Steps of Evolution: Wind-ups – Part 2

I touched base on some of last format’s windup decks that have won multiple larger tournaments last format and talked about various tech options. I am now going to touch base on the deck that won nationals, and multiple wind-up decks this format.

Windups have had several major changes since the format has changed, so before I discuss that, lets talk about Tyler Tabman’s windup deck that won US nationals in 2012.  

Total: 42

Monsters: 21

3 – Wind-Up Rabbit

3 – Wind-Up Rat

3 – Wind-Up Shark

3 – Tour Guide from the Underworld

3 – Effect Veiler

2 – Wind-Up Magician

1 – Wind-Up Hunter

1 – Spirit Reaper

1 – Gorz the Emissary of Darkness


Spells: 13

3 – Mystical Space Typhoon

2 – Wind-Up Factory

2 – Instant Fusion

1 – Heavy Storm

1 – Book of Moon

1 – Dark Hole

1 – Pot of Avarice

1 – Mind Control

1 – Monster Reborn


Traps: 8

2 – Solemn Warning

2 – Torrential Tribute

2 – Bottomless Trap Hole

1 – Solemn Judgment

1 – Mirror Force


Extra: 15

3 – Wind-Up Carrier Zenmaity

1 – Wind-Up Zenmaines

1 – Number 20: Giga Brilliant

1 – Leviair the Sea Dragon

1 – Number 17: Leviathan Dragon

1 – Temtempo the Percussion Djinn

1 – Number 39: Utopia

1 – Acid Golem

1 – Steelswarm Roach

1 – Tiras, Keeper of Genesis

1 – Adreus, Keeper of Armageddon

1 – Cyber Saurus

1 – Dragoness the Wicked Knight


Side: 15

3 – Dimensional Fissure

3 – Shadow Imprisoning Mirror

2 – Maxx C

2 – Snowman Eater

2 – Dimensional Prison

1 – Kycoo The Ghost Destroyer

1 – Soul Taker

1 – Dust Tornado


A big change to what is expected these days is that veiler is being mained at 3. Veiler was his #1 answer to inzektors which at the time was a huge deck, unlike the beginning of this format. The biggest difference in his deck to what is expected today is the two instant fusion. This was a card that I did not remember until going back to review his list. At the time right before Nationals I was testing two instant fusion because of seeing its success at regionals, and was testing it at a local level and saw how good it was for the deck if you had already lured out maxx “c”. After a lot of success at locals I had made the decision that using instant fusion was the next big step for the deck to take, it gave extra versatility, speed, and power with a low cost. The biggest down fall to this card is the space it takes from your extra deck. I could see this card being played in today’s decks but I would not recommend it as much because of the amount of exceeds that are currently out fills up the extra enough as is. If you could work past that then I would recommend this card.

Joshua Graham first place YCS Toronto 

Total: 42

Monsters : 20

3 Wind-Up Shark

3 Wind-Up Rat

3 Wind-Up Rabbit

2 Wind-Up Magicien

2 Snowman Eater

2 Thunder King Rai-Oh

2 Maxx "C"

2 Tour Guide From the Underworld

1 Sangan


Spells : 11

2 Pot of Duality

2 Mystical Space Typhoon

1 Pot of Avarice

3 Wind-Up Factory

1 Dark Hole

1 Heavy Storm

1 Monster Reborn


Traps : 11

2 Mirror Force

2 Dimensional Prison

2 Bottomless Trap Hole

2 Torrential Tribute

2 Solemn Warning

1 Solemn Judgment


Side deck : 15

1 Maxx "C"

1 Wind-Up Hunter

1 Snowman Eater

2 Dimensional Fissure

1 Mystical Space Typhoon

2 Soul Taker

2 Fiendish Chain

2 Dust Tornado

3 Messenger of Peace


Extra Deck : 15

1 Wind-Up Carrier Zenmaity

2 Wind-Up Zenmaines

1 Wind-Up Zenmaister

1 Wind-Up Arsenal Zenmaioh

1 Adreus, Keeper of Armageddon

1 Tiras, Keeper of Genesis

1 Number 17: Leviathan Draon

1 Leviair the Sea Dragon

1 Number 21 : Giga-Brilliant

1 Number 16 : Shock Master

1 Numero 30 : Acid Golem of Destruction

1 Temtempo the Percussion Djinn

1 Maestroke the Symphony Djinn

1 Photon Papilloperative

This deck is after the September 2012 ban list came out, and zenmaighty got sent down to one to stop what was known as the windup loop. You would notice the lack of a main decked Windup hunter (although he still sided it for some match ups), and main decked dualities. Dualities have since been dropped from most windup players lists, but it is the card that stands out that I will concentrate on. First I would like to say if you are not familiar to the new way windup decks are used you might want to learn about the interactions of windup shark, magician, and learn about the large amount of plays this deck is open to. Anyway, going on with duality, he said his main reason for using this card at Toronto was for consistency in the beginning of a unstable format. I would personally not recommend this card right now. The main reason I would say this is because that decks have formed quiet solidly and consistent versions of the deck have been made (even though his was at the time, and has not changed a ton less) and have been thoroughly tested.

So throughout this we have covered many past cards popular for the deck. There are a few I am going to recommend, along with a couple cards that have been main decked that I may not have covered, or just recently gained popularity in the main deck.

First I am going to talk about Gorz the Emissary of Darkness. 

This card is not popularly used in windup decks right now but I am going to say, because of that, to use it. I have done a decent amount of testing with Gorz recently, and it has been live almost every game. This card has won me enough games to earn its place in my deck.

The only time I will not use gorz is if I decide to main deck Fiendish Chain.

Fiendish chain is another popular card that I do not fully recommend main decked, but I think you should be siding it right now especially because inzektors have recently became a popular deck again. Fiendish chain is versatile enough to keep you alive in bad situations at times, and it will pull you through many games with a win.

One I did not cover in my articles is main decking Messenger of Peace.

This card, for the cost of 100 life points per turn which is almost a joking amount in yugioh, stops all monsters 1500 or above attack from attacking. This card main decked was something that I first noticed being used early November, and I loved the idea of it immediately. It allows you to stall out games long enough to gain the materials you need to win the game, or another target for your opponent to waste a Mystical Space Typhoon on.

Instant Fusion. 

This card as I said will open many options for you, and knowing that above I said I did not recommend it, I still feel this is one card I need to talk about. This card can give you games you should not have won, and it can stop you from losing games you should have lost. The only thing that knocks this card off my deck list is the fact that it eats up space in my extra deck as well.

The last one I would like to talk about is Thunder King Rai-Oh.

Thunder King (I will refer to him as this from now on) is a older card that has been around stopping basic plays for a long time, and constantly being called a staple for main decks or side decks. My current version of windups is using only 1 of him in the main, and siding one more. I cannot imagine not main decking at least one of him because of how useful he can come in a lot of match ups, and within windups you can pull him back multiple times with leviair the sea dragon because of how easy it is to make.


In conclusion do not forget about popular cards within decks because you may sometime be staring at one of these, and because you were not expecting it, you just lost the match.


If you would like to talk to me on any choices please post here, find me on facebook, or check out my new Youtube Team channel AfterlyfeIx.

Don't forget that tomorrow the new Prophecy Destroy tin comes out,  if you haven't already done so be sure to pick one up from ARG.    Till next time "Play Hard or Go Home"

Thomas Balaban

Latest posts by Thomas Balaban (see all)