Leverett set three and passed to get things started.
Johnson drew two Upstart Goblins, Mathematician, Sinister Shadow Games, Shaddoll Falco, and Vanity's Emptiness. He Normal Summoned Mathematician to send Shaddoll Squamata to the graveyard, which sent a Shaddoll Falco to set itself face-down. Mathematician declared an attack for 1500. In Main Phase 2 he used both Upstarts to draw two Kuribandits. He set his traps and ended his turn.
Leverett thought for a while. Eventually he Normal Summoned Tour Guide From the Underworld, but Johnson flipped Vanity's Emptiness. Guide attacked the face-down Shaddoll Falco, but Johnson responded with Sinister Shadow Games to send Shaddoll Beast to the graveyard, which got him a Solemn Warning. Vanity's Emptiness went to the graveyard. The attack continued, Leverett took 400 damage, and Shaddoll Falco Special Summoned Beast face-down. During the End Phase Leverett used Phoenix Wing Wind Blast on Shaddoll Beast discarding Graff, Malebranche of the Burning Abyss, which Special Summoned a Scarm, Malebranche of the Burning Abyss which destroyed itself. Then he added Graff, Malebranche of the Burning Abyss to his hand.
Johnson drew the Beast. He Normal Summoned Kuribandit. In the Battle Phase Mathematician attacked over Guide, Shaddoll Falco attacked and Leverett used Karma Cut discarding Graff, Malebranche of the Burning Abyss to banish Kuribandit. The Graff, Malebranche of the Burning Abyss got Scarm, Malebranche of the Burning Abyss, and Johnson set one before passing.
Leverett Normal Summoned Cir, Malebranche of the Burning Abyss. It attacked over Shaddoll Falco to put Johnson to 7000 Life Points. He set one and ended.
Johnson drew Sinister Shadow Games. He Normal Summoned Kuribandit, set Shadow Games, and in the End Phase used Kuribandit to excavate the cards pictured. He added Super Polymerization and popped Phoenix Wing Wind Blast with Shaddoll Dragon.
Leverett drew and passed.
Johnson drew Shaddoll Hedgehog. He set Shaddoll Hedgehog and Super Polymerization.
Leverett attacked the face-down Shaddoll Hedgehog with Cir, Malebranche of the Burning Abyss, and the Shaddoll Hedgehog added Shaddoll Fusion to Johnson's hand. He passed.
Johnson drew Mathematician. He thought over the many plays he had at his disposal, and then used Shaddoll Fusion pitching Shaddoll Beast and Shaddoll Falco for El Shaddoll Winda. Shaddoll Falco set itself face-down and Beast nabbed him another Beast. He then Normal Summoned Mathematician and used its effect to send Shaddoll Hedgehog to the graveyard to add Shaddoll Squamata to his hand.
Johnson attacked attacked Cir with El Shaddoll Winda, but Leverett responded with Karma Cut discarding another Cir to banish the attacker! Johnson used Solemn Warning to stop the discarded Cir's effect. Still in the Battle Phase, Johnson used Super Polymerization discarding Shaddoll Squamata to send Scarm and Falco to the graveyard for another Winda. The latter attacked over Cir and Mathematician attacked directly for 1500. In the End Phase Leverett searched for Graff.
Leverett drew to three cards in hand, staring down a huge field. Johnson repeatedly exclaimed that he knew Leverett had Shaddoll Fusion in his hand, but he just set one monster and passed.
Johnson drew Vanity's Emptiness. El Shaddoll Winda attacked a face-down Shaddoll Dragon which bounced it to the Extra Deck, and then both Mathematicians dropped Leverett 1000 Life Points. Johnson set Vanity's Emptiness and ended his turn.
Leverett set a monster and a backrow.
Johnson drew another Vanity's Emptiness. Mathematician attacked a face-down Graff, Malebranche of the Burning Abyss. In Main Phase 2 he switched the other Mathematician to defense position and then tribute set the other for Shaddoll Beast. He then set Vanity's Emptiness, and followed it up with a Shaddoll Beast to net him a Pot of Duality. He used it to add Black Luster Soldier - Envoy of the Beginning to his hand.
Leverett used Upstart Goblin to draw a card. He set a backrow and ended.
Johnson drew Chaos Sorcerer. He Special Summoned Solider and was met with Karma Cut. Next he flipped Shaddoll Beast and that was all Leverett needed to see to dive into his Side Deck. That was a long Game 1, and this could still drag out another two games depending on the players hands. Only time will tell what comes out on top: Shaddolls or Burning Abyss with Shaddoll tech!
Leverett chose to go first. He passed.
Johnson opened with Pot of Duality, Vanity's Emptiness, Shaddoll Dragon, Soul Charge, and two Shaddoll Beast. He used Duality to add Mathematician to his hand, which he then Normal Summoned to send Shaddoll Squamata and then Beast to his graveyard. That got him a Mystical Space Typhoon. He attacked for 1500 direct, set Vanity's Emptiness, and passed.
Leverett used The Monarchs Stormforth. That got him a Majesty's Fiend and it hit for 2400 damage direct.
Johnson drew another Mystical Space Typhoon. He used Soul Charge to bring back Shaddoll Squamata and Shaddoll Beast. Next, he tributed his Shaddoll Squamata for another Beast, and then overlaid both Beasts for Number 61: Volcasaurus. He set two Mystical Space Typhoons and passed.
Leverett used Shaddoll Fusion, but Johnson chained Vanity's Emptiness! He set a monster and a backrow and ended. In the End Phase Johnson used Mystical Space Typhoon to destroy Karma Cut.
Johnson drew Breakthrough Skill and attacked over Shaddoll Dragon with Volcasaurus. In Main Phase 2 he set Breakthrough and ended his turn.
Johnson drew Super Polymerization! He asked for Leverett's Life Points - which were at 6500. Volcasaurus attacked over Majesty's Fiend and he passed.
Leverett sighed. He revealed Cir in hand to Special Summon it. He then Normal Summoned Graff, Malebranche of the Burning Abyss and overlaid then both for Ghostrick Alucard. It detached Graff, Malebranche of the Burning Abyss to destroy Breakthrough Skill, and Scarm, Malebranche of the Burning Abyss was Special Summoned from and destroyed. He then Special Summoned Black Luster Soldier - Envoy of the Beginning and Johnson scooped up his cards! There's five minutes left in the round, and these duelists are going into Game 3!
Johnson opted to go second. Leverett used Mathematician to send Graff, Malebranche of the Burning Abyss and that Special Summoned Scram which destroyed itself. He set two and in the End Phase searched Tour Guide From the Underworld.
Johnson Normal Summoned Mathematician to send Shaddoll Squamata and Beast to the graveyard. (Majest'ys and Storeforth). He used Allure of Darkness to draw two cards and banish Shaddoll Squamata. Mathematician attacked Mathematician, and both players drew a card. Johnson set two Mystical Space Typhoons to his backrow.
Leverett Normal Summoned Mathematician to send Graff, Malebranche of the Burning Abyss and get Scarm, Malebranche of the Burning Abyss again, and then poked for 1500. He passed and searched Cir, Malebranche of the Burning Abyss.
Johnson used two Mystical Space Typhoons to destroy Vanity's Emptiness and another Mystical Space Typhoon. He then used Duality to add Super Polymerization to his hand. He used The Monarchs Stormforth to Normal Summon Majesty's Fiend and he attacked directly, set Rivalry of Warlords, and passed.
Leverett set a monster and a backrow.
Johnson set Shaddoll Falco and attacked over a Scarm, Malebranche of the Burning Abyss with Majesty's Fiend. He set Super Polymerization but it was hit with an Mystical Space Typhoon.
Leverett set a backrow.
Johnson attacked with Majesty's Fiend. He set Breakthrough Skill and ended his turn.
Leverett set a monster.
Johnson attacked over a Tour Guide From the Underworld with Majesty's Fiend.
Leverett set a backrow and a monster.
Johnson attacked over a Cir, Malebranche of the Burning Abyss with Majesty's Fiend.
Leverett set a backrow.
Majesty's Fiend attacked directly but Leverett used Phoenix Wing Wind Blast to put it back on top of the deck. In Main Phase 2 he used Pot of Duality to add Majesty's Fiend to his hand. Time was called in the round, and Leverett was at 3200 to Johnson's 6500 Life Points.
Leverett Normal Summoned Tour Guide From the Underworld and Johnson used Effect Veiler. Guide attack a Shaddoll Falco which set Beast.
Johnson flipped Beast and discarded Shaddoll Fusion after drawing two cards. Leverett used Vanity's Emptiness. Johnson used Mystical Space Typhoon to destroy a backrow and Vanity's Emptiness went down. Johnson Tribute Summoned Shaddoll Falco for Shaddoll Beast, and then overlaid his monsters for Artifact Durendal, Special Summoned Black Luster Soldier - Envoy of the Beginning, and then Leverett scooped again!
It was a bloody match that ended in time between two amazing players, but at the end of the day Desmond Johnson overcame Zachary Leverett! Could Johnson be our eventual winner? Would his decision not to split pay off? He just might get there, but we'll have to wait to find out.