Dear friends of the Yu-Gi-Oh! TCG!
Ever since I laid eyes on this card…
… I felt the urge to build Equip-Spell centered decks that made use of the awesome draw potential slumbering in Sunlight Unicorn. In this two part article I will showcase two totally different approaches on Equip-Spell-themed decks, the first of which does not even run Sunlight Unicorn but does run a good number of Equip cards as a central part of its strategy. Let me get started with…
3 x Vylon Ohm
3 x Abyss Soldier
3 x Mermail Abysshilde
3 x Mermail Abyssturge
3 x Mermail Abysspike
3 x Mermail Abyssnose
3 x Atlantean Heavy Infantry
3 x Atlantean Marksman
3 x Abyss-Scale of Cetus
3 x Abyss-Scale of the Kraken
3 x Abyss-Scale of Mizuchi
2 x Moray of Greed
1 x Dark Hole
3 x Fish Depth Charge
1 x Torrential Tribute
About the Deck:
This is a heavy-field control deck using Abyssoldier and various Mermail Monsters to discard cards for beneficial effects such as those of the Atlantean Monsters, that destroy set or face-up cards when discarded for the effect of a Water Monster, all supported by 3 of each of the Abyss-Scale Equipments. As there are relatively few (only a quarter of the deck) Equip-Spells, I did decide against Sunlight Unicorn, which will however be prominently featured in the second deck to be showcased in this very article. The only odd non-Water Monster I insited on running was Vylon Ohm, as the Abyss-Scales will get destroyed – for potentially great and disruptive effects as I think – and Vylon Ohm lets you return an Equip-Spell from your graveyard to your hand, which is a nice thing and not found so easily in the YGO TCG as a whole. I have to note that this is a very unusual Mermail-build as most of those focus on quickly XYZ-ing or Synchro Summoning through the swarming capabilities of the Mermail Monsters. I passed on all of that – not least cause this is intended for casual play only and is not aiming to be competitive.
Let us look at some of the Monsters. Here is your basic Abyss Soldier:
Abyss Soldier has quite an amazing, terribly disruptive effect as you can return ANY card on the field to its owner’s hand, no matter if Spell/Trap or Monster or if face-up/face-down etc. Now it gets even worse for your opponent if you combine Abyss-Soldier or some of your Mermails discard effects with cards like Atlantean Marksman and Atlantean Heavy Infantry. When discarded for the effect of a Water Monster like Abyss Soldier, Marksman will let you destroy any 1 set card on the field whereas Heavy Infantry will let you destroy any 1 face-up card. Both is pretty amazing combined with Abyss Soldier, as you’ll get rid of 2 cards at the price of one.
On to the Mermails, asides from serving as targets for the Abyss-Scale Equips (we will come to those in due time) those have great effects as well. Abysshilde lets you Special Summon a Mermail Monster from hand when she is discarded (let’s say for the effect of Abyss Soldier or your other Mermails). Abyssturge lets you discard a Water Monster (once again the Atlanteans come to mind) when Normal Summoned to return a Level 3 or lower Water Monster from graveyard to hand. You can use that effect not only to activate Atlantean Marksman or Heavy Infantry, but also to receive one of the two to use them once again. Your Abyss Soldiers won’t run out of ammo any time soon in this deck, that’s for sure! Abysspike does a similar thing as you can once again discard a Water Monster when he is Normal Summoned which lets you then search your deck for a Level 3 Water Monster and put it into your and. Of course the Atlanteans would be good targets for to fetch. Lastly, Abyssnose lets you discard a Water Monster when it destroys an opponent Monster to Special Summon a Mermail Monster straight from the Deck.
Now about the actual Equip-Spells: I am running 3 of every of the 3 different Abyss-Scales in existance. All of them can only be equipped to Mermail Monsters and Abyss-scale of Mizuchi gives 800 ATK to the Monster it equips and is destroyed when a Spell’s effect is activated on your opponent’s side of the field. It negates that effect. Similarly. Abyss-scale of Cetus negates an opponent Trap effect as well as giving an 800 ATK boost. Abyss-scale of the Kraken lastly gives a 400 ATK boost and negates a Monster effect and is sent to the graveyard if it does. So with all these negation effects you will only further interrupt your opponent and for the fact that the Abyss-scales are sent to the graveyard by that, Vylon Ohm was added to retrieve some of them so you can re-use their effects.
One last card I wanted to Note is Fish Depth Charge. It is a Trap you can activate to Tribute one of your Fish Type Monsters to destroy any card on the field and then draw a card. Nice to have this one in reaction to one of your Mermails getting destroyed anyways!
Gemini Equip (Unicorn-Powered):
3 x Sunlight Unicorn
3 x Vylon Ohm
2 x Armed Samurai Ben Kei
3 x Iron Blacksmith Kotetsu
3 x Evocator Chevalier
2 x Phoenix Gearfried
3 x Supervise
3 x Fusion Sword Murasame Blade
3 x Mage Power
3 x United We Stand
3 x Axe of Despair
2 x Big Bang Shot
2 x Symbols of Duty
2 x Trade-In
1 x Foolish Burial
1 x Reinforcements of the Army
1 x Call of the Haunted
About the Deck:
This is a Gemini-Equip Deck that is built in a way so as to max-out on Sunlight Unicorn as a potent draw engine. Almost half of the deck (19 cards out of 40) are Equip Spells so this means that statistically, one out of two times, you WILL get an extra card from Unicorn and that for free basically. Since it lets you take a reaveled (“excavated”) Equip-Spell from the top of your deck into your hand, your supply of said Equip-Spells will get restocked again and again. That is much needed actually due to the very nature of Equip-Spells, which are very vulnerable, not only to Spell removal like the classic Mystical Space Typhoon, but also due to the fact that they live and die so to say with the Monsters they are equipped to. And Monsters will die – a lot! There are just so many easy ways to get rid of pretty much any Monster so your Equip Spells will not stay all that long in most match-ups. Another card to remedy the situation to some extent is Vylon Ohm, which we have already seen in the first deck discussed previoulsy in this article. When Vylon Ohm is Normal Summoned you can banish an Equip-Spell from your graveyard and take it into your hand during your next Standby-Phase, which is a nice way to recover lost Equipment.
Before I come to the Equip-half of the deck, let me introduce you to the rest of the Monsters first:
I run only two different Gemini Monsters actually, so the deck name “Gemini-Equip” could be seen as a bit misleading – I shall discuss the two Geminis shortly, but first a few words on two of the other, non-Gemini Monsters I am running in this deck. First off, we got 3 copies of Iron Blacksmith Kotetsu. He is really neat in getting you any or rather THE Equip-Spell that you need most at any point in a game, as he can be flipped to add any 1 Equip-Spell from your deck to your hand. Secondly there are two odd copies of potentially highly dangerous Armed Samurai – Ben Kei in the deck:
I once built a deck focussed solely on a Ben Kei OTK (one-turn-kill) but disassembled it as it either won on turn 1 (if the opponent went first) or it did not work at all. I run two odd copies of Ben Kei in this deck as a potentially very powerful side-strategy. As you can see the Armed Samurai is quite weak at 500/800 but his effect rocks in a deck consisting of 50% Equip Spells. Once you equip him a few times, the small guy becomes a force to be reckoned with. For each card equipped to Ben Kei he will get one additional attack during each Battle Phase. This means if you attach just two Axe of Despair, he will be a 2500 ATK beast that can attack thrice. That alone can whipe out whole opponent armies in one Battle-Phase.
Now coming to the actual Geminis, I run two of them: The Level 4 Evocator Chevalier as well as Level 12 Phonix Gearfried. Both of them have quite amazing and useful effects related to Equipment, once they have been summoned again to activate their Gemini effects.
… has a decent ATK of 1900 and when you summoned him for the second time he will get the amazing effect of sending any Equip-Card to the graveyard in order to destroy ANY 1 card your opponent controls. With 19 Equipments in total in the deck you should have ample ammo for the Chevalier and you can always use Vylon Ohm to retrieve an Equipment that was sacrificed if you really need it back.
…lets you Special Summon a Gemini from your Graveyard whenever an opponent activates a Spell card AND when a Spell or Trap card is activated during either player’s turn, you can just conveniently send one of your Equip cards to the graveyard to negate the effect and destroy the activated Spell or Trap card – very powerful card effect as well. And he swings in at 2800 ATK at the very least – if not boosted by a ton of Equipment that is!
Before I get to the contents of my diverse and numerous “weaponry” a few words about the non-Equip Spells. Trade-In is just great to drop a Phoenix Gearfried into the graveyard, from where he can be reanimated by means of some of my Equip-Spells (more on those shortly) or by the single Call of the Haunted I am running, which will draw you two extra cards in the process. I am really a huge fan of Trade-In and find myself running this handy Spell alongside many Level 8 Monsters in many a deck! Also I included a Foolish Burial for similar reasons, dropping Gearfried into the Graveyard to set everything up for Special Summoning him from there, as well as one Reinforcements of the Army, which will “tutor” for either Ben Kei or Evocator Chevalier, whichever you need most at that point.
Now to the other half of the deck, the actual Equip-Spells:
- Supervise is central to this deck, although I run precious few actual Gemini Monsters (5 to be precise). It lets me turn a Gemini Monster into an Effect Monster with the effects as stated on the Monster card and, and this is crucial, when Supervise is sent to the Graveyard from the filed, it lets me Special Summon a Normal Monster from the Graveyard. Well first of all you can destroy it at will through the awesome effects of Evocator Chevalier or Phoenix Gearfried and then it can reanimate any Gemini Monster, preferably another Phoenix Gearfried, since those count as Normal Monsters while in the Graveyard. This is arguable the best Equip card you have in this deck, although it doesn’t give any stats boosts by itself and is useless if you don’t have a Gemini Monster around to equip it to.
- Fusion Sword Murasama Blade is simply great as well, although you need a Warrior to equip it to. Ben Kei, Evocator Chevalier and Gearfried would be your targets. Not only does it give a somewhat lackluster 400 ATK boost to the Monster it equips, but also said Monster cannot be destroyed by card effects! This is simply amazing as all your key creatures (well save for your main draw engine, the Sunlight Unicorn) are of the Warrior Type and the Fusion Sword makes them more or less invincible to any Monster removal, be it pinpoint like a common Fissure or mass removal of the likes of Dark Hole etc…
- Mage Power gives the equipped Monster +500 ATK for every Spell and Trap card on your side of the field. So at the very least it will grant a 500 ATK boost for itself and in a deck full of Equip Spells it can be far more dangerous in theory.
- United We Stand even gives a 800 ATK AND DEF Boost for each face-up Monster you control.
- Axe of Despair just gives a hefty 1000 ATK to the Monster it equips – fair and square!
- Big Bang Shot gives +400 ATK and the Monster it is attached to will deal piercing battle damage which is great to get through opponent defenses easily.
- Symbols of Duty is Special in that it lets you send one of your face-up Normal Monsters (think of your Geminis) to the graveyard to Special Summon any Monste from ANY graveyard. This can be handy for reanimating Phoenix Gearfried or for stealing any opponent Monster from their graveyard, which I find pretty neat!