One of the most surprising things about Remove Enchantments when it came out was that it as a common. It seemed to have an awful lot of text for being a common and was a bit confusing for a beginner to play. Although there would be cards in later sets that let you choose 1 of 3 things on the card that you could do, they generally weren’t as intertwined as Remove Enchantments. In any case, most people avoided this card and just stuck with either disenchant or tranquility.
The Oracle text seems to have cleaned up the wording a bit, thus shortening it considerably. Interestingly, in the old version of the text the wording made it seem like the “remove the enchantments on creatures” only worked on your opponents turn when this was actually not the case (it works on your attack too, but doesn’t blow off enchantments on your opponent’s creatures). I believe that they deliberately threw that wording in there to highlight one of the most useful parts of the card, which is a sort of surprise defense against your opponents by removing the enchantments on their creatures when they attacked.
Card Name: Remove Enchantments
Set: Legends, not reprinted
Card Cost: W
Card Type: Instant
Artist: Brian Snoddy
Text: Remove all enchantments you control and remove all enchantment cards played on all permanents you control. If this spell is cast during opponent’s attack, also remove all enchantment cards played on attacking creatures. All enchantments you own are returned to your hand; all other enchantments are destroyed.
Rules Text (Oracle):Return all enchantments you own and control to your hand. Destroy all other enchantments enchanting permanents you control and/or enchanting attacking creatures.
This card basicaly lets you 1) save all your own enchantments in case of an opponent’s Tranquility or 2) destroy the enchantments on your opponents attacking creatures. I really dug the double nature of the card: as enchantment protector and enchantment destroyer. The effect was a bit difficult to control because if you had some good enchantments on the ground, you might not want to cast it because they’d all return to your hand. One good thing is at least they wouldn’t be destroyed, they’d simply go back to your hand.
This card was particularly useful if an opponent attacked with one of your enchantment pumped creatures that they had put Control Magic on… their control magic would go away, you’d get your creature back AND you’d get your own creature enchantments back in your hand. It was also useful to prevent an opponent targeting one of your own enchantments by boomeranging them back to your hand.
Because of the confusion that was inherent in this card and the fact that it was a common that did and uncommon amount of things, it’s no wonder that Wizards decided not to reprint it!