Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Looking ahead to YCS Guadalajara

This upcoming weekend (February 4th/5th) features YCS Guadalajera, Mexico. It will be the first premiere-level event after the release of Order of Chaos, so it seems like it will be an excellent opportunity for duelists to showcase the Wind Up and Inzector archetypes, as well as less hyped and prominent themes like Ninjas.

Certainly, Wind-Ups and Inzectors will be viewed as 'the decks to beat', but established Tier 1 strategies like Dino Rabbit and Tour Guide Tengu Plants will also be legitimate contenders. Though they've fallen slightly 'off the radar', I can see Agents doing well as well. In regards to Karakuri and Dark World, I'm not too confident about their chances, especially the latter.
For Karakuri, the fact of the matter is that as a combo-based deck with few stand-alone cards, it in theory, should be weak against Wind Ups, which can send combo pieces to the grave, and Inzectors, which can take advantage of how Karakuris must commit multiple cards to the field. Of course, one can say the same about all decks, in that any given deck could potentially suffer the same fate should the player not have Maxx "C" or Effect Veiler in hand, but IMO combo-based decks suffer more than those that rely more on stand-alone cards. The only other real issue I have with the deck is that it has been severely underrepresented at recent events, which no doubt contributed to low success rates.
However, the deck still has very potent weapons in Naturia Landoise and Karakuri Ninja Kuick, which is something to consider.
The biggest issues plaguing Dark World IMO, would be the inability of current builds to support hand traps, which will be necessary to inhibit Wind Ups and Inzectors, and the fact that the Shadow Imprisoning Mirrors being sided by many duelists to stop Inzectors would end up harming Dark World decks as well.

Depending on the turnout, it could be questionable how relevant the results of this YCS is going to be, given that we're nearing the end of the current format. I have read and/or suspect that many of the good / reputable players from the USA and Canada will not be attending the event, instead opting to wait until YCS Atlanta before they unveil their new strategies. This opens up the door for local duelists to flaunt their skill (what's left of it in this game anyway... or their wallets) and make a name for themselves at the premier event level.
On the flip side, by the time YCS Atlanta takes place, Japan should have already received (or almost received) their copy of VJump, which would reveal the contents of the upcoming March banlist. Subsequently, the results of YCS Atlanta would be meaningless, as there's no way it would impact the banlist in any way.
Assuming that YCS Guadalejara takes place before that particular issue of VJump gets finalized, printed, and shipped out, the results of the impact of the new cards from the TCG release of Order of Chaos could be submitted for consideration. Though I'm doubtful that it will make it in time, I don't know the workings of the publishing company nor Konami, so it's certainly within the realm of possibility.

On a side note, I doubt that the release of the Dragons Collide structure deck will make a significant impact on the meta, but it's interesting that this event takes place the weekend before the decks release lol...

Friday, January 27, 2012

Locals Report 01/26/2012

This was the first week of locals where Order of Chaos was officially legal for use, so I was expecting a good number of new strategies to pop up (Ninja, Wind Up, Inzectors, etc). However, the only new decks were a pair of Wind Up decks (1 of which just shat on all of his opponents and won the whole tournament).
I have failed thus far to acquire any Fiendish Chains (a ridiculous $25+ on eBay wtf) , and still needed to pick up some Ninjitsu Art of Super Transformations to complement the playset of Hanzos I pulled, so I opted to just stick with the deck I used last week :S

Round 1: LFN (TCG Exclusives) vs Shark Hat (Tengu Zombie Plants)
I win the dice roll
G1: Spirit Reaper did work, amassing too much advantage for him to make a comeback from
G2: My monster was banished by his Caius, and he then dropped BLS, to finish off my 4800 LP
G3: He used his Solemn to force through a play of his which ultimately failed to net much advantage, if any at all. This put his LP at a manageable 2800 for me to wipe out with my counterattack
Result: OXO

Round 2: LFN (TCG Exclusives) vs Kevo (Dark World)
I lose the dice roll
G1: We both stalled with Zenmaines for the longest time. I knew he was waiting for pretty much any card that could discard his Dark World cards, so I had to push through as fast as I could, even if it meant making questionable plays. If I push, I had a chance of winning, but if I took too long, it would be over for me. He ended up winning anyway, finishing up with about 9 minutes left in the round
G2: He camped on Zenmaines again, and even with 7+ cards in total, I didn't have any way of getting past it. Subsequently, we went into time, and I couldn't deal even 1 LP of damage (I was desperate enough that I would have even pulled a "Courtney Waller" and summoned my D.D. Crow to attack for 100, if I could) , so the game was a draw. He was up a game though, hence the match win went to him.
Result: XT

Round 3: LFN (TCG Exclusives) vs NEXUS - JC (Tengu Zombie Plants)
I lose the dice roll
G1: I resolved a Trishula on my 1st turn using Foolish Burial + Debris Dragon after he misplayed his Dustshoot, and it was gg from there
G2: I was swiftly taken down to 200 LP, and it wasn't enough to fall back on as I attempted to make a comeback
G3: This game was mostly in my favor, to the point where I was up both in cards and LP. The best play he had was to special summon BLS and swing directly to drop me to 3300 LP, but I had the Gorz in hand, which admittedly didn't even matter much, as the other goodies I had would have been enough to finish him off
Result: OXO

Round 4: LFN (TCG Exclusives) vs Squiddy (Stun)
I lose the dice roll
G1: I managed to drop 3 cards out of his hand with Spirit Reaper, and it certainly didn't help him that I kept chaining MST's to his Breaker pops to snipe his own backrows. Eventually, I Mind Controlled his Tengu to go for Utopia, which ended up controlling the latter portion of the game
G2: I couldn't deal with his massive backrow and monsters (especially Doomcaliber Knight), and was soundly beaten down
G3: In the early stages of the game, he was compelled to Solemn my Spirit Reaper, which helped out decently. This game again featured the chaining of my MST's to his Breakers, for the +1's
Result: OXO

 Squiddy Flee !

Final Round: LFN (TCG Exclusives) vs NEXUS - TYu (Rock Stun)
The Nexus members requested that I conduct a split, as I had inferior tiebreaks. I WILL NOT SUBMIT TO NEXUS!! (We're friends of course but I have apparently been declared to be an adversary of the Nexus, though to be fair they were the instigators lol) They sighed and shook their heads and I was like I'm sorry guys but I challenge you to a duel
I win the dice roll
G1: I exhausted my Warnings on his Fossil Dynas and Guaibas (in Rock Stun!), and he eventually plussed too much off his Shard of Greeds, created Evolzar Laggia, and that's gg for me
G2: Despite him siding in Dimensional Fissure and Solemn'ing my Solemn, I was able to win out with beatdown mode. Spirit Reapers and Snowman Eaters were awesome
G3: More Snowman / Reaper walling and beatdown mode ensued, and he eventually stopped drawing into monsters. He gradually grew tired/bored with his deck and started playing w/e, making odd plays like banishing my Spore with Dimensional Prison instead of saving it for actual threats
Result: XOO
Final Result: 4-1

I ended up placing 5th lol... in a Top 4 cut prize payout schematic. In hindsight I probably should have split to ensure myself a prize pack, but I wanted to win more than I wanted the pack, so it's w/e
My acquisitions went well though: I snagged 2 Wind Up Rats in exchange for a super Solemn, Gold Bottomless Trap Hole, and a few $1-$4 cards. Additionally I picked up a Ninjitsu Art of Super Transformation (still need 2 more), an XYZ Reborn, and a super Horn of the Phantom Beast for my Turbo Pack collection, collectively for $35, which is ok I guess.
Nexus - JC ended up borrowing my Hanzos, so I'll have to hold up on building Ninjas at the moment, which is fine

Thursday, January 26, 2012

TCG Masked HERO Acid confirmed

March will be so fun. The new Masked HEROs are going to be imported not long after their release in the OCG. Official Page here. They will be included along with cards like the reprint of Elemental HERO The Shining, the alternate art Terror Byte, and Void Ogre Dragon (Infernity support!), in the 2012 Premium Collection Tin.

Elemental HERO Raigeki --> Mask Change --> Masked HERO Harpie's Feather Duster!

On a side note, I gambled on a box of Order of Chaos yesterday...
At 1st I was like :S
But then I was like :D
That Sneak Peek Karma paid off after all:
Just a short post lol, I'm pretty tired

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

So I heard you want to play Inzectors...

"You can send this Equp Card to the Graveyard to target 1 card on the field: destroy that target"

"If this card is destroyed by your opponent's card (either by battle or by card effect), you can Special Summon 1 "Watt" monster from your deck."

"Your opponent cannot select another face-up "Watt" monster as an attack target, or target them with card effects"

Friday, January 20, 2012

Locals Report 01/19/2011

The night before, I had completely no idea about what I wanted to play, so I took the easy way out and decided to play a Meta deck (for once lol). However, I didn't (and still don't) own an Orient Dragon nor an Ancient Fairy Dragon, so I made a mental note to borrow them off friends come tournament time (this will be important later on)

Round 1: LFN (money deck Tour Guide Tengu Plants) vs Chai Guo Jia (??????)
I win the dice roll
G1: My opening hand consisted of 5 monsters and an MST lol. I summon Raioh and pass. He sets a monster and 3 backrow. I set MST. He then summons Breaker, and breaks MST, which I chain. It hits Compulsory, which he chains to bounce Raioh. He flips D.D. Assailant (!!!) and swings with both. I summon Raioh again but it gets eaten by his main-decked Bottomless Trap Hole. He summons another D.D. Assailant (!!!) and his monsters swing for game. Wow.
G2: I summon Raioh again. He sets a monster and a backrow. I attack the monster, and it was Nimble Momonga (!!!). He brings out 2 more. I summon Tengu, set Warning, and end turn. He flips the Momongas up and overlays into Gachi Gachi Gantetsu (!!!), which I opt to negate with Raioh. My Solemn Warning got negated by a random Seven Tools (!!!) as well. Eventually though, I'm able to grind through his monsters with Tengus, and take the game. The Snowman Eaters I sided in did work too
G3: Another grindfest, as he had a seemingly never-ending stream of backrow. At one point, I attempted to Solemn Warning his Marauding Captain's (!!!) effect, only for him to flip Solemn Judgment and force through the special summon of Neo Spacian Grand Mole, which ended up bouncing my Stardust. However, he was unable to deal with the subsequent Tour Guide plays, and I emerged victorious. This was quite the interesting match, as his deck as a whole was very unconventional, so I could never really guess as to what he would play or summon next.
Result: XOO

The sad thing is, at this moment, I realized that I had completely forgotten that I needed to borrow the aforementioned Ancient Fairy Dragon and Orient Dragon!! I was playing with a 13 card Extra Deck!! D:

Round 2: LFN (Tour Guide Tengu Plants) vs Edward (Tour Guide Tengu Zombie Plants)
I lose the dice roll
G1: He had a pretty decent hand, and I get Reaper'ed to the point where I'm like -3 in card advantage so I scoop it up
G2: This was quite a long game, I finally finish him off with Armory Arm's burn effect
G3: Another grindfest, the game was won when I flipped Enemy Controller to tribute Sangan, taking his Brionac. After searching for Sangan, I pitched 2 cards to bounce his 2 backrows, and finished off his remaining 1900 LP, while I was down to a mere 750 LP
Result: XOO

Round 3: LFN (Tour Guide Tengu Plants) vs Nick D (Six Samurai)
I lose the dice roll
G1: He opens poorly, as evidenced when he set a monster and 2-3 backrow. I was almost certain that it was Kageki or Kagemusha, so I didn't bother attacking into it. It turned out to be a Spirit of the Six Samurai lolol. He dropped Grandmaster and equipped it with Spirit to kill my Tengu, and over the next few turns, I basically vomited a slew of monsters onto the field, fighting through his multiple Fiendish Chains, to win it.
G2: This game was more or less beatdown courtesy of Tengu and Caius, as his hand was ill-prepared to deal with such threats (his backrows had stuff like a bluff Heavy Storm, Debunk, and other irrelevant cards).
Fortunately, through both games, he never drew Gateway or made LSS ShiEn. Conversely, I didn't draw into a single trap card through both games :/
Result: OO

Final Round: LFN (Tour Guide Tengu Plants) vs Nexus - JC (Tengu Zombie Plants)
I win the dice roll
G1: My Formula Synchron and 5900 LP were no match for his Black Luster Soldier, Brionac, and Tengu(?). Dominated.
G2: I drew a ridiculously good hand, summoning Tengu and setting Solemn Warning, with Caius in hand. He set a monster and passed, allowing me to tribute Tengu for Caius, which banished the set Goblin Zombie. After eating damage from both the new Tengu and Caius, he scooped next turn
G3: He passed his opening turn without making a play, perhaps telegraphing Gorz, so I summoned Tengu and set Warning before passing, mirroring my opener from last game. He again set a monster. I summoned Spirit Reaper, and Tengu attacked into his Reaper. Fortunately, I had Enemy Controller in hand, which I immediately played to target and kill Reaper, before hitting him with my own Reaper. Warning took care of his Gorz, and over the next few turns, his hand was gradually depleted by Reaper's effect. Eventually he dropped a Tragoedia, but at that point it was so weak that it was immediately killed by Tour Guide
Result: XOO
Final Result: 4-0

I ended up pulling Ninja Grandmaster Sasuke out of my 4 prize packs lol... better than nothing I suppose.
As far as the deck goes, it's as cookie cutter as it gets, with a couple notable exceptions. I relegated Caius to the sideboard in order to accomodate a 2nd Spirit Reaper into the main deck, went with a 2-2 Maxx "C" and Veiler lineup instead of 3-1 (I only own 2 Maxx "C"), and forwent Scapegoat in favor of Book of Moon, which would be more helpful in the Dino Rabbit matchup.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

My take on the March 2012 banlist

After perusing through LGQ's take on the upcoming banlist, I took some time to come up with my own. Granted, it's still January, but the list should have been already finalized and leaked by the time the next YCS events take place in late February.

1) This is STRICTLY my own opinion, on how the banlist SHOULD look like. "SHOULD" =/= "WILL".
2) There are certain cards which should be hit, but most likely won't be, due to their status as TCG exclusives (notably Tour Guide and Reborn Tengu).

Most Important: Change priority rulings to match the OCG.

Black Luster Soldier - EoTB: This was just reprinted in the OCG Gold series, so I don't see it getting banned, but it really should. Nobody in their right mind can seriously think that this is a balanced card, and it shouldn't have been unbanana'ed to begin with.
Dandylion: Being able to generate free tokens from being sent to the grave from anywhere is an amazing effect. Others have advocated the banning of Glow-Up Bulb, but seeing as it's recursion effect can only happen once per duel, I feel that Dandylion deserves the banhammer more.
Morphing Jar: Self-touch solitaire decks like Empty Jar shouldn't even be part of the game imo (personal bias alert!!). I'm bumping a certain spell card back up to 2, so the Jar has to go.
Future Fusion: This card is the lynchpin of Allen Pennington's 1 card FTK. Banning this will unfortunately hurt Dragons, but some sacrifices have to be made for the greater good.
Mind Control: This has become too good, seeing as monsters stolen with it can be used as synchro or Xyz material.
Monster Reborn: This shouldn't have been unbanned to begin with IMO.
Pot of Avarice: You have to wait until you've loaded up your graveyard before you can use this, but inherently it's still an instant +1, and allows TCG players to recycle their Reborn Tengus.
Limiter Removal: Sees no play nowadays, but its sole purpose is to facilitate OTK's, something that I'm not an advocate of. Ban it.
Trap Dustshoot: I'm a little iffy on this one. At times it can flat-out win you the game, but it's another one of those 'always been legal' awesome cards. Is that enough justification to leave it as-is? Perhaps, but I wouldn't mind seeing it go.

The Agent of Creation Venus / Master Hyperion : Venus is arguably the heart of the Agent deck, and limiting it will force Agent players to expand their Agent lineup to include shittier monsters, which would have to be done in order to feed Master Hyperion. An Agent player will still be able to bring out Mystical Shine Balls with Venus at 1,  it just has to be used wisely. Alternatively it could be Master Hyperion (or possibly even Archlord Kristya ) that gets limited; I would be fine with doing that instead. After doing so well in the TCG (despite never outright winning a YCS), the OCG, and winning Worlds 2011, there's no way that this deck won't get hit in some way.
Evolzar Laggia: A monster similar to Legendary Six Samurai Shi-En, but with the tradeoff that it has an effect that can only be used once, but also a wider variety of things it can stop.
Wind-Up Zenmaighty / Wind-Up Rat: Hitting either one should put an end to that ridiculous turn 1 loop. Wind-Ups should still be playable, probably as a control deck of some sort. Furthermore, Wind-Up Shark, being a TCG exclusive, will still be at 3.
Rescue Rabbit: I don't think it will see much play anymore at 1, but at the same time it's too good to be kept at 3 (or even 2), as outside of the Dino Rabbit deck, it still has uses in stuff like HERO decks. The thing is that even when it gets banished by it's own effect, it can easily be brought out again by Tour Guide into Leviair (or lulzy stuff like Different Dimension Reincarnation), meaning that as soon as you can access the 1st Rabbit, you can continue to make do with recycling it. I was contemplating hitting Leviair, but most decks only have the space for 1 copy anyway.
Inzector Hornet: Between this and Inzector Dragonfly, Hornet is arguably the more likely to be hit. You really only need one in grave, so it must be used with caution. If it gets hit by D.D. Crow, you can always bring it back with Leviair the next turn, but it does slow the engine down, though not to the point where the theme becomes unplayable.
Judgment Dragon: Lightsworn is pretty inconsistent at the moment (potentially remedied below), but even then, JD is ridiculously broken.
Mystical Space Typhoon: If it's at 3 (or maybe even 2), nobody will bother playing alternatives like Dust Tornado. I'm not re-banning Heavy Storm either, so we can now return to the old days of 1 MST and 1 Heavy.
Wind-Up Factory: The amalgamation of Black Whirlwind (searchhhhhh) and Gateway of the Six (activates whenever either player fulfills the activation condition). Both the aforementioned cards are at 1.
Royal Tribute: Gravekeepers aren't doing anything in particular, but this card is just flat-out unfair. I would rather see it banned, but GK needs to retain some good cards, so that there would still be incentive to play it.

Lumina, Lightsworn Summoner: This might be a bit of a controversial choice. Is upping Lumina to 2 whilst bringing JD down to 1 a fair tradeoff? Hard to say, but bringing Lumina to 2 will at the very least help increase the consistency of the deck. Effect Veiler and Maxx "C" are widely-played counters to Lumina's effect anyway.
BW Kalut the Moon Shadow: I wanted to increase the playability of Blackwings, and between this and Gale, Kalut isn't nearly as splashable as Gale is.
Grapha: It's still searchable by Snoww, so it's not too bad of a choice. Regardless, this is not a theme that I wanted to leave untouched. It could even go to 1, but testing the waters with a semi-limit should be fine.
Thunder King Rai-Oh: Another potentially controversial choice. The best stun monster, it's been splashed in a plethora of main and side decks. It's just that good. Hitting it anymore than this would probably completely cripple stun decks, so I would want to try it out at the semi-limit level.
Emergency Teleport: Psychics could use a bit of a boost. Mind Master is already banned, and with Maxx "C" being so popular, it's potential for abuse isn't as high as it once was.
Book of Moon: Inherently a -1, it was probably brought down to 1 to help promote the Xyz monsters. We've had them for a while now, so I don't see any reason to keep Book at 1.
Ultimate Offering: It's really the only card I can hit to pre-emptively hurt Offering Gadgets, as hitting the Gadgets themselves would be absurd.

Summoner Monk: Saw no play, even when brought up to 2. Unlimit it and see what happens.
Primal Seed: I'm rebanana-ing BLS lol, though I suppose that's irrelevant, since it saw absolutely no play during this current format where BLS was legal.


Monday, January 16, 2012

Order of Chaos Sneak Peek Failure

Spoiler: I failed to acquire any of the new Wind-Up cards lol...

Sneak 1 @ The Connection Games & Comics
I pulled an ultra Giga-mantis and Creeping Darkness. I sold the Gigamantis for $10 lol, it's whatever. Some newb / noob (I can't tell which) packsacked a Tour Bus, and ended up trading it off to one of my friends for a few high-rarity blackwing cards and a bit of cash. Both parties walked away happy so w/e. One of my other friends pulled a Wind Up Shark, which is kewl.
As far as pulls went, I saw 2 Tour Bus, 1 Xyz Reborn, 1 White Dragon Ninja, at least 2 Zenmaity (both ultra), at least 2 Shark, at least 1 Rat, and at least 1 Hornet.
The big traders started to arrive so I knew it was over. GG, time to hit up the 2nd sneak.

Sneak 2 @ Metropolis Toys and Games
I have no idea why, but this Sneak cost $20 instead of $25 at the Connection lol. Can't complain. I ended up pulling Armor Ninjitsu Art of Rust Mist and an ultimate Ninja Grandmaster Hanzo, which is ok I guess. My friend who pulled the Shark at The Connection packed another Shark lol, as well as a Rat. What a guy.
Soon thereafter, I was engrossed in a transaction where I ended up walking away with an ulti Dark Armed and 2 Gold Reapers for a pretty good price, and as such missed out on acquiring Wind-Up stuff :( . One of my friends snagged an Ultra Zenmaighty and a Shark for $30, and as ridiculous as it may seem, one of my other friends got a Rat for $2 LOL. He had offered $10, but the guy misheard him, thought he had said $2, and agreed to it. Too good lol.
My friends and I had yet to decide on what to do, so since I really didn't care what the final decision would be, I ended up entering in the sneak peek tournament to kill time.

Round 1: LFN (Ninja / Photon sneak deck) vs Myo (Ninja idk sneak deck)
I win the dice roll
G1: I bring out big Photon guys and control with Photon Trident, pumping up my monsters and popping his traps.
G2: He gets out this Ninja Xyz (NOT the double attacker), but it's too big so I lose to it and some Inzector monster that when unequipped allows the previously equipped monster to attack directly.

My friends come up to me and tell me that we were going to go eat but allowed me to finish the match. Myo was put on tilt when he heard this, for if I was to defeat him, drop, and leave, his tiebreaks would be gg'ed.

G3: More of what happened in game 1. This game was pretty funny though, I played Dicephoon during his End Phase to pop his newly set backrow, but I ended up burning myself for 1000 lol. Eventually though, I drew into 2 of the Tridents and dropped both while killing his monster to deal an additional 1400 damage for game.
Oddly enough, throughout all 3 games, I never drew Hanzo lol.
Result: OXO

After the game, the conversation was kind of like this:
Myo: I want the mat
Me: lol
Myo: Aren't you leaving anyway?
Me: lolyup
Myo: Give me the win then! Come on man!

I could either be nice and give him the win, allowing him to continue to pursue victory, in the hopes of winning the Sneak Mat, glory, Star Chips, Duelist Points, and souls ...  or I could finish off this brave duelist, crushing his hopes and dreams!!!
I decided to build up good Karma and gave him the win, then left lol. Unfortunately, I don't think he ended up winning the mat =/. Hopefully this Karma buildup pays off lol.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Decklist: Shooting Quasar Dragon

Monsters (24)
3x Junk Synchron
3x Doppel Warrior
2x Quickdraw Synchron
2x Level Eater
1x Gorz
2x Tragoedia
1x Sangan
1x Lonefire Blossom
1x Dandylion
1x Spore
1x Glow Up Bulb
1x Unknown Synchron
1x Treeborn Frog
2x Effect Veiler
2x Maxx "C"

Spells (16)
3x Tuning
1x Reinforcement of the Army
1x Heavy Storm
1x Dark Hole
1x Monster Reborn
1x Mind Control
1x Pot of Avarice
1x Foolish Burial
1x One for One
1x Scapegoat
2x Enemy Controller
2x Mystical Space Typhoon

Extra (15)
1x Formelsynchron
1x T.G. Recipro Dragonfly
1x Armory Arm
1x T.G. Hyper Librarian
1x Ally of Justice Catastor
1x Junk Warrior
1x Drill Warrior
1x Brionac
1x Stardust Dragon
1x Scrap Dragon
1x Road Warrior
1x Junk Destroyer
1x Trishula
1x Shooting Star Dragon
1x Shooting Quasar Dragon

The entire goal of the deck is to bust out big synchros, preferably Shooting Quasar Dragon. As such, it has been built in such a way that it's focused on doing so as consistently as possible.
If you have any questions about the build, leave a comment :)

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Wind-Up Arsenal Zenmaio & Wind-Up Shark

Every time new cards with solid effects are released, there's almost guaranteed to be some hype surrounding them. It isn't always justified, of course (lol Voltanis & Crystal Seer). With the revealing of Wind-Up Shark and Wind-Up Arsenal Zenmaio, many have speculated that Shark alone should bump the deck to Tier 1, and with good reason.

Wind-Up Shark's level changing effect allows it's controller to make pretty much any Rank 3, 4, or 5 monster, whilst also triggering Wind Up Factory's search ability and Magician's tutoring ability, allowing the player to net plusses. What's scary is that with the inclusion of Shark, the deck now has an exponential amount of ways to carry out the feared "Wind Up Loop", discarding the bulk of your opponent's hand in one turn. Previously, builds relied for the most part on Tour Guide and/or Instant Fusion, the latter of which is no longer required, or alternatively took a radical spin and comprised themselves of a whole slew of random level 3 monsters like Marauding Captain and Gilasaurus of all things, to complement the Wind Up monster lineup, in an attempt to consistently pull off the Loop.
Granted, a Veiler or Maxx "C", the latter of which currently sees more play, could stop or at least deter you from herp-derping, but Shark's ability to become a Level 5 or remain a Level 4 allows one to conserve his or her Zenmightys (essential for the Loop), and instead overlay into a Rank 4 or Rank 5 monster, typically troublesome Xyz monsters like Utopia or Adreus / Tiras.
It's undeniably an overpowered card for the theme, as it's searchable through Factory and Sangan, easily tutored by Wind-Up Magician, and it's summoning condition is a joke. But you already knew that. Probably. I think.

The card which I don't see people talking more about is Wind-Up Arsenal Zenmaio. The Wind-Up archetype makes Rank 5 monsters fairly easily, so it's not like he'll be a pain to bring out. It's 2600 attack is solid, and upon reading it's effect, to detach an Xyz material to destroy 2 set cards, one may immediately presume that it's a decent but unnecessary card, as it's not a very backrow-intense format.
However, the funny thing is, probably one of the first things that come to mind when facing a Wind Up deck, is to set as many cards as you can IF you don't have the means to effectively stop the Loop (with stuff like Maxx "C", Effect Veiler, Fiendish Chain, Skill Drain, etc). This immediately makes Zenmaio very potent.
As such, after the Wind Up player has successfully conducted the loop to knock the remaining cards out of your hand, should you still have backrow left unactivated, or a set monster, he or she could simply finish off the special summon plays by bringing out Zenmaio to pop whatever you have left.

I was planning on playing this deck at YCS Long Beach, but with the unveiling of Shark, it's looking more and more likely (pending results at YCS Atlanta etc), that the deck will get hit by the banlist. That's not to say that it would become bad, it all depends on the severity of the banhammer. After all, Six Samurai had Gateway knocked to 1 last format, and was still pretty good (For the record, I'm not comparing Wind Up Factory to Gateway of the Six lol, Gateway is obviously better). Even if the loop becomes a lot harder to conduct, the deck as a whole should still function fine as a control deck, so I'll have to see what happens.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Pokemon Cities: Surrey BC 01/08/2012

After starting to play the Pokemon TCG again, I opted to attend the City Championship on January 8th in Surrey, British Columbia. It was my 1st real tournament, as I had previously only played casually with my friends, and attended the weekly League session just once last format.

As I only owned enough cards for one particular deck (the bulk of my stuff has been rotated out; RIP Gengar and Machamp), I entered the tournament with Reshiphlosion (Reshiram + Typhlosion), teching in 1-1-1 Kingdra Prime.
I'm not caught up with the game at all, my only preparation for this tournament was done by having my friends tell me about the decks I could expect to face and the general strategy of each, as well as briefly skimming through a list of decks that have topped each City Championship thus far.
I was fully aware that each of my games likely wouldn't be short, for I had no idea what any card did beyond the ones I already have in my deck or the ones in decks that my friends have used against me. As such, throughout the day I had to constantly ask to read each of my opponents pokemon to see what they did. Because of that, the bulk of my games went into time lol
Before Registration began, my friend Hikarusaii and I played some Yugioh, his Tour Guide Tengu Plants vs my Absolute Zero, trying to see if any of the pokemon players already gathered there would attempt to tell us that we were at the wrong event lolol, to which we had planned to put on a poker face and respond with a dead-serious "No" while blatantly summoning monsters and activating spells/traps. It didn't happen sadly, though some of the players who also played Yugioh came up to us to watch and/or chat.

Round 1: LFN (Reshiphlosion) vs Jonathan B. (Reshiboar)
I was fortunate enough to set up before he did, and controlled most of the game. After he searched out  Emboar (I still have no idea what it does and can't be bothered to look it up), I decided that it'd probably be better that it not see play, so I Pokemon Catcher'ed up his Pignite and killed it before he could evolve it lol. He eventually brought out this 2-in-1 pokemon card (Ho-Oh Legend or whatever) in the late game with Legend Box, but failed to accumulate any energy on it. At this point, I only had to take 2 more prize cards (you start with 6) to win, and I knew that killing a Legend would net 2 prizes, but I failed to see the play that would kill it in that very turn, and as such dismissed it as dead weight, as it had no energy attached and required 4 energy for it's attack. I subsequently searched out the wrong cards with Sage's Training, as I instead opted to focus on his other Pokemon. As such, the game dragged out for another turn before I won anyway, despite this misplay.
Result: O

Round 2: LFN (Reshiphlosion) vs Geoff F. (Durant)
All I knew about this matchup was that he was aiming to mill me out with Durant's attack. As soon as I saw that they had a weakness to fire types, I was thinking "lol I got this". However, my hand was ass, whereby I had to beatdown with a mere Cyndaquil for 2-3 turns before I could start to get set up, and it didn't help that his Durants milled most of my relevant Supporter cards. From the few useful supporters/trainers I drew into, he discarded a few of them with Weavile combined with Super Scoop Up. Whenever I finally killed a Durant, he conveniently had a Revive to bring it right back to the Bench, leading to constant discards of 4 cards off my deck every turn. Compounded with how I was using draw cards to in order to set up and bring out stronger pokemon that could one-shot his Durants, I eventually was unable to finish him off before I decked out. He played well though, I definitely give him credit for that, but it never feels good to lose a favorable matchup. He later made it into the Top Cut.
Result: X

Round 3: LFN (Reshiphlosion) vs Ricky G. (Magnezone / Eelectrik / Tornadus)
I distinctly remember that he went first and searched out all his important pokemon with Pokemon Collector, and sent out his Tornadus to establish the tempo of the game. He didn't draw into his Magnezones for quite some time, but it really didn't matter, as he repeatedly re-used his Pokemon Catcher with Junk Arm to drag out any Pokemon I benched that couldn't withstand Tornadus' attack, which dealt 80 damage in one go. He would then replenish his hand with Professor Juniper or Professor Oak's New Theory on his next turn and do it again.
I don't think I really had a chance at all this game lol, it was completely one-sided. It also didn't help that I whiffed on 2 Sage's Trainings, attempting to take relevant cards while dumping Fire energies for recursion with Typhlosion's ability, which failed because all I drew were mixtures of Trainers, Supporters, and Pokemon. He ended up topping in the end; evidently he knew what he was doing, and it showed.
Result: X

At this point I wasn't particularly happy with my record, but I don't think there was much I could do in either of my losses that could have potentially altered the outcome of the game, if at all. Of my other 3 friends who were also participating, one of them (Fortecross) had dropped, one (Hikarusaii) had a 2-1 record, and the other, Kos.3vil, who was also participating in his 1st tournament much like I was, was a solid 3-0, piloting the deck that's apparently nicknamed "Cake" (Coballion / ? / Kyurem / Electrode).

Round 4: LFN (Reshiphlosion) vs Ken (Reshiphlosion)
This was a mirror match, but our builds were noticeably different, where I played the 1-1-1 Kingdra Prime lineup, while he chose to include the Ninetales engine, which took up at least a 2-2 lineup worth of card space. I don't know if he was used to playing the mirror match or not, but he chose to use Typhlosion's ability to place energy on his Reshirams, which concurrently place damage counters on the targeted Pokemon as well. As such, they were damaged just enough to become one-shot kills for my own Reshirams. He was eventually left with Typhlosions that couldn't do anything and conceded.
Result: O

Round 5: LFN (Reshiphlosion) vs ??? (Zekrom / Eelectrik / Tornadus) (No Magnezone, and I'm sorry, but I forgot to write down your name lol)
He was equipping all his Zekroms with one of 2 item things, one of which reduced damage dealt to it by attacks by 20 each time, and one of which inflicted 20 damage when it gets attacked to the opponents pokemon, which was annoying. After I gradually took them all out, he failed to draw into outs, and as a result, his deck lost steam, and my guys kept tanking his remaining pokemon (all of which were weaker than Zekrom) to secure the win.
Result: O
Final Result: 3-2 

I finished one spot ahead of Hikarusaii, while Kos.3vil, due to shitty tiebreaks, just barely missed the Top Cut (highlighted) despite having a 4-1 record. Our friend Bernie also finished 3-2, sadly.
Overall though, I had a good time, and it was a good learning experience, so I'm pretty glad I went, despite the mediocre 3-2 record.
As for the deck itself, the deck ran fairly smoothly, with the exception of not seeing enough Fire energies at times. Occasionally I would use P.O.N.T. , Sage's Training, or Juniper and not draw into a single one, which adversely affected my plays. I'll have to tweak it a bit to fit an additional 1-2 Fire energies in, but it's pretty solid as a whole.


3 Reshiram
4-2-4 Typhlosion Prime
1-1-1 Kingdra Prime
1 Cleffa

4 Pokemon Collector
4 Professor Juniper
2 Professor Oak's New Theory
3 Sage's Training
2 Twins

1 Pokegear 3.0
2 Plus Power
4 Rare Candy
3 Junk Arm
3 Pokemon Catcher (BROKEN)
3 Pokemon Communication
1 Super Rod
1 Switch

8 Fire Energy
2 Rescue Energy

TL;DR Summary:
Pokemon blahblah
People you don't know blahblah
I win I lose I lose I win I win
Other Pokemon blahblah
Decklist blahblah
No Yugioh to be found. Well, a little. Barely.

Friday, January 6, 2012

Locals Reports 01/04 & 01/05/2012 Abridged

Without school nor work to occupy my time on the 4th, I decided to head out w/ my friends to a local in a neighbouring city. I had only been there twice before, and was still somewhat unsure of what to expect in terms of player turnout and the local meta. Unfortunately, they didn't have Turbo Pack 7 in yet.

A couple nights before, I had encountered an intriguing build of HEROes on DGZ. It was quite different from the norm, and looked very fun, so I modified the list to fit my preferences (notably dropping the 3rd Miracle Fusion to prevent clogging, dropping an Ice Edge for a 2nd E-Emergency Call, relegating 1 Super Polymerization to the side deck, and fitting in more traps), and decided I would play it without any prior testing. In short, it was not a good idea.
The deck was fairly straightforward and easy to play, but there were some rogue matchups I ended up facing that I didn't side, or barely sided, any answers for, and that proved to be my undoing. Glancing around the store, there were a bunch of Final Countdown and Exodia decks floating around as well; I would have hated to face one of those suicide bomber decks.

However, as some consolation, I did finally manage to pick up a Wind Up Zenmaines, which I needed, and a super Chain Disappearance for my Turbo Pack collection. Kewl.

The next day, I just didn't care much anymore about what I played, and brought my Shooting Quasar deck (Junk Doppel + Quickdraw + Plants + Level Eaters)  to my usual locals. This time around, Turbo Pack 7 was available... and I pulled Geartown, which I promptly gave away to my friend.
After grinding out wins against Miracle Hero Stun and Gladiator Beasts, which are 2 decently unfavorable matchups IMO, I ended up losing to my friend Seb's Dino Rabbit deck, a legitimate loss.
I then had to face my friend CQiao, who was piloting some sort of Darklord deck that apparently works pretty well. He dropped the 2 card combo of Valhalla + Kristya on me in the early stages of game 1, to which I quipped that I would have to draw Dark Hole as my only out. I then played Tuning to search out a monster and thin my deck, and was like "Lol, if I mill Dark Hole off this Tuning, I lose." I milled a card. It was Dark Hole...!! LOOOOLLLLLLSCOOPITUP
I managed to eke out wins in Games 2 and 3 to achieve victory, but in the last round, I was defeated in game 1 when my opponent decided that it would be a good idea, being at 700 LP, to go balls to the wall and push through Maxx C in order to dump 4 fairies and drop an Archlord Kristya. If I had Dark Hole in hand to begin with, or had drawn it (or Mind Control) amongst the 6 or more cards he allowed me to draw, he would have lost. As for Game 2, I was locked under Gozen Match for the longest time, seeing as my Heavy Storm got Solemn'ed, and I failed to draw any of my 3 MST's until it was too late. Eventually my life points were too low, and despite correctly reading Mirror Force and not attacking with Caius, moments ago, I had gone with a 50/50 gamble and banished his Venus instead of his Earth, knowing that he plays Tour Guide and seeing as Venus is a level 3, but he instead summoned a live Reborn Tengu to synch with Earth, and that was it for me. Very demoralizing.

I'll probably get the Quasar deck posted up early next week, and in the meantime I guess I'll work on other deck ideas and continue to accumulate cards in preparation for Order of Chaos.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Turbo Pack 7 revealed

Well, this is interesting.
Pictures will be included when available.

Ultimate (1/1)

Ultra (1/1)

Super (4/4)

Rares (6/6)

Big Evolution Pill
Primal Seed
Some Sauce

Commons (9/9)
Serpent Knight Dragon
Herald of Orange Light
BW Sirocco the Dawn
Goe Goe the Gallant Ninja
Ninjitsu Art of Transformation
Ninjitsu Art of Decoy