Saturday, November 27, 2010

Swiss Army Knife

Last time I posted about the Aesir (formerly Polar God Cards) I expressed my disgust at how badly Konami nerfed their effects. I mean sure, had Valkyrie of the Nordic Ascendant (Polar Star Angel Valkyria) retained her anime effect a player could potentially spam Level 6 and 10 Synchros on their first turn, but I doubt that would "wreck the meta". Anyway, it seems Konami's method of "fixing" the Aesir is by giving them their own Quickdraw Synchron. Introducing the first confirmed Secret Rare and TCG exclusive from Storm of Ragnarok: 

Vanadis of the Nordic Ascendant (Fiend-Type/DARK/Level 4/ATK 1700/DEF 800)
TUNER: You can substitute this card for any 1 "Nordic" Tuner Monster for a Synchro Summon. If this card is used as a Synchro Material Monster, all other Synchro Material Monsters must be "Nordic" monsters. Once per turn, you can send 1 "Nordic" monster from your Deck to the Graveyard to change this card's Level to the Level of the monster you sent to the Graveyard, until the End Phase.
I'll admit I never expected Konami to come up with something like this. Granted it would have been better if Vanadis had been splashable like Quickdraw Synchron, but I guess you can't have everything. While it is a real boon for fans of Odin, being able to serve as the Nordic Ascendant Tuner required to revive him during the End Phase, I'm not sure how successful a mono-Nordic deck would fare as the gods themselves don't cover each others weaknesses as they did in the anime. Sure Vanadis can allow you to summon Loki and Thor easier, but you won't be able to revive them without a Nordic Alfar or Nordic Beast Tuner also in your Graveyard.

But of course Konami has an answer for everything, and so now they created an incentive for those wanting to make their own Nordic deck. Behold the first confirmed Ultra Rare and second TCG exclusive from Storm of Ragnarok:

The Nordic Lights (Field Spell)
"Nordic" monsters on the field cannot be destroyed by battle. When this card on the field is destroyed, destroy all face-up "Nordic" monsters on the field.
Now here's a card that isn't half bad. It can be a double-edged sword though. Most of the Nordic monsters are too weak to do any significant damage and while the Field Spell is active they'll be sitting ducks to any big beater your opponent summons. Also while I am a bit peeved that they wasted an Ultra Rare spot on a card like this, it does show that Konami knows how to give support to an archetype that's supposed to be the centerpiece of the set.

Remember players, the game ends with you.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Who You Gonna Call?

I'm really upset at the approach Konami has towards the releasing rulings whenever a new set comes out. As part of their attempt to prevent spoiling the TCG exclusives, they avoid displaying the rulings for them in their official set rulebook. Thus, many players are left in the dark when it comes to rulings towards the new cards. Skull Meister, one of the exclusives in Starstrike Blast, is just one of the many cards for which this has been an issue as of late.

The main issue with this card was whether or not it could be played during the Damage Step, when effects like Mystic Tomato would activate. Without a ruling saying otherwise, players would be unable to stop the effects of standard recruitersa fact which would vastly reduce the potent of the card.

Fortunately, this issue has been resolved thanks to a statement released by Konami employee Jerome McHale: 
An update for everyone: Skull Meister's effect CAN be used during the Damage Step. This will be added to the Starstrike Blast Rules Booklet on the official website in the very near future.
I'm really hoping these kinds of issues can be resolved more efficiently in the future, but who am I to complain? I'm sure the process of determining the appropriate rulings for cards can be quite hectic especially for the world's #1 trading card game.

Remember players, the game ends with you.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Rock Band

I never quite understood the fascination gamers had with the Guitar Hero and Rock Band series. I mean if you think about it, they're no different from Simon, which some of you might remember as that old electronic game from the 1980's. Perhaps I am I biased when I speak as I've never been a fan of rhythm games, but I digress.

It seems that music has finally strayed into the dueling world, and in an age of Synchros and Tuners the timing couldn't have been more perfect. Coming out in Storm of Ragnarok I give you: The Symphonic Warriors 

Symphonic Warrior Bassist
(Machine-Type/WIND/Level 1/ATK 600/DEF 400)
TUNER: Once per turn, you can select 1 face-up "Symphonic Warrior" monster on the field. Increase its Level by the number of cards in your hand, until the End Phase. You can remove from play this card from your Graveyard to increase the Level of 1 face-up "Symphonic Warrior" monster you control by the number of cards in your hand, until the End Phase. 

Symphonic Warrior Drums
(Machine-Type/WIND/Level 2/ATK 700/DEF 700)
TUNER: Once per turn, you can select 1 face-up "Symphonic Warrior" monster on the field and declare 1 Attribute. The selected monster's Attribute becomes the declared Attribute. You can remove from play this card from your Graveyard and declare 1 Attribute to have the Attribute of 1 face-up "Symphonic Warrior" monster you control become the declared Attribute. 

Symphonic Warrior Piano
(Machine-Type/WIND/Level 3/ATK 900/DEF 1300)
TUNER: Once per turn, you can select 1 face-up "Symphonic Warrior" monster on the field and declare 1 Type. The selected monster's Type becomes the declared Type. You can remove from play this card from your Graveyard and declare 1 Type to have the Type of 1 face-up "Symphonic Warrior" monster you control become the declared Type

Though truthfully I wish the cards had retained their OCG names as Sound Warriors, as Tuners they aren't half bad. Bassist's versatility as a Tuner rivals that of Fabled Raven, without having to deplete your hand in the process, while Drums and Piano are the perfect Tuners for Attribute and Type-specific Synchro Summons respectively. I'm not sure how well a deck based around them would fare, but as far as techable Tuners go, these three definitely make the cut.

On another note, I am a little confused as to why the trio are WIND Attribute as the bass, the drum, and the piano are not wind instruments. Personally I would have had them be LIGHT or DARK, but I suppose those Attributes have enough options already.

Remember players, the game ends with you.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Making a God-King Bleed

When Konami first advertised Droll & Lock Bird, many players including myself were expecting it to turn out to be a sort of Effect Veiler for searching effects. While the actual effect isn't too far off, there are several reasons it failed to live up to our expectations. As the case with Appropriate, a player needs to wait until the opponent uses an effect that would add a card(s) from the deck to their hand in order to activate it. Also, instead of negating that effect, it prevents future occurrences of searching effects until the End Phase. So unless your facing a Gemini Stun, Hero Beat, or Lightsworn deck the odds of your opponent using multiple search cards in a single turn is quite slim. Most of the time, however, a simple Thunder King Rai-Oh will get the job done. Of course there is one major impact D&L Bird will cause: the death of Exodia decks.

Remember players, the game ends with you.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Jeff Jones

Why does it seem like everyone uses this guy as their source when it comes to set spoilers?

Granted if this rumor of a new Rock-type Koa'ki Meiru monster is true I'll be thrilled, but still everyone doesn't need to treat him like some kind of prophet. Sheesh.

Remember players, the game ends with you.