Tuesday, 6 December 2016

ACQ Prep Work: Part 2 - Deck Techs and Card Choices

CardWatch 2K16: December + Meta Discussion December 2016

Cosmic Cyclone takes the lead as the most desired and preferred spell/trap removal of the format. Mystical Space Typhoon is similarly a one-for-one card exchange, but carries the danger of trigger Artifact monsters' effect and allowing Elemental Triangle of the Zoodiac Beast to be reused as an xyz material. Twin Twister pushes the user to usually go for a two-for-one card exchange to stop Elemental Triangle of the Zoodiac Beast, which is a very disadvantageous move, taking card economics and resources into consideration.

This shift in preference has made it very tough for other decks to survive in the metagame, needing to face Cosmic Cyclone in Game 1, usually played at three copies now, but previously in the Side Deck. Zoodiac Beast decks now have a better Game 1 and answer to decks like Metalfoes which can lose their set Metalfoes Spell/Trap for good. Kozmo, having had an underwhelming debut in the OCG, can lose their field spell without a search to replace the lost card. ABC decks pummel further into the void; equipped Union monsters are now in the danger of being removed from play, making the path to summon ABC-Dragon Buster even harsher. As if Zoodiac Beast Drancia's presence to destroy Union Hangar wasn't sufficient, the union monsters which top the Metagame in the initial weeks is now nowhere to be seen.
Torrential Tribute reemerged in the competitive scene and is becoming more and more popular, being capable of nuking the field during the opponent's turn, punishing them for overextending. More Zoodiac Beast players are seen including them at two copies in the Main Deck. This act can also be seen as an answer to players who neglected to include Starlight Road, which has seemingly lost its effectiveness for now, after players found ways to play around it, such as Cosmic Cyclone and Forbidden Apocrypha.

Others find The Huge Revolution is Over as a better answer to mass destruction spells, especially when players find themselves in a situation whereby they are forced into conservative plays, ending their turn with only a single Zoodiac Beast Drancia, and falling prey to Interrupted Kaiju Slumber the next turn. The Huge Revolution is Over stands a better chance at stopping Interrupted Kaiju Slumber when the opponent, too, has a monster on his field, as opposed to Starlight Road which has an activation requirement of the owner's two cards to be placed under destruction. Being a counter trap also meant that the opponent is unable to leverage on the special summon by reacting and activating Maxx "C". Instead of a destruction, The Huge Revolution is Over banishes the chained target, disallowing Interrupted Kaiju Slumber to be used for a search in the graveyard; yet another factor to be considered when choosing between the two.

ABC has fallen off the map, being unable to keep up with the competition, but Metalfoes remain relevant, enlisting the aid of the Zoodiac Beast themselves to level the playing field. With plenty of Level3s in the deck, they are able to summon M-X Saber Invoker with relative ease. The persistence of Metalfoes has hence kept players wary and continued to side Anti-Spell Fragrance in the deck builds, whereas the counter to the union machines - System Down - were confidently removed from the Side Deck. However, Metalfoes deck find themselves having an easier time against floodgate traps now, with the ability to access Zoodiac Beast Drancia as an out.

Forbidden Chalice and Book of Moon has always been a popular counter to Drancia since Zoodiac Beast's debut, but the former took it up the notch as it can be used to negate monster effects during a chaining sequence. Thus players find it easier to bait out an opposing valid threat. Chalice is also capable of negating Artifact monster effects, something which Book of Moon is unable to provide.

Solemn Strike has also seen lesser play, seeing how it gets destroyed easily via spell/trap destruction. The 1500LP also brings the user closer to danger, taking into consideration how much damage Zoodiac Beast decks can deal in a single turn. Instead, the reactive Dimensional Boundary has took its place, having no cost embedded into it and at the same time, is a more responsive threat since it can be chained to spell/trap destruction.

On tomorrow's article, we will take a look at some common Side Deck options as well as a few unorthodox ones. 

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