Reflection of Kiki-Jiki | Kamigawa: Neon Dynasty
6, Jun, 24

MTG Arena Banlist 2024 - June 2024

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The MTG Arena banlist doesn’t change often, but when it does, it’s always a big deal. After all, not only do bans have format-warping consequences, but they also inherently increase confusion. Thanks to this, Wizards of the Coast doesn’t ban cards lightly, but it does happen. Since 2023, MTG bans now happen on a mostly fixed schedule.

Thanks to this schedule, we know the next MTG ban announcement will take place on June 24th, 2024.

Thankfully, on MTG Arena, bans are both easy to keep track of and provide compensation. If you own a card that gets banned in any format, you’ll receive an equal amount of Wildcards for your trouble. Unfortunately, Wildcards are not awarded when a card is rebalanced in Historic or Alchemy.

Here is everything you need to know about each format’s banlist on MTG Arena.

MTG Arena Banlist Standard

The Meathook Massacre | Innistrad: Midnight Hunt
The Meathook Massacre | Innistrad: Midnight Hunt

For better or worse, the Standard banlist on MTG Arena is a lot bigger than usual right now. Typically, Wizards will do what they can to avoid bans in this format, but recently they have had no choice. In order to keep the format feeling fresh and exciting, four cards exist on the Standard banlist.

The cards currently banned in Standard on MTG Arena are as follows:

  • The Meathook Massacre
  • Fable of the Mirror-Breaker // Reflection of Kiki-Jiki
  • Invoke Despair
  • Reckoner Bankbuster

While four cards exist on the Standard banlist for now, this will be changing soon. On July 30th, Standard will rotate on MTG Arena, pushing out all the cards currently on the banlist. This will be the case, provided that nothing is banned in the interim.

For better or worse, the next MTG ban announcement on June 24th is said to be Standard-focused. Due to this, it seems that Wizards may be banning some cards ahead of rotation on the 30th. Right now, there’s no telling what cards, if any, will be banned in this upcoming announcement.

MTG Arena Banlist Historic

Ragavan, Nimble Pilferer
Ragavan, Nimble Pilferer | March of the Machine

Recently, Wizards of the Coast has been rather aggressive with the Historic banlist on MTG Arena. This change in philosophy has followed the release of multiple Bonus Sheets and the release of Timeless. Rather than simply being MTG Arena’s only Eternal format, Historic is now forcibly carving out its own identity.

Most recently, Wizards of the Coast has pre-banned 18 cards from Modern Horizons 3 to keep Historic feeling like itself. In this major ban wave, Wizards pre-banned ten free spells, alongside reaffirming Fetch Lands are still banned. Explaining this decision, Wizards stated they must be careful of spells that can be cast for free as they’re too fast for Historic.

The cards currently banned in Standard on MTG Arena are as follows:

  • Agent of Treachery
  • Blood Moon
  • Bloodstained Mire
  • Brainstorm
  • Channel
  • Counterspell
  • Dark Ritual
  • Demonic Tutor
  • Field of the Dead
  • Flooded Strand
  • Intruder Alarm
  • Land Tax
  • Lightning Bolt
  • Memory Lapse
  • Natural Order
  • Necropotence
  • Nexus of Fate
  • Oko, Thief of Crowns
  • Once Upon a Time
  • Polluted Delta
  • Ragavan, Nimble Pilferer
  • Show and Tell
  • Sneak Attack
  • Spreading Seas
  • Swords to Plowshares
  • Thassa’s Oracle
  • Tibalt’s Trickery
  • Time Warp
  • Uro, Titan of Nature’s Wrath
  • Veil of Summer
  • Windswept Heath
  • Wilderness Reclamation
  • Wooded Foothills

Following the release of Modern Horizons 3 on June 11th, the following cards will join the Historic Banlist on MTG Arena:

  • Harbinger of the Seas
  • Winter Moon
  • Endurance
  • Fury
  • Grief
  • Subtlety
  • Solitude
  • Flare of Fortitude
  • Flare of Denial
  • Flare of Malice
  • Flare of Duplication
  • Flare of Cultivation

MTG Arena Banlist Timeless

Tibalt's Trickery | Kaldheim
Tibalt’s Trickery | Kaldheim

First things first, currently, there is no Banlist for the new Timeless format on MTG Arena. Instead, Timeless has a Restricted List, just like the Vintage format on paper. When a card is on the Restricted List for a format, only one copy can be used in the main deck and sideboard combined. 

Currently, only three cards are on the Timeless Restricted List. These cards have been restricted from the format’s inception, following a series of experimental events. Currently, it is unclear when more cards will be added to the Timeless Restricted List.

Here are all the cards on the Timeless Restricted List.

  • Channel
  • Demonic Tutor
  • Tibalt’s Trickery

When a card is added to the Timeless Restricted List, players will be given compensation from Wizards. As a note, however, players will receive wildcards for each copy of the card in their collection greater than one. For example, “if a player owns four copies of a card that is added to the restricted list, the player will receive three wildcards for that change.”

MTG Arena Banlist Explorer

Lurrus of the Dream Den | Ikoria: Lair of Behemoths
Lurrus of the Dream Den | Ikoria: Lair of Behemoths

While the end goal for Explorer is to be identical to Pioneer, currently, not every Pioneer-legal card is on MTG Arena. As a result of this, the Explorer format has its own metagame and banlist separate from the main format. That being said, however, the two banlists share several similarities with one another. 

Once Explorer has all the same cards as Pioneer, the two formats’ banlists will likely be identical. It’s possible, in fact, that Wizards will do away with Explorer entirely. Instead, the format may just be known as Pioneer across paper, Magic Online, and MTG Arena. 

Here is the entire banlist for the Explorer format on MTG Arena. 

  • Expressive Iteration
  • Field of the Dead
  • Geological Appraiser
  • Karn, the Great Creator
  • Kethis, the Hidden Hand
  • Leyline of Abundance
  • Lurrus of the Dream-Den
  • Nexus of Fate
  • Oko, Thief of Crowns
  • Once Upon a Time
  • Teferi, Time Raveler
  • Tibalt’s Trickery
  • Underworld Breach
  • Uro, Titan of Nature’s Wrath
  • Veil of Summer
  • Wilderness Reclamation
  • Winota, Joiner of Forces

MTG Arena Banlist Brawl

Gideon's Intervention | Amonkhet
Gideon’s Intervention | Amonkhet

As MTG Arena’s alternative to Commander, for now, Brawl has a vast card pool for players to utilize. Similarly to Commander, this means there are a number of powerful, nearly problematic, cards at players’ disposal. Despite the litany of powerful cards available, the Brawl banlist is surprisingly short. This is due to Wizards primarily only banning cards that shut down Commanders.

Here is the banlist for the Brawl format on MTG Arena right now:

  • Runed Halo
  • Gideon’s Intervention
  • Meddling Mage
  • Pithing Needle

Following the release of Modern Horizons 3 on June 11th, the following card will join the Brawl banlist:

  • Disruptor Flute

MTG Arena Banlist Standard Brawl

Pithing Needle | Innistrad: Midnight Hunt
Pithing Needle | Innistrad: Midnight Hunt

Despite it being a lot of fun, the Standard Brawl format is sadly not a popular one. That being said, however, it still occasionally receives love from Wizards of the Coast. Granted, occasionally is the important word there, as there is only one card banned in Standard Brawl at the moment.

When a card is banned in Standard Brawl, it cannot be used in either your deck or used as your deck’s Commander, where applicable. 

Here is the entire banlist for the Standard Brawl format on MTG Arena. 

  • Pithing Needle

As an important note, the regular Standard banlist does not apply to Standard Brawl. Subsequently, any card in a Standard-legal set that is not listed here is legal. That said, when Standard rotates on June 30th, 2024, Pithing Needle will rotate out of Standard Brawl.

MTG Arena Banlist Alchemy

Reflection of Kiki-Jiki | Kamigawa: Neon Dynasty
Reflection of Kiki-Jiki | Kamigawa: Neon Dynasty

Currently, no cards are banned in the Alchemy format on MTG Arena.

In theory, the Alchemy format should never have bans, as over or underpowered cards should be rebalanced instead. While this is Wizards of the Coast’s intention, development resources can keep this from happening. 

Previously, Wizards has had to ban Grinning Ignus and Fable of the Mirror-Breaker as temporary solutions. These cards remained banned until they rotated out of the format.

The Next MTG Bans

Sword of Once and Future | March of the Machine
Sword of Once and Future | March of the Machine

As we mentioned at the beginning of this article, the MTG Arena banlist now changes on a fixed schedule. Once per year, and following the release of each set, Wizards of the Coast has assigned a window to make ban changes, if needed. Alongside this loose calendar, Wizards confirms the exact date for the next bans whenever making a ban announcement.

Currently, the next ban announcement is scheduled to take place on June 24th, 2024.

According to Wizards of the Coast, the focus of the next ban announcement will be Standard. Despite this announcement, no cards in the Standard format are in dire need of a banning right now. This may imply that Bloomburrow contains a card or two which could create an unintentionally broken combo.

Ultimately, we won’t know what will be banned until the announcement takes place, so we’ll just have to wait for now.

Read More: Wizards Bans 56 Massively Controversial MTG Cards

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