Sunday, 30 October 2011

Deep Sea Diva. Why are you not using it?

Another blog entry from the TCG lover. This is just a casual blog entry to talk about Deep Sea Diva.

This card has been around for a while, and like many cards in our card pool, they get better with age. When Deep Sea Diva came out in Raging Battle, it was designed to be used with the other sea serpents in the set, like Spined Gillman. It was a support card for a very unsupported archetype, and if there was ever a sea serpent deck, Diva would be in it.

With it, you can drag out a monster from your deck. Sounds familiar to another card we all know doesn't it?

You know. It's a little girl with red hair and works in tourism. Specialises in one particular area; THE UNDERWORLD.

Yes. Tour Guide is probably one of the most powerful meta cards currently being played. Billy Brake (1st at YCS Columbus) used it, Alistair Albans (2nd) used it. Over half of the Top 32 used 3 of them. It's that good. However I, like most of the playerbase, have a life and the majority of our funds go to things that are a necessity. I would just like to say that if you devote your money into this game to play competitively, then I do not have any problems with that. It's really your money and if you want to spend $500+ on a playset of Tour Guides, then be my guest.

But I'm not one of those people. I look for alternatives and as far as I can see, Deep Sea Diva is a great alternative.

Here's what Tour Guide can do:
  1. Special summon a Sangan or another copy of it.
  2. Xyz into a Rank 3, mainly leviair
  3. It can be fodder for Black Luster Soldier, Chaos Sorcerer or whatever you want
  4. Poke for 1000
  5. Make grown men yank their junk in a YCS (I don't actually know if this happens, but I guess I will be able to confirm that at YCS Brighton)
Now, here is what Deep Sea Diva can do:
  1. Special summon any Sea Serpent below level 3 which includes a copy of itself
  2. Xyz into a Rank 2. Gachi Gachi anyone?
  3. Synchro into a level 5. Librarian/Catastor/Android anyone?
  4. Fodder for Miracle fusion, which is what I use it for when it hits the grave.
Now that's been listed, lets see what they can fetch from the deck.

Tour Guide: Itself, Sangan (best generic searcher), Broww, Huntsman of Dark World (Bounce for Grapha, discard for a +1), Dark Resonator (Cannot be used for a synchro summon, but can stay on the field a while), Koa'ki Meiru Doom (Negates the hell out of so many cards this format).

Deep Sea Diva: Itself, Lost Blue Breaker (pop a backrow with it), Spined Gillman (Decent 1700 beater), Gishki Diviner (Good +1 if you guess it right)

But the main reason why I compare them is because while in many situations they are different, in some situations Deep Sea Diva is the better card. Simple as that. But it's been proven that Tour Guide overall is the better card to use, but that's not what I'm saying. Deep sea diva can make a quick synchro monster OR xyz into a Gachi Gachi OR get rid of back rows. It's ALMOST as versatile as Tour Guide yet it does not get the play it deserves. If you use the same layout that you do with Tour Guide (3TG + 1 Sangan), then you can toolbox Deep Sea Diva just as well. Because lets face it, Leviathan Dragon is a bad card. You made a 2500 vanilla (almost) with two $200 cards. Here's an idea: why not use a $3 rare and make catastor? One of them is prone to anything with a bit of muscle, and the other is almost Invincible in battle.

Seriously, It's a really good card. The amount of times I've been left with a level 4 on the field and nothing else. I topdeck Diva and just like that, the game has been turned around with a Trishula. 

Keep in mind that I only suggest this alternative to players who cannot afford Tour Guide. If you have the money, Tour Guide FTW.

Saturday, 29 October 2011

Discussion: "Which is the best level 8 synchro monster?" poll

Thanks to everyone that voted on my poll. The Question asked what you thought is the best level 8 synchro monster and here is the results:

Out of 195 votes:

  • 104 (53%) voted Stardust Dragon
  • 46 (23%) voted Scrap Dragon
  • 7 (3%) voted Black-Winged Dragon
  • 7 (3%) voted Crimson Blader
  • 5 (2%) voted Red Dragon Archfiend
  • Chaos Goddess, Life Stream Dragon, Junk Destroyer and Colossal Fighter got 4 votes each (2% each)
  • 1 person voted Dark end dragon 
  • 9 voted Other (monsters like Black Brutdrago etc)
So to make this discussion less redundant, I'll only talk about the monsters with the highest votes: Stardust Dragon and Scrap Dragon

Stardust dragon. There is no wonder in my mind why it received over half the total votes. Since it's d├ębut in The beginning of the Synchro era, it's single handedly changed the way people have played the game. It's ability to negate an opponent's card and return in the end phase means it is a perfect way to protect yourself from your opponent's cards. Every player runs some kind of card that destroys, and that means stardust poses a threat to every person's deck. It stops some of the most powerful cards in the current metagame like Dark Hole, Torrential Tribute and Mirror force. But it's not tied to spells and traps. It can negate monster effects that destroy, like Dark Armed Dragon and Judgment Dragon. Time and time again, Yusei showed how useful stardust dragon can be and it's one of the only anime cards that is playable. About a year and a half later, Starlight Road was released, which gave stardust an easy way to hit the field and save your ass. The only drawback to summoning it this way was that you couldn't bring it back at the end phase, but that's no big deal. Stardust does suffer from a low base attack for it's level, so it's not invincible and can be ran over by most boss monsters in the game. But because of that, it restricts your opponent's options and makes cards in their hand useless until stardust is dealt with.

Scrap dragon arrived into the TCG in August 2010. While belonging to the Scrap Archetype, the card proved to be easy to summon (1 generic tuner + 1 or more generic non tuners!) outside of the archetype. It was also the only level 8 synchro with a good ignition effect: something level 8s had been lacking since then. It's ability to pop a card you control and one your opponent controls means you can take out the most threatening card your opponent has and slap them for up to 2800 damage. You also get the choice to plus off the effect by destroying something like Sangan or Card Trooper on your side and get their effects. It meant that many OTK options were now avaliable in certain decks that could make level 8s easier. While it's second effect was only usable within the archetype, it's worth mentioning. It can special summon another scrap monster for another synchro summon next turn, which means Scrap Dragon can keep coming back if you special summon Scrap Golem.

The other monsters in the poll obviously did not have as much of an effect on the playerbase compared to Stardust and Scrap Dragon. Some of them were pretty bad, like Black Winged Dragon. But now that the Synchro era has ended, we can now reflect on how they have raised the game to a new level. It allows some decks to be competitive and others to be easily countered. There is a Synchro monster for almost any situation imaginable. It's a shame we can only use 15, eh?

Thursday, 27 October 2011

Yu-Gi-Oh Card Review: Wind-Up Rabbit

It's been a while, I know. Anyway it's just over a week to go until the Photon Shockwave Sneak Peek. If you check the YuGiOh Wikia, you will see that the OCG imports have been announced (Or more likely, guessed), and they are looking good. Gishki, Laval and especially METAION the freakin' time lord are all making their debut in this set, which is a really awesome. They will probably be stupid rarities, but at least it's there.

Anyway, to continue with the TCG Exclusives, we have Wind-Up Rabbit

This mechanical rabbit hits the field (Or more likely, returns) at 1400 attack and 600 defence. Being level 3, that's not too bad. It's got the power to get over most small monsters (Die Tour Guide, die!). But as this is a rabbit, it's effect allows it to be very nimble indeed.

During either player's turn: you can target one face up Wind-Up you control and banish it until your next standby phase. This effect can only be used once while this card is face up on the field.

So essentially, you can use this card's effect to dodge something, whether it be a Torrential, Mirror Force or a Book of Moon. It cannot dodge a Solemn Warning however (But I'm sure you knew that).

But once you start to understand the archetype, the card just gets better every time you look at it. This card means that you can banish itself or any other Wind-Up, and when the monster returns, you can reuse the card's effect. If you banish rabbit however, it can come back, and keep saving itself from getting destroyed. This makes it a very good card. You can return it to the field on your next turn, summon another level 3 and go into Wind-Up Zenmaines or any other Rank 3 that you wish (But Zenmaines is probably best).

Combined with Wind-up factory and Wind-up magician, you can remove Rabbit and then factory allows you to search for a Wind-Up, and Magician lets you special summon one from your deck. All that tasty advantage, and it comes back next turn.

Now what else is there to do with it? Well lets think about card's outside the archetype it can work with. It works under Pot of Duality since it does not special summon itself (a good way to turn the game around and get back some field advantage). It works with Horn of the Phantom Beast, turning it into a 2200 beater which is not too shabby. Leviair the Sea Dragon can bring it back, and you can use it's effect again if you wanted to.

There is really nothing bad to say about this card. You can argue that it's a bad normal summon since it does not provide any advantage when you do, but you plus as soon as you dodge something, so it's worth getting it on the field in any means necessary.

Now Konami decided it would be funny to make this card a Secret Rare. This card is really useful for the deck and up to this point, all the cards were incredibly easy to get (Zenmaister might have been a pain, but it was reprinted like 3 weeks after). But this card's versatility in the deck and as a tech card outside of the archetype's walls means that it could go for around £15-20 ($20-25) and I'm not stating the price at the sneak, I mean after it tanks.

Anyway I think it's time to review some of the imports. Next up will be Metaion!

Tuesday, 11 October 2011

Yu-Gi-Oh Card Review: Photon Sabre Tiger

There are other exclusives I wanted to review first, but since their effects are unconfirmed as of now, there seems to be no point in reviewing them. There is one that has been confirmed though, and it's one of the many ways that Konami is trying to make Galaxy-Eyes Photon Dragon more playable.

Today's card is Photon Sabre Tiger

Sabre no Swiping! 
Sabre no Swiping!

This level 3 LIGHT monster is part of the Photon archetype and has 2000 attack and 300 defence. That's pretty good stats for a level 3 don't you think? It must have some kind of downside to counter that incredible attack power.
It does, but it's nothing too bad.

When this card is normal or flipped summoned, you can add one "Photon Sabre Tiger" from your deck to your hand. If you do not control any other "Photon Sabre Tiger", this card drops down to 1200 attack.

This card is intended to be used with Galaxy eyes. If you have 2 of them on the field, they are both going to be 2000 attack. Then you can tribute them to special summon galaxy eyes. It requires a 2 turn setup but at least you don't waste 3 cards in your hand to do it.

So yeah, on it's own its 1200. You replace the tiger you just summoned so its essentially like Yellow Gadget in terms of attack power (The only difference is that Tiger does not get its effect when special summoned). So with Tiger now on the field, you will pretty much need to protect it for a turn while it's in it's weaker attack, otherwise your opponent will have trouble taking down 2 2000 attackers. Also, if you have 2 on your field, you have the opportunity to xyz into a rank 3 if you know your opponent can take one of them out on their turn.

Now for it's downsides. As I've said, if one of them dies, then the other will drop down to 1200 (unless you have all 3 on the field, then you're fine). Another is that it's quite slow. If you plan on using them for an xyz or galaxy eyes, then that's fine. But it does require you to use up your normal summon to get it's effect and that would rather be invested in something more advantageous, like Tour Guide or Goblindbergh. You can flip summon it, but at 300 defence, that's not really a good idea.

Anyway that's enough said on this mediocre exclusive. As for the price of it, it's almost assured to be a super rare and since you need 3 of them to use it, it could hover at around £5 (about $5 too), comparable to something like Naturia Cherries.

Next up for review will be something like Wind-Up Rabbit or Dark Smog, but only when their effects get confirmed. But for now I'll review one of the OCG imports.

Friday, 7 October 2011

Yu-Gi-Oh Card Review: Evolzar Dolkka

Hello everyone. Konami announced a bunch of exclusives a few days ago (about a day after my last card review) and because of that, I've got a lot to talk about over the next few days. One of the most impressive exclusives is an xyz that fills in where Evolzar Laggia cannot reach.

Meet it's weird looking brother, Evolzar Dolkka

Sorry about the Quality! 

This card has 2300 attack, 1700 defence and requires 2 level 4 dinosaurs as it's materials. What this means is that when you have the materials on your field, you have a choice of either of the two xyz, depending on the situation. This card can hit the one thing that Laggia's effect cannot:

When an effect monster's effect activates, you can detach 2 xyz materials from this card to negate the effect and destroy the monster.
So with Laggia and Dolkka on the field, you can negate absolutely anything (except for counter traps and that damn super polymerization). But enough about Laggia, this is a Dolkka review.

It can negate monster effects. Which means it can take out anything that relies on it's effect to be useful, like Breaker the Magical Warrior or so many other cards in the game. Plus once it's effect has been negated, the monster is destroyed, so you +1 at the very least (more if you destroy a synchro or xyz monster). The best cards to negate are definitely ones that require a discard to use it's effect, like Zombie Master, Lumina, Lightsworn Sorceress and if it ever comes back, Tribe Infecting Virus.

It's one of those cards that can slow own almost any played deck right now. If there's anything every deck has in common, it's that they all rely on monster effects in some form or another. This card craps all over that.

At first glance it would seem that Laggia is the better card though. It can hit more cards and negate the summon of the monster, so the effect will never happen. But Dolkka can make an impact on your opponent if their field presence is higher and you are trying to claim control. Simply put, it's an out for when you're losing, which is good since it does not take up any space in your main deck.

I kind of wish there was more I could think of to say. I doubt the 100 attack point difference makes no difference at the end of the day. But because of it's nature, one of them in your extra deck would do just fine (If you're playing the deck, of course.)

Now for the price. It's a secret rare, and while it's not a necessity for the deck, it's worth having if you are thinking of going to competitive tournaments with the deck, since it will up your chances of winning. So yeah, I would say around £35-40 ($45-50) at the sneak and maybe it will drop about £10-15 the months after.

Tuesday, 4 October 2011

Yu-Gi-Oh Card Review: D-Boyz

As promised, I'm reviewing the next exclusive to be revealed. It was announced yesterday evening, and boy, is it bad.

Introducing: the D-Boyz

 Fo' shizzle!

This DARK Fiend type monster is level 1 and has 100 attack and 1000 defense. There must be a cool effect to warrant running a card like this, right? Well, here comes the disappointment train.

FLIP: You can special summon any number of "D-Boyz" from your deck in face-up attack position. For each one summoned this way, you take 1000 damage.

So special summon 2 of them, and you lose at least a quarter of your life points. If you flip it during your turn, you now have 3 of them on your field to tribute them for whatever you want, whether it's Beast King Barbaros, Obelisk the Tormentor or one of the Wicked gods. And if you prefer to Xyz summon, you can make Galaxy Queen (Which also comes out in Photon Shockwave).

While I sound like I'm giving the card mad props, it's utter junk. 95% of the time, Flip effect monsters get flipped up by your opponent when they attack it. That means that 95% of the time, you will lose the D-Boyz getting flipped and be left with 2 on the field. And don't think that those 2 D-Boyz are a good wall, because you took 2000 damage, and they hit the field in attack mode. Also, since it's a flip effect, it gets crapped over by Nobleman of Crossout.

The worst thing though is that there are other cards in the game that do almost exactly the same thing, but better! Hero kid can special summon the other 2 copies by it's effect, and Naturia Cherries can get you the other 2 in defense mode (and they're tuners!).

At least it's dark though, so it's Dark Armed Dragon friendly.

Other than what's above, there's not much to say. It's a waste of an exclusive and a Secret rare, especially since you need 3 of them to use it's effect. I find the artwork funny since Konami usually focuses on history or futuristic stuff, but instead they have done a group of gangsters from the 90s.

It's price? It's obvious that it's a terrible card, but the power of a unique artwork can do a lot to a card's price. Before Tour Guide became a $120 card, It was $30 at the sneak simply because it had a girl on it. Now this card not only has a strange art, and you need 3, which always puts a card higher. Therefore i can see it being about $20.

Monday, 3 October 2011

"Which spell card is the most powerful back row removal card in the game" Poll

The poll actually closed a few days ago, i just wanted to be consistent with my blog entries.

Thanks to everyone that voted, here is what you guys voted:

- 30 (48%) said Heavy Storm
- 16 (25%) said Giant Trunade
- 4 (6%) said Mystical Space Typhoon
- 12 (19%) are awesome and like cookies.

Cookies are ridiculously overpowered. To 0 Konami, TO 0!!

Ok, now let's be serious. I'm not surprised that nearly half of you said Heavy storm. If you eliminate all the other cards in the game, Heavy storm is mathematically the most powerful and is capable of destroying the most backrow out of the three. Trunade cannot destroy anything, but that has not stopped it being banned.

Now lets put all the cards in the game back into the equation. If you play the game for a while, you will realize the power of each card and their uses. Heavy storm CAN eliminate all back row threats permanently, allowing you to plus off that card alone. Once your opponent takes a heavy storm, they are wide open for anything you throw at them. The obvious benefit over Giant Trunade is that if you cannot deal the final hit that turn, your opponent can't set everything on their turn again and stop any chance of dealing that hit. That's essentially what made last format a 'Set 5, go' format. Decks like T.G. Stun could summon a floater and protect it with 4-5 back row and laugh. It was not a fun format, to be completely honest. You had to leave 8-12 spots in your deck for traps OR run very resourceful monsters like Reborn Tengu (Which laughs at most played traps) or as said above, T.G.s.

However, Heavy Storm and MST dictates what many players put into their decks. Starlight Road thrives in a Heavy Storm format and it's what allows decks like Gravekeeper's and Dragunity to stay competitive. Chainable cards are more popular because of Heavy and 3 MST (A huge mistake by Konami) so you can plus off them. For example, your opponent activates Heavy storm and you chain Compulsory Evacuation Device on their Synchro or Xyz monster.

So while all back row removal cards have their weaknesses and strengths, Heavy Storm overall is the most potent and game changing one.

Surely we can agree that bringing MST down to 1 on the banlist would solve all problems. The last time this was so was back in March 2010. The two months before Infernity broke the game (In May) were a couple of the most diverse and fun months in Yu-Gi-Oh.