The dust hasn’t settled after two major cards, Fires of Invention and Agent of Treachery, were kicked out of Standard and now another one joins. Winona, Joiner of Forces will remain in Standard but is no longer legal to play in Historic.
Right after the first major banning, this major announcement has at least three implications.
First, obviously Winota couldn’t be used in Historic decks anymore. In a statement, Wizards of the Coast claimed they have been monitoring the format very closely - a task made easier by the fact that it is digital-only and they quite literally have all the data.
Second, the suspension kicks in immediately. This is a new concept, as Wizards have always made sure to provide players with a week’s notice before taking away their cards. Their justification is, again, that the format is digital-only, so they can be quick to act in extreme cases such as this one. In their evaluation, Winona is way too dominant in the current Historic metagame that she needed to be removed immediately. Wizards disclosed that future Historic suspensions could also take effect immediately if the card is too powerful. Bannings in other formats will continue to honor the one-week-notice policy.
Third, Winota will be gone from Historic, but remain playable in Standard. This means that no Wildcards will be provided as compensation and she will continue to drop from booster packs and other rewards. This sucks for Historic-only players, but hey, that’s a small price to pay when you have an extended card pool and the luxury of a non-rotating format.
Is she really that bad? Probably. One thing is certain - now that three of the top-performing cards are gone, the metagame will have to shuffle significantly.
Hey, Wizards, you seem to be trigger-happy lately. Don’t you touch our hippo!