Every booster set comes with its ups and downs, not just for the competitive hivemind but for individual duelists, too. Sometimes, no matter how good a card could be for this deck or that playerbase, you as an individual duelist literally couldn't care less. It doesn't matter how much hype there is, how much competitive success the deck has in the OCG, or how pricy it's going to be… you just don't care.
Trust me, I get it.
If I said I was excited about every card that came out I'd be lying to you - you're not going to get jazzed about every theme, every rogue pick, every niche counter to a big deck. Yu-Gi-Oh's huge; it's a case of different strokes for different folks, and no one has the brain power nor the mental energy to really get invested in everything the game has to offer.
Last week I wrote about cards that everyone wants to get their hands on, but keep in mind that Top 10 list left out 90% of Rise of the Duelist. I can confidently say Infernoble Knight Emperor Charles will be a hot card as long as Noble Knights continue to exist, sure, but I like to live off the beaten path. Some people get excited about the most random things.
That's me. I'm some people.
My point is, I'm excited for Artillery Catapult Turtle because it Special Summons both Hieratic Dragon of Eset and Hieratic Dragon of Nebthet.
Below are ten cards I want and have good uses for, and even if you're not 100% stoked on them yet, maybe this'll get your creative juices flowing!
Starting off this rogue list is a card that can actually see play, unlike my grasping at straws with Hieratics. What piqued my interest first about Odd-Eyes Revolution Dragon is the fact it actually has good effects as a Pendulum Spell and as a Monster. While it's no Chaos Emperor, the Dragon of Armageddon, a card I wrote about here , it's a pleasant surprise that a variety of decks can profit off of one or both of Odd-Eyes Revolution Dragon's effects.
If you're playing a Dragon deck that pumps out big Dragon monsters, feel free to treat this thing as a spell and ignore that it's technically a monster. For the low cost of destroying itself, Odd-Eyes Revolution Dragon revives a Dragon Synchro, Xyz, or Fusion Monster. Yeah, it's basically Monster Reborn. If you're playing a bunch of Dragons in your deck as well, its Pendulum restriction is negligible – you'll summon a bunch of Dragons from your hand, then Summon another one from your graveyard.
I'm not sure about you, but I'm fine with a Scale 12 monster that revives my big baddies.
Secondly its monster effects are abundant, and while they're a bit random, they can function together or independently. If you don't want to actually field Odd-Eyes Revolution Dragon, that's fine – you can discard it to search a Dragon Pendulum monster, including Chaos Emperor, the Dragon of Armageddon. Want to OTK with it? You're halfway there with its ability to boost its own ATK. Need to recharge your graveyard or clear your opponent's field? Or both? Congrats, Odd-Eyes Revolution Dragon is like a weird combination of Fiber Jar and Exodius the Ultimate Forbidden Lord.
Even if Odd-Eyes Revolution Dragon only had one useful effect, I'd still sing its praises. It's hard to go wrong with a card that can do so much.
The circle is complete… well, sort of. If you include the Archnemeses cards, we now officially have a Nemeses monsters for all the attributes (except Divine). That being said, I wouldn't hold your breath for a Divine Nemeses monster. But I suppose anything's possible, right?
The low-Level Nemeses monsters are pretty easy to understand and use - shuffle a banished monster to Special Summon each one, then get some bonus utility out of your on-field Nemeses: search a Nemeses, get a yarded Nemeses back, and so on. Nemeses Keystone instead retrieves itself after being banished, meaning you really only have to play one copy to use it over and over again.
Is that revolutionary? No, but having another Nemeses monster to round out the theme is an added bonus to the fact you don't need to clog your deck with extra copies. Nemeses Flag and Nemeses Umbrella take up enough space, so I appreciate that the theme's continuation doesn't bloat your deck.
The main point I focused on is Nemeses Keystone as a Level 1 monster. Why's that relevant? Block Dragon, the card that's probably been the bane of your existence since Adamancipators came into being. More often than not, Block Dragon searched two Level 4 monsters when it was removed from the field, or perhaps 2 Level 1s and a Level 4. Point is, odd Levels have rarely been the target for Block Dragon.
But now we'll have a Level 1 Rock that isn't totally useless and needs no real setup! Previously, the best Level 1 Rock monster was Gem-Knight Lazuli, which offered little to no synergy without diving deep into Gem-Knights.
I have similar thoughts on Mathmech Diameter as I had about Code Generator when I wrote about it shortly after Toon Chaos's release. It seems like every set, we get more and more generic Cyberse cards that work in a plethora of Cyberse-adjacent strategies.
Sure, Mathmech Diameter's a tad restrictive - you can only Summon Level 4 Cyberse monsters, and the built-in negation ability only works when using Mathmechs. But it's leaps and bounds above other generic tuners that have seen play. Keep in mind, Rose, Warrior of Revenge and X-Saber Palomuro saw play because of their Warrior and Reptile-types, so at a bare minimum Mathmech Diameter's as good as other cards that have seen competitive table time.
You just can't ignore a tuner that summons other monsters for an instant boss monster. Worst case scenario, you could make Chaos Ruler, the Chaotic Magical Dragon or Crystron Halqifibrax.
So while Mathmech Diameter may not blow you away and have you crying tears of joy, it's utility cards like these that pop up in strategies down the line. It checks so many boxes as a Light Level 4 Cyberse tuner, but throw in the bonus effects, and it fills a void I didn't know we had.
A lot of on-theme Link Monsters work best in either the early game or late game, but Superheavy Samurai Scarecrow is always useful for its strategy. Need to revive a Superheavy Samurai monster? Do you play Superheavy Samurai monsters? If you answered yes to both those questions, Superheavy Samurai Scarecrow turns any card in your hand into a Monster Reborn for Superheavy Samurais.
But since it's worded like Lumina, Lightsworn Summoner, any monster you pitch can be Special Summoned as well. And since any Superheavy Samurai Scarecrow is made from any Superheavy Samurai monster, it's about as generic as you can get for the theme.
There's two sides to this card, but they both circle around to the same effect. In short, both competitives and casuals alike will love Koa'ki Meiru Supplier, and it could easily have worked in last week's article about cards that everyone wants.
Any time we have monsters that replace other monsters on the field, you know the card's ripe for combos. If a face-up Rock monster's sent to your graveyard - yes, Rock, not Koa'ki Meiru - you'll Special summon Koa'ki Meiru Supplier from your hand as a Level 4 body. That's obviously great because combo decks are constantly looking for ways to summon more monsters from the hand.
If you look at some of the on-theme Koa'ki Meiru Rocks – cards like Koa'ki Meiru Guardian, Koa'ki Meiru Sandman, Koa'ki Meiru Wall, and Koa'ki Meiru Overload – Koa'ki Meiru Supplier triggers when you have to throw one of those away for its own effect as a self-replacer. But only for those Koa'ki Meiru monsters, not all Koa'ki Meiru monsters.
Konami, you ain't slick.
It's no secret that the card works fantastically with Adampancipators - whether you'll use it as a Block Dragon search target, the Xyz Summon of Gallant Granite, or a Synchro Summon with the Adamancipator Tuners. Even its second effect can search Koa'ki Meiru Guardian, a card cropping up in Adamancipator decks as a counter to Nibiru, the Primal Being.
But, even if Koa'ki Meiru Supplier was designed so that it could fit seamlessly into Adamancipators, the ability to search more Koa'ki Meiru cards and not just Koa'ki Meiru Rock-types means the design is still faithful to the original theme. Koa'ki Meiru Supplier gets points for being competitively relevant while still helping out Koa'ki Meiru.
Darklords have been getting support for literally more than a decade, but it wasn't until a few years ago that the Darklord cards became strong or numerous enough to really be a serious deck. While I'm normally one to focus on boss monsters when I'm excited about a theme, Indulged Darklord is similar to Koa'ki Meiru Supplier; it works both on theme and off.
But first, don't just blow it off as a Darklord card - in fact, all the Darklord cards in Rise of the Duelist are useful, but Indulged Darklord is the most digestible and the most obviously practical. When it's Normal or Special Summoned, you'll search your deck for a Darklord monster to add to your hand and throw another one down on your opponent's side of the field.
Giving your opponent a Darklord isn't an awful thing because it'll probably end up in your graveyard soon enough. Yarding Darklords is effective, even if they're just banish fodder for Condemned Darklord or something to revive with Darklord Contact. If you want to get really cheeky, you'll control which monster you give your opponent, then combo with Darklord Descent and Darklord Ixchel to spam your field with Darklords on the first turn!
While Indulged Darklord as splashable and generic as Koa'ki Meiru Supplier, the only restriction is the condition of sticking to Fairy effects only. It may provide limited support as a splashable suite of cards for now, but with such a loose restriction, Indulged Darklord only has room to grow over time.
If you haven't quite picked up on it yet, the Gizmek cards are particularly good at having their way with monsters, specifically ones from the Extra Deck. Unlike the other niche effects of the various Gizmek monsters, Gizmek Okami, the Dreaded Deluge Dragon isn't pulling any punches. If your opponent has monsters from the Extra Deck, they can kiss them goodbye.
I'll admit, Gizmek Okami, the Dreaded Deluge Dragon's a weird card that works best when you're staring down big monsters, but you might as well think of Dark Hole, Interrupted Kaiju Slumber, Raigeki, Evilswarm Exciton Knight… those are some of the main board wipes, right?
Yes, Gizmek Okami, the Dreaded Deluge Dragon only hits Extra Deck monsters, but in terms of what you'll be facing, I'm saying it'll pop all of your opponent's monsters. So why use it over any of the aforementioned cards?
Because there aren't any requirements you won't already fulfilland you'll keep a monster around to combo with, or like a caveman from 2005, use Gizmek Okami, the Dreaded Deluge Dragon to attack. I was a huge fan of Interrupted Kaiju Slumber for a while, but I never wanted to draw my extra Kaijus. The same thing went for Dark Hole. That's swell and all, but I want a monster, too!
Gizmek Okami, the Dreaded Deluge Dragon won't be some universally abusable boss monster popping up in every deck, but as a board wipe at your fingertips that leaves you with a monster… it's another thing you'll have to respect on the competitive scene.
Hopefully your strategy's sustainable enough to weather Nibiru, the Primal Being, Dark Ruler No More, and Gizmek Okami, the Dreaded Deluge Dragon. If not… yikes.
Megaliths received tremendous hype when they were first announced, but the excitement quickly waned when the cards were released. I can say this as an absolute fan of the strategy - by themselves, Megaliths weren't enough to make a solid deck.
I wrote about Megaliths back in May, and let me issue the caveat that the deck can function if you lean on enough other cards. In that build alone I was running Block Dragon, Magician of Black Chaos MAX, Nekroz of Unicore and Deskbot 003 to make the strategy viable. So hear me when I say the deck has potential, but "pure" Megaliths have been a struggle since day one.
All that changes with Megalith Phul. Megaliths in a vacuum are quite resource intensive, requiring a Ritual Monster, Ritual fodder, and a way to Ritual Summon, but Megalith Phul either doubles up on those requirements or backs into them.
One criticism of Megalith Unformed is that you'll need to tribute multiple monsters or a high Level Megalith just to summon a Level 4 from your deck. Megalith Phul turns that on its head. Any of the Level 4 Megaliths now satisfy the requirements to summon Megalith Phul from the deck. But when Megalith Phul's Ritual Summoned, you'll grab the tributed Megalith monster and copy its Level, putting you on the road to more Ritual Summons.
On top of Megalith Unformed always being live, you'll also get another built-in Ritual effect. The Level 4 Rituals all act as a Ritual Summons and Ritual fodder once on the field, but each of them can only masquerade as a Ritual Spell once per turn. Megalith Phul is a fourth avenue for Ritual Summons, allowing more flexibility within the Megalith theme.
Lastly, Impcantation Penciplume gets about 900 times better. Of all the Impcantations that help Megaliths, Impcantation Penciplume's effect pulled the most weight. Searching and summoning from the deck wasn't a huge problem for Megaliths, but having resources to function after your first wave of Ritual Summons was a struggle that Impcantation Penciplume could barely mitigate.
As a Level 3, Impcantation Penciplume was always the odd card out; you had to play it, but it never met the requirements for any meaningful Megalith Summons. Since Megalith Phul's a Level 2, Impcantation Penciplume's now more than enough to Ritual Summon at least one of your Megaliths.
There are plenty of fishy things you can do with Lifeless Leaffish, but they all pale in comparison to the immediate access to Superancient Deepsea King Coelacanth it affords you. Just control a Level 4 alongside Lifeless Leaffish and send Superancient Deepsea King Coelacanth to the graveyard, make Number 60: Dugaress the Timeless, then revive Superancient Deepsea King Coelacanth and go off from there.
If you haven't figured it out yet, the only reason Lifeless Leaffish is in my Top 10 stems from my hidden obsession with Superancient Deepsea King Coelacanth.
For years I've been trying every weird combination in the book to play Superancient Deepsea King Coelacanth consistently, and now we finally have the perfect card for our big fishy friend. Even Lifeless Leaffish's second effect to recycle Fish matches up with Superancient Deepsea King Coelacanth's ability. You don't want to overload your deck with non-essential Fish, and Lifeless Leaffish lets you activate Superancient Deepsea King Coelacanth multiple times without breaking the bank.
Not to punt all the ranting and raving to Joseph, but his video covers many of the basic Superancient Deepsea King Coelacanth combos and a deck list in a very digestible way
Trust me, you aren't ready.
Sadly, Ancient Warriors have been all but forgotten since their release in Ignition Assault. The theme keys off a rich lore based on the historical novel Romance of the Three Kingdoms, a story that's equal parts history and mythology that has little to do with amorous love. To summarize the mythology, it's basically a tale of, "The enemy of my enemy is my friend… just kidding!"
If you've been a fan of the Ancient Warriors cards or even glanced at their effects, you've probably come away with two takeaways: "Hey, that could be good!" and "Well… now what?"
Most of the Ancient Warriors cards have effects that either search Ancient Warriors cards from the deck or graveyard, destroy a threat on the field, or have a weird kinda-sorta counter effect. The first two are great, but the third category is full of cards like Ancient Warriors - Graceful Zhou Gong, which stop an Effect Monster, but only when another Ancient Warriors activate an effect.
Ancient Warriors Oath - Double Dragon Lords, the ultimate in-story team-up, gives you something to spring off for a rebuttal. The various Ancient Warriors monsters, spells, and traps can stymie your opponent just fine, but Ancient Warriors Oath - Double Dragon Lords ties everything else together sending one of your cards to the graveyard, then bouncing one of your opponent's cards.
The bounce is great, and the fact you're sending a card to the graveyard and activating an Ancient Warriors' effect means you'll trigger other Ancient Warriors cards on your field. Stuff like Ancient Warriors Saga - Three Visits, Ancient Warriors Saga - Borrowing of Arrows, and Ancient Warriors - Masterful Sun Mou.
I'm curious to see what your rogue picks from Rise of the Duelist are - perhaps some new Gaia cards or an OCG import? Whatever they are, make sure to let me know on Twitter to continue the discussion!
Just remember: beat your opponents before they beat you.