Do you remember back when Lonefire Blossom, Glow-Up Bulb, and Spore foundtheir way into nearly every deck in competitive Yu-Gi-Oh!? Thetrend was even more pervasive than Elemental Hero Stratos's hype, so muchso that Spore – yes, Spore, seriously – was affected by theForbidden and Limited List.

Why, when the effect is once per duel? No one knows, but I do know I'vedated myself here just by discussing this.

The 2019 version of that compact suite of cards has a nice ring to it.Orcust Cymbal Skeleton, Orcust Harp Horror, and Orcust Knightmare work insimilar ways to the Plant engine of old, either Special Summoning otherOrcusts straight from your deck or reviving them from the Graveyard. I'lladmit that Spore's infinitely cuter than Orcust Knightmare, but one ofthose two themes is more consistent. I'll give you a hint; it's not thecute one.

Congrats to Esala Wathuthantrige and his top cut finish at the UDSInvitational in Las Vegas! The city may be alive all night, butWathuthantrige's strategy showed the power of the undead. Check out thelist below, showing just how scary Zombie World can be. And while you do,did you ever stop to notice that Zombie World lets Summon Sorceress bringout a Zombie from your deck regardless what you have on your field?

Pretty cool stuff.

DECKID=109630There's a lot you can do with the Orcust monsters because they keep nettingyou more and more field presence over time, really easily. Just start withany two monsters, Link Summon into a Knightmare like Knightmare Cerberus,then Link Summon again into Knightmare Mermaid, which discards a card tobring Orcust Knightmare into play.

From there you'll Link Summon into Galatea, the Orcust Automation andbanish Orcust Knightmare to send Orcust Harp Horror to the graveyard, whichgets banished in turn to field Orcust Cymbal Skeleton. You'll link thatwith Galatea for Summon Sorceress. After banishing Cymbal Skeleton torevive Galatea you can then use Summon Sorceress' effect and go intoBorrelsword Dragon. And oops, you won.

That play mandates five spots in your Main Deck and four more in the ExtraDeck, but when that's just the backup plan to your main strategy, you cansee how deadly the deck can be overall. The Zombies here give the decknuance and power, but when almost any play you can make stumbles intoBorrelsword Dragon, what can go wrong?

Obviously having World Legacy - "World Wand" and a few bits and pieces inother places can change the order of operations or even alter the board youend on, but when you can suddenly make Borrelsword Dragon after a mundaneplay like Knightmare Phoenix, the deck's pretty scary; Wathuthantrige saidit best. "Any two monsters is the Orcust combo, so that's why I maxed outon all the [good] Dangers!"

Orcusts restrict you to just Dark monsters, but that's negligible given thepower laying in wait in the Extra Deck. Unlike cards such as GagagaEmergency Network – which has an astounding five caveats to its text –Orcusts are a breath of fresh air.

#####CARDID= 23721#####

Besides, look at everything else in this deck. Starter cards likeArmageddon Knight, hand refreshers like Saryuja Skull Dread… even the armyof cute and scary Danger monsters are all Dark. Time Thief Redoer andVampire Sucker – necessary components for other plays – are Dark monsters."Outside of Mare-Mare… that's it, really," Wathuthantrige explained,pointing out just how little the Dark restriction hurts the build.

If you can't tell, I'm still upset about Gagaga Emergency Network fiveyears later. Some may say "Get over it," but to that, I say "No."

Zombies With Musical Instruments Are Called Tunebies
Alright so about those Zombies, the untrained eye may say "Hey, where'sPSY-Framelord Omega?" Despite PSY-Framelord Omega's insane power level,it's not the target monster for the zombie horde. Instead, take a closerlook at Doomking Balerdroch, no one's favorite cuddle partner. For the lowcost of FREE, Doomking Balerdroch revives itself from the graveyard andgains the power to counter any monster effect.

There's a small caveat to that, but it's baked into the other components ofthe deck. Necroworld Banshee, coincidentally sharing the name with the ladyfrom accounting on the first floor of my building, is instant access toZombie World. Fielding Doomking Balerdroch combined with Zombie World givesyou access to the free summon and the negation or banish effect, butconsidering just how easy it is to send Doomking Balerdroch to thegraveyard and activate the Field Spell, I feel like the hyperbolic "free"status I ascribe to it is warranted.

Seriously - between Uni-Zombie and Gozuki, Foolish Burial or heck, justdiscarding cards from Card Destruction or Danger effects, getting bothDoomking Balerdroch and Necroworld Banshee into the graveyard is arguablyharder to avoid than to actually do.

#####CARDID= 24479 #####

"These are your main Normal Summons," Wathuthantrige said, looking at therest of the deck, laughing at the notion you don't need a bunch of otherNormal Summons. "It's ok if you draw multiples since they [lead to] halfyour win condition." Go ahead and pretend and play a few games withWathuthantrige's deck - you'll have to go out of your way not toyard the Zombies.

It's like Amorphage Goliath in last week'sdeck: the natural progression of the strategy all but forces you to set up foryour plays, even if you don't execute them. Sure, Uni-Zombie and friendsalso aid in Link Summons or a quick Yazi, Evil of the Yang Zing play. Butif you don't OTK with Borrelsword Dragon or lock your opponent out of thegame with Outer Entity Azathot, the backup plan is just negating whatevermonsters come your way.

It's a pretty good backup plan.

If you take a step back, the whole deck looks like a backup plan,which is another way of saying it's a toolbox strategy. Like WarriorToolbox from the mid 2000s, where Reinforcement of the Army grabbedwhichever Warrior you needed, Wathuthantrige's strategy has easy access toa wide range of options with minimal investment.

Consider The Phantom Knights of Rusty Bardiche. The typical play sees youSummoning it so you can segue into Outer Entity Azathot, but depending onthe shape of your opponent's board, you can use it to help build to deallethal damage just as easily. By yarding The Phantom Knights of AncientCloak to search The Phantom Knights of Shade Brigandine, you can field twomore monsters for free and just kill your opponent outright.

I know that's not glamorous, but duelists often overlook the simplestanswer to a problem. Why bother trying to set up an unbreakable board whenchurning out big monsters is just as easy a solution?

Just remember: beat your opponents before they beat you.

-Loukas Peterson


Loukas Peterson lives in Nashville, Tennessee, hoping one day to run in5th Congressional District on the platform of "Marshmallows forEveryone." When he's not submitting ideas for Fabled support and aFabled Link monster, you can find him building a bonfire in hisbackyard to attract the local wildlife for an audience with hisukulele. Hailed as the only person capable of cooking Minute Rice in 56seconds, Loukas is always looking at expanding his backyard to houseevery dog in the world without a home. Well, and those with homesalready.


Do you love winning with unconventional strategies? Do you lovecreating mash-ups? Does your deck need an injection of crazy? Send thefollowing torerouting.tcgplayer@gmail.comto have your deck featured in the "Re-Routing" deck fix column!

-Your Main and Extra Deck list. (No Side Deck needed, but please send awritten deck list, not a screencap; screencapped deck lists will befiled and then burned in the furnace accordingly… and your deck shouldbe TCG legal).

-Your name and city.

-Remember, please use full card names! Abbrevs and mis-sipllngs makeLoukas' life sad. Try your darndest to get the TCG name on there.

-A paragraph or two describing your deck: what it does, why you'replaying it, and its strengths and weaknesses. "Winning" is not astrategy per se, and neither is "beating your opponents before theybeat you."

-Your favorite card from the build and why – make me fall in love withthe deck! The cooler your strategy the more I'll want to fix it, and ifyou throw in funny jokes, that'll surely get my attention too; bewarned, unfunny jokes will push your deck to the back of the stack.Don't be afraid to get creative! New stuff takes priority, because I'mnot bored of it yet! –LJP