Ancient Guardians arrives on store shelves today, and there's one theme that's way ahead of everything else in the set.
The Ogdoadic Reptile theme's getting a lot of player interest, in part because it can be played in different ways: Anthony showed us yesterday how to build it as a trap-heavy strategy with a mix of control moves and explosive damage plays, as well as a dedicated FTK build. Ogdoadics OTK by Summoning Phantasmal Lord Ultimitl Bishbaalkin, using its effect to flood the field with tokens, shoving it to your opponent with Geonator Transverser, and then targeting it with Number 33: Chronomaly Machu Mech to deal 8000 damage.
If you haven't seen it yet, check out all the details - and the builds - in Anthony's article.
Nothing gets Yu-Gi-Oh! players excited like fresh OTKs, so it's no surprise that Ogdoadics quickly took the lead over Ursarctic and Solfachord as the most-hyped new theme from Ancient Guardians. In fact, the difference is exponential: if you count Snake Rain, which the Ogdoadics use to set up in the graveyard, Ogoadics took all Top 10 best-selling slots when we look at Ancient Guardian singles in pre-sales.
Here's how it broke down.
I'm not sure anybody's playing Ogdoadic Calling, but the fact that it was the 10th most popular card from Ancient Guardians speaks to just how frantically people are buying up Ogdoadic cards. This card's first effect isn't tremendously useful as far as I'm aware, and its secondary effect is overkill in a deck that can just OTK if it gets that set up anyways. If it turns out OTKs aren't the way to go, maybe Ogdoadic Calling helps the deck struggle through its hand trap issues, but as it stands it feels like this was cart-filler for players who were already interested in more important Ogdoadic cards.
…Like this next one!
Aron, the Ogdoadic King features in Ogdoadic decks, seemingly the ones that aren't looking to FTK, and it's a solid one-of that that offers another Level 8 body you can Special Summon. It's overall pretty similar in function to the Number 8 best-seller coming up next.
Amunessia, the Ogdoadic Queen is a little different from the Aron, the Ogdoadic King, but there's a lot of overlap amongst these cards. The Ogdoadic deck has four different Level 8 monsters that form the base of their high-Rank Xyz Summons, and they each have similar Special Summoning mechanics that revive them from the graveyard. You can Special Summon the King and Queen for two Tributes, while the other two Level 8s revive for one tribute each but also give your opponent a free card in the process. The big value prop for the King and Queen are their suppressive effects, helping you limit your opponent's searches and Graveyard summons.
Both of those cheaper Level 8s made the Top 10 as well, starting with…
For one tribute you can Special Summon Aleirtt, the Ogdoadic Dark from your graveyard, but to do so you have to let your opponent grab a monster from their graveyard and add it to their hand. You can read these core eight cards and see the obvious synergies between them, feeding each other's effects and tributes.
Ogdoabyss, the Ogdoadic Overlord is the big boss monster of the Ogdoadic theme, hitting the field for an even higher cost of three Tributes but offering a really solid board wipe effect that operates at Spell Speed 2. It's a Level 10, so it doesn't feed your Rank 8 plays, but it's a high-impact card that adds another layer of disruption on your opponent's turn, and adds yet another win condition to the Ogdoadic strategy.
The most popular of the Level 8 Ogdoadics in presales, Keurse, the Ogdoadic Light plays a lot like Aleirtt, the Ogdoadic Dark, hitting the field for one tribute and feeding your opponent a Special Summon (whatever your opponent summons has its effects negated, but can still be used as tribute, material, or a good old fashioned beatstick).
While Aleirtt, the Ogdoadic Dark returns banished monsters to your graveyard, Keurse, the Ogdoadic Light will revive one of your Level 4 Ogdoadics, without any restrictions on their effects. It's immensely powerful and while all the Ogdoadics are important, the sheer gall of this one is impressive.
This card basically says, "If you've played Snake Rain, Foolish Burial another Reptile and then Monster Reborn it." It's searchable for free with Nauya, the Ogdoadic Remnant, and at the very least it's a staple at three for the FTK builds.
Nauya, the Ogdoadic Remnant and Nunu, the Ogdoadic Remnant are the backbone starter cards of the Ogdoadic strategy. Both cards drop from your hand to Foolish Burial a Light or a Dark Reptile from your deck, and both have powerful extra abilities: Nauya, the Ogdoadic Remnant searches you an Ogdoadic support card when it's Normal or Special Summoned, while Nunu, the Ogdoadic Remnant can revive itself from the graveyard. With Ogdoadics the biggest theme by far from Ancient Guardians, it's no surprise to see the theme's universal three-ofs in the Number 2 and Number 3 best-selling positions.
And finally, that leaves…
Snake Rain was never reprinted after it first appeared in Tactical Evolution. In the fourteen years since, we've seen repeated buyouts and prices that have gone all over the place, as speculators continually snapped up dozens of copies any time it seemed as if a Reptiles might become competitive.
They basically never were: Snake Rain is one of the Yu-Gi-Oh secondary market's most memed cards of all time, and while lots of buyers have stocked up on it over the years, almost nobody was buying it because they actually wanted to play the card. The demand was always created by hopeful investors, who would buy dozens of copies, drive up the price, and then routinely sell them off again once the latest Reptile theme turned out to be awful.
That makes it a bit of a mixed bag as a marquee reprint in Ancient Guardians. On one hand, this was the best-selling card of ANGU presales. On the other, now that Snake Rain so easy to get the investor appeal has evaporated, leaving everything pinned on Ogdoadics. Since the sheer number of individuals buying Snake Rain greatly outpaces the number of people buying the top Ogdoadic cards, it looks like a fair amount of the demand is from people who don't actually intend to play the card.
Still, this card never should have been expensive, and now it never will be. We're all in wait-and-see mode, counting down the days to the Remote Duel Invitational Qualifier next weekend to see if Ogdoadics can make an impact.
What else was big on TCGplayer this week? Mostly more Ogdoadics. Skull Meister finished at Number 11, still relevant and seeing play in tournaments. Zohah, the Ogdoadic Boundless, Flogos, the Ogdoadic Boundless, and Ogdoadic Origin came in at Numbers 12, 13, and 14 respectively. And finally, DoSolfachord Cutia finished at Number 15, suggesting Solfachords may not be waifu material in the eyes of the most eager collectors.
Stick with us through the weekend, as we bring you an in-depth look at spotlight decks from the Latin American Remote Duel Invitational, for the first time ever! Even with in-person OP delayed, competition marches on.