The UDS Invitational in Indianapolis is just a week away, a spotlight forsome of the most creative and determined duelists in North America. Thatevent will give us a small sample of what's possible in the new format, andone week later everything kicks off in earnest: the Yu-Gi-Oh! ChampionshipSeries arrives in Oregon for the first time ever with YCS Portland, andthat same weekend will also see Regional Qualifers played in KissimmeeFlorida, Laurel Maryland, St. Louis Missourri, Tulsa Oklahoma, S. PortlandMaine, Menomonee Falls Wisconsin and Montreal Quebec.
The YCS and the Regionals surrounding it will set the pace for the weeks tocome, acting as a proving ground for strategies old and new. Will SkyStrikers and Thunder Dragons survive the Forbidden & Limited List toremain dominant? Will underdogs like True Dracos and Cyber Dragons step up?And where has the new format left decks like Orcusts and Salamangreats? Wewon't have answers until the end of the month, so for now the secondarymarket is still revolving around the most recent hits: Tenyi, Guardragons,Heroes and the up-and-coming Maju Garzett deck.
What did that amount to in the TCGplayer bestseller lists this week? Todaywe'll be looking at the Top 10 by number of unique purchases – the numberof players who picked up a copy of each card determines the rankings in ourcountdown. And with that in mind we'll get it all started with the hopefulremnants of the Guardragon engine.
#10 - Hieratic Seal of the Heavenly Spheres
Integral to the biggest and best Guardragon combos in the game, HieraticSeal of the Heavenly Spheres continues to be a solid $7 pick weeks afterrestrictions were placed on some of the other Guardragon accomplices. It'svery possible that Thunder Dragons will remain a top deck in the newformat, and if that's to be the case Heavenly Spheres will surely be partof the strategy. For now though, it's tough to tell if the demand for thepowerful Link-2 is a direct reflection of confidence in Thunder Dragons, orif it's cut with enthusiasm for less proven strategies that can also splashGuardragon engines.
Personally if I was going to a big Regional or a YCS this month, I'd bet onseeing Thunder Dragons all over the place, and the demand for HeavenlySpheres almost certainly reflects that.
#9 - Fists of the Unrivaled Tenyi
Tenyi were huge all week long. Just like last week, if we were to flip thescript and order this list by sheer volume of cards sold the Tenyi wouldtake almost the entire Top 10 – a mix of must-run three-ofs and a littlemarket speculation tends to create that sort of clean sweep, and
#8 - Vision HERO Faris
Vision HERO Faris is still one of the biggest movers fromBattles of Legend: Hero's Revenge, riding a converging waves oftrends that range from GX nostalgia to hype for upcoming hero support inlater sets this year. This card's still five bucks, weeks after its releaseand with no immediate competitive prospects – kind of impressive. Does thatsay something about the card's tournament potential? Does it just reflectcollector interest from GX fans and Hero players? We'll have to see howthings go down in Regionals before we'll know for sure, but for now thedemand remains surprising.
#7 - Gizmek Orochi, the Serpentron Sky Slasher
With so much up in the air about the new format, and the well-acknowledgedSky Striker and Thunder Dragon decks the two arguable front-runners, therearen't a ton of big new cards that players are placing their bets on.
Except this one. Gizmek Orochi, the Serpentron Sky Slasher's continuing tocreep up the sales charts as it hugs the $10 mark, representingconsiderable interest in a relatively expensive card compared to all thenon-foil nickel buys that could be outselling it. Played in everything fromNurse Burn to a semi promising Maju Garzett strategy that's been making therounds, it's probably the biggest sleeper hit from Rising Rampage.If it sees real success even just at. The UDS Invitational it could easilydouble in price, so a lot of savvy players are already getting their copieswhile the Gizmek getting's good.
#6 - Called by the Grave
With so many competitive events on the horizon demand has picked up onceagain for Called by the Grave. Just like we said at the start of lastformat, Konami's done nothing to suggest that they might want to mitigatethe role of hand traps in tournament play, and as long as they remain astaple of competition Called by the Grave is going to be a must-own for anyduelist that wants to win tournament matches. While it's not necessary insome strategies, Called by the Grave's effectively your first line ofdefense if your deck lives and dies on the success of big combo plays. Andwhile the landscape of the new format's still up in the air, it's probablya safe bet that big Turn 1 decks that set up big fields entrenched withnegations are still going to be a factor.
#5 - Vision HERO Increase
The Hero tables have turned! At least for the moment, as Vision HEROIncrease not just joins Vision HERO Faris at the top of the charts thisweek, but outpaces it by a handful of sales. Again, that's likely a mix offactors: Heroes are one of the biggest nostalgia themes in the game, GXfandom has grown tremendously over the last year, and there's definitelysome longshot competitive potential with more Heroes slated for release andElemental Hero Stratos now Semi-Limited.
Speaking of Stratos, how awesome are
I need it in my life.
#4 - Fusion Destiny
Despite its numerous restrictions, Fusion Destiny's an incredibly easy cardto play that offers immediate value for effectively no cost, with drawbacksthat synergize with cards surrounding it. While Heroes may still not becompetitive it's easy to see why a card this simple and powerful wouldinspire Hero fans to want to give the deck a shot again.
(Also, yes, it's 2019 and a card with seven lines of text, threerestrictions, and interactions with your Main Deck, Extra Deck, hand,graveyard and field is what we now refer to as "simple".)
#3 - White Howling
White Howling's popularity continues to suggest sustained interest inWater-heavy decks like Marincess, Mermails and Frogs, as well as the risingexpectations for Sky Strikers in the new format. We're not looking atanything drastic yet, but supply at the $1 mark is starting to dry up and Iwouldn't be surprised if this bubbled to $2 or $2.50 by the time Regionalsroll around.
Negating all of your opponent's spells for a turn can be an utter deathsentence to some strategies, akin to some of the greatest floodgates of alltime, so the sustained player interest in this thing doesn't seemmisplaced. We'll have to see how it turns out in real tournament play, butif you don't have your copies yet and you think there might be someShizukus in your dueling future, it's a good idea to snag a few just incase.
#2 - Monk of the Tenyi
Tenyi, still crushing it. More specifically, the two Tenyi cards that couldsee play outside of a dedicated Tenyi strategy, Monk of the Tenyi and…
#1 …Tenyi Spirit - Vishuda
A very simple extender that you can Special Summon whenever you don'tcontrol any effect monsters, Tenyi Spirit offers fodder material forsummons, the Wyrm type-stamp and a powerful spin effect that can oustalmost any threat as long as you control a non-effect monster. That meansMonk of the Tenyi, sure, but it also works with some more familiar cardslike LANphorhynchus. The ability to hit the field and immediately turn intoa Link-1 with a downward arrow and a free, versatile removal trick is huge,and between the demand for Tenyi as a strategy and the utility of Vishudaand Monk in other decks, this card wound up being the most popular of theweek.
At the very least Vishuda's a powerful, versatile combo enabler that takesup very Little Deck space, acting as a free Evacuation Device' rel="https://yugioh.tcgplayer.com/db/WP-CH.asp?CN=Compulsory Evacuation Device">Compulsory Evacuation Devicethat can hit backrow cards. Remember too that extra copies of Vishuda canbe played straight from the hand for that bounce effect as well – a detailthat's easy to forget and not often relevant, but occasionally useful.
What else was big this week? World Legacy Guardragon and Dragunity Knight-Romulus almost made the Top 10 after Romulus' domination last week – thehype for the OCG's Dragon Link deck might have taken a bit of a backseatthis time around, but it's still simmering in the background.
Flawless Perfection of the Tenyi and Tenyi Spirit – Mapura clocked in atNumber 13 and Number 14 reflecting the strong interest in Tenyis as a coretheme, and Guardragon Elpy came in at Number 15. I don't know if there'sanyone who thinks Guardragons are actually under control in the new format?But they're not, so get ready to see them all over the place just likebefore. The engine almost seems more powerful now that so many otherthreats are stunted by the F&L List.
That's it for this week, but I'd like to take a second to wish all the luckin the world to our North American representatives at the WorldChampionships this weekend! Like the rest of the dueling world, I'll bewatching from the edge of my seat to see who captures the title. Good luck!(Especially to my fellow Canadians!)