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.
I couldn’t believe my eyes. I rubbed them once more and stared at the screen, dumbfounded, hoping it was just due to lack of sleep. However, the same result continued to shine on my phone.
It was August 1. I was at camp when the information released, and as spotty as the reception was I moved around the campsites, trying to find the best area to download the necessary pieces of data. What I didn’t expect, though, was that I would be devastated by the news.
Ever since April 22nd, our Spring Regionals, I had been determined to avenge my poor showing in Weiß that day and make it up to the podium in the fall, when it really mattered. I practiced whenever I could, and used a lot of spare time to just build and test. All of that preparation and planning went out the window August 1 when I found out that Weiss would be on a Saturday, and due to religious reasons I would not be able to attend. I spent the rest of the camp in a generally negative mood and had a tough time composing myself even at work the following Sunday night.
After complaining about it to my group, I decided that I was gonna make this work. I was so far behind the curve for testing and practicing Buddyfight, but I figured that the release of the Ace Boosters before our regionals would help to insulate me from lacking practice. I began to ask everyone I knew I could trust outside of the province for help. I wanted to know how decks were now being built, and asked a lot of questions about them.
August 12 quickly rolled around, which was our Shop Challenge date locally. I finished 3rd, impressive for someone who hadn’t played in a while, but my deck choice was poor, playing Goodstuffs Chaos without Autodeities, and my sideboard was basically prepped for a meta that didn’t exist. The eventual winner beat me with Autodeity Chaos in the first round of top cut.
I determined after that day that I was not going to use Chaos for our Regionals. I had barely squeaked by into top 8 using a grindy defensive version last Fall, but the deck had gotten into Tier 0 since then and required a massive banlist hit to save the format. Playing the deck just didn’t feel right anymore.
By the time August 31 rolled around, I had delved around with some makeshift builds of all of the sets. I was also busy making Vanguard Breakdowns and was in the process of trying to make the Buddyfight ones too but just couldn’t string it all together. Unlike the Vanguard ones, I had no practice with the Gargantua Awakened decks and it was hard to just build on conjecture, especially when Dragon World and Star Dragon World were two of my weakest worlds when it came to card knowledge so I wasn’t really up to date on potential sideboard options. I eventually scrapped the idea altogether. Instead, my focus turned to the Ultimate Boosters, which had been completely spoiled almost a month prior. I figured, with my brother obviously using Katana, I’d be forced into borrowing one of the Ace decks to compete, as besides Chaos I owned a full playset of Magic and Guardians, and a near playset of Hundred Demons, but none of those four seemed like it was worth running now. Luckily, I had a friend, nicknamed Seedcode, that would be getting four of the Ultimate Booster decks, namely Folktale, Battle Buildings, Cosmoman, and Mobile Aerial Team, and he would also upgrade his Satsuki deck too. This meant I had a fallback option, and I began working on decks. Feel free to click these onto a new tab to see what I came up with to start testing.
You might notice that they varied in quality. The main goal was to start with these and begin testing.
Here’s the thing, though: that was all I did publicly. I also had a secret weapon I had been working on for a while: Electrodeities. This deck went through a lot of changes, so I want to focus on it here.
This was my list back on August 4, when I first made the list.
I had asked a friend, nicknamed Shou Tucker (nickname makes sense later), to make me proxies, and in exchange I would print out his Astrodragon proxies and mine. This is something I normally didn’t do but time was of the essence. That, and my main testing partner was Nightspurge, who was proxying Mobile Aerial Team. We worked on his deck a lot while making modifications to my playing style and decks for a few weeks.
After my brother confirmed he couldn’t play in this regionals, I was ready. September 10, I had a new list drawn up in my notes.
No major change came about until September 16, when Jojo Pilsner contacted me. We had chatted prior about Onis prior, so it was great to hear that he placed 2nd in Houston, though it was his misplay that cost him the finals match in Game 2. Regardless, it was a good job to get that high, so I congratulated him, then began to ask him about my decklist above since he used Electrodeities as well.
First thing that came up? The Impact. “Bright future is terrible and unnecessary,” he said. When queried, he responded with “It’s really just overkill. It wins matchups you would win anyways.” We talked for quite a bit more, especially his use of Mizuchi, but that one starting line put me back to scenario testing.
Scenario testing is what I do when I don’t have time or players to test with. I go over an individual card and every possible scenario that can happen in a matchup, and analyze its use or helpfulness to that individual scenario. After two full days of scenario testing, as well as talking to other people like Frank Ford, I came to the conclusion that besides the Linkdragon Order matchup, Jojo was right, and on September 18, 5 days before the regionals, I finalized my list. I later consulted with Gerald Beason but no change came out of that, and so this ended up being the list I went with.
(I’ll discuss the list in part 3, including my thoughts on each card.)
I also ended up making Astrodragons for my foster brother and Chaos for Verniy, one of the group members. Their decks are below.
With all of that done, it was now just gathering more information, as that’s all I could do, and wait until the Regional Day.
~thenightsshadow, to be continued in Part 2.