Today marks the official launch of Ignition Assault, and whenever we ramp up to a booster release there's always a question of how big a set will be in pre-sales. Sometimes tournament trends drive popularity and older cards just keep on rolling, sometimes pre-sales open a bit late and a set just doesn't make an impact on the Top 10 until the full release. Heck, sometimes a set just isn't good enough to catch secondary market attention early. Or ever!
But Ignition Assault isn't that kind of release. Seven of the Top 10 best-selling cards this week are from the new set, with @Ignisters andTime Thiefs both hitting big with the pre-sale crowd. A whopping seven Ignition Assault cards made the Top 10 from Monday to Friday morning. Lower rarity cards have an advantage during pre-sales since the supply of rarer cards is low, so we can't expect next week's numbers to look like today's, but for now there's a surprising enthusiasm for some of the easier pulls.
Aside from Ignition Assault, two of the remaining Top 10s this week were direct responses to the PPT Invitational in Orlando, and one is a massively popular card from Legendary Duelists: Magical Hero. If you scrolled down far enough you can probably see which LED6 card made the cut, but if you can't you may still find it easy to guess.
Before we get to that, let's dive into our Number 10 pick and the first IGAS hit of the week.
#10 - Wind Pegasus @Ignister
Two of the big @Ignister monsters are easily played in non-themed strategies, and this generic Level 7 Synchro's one of them. While Wind Pegasus @Ignister destroys more cards when you control more @Ignisters, it still pops a single spell or trap on its own and it still wields a retaliatory effect that's tough to play against since it doesn't destroy. As a Super Rare it's really affordable, and the secondary market was feelin' it all week long.
#9 - Elemental HERO Sunrise
The best-selling card from Magical Hero and our Number 1 card last week was still in the Top 10, as Elemental HERO Sunrise dipped to the $7 mark to become a little easier on the wallet. We didn't see much out of Heroes this past weekend, but with Regionals returning tomorrow and Sunday we'll get to see if Heroes have what it takes to compete in the new format.
Will they make it? It's a tough call, since Evil HERO Adusted Gold, Evil HERO Malicious Bane and Elemental HERO Liquid Soldier are all high-value cards that are simply out of reach for many duelists. But the reality is that Heroes were topping Regionals last format before the four biggest decks in the format were hamstrung. If Heroes fail to score Top 8 showings this weekend it'll start to raise some big questions about their viability. Heroes are definitely one of the big decks-to-watch in the next 72 hours.
#8 - Time Thief Startup
Hey! It's Quick-Play Double Summon with another effect!
And what an effect. Throwing a whack-ton of different Materials onto Time Thief Redoer loads it up for a banish dodge, a free draw, and a spin of any face-up card on your opponent's side of the field. That's awesome in a vacuum but it's even better when you consider all the ways you could end up with a naked Redoer in need of Xyz Materials.
This card effectively does three big things: it enables Xyz Summons, it drops an attacker to the field to squeak in damage, and then gasses up Time Thief Redoer or Time Thief Perpetua. Those are all worthwhile moves, and making all three of them with one card that's searchable via Winder's ability is pretty fantastic.
#7 - Light Dragon @Ignister
The other generic for the theme, Light Dragon @Ignister has an ability that can protect itself or any other monster you control, as well as a detach-to-destroy effect that pops one monster if it's your only @Ignister (and more if you have more of them). It also has another ability that works to bolster aggressive Cyberse decks. That might not sound like much, but the Cyberse themes have really stared to stack up at this point: Salamangreats, Marincess and Mathmechs top the list, and they could all potentially use this card.
Will they? We'll have to wait and find out; at last check it's auspicious beginnings with Light Dragon seeing little to no use in the OCG. But it's not a bad card, and the number of players buying it suggest that someone's definitely going to try and make it work.
#6 - Dark Ruler No More
With SPYRAL and several other strategies setting up big boards that start with Apollousa, Bow of the Goddess and only get more thicc from there, Dark Ruler No More's become a go-to answer. Personally I'm surprised The Winged Dragon of Ra - Sphere Mode didn't do better this week since it's another top pick for that, but for now, expect to see a lot of Ruler No More in your opponent's Side Decks.
#5 - Time Thief Retrograde
Time Thief Retrograde's a pretty cool themed negation, since everything that would normally 1-to-1 into it just to draw it out gets stuck onto your Perpetua or Redoer. Forcing or nullifying the activation of a themed negation trap's pretty common, but it's not very often that the controller of the negation gets something in the exchange. Again, the fact that Time Thief Winder searches this thing as a free +1 of card economy is largely what makes it so good.
So uhh, free negations are great? There's not much to say here. At this point the interesting factor's really more of a question than an assertion of card quality, and that question is this: can a Time Thief engine be viable? Is there a deck out there right now that can incorporate Time Thief cards smoothly enough to make that competitive? That's a big question for the next few weeks and I'm eager to see the answer.
#4 - Droll & Lock Bird
Want to beat SPYRAL? Better have this thing! There are very few hard answers that just shut down the SPYRAL strategy; Artifact Lancea can get the job done, but you have to be exceptionally careful because if you play it wrong you can leave your opponent with an infinite-use SPYRAL Quick-Fix. An early Droll & Lock Bird's usually your best option, and with every non-SPYRAL deck in the Top 16 of the PPT Invitational reportedly siding three copies, it appears to be a must-run for many.
Droll & Lock Bird's been printed four times, but two of those printings were in OTS Tournament Packs while the Starstrike Blast Rare is ten bucks. The Legendary Collection Kaiba Ultra Rare doesn't help much at $14, so that leaves the Order of the Spellcasters common as the only accessible print. That's sitting at 5 dollars right now in the TCGplayer Marketplace, and only two vendors have more than five copies listed. The supply could wind up being much lower than it looks.
#3 - Time Thief Perpetua
Perpetua could be way worse than she actually is and you'd still probably run her just to have another Time Thief Xyz to work with. As it stands Perpetua's got respectable ATK, a rolling ability that can trigger more effects if she survives a turn, and an assist effect that both loads an Xyz Material and thins your deck while prepping your graveyard. Guaranteeing a trap on Time Thief Redoer's a pretty big deal, but Perpetua's non-themed ability could be an asset too, especially once April 1st arrives with the Master Rule update.
To some degree, a good deal of Perpetua's value is probably invested in her ability to offer cheap detaches for Time Thief Bezel Ship. Where this card goes in the future is up in the air, but for now it's just sort of in the "good enough" category.
Come along, Pond.
#2 - Jack-o-Bolan
A graveyard-loading, Special Summoning field-filler that works as Level 7 material? Yes please. Jack-o-Bolan takes a lot of standard zombie combos into new territory, and if you control Zombie World it gets even better, permanently removing valuable monsters from your opponent's graveyard. It's exceptionally good with classic Zombies like Mezuki and Necroworld Banshee as discards, it makes Level 8 Synchros with Glow-Up Bloom, and it's searchable with that card too. Zombies haven't really been competitive for a while, and suddenly Jack-o-Bolan delivers a big boost to one of the game's most popular monster-type themes.
And since it's just a Super Rare, it sold like hotcakes.
#1 - Cross-Sheep
Finally, Cross-Sheep is the most expensive regular Rare in Ignition Assault, clocking in at $3.50 as of this writing. That's more than 11 times the price of the next most valuable Rare, Aussa the Earth Charmer, Immovable, at 31 cents. It's actually more expensive than 6 of the set's 10 Ultra Rares.
Is it short printed? Are knitting sheep just really popular?
What is happening.
Who did this.
Looking beyond the Top 10, World Chalice Guardragon Almarduke almost made the cut at Number 11, integral to a variety of up-and-coming plays in some pretty deep cut combo decks. Linkuriboh came in at Number 12, and from there it was all IGAS with Time Thief Chronocorder, Abominable Unchained Soul and Marincess Pascalus at Numbers 13 through 15.
We'll be back with another Market Updateon Facebook and Twitter on Monday, when we'll see the first sales numbers from Ignition Assault post-launch. A lot of stuff could change in just a few days, so don't miss it.