The classic Pot of Greed family of spell cards includes some of the best draw and excavate effects in the game — and some of the worst.
This week we're taking a look at every 'Pot of' spell in the game and ranking them based on their greediness... or at least how useful they are in a duel. Some are fantastic, and you're probably already playing cards like Pot of Desires or Pot of Prosperity. Others are a little too generous, including the first cards we'll talk about: Pot of Generosity.
Yu-Gi-Oh's full of terrible cards, but few are as objectively bad as Pot of Generosity. Losing two cards in your hand from Delinquent Duo arguably less devastating than resolving your own Pot of Generosity, and Delinquent Duo rightfully Forbidden.
There's just one use case for Pot of Generosity, and that's returning cards from your hand to the deck that need to be in the deck. You could return a second copy of Destiny HERO - Malicious from your hand to the deck, but is that worth shrinking your hand by three cards? Of course not. Pot of Generosity a perfect example of 'pack filler', in that it's not meant to be played seriously. It's largely a joke, and that's completely fine in a game with thousands of other perfectly playable cards.
Pot of Benevolence is the spell counterpart to The Transmigration Prophecy, a once-Limited competitive trap that could recycle your own cards while manipulating your opponent's graveyard. Transmigration Prophecy no longer competitive today, thanks to a variety of hand traps that largely accomplish the same goal. Pot of Benevolence was always a worse card because it wasn't reactive. You were better off playing Pot of Avarice or Daigusto Emeral to recycle your cards, or D.D. Crow to interrupt plays that involve the graveyard.
We're finally talking about spells that let you draw cards, and first up is Pot of Dichotomy. On the surface, Pot of Dichotomy has a lot of potential as an effect that recycles your monsters and lets you draw two cards, with conditions that are sometimes easier to meet than Pot of Avarice. But Pot of Dichotomy never saw play, thanks to its overbearing restrictions. It's one thing to give up your Battle Phase, but limiting your activation window to the start of your Main Phase 1 is a dealbreaker.
When you're playing second, you'll almost always need to wait until the fourth turn of the duel to resolve Pot of Dichotomy, and that's just too long to wait in modern Yu-Gi-Oh. With Pot of Avarice back off the F&L List, the novelty of Pot of Dichotomy is completely gone.
In today's game there's almost no reason to play Pendulums if you aren't converting your field presence into Extra Deck monsters, especially Links. Pot of Riches doesn't just restrict your Extra Deck access, it also keeps you from any Special Summons that aren't Pendulum Summons.
Master Rule 4 gave players a lot more incentive to play Pot of Riches since you weren't summoning from the Extra Deck as often, but even then, you'd rather keep the ability to summon Link Monsters instead. There might be a home for Pot of Riches in another restrictive Pendulum theme, like Qliphorts, but none of them are terribly competitive at the moment. Even in Qliphorts you'd need to avoid resolving Qliphort Disk on the same turn.
There was a lot of hype leading up to Pot of Acquisitiveness, but it ultimately didn't see much play. It's a fairly well-designed card with no glaring drawbacks or limitations, and it's the only Quick-Play Spell in the family. It replaces itself, recycles your banished cards, and interacts with your opponent's. Those are all the hallmarks of a strong tech option for decks that want to return their banished cards to the deck, and it emerged at a time when Ghost Reaper & Winter Cherries was a real threat against Extra Deck-heavy strategies.
In the end, Pot of Acquisitiveness just wasn't busted enough to score slots in most players' decks.
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Once the premiere 'draw' spell in Yu-Gi-Oh, Pot of Duality been overshadowed by more recent releases like Pot of Extravagance and Pot of Prosperity. Giving up your Special Summons for the turn is a big ask, so you'll almost aways prefer the tradeoffs of Pot of Extravagance and Pot of Prosperity. Pot of Prosperity even lets you see more cards than Pot of Duality, so the choice is clear as long as you can afford to banish cards from your Extra Deck.
Pot of Duality can sometimes be a workable substitute if you're on a budget, or you can use it as another consistency card after maxing out on Pot of Prosperity or Pot of Extravagance, since Pot of Duality doesn't technically 'draw' cards. Otherwise, it's hard to suggest Pot of Duality in a world where Pot of Desires exists.
Pot of Avarice
Pot of Avarice is definitely not as competitive as the other cards in its family, but it offers a massive amount of monster recycling that otherwise doesn't exist outside of Daigusto Emeral.
The problem is that it's largely a 'win-more' card. You're not using it to play through interruption, extend your combos, or solve your opponent's board. You're only resolving Pot of Avarice following successful combos — or maybe if you get hit by Nibiru, the Primal Being. As a result, it's often just unnecessary, and there are almost no cases where it's worth running Pot of Avarice over another draw spell.
There are lots of similarities between Pot of Extravagance and Pot of Prosperity, and you can't go wrong with either if you absolutely don't care about your Extra Deck. That said, if you do care about your Extra Deck cards — especially if you're playing 1-ofs that are necessary for your build — Pot of Extravagance simply won't be an option.
Luckily, Pot of Prosperity happens to be a better spell for finding specific cards anyways, so you're not missing much if you decide to drop Pot of Extravagance for Pot of Prosperity. Pot of Extravagance is an amazing draw spell if you pretend that Prosperity doesn't exist, which is why I've placed it so high on this list. Unfortunately I think it's been completely power crept by Pot of Prosperity.
Pot of Desires
The biggest strength of Pot of Desires is its flexibility. Decks that play critical 1-ofs are the only strategies that can't afford to play Pot of Desires. Every other deck can slot it in as a generic draw spell that nets a quick +1, thins the deck, and doesn't have any wild restrictions.
We've seen a massive resurgence in the popularity of Pot of Desires of the last year, and for good reason. It's a fantastic way to get a head start against the huge volume of hand traps being played competitively. It's consistently one of the best-selling cards in the game, and it even benefits some cards and themes that want to take advantage of face-down banished cards.
Arguably the best 'Pot of' spell in the game, Pot of Prosperity an interesting balance between Pot of Duality and Pot of Extravagance. Its cost is objectively better than Pot of Extravagance by letting you choose the Extra Deck monsters you'll be banishing, and it's an upgrade from Pot of Duality by excavating twice as many cards. I excluded it from my list of the best draw spells of all time back in May, but that's only because it technically excavates cards instead.
Without that restriction I think it's clear that Pot of Prosperity is the best draw or excavate spell in the game — at least wherever it can be reasonably played. It's not nearly as versatile as Pot of Desires, but the ability to choose one card out of six is often a better choice than drawing two more. Pot of Desires is a better pick in terms of card economy, while Pot of Prosperity offers better value by giving you the card you actually need.
The best 'Pot of' card in the game is, of course, the original Pot of Greed from Legend of Blue Eyes White Dragon. It's held up against nearly every competing release for almost two decades, with only Graceful Charity challenging its position as the game's best draw card.
That said, I think Pot of Prosperity comes shockingly close to actually dethroning Pot of Greed. I'm not saying that Pot of Greed wouldn't be an instant staple if it ever returned, but if 'Pot of' cards keep on improving, you might start seeing arguments that these cards are better than the original. If drawing a specific card among the top six of your deck is better than two random cards — as we discussed with Pot of Prosperity versus Pot of Desires — then isn't that also true with Pot of Greed and Pot of Prosperity?
The Pot of Greed family might dethrone the original one day, but there's no card on this list that would become an instant staple as quickly as Pot of Greed itself. Interestingly, you can pair Pot of Greed with Pot of Extravagance and Pot of Desires, but not with Pot of Prosperity.
Maybe Konami's setting up for a limited-time return of Pot of Greed in a future format, like with Snatch Steal, to temporarily push Pot of Prosperity out of its current top position among the game's draw spells.
...Okay, that probably won't happen, but it's fun to imagine Pot of Greed returning with the obligatory questions of "But what does it do?" each time it's activated, right?
Until next time then.