A very quick tournament report and some thoughts about the ARG Circuit.
This last Saturday was ARG Seattle. As you may well know, I am from Washington state so I lived about 15 minutes away from the venue where the event was being held, meaning it was almost a given that I should attend the event. I generally like entering into the larger scale Yu-Gi-Oh! tournaments to begin with and I also figured I might as well get a personal experience with the ARG circuit series to see how it goes down.
For those who are unaware, ARG stands for Alter Reality Games. ARG is essentially a large card game vendor. I’m not exactly sure when it all started, but around last year it really started picking up steam; ARG began to sponsor Yu-Gi-Oh! players and move them around to events and eventually they started their own tournament series similar to Konami’s Regionals, Nationals and Worlds tournaments. They’ve become rather popular, now holding quite frequent tournaments, but they aren’t really liked by Konami because they are in direct competition to them (or so I’m told).
The ARG Seattle event was held in the same venue as a normal Seattle Regional Qualifier, so it wasn’t unfamiliar to anyone who went. In general, I saw mostly the same faces I saw at a normal regional event, minus a majority of the kids and “for fun” players. Very un-beginner friendly environment in my opinion, which I’m not saying is bad in any way; it’s very much targeting a high skill based and competitive audience. It ended up being 152 players total in comparison to a normal 400 man Seattle regionals, which was quite quaint.
Basically, the event was exactly the same as a Konami event, which is a little disappointing. I kind of expected it to have a bunch of interesting extra stuff happening or to function at least a little differently, but from a practical perspective everything was exactly the same. All that was different is that there was a feature match table and two tables for streamed matches, which were generally the top tables. They also had some people off in the corner commentating the stream matches. Instead of having judges pick up match slips to take them back to the judge desk, you took them there yourselves. The entry was 30 dollars as opposed to regionals which is 20 dollars. Also, you didn’t get any packs for entering the tournament, only the top 32 got prizes in the form of credit to be used at ARG events or store. You got a mat for pre-registering, personally I think the art on it is bad, but I like that it special just for the ARG Seattle event, saying the place and date of the tournament on the mat. They made it a two day event and broke to a elimination tournament with the top 16 on day two, like a YCS event.
And that’s basically it. If you enjoy a typical regional event then the ARG Circuit Series wont be that unfamiliar to you. The only difference is that it has a much more competitive atmosphere
For the event, I decided to run Ultra Athletes(UAs) because I think this format is terrible and I wanted to just a run a fun deck. I surprisingly went 5-3 with the deck, despite the trolly-ness. I tested the deck quite extensively, it’s good in terms of UA decks, but it certainly isn’t as good as Qliphorts, Burning Abyss or Shaddolls. I would change some stuff, which I’ll say in a quick paragraph after my deck profile:
Main Deck Total: 40
- 1 U.A. Goalkeeper
- 2 U.A. Mighty Slugger
- 3 U.A. Perfect Ace
- 3 U.A. Midfielder
- 2 Warrior Lady of the Wasteland
- 3 Tour Guide From the Underworld
- 3 Scarm, Malebranche of the Burning Abyss
- 3 Reinforcement of the Army
- 3 Upstart Goblin
- 3 Terraforming
- 3 Mystical Space Typhoon
- 2 The Monarchs Stormforth
- 2 U.A. Powered Jersey
- 3 U.A. Stadium
- 1 Mausoleum of the Emperor
- 3 Royal Decree
Extra Deck (15):
- 1 HTS Psyhemuth
- 1 Armades, Keeper of Boundaries
- 1 Gaia Dragon, the Thunder Charger
- 1 Tiras, Keeper of Genesis
- 1 Adreus, Keeper of Armageddon
- 1 Number 61: Volcasaurus
- 1 Heroic Champion – Gandiva
- 1 Heroic Champion – Excalibur
- 1 Castel, the Skyblaster Musketeer
- 1 Diamond Dire Wolf
- 1 Number 30: Acid Golem of Destruction
- 1 Number 47: Nightmare Shark
- 1 Ghostrick Alucard
- 1 M-X Saber Invoker
- 1 Wind-Up Zenmaines
Side Deck (15):
- 1 U.A. Goalkeeper
- 1 U.A. Mighty Slugger
- 1 Exiled Force
- 3 Effect Veiler
- 2 Creature Swap
- 1 Book of Moon
- 3 Forbidden Chalice
- 2 Kaiser Colosseum
- 1 Zombie World
Okay, the only real main deck differences from my previous article about the deck are the Tour Guide engine and the one Mausoleum.
In the future I probably wont run Mausoleum of the Emperor because it never actually was relevant the whole tournament. I only ran it because I was so paranoid in my testing of opening all tribute monsters and field spells and terraformings and losing, which happened to me a bunch online. In the end I was never hurt by it, but I never actually used it either.
The Tour Guide engine is really good for now, at least until we get new support (unless the new stuff is bad). Tour Guide can summon Invoker which can summon Midfielder which you can bounce for Perfect Ace, Mighty Slugger or Goalkeeper. Then during your end phase you’ll search for a Tour Guide with Scarm. So if you open say Tour Guide plus Ace, you’ll end with an on field Invoker and Ace and an in hand Midfielder and Tour Guide, so a plus 2. Scarm is also nice for tribute fodder when you brick since he can be special summoned when you have no spells or traps and because he has a 2000 booty. Scarm is also really good discard fodder for Perfect Ace’s effect.
The side deck is basically terrible so don’t pay any mind to it, but that is what I sided. The only thing that I really think is a good idea is the extra Slugger and the Chalices for anything running Artifacts, which I never had the opportunity to play at the event.
If I were to change the deck in hindsight this is what I would do:
- – 3 Upstart Goblin
- – 1 Warrior Lady of the Wasteland
- – 1 Mausoleum of the Emperor
- + 3 Night Beam
- + 2 Creature Swap
For the side deck I would like to be running 3 Twister for Qliphorts. I don’t really know how to combat Burning Abyss effectively with this deck, that will require testing, but I will say I need to side something very effective versus them because if they go first it’s very difficult for me to win. I might want to side some De-Fusions for Shaddolls.
Now here’s a quick tournament report:
Round 1: Me vs. Hieu (sorry if I misspelled your name) running Qliphorts
- I win 2 – 0
1 – 0
Round 2: Me vs. Lance running Evilswarms
- Played this guy in Spokane, he was running Darkworlds there.
- Evilswarms is quite literally an auto-lose match-up. Unlike a deck like Lightsworns that do struggle versus Evilswarms, UAs literally have no options versus this deck. I literally could only summon Tour Guide and make Zenmaines or Acid Golem and pray they didn’t have Dimensional Prison or just about anything else to stop my play.
- I lose 0 – 2.
1 – 1
Round 3: Me vs. Trevor running Geargia
- Lose game one before I even reveal my deck. Lose game 2 cause I misplay really bad in a way that costs me the game even though I probably would have one that game and he takes complete advantage of that, like he should.
- I lose 0 – 2
1 – 2
Round 4: Me vs. Alex running Burning Abyss
- Alex very infrequently goes to my locals, so I know him a little bit.
- Game one I go first and brick really hard and he open Dante and Virgil I scoop so I don’t reveal my deck.
- Game two I brick, but not as bad, he still clobbers me.
- I lose 0 – 2
1 – 3
Round 5: Me vs. David running Penjilla
- I call the Vanilla Pendulum deck “Penjilla”. Now you know.
- I’m 1 – 3 at this point, so I play this guy. His deck’s pretty bad.
- I win 2 – 0
2 – 3
Round 6: No show
3 – 3
Round 7: Me vs. Edwin running Satellarknights
- I open Invoker into Ace. He open T-King and no S-Knights and when he finally does I’ve already had 2 turns to search with my field spell and he can’t make up for the advantage I’ve gained.
- He opens no S-Knights again and I play aggressively with Slugger and end the game quickly.
- I Win 2 – 0
4 – 3
Round 8: Me vs. C.J. running Qliphorts
- Game one I open Ace and Decree. I negate his Scout and he plays a second one. I get rid of the second one by negating it on his next turn with Ace. The game goes on for a while and he’s not really doing damage but is surviving because of Skill Drain and Saqlifice. I eventually just chunk him do death with Slugger equipped with Jersey.
- Game two he opens Shell equipped with Saqlifice set 3. I open Tour Guide, he chains Vanity, I set Decree and pass. He attacks Tour Guide dies, he sets one and ends. End Phase I flip Decree. I play the Field Spell and summon Midfielder and search Slugger. I special Slugger and attack. In response to my attack I activate MST destroying Saqlifice, and he can’t search with it because of Slugger’s effect. At this point I’ve pretty much sealed the game. I control the game for a couple more turns until I attack for game.
- I win 2 – 0
5 – 3
Huzzah. Honestly it wasn’t the best 5 – 3, I had a lot of crappy wins, but hey it was fun, and my deck did cool stuff and confused a lot of people. Apparently it’s good against Qliphorts? Either way, I had fun. That’s all for this week everybody. Later!
Written by: Kyle Oliver
Was nice seeing a report on U.A, even though i can’t find your old article that you talked about in here, so for me there wasn’t enough explaining on the deck and choices, but good overall. I actually was surprised not to see the artifact engine, cause they are utility level 5’s who can be tributed if needed, or for an xyz summon. but i guess the decree made it less viable.
I actually have 24 hours to decide on a none-meta deck(cause that’s always how i play) for a really big online tournament, being trying decks for a month and nothing seemed to be reliable for all of the 3 meta matchups. U.A sounds surprising but idk if consistent enough. I think i’l still go with Hieratics, even though tribute stun has potential either.
Like: In response to my attack I activate MST destroying Saqlifice, and he can’t search with it because of Slugger’s effect.
You can find my previous article about my preliminary deck profile for UA on the website’s main page currently as the feature of the “archetype” section or as the third article from the top in the list of articles at the bottom of the page (as of Nov. 7th this is accurate). It’s titled “Deck Profile: Ultra Athletes (U.A.)”.
Ya, I honestly don’t think it’s the best deck to be running right now. It’s significantly underwhelming compared to the meta and is inconsistent, as you said. If you were to ask me I would not suggest running the deck as of now.
I noticed you removed Duality from the last build, and you said you would remove Upstart in the future. Why so? Also, why not 3 Stormforth? I find it very useful in builds I have made. What was the biggest problem you had in dueling, besides the obvious bad hands?
Well, the reason I don’t run 3 Stormforth is the reason I ran less than three of any of the cards in the deck, like Slugger and Jersey. If you don’t want more than one of the card in your opening hand than you shouldn’t run 3, especially when it comes to non-meta decks, and even more especially with a deck that struggles with bad opening hands. Thus I run 2, plus it’s not a very necessary card in most games if you do setup.
The real main struggle was bad hands. When the deck opens bad you lose, if you don’t, you win. The deck also struggles with going second against a competent player running any of the big 3 decks (I mention them being competent because I’ve beaten poor players who had the appropriate outs just because they weren’t as skilled when going second). If the opponent opens exceptional, the deck has a real problem playing into back row and established boards, hence the need for Night Beam. A lot of games you don’t have time to set Decree and pass because you’ll lose; this is especially true versus BA. Ideally you go first and establish yourself, and your established board tends to prevent the opponent establishing themselves. Basically going first is a huge boon for UAs.
I’ve been testing out Night Beam, it’s been good, but there aren’t really any other good options for dealing with this problem other than waiting until the ban list or drawing better, which cannot be controlled.