Finally the time has come. Going into YCS Miami I had no idea what I was going to run at first until the TCG Exclusives were announced. And then I saw him. The card that instantly changed everything for me, the card that made me instantly know what I would be running... Mermail Abyssteus.
You can discard 1 other WATER monster to the Graveyard; Special Summon this card from your hand. When you do: Add 1 Level 4 or lower "Mermail" monster from your Deck to your hand. You can only use this effect of "Mermail Abyssteus" once per turn.
Every once in awhile, there are cards which people dismiss as good, like Tour Guide, and I cannot seem to understand why. Abyssteus is ALMOST like that. Some like it, but say there isnt room for it, some people dont like it at all, very few people actually believe Abyssteus is the way to go for the Mermail deck. If you follow regionals and forums, the general consensus is that there really isnt a place for Abyssteus in the Mermail deck. This is 100% wrong.
When first toying around with Abyssteus I was still running the Undine engine, but quickly I came to the conclusion that, this is far from what I should be doing. The deck has seen a lot of changes since then, but in the end, Billy and I basically came to the same agreements bar a few cards, and we both ended up top 4'ing our regionals last weekend. This is what we ran, with a few minor changes. This may change a few cards by the time this is released at YCS Miami, but the general concept will be the same.
3 Atlantean Dragoons
1 Atlantean Infantry
3 Atlantean Marksman
3 Deepsea Diva
2 Mermail Abyssgunde
1 Mermail Abyssleed
3 Mermail Abysslinde
3 Mermail Abyssmegalo
3 Mermail Abysspike
3 Mermail Abyssteus
1 Dark Hole
2 Forbidden Lance
1 Heavy Storm
1 Mind Control
1 Monster Reborn
3 Mystical Space Typhoon
1 Pot of Avarice
3 Abyss Sphere
1 Solemn Judgment
1 Ally of Justice Catastor
1 Armory Arm
1 Black Rose Dragon
1 Dewloren Tiger of the Ice Barrier
1 Gungnir Dragon of the Ice Barrier
1 Scrap Dragon
1 TG Hyper Librarian
1 Abyss Dweller
1 Gachi Gachi Gantetsu
2 Mermail Abyssgaios
2 Big Eye
1 Leviathan Dragon
1 Wind-up Zenmaines
Of course the first thing you notice is, the no Undine engine. And to be frank, I'm so happy I dont have to run that crap anymore. I havent missed it for one second.
The first thing Billy and I realized about this deck, is that its entirely different from the previous Mermail deck. You literally were forced to relearn everything you knew. The old Mermail deck had a TON of plays and options, which is part of the reason it was so powerful, but now the multitude of plays has increased ten fold, making things even more complicated. And that's exactly the way I like it.
Besides Abyssteus, Gunde and Leed are new additions to the Monster lineup of the Pure Mermail deck. Gunde in combination with Abyssteus/Megalo is the heart and soul of the deck, allowing you to create giant fields that are better then ever before, and also allowing you to create one of the most powerful and underated Xyz Monsters in the game right now... Mermail Abyssgaios.
Easily, Gaios is 90% of the time the decks win condition. You can make it turn 1 so easily, without losing any advantage. This means decks like Wind-ups and Fire Fist have really lack luster opening turns without something like Dark Hole. Opening up with Gaios also means you have another amazing card to back you up if they somehow deal with your Gaios... and that is Abyss Squall.
If I ever go into a turn 1 Gaios, I will usually search a Squall off of my Megalo. This means if they were to have an out to my Gaios, I can just make another one on the next turn (Or something like Big Eye if needed).
1 Infantry was decided because it's just been a really poor card in general, and the only time I ever use it is when I bring it in off of a Diva, I never really want to draw him.
Abyssleed as a 1 of was iffy to me at first, but as I used him I really started to like him. His 2700 attack is what makes him shine, and you can bring him in off of a Gunde or Linde super easily. His effect actually is pretty decent too, most the time my field ends with something like Megalo/Steus + Leed and a Spike, so I will tribute the Spike to send a card, then make Gaios after.
Spike at 3 is so that you have the better chance of opening with Dragoon + a discard outlet, and the third Spike is an easy card to side out game 2/3. Basically, any time you open up with Dragoon + Discard outlet in this deck, its extremely hard to lose unless your opponent has the anti-nuts hand for you.
2 Forbidden Lance helps protect Gaios from things he hates, especially Compulsory. It also allows Gaios to negate the effects of any monster larger then him (Like Black Luster Soldier) by shrinking their attack.
Now, briefly I will touch on my ARG Regional experience.
There was 9 round, and in the end I faced off against 3 Mermail Decks, 2 Wind-up Decks, 2 Machina decks, 1 Fire Fist Deck, and 1 X-Saber. My losses were round 1 against Wind-ups, where in game 3 I had a set Linde and Gozen match, and he went Typhoon, D-Fissure, Rat > Shark > Shark, while my 2nd loss was in the final round to Fire Fist. I think if I was less tired I would have won this game, because I think I misplayed in game 3. It basically came down to where if I could draw 1 of like 6 cards I would win, but it just didnt work out that way. But I feel like I made a mistake somewhere because honestly, I was so far ahead at one point I'm even confused right now how I lost. Finally, my top 8 match was against another Water deck which was another swift 2-0 (<3 you Will!)
At the end of the day I was extremely happy with my performance, I felt like my losses were either my own fault or out of my hand, and the games I won were very simple to be honest and fair. As I write this there are 5 days till YCS Miami, so I still have a little time to possibly work out any kinks I may have with the deck. So wish me luck! Hopefully I'll finally be able to take my third win.
Until next time duelist, play hard or go home.