As we counted down the hours this week to the new F&L List, more and more deck lists emerged from Regional Top 8's and National Championships. And while there was a surprising volume of success for rogue decks last weekend, the biggest story to come out of the dozen or so Regional Qualifiers played in North American metagames was a big increase of Demise True Draco strategies in Top 8's.
After several weeks of success for True Draco Zoodiacs, a more pure strain of Dracos suddenly saw a resurgence in places like Ft. Worth Texas, Kissimmee Florida, and St. Louis Missourri. Different variants ran cards like Fossil Dyna Pachycephalo, Deck Lockdown, and Skill Drain, straying from the format norm of ubiquitous hand traps to leverage the pure card advantage of Card of Demise instead. It was the kind of development we don't normally see in the sunset phase of a format, and combined with the rise of True Draco Zoodiacs, the result was a heavy demand for True Draco cards once again.
Meanwhile we saw a bit of a Rebound for Dinosaur variants with and without Dragonic Diagram, which seems noteworthy as we head into what many are hoping will be a second chance format for the theme. We also saw some new life for SPYRALS and Blue-Eyes White Dragon, while some recent tournament results in the OCG may have determined our Number 1 bestseller once again.
Without further ado, let's get right to the Top 10.
#10: Quaking Mirror Force
Quaking Mirror Force has seen a bit more play lately, but it also got some endorsements from notable players as a potential point of investment this week. Those two factors likely combined to raise Quaking Mirror Force into the Top 10, sending the Dinosmasher's Fury reprint to an average Market Price of $3.50 on an upward price trend.
#9: Predaplant Ophrys Scorpio
Baobaboon's started to gain major steam in tournaments, and enthusiasm for Predaplant Ophrys Scorpio and Predaplant Darlingtonia Cobra seems to be slipping a little in response, but Scorpio was still the Number 9 bestselling card in the TCGplayer Marketplace this week. Cobra was close behind at Number 12.
We've said it before, but pretty much everything that could replace Speedroid Terrortop and Speedroid Taketomborg in the new format has been selling really well since the announcement of the new F&L List. Predaplants, Baobaboon, and Windwitches are all going to be big in the early weeks of completion.
#8: Thousand-Eyes Restrict
The classic Fusion Monster's abrupt return to the Top 10 is probably a late response to Elder Entity Norden's soon-to-be-Forbidden status, as players look for new ways – or old ways – to use Instant Fusion. Loukas played Thousand-Eyes Restrict in this week's Rerouting Deck Fix, though he's far from the only player experimenting with it.
#7: True King Lithosagym, the Disaster
The lynchpin True King in True King Dinosaur decks fell from Number 1 to Number 7 over the course of the last few days, but the successful Dinosaur decks we saw cropping up in Regional Qualifier Top 8's this week kept True King Lithosagym, the Disaster firm at Number 7.
The Disaster remains one of the hottest cards of 2017 so far, but we'll have to see if Dinosaurs can capitalize on the new format before we can judge if that trend will continue. For now, the card's continued popularity seems to suggest a lot of players will be playing Dinosaurs come Monday.
#6: Ghost Ogre & Snow Rabbit
It's kind of peculiar to see Ghost Ogre & Snow Rabbit suddenly back in the Top 10, since many duelists expect that it won't be as useful in the new Advanced Format. Why did it spike to Number 6 this week? Unclear. It remained extremely popular in Regionals Top 8's, but it's been a must-run for months now.
#5: Interrupted Kaiju Slumber
More True Dracos means more reasons to run Kaijus, and full Kaiju engines with three to four Kaiju monsters plus double Interrupted Kaiju Slumber become more and more common with each passing week. It's no surprise to see Slumber back in the Top 1; it's been here more times than we can count since its initial release.
Still under three bucks, it's a wildly affordable must-own for any serious competitive player. The demand is well understood at this point.
#4: True King's Return
Down from the Number 3 spot it held on Monday, True King's Return has turned from a one-of in True Draco Zoodiacs to a potential two-of in that deck, and its status as a must-run at three in Demise Draco variants seemed vastly more important after the weekend, where we saw many Demise True Draco players making Regional Top 8's.
It's easy to see why True King's Return held its momentum, and it's safe to expect we'll see lots of it in the upcoming format.
#3: Dinomight Knight, the True Dracofighter
Our next bestseller was more interesting, as Dinomight Knight, the True Dracofighter jumped from nowhere near the Top 10 last week, to Number 8 on Monday, and now all the way to Number 3.
Most of that's probably due to the rise of Demise Draco variants, but we did see at least one notable example of Dinomight Knight in a True Draco Zoo variant, since it was played to a Championship win at the Spanish Nationals.
More suggestive that this was a response to Demise Draco's surge: Ignis Heat clocked in at Number 11 from Monday to Friday, and Majesty Maiden, the True Dracocaster came in at Number 17. There are clearly a lot of people who were inspired to pick up Demise True Dracos this week, since neither card has ever seen play in Draco Zoo.
#2: True Draco Heritage
Up from Number 4 on Monday, True Draco Heritage is about as popular as True King's Return. It's played as a singleton and now an emerging two-of in True Draco Zoodiacs, and it's an obvious staple at three in Demise Draco.
Is there a price spike in the making to get ahead of? Heritage is currently on a flat Price Trend, so it seems safe for now, but Ultra Rares from recent releases under the current foil collation are always vulnerable to price spikes. The fact that we could see not one, but two top decks running Heritage next format is slightly concerning.
#1: Fairy Tail - Luna
And finally, several logged tournament decks in the OCG this week played triple Fairy Tail – Luna in Kaiju Windwitch decks, as documented by our friends over at The Organization. It's very good in the mirror match in the OCG, and while aspirations for its use are a bit more varied here in the TCG, it seems as if those tournament results made it a hot prospect.
As an accessible Super Rare with competitive potential and a possible speculative upside, it's no longer surprising whenever we see it spike back into the Top 5.
And that was it for this, the last Market Watch Top 10 under the current Advanced Format. Come Monday we'll bring you another countdown to kick off the new era of competition, but the secondary market won't have nearly so much to go off of – there are only two more Regional Qualifiers left in the North American season: one in Rosemont Illinois, and one in London, Ontario; effectively Chicago and Toronto.
From there we'll see the Central American WCQ on June 24th, the South American WCQ on July 1st, and finally the North American WCQ on July 8th. The 2016/2017 competitive season is winding up to its grand finale at the World Championship in August, and we'll be bringing you all the secondary market trends along the way.
See you on Monday!