Tuesday, August 26, 2014

The Good, The Bad, and The Trugly

Trugly [trǝ-glē] adjective ( truglier, turgliest): (in Yugioh) infuriating yet ineffectual; purposely unpleasant; intentionally disagreeable and unaesthetic.  Contraction of troll and ugly.  “Can you believe he played Self-Destruct Button? It’s trugly”.  

After only a handful of duels, I have come to one rather obvious conclusion: Destroying a card and sending it to the graveyard is a bad idea.  Remember when this was the object of the game?  Now when you run over a monster you go – 1.  The graveyard has gone from a source of occasional monsters (e.g. Zombies) to a second hand (e.g. Droolers) to the land of magical effects.  Any doubters should feel free to take on the Yang Zing, a name more befitting the Chinese mafia than mirthful European dragons.  

The best tech cards against these archetypes have been (surprise) limited.  It’s as if the haruspices at Konami prepared us for this revolution by reigning in D Fissure, M Cosmos, and Soul Drain.  Still, there are over 6,000 cards in the Yugiverse.  Maybe a few were overlooked.  So with my rage-against-the-machine mindset, I set out to find cards to shut these decks down.  

My search for the next great tech card began by looking at all the cards with “return” or “to the deck” in their description.  This strategy revealed 573 cards.  348 of these cards were monsters, which I set aside for another post.  That left 225 candidate spells and traps.  This list was further pared down by eliminating archetype specific cards such as Spellbook of Fate and anything to do with Glad Beasts. The card also had to include monsters as targets. 

I was left with seven spell cards, none of which are worth playing. The list includes four cards that are specific for Extra-Deck monsters (De-Synchro, De-Fusion, XYZ Encore, and Intercept Wave) and Quill Pen of Guildos.  I also came across Dracocension, which gives Wyrm-type monsters the ability to put opponent monsters back in the deck.  Mercifully, it requires a tribute of a dragon-type, which probably makes it too awkward to use.  Out of the Blue was the only truly trugly card.  This continuous spell card can return all of the graveyard cards back into the deck.  It’s a card that creates wonderful Yugi-fantasies against decks like the Satellarknights that are prone to abusing COTH.  However, it is too situational for competitive play. 

The trap selection was a bit more promising. 15 traps put cards either back in the deck or in the hand.  These break down as follows:

The Good:  Good cards are good, which is tautologically equivalent to saying good cards are played.  This list is well known to anyone who has opened a pack in the past six weeks.  It includes CED, Phoenix Wing Wind Blast, and Time Space Trap Hole.  However, there were a few hidden treasures.  

 Liberty at Last! is my favorite.  The card declares your freedom against the tyranny of graveyard effects!  Few cards allow you to put cards back into the deck; never mind two of them.  It is a battle trap but this card had real potential.

Battleguard Howling and Rage are designed to help warriors.  Of the two, I like Rage better since it is a continuous trap card that boosts a monster’s attack points. Imagine Absolute Zero with 3500 AP.  The monster that is being attacked is neither being targeted or destroyed by this card, which gets around a bucket full of monster effects. 

The Bad:  Most of the bad cards earn their spot on the list by making you lose card advantage.  If that’s not bad enough, they also tend to be situational.  Forced Back only applies to normal and flip summons; Spiritual Wind Art, Super Rush Recklessly, and A Major Upset all require specific tributes.  Mispolymerization has minor potential as a CED against Shaddolls.  I suspect it will lose to the faster De-Fusion, despite that card’s talent for bringing back materials.  Cash Back gets a few points for being a counter-trap but then loses them to its situational play.  How many monster effects require the controller to pay life points?  
The trugliest of them all

The Trugly: Face it – most troll cards are continuous.  Cards like Skill Drain, Macro Cosmos, and Dimensional Fissure all say “You can’t do anything until you deal with me”.  Unlike cards you can only activate once, these cards take little skill.  Draw it; play it; and laugh.  

The trugly return cards are also continuous traps.  This list includes Dice-nied, Ordeal of a Traveler, and Begone, Knave.   The first two are too strange even for me.  Begone, Knave, on the other hand, has always piqued my curiosity.  The card made a brief appearance with Mist Valley Falcon.  Declare an attack, put B Knave in your hand, attack, and then reset B Knave.  I would call the experience infuriating and ineffectual. 

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