Lightning Overdrive is here!
With a wealth of legacy support for fan-favorite strategies, the new set seems poised to knock competitive Yu-Gi-Oh for a loop, switching things up well in advance of the F&L List changes we're expecting to see in July. A lot of this set's best, most competitive cards are low rarity, so the hype took a while to build, but players are starting to figure out how good LIOV is. The market's beginning to trend accordingly.
Today we're going to look at the biggest single cards from the last week of Lightning Overdrive presales: the biggest sellers so far have been a mix of fanservice cards in the bottom half of the Top 10, and more competitive highlights in the upper echelon. So without further ado, let me show you what I mean: here are the Top 10 best-selling cards from LIOV presales, by number of unique purchases here on TCGplayer.
Dark Infant @Ignister probably the best of the five new @Ignister and A.I. cards debuting in Lightning Overdrive. A Link 1 that searches Ignister A.I. Land, Dark Infant @Ignister sort of like Striker Dragon, if Boot Sector Launch cost 30 dollars. I think that's what makes Dark Infant @Ignister so surprising to see in the Number 10 spot: while Dark Infant @Ignister itself costs about a buck, the Field Spell it works with has been expensive ever since it debuted. I'm amazed there are enough dedicated, A.I. Land-owning Ignister fans to push this thing into the Top 10.
Does Dark Infant @Ignister make Ignisters a tournament contender? Probably not, but the Ignister deck DOES get a lot of great cards in this set to help it play for The Arrival Cyberse @Ignister, the theme's GIANT Link 6 boss. You and A.I. has a wealth of effects, all of which are useful, while A.I. Meet You is effectively A.I. Reinforcement of the Army. There's some good stuff here, and people are clearly interested in it.
The partnered Amazement and Attraction cards debut in Lightning Vortex, and we're probably going to see two different categories of decks running them: first, dedicated Amazement strategies running lots of Amazement and Attraction cards; and second, decks that splash Amazement Administrator Arlekino and a very slim lineup of support, because they already so many traps that Amazement Administrator Arlekino a good fit. Eldlich's going to be a popular option, as an example.
Amazement Attendant Comica probably won't see play in the splash builds, but her search effect makes her extremely important in more dedicated Amazement decks. Normal Summoning her to get a free Amaze Attraction Cyclo-Coaster or Amaze Attraction Horror House - which kind of look like Mystical Space Typhoon and Book of Moon if you play them right and squint your eyes - is pretty good, and the added flexibility to move cards around has its uses.
Amazement Attendant Comica going for about $2 right now, and it could prove to be way undervalued if Amazement is viable, even as a rogue pick.
Zexal Construction brings a surprising amount of range to Utopia decks, and perhaps more importantly functions as a searcher for any Rank-Up-Magic card you want. Shuffling away a card from your hand makes it a hard neg in card economy, but that seems almost necessary given the range of busted stuff that gets more consistent with this card. This isn't the only Zexal / Utopia support in the Top 10, either; three cards from the theme saw enough to make the cut.
This card does one job, but it's really, really good at it. Almost sort of a Lonefire Blossom for Witch of the Black Rose, Ruddy Rose Witch sets you up to summon Witch of the Black Rose, keep it on the field, and search your deck for any Level 3 or lower Plant, while filling your graveyard.
What was once a fun and cool, but very unplayable luck-driven card is now entirely reliable without forcing you to play it in a Monster Mash strategy, which isn't something we see all too often. Combined with the fact that Akiza's one of Yu-Gi-Oh's most popular characters, it's easy to see how Ruddy Rose Witch came in at Number 7.
Following up, Roxrose Dragon really cool, especially when it's searching Basal Rose Shoot. Just summon Roxrose Dragon, search Basal Rose Shoot, make a Synchro Summon, and next turn you can bring back Roxrose Dragon, get another Basal Rose Shoot, and just wash rinse and repeat.
Alternatively it can also grab Thorn of Malice, Blooming of the Darkest Rose, Blue Rose Dragon, Red Rose Dragon, or Ruddy Rose Witch. Naming snafus aside, the new support for Rose Dragons has a lot of fun stuff going on, and some powerful effects that you shouldn't entirely disrespect.
The new Utopia support may have been the biggest surprise of the LIOV presales, proving to be tremendously popular. The newest Rank-Up-Magic card, Rank-Up-Magic Zexal Force, is effectively a generic, easy-to-use Rank-Up for the deck, giving access to cards like Ultimate Dragonic Utopia Ray now, and later on, once we get the 2021 Battles of Legend set, Leo Utopia Ray.
Speaking of Ultimate Dragonic Utopia Ray, it finished Number 4 in presales. Maybe that's less surprising than it first seemed to me: Ultimate Dragonic Utopia Ray a pretty sweet monster for a fan-favorite anime theme, and it's a dirt cheap Ultra Rare right now, available for less than a dollar give or take shipping. When a high-profile fan-favorite's that accessible it's a recipe for big demand, especially early on in a new set's lifespan.
Movin' on up, the Charmer Link series continues! Lyna the Light Charmer, Lustrous does what the Charmer Links do, but it operates with and against Light monsters, a pretty popular attribute in current competition: Eldlich, Dogmatika, Shaddolls, and even Dragon Link all run notable Light monsters, making Lyna a big card to watch moving forward.
If you haven't read Anthony's article on the new Tri-Brigade deck and why it's so good, you really should; it's an excellent rundown of how to play the strategy, and how to play against it. Even if you have zero interest in running Tri-Brigade yourself, you're going to have to know how to beat it if you want to play Yu-Gi-Oh over the coming months.
That said, the long and short of it is that the new Tri-Brigade Bearbrumm the Rampant Rampager makes it easy to search Tri-Brigade Revolt, giving you the ability to reuse a ton of monsters (both for their effects and their value as Link Material). It's a scary card already, which is why the deck's already been topping tournaments. But with reliable access to Tri-Brigade Revolt, it's a different beast altogether.
Scrap Raptor may be the most powerful card in Lighting Overdrive. Played as a standalone suite with Scrap Chimera, Scrap Golem, and Scrap Wyvern, it's a 1-card Link 4, a 1-card Level 9 Synchro, or a 1-card Crystron Halqifibrax. It might bring Orcusts back into competition since it makes Scrap Recycler so much more consistent, and it's definitely going to push Dinosaurs to scary new heights with far more impressive end boards.
On one hand this was the best-selling card in LIOV pre-sales. By miles. The number of buyers who picked up Tri-Brigade Bearbrumm the Rampant Rampager in the last week was impressive, but twice the number of players bought an average of three or more copies of Scrap Raptor. And on the surface, it's dirt cheap.
From a different perspective, playing this card may be a bit more expensive than it looks, since Scrap Chimera, Scrap Golem, and Scrapyard have all gone bonkers on the secondary market. None of these cards were ever reprinted, save the OTS 13 printing of Scrap Golem. If you've got Scrap Chimera kicking around in the back of one of your trade binders, you just hit the jackpot.
The Top 5 non-LIOV cards this week were Crystron Phoenix, Scrap Golem, Scrap Wyvern, Knightmare Unicorn, and Dark Ruler No More, at Numbers 11 through 15 respectively. Players are buying in hard on Scrap Raptor, so you should expect to see it in tournaments over the coming weeks. It could easily become a format-shaping card.
That's it for today, but get ready, because we'll get our first look at Lightning Overdrive in high competition next weekend, at the mext Remote Duel Invitational! With Tri-Brigade, Drytron, and Dinosaurs all getting a big boost, I think we're going to see some surprising shakeups.
See you soon, and thanks for reading!