The Kaiju Side Deck

At ARG Detroit I made top cut of the Circuit Series using a Pendulum deck that devoted nearly half of my side deck spaces to the Kaiju engine. While Gameciel has certainly seen play before, most of the other Kaiju cards haven’t seen much competitive play. Today I want to talk about the engine that helped me finish first after swiss!


Gameciel, the Sea Turtle KaijuLet’s start out by taking a look at which Kaiju cards I sided:


2 Gameciel, the Sea Turtle Kaiju

1 Gadarla, the Mystery Dust Kaiju

1 Kumongous, the Sticky String Kaiju

3 Interrupted Kaiju Slumber


The sheer power of Interrupted Kaiju Slumber is what first attracted me to the engine. It can function as Dark Hole, Emergency Teleport, and Reinforcement of the Army all within a single card. It had been sitting on my list of cards that I knew would eventually be good since it was released, but until recently I hadn’t had many reasons to actually incorporate it into a deck.


Beginning with Dallas, followed by Richmond, then Las Vegas, and headed into Detroit, we were wrapping up four straight weekends of traveling to events. Through a combination of encountering a cab driver who didn’t know where the convention center was and certainly wasn’t in the right line of work, and possibly enjoying the traveling a little too much, I actually missed a round at two of those events, but managed to make top cut at both of the others. We played a Magician deck in Dallas, but switched to a more standard build for the remaining events. We decided there wasn’t time to make the kind of significant improvements that would be needed to give us the kind of advantage needed to win the tournaments with them so close together, so we stuck with trying to only make minor improvements from week to week in hopes of just topping.


One of the areas that we saw that there was a need to improve in was our sided games against Monarchs. We were well-versed in the mirror match and felt pretty good about our chances against Kozmo, but we were concerned with Monarchs. We decided that there was no significant advantage to be had when going second against that deck game 1, but that we could win most games where we went first, and that rather than try to beat them game 1, we would accept the matchup being very die-roll dependent for the first game and commit heavily to winning the sided games.


Raigeki-LCJW-EN-ScR-1EThe question then became what the best way to go about that would be. Domain locking us out of our extra deck was clearly the problem, but there were several different ways we could go about tackling it. In Richmond and Vegas we mained Raigeki and two Dark Holes, but decided that the release of Hope Harbinger made incorporating those cards significantly worse, as they would often not be able to be used for their intended purpose going second in the mirror, so we cut them from the main deck. We could go with siding them, as it would turn off Domain, but there were other options such as actually dealing with Domain itself via MST or Twin Twister. Alternatively, we could use cards like Mask of Restrict to lock them out of Domain, but that wouldn’t do much against an already live Domain if we went second. This was also true of Solemn Warning and Scolding, which we had in our main decks.


The prospect of using Raigeki, Dark Holes, MSTs, Twin Twisters, Mask of Restrict, Solemn Warning, and Solemn Scolding presented a new problem; oversiding. We had too many cards that were trying to accomplish the same thing. If we had all those cards in against Monarchs, yeah we may not lose to Domain, but we’d likely have so many of them in our hands that we wouldn’t be able to do anything other than turn off Domain. Every card that turns off Domain is one less card we have to actually advance our game state with.


We considered cutting the number of cards we had to turn off Domain down, but this created more problems. If we cut too many of them, then we risk not having any at all. If we keep enough to consistently draw one, we risked them having Mega Thestalos and using it to pick it out of our hand. Only having one out also meant needing to win the game that turn (or establish an unbreakable board), or run this risk of them outing our board and them reestablishing their lock without us having another out.


This is where the Kaiju cards came in. All seven cards were an out to Domain since tributing their Monarch for a Kaiju is a special summon, not a tribute summon. Playing seven of them also meant seeing one often enough that we would typically have at least one out, while ensuring against having too many cards that did the same thing.


Thestalos the Mega MonarchKaiju Slumber solved the problem of Mega Thestalos taking away the one out we did have, because them discarding it for his effect wouldn’t matter as we could banish it to add a Kaiju to our hand. Kaiju Slumber also solved the problem of needing to win the game or establish a board they couldn’t break without risking them reestablishing their lock while we don’t have another out, because it allowed us to clear their tribute summon and turn off Domain one turn, and then search a Kaiju to clear another tribute summon the following turn, if they were able to break our board.


We wanted to make sure Kaiju Slumber was always live and we decided four Kaijus would be the minimum number we could play to make that happen. We wanted to diversify which Kaijus we played, because Kaiju Slumber requires being able to summon different names. If we went 2:2 instead of 2:1:1, we might more easily have a dead Slumber.


Having to deal with a 3300 attack Kaiju could be a problem, even in the absence of Domain. We wanted to make sure we could actually deal with the Kaijus we were giving our opponents, so we preferred the weaker Kaijus. We also preferred to play the ones that were level 8, so that we could possibly summon Hope Harbinger with one of them if we drew two Kaijus and would be able to summon one to our side of the field. We included only a single level 7 one to diversify the names and therefore the targets for Kaiju Slumber.


Twin TwisterOverall it was a great engine and Kaiju Slumber packs a ton of power. This engine allowed us to not have to side in Dark Holes, MSTs, and Twin Twisters against Monarchs, and we could make room for it without removing parts of our engine due to oversiding by taking out our counter traps. It’s not that any of these other alternatives were bad against Monarchs, it’s that Kaijus provide a better way to do the same thing in this matchup without having too many cards that do the same thing.


Everyone should try out this engine for themselves and leave what they think about it down in the comments section. My book Road of the King is now officially available through ARG and Amazon and I highly recommend it if you’re looking to improve your game! Until next time, play hard or go home!

Patrick Hoban

Patrick Hoban

Patrick Hoban

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