What should you play in your YGO States?

Hey everyone! Back again this week with an article talking about what you might expect at your upcoming state championship! The beauty of this event is that so far we have not had a premier event to showcase the new cards that came out in Secrets of Eternity. Even further more than that, the HERO structure deck will be legal leaving the splashable engine of mask change second and an array of fusion monsters live. What I love about all this is it will leave plenty of room for people to make the case that the way they play the deck is the best way. In the YGO States you aren’t going to find people playing Patrick Hoban’s exact Burning Abyss build or Jeff Jones’ exact Shaddol build, and that’s because they haven’t made their list with the new things public.

This is in no way discrediting them, because the way they play their respected decks is the best way, but without people to Net Deck, you are going to run into a variety of different ways each deck is played. We even saw a new archetypes hit the scene since the last circuit with Infernoids now being playable. So the question is this, what deck will you be playing for the state championship? This is a question I have asked myself almost every day this week. In order to make an effective choice one should analyze all the possibilities (just like any other event) and the best way to start that now is to look at the support each of the “Big Three” received in Secrets of Eternity. Burning Abyss was easily the deck that got the most valuable support out of the new set with cards like “The Good and Evil & of The Burning Abyss” and the three new Malebranche’s. The power of these cards gives the deck everything that it didn’t have before. For starters, Good & Evil gives the deck the ability to search out Fire Lake of the Burning Abyss, which makes accessing the best trap card in the game right now even easier.


“Libic, Malebranche of the Burning Abyss”

If you control a monster that is not a "Burning Abyss" monster, destroy this card.

You can only use 1 of the following effects of "Libic, Malebranche of the Burning Abyss" per turn, and only once that turn.

  • If you control no Spell/Trap Cards: You can Special Summon this card from your hand.
  • If this card is sent to the Graveyard: You can Special Summon 1 Level 3 DARK Fiend-Type monster from your hand, but its effects are negated.

This card is actually just nuts. With the combination of the Graff and Cir already loading up your field with monsters, this card makes them even better. This card can be used in a variety of different ways. Let’s say you go first and summon a Tour Guide and attempt to activate its effect and your opponent responds with a well-timed Effect Veiler. Before the new set, you would have to clear your Tour Guide before you would be able to summon your abyss monsters, meaning that lone Tour Guide being on your field can put a stop to your play entirely for that turn. Fortunately now, if you have a card like Foolish Burial in your hand, you can dump Libic to your grave using its effect to summon an abyss monster from your hand. Since its effects are negated, you’d be free to continue your play of making Dante and setting up a board. On top of using this card as a back-up play, it theoretically also gives you a chance to use a burning abyss monster more than once. Let’s just say that you normal summon Graff and special Cir, XYZ into a Dante and activate its effect to mill 3 (one being Libic) and detach Graff. You would get graff’s effect, and Libic. If you were unfortunate enough to open double Cir, this gives you the opportunity to summon him from your hand in order to make a double dante play with whatever you summon off of Graff. Sometimes this wouldn’t always the most optimal play, but it does have the ability to increase the value of your monsters.


“Farfa, Malebranch of the Burning Abyss”

If you control a monster that is not a "Burning Abyss" monster, destroy this card. You can only use 1 of the following effects of "Farfa, Malebranche of the Burning Abyss" per turn, and only once that turn.

  • If you control no Spell/Trap Cards: You can Special Summon this card from your hand.
  • If this card is sent to the Graveyard: You can target 1 monster on the field; banish it until the End Phase.

In my opinion, out of the three Malebranch’s we got, this one is the worst. However, that isn’t saying much because this card still provides a lot for the deck. The great thing about this card is that it is both an offensive and defensive card. This card gives Burning Abyss the ability to play over tough situations that it had a harder time with before. El Shaddol Winda can be very problematic for this deck at times, but no longer. With this card all you have to do is get this in the grave and then you’re free to make a board. Farfa also gives the deck an even easier way to otk. If you’re looking at an opponent’s Black Luster Soldier – Envoy of the Beginning wondering how you can clear it, all you have to do is use Farfa to banish it and then OTK your opponent.


“Cagna, Malebranch of the Burning Abyss”

If you control a monster that is not a "Burning Abyss" monster, destroy this card. You can only use 1 of the following effects of "Cagna, Malebranche of the Burning Abyss" per turn, and only once that turn.

  • If you control no Spell/Trap Cards: You can Special Summon this card from your hand.
  • If this card is sent to the Graveyard: You can send 1 "Burning Abyss" Spell/Trap Card from your Deck to the Graveyard.

On top of having the coolest art out of any of the Burning Abyss cards so far, this is probably my favorite of the new support cards for the deck. This card gives the deck the ability to not only thin the deck out, but makes Good & Evil have much more value. This card’s dumping ability means that you are FAR less likely to draw into your ritual spell (which if you’re anything like me would be a very bad thing seeing as to the fact that I do not play the ritual monster). On top of putting Good & Evil in the grave, it also makes Fire Lake even easier to get into play. The consistency of these cards makes sure that Burning Abyss is, and will continue to be, the best deck in the format.


Qliphort Monolith”

Pendulum Effect: You cannot Special Summon monsters, except "Qli" monsters. This effect cannot be negated. During the End Phase, if you Tribute Summoned this turn: You can draw a number of cards equal to the number of "Qli" monsters you Tributed for Tribute Summons this turn.

This card gives the deck a great way to continue to plus off of big plays. It also gives the deck the ability to never had summoner’s art be a dead card.


"Qliphort Stealth"

“You can Normal Summon this card without Tributing. If this card is Normal Summoned without Tributing, or is Special Summoned, its Level becomes 4 and its original ATK becomes 1800. If this card is Normal Summoned/Set, it is unaffected by activated effects from any monster whose original Level/Rank is lower than this card's current Level. When this card is Tribute Summoned by Tributing a "Qli" monster(s): You can target 1 card on the field; return it to the hand. Your opponent cannot activate cards or effects in response to this effect's activation.”

This card is just another good monster the deck can play. It has the generic unaffected effect but it also serves as another bounce card. Really though the best thing about this card is the fact that your opponent can’t respond to the effect.

Shaddols really received the short end of the stick in SECE only receiving one card that is remotely playable.


“Nephe Shaddol Fusion”

Activate this card by declaring 1 Attribute. Equip only to a "Shaddoll" monster, and it becomes that Attribute. During your Main Phase: You can Fusion Summon 1 "Shaddoll" Fusion Monster from your Extra Deck, using monsters from your hand or your side of the field as Fusion Materials, including the equipped monster. You can only use this effect of "Nephe Shaddoll Fusion" once per turn.

While this does give shaddols another fusion spell, it’s also an equip spell meaning that it is vulnerable to being Mystical Space Typhoon’d. I believe that this neglect toward the deck may be serving to prove the point Patrick Hoban made in his “Block Format” article.

While I am somewhat ignorant in the way that qliphort and shaddols are played, its evident to me that even though all decks received new cards that burning abyss is easily the most optimal deck to play if you are choosing to win. The way these cards are may tilt the “triangle” even further in the direction of BA. As for infernoids, I feel like the deck in its current state is subpar. It blows through recources really fast and if its push is interrupted then they pretty much lose. We may see the deck excel with more cards, but until then I don’t really see them being a threat.

I hope I helped shed some light on what you should play for your YGO states, so until next time Play Hard or Go Home!

Dan Barnes

Dan Barnes

Hey Guys! I'm 17 and go to Vinton County highschool in Ohio. I aspire to do great things in this game and am here to help you all grow along with me!
Dan Barnes
Dan Barnes

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