Monday, February 28, 2011

Hurrah for the New Format!

Okay, so it's not here just yet, but it will be tomorrow.

With the new ban list to take effect tomorrow, the meta will change somewhat dramatically. In the OCG, two somewhat random decks have become quite popular. Those two decks are apparently Hero/Light/Gemini Beat and Vayu Turbo (Graveyard BF).

I'm quite surprised that Hero Beat has been winning tournaments. It's not a particularly good deck, seeing as how it carries the inherent weakness of a Stun deck. However, after two Monsters end up dying, Miracle Fusion can remove them from play for The Shining, who can get them back for free. Take note, though, that The Shining's effect can Miss the Timing, so be sure to take advantage of that.

A big part of why Hero Beat is more popular now is because (Whirlwind) Blackwings are essentially gone. Hero Beat could have a tough time against Blackwings because of Icarus Attack and Kalut. Now, with Kalut down to 1, the idea of using Blackwings is somewhat laughable. Their absence leaves Gemini Spark as the best chainable removal card in the meta at the moment. Hero Beat can also use Skill Drain more effectively than Blackwings can, as Blackwings came to be dependent on Blizzard.

I'm even more surprised that Vayu Turbo has become so popular in the OCG. When I was playing it, it seemed like an inconsistent and unstable deck. However, with Zephyros being able to recycle Armageddon Knight, and the resistance to Solemn Warning, Vayu Turbo can be seen as a good pick. It just has glaring inherent weaknesses that people apparently haven't prepared to exploit, yet.

As for the TCG, Six Samurai and Gravekeeper's will most likely retain some share of the meta. Gladiator Beasts will almost certainly be a popular choice up until the YCS on the 19th, as they always are at the beginning of a format. X-Sabers will probably return as one of the top decks, due to the removal of Book of Moon as a threat to stop their Trap Stun plays.

Hero Beat may also become popular in the TCG, because Elemental Hero The Shining will be legal starting March 1st. While the TCG still doesn't have access to Great Tornado or Nova Master, The Shining was a huge boost to E-Heroes and Super Polymerization. I don't know that they'll be a top deck, though.

It's kind of the same deal with Vayu Turbo. The deck still has the inherent abilities that could lead to its success, but it lacks specific cards in Zephyros, Trishula, and possibly some of the Genex Ally. While Zephyros won't be released for a few months, Trishula and friends (*cough*) will be legal in April. None of them are necessary to the deck, though.

As for me, I'm probably going to stick with my Scrap Worms build up through April, at least. All I have to do for now is drop a Book of Moon for Scapegoat, and fill the space left by Goyo Guardian with Naturia Synchros. Such a nice transition.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Tournament Report 2/26/11

So, I took my Scrap Worms deck to the last tournament for the format.

I played on the Duel Terminals for a bit. I got some Jurrac stuff and a Neo Flamvell Sabre, which is a good card for Flamvells. With Archer, it makes Neo Flamvell Diety, and it's an early-game 2100 ATK beater.

Round 1: vs Machina Gadgets

This was my Round 3 opponent from this tournament.

-Round 1: He opened with Green Gadget and four back rows. I Set Scrap Beast, not wanting to lose it to Bottomless Trap Hole or Dimensional Prison. I also Set Dust Tornado and Call of the Haunted. On his turn, he used Mystical Space Typhoon on my Dust Tornado, which I Chained, destroying his Torrential Tribute. He summoned Red Gadget to search for Yellow, and attacked with Green Gadget to destroy Scrap Beast. After I took the 1300 damage from Red Gadget, I drew Scrap Chimera. I cleared the field with Giant Trunade, attacked with Chimera and Beast, then Synchro Summoned Scrap Dragon. He was forced to suicide a Machina Fortress into it to destroy it, and when he Set his back rows again, I flipped Call of the Haunted in his End Phase, reviving the Scrap Dragon. I randomly hit a back row with its effect, but I lost Scrap Dragon to Dimensional Prison. Soon afterward, I was able to summon Scrap Golem, Synchro Summoning Scrap Twin Dragon to run over the Machina Fortress he Special Summoned. It destroyed my Dragon, letting me revive the Golem to attack directly. I opted against Synchro Summoning XX-Saber Gottoms (a second Scrap Twin Dragon would have actually been helpful). He Set Spirit Reaper, but I had Scrap Chimera in hand to destroy it and win.
-Duel 2: He opened with Banisher of the Radiance (and odd Side Deck card for Scraps...) and two back rows. My hand was bad, so I had to use Giant Trunade to clear his back row, then summon Worm Xex and decline to use its effect. Not being able to use Worm Xex's effect because of Banisher wasn't that bad, since I sided out a Worm Yagan anyway. But yeah, I didn't draw my Tuners, so I couldn't do much. I know that the deck can with without Synchros, but it doesn't work if my opponent gains advantage by just summoning Monsters. The Synchros allow me to keep up with that.
-Duel 3: This duel overall was similar to the second duel. I started with Worm Xex into Worm Yagan, but I didn't have any other Monsters. I also kept drawing stuff like Solemn Warnings and Effect Veiler, which prevented me from playing aggressively. My last two cards before he killed me were Mystical Space Typhoons.

Round 2: vs Newbie Zombies

I won... My opponent really liked Kasha for some reason...

Round 3: vs Hopeless Dragon

-Duel 1: He opened with Koa'ki Meiru Drago, so I couldn't use Cyber Dragon. It was okay, though, since I had Scrap Beast, which I let die, and Scrap Chimera. He didn't draw any other Level 4 or lower Monsters, so I won.
-Duel 2: He didn't draw any Level 4 or lower Monsters at all. I felt bad, but then he started saying that he would've owned me if he had drawn a Level 4 Dragon, because he had Dragon's Mirror and other random stuff. So, I stopped feeling bad for him.

Round 4: vs Frog Monarchs

-Duel 1: His opening hand was something like Treeborn Frog, Ronintoadin, and three Swap Frogs. He didn't draw any Monarchs at all, so I Synchro Summoned Avenging Knight Parshath to push damage through his Treeborn Frog. He left his field open on the next turn, so I thought he had Battle Fader. It turned out to be Gorz, but I had a Dark Hole for that. I ended up using Monster Reborn on Parshath for game. Avenging Knight Parshath is freakin' awesome!
-Duel 2: He actually got a good hand this time, but I kept drawing cards to counter him. I ended up drawing both of my D.D. Crows, removing both of his Treeborn Frogs. And I ran him out of Frogs to use with Ronintoadin, which made me feel pretty safe. It also allowed me to Synchro Summon Scrap Dragon to take control, since he wouldn't be able to get tribute fodder on the field.

There were only four rounds because one of the undefeated players got paired down and lost. My Round 1 opponent ended up winning the tournament, which helped my tie-breakers. So, with my 3-1 record, I got 4th place.

I got a little bit of store credit, which I used to buy two of those new Movie Packs. I was surprised, but it's actually worth spending money on those packs if you're making a Malefic deck.

So yeah, next format should be a lot different. I was hoping that Junk Doppel wouldn't come to the TCG, but with TG Hyper Librarian coming out halfway through the format, that hope was crushed. More on that in another post, most likely.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Tournament Report 2/21/11

So, I went to locals with my Scrap Worms deck.

I played on the Duel Terminal to get the new Duel Terminal 4 cards. I didn't pull anything worth mentioning outside of Genex Ally Triarm and The Fabled Unicore.

Round 1: vs Gravekeeper's

-Duel 1: He went first and opened with Royal Tribute, ripping three Monsters out of my hand. Obviously, I lost.
-Duel 2: He opened with Royal Tribute again, and I was force to use Solemn Judgment, since my hand was all-Monsters. I controlled the game from there and was able to win, seeing as I had cards in my hand this time.
-Duel 3: I stopped drawing Monsters after a while and got beat down by a Descendant. Not a good way to start the day.

Round 2: vs Newbie Six Samurai

-Duel 1: I whittled him down, since he didn't open with Gateway. I was all set up to kill him on my next turn, with his last three cards being an Enishi, Shien's Chancellor on the field and a Legendary Six Samurai - Mizuho and a Great Shogun Shien in hand. He drew Six Samurai United, activated it, and summoned Mizuho. He sent the United to the Graveyard to draw a card; if he drew Kizan or Grandmaster, he would win, if not, I would win. He drew Grandmaster...
-Duel 2: I don't remember how I won. I remember Puppet Plant and Black Rose Dragon played a part in it, though.
-Duel 3: His hand was really bad, all incoherent Monsters. So, I dropped XX-Saber Gottoms and Stardust Dragon to lock down the game.

Round 3: vs Dimensional Eatos

-Duel 1: He opened with Guardian Eatos, Neos Alius, Gemini Spark, Dimensional Fissure, and some other stuff. I drew all-Monsters, so I couldn't fight back.
-Duel 2: I don't remember how I won. I know that Ryko was helpful, though.
-Duel 3: I Synchro Summoned Avenging Knight Parshath, because he was forced to keep Setting Monsters as a defense. He used Book of Moon on Parshath so that he could destroy it with Nobleman of Crossout. But then, I Synchro Summoned Scrap Dragon, and there wasn't much he could do.

Round 4: vs Debris Plants

-Duel 1: I swarmed with Scrap Dragon and a Chimera loop.
-Duel 2: I swarmed with Scrap Golem, finishing off of his last defense of two Fluff Tokens with Avenging Knight Parshath.

Round 5: vs ...

This was my Round 3 opponent from this tournament. He had to leave, so he just gave me the win.

Round 6: vs Volcanics

This was my Round 4 opponent from this tournament. He knew that all I had to do to win was summon Scrap Dragon, so when that happened, he scooped. He also knew that it was pointless to try to beat Scraps with a slow-paced Burn deck, so he gave me the win.

So yeah, I went 5-1, kinda, and got 5th or 6th place or something like that. Instead of getting Turbo Pack 4, I opted to get Starstrike Blast, since Turbo Pack 4 is horrible. I pulled a Gravekeeper's Recruiter, which I sold for $3, which went into the Duel Terminal.

So, I guess it was a fairly good day overall.

OCG Priority Rule Change

This is on the official Japanese Yu-Gi-Oh website.

The first two paragraphs are just stuff like, "Thanks for playing Yu-Gi-Oh." It also states that this change is being made to balance the game.

The rule change goes into effect in the OCG on March 19, 2011. This is the same date as the release of the ZEXAL Starter Deck (and the ZEXAL Duelist Device!).

Before the rule change, you could activate an Effect Monster's Ignition Effect with priority when a Monster is Summoned (Normal, Flip, or Special).

After the rule change, you cannot activate an Effect Monster's Ignition Effect with priority when a Monster is Summoned.

[Obviously, this assumes that you have turn player priority and it's during your Main Phase.]

The last paragraph explains how after the rule change, you will not be able to activate Ignition Effects in response to anything. They will essentially have the same timing requirement as Normal Spells, you can only activate them when nothing is happening during your Main Phase. The concept is fairly simple; you can't activate Normal Spells in response to Summoning a Monster, and after the rule change, Ignition Effects will act the same way.

The question asks, "When the Synchro Summon of my Brionac is successful, can I activate Brionac's effect before my opponent activate their Set Compulsory Evacuation Device, or can they activate their card first?" (It's not phrased exactly like that, but it wouldn't make sense in English as a direct translation.)

The answer is in two parts:

Up until March 18, 2011, you can activate Brionac's effect in response to its successful Synchro Summon. Then, your opponent will be able to Chain Compulsory Evacuation Device.

Starting on March 19, 2011, you cannot activate Brionac's Ignition Effect (they make the effort to show that it's an Ignition Effect) in response to its successful Synchro Summon. [Then, they basically state the ruling change again.] If there are no effects that you can activate, then you need to see if your opponent has any effects they can activate. At this point, your opponent could activate Compulsory Evacuation Device.

There you go, using priority to activate Ignition Effects in response to a Monster's Summon will die in the OCG on March 19, 2011.

Please note that this rule change has no effect on Trigger Effects (Monarchs, Black Rose Dragon, Scrap Chimera, Gadgets, Stratos, Armageddon Knight, etc.) which activate in response to a Monster's Summon. They will still work the same.

Also note that there's no news of this in the TCG, yet. For all we know, this could go into effect March 1 with the ban list. Or, this could go into effect in May with the ZEXAL Starter Deck. We'll just have to wait and see.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

March 2011 Ban List Analysis

Cold Wave is gone, so no more Cold Wave into XX-Saber Hyunlei or Cold Wave into Black Rose Dragon or Cold Wave into Junk Destroyer or Cold Wave into Judgment Dragon or Cold Wave into Coelacanth or Cold Wave into Gyzarus plays. I for one am quite happy with that, since I generally get wrecked by Cold Wave unless I have Scrap Chimera in hand, which is why I play Scraps as opposed to Flamvells. That's a story for another post.

Goyo Guardian is also gone, so people have been scrambling to find a replacement. Nothing really stands out, which is probably why Goyo Guardian got banned. Everyone will still use Brionac, but there's another slot for a Level 6 in most people's Extra Decks. The only generic Level 6 Synchros that people would consider are Gaia Knight, the Force of Earth and Flamvell Uruquizas. There is Iron Chain Dragon, but decks that use Debris Dragon would already have it; otherwise, it's inferior to Gaia Knight.

Personally, I think that both are terrible. If your opponent has a Set Monster, you would rather bounce it with Brionac than let it gets its Flip Effect. And, if your opponent has a big Monster, you would most likely bounce it. Brionac can't get over Scrap Archfiend like Goyo Guardian can. I guess that the notable exception is Monarchs, which Gaia Knight is better against. Still, the theme specific Level 6 Synchros like Dewloren or Naturia Barkion are much better than Uruquizas and Gaia Knight. If I had to pick one of the generic ones, though, I guess it would be Gaia Knight, since I already have a piercing Monster in Avenging Knight Parshath.

Kalut got Limited, which is good, because it could win Blackwing players games practically on its own. And now, Blackwing decks don't have enough good Blackwing Monsters to play, so they'll either have to play bad ones or play other Monsters and lose synergy. Icarus Attack getting Semi-Limited also hurts them, but not by much.

Losing another Honest doesn't mean much to the TCG at the moment. Lightsworn decks lose their unstoppable ability to protect Lumina and Aurkus, and they can't OTK as easily. However, gaining a Chaos Sorcerer and a Card Trooper may help Twilight variants.

Dandylion and Debris Dragon getting hit will severely hinder Debris Plants. However, in the OCG, they have turned into Junk Doppel decks. We in the TCG fortunately don't have TG Hyper Librarian, so we don't have to suffer through that.

Gateway of the Six getting Limited and Spirit Reaper being Semi-Limited has hurt Six Samurai quite a bit. Without Gateway to give them back the cards used in their swarms, they run out quite quickly. If you can survive the initial push (if it even occurs), then you have a good chance of winning when they don't have access to Gateway. Spirit Reaper makes surviving much easier, as well as being a good overall card.

Book of Moon getting Limited and Solemn Warning getting Semi-Limited reduces the amount of cards that players can disrupt plays effectively with. That means you will only have to play through a Solemn Warning/Book of Moon once per duel on average. It also makes more decks viable, like Fabled, since they would often lose to those cards.

Gold Sarcophagus going to 3 makes the Cyber Ouroboros draw engine more viable. It also helps Hopeless Dragon or other such decks that rely on getting one specific card to win. Besides that, there's not much else that Gold Sarcophagus does (I'm pretty sure that Dark Desertapir isn't used...).

Skill Drain Unlimited gives Stun decks another trick. It doesn't help all that much, though, since Trap Stun will most likely see a rise in popularity with the loss of Book of Moon. It costs quite a few LP, as well...

All of the rest isn't relevant to the TCG or at all. An "Impact of the Ban List" post will probably be coming by the end of the week or something.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Random Report

I was supposed to go the the Xbox tournament today, but it got cancelled. Very sad.

However, I was able to pick up quite a few cards. I got a play-set of Genex Ally Birdman and two Genex Ally Crusher. I plan on making a deck that can use them, but I'm not exactly sure what. If the format doesn't get too crazy, I'll probably make a random control deck featuring them or whatever. Or, maybe Vayu Turbo, again. We'll see.

I also got a few Neo Flamvell stuff for vadangchoinga. One Ancient Flamvell Deity, two Neo Flamvell Hedgehogs, and I still have that Neo Flamvell Sabre that I got last weekend. So yeah. If he doesn't use them, then I might.

Also, for some reason, the manga with E-Hero The Shining is already out, so I was able to buy seven of them for a good price. I figured that I would keep five for Aki and myself, then trade/sell the other two.

After all that, I helped Katana and his friend with their decks, and we made some duel videos, which should go up starting tomorrow. I actually skipped over two sets of videos that Aki and I recorded because the first one was boring and the second one had that Dragunity build that's going to be obsolete in less than a month getting owned by E-Heroes.

I'm not sure what else to talk about. I might do some ban list analysis later today or tomorrow.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Apparently Real Ban List

Sorry the picture isn't clear. It's the biggest version I could find.


Goyo Guardian
Cold Wave
Mass Driver


Blackwing - Kalut
Book of Moon
Gateway of the Six


Card Trooper
Archlord Kristya
Spirit Reaper
Debris Dragon
Royal Tribute
Overload Fusion
Solemn Warning
Icarus Attack


Chaos Sorcerer
Demise, King of Armageddon
Snipe Hunter
Dewloren, Tiger Prince of the Ice Barrier
Gold Sarcophagus
Skill Drain
Ultimate Offering

This is supposedly the real list.

Strangely, I don't mind losing Goyo Guardian. I think it's because I'm happy with the rest of the list overall. Oh, and also the fact that I almost never summon Level 6 Synchros...

With Heavy Storm not coming back, I guess I'll be sticking with my Scrap Worms build. No janky fast-paced Scrap deck.

More analysis later, maybe... Don't forget the Random Stuff post I just did an hour ago, by the way...

Random Stuff #25

I've started collecting some janky cards because they're either cool or clever. For instance, Flamvell Grunika is an awesome-looking card, so I started collecting them. Terminal World is a clever reference to the Duel Terminals, so I'm also collecting that.

I'm also collecting Nordic Relic Gungnir. The main reason is that I could tell Aki that I got another Gungnir and see his face when I show it to him, but it's not a bad card in its own right.

There's also my hoarding Dragunity Knights. Of course, that has nothing to do with the fact that the Dragunity Structure Deck coming out next month will increase their prices...

The new Exceed Monsters have been revealed. They go in the Extra Deck and have Ranks instead of Levels. The card design is cool, but it kind of goes against the simplicity of the previous design, not that I care.

While knowing a little more about Exceed Monsters is nice, the main pieces of information I want are the rulings and mechanics behind them. Do the Monsters used as materials have to be face-up? Can we use Tokens? Does it matter if the Monsters are Tuners/non-Tuners? How are Ranks different from Levels? What's with those numbers in front of the names...?

The ban list is supposed to come out soon. It will be nice to start planning for next format. Hopefully Six Samurai decks will be weakened and Heavy Storm will come back. If Heavy Storm does indeed return, then a faster Scrap build might become viable.

Also, I'm going to be posting a Scrap Worms deck video later today, so watch out for that.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

1K Tournament Report 2/12/11

I went to a 1K tournament today with my Scrap Worms deck. I wanted to prepare for Six Samurai, but my deck was already as good as it could be against them without destroying my chances against other decks.

So, I met up with vadangchoinga, but he opted not to join the tournament. In the end, there were only 46 participants, which meant six rounds of Swiss and a Top 8 cut.

Round 1: vs Stun

-Duel 1: I started beating him down with Worms and Scrap Beasts, but then I took a beating. I dropped down to 600 LP before I could make my double Scrap Dragon push.
-Duel 2: Basically the same deal as the first duel, except he sided in Dimensional Fissures and Burdens (I think he sided the Burdens, since I didn't see them in the first game). I had a Dust Tornado and Mystical Space Typhoon for the two Dimensional Fissures he drew, and I held out until I drew Scrap Chimeras.

Round 2: vs Twilight

This was my previous opponent's friend, not that any of you care.

-Duel 1: Aurkus is annoying. However, he milled both of his Judgment Dragons and apparently didn't have any cards in his deck to get them back. I was just going to deck him out, but the opportunity to beat him down with Scrap Dragon arose, and I took it.
-Duel 2: He Special Summoned Stardust Dragon, Dark Armed Dragon, and Judgment Dragon... at the same time...
-Duel 3: I held out, because I thought he had Judgment Dragon. When I could, I dropped Stardust Dragon, then Scrap Dragon to make sure he didn't have enough LP to destroy the field. He never got the Judgment Dragon, though.

Round 3: vs Legendary Six Samurai

-Duel 1: I drew double Solemn Warning and was super aggressive with my Scraps, so I won.
-Duel 2: He beat me down with Naturia Barkion, so the Puppet Plants and Kinetic Soldiers were of no help.
-Duel 3: I drew double Solemn Warning and was super aggressive with whatever random Monsters I happened to draw. I think I started with Worm Xex, then pushed for more damage with Cyber Dragon and Scrap Chimera, even though I hadn't drawn any Tuners.

Round 4: vs Fish OTK


-Duel 1: He started with Upstart Goblin, and I thought he was playing Six Samurai. But then, he used Pot of Duality, so I found out he was playing Fish. He ended up getting Cold Wave off of that Duality, so I had to be super aggressive. He didn't draw Coelacanth, and had to use Gold Sarcophagus for it. After that, he built up a wall of Frogs so as to not die. But, I revived Scrap Golem with Monster Reborn, then dumped a Scrap Goblin on his side of the field and attacked through it for game.
-Duel 2: I tried to ward off the OTK, but he ended up Synchro Summoning two Armory Arms and the Colossal Fighter to kill me.
-Duel 3: I pushed through 5600 damage with Scrap Beast, Scrap Chimera, and Brionac to hopefully kill him before getting OTK'd. Afterward, I Synchro Summoned Scrap Dragon, of course. He used Giant Trunade and I Chained Scrapstorm, in a desperate attempt to draw Effect Veiler. Sure enough, it happened. He summoned Coelacanth and I dropped the Effect Veiler. He attacked over Brionac and revived Ronintoadin. I drew Cyber Dragon, which allowed me to Synchro Summon Avenging Knight Parshath when paired with the Scrap Goblin I searched with Scrapyard. That turned his Ronintoadin to ATK, letting me run over it for game. Two unorthodox wins in one match, quite odd.

Round 5: vs Blackwings

-Duel 1: He used Solemn Warning and took an attack from Scrap Beast, so I was prepared to push through enough damage for game on my next turn, but it involved the risk of leaving a Sirocco on his side of the field until then. He Special Summoned Bora and Normal Summoned Blizzard with no targets in the Graveyard. He used Sirocco's effect to focus the 5000 ATK on Bora, then Synchro Summoned Armor Master with Sirocco and Blizzard. Monster Reborn brought back the Sirocco, which focused another 4500 ATK on the Bora for a total of 9500 ATK. Needless to say, I got OTK'd.
-Duel 2: I poked a couple times with Scrap Beast, then pushed through a bunch of damage somehow for game.
-Duel 3: He used Solemn Judgment on my Bottomless Trap Hole so that he could fuse his Cyber Dragon with my Cyber Dragon. Then he Normal Summoned Blizzard, revived Kalut, and Synchro Summoned Magical Android, pushing through 4400 damage. I Set the Mirror Force I was saving, which destroyed both of his Monsters. I then attempted to Synchro Summon Stardust Dragon against his lone back row and Bora, but it got Warned. It was fine, though, since I used Giant Trunade to recycle the Call of the Haunted I had used for the Synchro Summon and destroyed the Bora with Smashing Ground. Unfortunately, he dropped his last two cards, Shura and Gale on the next turn. I was forced to use Call of the Haunted, and he halved its stats with Gale in Main Phase 2. After that he Synchro Summoned Armor Master. I top-decked Scrap Beast and Synchro Summoned Scrap Twin Dragon. He attacked it to place a Wedge Counter, and I switched it to DEF. He removed the Wedge Counter and attacked it, letting me revive Scrap Beast. He Set a back row, and I summoned Worm Xex to Synchro Summon Scrap Dragon. He tried to respond to the summon with Mystical Space Typhoon, destroying the Call of the Haunted that was left over so that I couldn't destroy it and Armor Master. As it would turn out, I was going to destroy his back row, since I had Smashing Ground to deal with the Armor Master, letting me attack for game.

Round 6: vs Gladiator Beasts

This was my Round 3 opponent from this tournament. We were the last two undefeated players, so it didn't matter who won. We just played for fun, since we're friends, and I ended up losing.

So, I got 2nd place in Swiss and made it into the Top 8. Sadly, I was paired up against one of the two Six Samurai players. I agreed to a split with him and four other people, and ended up losing to him 0-2.

My Round 8 opponent from this tournament and my Round 5 opponent from today ended up getting 1st and 2nd place, and they happened to be the two people who didn't agree to the split. Quite sad. Regardless, I ended up winning a little over twice the entry free, so that was good.

Of course, I also got good trades throughout the event. They included a Stardust Shimmer, Gae Dearg, DT Naturia Landoise, Ultimate Rare Atomic Scrap Dragon, some Symphonic Warriors, and Karakuri Steel Shogun mdl 00X "Bureido". I also got a bunch of Six Samurai cards from STOR for Katana, who may or may not make the "Only Gateway Reinforce" deck that I proposed. We may have to wait a while for Shi Ens...

So yeah, it was a pretty good day overall. I honestly didn't expect to do so well, and a lot of people we surprised that Scraps and Worms worked so well together. I think that some people will start to copy my deck now...

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Analyzing the New Six Samurai

So, with the Legendary Six Samurai officially able to wreak havoc, you should be prepared to face them.

Although all of the Gateway shenanigans are broken in themselves, it's more difficult to play through a Shi En than it is to play through a Gateway. Statistically, your opponent will be able to summon Shi En on the first turn more often than they would draw Gateway in their opening hand.

Assuming that your opponent plays the full three Kagemusha, three Kageki, three Smoke Signal, and one Reinforcement of the Army and is also playing a 40-card deck with three Upstart Goblins, they have about a 50% chance of being able to summon Shi En on their first turn. That's quite often.

So, what would you Side Deck against such a threat? If you play Frog Monarchs and/or have a decent amount of Tuners in your deck, then you should consider Puppet Plant.

A Puppet Plant play would generally involve taking your opponent's Shi En, summoning a Tuner under its protection, and Synchro Summoning something with it. However, this play has some flaws. Solemn Warning/Judgment can still get rid of your Tuner before the Synchro, leaving you to hand back the Shi En at the end of the turn. There's also Rivalry of Warlords, which Six Samurai decks may side against you. If they Chain it to Puppet Plant's effect, you can't summon your Tuner unless it's a Warrior. So, X-Sabers, you're fine, but everything else would be stopped. These two facts may be the reason why Puppet Plant isn't seeing as much play as one would expect in the OCG.

Note that Frog Monarchs don't care about these two counters. So your Monarch got Solemn'd, who cares? Shi En is still gone. They flipped Rivalry? Tribute Set.

Anyway, these preventative plays will happen more often that you would expect. A Six Samurai player has up to a 74% chance of drawing a Solemn (Judgment/Warning) or Rivalry in their starting hand. This could be why Kinetic Soldier is more popular in the OCG.

Kinetic Soldier is hard to get through for Six Samurai. If you Set it, they can't stop it with Solemn, and it's not going to be stymied by Rivalry. The only real way a Six Samurai player can get rid of it is with Hand of the Six Samurai or Legendary Six Samurai - Mizuho. I'm sure that the Solemn was too late to hit Shi En will be able to take out Hand or Mizuho when it's summoned. And if your opponent had Seven Tools, Magatama, or Giant Trunade ready to stop you, you were probably going to lose anyway...

Two other cards to consider are Warrior Elimination and Gozen Match. Warrior Elimination is pretty situational, since they have both Shi En and Magatama to stop it. Gozen Match is only good if you open with it to prevent the swarm from even taking place. That being said, it's the same deal as using Solemn Warning against them. Both Gozen Match and Solemn won't help when the Shi En is already on the field. That's why these picks aren't as popular as Puppet Plant or Kinetic Soldier.

It's important to notice that I've ignored Gateway of the Six for most of this post. The reason is that Six Samurai don't need it to win (anymore). Sure, if they're successful in pulling off a Gateway combo, you're probably going to lose. But, that doesn't mean that you should side heavily for it. If you draw your Fairy Winds and Spell Shattering Arrows, but they don't draw their Gateways, you're in an even worse position. Same as if you side in Reign-Beaux against Gravekeeper's, but they don't draw Royal Tribute. It's better to prepare for the more prevalent threat in Shi En. Besides, your Mystical Space Typhoons and Dust Tornadoes are enough to deal with Gateway and such.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Reinforcing the Only Gateway

A silly attempt at a clever title, but it's still valid. In about two weeks, we'll see the new ban list, which will hopefully have Gateway of the Six being Limited. Under that assumption, Six Samurai decks will have to adapt to reduce their reliance on Gateway. It may force them to be more of a control deck, because they won't have Gateway to make up for the cards that they dump on the field recklessly.

So, here's my attempt at a Synchro-based Six Samurai build for the next format:

Monsters: (17)

Grandmaster of the Six Samurai x2
Legendary Six Samurai - Kizan x3
Legendary Six Samurai - Mizuho
The Six Samurai - Yaichi
Legendary Six Samurai - Kageki x3
Kagemusha of the Six Samurai x3
Shien's Footsoldier x3
X-Saber Pashuul

Spells: (14)

Monster Reborn
Dark Hole
Giant Trunade
Mystical Space Typhoon x2
Mind Control
Gateway of the Six
Six Samurai United x3
Shien's Smoke Signal x3
Reinforcement of the Army

Traps: (10)

Mirror Force
Bottomless Trap Hole x2
Call of the Haunted
Double-Edged Sword Technique x3
Reinforce Truth x3

The Extra Deck is up to you(r budget), but you'll need at least two Legendary Six Samurai - Shi En. Feel free to use Red Nova Dragon, because it's completely plausible that you could summon it. It could even act as another win condition.

It can be almost as explosive as Six Samurai are now, but it doesn't rely heavily on Gateway of the Six. The main idea is to give you access to a Tuner (Kagemusha or Pashuul) as soon as possible. Seeing as how there are 14 cards that give you access to a Tuner, you'll get one fairly easily. Fortunately, most of those cards also give you access to non-Tuners that you can pair with your Tuner.

Reinforce Truth lets you Special Summon Shien's Footsoldier to possibly search out a Six Samurai non-Tuner, such as Yaichi, which you could use to clear the way for a Synchro. In dire situations, you could stall behind X-Saber Pashuul. I shouldn't have to say this, but make sure that you use Reinforce Truth on your opponent's turn so you don't lose your Battle Phase...

Much like it's being used for now, Double-Edged Sword Technique can be a one-card Synchro when you have a Kagemusha and another Six Samurai in the Graveyard. Seeing as how there are 13 ways to get Kagemusha, that shouldn't be too difficult.

Obviously, this deck isn't as competitive as it could be. I just threw it together in a few minutes, so there's room for improvement. If you want, you could replace the Mystical Space Typhoons with Musakani Magatamas. You could also find room for Junk Synchron and Book of Moon if you feel the need to do so.

If your budget is low, then you can replace the Kizans with a combination of Zanji and Irou. Probably two Zanji and one Irou. With the Special Summoning provided by Reinforce Truth, their effects will be live fairly often, even if you don't have Grandmaster.

So yeah, feel free to suggest improvements or other ideas for the deck.

Not the STOR Sneak Preview

So, even though every single card shop in my area ran out of Storm of Ragnarok packs, I just went to the usual card shop for fun.

First, I played the Duel Terminal. It only had cards from DT01 and DT02 in it, which is the first four Japanese Duel Terminals. It was still pretty good. The first card I pulled was Genex Controller, which was nice. Then, I pulled an AOJ Catastor, which allows me to sell my spare Secret Rare one to Katana, who is getting back into the game. The only other notable cards were Soul Exchange and Blue-Eyes White Dragon.

I also played a couple of Speed Duels. Both times, I scanned in Flamvell Grunika, Dragnov, and Guard, hoping to get a Flamvell deck, but I ended up getting a Dragon deck, which was much better than Flamvells.

The first Speed Duel was against Kiryu (Kalin). He started with Into the Void, then Set three Traps (so his back row was full) and Infernity Necromancer. I summoned Blizzard Dragon to freeze his Necromancer so he couldn't use its effect or Synchro with it. I held out like that for three turns, since his back row was full and he didn't play any other Monsters. During that time, I summoned two more Dragons, one of which was Mirage Dragon. Then, I tributed Flamvell Grunika for Strong Wind Dragon, allowing me to OTK.

The second Speed Duel was against Mokuba. He started with a Kaiser Sea Horse and a back row. I just Set Flamvell Guard. Then, he tributed for Blue-Eyes White Dragon, and I had to stall for a little while. I Destiny Scanned Reinforcements, then Special Summoned Red-Eyes Darkness Metal Dragon, Special Summoning Mirage Dragon. I attacked Mokuba's Hunter Dragon after Setting Reinforcements. But then, he used Smashing Ground on it forcing me to Chain it to save my REDMD. He attacked the Mirage Dragon after Setting a Trap. I summoned Blizzard Dragon, freezing Blue-Eyes, then revived Flamvell Guard with REDMD's effect. I Synchro Summoned Catastor, but Mokuba stopped the attack with Negate Attack. But, he couldn't follow up, simple Setting another back row. I revived Mirage Dragon and went for game.

So, that was fun. Then, I went to duel some of the random people at the card shop. I was using the random Black Garden deck I discussed earlier. The first guy I dueled was playing Gladiator Beasts, but he wasn't that good. Regardless, I still lost because he had Cold Wave to break through my field, and he also summoned Gyzarus at least three times in a single duel. He just kept drawing the Bestiari...

The second match was against that guy's friend, who was playing Fableds. I just controlled him with Black Garden and beat him fairly easily. I played another match against him, and he switched to his Naturia deck. Same deal as with the Fableds, except it was slightly more difficult for me.

Then, I dueled against this one guy using a Frog Monarch-esque deck. Instead of using Monarchs, he used other Tribute Summon Monsters like Jinzo, Dark Dust Spirit, and Prime Material Dragon. He won the first duel thanks to Gorz, but I won the next two with Black Garden control and such.

After that, I dueled against my previous opponent's friend, who was using Six Samurai (he didn't have Kizans, though). I used my Scrap Worms deck for this, because we wanted the match to go faster. And that it did. He drew a bad hand in the first duel, and I capitalized with two Scrap Chimeras. In the second duel, I held out for a while with Worm Yagans and such, but he beat me down with Shi En and Grandmaster. The third duel was basically like the first duel, except that I wasted most of his resources early, leaving him top-decking against my Scrap Dragon and Set Solemn Warning.

After that, I decided to buy a Red Nova Dragon tin so that I could get a Hidden Arsenal pack. Unfortunately, I didn't pull any good cards at all, so all I really got from the tin was the promo cards.

So yeah, I'm just looking forward to the 1K tournament this upcoming weekend and such. And, I think that I'm going to stick with my Scrap Worms deck for now, because the Black Garden deck is too Stun-ish for me.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Storm of Ragnarok Sneak Preview...

I didn't get to go today. Apparently, at all of the nearby card shops, they ran out of packs within the first hour of opening. So, I'll try tomorrow.

Anyway, I guess I can list out the cards I actually want from the set...

Blackwing - Boreas the Sharp
Scrap Worm
Scrap Shark
Karakuri Steel Shogun mdl 00X "Bureido"
Atomic Scrap Dragon
Stardust Shimmer
Forbidden Lance
Terminal World
Elemental Hero Ice Edge

That's all. Just one-tenth of the set. What's even more sad is that I only want most of those as collectibles. The only good one is Forbidden Lance...

So yeah, this set isn't all that important to me directly, so I don't mind not getting the packs early. I'll probably go to the Sneak Preview tomorrow, but if I don't, then it doesn't matter, since it's officially released two days later...

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Black Garden

I saw trynet's Black Garden deck video after reading his tournament report, and the deck seems pretty amazing. The amazing part about it is that it doesn't rely on Black Garden, but effectively incorporates it into the deck.

So yeah, that's the type of deck I'm considering switching to. I obviously don't have two Pots of Duality (I just traded the one I did have for two Solemn Warnings...), so I'm going to have some spots open to tech some random cards.

The reason given for why the deck was 42 cards is that drawing into multiple Volcanic Shells is terrible, which I agree with. That's why I want to keep the deck at 42, even without the two Duality. So, the first thing I thought of replacing them with was Legacy of Yata-Garasu. It keeps the deck at 42 while essentially thinning it when I draw it, and can also act as a bluff to draw out MST and what-not.

I'm still trying to figure out some other ideas, though. If there's something better that I overlooked, then I would consider using it.

Also, Breaker in the Main Deck instead of Amazoness Sage. I know why Amazoness Sage can be good, since it gets under Bottomless Trap Hole and can keep destroying back rows. The downside is that it has to attack successfully and not die in battle or by an effect before the end of the Damage Step.

With this deck, I'm also worried about the Six Samurai match-up. It can prevent a huge swarm from taking place if my opponent doesn't get it off before I can even make a move, but it can't retaliate very well against a huge swarm. The best bet in that situation would be a Blaze Accelerator that somehow gets past Shi En (that's how Konami decided to split the name; at least with the apostrophe it looked nicer...). Based on Destruction Jammer's rulings, Musakani Magatama cannot negate Blaze Accelerator, so that's nice.

So yeah, I'm probably going to be working with some sort of Black Garden deck soon. If Heavy Storm comes off of the ban list, then I'll probably switch back to Scraps. They'll be more viable then, anyway, and I wouldn't have to use Anti-Stun tactics.

Also, if you haven't noticed, I've resumed uploading duel videos. My Scrap Worms deck is actually going to be featured tomorrow, if all goes according to schedule.