Let's start with two of the highlights.
Majespecter Tempest is the best of the Majespecter removal cards. One part Solemn Warning and one part Divine Wrath, it's a hard out to virtually anything your opponent can do with a monster, short of attacking. And perhaps more importantly, there's no Black Horn of Heaven-style handicaps going on here: Majespecter Tempest reads that it negates the Summon of "a monster(s)" as per its effect text, which means it can shut down a multi-monster Pendulum Summon.
That's going to be tremendously relevant moving forward, winning mirror matches and trouncing Performages, Igknights, and Pendulum Magicians. It's the one Majespecter removal card that doesn't target, too, hugely relevant in the Kozmo match-up and the mirror. And remember, you're searching this card for free, so you'll see it all the time. And whatever you Tribute comes back off a Pendulum Summon and then searches you another card.
Majespecter Tornado's really powerful too, banishing a monster of your choice and functioning as a Spell Speed 2 out to almost any monster threat. Because Tornado banishes it's very solid against Pendulum Monsters, and a good deal of its worth lies in its flexibility. Since there's no trigger required to activate it, you can chain Majespeter Tornado to whatever you want, play it in any phase, and outmaneuver your opponent.
There's not much to say about a card this simple and powerful. The fact that it might not make the cut as a three-of is just testament to the fact that the rest of the Majespecter cards are so freaking good. I have no idea why this was an Ultra Rare and Majespecter Tempest was a Common. People never seem to give Konami credit for the times they decide to go easy on player's wallets, but this is definitely one of those cases.
I was right with this card until the ending bit where you banish the monster. So close!
So to recap, the idea here is that Frightfur Sabre-Tooth and Frightfur Chimera are awesome, but kind of hard to Summon. Both hit the field at 2800 ATK total, so the one you choose really just has to do with the state of the field: you'll grab Chimera if you want to steal an opposing monster, and you'll opt for Sabretooth instead if you control other attackers and want its ATK bonus.
I'm not really sure why Frightfur March needed to banish the monster it Special Summons. The Solemn Judgment level of range on the negation effect makes it playable as a protective card on your opponent's turn, and a sort of Wiretap For Spells And Traps on yours, but many themes are going to play lots of removal tricks that don't target your Frightfurs anyways. I guess the real asset here is that you don't have to send your targeted Frightfur to the graveyard; you can just play Frightfur March as a very narrow negation trick. But outside of the Majespecter match-up with their wealth of targeting effects, I'm not convinced that's worthwhile.
Frightfur Sabre-Tooth is a great card for the Fluffal strategy, so it's a Little Disappointing that the rest of the Fluffal and Frightfur support seems to just miss the cut for tournament play. Frightfur March is so close to being playable you can taste it, and then right at that last line it turns to ashes in your mouth.
Super Soldier Shield isn't a hugely compelling card for much the same reason; lots of removal effects just don't target these days, especially with Storming Mirror Force on the rise. That said you get to use this thing twice if you control Gateway to Chaos, which you probably will since it's essentially free or better the moment it resolves, and at the same time it's not worth your opponent's 1-for-1 removal. I could see running a copy of this to chase off stuff like Effect Veiler.
I don't know as I'd want to run more than one, since one copy covers you from two threats and you're not really guaranteed to ever need a third activation, but as a one-of there's an argument to be made here.
I can't actually imagine playing the original Black Luster Soldier in a Black Luster Soldier – Super Soldier deck, nor Envoy of the Evening Twilight, so Super Soldier Rebirth seems pretty useless. If you direly needed to reuse Super Soldier or Black Luster Soldier - Envoy of the Beginning, The Warrior Returning Alive is faster and The Transmigration Prophecy is a more flexible card with more combo potential.
I don't think I'd run any of those cards anyways, but yeah. I guess you can make an immediate attack with whatever you Summon to steal wins, but that's a tremendously conditional situation and frankly just a bad way to Yu-Gi-Oh.
Dark Contract With Errors is cooler than it looks. It's basically a Royal Decree that only works when you control a D/D monster, but it works only when you want it to. So while it can negate your own cards, you can play around that by just not activating its effect when you want them to remain functional.
Searchable with some of the new D/D cards, Errors' rel="https://yugioh.tcgplayer.com/db/WP-CH.asp?CN=Dark Contract with Errors">Dark Contract with Errors doesn't need to stick around long to win you the game – D/D/D monsters hit hard and fast, and a one-sided Royal Decree can easily win you the game in two turns. It's a good card.
The defensive effect of D/D/D Contract Change is a poor answer to your opponent's aggression, giving up card economy on a direct attack or requiring you to have a monster on the field and a D/D/D monster in the graveyard to break even.
As a search card it gets you nothing but D/D Savant Kepler, and only works when your opponent attacks. It's really awful.
Graydle Split is like a Kunai with Chain, if Kunai with Chain was made out of nightmares and tape worms. Am I the only person who thinks the art's kind of terrifying?
If not, imagine it burrowing under the skin of your arms and get back to me.
When you first activate Graydle Split it can be a small ATK bonus – perhaps enough to disrupt your opponent's plans if they were going to swing over your Graydle Eagle, or a non-Graydle monster. Notice that you can play it on non-Graydles just fine. Once you hit your Main Phase you can then ditch the monster and Graydle Split, to Special Summon two Graydles – likely Graydle Slime and a Level 3 so you can make Graydle Dragon.
That's pretty good, especially if you cheat the intended cost by destroying a self-replacing monster or a Token. Even as a 2-for-2 it's worthwhile, since Graydle Dragon hits the field and destroys two cards with its effect for a +1 total. It's actually a tremendously important support card for the Graydle theme.
Graydle Parasite lets you sit back and ward off attacks on your opponent's turn, then capitalize when you clear the field with Graydle Dragon and make a direct attack. While both scenarios are conditional, they're common enough that Parasite can put in a lot of work over time, and it's nice that the two effects are basically phrased as "If you're losing," and "If you're winning" respectively. That helps ensure utility.
Even if you're in a situation where neither of its effects are useful, Parasite's still a Continuous Graydle card that you can send to the graveyard to Special Summon Graydle Slime. It's swingy and it kind of inconsistent, but it's actually solid.
Pendulum Area could be a powerful card depending on what your metagame looks like. If you're playing an all-Pendulum deck and your opponents are largely running non-Pendulum themes, it's golden. If everybody you're coming up against is playing Pendulums, it's not very good. It's very specific, but it's similar to stuff like Non-Fusion Area, and we've seen that card in the highest echelons of Championship-level play several times before.
The easier it is for you to replace your destroyed Pendulum Scales, the easier it is to use Pendulum Area. It's right in Majespecters' wheelhouse, since they search so many monsters and can replace cards so easily. Igknights might play it really well too, though it'll depend on how the deck's commonly built in the new format and how many extra cards they'll have kicking around on any given turn.
We've seen cards like this in previous releases, and we know they have a niche in competitive play. To me this card's role is clear, and it's definitely worth picking up a few copies as a future Side Deck pick.
I'm going to go out on a limb and say that Blazing Mirror Force could wind up being a better card than people are giving it credit for. It's kind of widely acknowledged that the new format's going to be characterized in part by a "stun you for one turn, get in my shots" kind of approach in a lot of match-ups, largely because it's so difficult to permanently remove swarms of Pendulum Monsters all at once. And while Storming Mirror Force is a more dependable card for sheer removal – it can shatter Xyz, Synchros, and Fusions en masse, even if they have protection effects, and it's better against the self-replacing Kozmo starships – there's an interesting proposition of pacing and opportunity in Blazing Mirror Force that might have potential in the right strategies.
On one hand, the card's tough to play because it won't counter certain threats as well as Storming Mirror Force. Kozmos are a huge concern, and you can't ignore that this card can kill you; the damage effect tries to beat you out of the game before it ever takes a shot at your opponent's Life Points. And yet, I can't help but feel that refuting your opponent's attack and burning them for several thousand damage is probably going to open the door for game-winning follow-ups in the right places.
Under specific metagame conditions, Blazing Mirror Force might be a great sleeper pick. Will we see those conditions? Only time will tell. For now, a healthy dose of skepticism tempered by a keen eye for opportunity is likely the best policy. And grabbing these once they're cheap – if they ever get cheaper than they are now – might be a good idea.
First-Aid Squad's a new spin on the "second effect from the graveyard" mechanic, offering a mid-game effect that can be valuable in a few different kinds of strategies, and a secondary function that can Block Attacks or put a solid amount of damage on the field to help close out a game. The big question is where to play it.
Gem-Knights don't really have room for it, and would often prefer to keep their Normal Monsters in the graveyard anyways. The ability to bring back a specific Gem-Knight so you can expand your range of Fusion Summons is tempting, but the deck's already so crammed with better cards that I don't see it having a role there.
Could it work in Pendulum Decks that revolve around Normal Pendulum Monsters? Possibly. While those monsters wouldn't normally go the graveyard anyways, they will if you overlay them for Xyz Summons. If we accept that First-Aid Squad could be useful in that kind of strategy then it at the very least, it has a specific role in a very niche number of currently casual strategies. Your Normal Monster doesn't need to hit the graveyard for you to cash in on First-Aid Squad's effect: it just needs to be destroyed. That lets you activate it even if your opponent's just attacking over a Pendulum Monster.
It might also see play in Gemini strategies if they ever take off. The biggest problem there is that most decks playing Gemini monsters only splash a couple, and have easy access to recursive effects like Call Of The Haunted (played specifically to allow the immediate Gemini Summon of a fallen Gemini Monster). Giga-Plant comes to mind. I feel like that's a no-go since such strategies don't have enough Normal Monsters to make First-Aid Squad viable, and have better options in general.
It's a neat card and it's very unique, but the spread of decks that can run it are so narrow – and its activation conditions so specific – that I doubt it'll ever see play. It's interesting all the same, though.
I have no idea where Urgent Ritual Art could actually be useful. I guess it lets you play around stuff like Naturia Beast and Spell Canceler if your opponent tries to lock you out of your Ritual Spells? But those threats are nowhere near prevalent enough to make this thing worth your while. We'd need to see a Nekroz-level Ritual threat again for that to be a concern, and I doubt we're going to see that happen for a very, very long time.
Even then, we know Archfiend Eccentrick's a far more flexible answer to those types of cards anyways, since we saw Nekroz Main and Side Deck it this past format to out those monsters.
On a different note, the rarity here is just inexplicable. People are going to buy boxes of DOCS, open this as their Secret Rare, and never buy boxes ever again.
In a set characterized in part by overly-complicated cards that just aren't relevant, Grand Horn of Heaven's an amazing card that's well tuned to the trajectory of tournament play. With Black Horn of Heaven officially clarified as only affecting the Summon of one monster, unable to stop multi-monster Pendulum Summons, Grand Horn's the card you want Black Horn of Heaven to be as we head into what many are calling the Pendulum era. Majespecters have Majespecter Tempest, but for everybody else there's this thing. Negating your opponent's Pendulum Summon hurls their Pendulum Monsters into the graveyard, costing them tremendous momentum.
Giving your opponent a free draw is a small price to pay to shield yourself from attacks; demolish infrastructure they may have worked several turns to build; and potentially strand them with nothing on the field. Your opponent retains their Normal Summon, but Grand Horn of Heaven's effect to end your opponent's Main Phase can wind up robbing them of their Normal Summon anyways; if you push them into their Battle Phase before they Normal Summon their attacks will be limited or non-existent, and flipping Grand Horn in Main Phase 2 effectively ends their turn. That deprives them of Normal Summons, further Special Summons, and the ability to set anything they wanted to defend themselves with.
That's huge. This card would've been worth running if it just negated an attempted Special Summon the way it does. But the way it forces your opponent to sequence their turn in fear of ending their Main Phase is tremendous. More practiced players will play around the risk of Grand Horn more effectively, and if this card sees significant play it's going to be one of the factors creating a skill gap to reward more serious competitors moving forward.
Is it a -2? I've seen that argument, as if losing a mitt full of Pendulum Monsters is no real loss. That view seems to ignore a lot of perspectives though, important points like "it wins you games" and "sometimes your opponent Pendulum Summons from their hand." Grand Horn of Heaven can be a -1 or a break even 2-for-2 against Synchro Summons and Xyz, and it's especially good with Masked HERO Dark Law, since your opponents eats a minus the moment they draw. If Pendulums wind up being as popular as many are expecting then this card gets really good, really fast. I still can't believe it's a common. There's a version of Dimension of Chaos with a different foil distribution that's just vastly more purchasable than the actual release.
Urgent Ritual Art: Secret Rare. This thing: common.
Tomorrow we'll wrap up our Giant Set Review, as we look at the last twenty cards in Dimension of Chaos – that's the OCG imports and the all-new World Premieres! The back end of the release has some of the best cards that will instantly make an impact on tournaments, so don't miss it.