Deck Profile: Shaddoll Artifacts

After a lot of testing and the knowledge gained from the YCS, here’s my updated Shaddoll deck featuring Artifacts.

Taking into account what I learned from my matches at the recent YCS, I learned that I really wanted to run more control aspects in the form of Trap-esque defense, and also that I always wanted Artifact Lancea because it’s really good. With that in mind I went back to my Shaddoll roots (haha…) and revisited Shaddoll Artifacts. The deck has infinitely more access to Artifact Lancea, making the Nekroz match-up far more manageable (and really making Infernoids a rather easy match-up, which there is a fair amount of at my locals), but also far more control using Artifact Moralltach and Artifact Ignition. Artifact Scythe is also good for the mirror, patching that hole up a little bit. I made my first iteration based off of an OCG build (as I seem to be doing more often) and added in Kuribandit, which I’ve ended up running 2 of. Here’s the deck profile, I hope you enjoy:

 

Main Deck Total: 41

Monsters (22):

  • 1 Black Luster Soldier – Envoy of the Beginning
  • 1 Dark Armed Dragon
  • 2 Shaddoll Beast
  • 1 Artifact Scythe
  • 1 Artifact Moralltach
  • 2 Artifact Lancea
  • 1 Artifact Beagalltach
  • 1 Shaddoll Dragon
  • 3 Shaddoll Squamata
  • 1 Felis, Lightsworn Archer
  • 3 Mathematician
  • 2 Kuribandit
  • 2 Shaddoll Hedgehog
  • 1 Shaddoll Falco

Spells (10):

  • 2 Shaddoll Fusion
  • 1 Soul Charge
  • 3 El Shaddoll Fusion
  • 3 Artifact Ignition
  • 1 Snatch Steal

Traps (9):

  • 3 Artifact Sanctum
  • 2 Sinister Shadow Games
  • 1 Shaddoll Core
  • 3 Call of the Haunted

Extra Deck (15):

Fusions (6):

  • 1 El Shaddoll Shekhinaga
  • 3 El Shaddoll Construct
  • 2 El Shaddoll Winda

Synchros (4):

  • 1 Leo, the Keeper of the Sacred Tree
  • 1 Black Rose Dragon
  • 1 Arcanite Magician
  • 1 Armades, Keeper of Boundaries

XYZs (5):

  • 1 Number 62: Galaxy-Eyes Prime Photon Dragon
  • 1 Gaia Dragon, the Thunder Charger
  • 1 Constellar Pleiades
  • 1 Number 61: Volcasaurus
  • 1 Castel, the Skyblaster Musketeer

Side Deck (15):

  • 1 Artifact Lancea
  • 1 Shaddoll Dragon
  • 1 Raigeki
  • 3 Mystical Space Typhoon
  • 2 The Monarchs Stormforth
  • 2 De-Fusion
  • 2 Mirror Force
  • 3 Mistake

First off, I think I should note that I think there’s almost no reason to be running the Denko Sekka build anymore. All the current builds of decks are either adapted to it or are Nekroz who totally wreck that version of the deck, and in my opinion you’d only be putting yourself at a disadvantage by running that build. That being said, this build will probably lose a mirror match to a Denko Dolls build, which is kind of annoying, because Denko Sekka is pretty good against this deck.

Second order of business, as you probably noticed there are only 8 Shaddoll monsters total in this deck, which is almost the bare minimum. You could get away with 2 Squamata, but I’d rather not since I think it improves consistency and is the ideal monster to deal with current meta threats and also is one of the combo pieces in the plays I’ve been doing the most as of late. In order to facilitate this lesser amount of Shaddolls you have to play everything very purposefully and mindfully search and add Shaddolls to hand. There’s no flippant Shaddoll sending and fusion-ing in this build, everything is decisive and deliberately chosen when you’re playing, in contrast to the Denko build which dabbled in excess due its OTK nature allowing it to sacrifice late game for early game power.

About each individual Shaddoll and my decision for the ratio:

  • Shaddoll Beast (2): The mirror isn’t really as relevant anymore, so tribute setting Beast is less relevant. Once again, we’re also no longer working in excess, and Beast can cause bad hands in excess. It’s not particularly good to draw it because it requires a combo to be effective, unlike the best Shaddoll (Squamata), so I want to keep its numbers down, but 1 isn’t enough copies so 2 is pretty much exactly how many needs to be run in the deck.
  • Shaddoll Squamata (3): Squamata is the only of the Shaddolls that really stands alone in the current format. It has solid ATK, a good flip effect and also is the ideal combo food. Shaddoll Dragon is almost as good except it falls short in certain categories. Being able to send Shaddoll Core and other fusion cards to the graveyard is also incredibly relevant to my play-style and more easily allows you to run less of the (in my opinion worse card) Shaddoll Fusion.
  • Shaddoll Dragon (1): Dragon is a very mediocre card in the current meta. It’s flip effect is rarely relevant; as I said to someone at my locals, if your best play is to set a Dragon you’ve already lost the duel. His send effect is becoming less relevant as well and even when it is you’re unlikely to use it more than once per duel. A player just starting the use of Shaddolls will send Dragon a lot when fusion summoning, but I highly recommend baiting out Spells and Traps with this deck rather than using Shaddoll Dragon, unless the situation demands it or assures an OTK when you use a Dragon. Dragon is also terrible to draw, because when you fusion with it it only simplifies the game state and doesn’t facilitate your own combos.
  • Shaddoll Hedgehog (2): 2 is pretty much the standard number and I don’t think I will ever run more or less of it in the future unless Konami makes some highly illogical ban list hits like both fusion spell to 1 (which I guarantee won’t happen). More often than not I’m using it for fusion material to search a Squamata for later.
  • Shaddoll Falco (1): If I had really good luck with never drawing Falco I would certainly run 2 copies of it, but when you run 2 you almost always draw it, and drawing it is bad for the same reason drawing Dragon is bad. Both Dragon and Falco when drawn don’t move your deck forward while Squamata, Hedgehog and Beast do. Falco is really important for recursion and defense though and it’s very possible to juggle just the single copy for a whole game.

With the smaller Shaddoll engine the deck more consistently opens with non-Shaddoll monster cards, which is essentially the cards you’ll be using to control the opponent with, such as Artifact cards, boss monsters and Fusion spells. Even with a small amount of Shaddolls, they tend to draw themselves out of the deck, thinning it quickly, thus further increasing consistency.

In general, to also help make up for the lesser Shaddoll line-up there’s Call of the Haunted. Call of the Haunted works many purposes in this deck. The most obvious purpose is to summon Artifact monsters, giving you recursion of Moralltach for control or stun with Lancea. It also revives Shaddolls for plusses when MST’d. It can special summon El Shaddoll Constructs from the graveyard and activate Construct’s effect. It provides OTK scenarios by putting extra damage on the board. Recursion of fusion monsters causes the more frequent recursion of Shaddoll spells and traps for control. Call of the Haunted is also a really good opening with a Kuribandit.

Naturally, the next topic is Kuribandit. Kuribandit is an interesting card, which I previously hadn’t liked, but after playing multiple matches and at our local tournament with it I’ve adapted to how to use the card. I only run 2 because I have no room for the 3rd and also because I can’t bear to imagine drawing 2 copies at the same time. Kuribandit, in short, kicks starts the deck into overdrive. You’re almost guaranteed a Spell or Trap when using it, and if for some reason you don’t hit a Spell or Trap you probably hit multiple Shaddolls yielding massive advantage. With the addition of so many powerful Spells and Traps as well as defense into the deck, the card works much more naturally. I don’t think I would run the card if I wasn’t running so many trap cards. As a side note, I side out Bandit when going second (unless my opponent is running a really slow deck, which pretty much doesn’t exist in this format), giving a really easy siding slot during game 2 or 3. Speaking of going second, I tend to choose going first with this build because going first with Kuribandit or Sanctum is really powerful.

Side Decking:

Qliphorts: 

  • Side in: 3 MST, 1 Shaddoll Dragon, 3 Mistake
  • Side out: 2 Kuribandit, 1 Soul Charge, 2 Sinister Shadow Games, 1 Call of the Haunted.

Burning Abyss:

  • Really depends on what kind of build they’re running, but most likely Stormforth for Bandit if going second. If they run Mask Change side in Mirror Force for Sinister. I’m not particularly worried about this match-up.

Nekroz:

  • Side in: 1 Artifact Lancea, 1 Raigeki, 2 The Monarchs Stormforth (for Djinn lock), 3 Mistake
  • Side out: 1 Artifact Scythe, 2 Kuribandit, 1 Felis, Lightsworn Archer, 2 Sinister Shadow Games, 1 Call of the Haunted

HEROs:

  • Side in: 1 Artifact Lancea, 1 Shaddoll Dragon, 1 Raigeki, 2 De-Fusion, 2 Mirror Force
  • Side out: 1 Artifact Scythe, 1 Felis, Lightsworn Archer, 2 Kuribandit, 2 Sinister Shadow Games, 1 Call of the Haunted

Everything else is a little more up in the air.

QOTW? Question of the Week:

There’s seems to be a lot of interest in Ritual Beasts at my locals. I’ve been using them a lot and have almost acquired the whole deck myself, so would you be interested in a Ritual Beast deck profile?

Written by: Kyle Oliver