Nekroz dominated the Top 32 at YCS Tacoma and took twenty-two seats in the top cut. The new Ritual strategy's extremely consistent and has great match-ups against the best decks in the game, so it's no surprise to see that the theme's key cards have become some of the most coveted. Zhe Sun finished 7-2-1 after the Swiss Rounds at Tacoma with his Mathematician-based build. He played all the usual Nekroz pieces, but elected to Main Deck Shared Ride for the mirror match. That gave him a better game one match-up against arguably the most popular deck at the tournament, but it pushed his Main Deck up to 45 cards. For Nekroz a larger card count isn't a problem: the deck's obscene number of search effects ensure consistency.


There are a couple of cool tech picks that make Sun's deck stand out from the competition, including Glow-Up Bulb, Shaddoll Dragon, and Tackle Crusader. By sending Glow-Up Bulb to the graveyard with Mathematician, Sun could Synchro Summon Herald of the Arc Light on turn one. Herald's effect would keep his opponent from sending monsters to their graveyard, and in the meantime he could also use it to stop an effect. It's a solid opening play that nets a search for a Ritual Monster or Spell Card when Herald is sent to the graveyard.

With three copies of Mathematician, Sun had plenty of opportunities to send Shaddoll Dragon to destroy Vanity's Emptiness or another floodgate. He could also send Tackle Crusader to flip Vanity's Fiend or a monster Ritual Summoned with Djinn Releaser of Rituals face-down. Nekroz builds are still in their infancy in the TCG, but we're already seeing the deck establishing its dominion over the format.

-Kelly Locke