Kantai Collection Banlist Update (2018)

Hello world, it’s Yuuhi, back to talk about some new topics!

Now that the a majority of the new year’s JP releases have been decided, I’m sure everyone is ready to go into new sets like Darling in the FranXX and Saekano.

While Kantai was once the largest set in the game, with player numbers to match, new sets being released have dented the numbers, as well as the release of Azur Lane stealing the hearts of Admirals (read: kuso teitokus) everywhere. Kantai’s play rate has further been hammered by the inclusion of a previously-staple card (Inazuma) being placed on a Choose 1 of 4 with Z3; essentially rendering it unplayable since the Z3 engine is widely considered to be critical in the modern Kantai deck.

However, as of the latest revision to the list, Z3 has been freed, allowing players to go back to a pick 1 of 3. This means once again, players can choose to run Inazuma (pseudo-riki), Hibiki (heal tax), or Hatsukaze (Battle Phase Anti-Salvage). Inazuma and Hibiki are likely to be the chosen choices as Hatsukaze generally has fallen by the wayside due to modern decks either not relying on Salvage, or said Kantai deck itself relying on salvage triggers. (Kashima and Kongou are both very serviceable finishers.)

For most players, the choice of Inazuma seems obvious as having Inazuma on field in tandem with a Z3 trigger into level 1 basically sculpts your hand with whatever you are missing. While this is all well and good, this basically shoehorns the deck into a field-based deck at 1 in order to try and get an advantage over the opponent, as this is when Kantai’s cards generally shine the most. In the most common meta deck (Prinz combo, choice of Kashima/Kongou cxc lvl3, assorted non cxc lvl3) Prinz Eugen is fairly mediocre as a card outside of her Climax Combo turn, being an unimpressive 4500 base power; and Bismarck requiring an ACT in order to be a tanky character. Sets like Love Live Sunshine!! Or Sword Art Online, which can easily pressure and break the set-up are a big issue, as Kantai Collection’s end game is generally not that impressive outside of potentially Compass on a good card.

I would like to advance that perhaps it is time to go back to running Hibiki. Currently, while there is still a significant amount of Level 1 On Reverse combos (Konosuba2, Vivid Strike, Attack on Titan), generally  they either reach a power number which is unreasonable to counter on more than one lane, or you can leverage the Z3zwei + counter combo to defend your board. In this case, it may be better to try and gain advantage elsewhere. This is where Hibiki comes in. As an essentially tuned version of the ‘Bond’ mechanic, on a serviceable 0/0 -> 1/0 change, you are paying one stock for a slightly oversize 1/0 beater, one card in memory (this equates to 2% in a fresh deck of ‘50’, but we won’t go into too many numbers in this article.), plus activates an Anti-Heal Tax effect. A majority of decks in Weiss Schwarz have some kind of healing effect in their deck, and being able to Tax that helps your damage to stick in a close game of attrition. While it is symmetrical and you would have to pay extra to heal yourself, generally the level 3 cards in Kantai (or at least the ones taken into context here) do not heal, as their effects are generally to maintain cards in hand or provide additional finishing power. (Prinz Eugen Lv3, Kashima Lv3 cxc)

As written above, I do not seriously believe that Hatsukaze is a good choice for your Choose 1 of 3 at the moment, for two main reasons. Firstly, using Hatsukaze takes up a slot in your backrow that is already pretty much reserved by the Z3/Z3 Zwei backrow combo. Using Hatsukaze instead makes it very hard to garner field advantage at level 1 like the Z3 combo as that combination essentially gives you 2500 (or more) power to assign split among your characters. Further, a tri-prong problem in that modern Kantai wants Gate finishers, which means you essentially defeat yourself everytime you trigger that climax, opponents aren’t really playing Gates (which means your meta choice is not pulling its weight), and lastly, it doesn’t actually ‘stop’ your opponent from getting cards. This means that if your opponent wants the card more than damage, they get that option still. Even worse is if they are playing some sort of re-stander deck, they can leverage the soul to deal better numbers. Because of these reasons, I do not believe that Hatsukaze is a good competitive choice for Kantai right now.


I hope that this article has given you a little insight into how Kantai can conceivable operate after the update to the Banlist, and that you may consider picking up the fleet girl deck.

Next time, we’ll be (hopefully I remember) talking about a few builds and tech cards for Kantai, and how they fit into the current Japanese metagame.

Until then, happy Weissing!






Post X-BT04 Decklists – Shadow Dragon, Knights, Laevateinn, Athora, CHAOS, and Thunder Empire

Hey everyone, thenightsshadow here.  It’s been a while since I did a Buddyfight article, so I figure I might as well make up for lost time.  With some content providers stopping in the past year, I’m gonna try to step up when I can.  So, here are my current Post-X-BT04 decklists with the archetypes featured in the booster, and provide a general idea about where the deck is going and what it wants to accomplish.

Continue reading Post X-BT04 Decklists – Shadow Dragon, Knights, Laevateinn, Athora, CHAOS, and Thunder Empire

Shark Tips – Installment 6 (Immaturity Knows No Sin)

This article is rated Experience Level 7.  This article is perfect for budding tournament players that wish to understand more about doing well in tournaments and increasing their win rate.

Welcome to Shark Tips, an irregular installment that aims to help readers improve their play, no matter what card game they play.  In this segment, I discuss a tip I’ve learned or am in the process of learning, and expand on its ramifications and/or applications.

Continue reading Shark Tips – Installment 6 (Immaturity Knows No Sin)

Yuuhi Guest Post #1 – Tournament Mindset of Practice

Hi, I’m Yuuhi and I’m a (hopefully more-frequent-soon) guest writer here at Climax Phase. I am relatively new to Weiss Schwarz, only having played a  few months, but hopefully my experience in competitively participating in other games such as Yugioh and Magic the Gathering will provide some insights for you readers out there.

I’ll be writing a series of articles regarding the mindset of a tournament player here. Over the next few articles, I hope to paint a picture of how a player can be an effective tournament player, keeping good habits while (hopefully) minimizing the effect of bad ones.

The first aspect we will be touching on is the idea of practice. Of course, anyone who enjoys playing Weiss Schwarz is going to get in a bunch of games, because you simply like playing the game. However, while playing the game is practice in and of itself, it is not necessarily about the quantity of games that you play, but rather their quality. Many people describe Weiss Schwarz as a game where you simply “turn your cards sideways”, but I would like to challenge that notion. The game itself can boil down into a state where there simply are no other options, but the game had to progress to such a state. There is almost always something that could have been different about that game to lead to a different outcome. This is not to say that the alternate line of play would have been correct, but it is more a statement of theory that multiple lines of play exist; and that perhaps a different choice may have been correct.

The immediate effect of talking about this hypothetical game is that practice immediately makes a striking point.

“The idea that practice actually accomplishes something.”

Again, Weiss Schwarz is a game that takes a fair amount of skill to play; and there is established theory and fundamentals to playing the game. A player that has played the game a lot and is skilled at the game’s fundamentals is generally going to do better than someone who has randomly picked up a deck, even if that deck is presumably better. (Notwithstanding tier 0 formats like in YGO/BDFight). This is one of the most important boons of practice.

Being strong at a game’s fundamentals is proven to take you far, especially in a tournament setting with a large amount of players. Generally, in the first few rounds you will play against someone who does not have the strongest fundamentals, and having stronger fundamentals (knowing how to compress, when to cx combo for maximum effect, etc) will swing the game in your favour. Luck still plays a large part in any card game, but Weiss Schwarz is quite unique in that over the course of a game (which is fairly long compared to other games), you will be able to significantly influence that luck through fundamental card game skills.

Another point to make about practice is that you will generally learn the most from playing against players who are better than you. There is no other way besides just putting yourself out there and experiencing ‘why’ they are better. Everybody has differing opinions and experiences, but between having fundamental skills and developing your senses and experiences by playing absorbing knowledge from better players, you will definitely improve as a player.

As this is my first article here, I would like to keep it fairly short, but do know that this is a huge topic and I could honestly write a whole book on the subject.

Please let me know what you thought of this article, and I would greatly appreciate any tips for writing / theory that you, dear reader, can give.

Yuuhi – signing off.


Shark Tips – Installment 5 (The Stage in His Hands)

This article is rated Experience Level 7.  This article is perfect for budding tournament players that wish to understand more about doing well in tournaments and increasing their win rate.

Welcome to Shark Tips, an irregular installment that aims to help readers improve their play, no matter what card game they play.  In this segment, I discuss a tip I’ve learned or am in the process of learning, and expand on its ramifications and/or applications.

Continue reading Shark Tips – Installment 5 (The Stage in His Hands)

Weiss Schwarz: Is New Set “Privilege” Real?

Hello everyone, it’s Hanbe again. Hopefully my previous post provided some insight as to how ViVid Strike! works.  With 2018 coming, Weiss Schwarz will be celebrating its tenth year anniversary soon.

As with all trading card games, “power creep” is bound to become a factor eventually, and Weiss Schwarz is no exception to this.  However, are new sets truly as “privileged” as majority of the players believe?  Is it truly impossible to win with older sets without being crazy lucky? I decided to spend this 2017 WGP Regional to test this by bringing Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha 魔法少女リリカルなのは to 2 regional events to test this.    The TLDR is that based on my results, new set “privilege” exists because of the ease of access to search, salvage, and discard outlets for hand-fixing. Continue reading Weiss Schwarz: Is New Set “Privilege” Real?

Hanbe Shares Initial Thoughts on ViVid Strike!

It’s been a few months since my last post on Climax Phase, but it’s Hanbe once again. In my most recent post, the neo-standard series  fate/kaleid liner Prisma☆Illya (fate/kaleid liner プリズマ☆イリヤ )  was the focus.  This time, it’ll be ViVid Strike!  The booster for ViVid Strike was released a months ago, and this post will primarily be my initial thoughts.  Currently, the 8 gold bar build appears to be the most notable ViVid Strike! build both locally in Vancouver and abroad (based on what I’ve seen on Twitter).  There are several variations of the build; however in general, the deck has a strong level 0, a very straightforward level 1, a level 2 focused around early playing level 3 characters, and a very potent level 3 should the early plays survive.  In my opinion, the 8 gold bar build for ViVid Strike! is strong but remains shy of “top tier” status because of its over reliance on a handful of key cards.  As a result of this over reliance, the 8 gold bar build has some very difficult matchups that are highly relevant in the current meta; however, it remains a threat in the tournament scene. Continue reading Hanbe Shares Initial Thoughts on ViVid Strike!