October 2008 | The Irish Duelist

The Past and the Present Collide

PJ Tierney (Tele-DaD)
Andrew Murphy (Chaos Control, pre-AST)

Reported by Alex Hayes


In an attempt to settle the debate between two of the most memorable decks in the history of Yu-Gi-Oh! table-topper PJ Tierney (Currently ranked #1 in Ireland) and renowned deck-builder and strategist Andrew Murphy took to the field in a veritable clash of the titans; the infamous traditional Chaos deck replete with the legendary Envoys against the current Tier 1 deck - Teleport Dark Armed Dragon.

Will new-age speed and consistency overcome old-school power and explosiveness? We were about to find out.

Weekend Report

Fortune Tour Challenge : Cork
Hobby League : Cork (Week 4 of 4)

Standings (Swiss)
1st. [5-0] PJ Tierney
2nd. [4-1] Thomas S.
3rd. [4-1] Mark S.
(Zombie Synchro)
4th. [3-2] Alex H.
5th. [3-2] Seàn L.
(Abundance OTK)
6th. [3-2] Kenneth W.
(Warrior Toolbox)
7th. [3-2] Seamus A.
(Zombie Hero)
8th. [2-3] Aaron McI.

PJ Tierney [defeated] Aaron McI.
Thomas S. [defeated] Seamus A.
Mark S. [defeated] Kenneth W.
Alex H. [defeated] Seàn L.

PJ Tierney [defeated] Alex H.
Thomas S. [defeated] Mark S.

PJ Tierney [defeated] Thomas S.

After losing last week I noticed quite a few problems with my experimental non-Draw deck and scrapped it for the 'standard' T-DaD variant:

3 Destiny Hero - Malicious
3 Krebons
2 Dark Armed Dragon
1 Breaker the Magical Warrior
1 Destiny Hero - Diamond Dude
1 Destiny Hero - Doom Lord
1 Caius the Shadow Monarch
1 Elemental Hero Stratos
1 Mystic Tomato
1 Dark Grepher
1 Snipe Hunter
1 Necro Gardna
1 D.D. Crow
1 Sangan
3 Emergency Teleport
3 Allure of Darkness
3 Destiny Draw
2 Reinforcement of the Army
1 Mystical Space Typhoon
1 Monster Reborn
1 Brain Control
1 Heavy Storm
3 Solemn Judgment
2 Phoenix Wing Wind Blast
1 Torrential Tribute
1 Crush Card Virus

3 Stardust Dragon
3 Goyo Guardian
2 Thought Ruler Archfiend
2 Red Dragon Archfiend
2 Colossal Fighter
2 Magical Android
1 Avenging Knight Parshath

3 Skill Drain
2 Kycoo the Ghost Destroyer
2 Destiny Hero - Defender
2 Dust Tornado
1 Compulsory Evacuation Device
1 Zombyra the Dark
1 Spirit Reaper
1 Giant Trunade
1 Mirror Force
1 D.D. Crow

I played well enough at the event, though I did need some time to 'warm up' early on and made quite a few mistakes in my first round match (like forgetting to use the 'free' Destiny Draw I got off Diamond Dude, biggest misplay I made all day). Luckily, I ironed those out after the first game and was back on form for the rest of the day. I faced off against T-DaD 4 times (both players twice) and the games were a little tricky for different reasons. Against Tom it was the Solemns and triple Caius (along with the fear of Plasma hitting the field) which posed the biggest threat and Alex's Necro Gardnas and tricky tech but I won through in the end.

The Skill Drain side is officially pointless in my meta as there's not enough decks that I don't already have a big advantage over already to warrant using them. Also, when I did side in the suite, Zombyra was doing nothing for me other than being Allure bait. The rest of the side was fine, as was the main. Mystic Tomato = free Krebons most of the time.

Overall I was happy with the event and can now relax a little since I've qualified for the Fortune Tour Finals (I also won the Hobby League by a huge margin).


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Tech Time : Compulsory Evacuation Device

This week's tech card is Compulsory Evacuation device, a card with a very simple effect that rarely saw play in the past, but with the advent of Synchros, it's a card worth considering.

The main reason it wasn't played in the past is because of 'card advantage', a theory which many believe is the most important in the game. (Personally, I believe it is important, but not to the point where every game is won or lost because of it) Kicking a monster back to the hand was essentially a 'minus 1' as your opponent would still have the same amount of cards in control and you would have one less (the spent Evacuation). While that is still the case, the recent introduction of Synchro Monsters to the game of Yu-Gi-Oh! is the single biggest factor in the rise of play this card has seen. The reason? Synchros burn up resources. For the standard Synchro Summon you are giving up (at least) 2 monsters in order to summon a bigger one. If you had to play other cards to get those 2 cards out, then that's more that you risk losing if your Synchro is gone. What Compulsory does essentially is remove the Synchro monster for 'free' as it goes back to the Extra Deck and not to the Hand, which eliminates the card's inherent 'minus 1'. Depending on how your opponent set up the Synchro Summon Compulsory can even be a 'plus 1' at times, but that isn't what matters, it's the fact that the monster is gone and would take another 2-3 cards to bring back.

The card has the usual downsides though. First, it's a trap card and comes with all the negative aspects of that type. Secondly, outside of kicking back a Synchro or a similarly 'costly' monster it is not much use, especially if your opponent can just summon it again that turn. (think Judgment Dragon, Test Tiger or Grandmaster of the Six Samurai). Finally, it's dead against Thought Ruler Archfiend, the only Synchro Monster with a built-in target protection effect. I think the best way to describe this card would be to call it an 'alternative Phoenix Wing Wind Blast'. It's slightly weaker, but has no cost in comparison. Worthy of a side-deck slot or 2 in my opinion.


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I was meant to write up 'Playing to Win : Part 4' yesterday in its regular Tuesday slot, but unfortunately, I had a lot of other things to do aswell and it had to take a back seat. My apologies to anybody that was waiting for it, it will be up next week instead.


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Weekend Reports

Fortune Tour Cup - Limerick

Standings (Swiss):
1st: [4-0] PJ Tierney
2nd: [3-1] Christopher M.
(Fusion Heroes)
3rd: [3-1]Evan B.
(Macro Monarchs)
4th: [3-1] Niall O' C.
(Synchro Samurai)
5th: [3-1] Kieran D.
6th: [2-2] Kim W.
(Crystal Beasts)
7th: [2-2] Kieran W.
8th: [2-2] Eamonn H.

PJ Tierney [defeated] Eamonn H.
Niall O' C. [defeated] Kieran D.
Christopher M. [defeated] Kieran W.
Evan B. [defeated] Kim W.

Niall O' C. [defeated] PJ Tierney
Chris M. [defeated] Evan B.

Chris M. [defeated] Niall O' C.

Hobby League : Cork (Week 3 of 4)

Standings (Swiss):
1st: [5-0] PJ Tierney
2nd: [4-1] Alex H.
3rd: [3-2] David D.
(Decree Monarchs)
4th: [3-2] Thomas S.
5th: [3-2] Brian A.
6th: [3-2] Kenneth W.
(Warrior Toolbox)
7th: [3-2] Seamus A.
(Macro/Oppression Gadgets)
8th: [3-2] Stephen O' D.

PJ Tierney [defeated] Stephen O' D.
Thomas S. [defeated] Brian A.
Seamus A. [defeated] Alex H.
Kenneth W. [defeated] David D.

Thomas S. [defeated] PJ Tierney
Seamus A. [defeated] Kenneth W.

Thomas S. [defeated] Seamus A.


Getting knocked out in the smis twice in a row is slightly annoying, but I did okay. I was kind of chancing my luck by running the same deck 3 weeks in a row but I'm not blaming my losses on that. I felt that i played pretty well this weekend, bar one or 2 stupid misplays here and there. In the Limerick event the Samurai player was maining Shadow-Imprisoning Mirror which caused me a lot of trouble. Eventually it all came down to a 'live or die' roll with a Snipe Hunter and I rolled 1/6 twice in a row. On the Sunday I was playing really well, though I had a few tight games. I ended up losing in the mirror due to a dodgy hand and couldn't make a comeback.

The deck without D-Darws worked well over the last 3 weeks, but it does have its flaws. For a start it cannot finish games off as swiftly as a D-Draw build. (in one game I was on 14,000 to my opponents 1,400 and couldn't force the final damage through) The deck also falls to 'trump cards' too easily. I think I'll revert to the 'standard' build again and work on a few things this week.


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Looking Ahead : Secret Village of the Spellcasters

Until we know Gladiator Beast Retiari's effect (been hearing rumours that it's an 1800/1000 card that destroys face-up's and can't 'tag out') I'm just going to have to find some other things to feature in the meantime. After looking at the Crossroads of Chaos spoiler this week's card caught my attention and could have a lot of potential.

Secret Village of the Spellcasters
Field Spell
If you control only Spellcaster-Type monsters, your opponent cannot activate Spell Cards. If you control no Spellcaster-Type monsters, you cannot activate Spell Cards.

Spellcasters just got a big trump card against the best decks of the format with this. The 'good part' of the card should be easy to fulfill, with cards like Magician's Circle and Magical Exemplar keeping your field presence throughout the game. Once you get that effect off you can cause a lot of trouble for your opponent, especially T-DaD players who almost 'need' to play 5-6 Spell Cards a turn to get their deck going. With this card being 'live' and the right protection, you can lock your opponent out of the game quite easily and you'll need to as the flipside of this card can be just as devastating to you. Having no spellcasters means having no spells and that could be quite the problem depending on what way the deck is built (I haven't seen any Secret Village decks online so I don't know how they work, but I presume they can play around the negative effect of this card).

There isn't really much else to say about the card, it's a simple, balanced effect that you should watch out for come Christmas time.


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The Archive : Twenty Turn Clock

Around this time last year myself and Jeff T. (another Limerick player) were working on decks for the upcoming Pharaoh Tour (it's re-named the Fortune Tour this year) Qualifier. I was in my usual state of tryi8ng out too many different decks and having nothing to run on the day, while Jeff was running Zombies. The day before the event we were doing some testing and his deck was failing. After a bit of snooping around the Internet we found this article and Jeff built the deck (with a few minor changes). The next day I scrubbed in the event (I ran Demise for some strange reason) while he won with Final Countdown. While I don't think the deck can be competitive in the current format (which is incredibly fast) I still like the deck and wouldn't mind building a casual version sometime soon.


Twenty Turn Clock: Part 1
Kevin Cavanagh

Looking over the last thirty-two decks from the Shonen Jumps in Detroit and Phoenix one thing became very clear…this metagame has grown just about as stale as you can get. Every decklist looks the same for the most part. 90% of the decklists from the event are built around the same Machine Aggro engine or a Monarch based control build. I remember at least when Demise was in the metagame people were trying to play everything to beat it. I see so much originality and creativity when people are complaining about One-Turn-Kills and then none once the metagame settles down. Perhaps its because nothing can beat these two decks; maybe Raiza was that last little thing that monarch decks needed to make sure that nothing else can be played in the metagame.

All that being said, there was really only one deck that stood out as original and creative that was available for me to look at on metagame. Devin Djuricin had his deck reviewed on metagame by Jason Grabher-Meyer when he was X-2 at a Shonen Jump simply because there was nothing better and original to review from the X-1 and above tables. The deck in question is a build based off of the card Final Countdown, one of the game's most drawn out and hard to be consistent win conditions.

Jason gave a little review on metagame on the day of the event, but I plan to expand on his analysis and then change the deck up a little as I think the deck has one huge weakness. However, before I get into all that…the deck…

Devin Djuricin
Shonen Jump Detroit
Deck Title: Twenty-Turn Clock

3 Final Countdown
3 Lava Golem
1 Morphing Jar
3 Solemn Judgment
1 Spirit Reaper
3 Threatening Roar

1 Giant Trunade
1 Level Limit - Area B
3 Magical Mallet
3 Messenger of Peace
3 Nightmare's Steelcage
1 Scapegoat
1 Swords of Revealing Light
3 Upstart Goblin

1 Gravity Bind
3 Jar of Greed
3 Thunder of Ruler
3 Waboku

Analyzing the Deck – Card Selection
Even though every article I have the same “Card Selection” subject title right after the decklist…it's more like “Tech Selection” for most of the decks that I right. For the most part, your typical deck you see nowadays at any event will have the same base set of cards. If your opponent is playing monarchs he's going to have 7-8 monarchs, Brain Controls and Soul Exchanges, Dekos and Spies, etc. Machines will have Cyber Dragons, Troopers, Dekos, Limiter Removal, and Chimeratech possibility. With a deck like this, card selection is more important then ever because you're making something that doesn't have a unique design out there for you to follow. For the most part – every decision you make is yours and yours alone, which is why people tend to shy away from making decks that don't look like others. Let's analyze this particular deck piece by piece…

The Weakness
3 Lava Golem
1 Spirit Reaper
3 Nightmare's Steelcage
3 Messenger of Peace
1 Scapegoat
1 Swords of Revealing Light
1 Level Limit – Area B
3 Waboku
3 Threatening Roar
3 Thunder of Ruler
1 Gravity Bind

This is what I believe is the weakest part of the deck that Devin made. I think he packs the deck with may too much stall and he would almost need to rely on Solemn Judgement in the monarch matchup to show up. Solemn has to deal with Mobius the Frost Monarch coming out of the board (out of the main in some matchups) as well as needing to stop the main problems of Mystical Space Typhoon, Heavy Storm, and the growing in popularity Giant Trunade. This makes Waboku and Threatening Roar have the greatest importance to the deck. Solemn can only go so far, so using it on the big threats like Heavy Storm and Mystical Space Typhoon is your optimal play with this deck. Follow that up with using Waboku and Threatening Roar when Dekoichis / Mystic Tomatoes are trying to sneak past your Messengers and when your opponent goes for a Giant Trunade and you have the basic principals of how the deck is able to stall the game out without making a misplay.

The big weakness I see with this deck is the “one big turn” that turns the game around. Monarchs can do it with Monarchs and support cards given the chance and Machines need 2 monsters and a Limiter Removal for the most part and they can get it done. When playing the deck you should think of it like this…if your opponent gets one battle phase where they cannot be stopped, you're likely going to lose the game. Point blank.

Changes to “The Weakness”
-3 Lava Golem
-2 Messenger of Peace

Those would be the four cards I would take out from the portion of the deck I outlined above. Lava Golem might be useful in game one, but a good player that you would see at the upper tables will never allow you to beat him with a Lava Golem. Messenger of Peace is good, but it simply can't stop some of the things that monarchs and machines have to offer. Cyber Phoenix, Gravekeeper's Spy, Mystic Tomato, and countless other thing are going to run right through that. If you can keep the amount of cards you have to commit low, that would be optimal. Messenger of Peace could mean you need to commit more to the field when your opponent drops something small.

The deck doesn't have a whole lot of drawing power. Let's face facts, running effectively two monsters on your side of the table basically means they're getting blown up every single time by an Exiled Force, Nobleman of Crossout, or the growing in popularity Snipe Hunter. While Morphing Jar is huge if you get it to go off, I wouldn't count on your chances being all that amazing of it ever going off in a game. Your drawing power is limited to Upstart Goblin and Jar of Greed, both of which are being run in a full playset. I think the deck needs a bit more, so these are my changes.

+2 Reckless Greed
+1 Mystical Space Typhoon
+1 Mirror Force
+1 Torrential Tribute

Even good players won't see the Mirror Force and Torrential coming down from you. When you play against stall you don't expect to see destruction, which is why having the two biggest heavy hitters will take a lot of people off guard. Expect to see a lot of players commit everything they have to the field, just to get ready whenever they can get rid of your Messenger / Gravity Bind / whatever is currently halting them. Mystical Space Typhoon is what you want to see in those situations, as they will expect a Waboku when they get a Mirror Force to the face. Mystical in our deck is simply for Royal Decree coming in game 1. You auto-lose if a Royal Decree is turn face up against you. Solemn can't stop anything once it gets flipped up and then the “one big turn” is close and near. Reckless Greed – draw lots of cards. That's about all it is there for.

How the deck wins
The deck has only one win condition and that's wining via Final Countdown. Final Countdown has be to activated for twenty turns (effectively ten opponents battle phases) in order for you to win. It also costs 3000 life points to play, so you are basically going into every game working with a 5000 life point count. The deck has no way to gain life; so don't expect to come back from any strike larger then 5000. You need to draw Final Countdown and play it as quickly as possible. You can concern yourself with living once you set your opponent to a clock and put the pressure on them. Activate every Upstart Goblin when you draw it and set every Jar of Greed and Reckless Greed the turn you draw them as well. Draw as often as possible and don't ever hesitate to play Final Countdown the second you draw it. There's no use waiting around for anything…every turn matters when you play this deck.

The Nine
Waboku, Threatening Roar, and that other one that is only played in this deck all become the focus of what you want to draw once Final Countdown is activated. If you can wait and not use any until you play Final Countdown that would be optimal. With the draw power of the deck, you're likely to draw 5-6 of them by the time the ten turns is up, which gives your opponent a grand total of 4-5 attack steps to kill you. If they simply don't have the magic and trap destruction in a game when the countdown is running, you win. Take as much damage as you can in the early game if it isn't going to be lethal to you. If your opponent swings for 4800 on turn 2 and you've all ready paid the 3000 to Final Countdown, take it. That's one less turn you have to worry about keeping yourself alive. Only use resources when you cannot live. If you know you're opponent plays burn…you're kind of in a bad matchup anyway.

Breaking it down – One Simple Rule
Your entire game comes down to how fast you can draw Final Countdown. Your deck must be forty cards and you will Magical Mallet for the maximum every time you don't have Final Countdown in your hand. Don't keep any of “The Nine” or anything else back if you don't have the winning card in the first place. That's the only rule when you play this deck…Final Countdown as soon as possible and figure out the rest as you go along.

With the lack of anything new to write about yet, I will pick up next week where I have left off this week. We still have to review the two biggest matchups you will face right now (Monarchs and Machines), as well as construct a decent sideboard and also be ready for what you should expect to come out of your opponents sideboard.

Until Next Week,

Kevin Cavanagh
Amp- We run through you.

Discussion Thread

As I've said before, I like the deck, but it is going to be very difficult to create a version for this format. If I get tired of T-DaD, Gladiator Beasts or my 'third deck' (more on that once I actually get the cards for it) I might give Final Countdown a go in the coming months.


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Tech Time : Kycoo the Ghost Destroyer

The recent Shonen Jump Championship was certainly an eventful one, the reign of Gladiator Beasts fell like Rome and there is a new deck at the top: Teleport Dark Armed (T-DaD). With this, people will eventually start running cards that would have previously been "Gyzarus'd" to kingdom come and new (or returning) tech will see play. This week's card is one of those.

Kycoo the Ghost Destroyer was (to my knowledge, I've only been playing competitively since 2007) initially a tech choice during the Chaos era, stopping your opponent from removing a Light and Dark to summon one of the Envoys while also cutting their Light/Dark count down to zero whenever possible. With T-DaD doing similar things with the Graveyard Kycoo can rise again. First off, it prevents your opponent from removing Destiny Hero - Malicious to summon a second and set up a Synchro Summon. It also makes Necro Gardna a dead card and prevents Dark Armed Dragon from wrecking your field. It also stops your opponent from playing D.D. Crow, which is always a good thing, especially in the mirror match. In fact, it's the mirror-match where this card will see most play. From the few mirror-matches I've played in already, whoever got out Kycoo first would be able to control the game unless the opponent could find quick answers and the card has been so useful to me in other matchups that I might even consider main-decking a copy in the near future.

It's also an 1800ATK beatstick which is the highest(usual) ATK score most decks can bring out independently of other cards. In addition to that, most of today's top decks are very grave-orientated. T-DaD has already been explained, Gladiator Beasts usually set up their major plays through Gladiator Beast Darius and Lightsworn kicks its entire deck to the grave in a matter of turns. Having a Kycoo out (with whatever protection is relevant) can potentially shut down most of these deck's big plays. Come November it will also be a reliable ally against Zombies, which get a huge boost from Crossroads of Chaos. The card is also a Dark monster , which has many obvious plus-sides.

The card (like every other card in the game) is not without its shortcomings though. That 1800ATK will make this card fall to Crush Card Virus and Bottomless Trap Hole, and it needs to do battle to start hurting your opponent's grave. Its defence is pretty low too so a quick Enemy Controller/Book of Moon can leave it in a vulnerable state. The Dark attribute also means its first effect can be negated by Shadow-Imprisoning Mirror and you will take 1,000 points of damage if a Caius hits the field.

Other than that though, it is a solid card, and worth taking up 2 slots in your side-deck at the very least.


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