Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Life in the Meta

“So meta” (pronounced MAY-ta, with a hint of condescension and irony). 

This was the catch phrase floating around our local this weekend when anyone played a standard deck or a staple card.  

There was lots of meta and I was hip deep in it.  

Geargias used to have a puckish kind of feel. They were good enough to pop up with tops in regionals and the occasional YCS. The archetype also had its advocates in good players like Sam Pedigo.  Nevertheless, swarms of dragons kept the deck out of the spot light and under the radar. 

I liked under the radar. Up until this week, I played only one mirror match in two years. Heck, I’ve played against more Gadgets than Gears.  Opponents used to drop Maxx C on Armor only to watch it roll over.  Bringing out Geargiano with GearGigant X almost always prompted players to pick up the card … “Wait, it does that too?”  With the exception of Maxx C, almost no one had counter cards in their side deck.  

Those days are gone. I counted four gearheads besides myself at a 12 person tournament this weekend.  Their builds were almost identical with the exception of Big Eyes and Dracossacks.  With recent reprints of Burei and GearGigant X, the deck is reasonably priced.  Given the similarity in builds*, putting the deck together is easy.  So why not play it?  It’s a fun deck … believe me I know.  

I’m not against bandwagons and I don’t resent these players.  Quite frankly, I wish all Yugioh cards were accessible to all players.  However, I don’t expect this trend to last.  Many of these players will probably jump to Hieratic Rulers, which gives Geargias all sorts of headaches.  Yes, my friend, Skill Drain is a card and it’s getting mained in these Hurler builds.  Builds that main Kaiser Coliseum will also slow us down. Though I didn’t fully anticipate the rise of Hieratics, I still maintain that Bujins will be a challenge.  Put Yamato in the Kaiser’s home and our wee little monsters our grinding their gears.  Even without the Coliseum, Bujins are tough. 

 More ominous is the coming of the Cyber Dragon structure deck.  I don’t believe Auger can dig far enough underground to save us from getting Chimerateched.  So to all those who love Geargias, enjoy your moment in the sun. Our time on the national Yugioh stage will be brief, like so many decks before. 

So can we top YCS Atlanta?  This event is going to be a free-for-all.  Gone are the days when a new set would have limited immediate impact on the meta.  Today’s players can test new cards long before they are released. As a result, decks with new support like Bujins, Gravekeepers, Chronomalies, and Ghostricks are ready to shine. Though the hurlers will likely be out in numbers, you could face a lot of decks on your way to Yugioh glory. 

Here are my personal techs for the upcoming YCS

  1. Machina Gearframe (1) and Fortress (1): Having one of each is an old OCG Gadget trick.  Since GearGigant can search for Gearframe, you usually have a Gearframe target.  Gearframe can also attach to GearGigant and protect him for a turn, giving you another +1. However, the real reason to use Fortress is that it works under Skill Drain. 
  2.  Card Car D instead of Upstart Goblin: I never have liked Upstart. Giving a 2,000 LP to your opponent can eliminate the OTK potential of the deck.  CCD gets you a + 1 that makes up for minuses with Fortress and Skill Drain doesn’t touch it.  It also can be used to summon Fortress and removed to summon Redox.  
  3.  Colossal Fighter in the extra deck: Colossal is another answer to Skill Drain.  He can keep you out of trouble long enough to draw some outs. He’s also another reason that I favor COTH over Iron Call.  
  4. Creature Swap in the side: I’m not sure why this card isn’t played in this deck. Swapping an Accelerator is a +1. It’s also an answer for an MKII that is left in attack position.  Cards that are “non-targeting, non-destructive” have a real advantage.  

I’m still tweaking and working the deck**.  I’m not sure if I like these ideas because they are better or because they are mine.  More to come as the March to Atlanta continues.

* See my post on Innovation in Deck Building 12/24/13
** Is that the same thing as twerking?


  1. I laughed hard at the twerking part lol. Good luck in Atlanta! And the ARGCS in Charlotte, if you're going to that.

  2. Thanks ... sorry I didn't get the link to your Blog working right away. I think its fixed now.