In a set crowded with huge Ghost Rares like Dark Magician (Ghost Rare) and Blue-Eyes Alternative White Dragon (Ghost Rare); new cards like Dragunity Remus and Nehshaddoll Genius; and reprints like Evenly Matched and Hieratic Seal of the Heavenly Spheres, it's impressive that Sunavalon's kept pace as one of the headline items in Ghosts From the Past.
Sunavalon's probably got one of the tighter Extra Decks you'll run, but it's a really fun theme to play, and it's on the budget side, so it's nice that it's accessible to those of us who don't have infinite money. Lots of cards in GFTP are sort of subsidized by the big money pulls, and the Sunavalon, Sunvine, and Sunseeds are downright cheap; they're all in the $1 to $2 range. Last week, I talked about the Top 10 GFTP cards everybody wants, and even I was surprised to see Sunavalon wind up so high on the list. At the time, the Sunavalon cards weren't as affordable as they are now.
I guess if I wanted to make sure all the cards stay cheap, I could write an article calling them absolute trash. But first, nobody would want to read that; and second, that would be a lie. Plants have a special place in the hearts of many duelists, mine included, so why not share the fun?
While I may not have a bunch of sentient trees growing in my backyard, I understand the allure of this theme's artwork, and this deck as a whole. Make sure to pick up your Sunavalon cards while they're still at rock bottom, because newer Plants in sets down the road may spike their value!
I'm going to call this deck "Sunavalon" since most of the Link Monsters have the Sunavalon name stamp, but the deck heavily features Sunseed Genius Loci as well. "Sunavalon" just sounds cooler, and looking at the discussion of these themes in the community, I think most would agree that Sunavalon is the accepted name.
Not everything you do with this strategy revolves around Sunseed Genius Loci, but it's the keystone holding the deck together. Sunavalon Dryas can only search a Sunvine spell or trarp if you used Sunseed Genius Loci as the Link Material. All of the Sunvine Link 1s require a Plant Normal Monster. Sunvine Shrine was basically built for Sunseed Genius Loci.
To remember who's who, the Sunseeds are mostly Main Deck monsters, the Sunvines are mostly Link 1s that get destroyed if your big Plants die, and the Sunavalons are the trees where all your Plant friends live. If you look at the card art, it paints a clear picture of the relationship between these cards, and an understanding of basic biology helps too.
Back to the matter at hand: I think the way to go is to maximize your access to Sunseed Genius Loci. Anyone playing the deck probably agrees it's a good idea to see Sunseed Genius Loci often, but I want to see it as often as possible. I'll run extra copies of it just to make sure it's available every game.
Therefore, Unexpected Dai, Rescue Rabbit, and Where Arf Thou? all make the list. Trust me when I say access to Sunseed Genius Loci is necessary to make the deck really work.
Maybe that isn't a shock to you, but I didn't want to surprise you when you look at this list and see so many cards that help you seek it out.
Yu-Gi-Oh! TCG Deck - Loukas's Sunavalon Deck by Loukas Peterson
'Loukas's Sunavalon Deck' - constructed deck list and prices for the Yu-Gi-Oh! Trading Card Game from TCGplayer Infinite!
Created By: Loukas Peterson
Market Price: $188.24
Market Price: $0.49
Send 1 Level 4 or lower Normal Monster from your Deck to the GY, and if you do, add 1 card with the same name as that card from your Deck to your hand. You can only activate 1 "Painful Decision" per turn.
Market Price: $0.21
If a monster(s) is Normal or Special Summoned, except by the effect of "Black Garden": Halve its ATK, also you Special Summon 1 "Rose Token" (Plant-Type/DARK/Level 2/ATK 800/DEF 800) to its controller's opponent's side of the field, in Attack Position. (This ATK loss remains even if this card leaves the field.) You can target 1 monster in your Graveyard with ATK equal to the total ATK of all Plant-Type monsters on the field; destroy this card and as many Plant-Type monsters on the field as possible, then if the total ATK the destroyed monsters had on the field is equal to that target's ATK, Special Summon that target.
Market Price: $0.59
2 Plant monsters, including a "Sunavalon" Link Monster
This card cannot be targeted for attacks, but does not prevent your opponent from attacking you directly. Twice per turn, if you take battle or effect damage: You can gain that much LP, and if you do, Special Summon 1 "Sunvine" monster from your Extra Deck.
Ash Blossom & Joyous Spring
Market Price: $19.14
When a card or effect is activated that includes any of these effects (Quick Effect): You can discard this card; negate that effect.
• Add a card from the Deck to the hand.
• Special Summon from the Deck.
• Send a card from the Deck to the GY.
You can only use this effect of "Ash Blossom & Joyous Spring" once per turn.
Market Price: $0.24
Cannot be Special Summoned from the Deck. You can banish this face-up card you control; Special Summon 2 Level 4 or lower Normal Monsters with the same name from your Deck, but destroy them during the End Phase. You can only use this effect of "Rescue Rabbit" once per turn.
Market Price: $0.41
2+ monsters with different names
If this card is Link Summoned: You can discard 1 card, then target 1 Spell/Trap your opponent controls; destroy it, then, if this card was co-linked when this effect was activated, you can draw 1 card. You can only use this effect of "Knightmare Phoenix" once per turn. Co-linked monsters you control cannot be destroyed by battle.
Market Price: $0.86
Activate this card by sending 1 card from your hand to the GY while you control a "Sunavalon" Link Monster. You cannot Special Summon monsters from the Extra Deck, except Plant monsters. Once per turn, during your Main Phase: You can Special Summon 1 Level 4 or lower Plant Normal Monster from your GY. Once per turn, during your opponent's End Phase: You can send this face-up card to the GY, then target 1 Continuous Trap in your GY; Set it to your Spell & Trap Zone.
One for One
Market Price: $1.63
Send 1 monster from your hand to the Graveyard; Special Summon 1 Level 1 monster from your hand or Deck.
Where Arf Thou?
Market Price: $0.45
If you control a face-up Level 1 monster: Add 1 Level 1 monster from your Deck to your hand. During the End Phase of this turn, take 2000 damage if you did not Normal Summon the added monster, or a card with the same name, after activating this card.
Garden Rose Maiden
Market Price: $6.12
1 Tuner + 1+ non-Tuner monsters
If this card is Special Summoned: You can add 1 "Black Garden" from your Deck or GY to your hand. You can banish this card from your GY, then target 1 "Rose Dragon" monster or 1 Dragon Synchro Monster in your GY; Special Summon it. You can only use each effect of "Garden Rose Maiden" once per turn.
Crystal Wing Synchro Dragon
Market Price: $4.76
1 Tuner + 1+ non-Tuner Synchro Monsters
Once per turn, when another monster's effect is activated (Quick Effect): You can negate the activation, and if you do, destroy that monster, and if you do that, this card gains ATK equal to the destroyed monster's original ATK until the end of this turn. If this card battles an opponent's Level 5 or higher monster, during damage calculation: This card gains ATK equal to the current ATK of the opponent's monster it is battling during that damage calculation only.
Market Price: $0.85
You can Set this card from your hand to your Spell & Trap Card Zone as a Spell Card. During your opponent's turn, if this Set card in the Spell & Trap Card Zone is destroyed and sent to your Graveyard: Special Summon it. During your opponent's turn: You can Tribute this card from your hand or face-up from your side of the field; neither player can banish cards for the rest of this turn. (this is a Quick Effect).
Market Price: $1.90
1 Plant Normal Monster
If a "Sunavalon" Link Monster(s) you control leaves the field by card effect: Destroy this card. If this card is Special Summoned: You can target 1 "Sunavalon" Link Monster on the field; this card gains ATK equal to its Link Rating x 800. When this card destroys an opponent's monster by battle and sends it to the GY: You can Special Summon that monster to your zone a Link Monster points to, but negate its effects.
Market Price: $0.74
If you control a Plant Normal Monster: You can Special Summon this card from your hand. You can banish this card from your GY, then target 1 of your linked Link-2 or lower "Sunavalon" or "Sunvine" monsters; Special Summon 1 monster with the same name from your Extra Deck, but negate its effects, also you cannot Special Summon monsters for the rest of this turn, except Plant monsters. You can only use each effect of "Sunseed Shadow" once per turn.
Market Price: $0.26
If you control no monsters: Special Summon 1 Level 4 or lower Normal Monster from the Deck.
Droll & Lock Bird
Market Price: $14.09
If your opponent adds a card(s) from their Deck to their hand, except during the Draw Phase, you can send this card from your hand to the Graveyard. For the rest of this turn, neither player can add card(s) from their Deck to their hand. (Drawing cards is also considered as "adding a card to the hand".)
Sunseed Genius Loci
Market Price: $0.27
This seed can only be harvested from the sacred tree once every thousand years, and will become the guardian spirit of its land after a thousand more.
Market Price: $1.10
1 Level 4 or lower Plant monster
If this card is Link Summoned in the Extra Monster Zone using "Sunseed Genius Loci" as material: You can add 1 "Sunvine" Spell/Trap from your Deck to your hand. This card cannot be targeted for attacks, but does not prevent your opponent from attacking you directly. Once per turn, if you take battle or effect damage: You can gain that much LP, and if you do, Special Summon 1 "Sunvine" monster from your Extra Deck.
Pot of Desires
Market Price: $1.56
Banish 10 cards from the top of your Deck, face-down; draw 2 cards. You can only activate 1 "Pot of Desires" per turn.
Market Price: $0.18
1 Plant Normal Monster
If a "Sunavalon" Link Monster(s) you control leaves the field by card effect: Destroy this card. If this card is Special Summoned: You can target 1 "Sunavalon" Link Monster on the field; gain LP equal to its Link Rating x 300. When your Plant Link Monster inflicts battle damage to your opponent: You can gain 600 LP.
Market Price: $0.92
2+ Link Monsters
If this card is Link Summoned: You can add 1 "Sunavalon" Spell/Trap from your Deck to your hand. This card cannot be destroyed by your opponent's card effects, and cannot be targeted for attacks, but does not prevent your opponent from attacking you directly. Once per turn: You can Tribute 1 Link Monster this card points to; destroy any number of cards your opponent controls, up to that monster's Link Rating.
Market Price: $3.53
2 Plant monsters
If your LP are higher than your opponent's, this card and any Plant monsters it points to cannot be destroyed by battle. You can Tribute 1 monster this card points to; Special Summon 1 Plant monster from your Deck in Defense Position. You can only use this effect of "Aromaseraphy Jasmine" once per turn. Once per turn, if you gain LP: Add 1 Plant monster from your Deck to your hand.
Market Price: $2.46
While the equipped monster battles, your opponent cannot activate any Spell/Trap Cards until the end of the Damage Step. When an attack is declared involving the equipped monster: Face-up Spell/Trap Cards your opponent controls have their effects negated until the end of the Damage Step (even if this card leaves the field). When the equipped monster destroys an opponent's monster by battle: You can destroy all Spell and Trap Cards your opponent controls. When this face-up card in a player's Spell & Trap Zone leaves the field, that player takes 3000 damage.
Market Price: $0.90
Once per turn: You can Tribute 1 face-up Plant-Type monster; Special Summon 1 Plant-Type monster from your Deck.
Market Price: $0.50
When this card is activated: If you control a Link-4 or higher Plant Link Monster, negate the effects of all face-up monsters your opponent controls. During damage calculation, if your Plant Link Monster battles: You can make that monster gain ATK equal to the total ATK of all monsters it points to, until the end of this turn (even if this card leaves the field). You can only use this effect of "Sunavalon Bloom" once per turn. You can only activate 1 "Sunavalon Bloom" per turn.
Market Price: $0.13
If a face-up Plant monster(s) you control is sent to the GY (except during the Damage Step): You can Special Summon this card from your hand. If a Plant monster is on the field and this card is in your GY: You can add this card to your hand. You can only use 1 "Rose Girl" effect per turn, and only once that turn.
Market Price: $64.54
2+ Effect Monsters
Your opponent cannot activate cards or effects in response to this card's effect activations. If this card is Link Summoned: You can target 1 Link Monster that was used as material for its Link Summon; this card gains ATK equal to that monster's Link Rating x 1000. You can banish 1 Link Monster from your field or GY; destroy 1 card your opponent controls, also for the rest of this turn, you cannot banish monsters with that same Attribute to activate this effect of "Accesscode Talker".
Market Price: $1.44
Pun intended, this deck plays like an overgrown garden full of weeds. Sometimes the weeds are sentient and create deadly Plants, but when people are always trying to tear down forests, hey, I don't blame the Plants for fighting back!
If you start with Sunseed Genius Loci, Sunseed Shadow, and another card in hand, your basic combo is pretty simple:
I don't want to say that's instant OTK material, but keep in mind that Sunavalon Dryatrentiay searches Sunavalon Bloom, which effectively shuts down your opponent's entire field. With a 4000 ATK Sunvine Thrasher on your board, there isn't much your opponent can do except wait around amongst all the dead weight. Next turn you can Link into another Sunvine Thrasher, sometimes even two more, and finish your opponent with a barrage of twig beatings.
That's not the only combo this deck has going for it, but it's why Sunseed Genius Loci and access to Sunseed Genius Loci support is so pivotal. It can turn mediocre Normal Monsters into greather-than-lethal damage, as long as you have the right stuff in your Extra Deck.
Ultimately, I think the biggest difficulty the Sunavalon strategy faces is its dependence on limited resources in the Extra Deck. You'll burn through your Sunavalons and Sunvines very quickly, and if you're uncomfortable with that, I'd suggest you consider cards like Pot of Avarice to extend your longevity.
The thing that drew me to Sunavalon is a bit weird and archaic by today's standards of deck building. How often do we wait around for the Battle Phase to trigger effects? Never? That's what I thought too, until I realized that Sunavalon Links want to do exactly that. Whenever you take damage - from battle or from a card effect - you'll gain that much back and then get a free Sunvine from your Extra Deck.
I'm not calling that the focal point of the deck, but it's important and you really want to get maximum value out of it. If your sole goal is Link climbing to field negates so you can control the board, this deck might not be for you. It's not as much of a throwback as something like Flamvell Firedog, but yes, attacking to trigger effects is something this deck has to do.
I can't understate how important this all is to Sunavalon. The deck can easily field Sunseed Genius Loci and Sunseed Shadow, but even with Sunvine Shrine the deck is hurt by a lack of monsters that are easy to place on the field. I wanted to incorporate stuff like Sunseed Twin, but it just didn't feel like it was delivering enough to warrant deck slots.
There are several cards that feed into your Plant-heavy strategy that incidentally trigger Sunavalon monsters. Where Arf Thou? searches Sunseed Genius Loci, and hey, you'll just take the damage. Remember, all the damage you take turns right into Life Point gain thanks to Sunavalon Dryas and Sunavalon Dryades. Not only does that field more Plants, but it triggers Aromaseraphy Jasmine, meaning you'll have the tools you need to succeed in your follow-up turns.
While straight up attacking into things will also trigger the Sunavalons for extra Sunvine monsters, there are a few cards that let you damage yourself to trigger more Sunavalon summons. However, most of them are suboptimal, and the only one I found to be worthwhile was White Veil. Most self-damage cards take more time than I have available, or they use up your Normal Summon when you'd rather be using it for something else.
Ultimately, some games come down to summoning Accesscode Talker. During various stages of Link climbing, White Veil can trigger a Sunvine for free, but the icing on the cake is making Accesscode Talker even more of an OTK machine than it already is. Equipping White Veil to Accesscode Talker means even decks with lots of spells and traps are no match for your ultimate Link 4.
One of the biggest drawbacks to running so many Normal Monster support cards may be obvious - you'll often have more Normal Monsters than you want. Sunseed Genius Loci makes the deck function, and another vanilla can be useful for Link Summons or Sunvine Shrine, but after that? They're often a waste of space.
Additionally, going first didn't always net the most impressive plays for this strategy. I'm all about Sunavalon Bloom, but I wanted to dip back into something more conventional… if you can really call any of this "conventional."
So yeah, sue me, but any time Plants are involved my mind goes straight to Garden Rose Maiden. It may not be the most Plant-forward card, because it does more to support Black Garden and Dragons, but it makes use of all your "extra" Normal Monster support in a creative way.
While I don't typically throw in superfluous cards as a backup plan when I'm building decks, I often found that with this build, there were situations where making Plants just wasn't ideal. It's not that Sunvavlon plays are bad, but distilling the deck down to nothing but Sunavalon Dryatrentiay wasn't novel or interesting.
Funny enough, making Crystal Wing Synchro Dragon via Garden Rose Maiden adds a buffer that lets the deck to do something a little less Plant-focused, and that range really benefits the strategy. With Angel Trumpeter and Rose Girl, you end on Crystal Wing Synchro Dragon really easily. Black Garden a searchable way to revive a fallen Sunvine Thrasher, and ultimately Garden Rose Maiden can revive your Crystal Wing Synchro Dragon too.
When Lightning Overdrive brings us Benghalances of the Samsaric Cycle, this strategy can go in a different direction. But for now, I like throwing something at the opponent that they won't see coming, and this deck offers just enough surprise factors to steal wins and keep your opponent on their toes.
Just remember: beat your opponents before they beat you.