While recent weeks were dominated by Tenyi and experimental picks fromRising Rampage, we saw a massive shift this week towardcompetitive cards in acknowledged strategies: Guardragons and Sky Strikerswere clearly the biggest hits of the week with the return of Regionals justone week away. Of the Top 10 bestselling cards by volume, four can belinked directly to Sky Strikers and two are Guardragon staples.
Meanwhile Called by the Grave continued to be the bestselling card of theyear so far, always spiking in demand when tournament action is picking up,and a couple of Tenyi still managed to remain in the Top 10. Crackdownpopped up as well, raising questions about some of the format's dark horsestrategies.
With all that in mind, let's get right into the Top 10 and see which cardsreigned supreme in the TCGplayer Marketplace Monday to Friday.
#10 - Mystic Mine
If you took a poll asking players to name the most questionable call on thelatest F&L List, the lack of restriction on Mystic Mine would be a verypopular answer. With an effect that can dominate duels from the get-go andsteal back lost victories just as easily, the controversial Field Spellbecame a hallmark of the Sky Striker theme in the WCQ season. While MysticMine Burn decks largely failed to make the impact some feared, Mine itselfstill appeared in almost every viable deck at some point, ripping wins awayfrom duelists who thought they were in control.
The surge of interest in Mystic Mine is likely a nod to Sky Strikers; thefirst of several in today's countdown. And while Mystic Mine never became amust-run staple in Strikers last season you should still expect to see itin many of your Striker matchups moving forward.
#9 - Tenyi Spirit - Adhara
Lacking the flexibility of Tenyi Spirit – Vishuda, Tenyi Spirit – Adharastill managed to capture the Number 9 spot on our bestseller list todemonstrate perpetuating interest in the actual Tenyi theme. The fact thatit outsold Monk of the Tenyi, which is played in both dedicate Tenyi decksand the splashed engine is surprising, but Adhara beat out Monk in bothnumber of copies sold and the number of buyers that picked up at least one.The weeks of Tenyi enthusiasm filling the bulk of the Top 10 might be over,but you should still learn what the deck does because there are still lotsof people picking up the cards to give it a shot.
#8 - Crackdown
Crackdown might be the most interesting card on the list this week, sinceit's tied to so many underdog strategies in the new format. Altergeistslove it, and with Altergeists drawing lots of discussion both positive andskeptical in the wake of the latest F&L List this could indicaterenewed interest in the deck. It could also be popularized by True Dracos,or Subterrors, or a wealth of other solid strategies that have seentournament success before. Or the demand could be driven by the reveal ofthe Trap Trick reprint in the 2019 Gold Sarcophagus Tin.
There are lots of possibilities here and Crackdown's heavy sales this weekreally raise more questions than answers. What do you think the demandindicates? Did you pick up copies this week? Let me know down in thecomments.
#7 - Sky Striker Ace - Raye
The demand for Sky Strikers shot through the roof this week as players gotserious about upcoming tournaments, and a wealth of reprints and rarityswaps were revealed in the 2019 Gold Sarcophagus Tins. Sky StrikerAce – Kagari, Sky Striker Ace – Hayate, Sky Striker Ace – Shizuku, and Rayeherself were all revealed as Secret Rares in early product openings fromthe World Championship weekend, while Sky Striker Mobilize - Engage! andSky Striker Mecha - Widow Anchor are confirmed as Ultra Rares. I've saidfor a while that Konami R&D seems to view Sky Strikers as a healthystrategy for several formats now, so it's no surprise to see another pushto make the deck more accessible.
Combined with the reveal of the three 2019 Gold Sarcophagus Tin World Premiere promos Cracking down on "Big Turn 1" decks and combostrategies, there's just every reason under the sun right now to play SkyStrikers. And given the strong sales for Mystic Mine, Raye and several morecards associated with the theme, it's safe to say players noticed.
#6 - Called by the Grave
While it won't stop the threat of Nibiru, Called by the Grave still answersalmost every other hand trap in the game, and it gets even more utility inthe Sky Striker matchup. It's still just as powerful as it was before, andit gets better with the release of every new card it can stop. The upcomingSecret Rare version in the Gold Sarc Tins is gorgeous, and that makes iteven more impressive that so many players decided to get their copies thisweek instead of waiting until the end of the month.
#5 - Guardragon Agarpain
One of the biggest questions of the new format is which strategy can bestabuse the Guardragon Link Monsters. The answer's probably Thunder Dragons,but regardless of where you stand there's no denying that in some form,Guardragons are going to be one of the biggest competitive influences overthe coming months. Guardragon Agarpain's ability to unleash a giant Dragonfrom your Extra Deck for free has proven to be one of the most devastatingeffects in Yu-Gi-Oh! today, and it's no surprise to see players snapping upcopies.
The Thunder Dragon threat's very real, and heading into tournaments thismonth it's one of the biggest strategies to side against.
#4 - Tenyi Spirit - Vishuda
We've spoken before about the splashable utility of Tenyi Spirit – Vishudaand Monk of the Tenyi, played together with other easy access "non-effectmonsters" like Link Spider in combo-driven strategies. And while we maystill be missing some key cards for the OCG's Dragon Link deck – whereVishuda's fairly common – that hasn't slowed the interest in Vishuda as aflexible combo component and killer spot removal. This card's very good ataccomplishing two of the fundamentals of competitive Yu-Gi-Oh and lots ofplayers are buying their copies, so definitely don't discount it.
#3 - Guardragon Elpy
The bestseller list was a close race this week, as demonstrated by the factthat both Guardragon Elpy and Guardragon Agarpain made the Top 10sandwiching an unrelated card between them. Naturally both Guardragonswound up selling a similar number of copies – you'd almost never play onewithout the other – but Elpy happened to edge out Agarpain by a few dozencopies. Note that the less critical Guardragon Pisty almost made the Top 10as well, coming in at Number 12. Guardragons are incredibly hot right nowand a major concern for anyone heading to Regionals or YCS Portland.
#2 - White Howling
The final two slots this week both go to Sky Strikers. While some playersare interested in White Howling because they want to try it in Mermails,Marincess or Paleozoic Frogs, most of the discussion revolves around itsuse with Sky Striker Ace – Shizuku as a tech pick that can win the Strikermirror match (as well as lots of other relevant matchups). The more playersrunning Sky Strikers the better this card becomes in Sky Strikers as techfor the mirror, so its ouroboros -like presence coupled with such hugedemand is another clue that you're going to see a ton of Strikers in Augustand September.
#1 - Sky Striker Mecha - Shark Cannon
And finally the top selling card of the week was another future reprint inthe 2019 Gold Sarcphagus Tins. Shark Cannon's an interesting casebecause its Secret Rare version in Dark Saviors was its onlyprinting so far – it didn't appear inBattles of Legend: Hero's Revenge. On top of that the Tinreprint's a common. That means the original Secret Rare could become morevaluable over time, and that might have been part of the reason why buyershit it so hard this week. Rarity factor aside it's of course a must-run inmost eras of Sky Strikers, and it's commonly played in multiples.
Prepare to see lots of Sky Striker decks even now before the reprintsarrive.
What else was big this week? As mentioned before, Guardragon Pisty nearlymade the cut as did World Legacy Guardragon. A lot of players picked upsingle copies of Salamangreat Almiraj, Borreload eXcharge Dragon andPSY-Framelord Lambda too, so don't be surprised if Lambda actually seessome tournament play. Beyond that Hieratic Seal of the Heavenly Spheressold almost as well as the Guardragons it's often played with, andDragunity Knight – Romulus was back near the top thanks to its role in theOCG Dragon Link deck.
That's it for this week, but good luck to everybody at the UDS Invitationalin Indianapolis! The world is watching, and we'll have those deck lists inthe TCGplayer bit.ly/DeckArchive as soon as they're available Sunday andMonday.
See you next week!