Sunday, July 31, 2011

Playtesting with Tsukuyomi

All I can say is that this might be the new defense deck to beat, in which it's drawback is to misride. Other than that, her ability to potentially get a +2 ,removing dead cards from the player's hand and recycling heal triggers back to the deck after insane deck-thinning is certainly a way to increase the guard, further backed up with a 11000 base to boot and increases the chance of triggering a heal (most annoying part). Ironically, this is one of the ways for OTT players to get the desired defensive playstyle they need (remember the horrible days of 8 draw triggers?)

My friend has been playtesting it with me lately and it kinda took me by surprise. Despite achieving my lock (currently testing a deck focusing on Sealed Dragon Brocade), he still has enough advantage to provide support for his units (particularly silent tom) and pressures me to a point where I have less cards in my hand.

In conclusion, there is potential for the Evolution mechanism to pave ways for new style of decks. At this rate, I might consider a Grade 1 rush using a Galahad Evolution engine. See how it goes.

Tourney Report: 29/07/2011 at Auntie Elsie Shop

Venue: Auntie Elsie Shop
Entry Fee: $1
Participants: 30+ (I couldn't be bothered to count lol)
Deck Used: Grade 1 Rush

Since it's a $1 tourney, I figured I might as well use a fun deck to play. Me and my friend decided to do the same. After all, we're just in it for the promo pack lol.

Match 1: Nova Grappler
He started first, Ride Queen Of Heart on top of Battleraiser and ends turn. The following turn, I dealt 4 damage since I got a crit. Opponent was stunned lol. Pushed the game from there.

Match 2: Spike Brother
He started first and I rushed him the following turn, dealing 2 damage since he blocked 1. He mis-ride and lingers at grade 1 for a while. Rushed him from there.

Match 3: Eugine - Tachikaze Paladin
He let me go up since he entered the tourney without getting a promo. I let him have mine in exchange for winning the group.

Swiss over, now Qualifing to top 4

Match 4: Spike Brother/ Scarlet Witch Koko
It was a best of 3 match. Lost the first match due to him racking up draws and heals, and further draw from Scarlet Witch Koko. For the next 2 matches, he made a few mistakes and I managed to get triggers along the way.

and now to top 4

Match 5: Allan - Oracle Think Tank
He had a terrible hand of grade 3's in his hand. I won even before he can ride the grade 3. Luck on my part. For the next 2 games, he adjusted his playstyle and managed to win both matches. I didn't trigger anything so no advantage there. Good game overall.

For match 6, the other OTT player was tired at this point. 3rd and 4th place prizes were 2 boosters and 1 booster respectively (yeah, i know, $1 tourney). I decided to give way to the kid and let him have 2 boosters. We didn't get any foils so yeah *inserts sad face* The players there were quite amused by my attempt to use a deck full of common cards (except tahr, he's rare but thats it). In the end, I emerged 4th out of the 30+ participants. Not bad for a common deck lol.

Here's the decklist:

4 EoA Bahr
4 Iron Tail Dragon
4 Dragon Monk Gojo
21 Grade 1 with 8000 power

1 Lizard Runner Conroe
4 Lizard Runner Ganlu
4 Dragon Dancer Monica
4 EoS Tahr
4 Demonic Dragon Monk Raksha

I figured a Kagero-based deck is best suited for the job, since I'm more familiar with Kagero than any other clan. It's mainly 15000 and 16000 beatdown, with combinations of 7000 and 8000, boosted with 8000. Even when the opponent triggers at damage check, they still have to guard 5000 when I attack, and they either take more damage or lose potential units (Grade1-2). I played no heal triggers as I figured I would dish out more damage and thus, the heal would never work anyway lol. 8 critical for the win. As booster 3 comes out, I'll increase the critical count to 12 to make it even more lethal. As of now, the draw and stand triggers can be interchanged to your liking. Feel free to experiment and see which style suits you best. It's cheap, fun and can dish out lots of damage.

*in the end, my friend got the Dragon from the Grand Blue clan (his 4th lol)*

Saturday, July 30, 2011

A Kagero Tutorial: Superior Ride ,Defensive Removal and Erasing Advantage

Truth be told, I don't really like the superior ride mechanism as the player will not gain advantage that turn. Though that's probably the drawback for riding a grade faster than the opponent.

By mathematical calculation it goes like this:
[-1(Ride from hand)] + [-2(Superior Ride Materials)] +[+2(Twin drive)] = -1 Overall

What I really want to share is the importance of the Superior Ride.

Firstly, it's the effects that comes with the Superior Ride.
EoV Aleph is able to refresh the CB. A highly promising skill to abuse with Berserk Dragon to get back the advantage lost from the superior ride. His CB4 to get +3000 and Critical+1 isn't s promising, but still an ability to put pressure on the opponent, especially at 4damage. As for Blazing Flare, his ability to retire 1 card by SB5 itself regains it's loss in advantage and it's ability to get +3000 from that gives it a chance to reach the 20000 borderline.

Secondly, it's the ability to rush all your Grade 3's out from your hand.
With the Superior Ride, you can call out your Grade 3' in your hand (that will probably remain dead in the hand) and join your attack force. This is important as you can maintain your Guard Size in your hand while continuing your attack. Without the Superior Ride, and stuck with a handful of Grade 3's n your hand, it is possible for the opponent to deal a heavy blow during the next turn. That 1 turn is important.

Defensive Removal

The Kagero Clan is known for the ability to retire the opponent's rear guard through effects. The thing to note is which unit to retire. There are a few Examples:

Destroying the rear guard that supports the vanguard
By doing this, you lower the strength of the opponent's vanguard, thus making it easier for you to guard against the vanguard. The opponent has to play a support to boost his vanguard (thus, losing a 5000 guard) or not boosting to maintain his Guard.

Breaking Perfect Number Setups
The plan is to destroy the rear guard that supports a unit that would reach perfect number. An example would be when you have Blazing Flare Dragon as a vanguard and the opponent has a rear guard silent tom boosted with Oracle Guardian Gemini (16000, perfect number against Blazing Flare). By destroying Gemini, Silent Tom is either a dead card that cannot hit your vanguard or your opponent is forced to play a rear guard from his hand (thus losing 5000-10000 guard) to make Silent tom effective again. Foreseeing this, your opponent would use the dead Silent tom to intercept. If that happens , during his turn, he has to play 2 cards (losing 5000-15000 guard) to maintain his attack force. And if your Kagero deck emphasises on critical, then your opponent's hand is limited to both guarding and attacking at the same time.

Destroying Intercept Units
Especially when attacking the opponent in a 5 damage situation, Berserk Dragon does his job well, by reducing the opponent's guard. This moves hits hard on players who depend on 10000 intercept.

A key thing to note is to best destroy the rear guard supports than the front rear guards themselves. This is because the front rear guards can be hit by your attacks. And by attacking his supports, he is forced to play more form his hand or has his units' power reduced.

Erasing Advantage

When attacking the opponent's vanguard during early game, do you notice that the opponent does not lose any card advantage (unless they guard)? If you attack their rear guard, it's a confirm -1 in card advantage for the opponent, as he loses that rear guard or uses cards in his hand to protect it.

As mentioned earlier, in Silent Tom Vs Blazing Flare, it explains how to make <10000 rear guards useless against your 10000 vanguard, by destroying their support. With Sealed Dragon Brocade, the Silent Tom is as good as dead as it cannot be used for Intercept. Thus, you can focus your attacks on the vanguard to apply more pressure to the opponent. If dealt with such a situation, the opponent would be forced to retire his Silent Tom to play a rear guard with 10000 power, overall still losing 1 card. With the presence of Brocade, it limits the opponent from playing grade 2s as it reduces the opponent's guard by doing so. And by destroying the support, the opponent can be forced to play another support from their hand, thus losing another 5000-10000 guard. Tejas and Kinnala does their job well here. And if the opponent plays a 10000 rear guard, you have the option to destroy that rear guard. Having Brocade on the field, the opponent will most likely protect that rear guard to maintain his attack force. Do note that this playing style doesn't require Overlord, thus you can make room for Berserk Dragon to expand your strategy or play Overlord himself.

During your turn, it is the time to gain advantage. If you have the chance to reduce the opponent's options to gain advantage next turn, do so. That is what I feel Kagero specialses in and that is why I play Kagero.

Evolution Mechanism

I'll just call it the evolution mechanism for now since there's no official name for this. Anyway, in my opinion, the mechanism itself is unique. Do note that when you ride from your deck this way, it is considered a +1 since you don't have to expand anything from your hand.

Then again, it is an 11000 vanguard we're talking about. There's bound to be some disadvantage when using them. Well, these 2 comes with a huge disadvantage, with both requiring the 3 cards in their soul. And for Paladin players, you have to give up your Barkgal for that, and I highly discourage that.

The safest way to play this mechanism, in my opinion, is to just play the grade 1 and 2, and bet for just that +1 advantage. A very good mechanism for decks that rely on Grade 3s. Have fun trying them out

*credit to kumacard for the scans :)*

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Rumors about the Nationals

Well, I reside in Singapore and I've heard rumors about a team tournament coming up

New TD Hype: Nova Grappler

With the new TDs out, might as well discuss about some new strategies Nova Grappler has to offer (All of em has awesome art IMO)

Gold Rutile Shenanigans
Gold Rutile's unflipping ability can be said to be more annoying and more threatening than Mr Invincible, though each card has it's own advantages. With at least 7000 support for Death Metal Droid, he can surpass the 20000 limit, which is considered powerful for a rear guard. This can be used to clear the opponent's rear guard of 10000 or lower or hitting the vanguard. Though when hitting the vanguard, either the opponent has to drop at least 15000 guard (at least 2 cards) or your CB is literally free thanks to Gold Rutile. Imagine 1CB to make the opponent drop 2 cards (laughs at Nubatama's face).

As for Genocide Joker (awesome art btw) his CB2 to reach 14000 is already enough to hit rear guards with 9000. And with a mere 6000 support, this guy can reach 20000. Again the threatening factor still applies with Joker+Rutile combo, making opponent drop at least 2 cards or refreshing 1 damage. The thing about Joker is that with 4CB and at least 7000 support, this guy can reach 25000, which is highly threatening when playing in the 5 damage zone. With a stand trigger , it makes him 23000, enough to make a dent at the vanguard, or even annoying 8000 rear guards like silent tom.

Gold Rutile isn't built in with as much power as the other 2 guys I mentioned, but his second ability is threatening as well. When his attack hits the vanguard, he can CB2 to stand his allies. That makes it all the more reason for the opponent to block his attack.

In conclusion, with the addition of Gold Rutile, Nova Grapplers have the edge to probably make it to the meta. Though I'll just have to wait and see how things unfold with the new cards.

As for me, I'll stick with Kagero anytime (Dragonic Overlord FTW).

Monday, July 11, 2011

Superior Ride issues 1: Demonic Dragon Berserker Yaksha

*mind boggling language is used. You have been warned*

Since I've discussed about Dinochaos's Superior ride mechanics, I figured I might as well discuss about Yaksha (probably the laughing stock of the Kagero clan)

Do note that if you use Berserk Dragon's effect when you ride him, you cannot jump Yaksha since the effect is activated in the Ride Phase. So a -1 for playing him from hand and a +2 for the twin drive, overall a +1. And if you used Berserk Dragon's effect, this results in a +2 overall. If it's Kinnala or Gatling Claw Dragon, overall a +1 but still that's advantage. (Wow suddenly Yaksha sounds good lol) Do note that it has a base of 9000 and that means 14000 baselines (which is easy to achieve) will beat him to a pulp. Imagine those Grade 1 units with (Soul Blast +3000) managing to give this thing trouble lol. Give it a try. Do it for the twin drive lol.

Tachikaze: How strong are they?

Since the clan has an upgrade in the second set and is receiving more support for the 3rd booster, I might as well write about them. They're surprisingly strong.

Starting VG: Dragon Egg
What's interesting about this card is that it's usefulness can be found even in mid-late game, unlike Barkgal (sorry Paladin). Though small as a support, it is still able to meet 15000 with the help of 11000 rear guards (In this case preferably Bombarding Dragon Cannongear). CB to maintain advantage and serve as 10000 shield in the later part of the game. You can even replace it with another RG for stronger support and still keep him in the hand. It basically makes "...retire one of your Tachikaze..." to "CB1"

Main Support: Wing Dragon Skypterra
No doubt one of the strong cards in the clan. Kagero can't do shit about you meeting 15000 or even 16000 baseline since the support cannot be sent to the drop zone that easily, due to it's effect. Even as second turn, when the opponent rides a 6000 VG, you can even use this to deal an extra damage and still not worry about losing card advantage. Used well with Tyrant Death Rex to meet 21000 baseline or even Bombarding Dragon Cannongear to meet summoning cost. It basically makes "...retire one of your Tachikaze..." to "CB1"

Shells pour down like rain,
on enemies and allies alike.
The Beater: Bombarding Dragon Cannongear
At first glance , I compared him with Genocide Jack since they are the only Grade 2's who has 11000 base power. Both have their own strengths and drawbacks. Meeting it's summoning cost isn't that hard since you'll have Dragon Egg from turn 1 to do the job. So it's summoning condition becomes CB1. Made just to combo with Dragon Egg for 15000 base. It's self boost as VG makes it meet 21000 with Sonic Noah.

Chaos crunches everything,
Chaotic Twin Bite!

Superior Ride? : Chaos Dragon Dinochaos
No doubt I compared him to the superior rides of Aleph and Blazing Flare Dragon at first glance. For both, its a -2 at the cost of CB1/CB2(if lucky) to get another +2 from the twin Drive. You thin your deck by 1 non-trigger and still lose a trigger at the same time. As for Dinochaos, you simply retire 2 RG to Superior ride him. Use Dragon Egg and Wing Dragon Skypterra and it'll be a CB2 for just a Superior Ride without losing advantage. So at CB2, the player manages to get +2 but still -1 for playing him from your hand. Overall +1 card advantage , compared to Blazing Flare/Aleph which is overall +0 card advantage. But compared to Aleph and Blazing Flare, this guy has no other special effects so that +1 probably makes up for it. Still a raw beater as a RG

The Killer VG: Tyrant Death Rex
A reason why "Death" is in it's name is because it literally spells death when the opponent is at 5 damage. With only a 6000 support (looks at Skyptera) it reaches 21000 baseline and any VG that can exceed 20000 baseline is worth playing. But the drawback is that the moment this guy hits, you have to retire a RG (looks at Skypterra). So how is this a beast at 5 damage? Well, at 5 damage, the moment this thing hits the opponent's VG, you'r opponent is dead so he'll probably use at least 15000 worth of shield or drop a nullifier (Isolde, Barri, Twin Blader etc). Slowly play and see how much advantage you rack up. Alternatively, the 20000 baseline can be used to crush important rear guards (Dragonic overlord, Bors) at a cost of CB1. Powerful card that can be exploited using other cards from the same clan.

The Tachikaze clan focuses on raw power while using CB to maintain card advantage. Currently, the clan needs to be combined with other clans to play. I didn't bother to write about Sonic Noah and Assault Dragon Blightops since they are generic and Blightops just sucks. Suggestions would be to combine with NovaGrappler or Kagerou. Grappler is because of Mr Invincible for CB supply and KingQueen combo. Kagero mainly because of Aermo to filter dead hands and Iron Tail Dragon to meet 25000 at CB3. More support is coming up in booster 3 so keep a lookout.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

10/07/2011 Lorong Ah Soo Tourney

Deck used: Kagerou

Venue: Lorong Ah Soo Card Shop

Match 1:
Jonas : Royal Paladin
The match was dragged till both players were at 4-5 damage. Throughout the match, I managed to trigger 3 Heal triggers so it's kinda lol. He managed to pull off brilliant 20000 and 21000 setups with Alfred and Bors respectively while I have Dragonic Overlord as my VG with 20000 setups as rear guards (Executioner - Bahr). Overall, good game. I was sweating throughout the match lol.

*thirsty at this point*

Match 2:
Eugine: Kagero
I mis-ride on the first turn and he managed to take it from there. The match dragged on to 5 damage each and I got Heal trigger on my 6th damage TWICE. It was truly a LOL moment since there were several cases of not able to guard fully (he has 20000 setup at VG while I have a 10000 VG). Still a loss is a loss

Match 3:
YS (not Yee Shean): Spike Brother
I went first and use Tejas to clear his "Conroe" and used Kinnala to clear his Dudley Dan. Managed to get off an Overlord+Stand so I managed to control him from there.

Match 4:
(name not known) : Kagero
He managed to pull of a Superior Ride at 1 Damage but I went for control by clearing his rear guard. It was a rally between hitting and guarding his RG Vortex Dragon "probably his only RG for offense at that point of time". Overlord CB failed but still managed to control for game.

Top 16 Match 5:
(name not known) : Royal Paladin
1): He pulled of successful 20000 and 21000 setups and beat for game
2): He mis-ride and superior ride later. he lost the advantage gained by Barkgal but still manages to hold on.Can't remember much , but there was a lot of Tejas action lol.
3) Half of his deck was in his soul in the middle of the game lol. Still, it was a long rally since we both triggered 2 heal triggers mid-game. Pulled off an Overlord-Stand and controlled from there. Overall , good game.

Top 8 Match 6:
Eugine (again) : Kagero
1) He superior ride at 1 damage and I can't remember much lol
2) I mis-ride and he took the game from there. Set up 20000 with Dragon Armored Knight + Bahr but still wasn't enough. Again, I got a Heal from 6th damage (happens everytime I play with him lol). Overall, good game.

(played this match because I do not want Captain Nightmist)
Top 8 Match 7:
(name not known) : Nova Grappler
1) He didn't have a grade 1 for 2 turns and I beat him from there
2) He rushed with Asura Kaiser and Genocide Jack. My 20000 setup wasn't effective against his 11000 VG. Genocide Joker is too strong.
3) He didn't have a Grade 3. Tejas action + Stand is awesome. Control by hitting rear guards slowly

Overall, it was tiring but I decided not to fight for the SSD and the Sealed Dragon Brocade was good enough since i needed it. Clinched 5th - 6th place. Not too bad. They all decided to stop at top 4 and split the prize from there. Only lost to Eugine today ;/ kind of a retribution for getting 6th damage Heal and last-minute Brocade the previous tourney that I played him.

Hell Spider: Probably one of the most underrated cards in the game

*Lozenge alternate art is hot btw*

I was flipping through KeroKero Ace on the way home from the vanguard tourney, looking at the sections previewing some cards from the next booster (Galahad, PaleMoon, DarkIrregular) and I stumbled upon a spread which shows the ratings of some cards in the meta. I was surprised that King of Knights,Alfred got a rating of 3/5 (as far as I can remember) and SSD, CEO and Blaster Blade got a rating of 4/5. The 2 cards which got a 5/5 rating is Dragonic Overlord (I'm so proud of u) and strangely, Hell Spider.

Coming from the earth,
the incarnation of evil!
Hell Spider!
He has a nice effect of 3000 boost when all of the opponent's rear guards are rested (in which the requirement is met most of the time). This allows Hell Spider to meet at least 20000 with at least a 7000 support. Any card that can meet the 20000 borderline is worth playing. Probably the trait which makes it a 5/5

His next effect, which is often compared to Blaster Blade and Berserk Dragon, is the ability to CB2 to select an opponent's rear guard and stop it from standing next turn . Do note that it is not restricted to grades (like BB and BerserkDragon). This means that you can use this effect on a rear guard supporting the opponent's VG, thus crippling his VG strength next turn, or choose a front rear guard that cannot intercept so that it cannot declare an attack next turn. One of the ways to override this effect is to manually retire your own RG so that you do not lose momentum. Though if that happens, Hell Spider has achieved a (Blaster Blade + Berserk Dragon) effect and the opponent has achieved a loss in card advantage.

So, what's the drawback of this card? Well, in my opinion, there is no drawback by using this card. it has an attack of 10000, which is enough to beat with, and has an effect that can cripple the opponent offense. For non-Kagero and Paladin decks, this card is a good addition to the deck.

Another would be Lady Bomb. Use her effect on the VG support, and still provide intercept when the opponent VG attacks, allowing you to drop a maximum of another 5000 guard. Truly a Hit-and-Run strategy.

I'll be testing this in Nova Grappler variants. I'll update when I've found a stable deck list.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Thoughts on new promo cards

Finally, a reason to enter tournaments again.

First off, Ceylan isn't that bad (though i wished his effect doesn't need CB and him being a 9000). Makes him+Marron meet 16000 baseline or other units with Marron support meet 16000 baseline. Art is way better than Akane

Dragonic Vanisher is unique that it is built to fight paladins (though i still wished his effect would activate when I have more RG than the opponent) The card screams 20000 baseline. Pairs up well with Sealed Dragon Brocade. Still, I would prefer Dragonic Executioner over him.

The highlight of the promo pack. Seahorse gives Grand Blue players a more combo-ish/ hand control style, dumping (Nightmist,Samurai Spirit,Spirit Exceed) to draw. Skull Dragon just made Grand Blue a pure beatdown (as if 10000 vanguard support wasn't enough) with 20000 setups, paired with Samurai Spirit at the rear guard. Ca't say that it's broken since Kagerou gets Dragonic Executioner and the other clans get their own Bors. Still, further support for other clans is a huge welcome.

OTT gets their own in-built Aermo, which is nice for player who would want to play 12 draw triggers lol. Sphere Magus is probably for loli-value. I'd stick with alternate art Lozenge Magus.

Overall, card quality is around the same as the previous promo pack. I'd keep Vanisher for collection purposes. Expect more Grand Blue in the future. I don't expect to see Paladin players splash Ceylan since he isn't as user friendly as Akane/Blaster Blade.

Cards that define the meta 2: CEO Amaterasu

First off, her +4000 effect allows players to meet 20000 baseline off the bat (even after overextending with 2 cards in hand) talk about annoying.

Secondly, her card check ability is too good. It ranges from (trigger check/attack planning) to getting the right cards in your hand. If you checked a Stand trigger and places it on top, all the more for you to abuse Dragonic Overlord, OG Apollon, Libra for advantage. And if you checked a card you need, you can place it on top and use Luck Bird/Dark Cat (for OTT) or DiscardDraw units (Gojou, Lian, Shout) to get it.

In my opinion, strong card is strong. I doubt they would make a stronger CEO in the future. I would play this card in my Kagero deck but I currently don't have the resources. Heck, I would suggest all decks to play her because she is THAT good.

Thoughts on The new trial decks

I apologise if there have been no recent posts. I have to make a trip to Korea and have to attend to school stuffs. But rest assured, this blog is still active

Now that that's out of the way, I would like to continue to discuss my thoughts about the new trial decks.

Nova Grappler: Gold Rutile, Death Metal Droid, Cannon Ball, Oasis Girl

The existence of DeathMetalDroid helps Nova grapplers reach the 20000 baseline without King Queen combo. And the abuse of DMD/Mr. Invincible is just too good. Oasis here fits as well to meet baselines of 16000 and 20000.

Gold Rutile is basically an alternative to Lion Heat, so expect Lion Heat's price to drop? Furthermore, with 20000 setups (DeathMetalDroid/KingQueen) viable in the deck, it's easy to trigger the unflip effect (Not to mention DeathMetalDroid is free in this case)

And Nova Grapplers get their 3rd Stand Trigger. NOw they dont have to mix clans to achieve 12 stands. (Wishes for a 3rd Stand/Critical for Kagerou)

OTT: Sakuya, MeteorBreakWizard, SwordsDancerAngel, DarkCat, Battle Sister Maple, Victory Maker

Sakuya is actualy a good (and unhealthy for the metagame) OTT card. Like CEO, it has the +4000 boost so meeting 21000 baseline wouldn't be a problem. And the bouncing rear guard effect allows the user to reset his field to meet baselines, and to reuse effects (DarkCat,LuckBird). Draw whore much?

MeteorBreak Wizard is another Borz, helps OTT player achieve a more beatdown play. Not Bad

Dark Cat is broken. Now, OTT players have their long awaited 7000 support. With the help of Cocoa and Circle Magus, OTT players have even more control over what they can get in their hand. This setup, on top of CEO, is just frustrating in my opinion. Expect Luck Bird to be seeing less play since this guy is a stronger version.

Battle Sister Maple and Swords Dancer Angel is bullshit in my opinion so i wouldn't bother about them.

Oh, and they get their 3rd draw trigger. I wouldn't imagine 12 Draw 4 Luck Bird and 4 Dark Cat. They are just asking for library death lol.

Overall, great additions to the 2 clans, on top of more from the next booster. I wouldn't mind making a cheap Invincible/DMD/OasisGirl deck focused on 20000 beat.