This past weekend I was able to win the first Kaijudo Championship in Seattle. It was probably the most fun I have ever had on a weekend. On Saturday we were able to meet all of the R&D people who work on Kaijudo and ask them questions and even help design a card! Saturday was so much fun I almost forgot there was going to be a tournament on the next day. I honestly was not focusing on winning, I was just there looking to have a good time which makes the victory even more meaningful to me. I think when you relax and just try to have fun you will be surprised with what may happen. So to start off I will go through the deck I decided to use.
3 Lyra, the Blazing Sun
3 Andromeda of the Citadel
3 Stormspark Blast
3 Keeper of Laws
2 Toxic Fog
3 Terror Pit
3 Bone Blades
1 Dark Return
3 Bottle of Wishes
3 King Coral
3 Crystal Memory
2 King Neptas
3 King Tritonus
3 Squillace Scourge
3 Grip of Despair
3 Aqua Strider
3 Piercing Judgment
1 Wave Lancer
I chose to use Leviathans because I felt like the tournament might be a bit more agro and using cards such as King Coral would give me an advantage against them. I expected to see many Megabug decks, I was sure wrong; I believe there was only 3 in the tournament. I also kept this deck pretty hidden from everyone because I wanted a little bit of a surprise factor going into the tournament, I only tested with my friend Eric and he help me prepare for what I thought was going to be at the Championship.
Toxic Fog – This was a tech I had in specifically for the Megabug match-up. If they play Manapod Beetle turn 2, followed by a Mana-Tick, I could play this card turn 3 and wipe their board. Sadly I did not get the chance to do that in the tournament, but this card did put in work. I banished my opponent’s Nix on turn 3 many times, one time banishing 2 of them. Against Carl M, A.K.A Earthpower I was able to play 2 Toxic Fog and banish 4 creatures from his field.
Fumes – For a while now I have seen this card get less and less play, many people prefer Razorkinder Puppet to him. He was very key in my deck. The fact that I was able to go turn 3 Mesmerize, turn 4 Fumes, and turn 5 Grip of Despair help me shut down my opponent fast. I normally always go 2nd with this deck, unless I am playing against rush. You can also abuse Fumes with King Coral and keep playing it over and over.
Bottle of Wishes – I would like to state I am perfectly fine with this card and I did not have any major upsets in the tournament because of this card on either side of the board. I remember Joe Bass used Bottle in top 8 to get an Infernus the Awakened late game but that happens sometimes. The only reason I used this card was to help counteract the agro match up. Most of the time I just put it in mana. I got it off against the rush deck in round 2 and still lost so in no way do I feel like this card is overpowered.
King Coral – This guy is a big piece of the deck. When he or any Leviathan enters the Battle Zone, you return all level 4 or under creatures back to each players hand. I had no idea that mono-light rush was a deck but I ended up playing 2 of them and this card single handily gave me a huge advantage because they would untap at 4 mana and have like 5 creatures out and I would just bounce them all back. Against CVH in top 4 I used Crystal Memory early to search for this card and just waiting to get to turn 7.
King Neptas – This was just to help me in the mirror match and to create a wall against their Keeper of Laws so that way they could not be aggressive and start just swinging at my shields. It is also a nice low costing Leviathan I can abuse King Coral with.
King Tritonus – Simply one of the best cards ever printed. The fact that I can bounce many creatures from my opponent’s field back to hand and draw 5 cards is just ridiculous.
Squillace Scourge – If this card was not already good enough, it is also a Leviathan. It is a potential board wipe if I combine it with King Coral. I am able to bounce all level 4 or under back and then discard them with his effect. This card won me many games because I was able to stabilize a board with Keeper of Laws, Neptas, and a double breaker, play him, then just go for game and win because I have 2 creatures that cannot be targeted.
Wave Lancer – This is one of my favorite blockers now. I only use one because it is potentially an infinite blocker, since when it is banished it bounces back to your hand. It is also bigger than Herald of Infernus and King Neptas. If you have this and King Coral on board you put your opponent in a mini lock because I can just keep getting this back to my hand and bouncing their little creatures back.
Now I am going to go through each of my rounds and who I played against. I do not have a very good memory but I will try my best to get cover what happened in each round.
Round 1 Vs Tyler Winther (Blurple)
I will start off by saying this was the nicest guy I met all weekend. He had such a great attitude and every time I did a cool move he always said that was a good move. Tyler also had the privilege of winning the Spirit Award at the end of the day and walked away with an Inferus picture, signed by all the Wizards employees, and an iPad Mini. He came all the way from Canada, which was really cool because there were not a lot of Canadians that got their invite. This was probably the 2nd hardest match I played in the tournament. He used a blurple deck that was able to withstand late game. He also used Mesmerize and Razorkinder Puppets to get the big threats out of my hand. I was able to win game 1 pretty easily by abusing King Coral and eventually decking him out. Game 2 however took a long time, just when I think I had it, he would draw a Dracothane of the Abyss and get right back in the game. He also used Bat-Breath Scaradorable which was really good when all I had was Wave Lancer and King Neptas because I could not block or attack it. The game ended up going to time and there was no winner of that game when the last 5 turns were completed. Since I won game 1 and game 2 was a draw, I ended up with the victory since I won more games than he did.
Round 2 Vs Zachary M. (Mono Fire Rush)
I was excited to see that I got a feature match this round! I might be able to show off my new deck. Then I saw him play the Blaze Belcher and my heart sank a little. Game 1 I turn 3 mesmerized a Gilaflame out of his hand and he drew another one the turn after anyway. Both games I was in a position to play Andromeda on the next turn and he was able to get the fast attacker off the top for the win. He was a great guy and ended up making top 8. I was not too upset about this loss because it happens and you just have to keep your head up and move on forward.
Round 3 Vs Paul Clarke (W/D/L Agro)
Paul is a friend of mine and I was happy and sad to play him. Game 1 I set up a Squillace play and left him with 2 shields to my Squillace, Neptas, and Laws. He got a Scaradoable of Gloom Hollow and I just needed to draw any removal to get the victory and I drew a Piercing Judgment to deal with the blocker and swing for game. Game 2 he was able to get Keeper of Laws, and 2 King Neptas on board and started swinging at me and I could not fight back. Game 3 I had double Keeper of Laws and a Lyra and I started attacking him with those, once again we were in the same situation, he had the Scaradorbale of Gloom Hollow but this time I already had another Lyra in my hand and played it and swung in for game.
Round 4 Vs Carl M. A.K.A EarthPower (Mono Light Rush)
He was able to get the progression game 1 but I believe I had Bone Blades, Grip of Despair, and Bottle of Wishes, I used to get a Terror Pit, in my shields. Both games I was able to get to the point where I could play Andromeda and start swinging for game. I do not remember much but it was really nice to finally play him, another really nice guy.
Round 5 Vs Ryan Valentino (WDLN Control)
Game 1 I was able to control is hand and set up my board for a Squillace play and get the victory pretty swiftly. Game 2 he got the turn 4 Crystal Memory, turn 5 Mana Storm, and the turn 6 Shatter, luckily I knew what he was going to do when he played memory and put down a Keeper of Laws so I was not at a total disadvantage. He was also able to play King Tritonus a couple turns later but I bottled into a Squillace to discard his hand. He decided to be aggressive and swing in at my shields and I had a Terror Pit and Grip of Despair in my shields and I was able to take care of his board and drew King Tritonus the following turn and was able to take complete control of the game and win.
Round 6 Vs Damon C. (I think WDFL Dragons)
We were both 4-1 and if we drew we would guarantee both of us a spot in top 8 so we did.
Top 8 Vs Joe Bass (WDFL Dragons)
We knew each other because we both come from Texas. He actually beat me in the top 4 of the first KMC I played in at Comic Asylum so I knew this was going to be a challenge. This was the most difficult match I played all day. I do not remember game 1 very much but I believe I was able to discard his hand and then take control from there and get the win. Game 2 he had no cards in hand and got the Dreadclaw to get back 5 dragons. He ended up having a field of Immolator, 2 lyras and some other creatures. I had 9 shields and I knew what my first 5 shields were from when I used Crystal Memory earlier. He triple broke with Immolator, then double broke with Dreadclaw, I got a Grip of Despair and used it on the Immolator. He broke 3 of my original 5 shields and they were Crystal Memory, Piercing Judgment, and Terror Pit. I was able to stop him from attacking any more that turn and bouncing a creature back. I followed that turn by playing Squillace to discard his whole hand, including Immolator. It was pretty back and forth and I think he eventually used Bottle of Wishes to get an Infernus the Awakened and I drew Fumes and Aqua Strider and he was able to win Game 2. Game 3 I was able to get complete control early on and had an answer for everything he did. I also kept Squillace in my hand for when he drew Dreadclaw. All he had was an Andromeda and I kept bouncing it back to his hand and he ended up playing it like 3 or 4 times. I was able to get him to where he only had 2 cards left in his deck and I had 2 Andromeda’s on board, with 9 shields. I played Squillace to ensure my victory because he had to win on his next turn but he could not attack due to my Squillace’s effect and won the top 8 match.
Top 4 Vs Christian Van Hoose CVH (Mono Light Rush)
I felt pretty confident in the match up, not because it was CVH but because of how well I did against Earthpower in swiss. I was able to play Aqua Strider early and use Piercing Judgment to get rid of 2 creatures from his board. He used Halon to run over my Lyra at some point and that surprised me because I did not see that card in EarthPowers deck earlier. I used Crystal Memory for King Coral and was able to hold out until I had Andromeda and swing in for game. Game 2 I had double Andromeda pretty early on and I was able to stall him out until I could play both of them and swing in for game. It was sad that one of the ARG members had to lose but I was happy we got to play and he is a great duelist.
Top 2 Vs. Robby Stewart (WDFL Dragons)
This is crazy that we met in the finals, at the first 2 KMC’s we played in we went undefeated in swiss and just drawing in the last round to get us both into top 8. Now it seems we did the opposite meeting in the finals. We actually flew to the Championship together and stayed in the same hotel room. I could not be happier of who I had to play in the finals. Before we played we just said it was a 50/50 shot and it did not matter who won we both got to this point together. Game 1 we got to late game and we were both pretty much top decking, it was a race. He was waiting to get to his Dreadclaw and I was waiting for King Tritonus. I won the race by getting to Tritonus. After that I played Andromeda, Keeper of Laws, and King Neptas. I had a Squillace in hand I was about to play and go in but he scooped up his cards before I could because he knew the game was over. Game 2 he got a bird out early and a turn 4 Herald and started attacking my shields, I guess after what happened last game he realized going to late game with me would put him in a really bad spot. With the help of a couple Shield blasts I was able to deal with his board and his hand and by turn 6 he really did not have anything. I was able to take complete control and win from there.
Overall this was a great experience and hopefully I get to do it again at the 2nd Championship in November. I was able to use a deck that not that many people use and win the Championship with it. I just hope this inspires people to keep playing and trying their best.
See you on the other side of the veil!