Was Reborn Tengu exactly what the player base wanted or was it something greater? Yu-gi-oh players have been asking Konami for years for some sort of card that would bring a balance into all decks in the game. The player base was first given Pot of Duality which gave all decks a steady draw engine at the cost of their special summons for the turn. This allowed the players the ability to get there combo pieces a turn earlier and have the ability to establish their field during the next turn. Pot of Duality was the answer to the draw aspect of the game; however, Reborn Tengu was said to be the answer for a universal monster.
Kevin Tewart, head of research and development at Konami, gave the players a cheap and effective monster that would soon turn the game of Yu-gi-oh into a messed up world. Reborn Tengu’s strength came from being mandatory and cheap for all the players. This alone created a dark cloud over the North America World Championship Qualifier for 2011. Reborn Tengu was everywhere during the NAWCQ this year and ruined many weekends for players there. The players got what they had asked for a strong monster and a cheap one at that. The dark cloud was caused by their own doing and it forced many players to play Tengu in decks in which he had no business being in. Such a powerful card created mass hysteria and has led to power creep in this game. Why would such a powerful card lead to the biggest event in the year being ruined?
Yu-gi-oh players have complained about every NAWCQ being a terrible event because Konami has wanted to have faster formats to keep things simpler for the larger events. The 2009 format was taken over by Rescue Cat and Dark Strike Fighter. 2010 had the most dangerous one turn kill deck the game had seen in a very long time. 2011 was in the same shape as the previous events since Reborn Tengu has too much power by himself allowed simple replacement. The past few years have had a lot of power creep and it may continue to be this way as long as powerful cards like this continue to be released. Is it Reborn Tengu’s mandatory power that makes him powerful or is it something even deeper?
Reborn Tengu’s power creep comes from his ability to be used as syncro material and simply replacing himself since he is mandatory. (No word on Reborn Tengu in regards to XYZ summons yet.) Other cases have come up in which players simply have to play Tengu in order to deal with Tengu. Talk about the “if you can’t beat them join them phrase.” Tengu could have been a perfectly designed card if he did not get his effect with syncroing. We could talk about its design flaws infinitely but this does not change the fact that he already exist. It is up to us players to change what we have asked for and hope our words can reach Konami.
The player’s got exactly what they had asked for, a cheap and powerful monster that would work in any and all decks. A card that was designed to speed up the process of all games and insure that players would get the job done much faster is exactly what Reborn Tengu is. Now that the problem has been established it is up the players to watch their wishes and hope there mistake can be cleaned up on the September ban list. It is not Konami’s fault for releasing this card is the doing of the players. We simply got what we were asking for.