A tale of the future: The new Forbidden & Limited List

The latest [fll] will go into effect tomorrow, just after YCS Rimini concludes, and it’s bound to bring major changes to several Decks. Let’s take a look at the changes.

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Editor’s comment: Please note that the opinions expressed in this article are those of our writer, and may not necessarily reflect those of Konami Digital Entertainment B.V.. This article should not be viewed as “Konami’s justification of recent changes”, but rather as “a writer’s thoughts on how the changes will affect the top Decks in the future.”

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Newly Forbidden:

[pp keyboard] (from Limited)
[kaiser col] (from Unlimited)
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Newly Limited:

[ba cir] (from Semi-Limited)
[ehther] (from Unlimited)
[k dark] (from Unlimited)
[ma kir] (from Unlimited)
[beatrice] (from Unlimited)
[teleport] (from Semi-Limited)
[pantheism] (from Unlimited)
[pen call] (from Unlimited)
[stormforth] (from Unlimited)
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Newly Semi-limited:

[maxx] (from Unlimited)
[tkr] (from Limited)
[w mag] (from Limited)
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No longer Limited:

[ter] (from Limited)
[allure] (from Semi-Limited)
[sarco] (from Limited)
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We can see that this is a typical update in size, with a total of 17 changes. In order to discuss the changes, I will group them by each affected Deck and take a look at the impact the changes are likely to have.
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Monarch

Considered by many to be the big loser of this new [fll], Monarch Decks are affected by the Limitations of [ehther], [pantheism] and [stormforth], all of which have typically been included 3 times in recent Monarch Decklists. With this change, Monarch Decks lose valuable consistency and will have to risk unplayable hands much more often.
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Pendulum

Pendulum Decks, which often use both the Performapal and the Majespecter engine, have to play entirely without [pp keyboard] from now on, and can only run a single copy of the very powerful [ma kir]. The Limitation of [pen call] also weakens one of the many different ways this Deck generates card advantage. This reduces their consistency and makes them much less likely to overpower any field. Their general game plan, however, still works fine and they might just be around for the next format, even if they won’t be as strong as they were. The Metalfoes from [tdil] also fit nicely into the Pendulum framework and will bring a new form of this long-lasting Deck to life.
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Burning Abyss

With [ba cir] going from Semi-limited to Limited, Burning Abyss loses one notable effect that was used frequently to Special Summon more Monsters. The far greater impact, though, will be the Limitation of [beatrice], which is an important high-end Monster in the Deck and makes it much more sturdy when facing destruction effects. With only 1 copy allowed, this is a strategy that can no longer be used over and over again. The Deck’s general mechanics still work perfectly, though, and neither of the changes affect their key cards, which is why Burning Abyss is seen by many as the winner of this new [fll].
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Kozmo

This Deck loses 2 copies of its primary boss Monster and has to reduce its [teleport] count to just 1 copy. Several copies of [k dark] were often crucial for huge Kozmo turns, but since the Deck is able to reuse many of its resources and access most of its Deck through [k tincan], this change will not make the Deck completely unplayable and instead only reduce its consistency, which seems to be the common theme of this [fll] update.
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Anti Decks and Techs

[maxx] has been one of the most popular Tech choices in recent tournaments and many Duelists have been running them in their Main Deck for a while. With the abundance of Special Summons in the current metagame, [maxx] was able to force the opponent into a very awkward decision and Semi-limiting it will again reduce the consistency of Decks that can easily use it.
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On the other hand, easy access to [kaiser col] could completely shut down an opponent after a strong opening, making a comeback much harder and sealing games before they even really started. This kind of situation has always been undesirable and this change follows in the footsteps of cards like [oppression], allowing players to turn around games more often.
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[tkr] has fallen out of favour recently and is no longer the powerful lock card it once was, so we could be seeing the first part of a 2-step removal of [tkr] from the [fll].
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Others

[w mag] was part of a long forgotten Deck that has no relevance in the current metagame. It is most probably on its way to being completely Unlimited with the next update, but Wind-Up Decks are not likely to return even with access to additional [w mag].
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[sarco] was a key card in many combo Decks several formats ago, but the very high consistency of recent Deck archetypes makes generic search cards far less valuable, so even in its Unlimited state, [sarco] is unlikely to see any more play than it did in recent years.
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Finally, both [ter] and [allure] are now completing the second part of their typical 2-step removal from the [fll] after the loosening of their Limitations in the last update went well and didn’t bring back any toxic FTK Decks.
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Conclusion

The overarching theme of this [fll] update is a reduction of the consistency of the most dominant Decks in the current format. None of them become entirely unplayable, but some lose more consistency than others. Additionally, several cards are removed from the list in the typical 2 steps, bringing back consistency and power to old Decks that have been out of the format for a long time.

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