I spend a great amount of time pestering Loukas Peterson. Whether it be by repeatedly asking for food when I'm at his apartment or constantly borrowing cards I don't want to buy myself, one fact remains the same: I enjoy annoying him to no end. One of my favorite things is poking fun at his persistent Spellbook fetish. While I find Spellbooks to be extremely boring and repetitive, Loukas thinks they're the bee's knees. The only version I've ever not hated is one grounded in Reaper of Prophecy, and that's the one Loukas despises the most. Sure, he'll try and make Rank 5 Spellbooks happen, but mention Reaper Turbo once and you'll get to listen to a ten minute rant on why he'll never play it.

Naturally, I suggest it to him on a daily basis.

Well, I've finally given up on convincing the Spellbook master to use the only cool Prophecy monster, so I'm going to tackle the challenge myself. A Spellbook deck centered on Reaper of Prophecy has some inherent problems to overcome. Reaper isn't as useful as High Priestess of Prophecy in your hand, but it isn't as bad as drawing World of Prophecy. On the other side of the coin, its effect isn't nearly as good as World of Prophecy's, but you can pull it off more frequently. Additionally, while Temperance of Prophecy and Justice of Prophecy tend to find spots in most conventional Spellbook decks, Fool of Prophecy is tailored specifically for Reaper. Here's what I came up with:

DECKID=99436This deck's actually very similar to regular Spellbook builds when you look at the big picture. You're cycling through The Grand Spellbook Tower, Spellbook of Secrets, and Spellbook of Fate turn after turn to gain unfair card advantage over your opponent. But the difference between Reaper Turbo and your run-of-the-mill Spellbook deck rests in how it uses its Level 3 monster, Fool of Prophecy. Instead of pushing huge World of Prophecy plays out with Temperance or building a huge hand with Justice of Prophecy, Fool sets up your combos and loads your graveyard with Spellbooks for Reaper.

Spellbooks For All Your Needs
As with any Prophecy deck, your Turn 1 plan is to end the turn with The Grand Spellbook Tower active and Spellbook of Fate set. That gives you a solid line of defense while starting up your double draw next turn.

The easiest way to make that happen is to use Spellbook of Secrets to get Spellbook Magician of Prophecy, then Normal Summoning Magician to search out Spellbook of the Master. Activating Master and revealing a Spellbook gets you either Spellbook of Fate or The Grand Spellbook Tower – whichever you don't have already. You can extend that play by starting off with Spellbook Library of the Crescent, which will grab any combination of Secrets, Tower, Fate, or Master. Adding Crescent into the mix means that opening with just it and any other Spellbook card will likely end your turn with Tower, Fate, and three Spellbooks in grave. That play sequence is doable throughout almost the entire duel, and it's the bread and butter of Spellbook strategies.

Beyond those four 'books you've got plenty of others to handle every situation imaginable. Spellbook of Power's your theme-stamped ATK boost, helping your smaller monsters topple even the largest of threats. The previously mentioned Spellbook of the Master can even copy Power's effect, pumping your monster up by 2000 ATK and netting you a double search if you attack over something. Spellbook of Eternity recycles banished Spellbooks, and once again Master extends that play by adding a second banished Spellbook to your hand. The Spellbook arsenal's full of really good cards that can only be used once per turn, and then Spellbook of the Master comes in and just messes everything up.

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As if things weren't silly enough, Spellbook of Life is your theme-stamped Monster Reborn. It probably requires the most set-up of all the Spellbooks, but the payoff's huge, giving you that extra Special Summon that's often needed to seal the deal. Spellbook of Wisdom is a searchable Forbidden Lance that prevents your combos from disruption because why not. Your entire deck is at the tip of your fingers, and if that's not unfair then I don't know what is.

Unfair? I Thought You Said Funfair!
The only time I enjoy the sheer ridiculousness of Spellbooks is when it's combined with Reaper of Prophecy. Why? Because Reaper is so cool looking! I acknowledge that picking the boss monster that's slightly underwhelming in actual gameplay based solely on style isn't the most logical decision making, but I can respectfully announce that I don't really care. Reaper has three killer effects that, once activated, put the opponent in a rough spot. It's not as game breaking as World of Prophecy, and not as good at grinding out your opponent like High Priestess of Prophecy, but Reaper finds its spot dead center in the middle of the two. Its abilities won't immediately win you the game, but they'll put you in such a good position that it's hard for the opponent to mount a comeback.

Fool of Prophecy's the easiest way to get to Reaper. The basic combo I mentioned at the beginning of the article is doable without Spellbook Magician of Prophecy given the right hand. Throw Fool into the mix and you'll put four Spellbooks in grave, triggering two of Reaper's effects when you Special Summon it in the End Phase. If you really want to, feel free to activate a random Spellbook of Wisdom or Spellbook of Power to up your book count to five, unleashing all three of Reaper's effects first turn.

Of course, the likelihood of getting five Spellbooks to your graveyard increases with time. Reaper becomes increasingly good as the turns go by and more 'books hit the graveyard. Unfortunately, as the duel drags on there's also a better chance of dead drawing a Reaper. I've offset this risk by playing a full suite of Good Goblin Housekeeping. This trap hasn't seen play in years, but it's a perfect fit in this particular strategy. The initial -1 isn't an issue when The Grand Spellbook Tower's giving you an additional draw every turn, and as you get to your second and third copies you'll be plusing like crazy. At the very least, Housekeeping replaces dead Reapers with something useable, more than making up for the -1.

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Remember that you can only use one Reaper of Prophecy once per turn. You can't just Fool into Reaper into Reaper into Reaper into Prophecy Destroyer (thank God). With your first Reaper activation you'll want to get Prophecy Destroyer, turning your Fool of Prophecy into a 2600 ATK beater, a 2500 ATK beater, and another Spellbook. Should both of your Level 6 monsters survive until your following turn, Rank 6 plays can happen. Norito the Moral Leader is the most obvious choice, filling the role as a Spellcaster Six Samurai Shi En. Constellar Ptolemy M7 is also a viable option, removing threats that you couldn't overcome otherwise. A slew of other Rank 6's fill up the majority of your Extra Deck, making an already versatile archetype that much more resilient.

I guess at the end of the day you've got to weigh the benefits of playing the Reaper version of Spellbooks over other variants. You're definitely going to suffer a few more dead hands, but it's just so much more interesting than the standard build. If you have any suggestions for individual card choices or just want to share your opinion on Reaper Turbo, feel free to voice your opinion in the comment section below! Next time around I'll be using new cards from Legacy of the Valiant, and that'll be the kickoff into the next couple months of Yu-Gi-Oh!

-Doug Zeeff

Article Aftermath #25