Scheduled Banned and Restricted Announcement

25th Mar 2024 Bryan Gottlieb

Classic Constructed

The following changes to Classic Constructed are effective from Monday, March 25th, 2024:

  • Berserk is banned.
  • Crown of Seeds is banned.

Finally, a litmus test to see who actually reads these things, and who gets all of their news from Twitter.

In a vacuum, a Berserk ban looks somewhat absurd. Not to discount a sterling performance from Corey Frascati-Robinson who took Berserk Rhinar to a Top 4 finish in a Philadelphia PTI event, but Berserk sightings have been quite rare in Classic Constructed since the start of the Heavy Hitters metagame. However, Berserk has eaten up a tremendous amount of development time since it first appeared back in Dynasty.

Going into Heavy Hitters, we made a decision that we were not going to allow Berserk to shape our approach to development when it came to Kayo, Armed and Dangerous. While we did validation on the archetype to make sure it didn’t just break the game in half, we knew we weren’t going to change cards and numbers to make Berserk 100% safe. If things went wrong, we would just ban Berserk—possibly even preemptively.

Ultimately, we came to the same conclusion as the community—Berserk Kayo appeared to be a trap, and the best way to build the hero was as an efficient aggro deck, as we saw claim four Top 8 slots at Pro Tour: Los Angeles over the past weekend. We were happy to let Berserk Kayo (or maybe even a Rhinar deck or two) go forth into the world and see some play where the metagame called for it, or let Berserk function as a potential sideboard option for difficult matchups.

So, what has changed?

The very next time we sat down to design Brute cards we found ourselves facing the same conundrum, and proceeded with the same approach. This go around, we found ourselves faced with a Berserk deck which was both far stronger than previous iterations and quite miserable to play against.

At some point, you just have to admit certain cards are mistakes. Berserk falls into that category. If it ever achieves what it sets out to do, it reduces Flesh and Blood to a game of "reveal the top card of my deck until we see if my opponent is dead". There is simply no reason to create further design constraints on the Brute class to enable Berserk to exist. We can just move on. Preemptive banning allows us to look out for players and prevent them from buying into a deck that has a high eventual likelihood of getting banned.

Without going into details with the same specificity, much of the above can be applied to Crown of Seeds. Many of us lived through the Oldhim meta. We were spared from the control Briar meta perhaps only by her ascension to Living Legend. We do not need to go down this road again, and it is not beneficial to be forced to shape future Earth heroes around the existence of Crown of Seeds.

Despite the fact that no Classic Constructed legal heroes can currently play Crown of Seeds, we are taking this opportunity to move Crown of Seeds to the banned list, cementing its current and future home as the Living Legend format.


The following changes to Blitz are effective from Monday, March 25th, 2024:

  • Berserk is banned.

The scenarios described around Berserk and Crown of Seeds in Classic Constructed are just as present, if not more so, in the Blitz format. For that reason, Berserk is also being banned in Blitz effectively immediately, and advanced notice is being given that Crown of Seeds will be included on the next Banned and Restricted Announcement (scheduled for Monday, July 8th, 2024).

The reason for the deferred banning of Crown of Seeds in Blitz, is unlike Classic Constructed, it is currently a legally playable card in Briar decks, and seemingly not currently problematic. However, as the Blitz card pool evolves across 2024, we believe the format will benefit from the removal of Crown of Seeds, and we want players to have as much heads up as possible about that imminent change.

Living Legend

After the results of the Battle Hardened at Pro Tour: Los Angeles, it is safe to say Starvo has been brought back to the field, garnering zero Top 8 slots this go around. We want to give the format some time to adapt to a reduced influence from Starvo, and see what happens with a new group of heroes sharing the mantle of format leader.

While restrictions targeting overperforming heroes or unrestrictions empowering other heroes may be the right call come the next Banned and Restricted Announcement, it feels premature to make further changes at this juncture.

Pro Quest Living Legend Points Adjustment

Pro Quest: Amsterdam winning heroes will claim three Living Legend points per event win.

Next Scheduled Banned and Restricted Announcement

The next Banned and Restricted Announcement will be on Monday, July 8th, 2024.