I was looking through Digital Mortal's interviews with the top players in the world and thinking through his question with regards to the banlist. It set me thinking upon the fact whether some cards should still be banned. As such, starting from this post, I will be discussing some of the cards on the banlist and evaluate their worthiness on the banlist.
Are these cards still guilty of their abilities to wreck havoc in the duelist world? Or, guilty....no more?
1) Sinister Serpent
Level 1/ Water/ Reptile/ 300/ 250
Effect: During your Standby Phase, if a "Sinister Serpent" exists in your Graveyard, you can return the "Sinister Serpent" to your hand.
This card, in my opinion, though seemingly harmless, should still remain banned for a couple more formats. Reason? Its too good a cost folder, and the ability to use this card as a cost folder once per turn makes several card inbalanced. Examples include raigeki break and phoenix wing wind blast, and the best card that can make use of this free cost folder is, of course, lightning vortex. These cards have their costs attached to them for a reason, they are unlike mystical space typhoon that restricts its own effect to the backrow.
Raigeki break and phoenix wing wind blast can target both the monster zone and the spell/trap zone, and the lone ability to target the monster zone (due to efforts to make out synchros/exceeds etc) should be enough justification to attach a cost upon the individual cards. Sinister Serpent, however, can make these cards costless. They are unlike cards such as offerings to the doom that requires you to skip your next draw phrase, dark hole which destroys monsters on both sides (though one can dispute that you can use it when you have no monsters) and dimensional prison which requires your opponent to attack you.
Lightning vortex is the card, if made costless, will be too good. It allows you to wipe out all face-up monsters on your opponent's side of the field (which is why raigeki is banned - although its worse than lightning vortex as it takes out face-down monsters as well).
In a format where hand advantage is extremely crucial to bringing out an OTK, cards that allow a player to reduce your opponent's field advantage while enabling you to maintain significant hand advantage should not be allowed to return to the game.
2) Magician Of Faith
Level 1/ Light/ Spellcaster/ 300/ 400
Effect: Flip: Add one spell card from your graveyard to your hand.
This card has always been regarded as being extremely broken as it allows you to recycle your dark hole, monster reborn and heavy storm by just flipping it up. However, that was during a time when effect veilers, inzectors, solemn warning and senseless OTKs did not exist.
Moreover, magician of faith's effect is a flip effect, ensuring that you would have to wait at least a turn for you to gain its effect, and in today's format, a turn could mean a lot as setting a card and ending means you can be subjected to it being destroyed by inzectors or simply being rushed by heiroglpyhs, making whatever spell card being returned to hand useless.
Furthermore, in today's format, effect veiler is also run in 2s or 3s. This essentially helps to cancel off the advantage of magician of faith as it is useless once its face-up on the field and having its effect negated.
Lastly, as discussed in Digital Mortal's blog interview, magician of faith helps to keep players on their toes. Nowadays, when cards like heavy storm have been used already, players will confidently set everything. However, if magician of faith returns to the game, there will be something there to keep their opponents on the lookout and not over-extend, making the situation more challenging instead of setting a trend whereby the clear-cut answer is to over-extend once the "power cards" have been used up.
Therefore, in my opinion, magician of faith is a card that can be released from the confinement that it has been in for so long.
Thats the end of the banlist discussion part 1, signing off.