11 February 2016

Afterthoughts on YCS Atlanta and the Emergency Ban

Last weekend was YCS Atlanta and it was also the last weekend PePe was a thing. And who would've guessed... PePe won (piloted by Jose Lagunes) in an obvious PePe mirror match (Here's the link). Commenting any more on the victorious deck isn't really worth it, since unless any other deck would've won, PePe was pre-determined to be the winner. And honestly, with the emergency ban being a thing, most people don't really cares about PePe anymore (no, not even the decks of Billy Brake nor Frazier Smith).

And the player base kind of proved the reason why the deck needed a hit. 29/32 top decks were PePe, with the other three being Kozmo and Monarch. And I think it was a small miracle that one Kozmo Player (Jose Uriel Diaz) actually made top 4 (going against a broken deck and making top 4 is a more amazing feat than piloting said broken deck and having the better draw). Too bad he bricked in his feature match (Here's the link to the Semi-Finals).

A wild Allen C. Pennington appears

Biggest surprise of the YCS was the sudden appearance of Allen C. Pennington. Allen is often considered one of the best Yu-Gi-Oh players of the past decade. But he is also considered one of the biggest Yu-Gi-Oh Bashers (he IS the author of "100 reasons why this game is awful (compared to MTG)"). So seeing him return to Yu-Gi-Oh, let alone see him top a YCS, is quite surprising to say the least.

Allen is one of the 3 non-PePe players who made top 32. And since Monarchs is considered to be (one of) the best decks post PePeBan (and the cheapest tier1 deck ever!), his decklist and explanation is probably the most interesting thing to come out of YCS Atlanta. Go watch it on his youtube channel, you might actually learn something! (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LYzfK3f29Y8).

Post Emergency Ban: Keep Calm and keep playing Yu-Gi-Oh

Over the past week, many (PePe) players showed their obvious frustrations on the emergency ban. Most of their arguments are just teenage boys raging that their toys just broke.

Though I can understand the frustration of some players when they said: "Where was this kind of emergency list when Dragon Rulers were tier 0? (the period with 3 Super Rejuvenations and baby dragons)", and "What chance do we have when Konami decides to hit the next good deck after a few weeks? Is Monarchs going to get hit next?"

Let me give you my opinion on it:

  • A: Not every top deck is a tier0 deck, remember that. It's not because deck X wins the World Championship, that it's automatically tier 0. And Full Power Dragon Rulers being tier 0 or not is something that die-hard fans are still discussing to this day. The die-hards keep saying that "it was close to tier0, but not quite, due to Judgment Prophecy". The only confirmed tier0 decks are and remain Tele-DAD, Airblade turbo and Cookie Cutter Chaos. Most other decks are "close to Tier0, but not entirely due to oter good decks at the same time".
  • B: You know that all full-power top decks are mostly handled/finished in the first upcoming F&L list, but until now, that handling could usually vary between a few weeks to a few months, depending on what time the next F&L list comes. TCG Konami has been experimenting on making that list more flexible to better suit the needs of the players, but the timing of the list will never be 100% good for everybody.
  • C: Seriously, the fear of decks being hit shortly after its release is unwarranted. While it probably is true that Konami will take a closer look to see if any deck is unhealthily powerful and might hit that before it chokes up the metagame (like now with PePe), those kind of decks only occur once every 2 years or so. Most formats consist of 2-3 major decks (or more), which is more healthier for the game.

And guess what's going to happen now? The meta is going to be devided in Monarchs, Kozmo, Burning Abyss and Mermail (maybe). And the PePe remnants who either will adapt to keep it alive (and fail, unless new support comes out), or go back to Odd-Eyes Magician or Majespecter builds. So three decks or more that are relevant.

Or in short:

Damn' you Konami?

Is it right to blame Konami?

Yes, sure, I won't stop you from doing so. But only aim your spite at the Japanese mother company.

This has been going on for years now. OCG Konami makes the cards, and determines which cards end up in our boosters (yeah, TCG Konami doesn't have much say in it); but they don't playtest the cards enough to prevent the existence of overpowering decks or OTK/FTK decks.

Also, since Yu-Gi-Oh doesn't have set rotation like Magic or the Pokémon card game, it is more likely an old card will suddenly turn a new deck broken (for example: Super Rejuvenation in DRulers), or prove to be a deadly anti-meta card (f.e. Horn of Heaven or Anti-Spell Fragrance).

This power creep and lack of set rotation has frustrated a lot of players and caused many people to quit YGO and do something else; but this is part of our game, which you just have to accept if you want to keep on playing. TCG Konami tries to be a little better about it (with the split F&L list and now this pre-emptive hit), but they're tied to the Japanese mother company. And if you've followed the video game news of the past year, you know how good of a company the Japanese seat of Konami is.

What about the next full F&L list?

The next full F&L list will probably solidify most hits from this emergency ban and if necessary, it will probably bury Burning Abyss completely (don't forget: Konami likes to promote new decks and likes you to forget the oldest viable ones).

Also, the one card i'd love to see get a hit (or become forbidden) is Wavering Eyes. "slightly overpowered" is an understatement for this card. If gentleman agreements need to be made for playing without one specific card, you know something is wrong.

For the rest, maybe finally get rid of Magical Explosion? I hear Monarch have a way to (once again) abuse that old friggin' card...

Until next time, V out.

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