Why Standard Dragons are Better than Dragunity Dragons

My good friend and teammate, Patrick Hoban, recently wrote an article entitled Why Dragunity is Better Than Dragons (Standard). In it, he makes several good points arguing for the Dragunity Dragon deck over the standard build which features cards like Tidal, Debris Dragon, Maxx “C,” and Card Trooper. Now while I do think that Dragunity Dragons are a solid deck and obviously one of the best, I do not agree that it is better than the standard build, and here is why.

Why Maxx “C” is Just the Realest

Right off the bat, Pat talks about Maxx “C” maxx cbeing subpar against Dragunity Dragons, which I think is false. He writes, “Maxx “C” is only relevant when you can be Crimson Bladered after it was used so if you Maxx Redox or Blaster in either deck, it will have no effect.” Now let’s be real, if I have a Colossal Fighter, Ancient Fairy Dragon, Stardust Dragon, Scrap Dragon, or pretty much any big monster that will stick to the field, and I have a Maxx “C” to go with it, I’d say I’m in a pretty good position. In order to make a play, you have to go through it. Stopping is not always an option. We’d like to say, “oh, I’ll just leave out my Dux and Phalanx and set some backrows,” but clearly duels do not play out that perfectly in reality. Your other option is to make HTS Psyhemuth and give me the +1, and that is basically a waste of a Dux. After more playtesting, I’ve found that that level 6 synchro is extremely underwhelming and not that hard to deal with.

Another key part of Maxx “C” is the ability to give you an autowin. Pat talks about how Dragunity Dragons have a wombo-combo that is basically game when you get it off, but there are many things that need to be taken into consideration. For one, you have to have that combo, which the deck does get to pretty consistently I would say, but you also have to go completely unopposed while doing it before you can claim your autowin. Literally, ANYTHING can stop it. There’s Maxx “C,” Phoenix Wing Wind Blast, Raigeki Break, Torrential Tribute, Solemn Warning, Bottomless Trap Hole, Compulsory Evacuation Device, Book of Moon, and the list goes on. This means that the ideal time to do it is obviously turn one, but going first is already advantageous enough, and not to mention that with the Trigon combo, Standard Dragons now have their own wombo-combo on the first turn if unopposed. Now don’t get me wrong, I am not saying that the Double Dracossack combo is as easy to string together on your first turn as the Dragunity combo, but it is an autowin, too, and something that does happen realistically.

Pat also mentions that he plays Upstart Goblinupstart to see more cards, and I agree, I love the idea of that, but let’s not forget that Maxx “C” allows Standard Dragons to see more cards and advance the gamestate, too. It is an earth monster, so at the very least, it will have its merits with Redox. If you are already in winning position, or if you are fighting to get into the winning position, Maxx “C” is definitely the card that propels you to that goal more than anything else. It basically skips your opponent’s advance and makes play come back to you.

Maxx “C” also affects Dragunity Dragons in a harsher way than it does the Standard build because in order to make a level 8 synchro, you need to go through a total of four special summons just to get there. The Standard build can simply summon Redox in defense, wait for a response, and then summon the one-star tuner. Now think about that for a second: your opponent would have to Maxx “C” your Redox in order to attempt getting a +1, but at that point, you could just stop since Redox is the safest dragon to summon (and I do recommend stopping unless you have some good backrows or a Maxx “C” of your own).

Lastly on the Maxx “C” topic, I know I am not the only person in the world who gets free wins because his or her opponent decided to go in on a Maxx “C” and you survive the turn. In fact, it happens all the time against average (or worse) players. Even some good players will randomly give you too many cards, thinking that they can kill you, and then crashing right into a Swift Scarecrow for game. I like my Maxx “C” autowins. I think I’ll keep them.

Combo Deck v. Non-Combo Deck

Pat argues that because Dragunity Dragons consistently do the same thing every game, it is therefore a better deck overall. Now while I do agree that consistency is certainly important, we should not overvalue the term in this case because it isn’t like Standard Dragons have consistency issues, either. Both of the decks are consistent, period. What he doesn’t mention about the Dragunity deck is that the same thing that makes it so consistent can also be a weakness.

You’re right, PatPatrick Hoban, there are no surprises when playing against the Dragunity Dragon deck. You know exactly what is going to happen. This also means that I know exactly how to counter your next turn if played correctly. And let us not forget that ANY disruption will stop their turn. If you stop the Dux play, the deck has to resort to something simple like summon Blaster, attack, pass. The deck is really all about getting off those three Dux summons and then winning the game. It doesn’t need all three of them to make contact, but I would say that at least two of them need to go through.

Also, since the Dragunity deck is such a combo deck, it has major weaknesses to field spell disruption, which Standard Dragons happen to have made a mainstay of their theme. With the help of Trigon, Card Trooper, and Debris Dragon, you can go into Ancient Fairy Dragon and pretty much cripple the Dragunity player’s options. If they don’t have a Dux in their hand already, the next turn will be incredibly lackluster without Ravine. The deck relies on Ravine so much more than Standard and it doesn’t quite have the Elemental Dragons to fall back on as much because it only plays three different colors. This will sometimes result in them having to remove the same color that they’re summoning, which takes away a lot of the value of the theme.

If the Normal Summons are Broken, Let Them Flow

Pat mentions that his deck plays 15 monsters and that Standard Dragons play about 23 on average, which is true, but 3 of them are Maxx “C” and 1 of them is usually Swift Scarerow. I consider those hand traps to be more like traps than monsters, until they are used, in which case they can get more value from Redox. Them being monsters is an added bonus. I don’t even like to count them as “monsters” when I’m building my decks because they are so rarely seen that way when drawn.

The Dragunity build plays Terraformings and Upstart Goblins to dig for Ravine, while the Standard build plays Card Trooper which runs through the deck so quickly, and let’s you get set up when you don’t have access to your own field spell. Also, now that traps are a big thing again, Card Trooper is absolutely broken. We cannot discredit his ability to mill three, which literally lets you see three more cards than you would have without him, but it also has the possibility of doing damage and drawing you a card. I think Maxx “C” and Card Trooper are GREAT cards right now, and foregoing them seems a little silly to me.

card trooperCard Trooper is also a normal summon that can beat over Dux just in case the Dragunity player has only one backrow to stop an incoming Elemental Dragon from destroying it. It puts pressure on that normally wouldn’t be there. Once again, we cannot discredit these normal summons just because they are normal summons. Not to mention that if you do draw cloggy, Redox has the realest effect of them all (I mean, Monster Reborn is banned afterall), so don’t be afraid to quickly pitch a Card Trooper for his effect and combo it with Debris Dragon for a nutty play. It’s not like the Dragunity deck has a Maxx “C” to stop you or anything. And can I just say that Debris Dragon is the best normal summon in the game right now because of how imperative it is to keep a field spell, or not have ALL OF YOUR CARDS DESTROYED BY JUST ONE…EVER!!! Debris puts it in vs. random decks, and it has the best merits against decks that run field spells. It brings back Trooper to mill three again, right before becoming a part of some vicious Dracossack combo.

No Ancient Fairy Dragon? I’ll pass.

Ancient Fairy Dragon is probably the best card in the extra deck at the moment, and can you guess what deck doesn’t make it? Yes, that’s right, Dragunity Dragons doesn’t make it. It is a Redox that does not bounce and has two additional effects that are both relevant. Your opponent cannot simply leave it out there because it will make short work of his field spells, and it will block any chance he has of killing you. Couple Ancient Fairy Dragon with any trap or hand trap, and you have yourself the greatest of walls. If I didn’t say so already, that random 1000 lifepoints that you gain for resolving its effect is actually relevant. It will be what keeps you alive in many games. Remember, Dragons can normally and consistently put up 2800+2800+2400, which is exactly 8000. Take not of how many times you live off of that 1000lp you gained earlier on. You will be shocked.

What Dragunity Dragons Would be Better (sort of)

Dragunity Dragon’s absolute best pro for running the deck—in my opinion—is the early game acceleration. With all those draw cards and the chance to just outright win the game if your wombo-combo goes unopposed, the early game becomes so frightening for every other deck. If you ever open with double Reckless Greed, or any combination of Sacred Sword of Seven Stars and Cards of Consonance, you are on your way to draw A LOT more cards real soon. It definitely starts the game more aggressive and way faster than Standard Dragons. I do think that it can burn out easier, and is more susceptible to disruption, but speed can go a long way if you maximize efficiency.

Also, the deck is almost impervious to Imperial Iron Wall, as Pat stated, which is the number one hate card that all decks side for Dragons. On the other hand, though, Dragunity Dragons do not get the best value out of Skill Drain as Standard Dragons would. You see, Tidal being 2600 is actually relevant when Skill Drain is involved. That’s solely because Ophion and Pleiades are both less than that, and Blaster isn’t always accessible (you might be using him that turn to pop something instead, or you just haven’t drawn him yet). Also, Skill Drain doesn’t conflict with your theme’s normal summons in Standard as it would with Dux. Even Debris Dragon can be used to make Star Eater if it comes to that. Dux under Skill Drain is just…Dux.

Lastly, Dragunity sees Return from the Different Dimension and Sixth Sense more than Standard Dragons, but it doesn’t get nearly as much value added as Standard. That’s because Standard can endure milling cards way more. This is due to the higher monster count. When playing cards that mill, like Card Trooper, you don’t want to be playing too many spells and traps since they (typically) don’t do anything when sent to the graveyard by that method. Regardless of that, Dragunity does get to see and resolve them more often, which is a great strongpoint for the deck.

There are more arguments to be made on both sides, I’m sure, but for now I will leave it at this. Tell me what you think. I want to hear which deck you think is better out of the two and why. Feel free to point out anything that Patrick or I might have missed, or even things that we touched on.

Thanks for reading! Remember, Play Hard or Go Home!

-Frazier Smith

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Frazier Smith

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