The Global Operations Team’s Card Committee is excited to present some new additions to the Standard Format’s restricted list, which will come into effect on Friday, July 8, 2022!
This update is smaller than our usual fare, as we wanted to issue a sort of “meta hotfix” in time for Regional season. And the one thing that became exceedingly clear after Worlds was that something needed to be done to curb Greyjoy’s extreme efficiency.
However, as we still expect to issue another update in the near future – likely September – we had two options. We could either take a light hand with Greyjoy, with the knowledge that we could ramp things up in the next update; or we could take a much sterner hand, with the knowledge that we could back off a bit if it proved to be too much. After weighing the pros and cons of each approach, we eventually decided on the former.
Traditionally, Greyjoy as a faction has a lot of big power cards but frequently has lacked the draw needed to consistently find and combine those tools. We don’t necessarily want to change their identity too much – and to that end, rather than specifically targeting their bombs, we decided to restrict two of their most powerful draw options. As such, the first two cards added to the Restricted List in this update are Asha Greyjoy (KM), and Alannys Greyjoy (CoS). We hope that by making players choose between those options we can slow down their efficiency.
Since hitting draw can only do so much, however, we wanted to add a third card as well, one that would potentially interfere with Greyjoy’s efficiency in another way. After much discussion, we landed on Raiding Longship. This card not only helps win challenges – the most straightforward way of winning the game – it also acts as an enabler of some of Greyjoy’s most powerful effects, such as We Do Not Sow and Maiden’s Bane. While it is somewhat balanced by requiring you to go first, and can only target characters without attachments, we felt these measures were not enough to balance out its powerful ability – especially with the slow release of additional tools for Greyjoy to inflate its initiative value, making it easier than ever for them to go first.
We are also making one minor tweak to the Lannister/Kraken Shadows list. While the deck has not been terribly popular recently, we have noticed a trend that we want to get ahead of.
Several updates ago, we experimented with removing the old pod of Nightflyer and Bowels of Casterly Rock, and instead podding Nightflyer with Cersei Lannister (DitD). The idea was to allow the deck its income but to force it to choose between hand destruction and location destruction. In practice, however, the repeated income from Bowels used to fuel Nightflyer’s effect has reasserted itself as the big issue with the deck. We are therefore simply reversing this decision – repealing the NF/Cersei pod, and reinstating the NF/Bowels pod.
As always, the Card Committee will watch the results of these decisions closely, with a mind towards maintaining a healthy, fun, and diverse meta that provides a wealth of effective, competitive options, and we welcome your feedback.
Good luck, have fun,
The Card Committee