Deck Doctor #3: Gadgetless Gadgets and Gladiator Beasts

Hey readers, this week we’re going to start off by taking a look at Liam Love’s nameless deck:

3 Madolche Magileine
3 Photon Sabre Tiger
3 Wind-Up Rabbit
2 Tragoedia
2 Spirit Reaper
3 Thunder King Rai-Oh
1 Maxx "C"
1 Book of Moon
1 Dark Hole
2 Forbidden Chalice
1 Heavy Storm
1 Monster Reborn
1 Pot of Avarice
2 Pot of Duality
2 Soul Taker
2 The Seal of Orichalcos
2 Bottomless Trap Hole
2 Dimensional Prison
2 Fiendish Chain
1 Solemn Judgment
2 Solemn Warning
2 Torrential Tribute
1 Abyss Dweller
1 Fairy King Albverdich
1 Gagaga Gunman
1 Leviair the Sea Dragon
1 Madolche Queen Tiaramisu
1 Maestroke the Symphony Djinn
1 Number 16: Shock Master
1 Number 17: Leviathan Dragon
1 Number 30: Acid Golem
1 Number 39: Utopia
1 Photon Papilloperative
1 Steelswarm Roach
1 Temtempo the Percussion Djinn
1 Wind-Up Carrier Zenmaity
1 Wind-Up Zenmaines

So this deck plays a bunch of value monsters, simplifies the game with spells and traps, and rides the value creatures to victory. Wind-up Rabbit functions like a Gadget. In traditional Gadget decks, the purpose of a Gadget was basically as a burn spell that replaced itself. They gave you a win condition. Wind-up Rabbit is a Gadget that you can’t draw multiple copies of, and you can’t really run out of. Magileine fills a similar role in being an endless gadget. So really, this is just a gadgetless, traditional Gadget deck at heart. It plays a bunch of one for ones in the spells/traps, and has difficult to handle monsters to close the game out.

To start, we’re going to cut the 3 Photon Sabre Tigers. 17 Monsters is a bit high, and you have enough redundant win conditions in Magileine, and Rabbit. Tiger is the worst of the 3 (unless you run Horn of the Phantom Beast, which is a route I considered for awhile.) So we’re going to cut them.  I’m still not the biggest fan of Maxx “C”, especially not in decks like this, so I’m cutting that as well.

We want our spells/traps to help simplify the game, which Forbidden Chalice doesn’t do very well. Cutting Tiger also removes a bit of the utility this card provided. Pot of Avarice doesn’t do very much. Magileine don’t go to the grave, Rabbits never die, and aside from that you don’t have many monsters, so the chances Pot will be live are pretty low. Running more than 1 Seal isn’t something I like doing, it just feels so bad when you draw both copies.

Into the traps, I’m cutting both Fiendish Chains. Yeah, it’s nice to be able to negate effects, but it doesn’t actually get their monster off the field, so it doesn’t really help you advance your plan of killing them when their monster is bigger than all of yours. Chain is best in decks that either have monsters capable of destroying big things either in battle or for free, or in decks that just don’t care about the opponent having a field (like Watts.) Sure this deck has Tragoedia, but that’s only 2 cards, and this deck certainly can’t ignore the opposing field.

The cuts in summary:
-3 Photon Sabre Tiger
-1 Maxx “c”
-2 Forbidden Chalice
-1 The Seal of Orichalcos
-1 Pot of Avarice
-2 Fiendish Chain

So now onto the additions, you probably want around 15 or 16 monsters, which means we can add 2 or 3 monsters. I’m adding 2 Tour Guide from the Underworld and 1 Sangan. This deck actually makes great use of Tour Guide, as you can make a Zenmaighty off of 2 Tour Guides to search up Rabbit. If you can protect the boat for a turn, your Tour Guide turns into 2 almost unkillable monsters. Sangan doesn’t have anything great to search for, but it should always have something to search for. It starts your Magileine chain, or searches for a Wind-up Rabbit.

For traps, I’m adding 2 Mirror Force. While I’m not a huge fan of this card right now, this kind of deck needs as much removal as it can play. I’m also adding 2 Compulsory Evacuation Device, while this card isn’t very good versus Water or Fire Fist, it isn’t completely useless either, and in the matchups where this card is good, it’s very good. It also has a kind of synergy with Spirit Reaper, where you can bounce their only monster and break even by attacking them with Reaper.

Lastly, I’m going to add 2 copies of Forbidden Lance, this card is exceptional against the Fire Fist deck, and there aren’t any matchups where it’s bad. Worst case, it protects the Thunder King. This drops the deck count down to 40.

Additions in summary:
+2 Tour Guide from the Underworld
+1 Sangan
+2 Mirror Force
+2 Compulsory Evacuation Device
+2 Forbidden Lance

Some other things I considered doing with the deck was instead of cutting the Sabre Tigers, I was going to cut the Magileines,  then throw in Tenkis, Bears, and Horns of the Phantom Beast, which while might be better, I felt it was too much of a revamp of the deck for this kind of article. However, if you’re interested in what that would’ve looked like, here is the list I came up with:

3 Wind-up Rabbit
3 Photon Sabre Tiger
3 Brotherhood of the Fire Fist – Bear
1 Brotherhood of the Fire Fist - Gorilla
2 Tour Guide from the Underworld
1 Cardcar D
1 Sangan
3 Fire Formation - Tenki
2 Pot of Duality
2 Forbidden Lance
1 Dark Hole
1 Monster Reborn
3 Horn of the Phantom Beast
2 Mirror Force
2 Bottomless Trap Hole
2 Torrential Tribute
2 Solemn Warning
2 Compulsory Evacuation Device
2 Starlight Road
1 Fire Formation - Tensen
1 Solemn Judgment

The biggest benefit of going with this variant is you get access to Bear, who off Tenki is a Breaker the Magical Warrior for monsters. You also get Horn of the Phantom Beast, one of the best trap cards ever printed. Something worth testing if you have all the cards.

Next, we’re going to take a look at Andrew Rivera’s Gladiator Beast deck:

1 Gladiator Beast Bestiari
2 Gladiator Beast Darius
2 Gladiator Beast Equeste
2 Gladiator Beast Laquari
1 Gladiator Beast Murmillo
1 Gladiator Beast Retiari
1 Vorse Raider
1 Thunder King Rai-Oh
1 Gorz, Emissary of Darkness
1 Gladiator Beast Hoplomus

2 Fire Formation Tenki
2 Gladiator Proving Ground
3 Forbidden Lance
2 Mystical Space Typhoon
1 Book of Moon
1 Monster Reborn
1 Heavy Storm
1 Dark Hole

3 Gladiator Beast War Chariot
2 Dimensional Prison
2 Bottomless Trap Hole
2 Solemn Warning
1 Solemn Judgment
1 Torrential Tribute
1 Deck Devistation Virus
1 Compulsory Evacuation Device
1 Starlight Road

Now, I’m sure most of you know what Gladiator Beasts do, but for those of you who don’t, they are a group of monsters who when they attack, and the end of the battle phase they “Tag out” for another Gladiator Beast monster. They generate incremental card advantage with Equeste and Murmillo, and have big power plays with Gyzarus and Heraklinos. There is also an angle the deck has where it can lock out opposing monster effects with War Chariot, then keep using Equeste to rebuy the Chariot every turn. The deck is basically a control deck with a huge reliance on the Battle Phase.

I’m going to start off by cutting the Vorse Raider and the Deck Devastation Virus. Yeah, when you resolve DDV it’s a blowout, but when you draw the Vorse Raider it’s pretty miserable, or if you draw the DDV without one of your 3 cards that make it live, it’s also pretty miserable. You never really want to sac your Gyzarus in order to use DDV, so I’m just going to cut them. Leave the cute DDV tricks to the decks that are running Vorse Raider anyway for powerful cards like Rabbit. You’re basically playing 2 targets for DDV, since only Tenki makes it live.

I have a personal rule to not play Gorz in any deck that plays Starlight Road. If your deck wants to play Starlight, then you probably maintain a large enough backrow that Gorz will be dead more often than it will be live, especially with cards like War Chariot, and Tenki which just sit around.

In the format we have right now, people aren’t doing much in the way of attacking facedown monsters, so Hoplomus is pretty bad. I’m cutting him as well.

Singletons of cards like Thunder King have never been something I’ve been very fond of. You never really have it when you want it, and it doesn’t have much synergy with the rest of your deck. In the matchups where they’re great, you can board in a playset, but I don’t see much benefit in a 1-of.

Your spell lineup looks solid, but from the Traps I’m going to cut the two Dimensional Prisons, I’ll explain why later.

The cuts in summary:
-1 Vorse Raider
-1 Deck Devastation Virus
-1 Gladiator Beast Hoplomus
-1 Gorz, Emissary of Darkness
-1 Thunder King Rai-Oh
-2 Dimensional Prison

This leaves us with 7 slots for additions. Again, like the previous list, if your deck plays Tenkis, I also like playing Bears. Bear is especially good in here though, as his effect can be used to clear the way for your Gladiators to tag, and Tensen provides a very strong effect for this deck that relies so heavily on the battle phase. I’m adding 2 Bear and 1 Tensen. I’m also adding a 3rd Tenki to make the bears a little more consistent. You’re also going to want to find room in your extra for a Tiger King.

Fire Formation - Tensu is a cool card for this deck too. Bear searches for it, and it can be used to make quick Gyzaruses, or simply to establish a field in order to get more tags. Seems like a 1-of worth running, worst case, it’s Bear fodder.

I cut the Dimensional Prisons in order to make room for Mirror Force. At the beginning of the format, decks like Heroes and Chaos Dragons made Dimensional Prison the better card, but now with both of those decks losing a lot of popularity, Mirror Force is the better card again.

The additions in summary:
+2 Brotherhood of the Fire Fist – Bear
+1 Fire Formation – Tensen
(+1 Brotherhood of the Fire Fist – Tiger King)
+1 Fire Formation – Tensu
+1 Fire Formation – Tenki
+2 Mirror Force

You also sent in a side deck, so let’s give that a quick look as well:
2 Cyber Dragon
1 Spirit Reaper
1 Thunder King Rai-Oh
2 Dimensional Fissure
1 Mystical Space Typhoon
2 Soul Drain
1 Needle Ceiling
1 Deck Devastation Virus
1 Torrential Tribute
1 Compulsory Evacuation Device
2 Dust Tornado

So obviously we can cut the DDV. Aside from that, I’m going to cut the two Dust Tornados, and the Spirit Reaper. Reaper doesn’t seem like you really want it for any matchups.

I’m going to add 1 Fire Fist Gorilla, who fills the role of Dust Tornado for destroying annoying backrow, except Gorilla is also searchable by Tenki making it a higher impact card, while also taking up less slots. I talked about boarding all 3 Thunder Kings while discussing the main, and I’m going to fill up the rest of the board with them.

By my next article, we should have the banlist, so my next article will be converting people’s decks into the next format. Submit your decklists here:

Until next time readers, remember to play hard or go home!