8, Aug, 23

What Is Legacy In Magic: The Gathering?

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Article at a Glance

What is Legacy in Magic: The Gathering? It’s a question players who’ve been around in the MTG space for a little while will all eventually end up asking, because while Modern might have once seemed like something you can move into from Standard, Legacy is something else entirely.

Well, it’s a question that’s got a pretty simple answer, so we’re going to dig into what the format is and what the banned cards are below. All you have to do is keep reading.

What is Legacy in Magic: The Gathering?


Legacy is a constructed format with a minimum of sixty card decks, up to fifteen cards in your sideboard, and the usual rules of no more than four of any single card in your deck outside of Basic Lands and Snow Lands.

Legacy is probably the second-most expensive format in MTG, with Vintage taking the top spot there. Well – kind of.

Legacy is, by far, the second most expensive format to get into, but if you plan on playing MTG for the long haul, it is likely to become the cheapest format. This is because, while buying into the format requires a small fortune, not much changes otherwise. Once you grab your expensive staples, you don’t need much else to play Legacy. There isn’t much risk of a new Modern Horizons set completely flipping the format on its head. You don’t need to buy a whole new deck every once-in-a-while to keep up. Of the non-rotating formats, this one rotates the least.

That said, Legacy is expensive to get into for a few reasons, but the main one is simply that it’s a format that contains cards from every set in MTG ever.

That’s not just those sets that were in Standard either, but ones that come from expansions and special sets like Commander decks and Conspiracy. This makes it an incredibly diverse format in theory, and if you want to brew a deck, you have a lot of freedom to do so aside from the banned list.

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What cards are banned in Legacy?


The banned list in Legacy is pretty lengthy because of the huge selection of cards available. You can look at it below:

  • Ancestral Recall
  • Arcum’s Astrolabe
  • Balance
  • Bazaar of Baghdad
  • Black Lotus
  • Channel
  • Chaos Orb
  • Deathrite Shaman
  • Demonic Consultation
  • Demonic Tutor
  • Dig Through Time
  • Dreadhorde Arcanist
  • Earthcraft
  • Expressive Iteration
  • Falling Star
  • Fastbond
  • Flash
  • Frantic Search
  • Gitaxian Probe
  • Goblin Recruiter
  • Gush
  • Hermit Druid
  • Imperial Seal
  • Library of Alexandria
  • Lurrus of the Dream-Den
  • Mana Crypt
  • Mana Drain
  • Mana Vault
  • Memory Jar
  • Mental Misstep
  • Mind Twist
  • Mishra’s Workshop
  • Mox Emerald
  • Mox Jet
  • Mox Pearl
  • Mox Ruby
  • Mox Sapphire
  • Mystical Tutor
  • Necropotence
  • Oath of Druids
  • Oko, Thief of Crowns
  • Ragavan, Nimble Pilferer
  • Sensei’s Divining Top
  • Shahrazad
  • Skullclamp
  • Sol Ring
  • Strip Mine
  • Survival of the Fittest
  • Time Vault
  • Time Walk
  • Timetwister
  • Tinker
  • Tolarian Academy
  • Treasure Cruise
  • Underworld Breach
  • Vampiric Tutor
  • Wheel of Fortune
  • White Plume Adventurer
  • Windfall
  • Wrenn and Six
  • Yawgmoth’s Bargain
  • Yawgmoth’s Will
  • Zirda, the Dawnwaker

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Legacy’s Recent Banlist Changes

Since this article was last updated (its been quite some time), three new cards have been added to the banlist, and one has been taken off. Ragavan, Nimble Pilferer‘s addition happened quite some time ago, so we won’t touch on that. Instead, let’s talk about Legacy’s most recent banning.

Expressive Iteration and White Plume Adventurer saw recent bannings thanks to two archetypes dominating the Legacy format not too long ago. White Plume Adventurer was the main villain, creating a hostile format where Mono White Initiative preyed on Izzet Delver, and Delver preyed on everything that could prey on Initiative.

Expressive Iteration was the nerf to Delver. Should the foil to Delver fall, that deck might become too good for in the Legacy format again. Many bans have been a result of Izzet Delver, and this is unlikely to be the last.

Otherwise, Mind’s Desire saw a recent unban a few days ago as of the writing of this section, and the format is already getting shaken up by it. Combo has been a bit weaker in recent times, so Wizards of the Coast unbanned the card to throw combo players a bone.

All of this is to hopefully say that even though Legacy is a nonrotating format, innovations quietly promote change, and the format continues to grow.

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