I feel the real mechanical curveball is that these are essentially their own cards and it's hidden very well because of three factors
1) These are new cards, and there's nothing functionally similar to compare them to.
2) The Reserved List not allowing functional reprints making reverse comparison a seldom-thought process.
3) Everyone complaining about how this is handled (print-wise) is actually right because that affects the first two factors, but too much noise/focus on it is drowning out on the explanation process.
These cards are essentially the "Reserved List" versions of their own cards. Yes, they cited they can functionally reprint, but that has rules implications, you can now run 2 copies in the format, card names are different and so on. The Reserved List never had such a problem because they sealed the entire thing, and they thought it was a good idea to undo only one half of it. When they do the functional reprint in the future, it's like printing Twistertime
They're like P3K cards, except their direct reprintability is closer to the Reserved List than to P3K. We've seen the impact of direct reprints (Imperial Recruiter
) and the lack of it even with functional reprints (Three Visits
That's the most defining aspect, they will always be functionally they're their own card (with near Reserved List chances of a direct reprint), regardless of how many other functional reprints there are. Imagine if they did LotR and The One Ring is a functional Sol Ring
, the uproar will be insane, but the clarity is there, while these cards are "new" functionally so it's a lot easier to hide. Or just imagine these 5 cards are functional reprints of the 2011 face-Commanders, but now you can play 2.
My conclusion? We don't need to ban these cards, but we need a rule for cards like these (collaborations in limited-print-runs) that restricts them functionally. Let's say they functionally print a Negan as Marchesa in the future, you can either play Marchesa or Negan in your 100, but not both. We have to manually bind the cards to their in-universe equivalent the same way the Godzilla series did by themselves, because WotC themselves can't be bothered to.
I know the RC dislikes multiple lists, but I feel these must be defined clearly otherwise it'll affect all functional reprints within MTG itself, which I wouldn't think is fair.
Funny enough, there isn't anything for the RC to bind to at the moment, but I feel like it's a good pre-emptive lock in case WotC thinks it's a good idea to functionally print a second copy of our favorite borderline-broken cards (ring, crypt, rift, craterhoof?) in the name of collaborations.
Also, I feel like this is arguably the best way for the RC to not spit right in WotC's face (despite a vocal call for that), but still send the message through. Sure, WotC can passive-aggressively react to that by not even functionally reprinting these (Zilthora, Strength Incarnate still waiting it out) and print even more pseudo-reserved-list cards instead, but if they really want to sink their cruise ship with our raft, it's their prerogative.