Up until recently, there wasn't much buzz around Legendary Duelists: Season 2.
As reprint sets go, there aren't really any competitive staples for the current format. None of the decks the set supports have been competitive in years: Blue-Eyes White Dragon hasn't been a top table attraction for ages, and while Blackwings once won Championships, the Blackwing build of old - the deck that captured victory at SJC Orlando and SJC Indianapolis, back in 2009 - looks nothing like modern Blackwings.
What LDS2 does have is a BUNCH of incredible reprints for those fan-favorite strategies. If you've ever wanted to play Blue-Eyes, Blackwings, Harpies, Cyber Dragons, Trains, Rose Dragons or even Photons, but the high prices of certain cards were holding you back? There's a good chance those cards are here, back, and cheaper than ever.
The secondary market responded to those price drops in a big way, so let's take a look at the Top 10 best-selling cards from the Legendary Duelists: Season 2 presales.
Cyberload Fusion isn't a staple of Cyber Dragon strategies, and since it's repeatedly topped out at $35 in the past year, the sheer price of the card's likely kept a lot of players from trying it out. Now you can snag a copy for 5 bucks, so I think we'll be seeing lots of CyDra fans giving it a shot. Is it a win-more card? Maybe. Does it offer more firepower in an era where backrows are becoming heftier, and tougher to push through? It might. And at a fraction of what Cyberload Fusion once cost, it's tempting to test it and find out.
Blackwing Full Armor Master typically cost 20 to 25 dollars since mid-summer, one of several barriers to entry keeping casual Blackwing fans from playing the deck. Now it's going for as low as $2, and along with reprints like Blackwing - Simoon the Poison Wind, that price drop's making Blackwings way more affordable. The deck's now firmly in budget territory, well below $100.
If you missed Loukas' Phantom Rage Blackwings build from a few weeks ago, check it out and see what I mean; you can build it for less than 80 bucks, including the full Extra Deck.
Cyber Dragon Nachster follows a similar pattern; a staple of the Cyber Dragon strategy, you're almost always running one copy, and often as many as three. Cyber Dragon Nachster bounced between 10 dollars and 18 dollars ever since March, pricing a lot of players out of the CyDra strategy. Now it's less than 4 bucks, and that isn't just a big deal for right now; with Lightning Overdrive bringing cards like Lyna the Light Charmer, Shining, Cyber Dragons could get a shot in the arm by the time LIOV rolls around in May.
While Blackwing Full Armor Master usually a one-of, Blackwing - Simoon the Poison Wind effect is such a boost to the Blackwing deck's consistency that it's frequently played in threes. When Blackwing - Simoon the Poison Wind cost 20 bucks - which is where it was at several times this year - that was a problem. But now it's been pre-selling for about a dollar, and combined with Blackwing Full Armor Master reprint, the Blackwing deck now costs about half of what it would've cost a few weeks ago.
Earlier this year you could get copies of Harpie Perfumer for as little as $15, but it hit the $30 mark in September and crept to $35 in October. Now it's down to 4. Harpie Perfumer double search effect is so much easier to achieve now that we've got Cyber Slash Harpie Lady, and since most modern Harpie decks run multiple copies of Harpie Perfumer, the reprint is another case of massive savings for a fan-favorite deck that was too often priced out of competition.
Urgent Schedule spent a good chunk of the year in the 30 to 40 dollar range, coming out of the summer between $21 and $25. Now it's available for about 4 bucks, and suddenly the Train deck is a viable budget pick. Check out the build Loukas posted a few days ago. The Market Price for the entire build is $150, but $90 of that is Black Luster Soldier - Soldier of Chaos, an Extra Deck card you could just skip if you don't own a copy.
Trains are the ultimate meme deck in Yu-Gi-Oh, but at its core the strategy's really petty solid. In an era of massive branching combo strings, the Train deck largely functions the way you'd expect it to: drop big dudes, make a couple plays for burn damage and then unleash holy hell on your opponent with a locomotive beating. It's a pretty easy, entirely enjoyable deck, and now that it doesn't cost a bazillion dollars to build more players are going to try it out.
Speaking of expensive Train cards that aren't expensive anymore…
Back in the spring, Superdreadnought Rail Cannon Juggernaut Liebe was a 43-dollar card at its peak, and it took months for it to eventually fall below 20 dollars in November. The decline was short lived: Superdreadnought Rail Cannon Juggernaut Liebe was back up over $35 by the end of that month. But once the LDS2 reprint was revealed it all came tumbling down; Superdreadnought Rail Cannon Juggernaut Liebe now sits at a current price of about $3.50, leaving the Train core with nothing that costs more than 4 dollars.
One of the two new cards in a pack that's purely reprints otherwise, Blue-Eyes Abyss Dragon was undervalued when it first went on pre-sale, selling for less than $5. But the all-new incarnation of BEWD shot up to $16 last week, before settling between $13 and $14 for the rest of the presale period.
Packing strong synergy with cards like The White Stone of Ancients, Blue-Eyes Abyss Dragon is a powerful double search that can play into a Ritual Summon or a Fusion Summon, provided you can create the set-up needed to summon it, and turn its effects on. That graveyard ability's nothing to sneeze at either. In a theme that often feels narrow and short on decision trees, Blue-Eyes Abyss Dragon a breath of fresh air and a powerful new addition.
Holy wow! This card's price was as high as 65 to 70 dollars in the past year, commonly costing somewhere between $35 and $55. Now, on the very tail end of LDS2 presales,it's available for about 8 dollars. And I don't think it's finished dropping; while Photon Orbital largely a must for Photon decks, there just aren't many players interested in the strategy. That might change now that the card's more affordable, but I wouldn't be surprised if Photon Orbital drops below $5 by the time Season 2 is settled.
And finally, the other new card in the set was the hottest pre-seller of the week, as well as the Number 1 best-selling card in the TCGplayer Marketplace from ANY set, Galaxy-Eyes Afterglow Dragon. Stable over the last few days at 10 bucks a pop, Galaxy-Eyes Afterglow Dragon was pre-selling for half that price until buyers and sellers realized its potential. I personally haven't seen enough case break numbers to know if there are significant short prints in LDS2, but what I have seen hasn't suggested that this, or Blue-Eyes Abyss Dragon are shorted. We'll have to see where this thing is headed in the coming weeks.
Play-wise, Galaxy-Eyes Afterglow Dragon a simple Level 8 extender to support the Galaxy-Eyes deck's Xyz Summons. Played as an Xyz Material it effectively doubles the value your detach, presenting another attacker or more Xyz fodder, and even creating OTK's under the right conditions. It's a very cool card for a deck that desperately needs this kind of flexibility, and buyers are clearly seeing that.
Other big cards this week? Garden Rose Maiden almost made the Top 10 at Number 11, unsuspecting little victory machine that it is. Blue-Eyes Chaos Dragon and Galaxy-Eyes Photon Dragon came in at Numbers 12 and 13 respectively, nostalgia drove Harpie Lady Sisters to Number 14, and the locomotion continued with Super Express Bullet Train at Number 15.
Stick with us this weekend, because Zach and Loukas are both dropping articles covering more aspects of Legendary Duelists: Season 2. Get ready some offbeat analysis of the new set on Saturday, plus a bunch of cool deck lists on Sunday!
We'll see you then.