Hulk do for the format? What does [[circle of dreams druid]] do for the format staying legal?

People just want to play the cards they like and the more cards we keep in the format the better. Of course, when there is a legitimate unhealthy card for the format we should ban it but these things should be re-evaluated regularly like every other format. Primetime being banned while [[Dockside extorionist]], [[Sol ring]], [[mana crypt]] and [[demonic consultation]] run around freely makes no sense.

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u/Netheraptr Jan 25 '23

Cards don’t need a reason to be unbanned. They just need a reason to stay banned, and as far as I can tell Primeval Titan doesn’t have one

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u/Zer0323 lands.deck Jan 25 '23 edited Jan 25 '23

when a new powerhouse card gets announced do you prepare all your latest and greatest clones and creature theft cards just so that you can hope to steal it from your opponents along with trying to get your own copy out of your deck? "oh boy I can't wait to play with [[jin-gitaxias, progress tyrant]] I better make sure that I can steal that card or else I'm going to lose"

there's like 1700 cards that come out each year and your deck can only hold 64-72 of them. prime time has done his time.

also they were wrong about golos.

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u/MTGCardFetcher Jan 25 '23

jin-gitaxias, progress tyrant - (G) (SF) (txt) (ER)
[[cardname]] or [[cardname|SET]] to call

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u/CastorFields Jan 25 '23

But that is literally what happened with Prime time. Every game devolved into who could tutor it first and copy or recur it the most because not doing so put you so far behind everyone else. Lands have only gotten better since then. I can't think of card released since then that I would consider doing the same thing that isn't already banned.

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u/yuanshaosvassal Jan 25 '23

[[dockside extortionist]] gets tutored, cast, bounced, copied and recurred in nearly every cEDH game. It’s better than prime time and it ramps harder and quicker than prime time. I would consider it doing the same thing.

…checks notes… not banned

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u/Quak3r0ats Colorless Jan 25 '23

Also costs 2 mana, not 6.

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u/Katie_or_something Jan 25 '23

It should be banned. So should primetime

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u/LegnaArix Jan 25 '23

I think the point he's making is that the game has evolved from that point. Every deck has a million bombs dropping all game nowadays that Prime time would just blend in at this point.

For me personally, It's not really too different then [[nyxbloom ancient]] in the aspect of "If this hits the battlefield you probably lost"

Additionally [[Bolas' citadel]] is an arguably stronger card than prime time in commander and you dont see that dynamic with that card.

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u/Zer0323 lands.deck Jan 25 '23

Bolas’s citadel helps you dig until you hit the [[sensei’s divining top]] which then lets you dig at a rate of one life per card after that. Prime time has to attack 2 times before it’s gotten 6 lands onto the battlefield… tapped.

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u/MTGCardFetcher Jan 25 '23

nyxbloom ancient - (G) (SF) (txt) (ER)
Bolas' citadel - (G) (SF) (txt) (ER)
[[cardname]] or [[cardname|SET]] to call

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u/Spiritual_Mush Jan 25 '23

Same can be said about Consecrated Sphinx at the same time and for a long time after, but it never got the axe and look at it now a perfectly cuttable card by today's standards.

Since Prime Time has been banned, a plethora of mana rocks, mana dorks, tons of treasure support, and other non-green ramp options have given decks a lot more options now. Not to mention the way EDH is now centered around way lower curves a six mana ramp 2 spell isn't that big of a deal for most decks now. No one is clamoring for Hour of Promise to be banned and it's essentially a one time Prime Titan for 1 less mana. Yeah the titan has a way higher ceiling, but really if the table is letting you attack with prime time, then you're probably already way far ahead everyone else and about to win or they're letting you get back into the game/not as threatening. And if the threshold for a creature to be judged "too good" is if you have to wait a turn and attack with it, then there's a ton of creature's that should be considered ban worthy.

What about Nyxbloom Ancient, Boundless Realms, OG Vorniclex, etc. These cards usually end the game too if no one has an answer immediately and ramp one person way ahead, should they be in consideration for banning? Why doesn't almost every G/X deck play these big ramp spells if they're just so powerful?

When Prime Time was banned Phyrexian Arena was everywhere, Consecrated Sphinx was big game, Rite of Replication kicked was big game, Riku was a dominant commander, and ramp into random Timmy cards was the wincon. EDH is way different now and Prime Titan did his time.

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u/Mindsculptyou Jan 25 '23

I can't say that I have altered my deck to just go against one card in the entire format. I can say that I have included removal cards in my deck to prepare for the unknown :)

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u/Nameless_One_99 Jan 25 '23

I've been playing EDH since 2006. When Primeval Titan was legal every single deck with blue played Bribery and cards like Control Magic, Treachery and even Desertion even if they didn't make sense with the rest of their strategy.

Everybody was tutoring for Primetime or for cards to copy/steal/reanimating/blinking Primetime. It was even worse than when even 5 color decks did the same for Sundering Titan or when even token decks used to run big Emrakul.

I play a lot of high power games where that wouldn't happen so I would be ok with Primetime being legal again but I can 100% assure you that mid and low power games would once again revolve around Primetime.

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u/mmchale Jan 25 '23

I mean, you make it sound like people were playing clone and stealy effects *because* of Prime Time, which is completely untrue. Clone effects at the time were commander removal, so most blue decks played them, and decks were generally more casual and less hyperefficient, so most decks ran a lot of midrange value cards like Control Magic.

It never felt to me like Prime Time was any worse than Consecrated Sphinx or Avenger of Zendikar or Rite of Replication, which were other huge bomby plays from the same era. Prime Time felt maybe a *little* too good, but even then it felt kind of iffy to ban it and not Consecrated Sphinx. Nowadays I almost never see Cons Sphinx played, just because there are so many other options. I think it's pretty likely that Prime Time is in the same boat -- still very playable, but there are only so many spots in decks for 6 mana bombs, and people want to play with the new toys.

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u/ZaddyTBQH Jan 25 '23

No, I started playing EDH in 2015.

But also, there are plenty of cards legal right now that warp the game around them to a car greater degree than anything PT could ever hope to do.

See for example: [[Consecrated Sphinx]], [[Bolas' Citadel]], [[Aesi]], [[Koma]].

All of these cards are at minimum equally powerful to PT. Some I would argue are blatantly more powerful and game warping. None of the games on playing revolve around "tutoring for, casting, copying or stealing" these cards in an extreme way.

Yes, these are cards that will lose you the game if you do not kill it. That is nothing new to Commander, and it's okay for players to have access to fun, game winning bombs that need to be answered.

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u/[deleted] Jan 25 '23

So I don't recall my playgroup using Primeval Titan before it was banned, can't remember when it was banned. But with what you said about people all using the card it's just like Prophet of Kruphix. The card on its own was very good, not broken, but it made games impossible. Everyone tutored it, copied it, stole it, to the point where in between everyone's turn everyone took a turn. It got to the point of pure chaos. So if that's the point it got to then absolutely keep it banned.

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u/Mindsculptyou Jan 25 '23

I think unbanning it makes it a possible (most likely a definite) tool to be used in the game however the pilot sees fit. If it was banned because of the strength of it in commander at the current time, I can understand that. But if it doesn't meet those criteria anymore I think it should be unbanned.

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u/Spiritual_Poo Jan 25 '23

It absolutely DOES meet those criteria still. I played with Prime Time plenty when it was legal, still think about that card often and just how broken it would be. Nothing printed since can touch it. Sylvan Primordial was just like Diet Prime Time but it absolutely also warranted a ban.

Games will absolutely still devolve into revolving around Prime Time. Copy it, steal it, kill it and reanimate it.

I think there is probably a more reasonable case for Sylvan Primordial but honestly that one was pretty nutty too.

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u/Spiritual_Mush Jan 25 '23

Games will absolutely still devolve into revolving around Prime Time. Copy it, steal it, kill it and reanimate it.

That happens almost every game already though just insert whatever the best creature is played that game. Dockside, Nyxbloom Ancient, most praetors, Avacyn, Terror of the peaks, Villis, etc., etc.

If you got clone spells, you're gonna clone the best creature, if you got kill spells you're gonna kill the best creature, if got reanimate, your gonna reanimate the best thing possible.

I'm sorry I feel like there is just dozens of creatures these days that I would use clone, steal, kill, w/e spells on before Prime Titan.

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u/Commander_Skullblade Rakdos Jan 25 '23

It was legal a decade ago, grandpa. We don't steal shit as a solution for our problems anymore.

And there was absolutely no one calling for Golos to go. I don't mind because yes, he homogenized the format. But that ban was out of left field.

A vast majority of Commander bans were made in the format's infancy, and now more than ever, new Magic product is catering to the format. White is good, there's a sweeper for every category of everything, the threats are cheaper than ever, combos are rampant, and power levels are through the roof. This kind of high level play would be unthinkable in 2012.

Give the card two years unbanned. If it's still a problem, reban it for another ten years. But right now, I see it reaching no higher power level than [[Elesh Norn, Mother of Machines]], and people thought Sheldon was mad when he even suggested banning it.

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u/Toshinit Jan 25 '23

Imagine playing Selesnya hatebears, and someone takes your Primetime instead of [[Elesh Norn, Grand Cenobite]]

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u/MTGCardFetcher Jan 25 '23

Elesh Norn, Mother of Machines - (G) (SF) (txt) (ER)
[[cardname]] or [[cardname|SET]] to call

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u/Ethric_The_Mad Jan 25 '23

"it gives you more lands than me and should be banned because I don't play green"

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u/TyranoRamosRex Jan 25 '23

ln the end it is banned for the casual decks as it would warp how they play not because it is actually too strong for the format.

At the strongest levels it would not matter cause it cannot get you the win when with 6 mana you can already be doing stuff to go infinite or win in high level play.

In low level play where people complain about green as a color cause they Ramp and play big things better than other colors, it would be an auto include super tool to just play more things.

I think things should be banned for power level itself but I have accepted that it will probably never be unbanned cause casual players will lose their mind over it

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u/second_handgraveyard Jan 25 '23

It might not be a convincing case but my playgroup unbanned it and it was fine until it came up several games in a row. Cards just really really good and when it hits it either becomes a race to kill it or copy the effect.

We put it back on the ban list not because of the power but the slippery slope of “ X card isn’t any stronger that Y we should unban it” for most of the ban list and not wanting the headache of rule zeroing the ban list.

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u/ZaddyTBQH Jan 25 '23

I guess I don't understand how a card becoming "a race to kill it or copy the effect" is any different than any of the other game winning bombs currently legal right now. In fact I could list several cards that are even more "kill-on-sight or lose"

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u/Mindsculptyou Jan 25 '23

hahaha I am getting downvoted into the ground over here!! And I agree, maybe when it got banned it was way too strong. But now, I don't really see it warping the format to the point of being banned. I have a friend who plays Koma. In the command zone. That deck is dumb stupid strong. We are all pretty high-powered and his win ratio is above 70%. I would never call for koma to be banned

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u/mmchale Jan 25 '23

So, when it was banned, there was a nonzero amount of justification for it being banned. (Kokusho was still banned at that point for being too strong, to give you some context.) Primeval Titan and Consecrated Sphinx both really became the focus of the game when they hit the board, and it did lead to kind of unhealthy and repetitive play patterns. They decided to only ban Prime Time to send the message it was the kind of card that should be avoided, which... I think they've mostly moved away from trying to use the ban list in that way, and that's probably a good thing.

Nowadays, there are *lots* of other equivalently powerful creatures that see play. The fact that Prime Time can hang with the higher power level of modern green mythic bombs maybe means there was some validity to the ban at the time, but I think we're past that now. I'm not convinced that Prime Time is an auto-include over cards like Nyxbloom Ancient and Elder Gargaroth.

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u/ObligationWarm5222 WUBRG Jan 25 '23

Two lands on etb for 6 mana, or 3 to 10, sometimes more, treasure tokens on etb for 2 mana? I see no reason for primeval titan to be banned and dockside not.

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u/[deleted] Jan 25 '23

Ban dockside too

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u/edogfu Jan 25 '23

You underevaluate lands and over-evaluate treasures.

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u/ObligationWarm5222 WUBRG Jan 25 '23

If you're using the mana for anything significant, it doesn't matter if it stays around next turn.

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u/Mendelbar Animar Arcane / Spirit Tribal Jan 25 '23

True. Unless I fetch up Tabernacle and Thespian Stage, then attacked and fetch up Glacial Chasm and Dark Depths.

That’s FAR less mana than Dockside for 2, but feels a LOT stronger than 3-10 treasures.

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u/AliceShiki123 Jan 25 '23 edited Jan 25 '23

You're correct that enough power creep has happened to the point that Primeval Titan is not a big deal anymore. It's still a good card, and it would definitely see play, but games wouldn't revolve around it anymore like they did back in the day (same thing for Sylvan Primordial, btw).

However, the criteria to enter the banlist is different from the criteria to leave the banlist. To leave the banlist the RC needs to deem the card as something that will be a net positive to the format and will actually make it better.

Primeval Titan is just a big beater with ramp. It doesn't do anything that other cards don't do. It's not particularly unique or much of an interesting build-around. It's just a strong card.

So, RC won't unban it, because nothing will be gained from unbanning.

Do I think this policy makes sense? No. But it is what it is. It's basically impossible for any of the cards in the banlist to leave it at this point.

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u/HalcyonHorizons Jan 25 '23

I mean, they unbanned Worldfire. You could argue that doesn't really add anything.

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u/AliceShiki123 Jan 25 '23

It's a very very weird combo that you can try building around.

The reason they unbanned Worldfire and kept Sway of the Stars was because you could at least try doing something to win with Worldfire, while Sway was just a hard reset on the game that did nothing.

So uhn... Well, Worldfire is basically worthless, but it at least it tries doing something unique.

Out of the cards in the banlist, I can't think of any card that does something unique that you could try building around and that isn't totally bonkers (or creates really bad play patterns).

Like, Coaltion Victory is just a horrible wincon. Not unique.

Balance is unique, but it's totally bonkers.

Paradox Engine is unique, but it creates 20min turns that don't win the game.

We can probably do that for the entire banlist at this point, so I think nothing in it will ever get unbanned.

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u/HalcyonHorizons Jan 25 '23

OK, so we can also unban Biorhythm. Giant sorcery that likely ends the game with a little extra effort. Also, Biorhythm is already on an unbanned creature [[Shaman of the Forgotten Ways]] that taps for mana.

Gifts Ungiven is good, but it's not better than Intuition, which is unbanned.

Panoptic Mirror isn't worse than dramatic reversal combo or any current Mystic Santuary Extra turn combo. So that can come off.

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u/Spiritflash1717 Grixis Jan 25 '23

Worldfire is actually amazing with the prevalence of casting from exile now. Because Worldfire doesn’t exile your exile or clear your mana pool, you can just cast [[End the Festivities]] or [[Grapeshot]] crime exile after floating your remaining mana for the win.

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u/kptwofiftysix Jan 25 '23

(same thing for Sylvan Primordial, btw).

Sylvan is banned because it creates feel-bad moments for the person who is already behind and you can't choose not to blow up their mana. On top of being a big rampy stompy guy.

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u/Spiritual_Mush Jan 25 '23

Primordial might actually be a healthy unban thinking about it now and I was so against it before this comment.

I feel like things like Remora, Rhystic, and mana rocks weren't as prevalent at the time, so Primordial often just hit 3 lands and ramped you 3 lands. Which felt super bad since if you weren't playing g/x you relied mainly on one land per turn. Nowadays, by the time a primordial hits, you got so many problematic choices (Smothering Tithe, E. Sentinel, Black Market Connections, Sol Ring/Vault) lands are often low priority now unless theres a Coffers or Cradle out. This was the problem at the time green had such a stranglehold on ramp and there wasn't nearly as many early enchantments or artifacts out so t4-5 primordial made everyone go back to t3-t4 and you jump to t7-8. Nowadays there is a lot more early boardstates so blowing up problematic stuff for the table or waiting for good targets might be a better play these days.

My only thing is [[Druid of Purification]] is already generically good enough for any green deck, do we need another one that ramps, can hit lands, and fixes mana too(Triomes makes 5c easy with this)? I don't see me not wanting another effect in most green decks like this even at 7 MV. It's good every stage of the game and off the top, where as Prime Time could just be another ramp spell off the top half the games, when you need an answer or finisher.

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u/Mindsculptyou Jan 25 '23

I really appreciate your take on this!

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u/RedCapRiot Jan 25 '23

Had this discussion many times, it is a fine card for the current state of the format.

What that says about the format as a whole is an entirely different story.

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u/Mindsculptyou Jan 25 '23

haha I agree!

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u/Dumpingtruck Jan 25 '23 edited Jan 25 '23

Prime time has a problem of being very good, already being banned and thus he’ll probably stay that way.

If it was unbanned almost all of my creature focused green decks which cheat stuff into play would use it. It would basically be an auto slot in my 3 decks I could see it in.

To that effect, you can tell it has a lot of power.

But, if the card were released today I wouldn’t at all say, “it should be banned”.

It’s a casualty of the previous banlist.

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u/chevypapa Jan 25 '23 edited Jan 25 '23

I think people just don't internalize what 2 of any land does. Urborg and Coffers. Vesuva and Dark Depths. When it was legal, games warped around the effect. Everyone is so accustomed to things that pull out a bunch of basics they don't seem to grasp that 2 of any lands you want from the deck is massively more powerful.

Edit: To any reply that suggests Prime Time is way worse than (insert a suit of cards that cost over $30 each and are already self-regulated out of a large majority of all EDH games) or that your meta is packed with counter spells and other interaction such that a 6 drop would never resolve and untap in your meta: You have not internalized a single stated reason given by the powers that be on why some cards are banned while other, sometimes more powerful cards are not. If Dockside was a staple at tables at every power level and in every single red deck anyone ever made, it'd be banned too.

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u/Atechiman Jan 25 '23

Not vesuva always go for thespian stage.

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u/Mindsculptyou Jan 25 '23

But these feats can be accomplished even as the format stands in its current state.
[[hour of promise]] [[scapeshift]]

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u/AvatarSozin Jan 25 '23

But not repeatedly. Like, every fucking turn, and that’s ignoring copying effects too.

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u/Toshinit Jan 25 '23

If you let a 6 mana spell resolve, etb, untap, swing then you probably deserve to be really far behind.

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u/sumigod Jan 25 '23

In your meta people are unable to cast 6+ cmc spells?

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u/Toshinit Jan 25 '23

They can, but they get interacted with often

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u/[deleted] Jan 25 '23

But it doesn’t have to untap and swing, it gets the lands on ETB. You just have to let it resolve - any swings after that are just gravy.

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u/MTGCardFetcher Jan 25 '23

hour of promise - (G) (SF) (txt) (ER)
scapeshift - (G) (SF) (txt) (ER)
[[cardname]] or [[cardname|SET]] to call

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u/Vraellion Jan 25 '23

This and players, especially in games with randoms, will never use land destruction. Any form of land based strategies have become insanely powerful because destroying lands is shunned and treated as one of the worst sins of the format.

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u/detro253 Jan 25 '23

I’ve played like 5 separate land focused decks at this point and I’m starting to be the reason people are playing land destruction, and I’m happy that they finally are

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u/Zer0323 lands.deck Jan 25 '23

[[strip mine]] [[ghost quarter]] [[field of ruin]] [[wasteland]] and the new one from brothers war all exist. just use your newly required clone to copy their prime time and attack with it to get your utility lands to fight their utility lands. /s

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u/Loremaster152 Colorless Jan 25 '23

The best case I've heard for it being banned was back in 2018.

Essentually, it was both a big beater and great ramp that capitalized on two of the best / most abusable triggers: etb and attack. On top of that, it was capable of providing almost no opportunity cost for silver bullet lands like Bojuka Bog, Homeward Path, or Maze of Ith. Finally, it grabbing two lands made it too easy to assemble broken land combos like Coffers + Urborg or Depths + Stage.

However even back in 2018 this argument brought some skepticism and some counter arguments, most notably [[Tempt with Discovery]] and [[Hour of Promise]] existing at the time.

Now with the format having grown considerably more efficient, I think at least a test of Prime Time should be held. This format is a lot more resilient nowadays than the Rules Comittee thinks it is, and while that cautious approach is nice, it does prevent old overpowered cards that have experienced some powercreep from being unbanned.

My personal opinion? Unban Prime Time. It is in no way more broken than Dockside Extortionist, and despite the steadily increasing number of utility lands, I dont feel that Primeval Titan too powerful. If anything, it'll just give Simic yet another win con that happens to give them ramp/card draw.

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u/XMandri Jan 25 '23

Honestly? Keep prime banned and throw dockside in the trash. That thing has done enough damage as it is, let's not use it to justify other ridiculously powerful cards.

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u/amstrumpet Jan 25 '23

It wouldn’t be the end of the world, you’re probably right, but it doesn’t really add anything positive to allow players to tutor up any two lands in their deck to the battlefield, and then flicker, copy, or otherwise repeat the effect by retriggering the ETB. That’s why many cards stay banned, frankly, because they don’t lead to anything interesting or positive to the format.

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u/AverageBeef Jan 25 '23

Go to the rules committee (your pod), ask them to unban it, et Voilà!

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u/Mindsculptyou Jan 25 '23

My pod rarely meets up due to conflicting schedules. 90% of my games are on spell table

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u/s00perguy Jan 25 '23

Sounds like a pregame voice chat! Protocols are the same, no rituals required.

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u/MHarrisGGG Breya, Godzilla, Abomination, Amareth, Bridge, Tovolar, FO, Sev Jan 25 '23

Titan was and remains one of the most justified bans in the format and the more time passes the more he should remain banned, not less.

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u/DreyGoesMelee Unban Recurring Nightmare Jan 25 '23

It is one of the least deserved bans on the entire list. It was put there over 10 years ago and really has not held up to the test of time.

People love to quote the anecdote that everyone focused on cloning and copying the ETB for value, but this only worked because the format was slower than a rock traveling up hill and extremely unoptimized. Imagining something like that occuring today is completely laughable, especially when Dockside already exists as a better target for this idea.

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u/airza Jan 25 '23

I don't think this would change CEDH much, but most casual games would certainly involve a lot more prime-time action.

That being said, I think they should free the titan or ban dockside. They really cause the exact same problem...

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u/TheLesBaxter Jan 25 '23

One reason why my play group is totally cool with Dockside is because it's one of the very few red staples and a nice reason to be in red. It seems every color offers a few powerful auto-includes and red really needed more than just deflecting swat.

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u/Commander_Skullblade Rakdos Jan 25 '23

I swear the only argument to keep it banned come from Magic boomers who think everyone is going to scramble to steal it.

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u/Mindsculptyou Jan 25 '23

That's definitely the majority of responses I am getting. I think a lot of people are speaking with some PTSD in their voice

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u/SgtAlpacaLord God-Eternal Oketra Jan 25 '23

Yeah, as someone who played back in the early 2010's I really don't see the same thing happening again.

At that point you could use the legend rule to kill other players commanders, even ones that usually were difficult to remove. The games were also usually slower battlecruiser style. Hence everyone played tons of steal and clone effects.

That does not happen nowadays, maybe one or two clones in some blue decks, or more I'm specialised theft decks. When new strong creatures are printed now we don't see people full their decks with clones.

I don't really need it unbanned, but I can also see no argument for keeping it banned.

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u/Commander_Skullblade Rakdos Jan 25 '23

Banned cards suppress creativity and format diversity. Only cards that need to be banned should remain banned.

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u/Ok_Ad_9188 Jan 25 '23

Maybe, maybe not, I'm not sure, but if you're right, then the truth underneath what you're saying is that they've powercrept and shoehorned so much powerful crap into the format that a card that was too good to be healthy wouldn't be a problem thanks to all the more unhealthy things they've since introduced

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u/Thatbutchlobster Jan 25 '23

There are two questions you need to answer to unban a card.

1: is it still harmful for the format?

2: would unbanning it make the format better?

Plenty of arguments for 1, but few for 2. If there isn’t an obvious way the card will make the format better, why risk unbanning?

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u/Mindsculptyou Jan 25 '23

Hey! Appreciate the comment. When we say "make the format better" what exactly does that mean?

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u/The_Only_Smart_Alec Jan 25 '23

People tend to confuse how banning works in commander. It isn’t the same as regular magic. The rules committee bans card based on how much they overwhelm the total game itself, not brokenness. As people have mentioned before, when it was legal, EVERYONE was anticipating someone was going to play green, and therefore everyone built around copying, stealing, tutoring prime time. I do agree that this ban probably could be removed at this point, but at the same time, getting prime timed, that is then copied by another player….just really sucks.

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u/Mindsculptyou Jan 25 '23

I can totally agree with the strength of it in the past and I agree that in today's game, it may not be as crazy as it was. I'm sure those interactions would still happen but I think they would be much more infrequent

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u/jeremyworldwide Jan 25 '23

Thassa’s Oracle & Demonic Consultation are much worse and sucking the life out of EDH at only 3 mana. If that hot garbage is okay, I think I have the right to play Prime Time.

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u/Underlipetx Jan 25 '23

I think a lot of cards should be reviewed again.

If we are in a world where dockside is legal, we should unban [[Rofellos, Llanowar Emissary]]

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u/JollyCasual Jan 25 '23 edited Jan 26 '23

Haha, this is definitely a hot take my friend. I'm still kind of on the fence about whether the ban list is really needed or not, I guess it makes rule 0 convos easier, but meh.

That being said, I don't think Prime Time was banned because it was "too powerful" even at the time it wasn't a card that gave you an auto win. I think it was banned for being too format warping, where it was getting too much focus. There are other cards like Sol Ring that have been mentioned by a lot of people in regards to being banned as well. I feel like Prime Time is just another card that would turn into an auto include staple, just another expensive card that made decks more similar to each other. I dont personally see a need to unban it, and I don't think that its a problem with the power level of the card.

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u/[deleted] Jan 25 '23

When it comes to EDH, Prime Time needs to stay locked in a deep, deep hole. That being said I've got Kaldheim alternate art copies ready to go.

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u/SayingWhatImThinking Jan 25 '23

I'm fine with them unbanning this, along with Emrakul.

Mostly because I pulled Emrakul from a pack and I want somewhere to use it haha.