An emergency ban has been made regarding the Pokemon TCG!
Those who are playing in the Expanded format may have plenty to rejoice about. That is because Pokemon has issued an emergency update to their Quarterly Report. Lusamine and Delinquent have been banned in the Expanded format.
Pokemon normally does a Quarterly Report two weeks before a set is release in the United States. During this report they issue any bans to cards to keep the Standard and Expanded formats healthy. In the last Quarterly Report, Pokemon had banned Maxie’s Hidden Ball Trick and Unown DAMAGE. This was due to creating a game state that prevents the opponent from playing the game in the first turn.
That Quarterly Report has now been updated to include Lusamine (Crimson Invasion/Ultra Prism) and Delinquent (BREAKpoint).
Below is what Pokemon had to say about each card being banned.
- A popular combo with Red Card, Delinquent, and Peeking Red Card created a lot of situations where one player essentially lost the game before taking their first turn. When this kind of strategy can be executed successfully a high percentage of the time and is effective, it creates an unhealthy environment.
- Lusamine allows for an infinite cycle of Supporter cards because it can get back a different Lusamine plus another Supporter card. This has created several strategies that negatively affect the Expanded format. It can also create stalemate situations where neither player is able to win.
Delinquent was used in a popular combo that involves Red Card and Peeking Red Card. Players would use Red Card in their first turn to limit their opponent hand to four cards. They would then set down a Stadium card which will allow them to play Delinquent. That will force their opponent to discard three cards from their opponent’s four cards. Once their opponent has only one card in their hand, the player can play Peeking Red Card. That will allow them to look at their opponent’s hand to determine if the one card in their hand is any threat to them. If it is then that card will be shuffle back into their opponent’s deck for a card that could be useless.
This combo would effectively leave your opponent with no options early in the game. Eventually your opponent will have no way to mount an attack or set up.
Lusamine would allow players to pull out Supporters from their Discard. This would also include grabbing Lusamine plus another Supporter. That way the player can reach into their Discard as many times as they want to grab cards that will disrupt their opponent from playing the game. If done correctly then it will create a stalemate between the two players until the opponent is mill out of cards from their deck or neither player wins. Thus, removing a win condition on the player who isn’t using Lusamine.
Both Delinquent and Lusamine are combos that Zoroark decks have been using. Players who play the Expanded format have been asking for cards that Zoroark decks abuse to be banned. The most highly wanted cards that were being requested for a ban was Delinquent and Lusamine. Pokemon is hoping that by banning these card will create a shake up in Expanded to make a much more balance format. Only time will tell if this will work.
Good luck to those playing in Expanded and at the Oceanic International Championships!