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 Return of the Duelist partial review (57/87)

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PostSubject: Return of the Duelist partial review (57/87)   Fri Mar 30, 2012 8:49 am

Return of the Duelist (57/87)
(olive colour until I find the time to make the links non-white...)
Like all "Duelist" titled sets, this one starts a new series of sets (its number is 801), but from what is already seen, unlike all "Duelist" sets before it, this does not seem to be bringing something to the top tier table, at least with 57 cards of it revealed. However it does bring plenty of interesting things and decks that will often be seen in the lower tiers.

First of all, here is the shriek page http://shriek.twoday.net/stories/59213592/ to be able to view the effects as we go along, while the cards reviewed will be clickable wikia links and let's begin with the archtypes introduced.

Heroics don't seem to have any impact at all, save from their Xyz. Other than that there is Heroic Challenger Double Lance which is a self based engine (works with itself and therefore has little need for external support, making basic engines with as little as 3 cards) that special summons another copy of itself from the hand, or more importantly graveyard, but only allows for the xyz summon of a Warrior-Type monster, which is not a really bad place to be though as rank 4 warrior monsters include Utopia, Blade Armor Ninja, and the themed Heroic Champion Excalibur. It also seems now that there are starting to be restrictions on Xyz summoning, something to tone down abuse and a sign that Xyz super boosting is being toned down as Xyz monsters seem to be catching up quite well to the metagame.

And while still on the Heroic archetype, let's get into Heroic Champion Excalibur.
It requires 2 warrior type monsters, meaning it doesn't fit in every extra deck, but only in those that could have Blade Armor Ninja, and its effect requires detaching both of those materials to activate, so it can be activated only once. Said effect says that its original attack of 2000 is doubled until your opponent's next end phase.
The card does seem at first glance mediocre unless you are too excitable a person. However, after that, provided you already went past the excitability, remember that it is an xyz monster, which means that in warrior decks it is simple to summon. The ability to run over anything in your warrior deck (gemini beat, six sams, etc.) by using 2 level 4 monsters is a big deal when xyz toolboxing. Now your stratos into bubbleman can actually run over Black Luster Soldier - Envoy of the Beggining and other similar pains in the behind, and the same of course applies to your Kizans etc.

OOPArts


Next we have OOPArts, an archtype most became familiar either with the FTK starter Number 6: OOPArts Atlanthal (not in this set) and the card nour showed us, Number 33: OOPArts Super Weapon - Machu Mach.
This is indeed an interesting archtype, albeit the second weakest of the interesting ones, at least alone as it does enjoy some support and has compact engines in it. Let's start with its cards.
Mayan Machine is pointless, at least with what we have, so let's skip to the next, which is a little less pointless.
OOPArts Colossal Head. Collosal Head reminds of A/D Changer. By banishing it from the graveyard you can target a lv3 or higher attack position monster on the field (you'll get why lv3 or higher if you think about it) and change it to either face down defense position or face up defence position . It's a lv4, rock, earth monster with 1600 defense and uninteresting attack. It seems the point of it is something like getting around Golden Shuttle's effect and using a graveyard effect since they have external support that mills (will note in the end), but not exactly that useful outside of special combos.

Moving on to the rest of the archtype which does have a point.
OOPArts Crystal Bone is a simple card, if you don't have any monsters but your opponent does you can special summon it, when you do special summon it like that you can special summon from your hand or graveyard another OOPArts monster. The point is simple, 141 Xyz without wasting your normal summon. The card itself is a lv3 rock-type LIGHT monster, so getting another lv3 will get you there.
And the other lv3 here is OOPArts Crystal Skull, a good card in the archtype. If you have a face up OOPArts, you can discard the skull from your hand to search another OOPArts from your deck, or even add one from your graveyard to your hand. You can't add itself and that effect can only be activated once per turn. The unfortunate thing here is the wording of Crystal Bone. Crystal Bone may seem convenient, and it is really, but it's made to be harder to use with the rest of the archtype, as it requires no monsters on the field while the other cards work better with a monster on the field, like Crystal Skull itself, golden shuttle and moai. That means searching Bones with Skull and immidiatelly using it is a very hard thing to accomplish as you need a monster to search with Skull and you need no monsters to use Bones. That being said if you have both and a lv3 in your graveyard it works just fine, but the conditions get harsher.

Another notable card is OOPArts Golden Shuttle. Along with Mayan Machine the only non-rock, and coincidentially, machines, in the archetype, Golden Shuttle is a lv4 card that once per turn can increase the level of all face up OOPArts by 1, opening the way for a crystal bone combo to reach lv4 with itself and a revived lv3, or lv5 with a revived lv4 and the Shuttle itself. But the card it's most easily paired up with is the next one.
OOPArts Moai. It's a lv5 rock monster, and when you control another OOPArts monster it can be special summoned in face up defense position. The simplest thing to do with this is summon Golden Shuttle, change its own level to 5, search the Moai with Crystal Skull if you don't have it in your hand already, and then special summon Moai to go for a lv5 Xyz. Of course this Xyz summon is done at -1 and therefore not suitable for the high tiers.

Next are their Xyz monsters, which they have 1 for each of their regular 2 accesses, rank 3 and rank 5. At rank 3 we have OOPArts Crystal Alien (made with Crystal Bones and Crystal Skull?), a 2100 ATK monster that can activate its effect when it is targeted for an attack, and when it does it cannot be destroyed by battle or card effects and you take no battle damage from battles involving it. A decent defensive card, not your prime option when going for 3, but the fact it is in the theme will come up later. At rank 5 we have Number 33: OOPArts Super Weapon - Machu Mach which has been discussed elsewere, again it is not your prime option for rank 5, but again it is important that it is themed and we'll get to it in a while.
In the off chance you get 2 moai and a shuttle on the field (or 2 shuttles! I don't see why not, ss bones, get shuttle, normal summon another shuttle, increase level twice, go for 6, there) you can always drop their other themed Xyz, Number 6: OOPArts Atlanthal, while that also opens the way to regular rank 6.

This would be a good time to bring up that since Bones, Skull and Shuttle are all LIGHT monster, you have access to Stellar Xyz. That means that Bones + Skull can get you Stellar Hyades, and if that is not enough remember that Stellar Xyz monsters can be instantly overlayed into the 2700 rank 6, Stellar Ptolemys Messier 7, and ALSO remember that since Ptolemys is rank 6, that as well can be instantly overlayed into the rank 7, piercing 2600 ATK Gaia Dragoon, which is, if nothing else, an elaborate play. You also have access to the solid stellar omega by using a Shuttle and Bone, and the very annoying Stellar Pleiades with a Shuttle and a Bone going into Shuttle. Now if you only had a Moai too you could go into Dbokak, King of Heavy Machinery, which is just beautiful, albeit wasteful.

Now onto their support. Looking past the themed Solidarity, OOPArts Pyramid Eye Tablet, and its inherent uselessness, and the equally lackluster Stonehendge Method, we have an excelent support card in the form of OOPArts Technology, because Technology always wins. What Technology does is, it is activated by banishing an OOPArts monster from your graveyard, then you look at the top 2 cards of your deck, add one to your hand and send the other to the graveyard. You can only activate one Technology per turn and you can't special summon monsters this turn except from OOPArts monsters.
This should remind you of Pot of Duality, main differences are the activation conditions.
1, it needs to banish an OOPArts monster from the graveyard, which depending on how often you can waste a monster can on one hand be bad, on the other you have easy access to leviair so it can be very helpful instead. Still, it can prove slow early game because of your graveyard resources. Even if you have a single skull in your graveyard, whether you are willing to part with it instead of keeping it to make that Bone live, is a touchy matter. That condition is the only thing making me reconsidering running 3 of them in an OOPArts deck.
2, it looks at the top 2 cards, instead of 3, however instead of returning the other card(s) to the deck, it sends it to the graveyard, which is of course great in comparison, you may as well refeed your graveyard, that just lost a monster, with another monster instantly just from resolving this effect.
3, it doesn't block all special summons, only the special summons of non-OOPArts monsters, and this is where the themed Xyz come into play. You can still go bone into skull into Crystal Alien, you can still go Shuttle + Moai into Machu Mach, you can even go Bones into Shuttle + Shuttle into Atlanthal, leaving you for much bigger plays after gathering your pieces in comparison to duality in the deck.
It is indeed a small archetype, but with 3 dualities, + 3 technologies, + perhaps 3 card car ds, you can make the deck compact enough to support that number of monsters and still keep a fast, solid pace.

External support to note, besides Xyz, is Rockfall Area, a card which I wouldn't really use, but it does have its uses nontheless.
It is a field spell card and whenever a monster of yours would be destroyed by battle you can mill a rock type monster instead. That helps you send cards for Bone to the graveyard (itself, skull, collosal head and moai is also possible) or Collosal head to be ready to use its effect. On one hand it keeps your monsters alive to set up bigger xyz combos and helps instantly get those Collosal Heads to the graveyard for whatever use you want them (it doesn't have to be your monster they switch to defense, it can be an opponent's monster so that you can run it over. Heck, it can switch to face down to get around effects, like switch an Absolute Zero so that you can go Zenmaioh and kill it without triggering its effect, just noting a thing) but on the other I'll be captain obvious here and say it's too slow of a card that just stalls. Besides, it's not like the opponent will attack your monsters if they know you'll just mill. But hey, you can use it to stall vs rabbit, why not.

Magical

The second of the interesting themes, most interesting theme-wise for me as it deals with grimoires, and unfortunatelly the weakest of the 4 (spellcasters were doomed to always suck after a certain point in the metagame, weren't they...).

First we have Magical Calligrapher Batel. 500 ATK and 400 DEF, lv2 WATER spellcaster, not the most impressive beater. It's effect however is decent. Whenever it is normal summoned or flipped face up you search a "Book of Spell" spell card. It may be tough and seem wasteful to normal summon it (you are not only wasting your normal summon, but with 500 ATK you are left wide open to an offensive of any kind), however the fact it can get the search when flipped face up means you can set it and have it act as a flip effect monster instead. That also means you can get that effect by setting him with the effect of another lv2 spellcaster monster, Apprentice Magician, adding some consistency if needed. However, what a searcher searches can make or break it, so all its worth depends on the worth of those "Book of Spell" spell cards.

Magical Archer Lamour is the next member of the group. It's a lv3, spellcaster WIND monster, with an unimpressive 600 ATK but a respectable 2000 DEF and a mediocre effect. Once per turn you can reveal one Book of Spell from your hand to special summon a lv4 or lower spellcaster from your hand. Certainly it can find some uses, like an emergency xyz summon (for 3 with another lv3 or 4 with Fors if need be), summoning a blastfan to get its effect, etc. But it's not like you didn't have ways to summon lv4 or lower spellcasters before, so its use is debatable, as there is no direct support FOR "Magical" monsters (all support goes to "Book of Spell" spell cards instead and spellcaster-type monsters within their archtype) so the fact you can use any other spellcaster that would do the same job instead means a card of the "Magical" archetype can't get by on name alone.

Magical Summoner Temper is one of the interesting cards in the group. If you activated a Book of Spell this turn you can tribute it to special summon a level 5 or higher spellcaster from your deck, however you cannot special summon other level 5 or higher monsters in the same turn. Now if you go on DN and place the appropriate conditions to view the list of level 5 or higher DARK spellcaster effect monsters you will see there are enough interesting choices for equally interesting hybrid decks (as well as DARK MAGICIAN!!!!) but fortuatelly for the theme there is an excelent "Magical" pick as well.

Magical Warrior Fors is a versatile Xyz helping card at first glance. It's a 1500ATK, FIRE level 4 spellcaster monster that can shuffle a Book of Spell from your graveyard into your deck to increase the level of a spellcaster type monster by 1 and its attack by 500. It can make that Archer lv4 to go for a xyz summon as well as make himself lv5 for a xyz summon along with the lv5 that Temper summoned (no good pick exists for a viable deck, so that is just in case a lv5 monster is released in the theme), or for an Xyz in 7 that will be explained later, and of course it can go to 2000 ATK in an emergency. It needs the right place to fit in and as things are perhaps it wouldn't fit in the good version of the deck, save from hybrids, but an interesting card to work with nontheless.

Magical Swordsman Shario is perhaps another lackluster card in the theme. The beater of the theme at lv4 with 1800 ATK, spellcaster WIND monster. It can discard a Book of Spell spell card to add a Spellcaster from the graveyard to the hand. Save from reloading your veiler or wanting to redo a Calligrapher summon a turn late mid-game, it just seems like summoner monk got a sword and brain damage with it. Unless something you can use it for appears ofc.

And then after all of this you'd think "why the heck would I use those things unless those Book of Spell cards are the best spells ever?!", and I assure you, they are mediocre spells so...
The reason would be her. Magical Erudite Junon is a card that should remind you of another card once you check through the stats. Most lv7 spellcasters do that for me, but when you see 2500 ATK and 2100 DEF, most of the older players will remember the attack and defense of "The ultimate wizard in terms of attack and defense.": the Dark Magician. Indeed, being a LIGHT monster, stats wise Junon seems to be the opposite of the Dark Magician. But other than this sentimental value, what lets her salvage this archtype is her effect. It can be special summoned by revealing 3 "Book of Spell" spell cards in your hand. A feat not easily accomplished, at least not with few time or resources, however Junon does not carry any summon restrictions, and other than the regular special summon ways (including Magical Dimension), she also happens to be a LIGHT spellcaster with a level higher than 5, meaning it can be special summoned by the afforementioned Magical Summoner Temper from the same grimoire supporting archetype, allowing for relativelly easy access. Her effect is actually quite good in the deck, reminding one of Master Hyperion in many ways (although it does of course seem like a weaker deck, perhaps due to the books themselves). Once per turn, by banishing one "Book of Spell" from your hand or graveyard you can destroy 1 card your opponent controls. A fitting effect for a boss monster really which makes the decktype viable in the lower tiers. Considering Temper can summon this from the deck at 141, the fact its a +1 on its own makes it a good card. Now that's a Magician Girl I can use.

With that we are done with all announced main deck monsters but there is an important part left. That is the all important grimoires. As it was mentioned the archtype does not even mention itself in any way, but either spellcaster type monsters or "Book of Spell" spell cards, and seeing that they come up at quite important places (they are what Calligrapher searches, what Fors needs to change its level, Archer needs to show one to special summon, one has to have been used for Temper to activate its effect and it's what Junon needs to banish to destroy cards) whether your deck can afford to run them and how makes all the difference in the viability of the decktype.

First we have the Grimoire Book of Spell, with unfortunate naming but perhaps fitting, as this card can fetch any other "Book of Spell" spell card, other than itself. Another restriction is that you can only activate one of them per turn, which is shared by all other Book of Spell cards. Looking at just this things are looking good for the books, perhaps this grimoire is what saves the rest with its good effect.

Second is Hygromanteia Book of Spell (or Key of Solomon), which has really a mediocre effect. You can increase the attack of one spellcaster you have by 1000 and when said spellcaster destroys a monster by battle you can add one Book of Spell to your hand. The problem with this card is that it's a Normal Spell Card, meaning not chainable, meaning it is painfully easy for it to become a simple -1 instead of the +1 you wanted (or 141 if you don't count destruction by battle, which is a reasonable way to look at things really). Now whether it can or cannot be used would depend on the quality of the other books.

Next we have the great Necronomicon, Necronomicon Book of Spell, which is unfortunatelly not a great spell in yugioh as well. In yugioh a great spell card is usually simple and very effective, but Necronomicon is very specific. It is also an equip spell card. You banish 1 spellcaster-type from your graveyard and reveal one other Book of Spell in your hand. Then special summon another spellcaster-type from your graveyard, equip it with this card and then increase the level of the equipped spellcaster by the level of the banished spellcaster. There is no doom clause in case Necronomicon leaves the field (it should be safe to say however that the monster returns to its original level).
So what does this do? For one it is a spell card that special summons from the graveyard, which is preferable to trap cards doing the same thing as they can be used for a quick swarm (you prefer Monster Reborn and Premature Burial to Call of the Haunted), meaning one necronomicon can get you your Junon back in action instantly. Additionally its an equip card seemingly without a doom clause (it's a translation so I'd rather wait to be sure), meaning that it can be bounced to the hand and re-used so long as there are enough spellcasters in your graveyard. And being an equip spell card means that appart from Grimoire Book of Spell it can also be searched by Hidden Armory if you want something centered around it.
Another thing to look at is its level increasing effect, which within the deck brings up certain combos. Let me bring up an example to demonstrate.

Calligrapher Batel searched a Grimoire Book of Spell or just you had a Grimoire. Fors or Shario eventually hit the grave as well one way or another. You search Necronomicon with Grimoire and summon Summoner Temper. Use its effect as Grimoire was activated this turn and special summon Junon, then destroy a card by banishing Grimoire. Then activate the Necronomicon you searched, banish Temper and summon Fors/Sherio, with level 7 as banishing Temper which is a level 3 increased its own level by 3 according to the Necronomicon's effect (Necronomicon increases the level of the equipped monster, the monster was summoned as a lv4, it then became a lv7 when equipped, so you havent summoned another lv5 or higher level monster yet, still being ok by Temper's effect restriction). Then Xyz your 2 monsters into a rank 7 Xyz, like their own themed monster, Magical Hierophant Hieron, if you want to deal with spells or traps (Necronomicon hit the grave as it lost its target so you do have at least 1 Book of Spell in your graveyard), or Number 11: Big Eye (also a spellcaster monster) to take control of an opponent's monster. That as an example to high level Xyz plays available by Necronomicon. Another low tier idea would be to use it with Different Dimension Master instead of Junon. With Temper bring out Different Dimension Master instead of Junon (lv5 spellcaster LIGHT), banish with Necronomicon the spellcaster you want access to and now bring it back with the DDM you summoned by discarding a card, leaving you with 3 cards on the field and the possibility to go for some interesting Xyz Plays. Nothing with too much advantage really, but can help create certain focused decks for, as I said, interesting Xyz plays. And of course pernament and retrievable spell card revival is a good thing to have (and perhaps abuse), so long as you have enough consistency with having Book of Spell cards in your hand to reveal.

Last we have the most usable card among them the way I see it, Torah Book of Spell (Ha! Konami calls the Torah a grimoire. Yeah, that certainly isn't going to get censored. Although I guess every other grimoire will be as well...)
Torah is a quick play spell card (thank goodness), that applies either one of those 2 effects on a spellcaster. It will either make it unaffected by either spell cards, or unaffected by other trap cards. It is also the only Book of Spell of which you can activate multiples in the same turn (because, you know, it doesn't matter if you do). Now this instantly is obvious to be a dumbed down version of Forbidden Lance. It will protect your own monsters but you can't use it to get over your opponent's. Additionally it can't be activated in the damage step, and you can only protect your monster against one kind of card, so you can't stop both a forbidden chalice and a fiendish chain. On the other hand that means you can stop a trap and still use Hygromanteia Book of Spell on it (now that's a book I haven't mentioned enough), although all those cases, good and bad, seem too rare to care about. Still, it is a useful 141 card to protect your plays that can be splashed in order to be used for revealing or banishing from the graveyard or whatever uses other than their effects you want your Books for. However, it's big drawback lies in that searching it with a Grimoire or Batel costs you the element of surprise, now the opponent will know to play around it if he can.

Those Books aren't the best read, meaning not too good news for the archtype costing it a tier or 2, but still I'd say playable, with a Grimoire Book of Spell allowing for toolboxing, a Necronomicon pulling extravagant plays, Torah being at least splashable and Junon making up for their lack of power.

A mention is needed for their themed Xyz, Magical Hierophant Hieron. At rank 7 it's not something easy to access without an extravagant Necronomicon combo. Its effect can however offer a way out in cases. It can destroy spell/trap cards your opponent controls up to the number of Book of Spell spell cards in your graveyard.

Now it may seem hard to make a pure Magical deck, however they seem to be supporting all spellcasters instead, that means they can enjoy previous spellcaster support or good spellcaster monsters, like summoner monk, Apprentice Magician, Magician's Circle, Magical Dimension, Wonder Wand (summoning Batel and utilizing its +1 with Wonder Wand is certainly not bad), a gravekeeper engine like the usual Spy engine, synchros like Arcanite Magician with the help of certain tuners, like Genex Ally Birdman as Blastfan can be used with other cards in the theme like Archer or Necronomicon, spellcaster Xyz like Magi Magi Magician Girl and the newly introduced in the set Alchemic Magician , which needs 3 lv4 spellcasters and by discarding a card in the end phase can set a spell card from your deck, which can either be a big spell card or a quick spell card like Book of Moon or Torah to use on your opponent's turn. And it can generate certain Hybrids if you look at the available monsters for Temper to summon, like spell counters and Endymion. Now if only Dark Magician of Chaos was unbanned... No wonder spellcasters stopped working if their big boss is out...

Madolce

Third in the list, interesting enough to make Kitsouki squeel like a fangirl, and second best in usability by my estimate are the Madolce. I can certainly say however that the only interesting thing here is not their sweet appearence. All Madolce share a certain effect, and that effect says, when this card is destroyed by your opponent and sent to the graveyard, shuffle it back to your deck. Now this may not seem like much, but it will show later on. They'd have such an effect for a reason of course.

Let's begin with Madolce Chouxvalier (yes, that's not a small horse, this guy is riding a pony). Other than the regular Madolce re-shuffle effect all Chouxvalier has is an effect preventing the opponent from attacking Madolce monsters other than itself. It also has 1700 attack, qualifying as a simple beater. I don't care for simple beaters, but when it comes to this archetype this can change easily, so 1700 attack may actually be a thing to remember.

Next we have Madolce Butlerusk. This I won't care about unless I am proven wrong. When it is normal summoned while you have another Madolce on the field you can add 1 Field Spell card from your deck to your hand. Their field spell is indeed useful, but meeting the condition of a face up Madolce, knowing how frail they are, along with a normal summon still being available, Butlerusk being in my hand and not already having a field spell out, isn't a chance I am willing to bet on. It's attack is at 1500 however which may be worth noting.

This one I consider just support for their boss monster, Madolce Mille-feuille, which is obviously a pink kitten sitting on a Mille-feuille. Being a kitten it is naturally weak, with 500 ATK and 300 DEF. When it is summoned you can special summon another Madolce from your hand. Unfortunatelly for the kitten, it is lv3, so with no other lv3 in the archetype yet it can't get the easy way out of Xyz summon (unless you have another copy of itself and decide the -1 is worth it) and will more often than not get brutally murdered. Poor thing... But even with all those things going horribly for it, it does have a use in the deck, and that is to special summon the next card.

Madolce Puddingcess seems to be the Madolce boss monster. It has 1000 ATK and DEF. It has the regular shuffle back effect all Madolce monsters have and while you have no monsters in your graveyard it gains 800 ATK and DEF, a relativelly easy to fulfil condition when considering the regular Madolce effect. What makes her good is that when she battles you can destroy 1 card your opponent controls. What makes her bad is her attitude. Also the fact she is a lv5 monster, requiring 1 tribute under normal circumstances, meaning you are going to have something in your graveyard, not to mention it would take more time and resources. And that's where Mille-feuille comes in. You simply normal summon Mille-feuille and special summon Puddingcess from your hand with its effect.

Of course the archetype as it seems up to now is extremely underwhelming, and rightfully so as I haven't talked about 2 big cards in it, one of them being the afforementioned field spell, the other being something that is obviously missing. I am telling you to simply summon Mille-feuille with Puddingcess, both from your hand, when I have not mentioned any searcher, and that's the other card.

The last monster I have not talked about in the theme is Madolce Majoleine. The simple way to put this card is that it's a 1400 ATK monster that when it is summoned you search a Madolce and it has the regular Madolce shuffle effect when destroyed. Now looking at it you may call it simply a "searcher", but when considering the tier the deck runs it, I'll call it an absolute monster and a stun genious. Let's look at it again. When it is normal summoned or flip summoned, you can add one Madolce monster from your deck to your hand. Period.
...
Did you notice something missing? How about the regular clause stopping it from searching itself? It's not there. Madolce Majoleine can search Madolce Majoleine. That is the big point number one. Gadget monsters had 1400 at their highest monster (green gadget) and needed to keep a steady circle searching the next gadget, and then the next, therefore for consistency you needed 2 sets of them. Madolce Majoleine can be a stun deck engine by itself, with no other Madolce monsters in, at just 3 cards.
But that's not that big of a deal, you'll run out of Madolce Majoleines in your deck eventually. Or not. Because Madolce Majoleine happens to be a Madolce monster, and all Madolce monsters share the effect "When this card is destroyed by your opponent and sent to the Graveyard: Shuffle it into your Deck." so either you don't destroy it (mind control for xyz, d prison) or the majoleines never end. And that's the second big point.
The third big point comes with the next card, and that's their field spell.

That card is Madolce Château. First thing it does when activated is shuffle back all Madolce monsters in your graveyard back to your deck, convenient when you had to tribute summon your Puddingcess for example, or just something happened. Second effect is a 500 ATK boost to all your Madolce monsters, and with that things are starting to look good. Your Puddingcess now along with her own boost hits 2300 with a destruction effect as well and your mutated stratos monster reaches 1900 ATK. But that's all mediocre without the last effect. The last effect says that whenever a Madolce monster would be shuffled back to the deck, it is returned to your hand. So to explain, Madolce Majoleine is summoned, gets her search and stands now at 1900 ATK. When destroyed it is returned to the hand, can be summoned yet again and do another search, standing again at 1900 ATK and will again return to the hand upon destruction. The same can be said about a Mille-feuille - Puddingcess combo, which can be repeated, or Mille-feuille itself always raising the number of monsters on the field by 1. And that's why I said Chouxvalier might in fact be notable, being the strongest Madolce next to a boosted Puddingcess (and even then only by 100), it stands at 2200 ATK and returns to the hand upon destruction. Generally the field spell does give a good boost to the archtype and with good enough a controll lineup in the backrows it can establish good control with the deck. Still I'd prefer terraforming over Butlerusk to search it.

I should note at this point that since 021 is Madolce Mille-feuille and 023 is Madolce Chouxvalier with serial number 022 being still unknown it is almost certain that there is at least one more Madolce effect monster in the set.

They do have 2 more support cards in the form of Trap cards, which are not however very good. The first is Madolce Manner, first you have to shuffle 1 Madolce monster in your graveyard back into your deck. Then all Madolce monsters on the field gain 800 ATK and DEF. Then you also can shuffle one more Madolce monster back into your deck. It seems to be trying to do you the favour of taking out the Madolces from your graveyard to give Puddingcess a boost (for example, the opponent attacks your 1000 ATK Puddingcess, you flip that, clear your graveyard of the Madolce you tributed to summon it letting her get 800 by her bonus + 800 from the card effect, bringing her to 2600 ATK for a surprise and extra destruction from her effect), but in order to activate it you need a Madolce in your graveyard, which is actually hard to accomplish since you need to either tribute summon Puddingcess or go out of your way to Xyz summon something, and in the end all you get is 800 extra ATK, which of course can be done by other cards, while fixing a graveyard issue can be done by the initial activation of Chateau which is a much better card.
The other card is Madolce Waltz, which is a continuous card that burns for 300 every time time a madolce monster battled, which is just... come on, didn't we get past that point in the game about 10 years ago? Why do they even... meh...

However, less saddening is the external support they can get.
That would be Guardian Eatos. It can be special summoned when you have no monsters in your graveyard, and true enough, Madolces will usually have a clean graveyard as they believe in recycling. Now for those of you who are not familiar with the card, don't expect any extravagant effects. Actually don't expect any effects, it's just a 2500 beater. The good thing with 2500 beaters is that they, well, beat. It also is the fact they run over Dolkka and Laggia and keep them scared. The drawback in that is that when it hits the graveyard it will be hard to make it leave, and Puddingcess will only get her very vital boost (1000 is very different from 1800) when the graveyard is empty of monsters. Chateau and even the trap, Madolce Manner, shuffles back Madolce monsters, not all monsters, that means Eatos as an outsider will be holding back Puddingcess. Of course that, like everything else in the game, you can get around, and with this it's a simple matter of timing and seeing what's the best move available in the game. Mirror Ladybug also deserves a mention as it can go into an easy Xyz (that however would be a Xyz at -1 that would eventually get monsters in your graveyard) and the availability of Malefic monsters due to them having a useful field spell card.

Geargia

And we finally come to the last archetype and the strongest right now by my estimation, and my favourite for a very simple reason. They are EARTH machines. And that makes them amazing. When you are going through it it might seem like they are Wind-Ups' stupid little brother, in how they loop, and it is partially true as they are in a lower tier actually, but I'd say they still stay true to the machine spirit, and isn't that all that matters in the end?
Now let's get to the members.

You probably know the first of them since it was the only one introduced in Generation Force, and of course back then it was useless (it's only slightly less useless now).
That is Geargiano.
A level 3 machine EARTH monster which you can tribute to special summon a level 4 machine from your graveyard with negated effects. You don't need me to tell you that this means simple Xyz at -1. Note however that it supports Machine Duplication, which will have some importance later. But for now let's move right along and leave that other one use for later.

Geargiano MK-II is the new and improved Geargiano! Nah, just kidding. It's slightly less mediocre but because it doesn't have that 1 use the regular Geargiano has it might actually see less play. Might. Because it does have its uses. Geargiano MK-II summons a Geargia monster from your graveyard when it is normal summoned or flip summoned. Since it is a lv3, if you get a lv4 just use it, if you get a lv3 you can do an Xyz at 141, which if you can manage to do is more appealing than what its elder brother would do. Still, fitting enough lv3 Geargias in that deck may be harder than you think.
3 more monsters to go for the main deck, 3 more chances to shine, and they make good use of them.

Let's start with Geargiarmor. A level 4 EARTH machine with 1100 ATK and 1900 DEF. Once per turn you can flip it face down and when it is flipped face up you can add one Geargia monster from your deck to your hand except from itself. That is a solid card able to stand as the centerpiece of the archtype. You can set it, let it get flipped by battle, get a search, and when it survives due to the 1900 DEF, when your turn comes you can flip it face down with its effect and flip summon it for yet another search, leading into several combos with 2 other basic cards. Let's move on for now and tie it all together later.

Geargiarsenal is another excelent card. It's a level 4 EARTH machine monster with 1500 ATK that gets 200 more ATK for every other Geargia you control (however that is by wikia, while shriek states you get 200 for every Geargia you control, making this a 1700 monster which is actually quite good). You can tribute it to special summon a Geargia directly from your deck in defense except from a copy of itself. So for example you can tribute it to summon a Geargiarmor to set it with its own effect, which can search a Geargiarsenal when flipped which can repeat the process. Or you can search a Giargiano to fetch something you wanted from the graveyard instead. 2 cards that search is a good and consistent thing in a deck. But searchers can only be so good if you can't search anything you can really use, and the next card will be a good hint to that.

Geargiaccel is a level 4 EARTH machine monster with 1400 ATK. When you have another Geargia face up you can special summon it from the hand in defense. When it is sent from the field to the graveyard you can a Geargia from your graveyard to your hand except a copy of itself. This was obviously made for Xyz, and with the searching you have it allows for good Xyz summons. Even when you don't have the correct conditions for a Xyz summon on the field you can set it and get another monster you need from the graveyard when it is destroyed, like Geargiarsenal or Geargiarmor to search. But of course all of those can be really mediocre, even with the regular machine support. That changes with a Xyz monster that is made for this archetype, yet is barely not a Geargia itself.

Geargiganto X
We dig giant robots.
Geargiganto X is a rank 4 Xyz machine monster which requires 2 machine type monsters as materials. It has 2300 ATK and 1500 DEF, and its effect is a blessing to many a deck. By detaching 1 Xyz material from it you can add 1 level 4 or lower Machine-Type monster to your hand from your deck or graveyard. As a bonus, when it leaves the field, you can special summon 1 level 3 or lower Geargia monster from your graveyard. And that is where Geargiano is mildly useful btw. The only 2 monsters you can now get with Geargiganto X's extra effect are Geargiano and Geargiano MK-II. Geargiano MK-II has an effect which activates when normal summoned, so Geargiano is the only viable option, which can at least get a Geargiaccel to get its effect when sent to the graveyard.
Now with all we know of the other 3 basic monsters let's see what Geargiganto X means. First of all, Geargiaccel can be special summoned from the hand, instantly hinting the possibility of loop plays when searched after a Xyz summon. Let's bring up the previous example of Geargiarmor to make it clear:

You set Geargiarmor, it is attacked and survives due to its 1900 DEF while searching you a Geargiaccel. Then on your turn you set it with its own effect and then flip summon it, as you have not manually changed its battle position this turn, to get another search of Geargiaccel. Now special summon both of the Geargiaccel you searched. With the 2 Geargiaccel make a Geargiganto X and search your last Geargiaccel (or just add from the graveyard the Geargiaccel you detached if you want to, as Geargiganto can add from the graveyard as well) and special summon it. Now summon Another Geargiganto X and search another monster.
That monster can be a Geargiano, which you can normal summon to place a Geargiaccel in defence. Now when Geargiaccel dies you can add a Geargia to your hand from your graveyard and when a Geargiganto dies you can summon a Geargiano to special summon another Geargiaccel either to have it die for its effect or for another Xyz summon, of possibly another Geargiganto X.
Of course the Geargiano isn't your only option, especially when considering the fact you have yet to normal summon. You can search and set a Geargiarmor to set up for later, or summon a Geargiarsenal and either keep it or tribute it for Geargiarmor to again set, but while filling your graveyard with an extra Geargiarsenal.
Whichever you choose, you are now at +2, and a good +2 at that since other than your initial monster which remained almost unchangd (or completely unchanged if you ended up with a set Geargiarmor) the 2 are 2300 monsters that will search other monsters next turn if left standing.
That was an example of what you can do with Geargiganto X and Geargiaccel.

But all that is not the most important thing about Geargiganto X. The most important thing is that it does not search Geargia monsters. It searches level 4 or lower machine type monsters, and can be made through level 4 machine type monsters. Among those the number one card to search is Machina Gearframe, one of the best machines. In the end of that combo for example, instead of Geargiano or Geargiarmor, search and normal summon Machina Gearframe, then search a Machina Fortress and summon it. 2300 + 2300 + 1800 + 2500 = 8900.
Now let's take this combo 1 step back, where you had Geargiarmor and 2 Geargiaccel. Make the first Geargiganto X and instead of Geargiaccel search Drilling Construction Heavy Machinery: Drill Jumbo. Normal summon it, make the remaining machine a lv5 and Xyz for rank 5.
And of course you don't have to go into that combo, pulling off a Geargiganto through normal means anytime can get you other things like a Gadget or the afforementioned Gearframe for more plusses, it can also get you things like a Birdman or a Black Salvo for synchro plays (Geargiaccel happens to be very birdman friendly, and Burei is Geargiganto friendly), you can get a Drill Jumbo for rank 5 as mentioned or heck, you can get card car D to use next turn.

And of course you can't expect to pull a Geargiarmor combo because your opponent happened to attack your face down monster. But you can not be greedy instead and use Chaos Infinity. Set Geargearmor and flip Chaos Infinity to summon Army Wisel, then search and summon Geargiaccel, make a Geargiganto X and search another Geargiaccel (make sure you didn't make the first with armor and accel since Geargiaccel needs a face up Geargia to be summoned and Geargiganto X does not fit the bill), summon it and make your second Geargiganto X, now make your search and sit on a very good +1, as you now have 2 Geargiganto X on the field.

Or when you have the Geargiarmor, Army Wisel and the Geargiaccel you searched on the field don't Xyz, bounce Geargiaccel with Genex Ally Birdman, summon it back since you still have a Geargia on the field, make a Burei with Birdman and Army Wisel and summon a Watchdog. Now you can keep Xyz'ing for 2 Geargiganto X and get a search in the end. Or you can still not Xyz, but instead make a Bureido with Watchdog and Geargiarmor, get another Watchdog, and either get your draw here with Burei's effect, make a Geargiganto X and get a search for 3 beaters, a draw and a search out of your 3 cards, or make yet another Bureido, get another Karakuri and instead for your 3 cards get 3 + 1 beaters and 2 draws.

Or you can just not use the Chaos Infinity on the turn you set the Geargiarmor, you can use it on the next turn to save your normal summon, get your Geargiaccel down, make a Geargiganto X with Wisel and Armor, detach Wisel for Black Salvo, summon Black Salvo, special summon Wisel with its effect (Army of Wisel is a lv4 DARK machine monster), make a Burei, get a Watchdog and again either end with 1 Bureido, 1 Burei, 1 Karakuri, 1 Geargiganto X and 1 draw or 1 Burei, 2 Geargiganto X and 1 search, this time at the cost of 2 only cards just for still having your normal summon.

And the 3 or 2 cards of course don't need to be Geargiarmor, Chaos Infinity and Birdman or another specific combination. They can be the regular Geargiarmor and 2 Geargiaccel combo + Birdman, or instead just having the second geargiaccel in your hand already and only searching one by flip summoning your Geargiarmor, or just normal summoning a monster on the next turn next to the face down Geargiarmor, etc. Those are simply examples since the extra combos that open with this have great variety and possibilities.

Other than those extra cards to note here, keeping the regular machine support like Fortress or the ever helpful Limiter Removal aside, Iron Call is another card they can use well, but that's mostly accounted to Geargiganto X, since it nicely eliminates the -1 of it. Still it lets them combo 1 Geargiganto X further (note how they often stay at 2 Geargiganto X).
Machine Duplication as well, as was mentioned before, can find use in specialized builds as it is usable with Geargiano (which being a Geargia monster is searchable by way too many things as you've seen). Geargiano doesn't even need 3 monsters in the graveyard to do that combo, 2 will do. Simply get 2 lv4s, make the first Geargiganto X, search Geargiaccel, tribute the last Geargiano for the monster you detached and make your second Geargiganto X after summoning the Geargiaccel for your last search and another solid +1. Not really as worth it though since you need 3 Geargiano and Machine Duplications that may very easily be dead.

This archetype is one I am really looking forward to, and perhaps maybe see something even more amazing coming up for it and an article from DSummon hopefully soon.

With that we are done with the archtypes but that's not all for the review. Next are some of the notable non-archetypal cards in the set (which may actually be indirectly supporting specific archetypes).

Singles

Again, the set doesn't bring something very competitive to the table other than the 2 xyz monsters, Heroic Champion Excalibur and Geargiganto X, but there are still some interesting things in. And we will probably be seeing more good and competitive cards in the next 30 that are yet to be revealed.

Let's start with an addition to an archetype not present in the set (therefore a single), and that is Photon Kaiser. Photon Kaiser is a level 8 LIGHT Warrior type at 2000 ATK and 2800 DEF which special summons another copy of itself from the hand or deck when it is normal summoned. That is a simple way to get to rank 8 Xyz with little cost, so long as you can manage to normal summon it. That means either in a deck with plenty tributes, like Frogs, or using something like Mausoleum of the Emperor. Can find its way in fun decks giving a new way to Xyz for 8 (but my Grunard Xyz does that better :P ).

Next card is a very interesting one.
Super Dimensional Robo Galaxy Destroyer
and we still dig giant robots.
This one is the most demanding Xyz monster in the game needing 3 level 10 monsters to be Xyz summoned. You'd expect it to be pretty amazing if it needs all that, and true enough, it is.
It has 5000 ATK and once per turn you can detach 1 Xyz material to destroy all spells and traps your opponent controls. Your opponent cannot activate spells or trap cards in response to this cards effect. Now add the TCG rules on priority for a big trollface. In short it does what every machine would and should be doing: Promoting OTKs. Now all you need to do is summon 3 lv10 monsters.

Still in the Xyz zone we now have Fairy King Albhed- wait, no, no, no, why did I say that? It's Fairy King Alverd, it has a v and an r, it is not a pun on Alnerd and it's a rank 4 Xyz that requires 2 EARTH monsters and has 2300 ATK. Once per turn you can detach 1 Xyz material to make all non-EARTH monsters on the field lose 500 ATK and DEF. A good card that lets you run over <2800 ATK threats in the game on your rank 4 Xyz if you have EARTH monsters, something that will find its way in extra decks, especially those of decktypes from this set, like Geargia or even Madolce (still all of them EARTH).

Another interesting card we find is Galaxy Queen's Light. You pick 1 level 7 or higher monster you control and all your other monsters become the same level. An interesting way to summon high level monsters. One example I can give is get your Tragoedia down, then summon Treeborn on your turn, summon a Swap From and 2 Ronintoadins from the graveyard (or 3 Ronnintoadins, I dunno) and then play this. Now you have 5 level 10s, make 3 of them into Super Dimensional Robo Galaxy Destroyer, the other 2 into Super Dreadnought Cannon Express Gustaph Max (what? too big names? they need level 10 monsters, they'd better have huge names) to go for a certain OTK. Low chance but an interesting example nontheless. It looks like something people will find use for in fun decks (Coelacanth effect + this into Coelacanth + 2 Big Eye + 2 opponent's monsters?).

Nearing the end of the review with 3 cards left we have Earth Spirit God - Grand Soil. It cannot be summoned except by having 5 EARTH monsters in your graveyard exactly. 2800 ATK, when it is summoned you can special summon a monster from either player's graveyard. If this card leaves the field you must skip your next turn's battle phase. Again a very interesting card, a boss monster for EARTH based decks (and there are a lot of those) that can pull a surprise finish with its own attack and its Monster Reborn effect.

Next is Giant God of the Silver Summit, a rank 3 Xyz monster needing EARTH monsters, having 1800 ATK and 2200 DEF. Once per turn you can detach 1 Xyz material to target 1 s/t on the field. That card cannot be activated while this card is face up, it says. It may seem like a meh effect but it ties well with its next one. When it destroys a monster in battle while having an Xyz material, you can special summon an EARTH rock monster from your graveyard (unconfirmed specifications) in face-up defense, which means the first effect is to help it get through battle, while it supports rock with its second. Along with the next card, and Rockfall that was mentioned in OOPArts, there is plenty new rock support.

Last review is for Block Golem, a level 3 EARTH rock monster with other stats unknown. If the only cards in your graveyard are EARTH, by tributing this turn you can special summon 2 lv4 or lower rock type monsters from your graveyard in defense, but they cannot activate their effects this turn. Some Xyz support for the rock type, for example a way to go rank 4 in Rock stun and other EARTH based decks that include rock monsters. Yet another interesting card.

With that the reviews are done. If you paid attention you might have noticed that there was a lot of support for EARTH, and that would probabloy be because Heroics, Madolces, Giargias and half of OOPArts are all EARTH attribute monsters. Because of that, and because of the new machine support in the form of Geargiganto X, Gadgets seem to be getting more boosts lately, as well as Machina Gadget as now there is a consistent way to search the best card in the deck, Machina Gearframe. On top of Geargiganto X (which again, gives them a huge boost) they also enjoy support from Earth Spirit God - Grand Soil, a boss monster with relativelly simple summon conditions in the deck, and Fairy King Alverd, a solid new Xyz they can use.

Now as I have mentioned, nothing really competitive comes from this. But I have also mentioned that is a partial review as there are still 30 cards to be revealed, and those will surely include new support for some of the archetypes introduced. Heroics may become actually decent for example.
Now if we are to meassure the potential of the archtypes, I'd say that because of their horrible state of course Heroics have the most, since anything would be a great boost, but between the other 4, OOPArts, Magical, Madolce and Geargia, I'd say OOPArts and Geargia have an almost closed circle with not that much potential to be explored at least in this set, while it should be noted that Geargia hint heavily to another lv3 or lower machine type monster, that could boost them even further, since the things Geargiganto X can fetch are useless making the second effect seem completely unneccessary. Madolce could use another good card (and it is the only one where we know there is one card missing because of numbering) especially when most cards have very lackluster effects and Mille-feuille is vissibly missing out of its potential in the archetype, but Magical seem to be those lacking the most pieces of the puzzle, making a very incomplete picture of a deck. So by potential it would go
1st: Magical, 2nd: Madolce, 3rd: Geargia, 4th OOPArts,
with those hinting what to look forward to.

If you did actually manage to read this far through all of this, sorry to have taken up so much of your time and thank you for paying heed to my ramblings. I felt like I had to write down all that I found interesting from this set, and they were a lot of things, coming from themes themselves, like grimoires, pretty designs, like Madolces, and interesting decktypes game-wise, like OOPArts and the new machine archtype, Geargia, along with the greatness that is Madolce Majoleine. Perhaps going through it, it's mostly a kind of fanservice, but still they are good cards and I'd be glad if that gave you some useful insight.

That would be all this time,
~Al-Bhed


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PostSubject: Re: Return of the Duelist partial review (57/87)   Fri Mar 30, 2012 10:18 am

This certainly was interesting. I just kept scrolling down until I hit Madolce as I already know of the Archtypes before it. And with that very long review I now know what my next deck ideas are. Thanks a lot^^

As for comments, what can I say? Geargia might become another overused deck with all the strategies it has. I also noticed that they're really going into the EARTH theme this booster pack o.o And I guess that's all for now, other than the godly cards that are soon to be released.


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PostSubject: Re: Return of the Duelist partial review (57/87)   Fri Mar 30, 2012 11:09 am

"Seem like interesting archtypes.


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PostSubject: Re: Return of the Duelist partial review (57/87)   Fri Mar 30, 2012 4:43 pm

nice wall o' text you got yourself there,lol jk,but it was really interesting,on my part,i became interested on the madolce archtype,since it has a weird playstyle (and that does suits me,lol) but it was pretty informative though,i would like to see more of these articles in the future,good job al


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PostSubject: Re: Return of the Duelist partial review (57/87)   Fri Mar 30, 2012 5:26 pm

Someone on another forum said 'Ban Fairy King Alverd'.
Either he's stupid or I don't get it :|
~
Can't someone just summarize what each archtype is themed about? he has his tongue ou

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PostSubject: Re: Return of the Duelist partial review (57/87)   Fri Mar 30, 2012 10:54 pm

99nour wrote:
Can't someone just summarize what each archtype is themed about? he has his tongue ou
Why? Usually good decks are based around a couple of good cards in the archetype so what konami has archetypes do is irrelevant. Wind-Ups wasn't supposed to be a hand destruction archtype, but it's a hand destruction deck because of hunter. Inzektors weren't supposed to be a simple field destruction spam archtype but an equip archetype, yet they are such a deck because of hornet+centi+dragonfly. Dragunity weren't supposed to be a lv8 synchro spam deck, but they are because of phalanx, dux, vajrayana.

If no decktypes yet exist then you can't know what the decktype will be doing. I can tell you Madolces keep a clean graveyard but that hardly has a point. You just find the good cards/groups of cards in there, make your decktype and set your theme. Konami's intention is irrelevant.

99nour wrote:
Spoiler:
 

If that's for robo galaxy destroyer thingy it's irrelevant. It stops being an OTK when you need 5 or more specific cards to do it, play exodia instead in that case, so you need to find a viable combination of cards instead.


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PostSubject: Re: Return of the Duelist partial review (57/87)   Sat Mar 31, 2012 7:30 am

Madolce Majoleine has my interest along with the entire archtype. I loved the review. Thanks, Al.



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PostSubject: Re: Return of the Duelist partial review (57/87)   Sat Mar 31, 2012 11:54 am

Nice read mate, hadn't really looked into this set before.




Al-Bhed: I always had my balls in my hand
Al-Bhed: yep, dark bribe is certainly a +3, and I'll explain how
Al-Bhed: say you have 5 backrows and the opponent tries to heavy you, that would be a -4, then you flip bribe and go -1 in the process, -1 - potential -4 = -1 - (-4)= -1+4 = +3

bakura normal: By the time i draw it my shine balls are already below a gachi gachi
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PostSubject: Re: Return of the Duelist partial review (57/87)   Sun Apr 08, 2012 3:56 pm

well like usual, i must give you probs al. i'm sure you already know i read the magical part twice and merely skimmed through the rest but i have to admit you wrote one hell of an article, very detailed and useful, great work like always. now i'm back to the drawing board with my magical deck lol.



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PostSubject: Re: Return of the Duelist partial review (57/87)   Sun Apr 08, 2012 4:31 pm

Has anyone even tried out these decks? Because I have and they are amazing in their own ways


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PostSubject: Re: Return of the Duelist partial review (57/87)   Sun Apr 08, 2012 10:04 pm

Geargia and Magical are up a least. Geargia works great as expected, Magical performed much better than I expected though once I focused on the good things.


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PostSubject: Re: Return of the Duelist partial review (57/87)   Mon Apr 09, 2012 12:12 am

Geargia works wonders, I actually found it most effective in machina.




Al-Bhed: I always had my balls in my hand
Al-Bhed: yep, dark bribe is certainly a +3, and I'll explain how
Al-Bhed: say you have 5 backrows and the opponent tries to heavy you, that would be a -4, then you flip bribe and go -1 in the process, -1 - potential -4 = -1 - (-4)= -1+4 = +3

bakura normal: By the time i draw it my shine balls are already below a gachi gachi
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PostSubject: Re: Return of the Duelist partial review (57/87)   Mon Apr 09, 2012 2:54 am

magical i found best to work if intergrated with something else. mine for example is intrated into a different spellcaster caster so it appears alot is going on but they create options when you have limited resources. magical are a very strong type and al's post here made me reevaluate them lol. i can only imagine the mayham that al will create with machinas and gearia.



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