Deck Profile: Nekroz (post 11/9/15 Ban List)

Now that the deck is super cheap I’ve been playing around with it a lot for fun.

If anyone is looking for a budget deck, then this is really the way to go right now. The only expensive card in the deck is Nekroz of Valkyrus and by expensive I mean 10 to 15 dollars. For a budget deck, it’s actually really fun, and competitive. The deck takes a lot of time to get used to in my opinion if you aren’t too familiar with using Nekroz with Shurit now banned because making ritual summons is a lot more elaborate and purpose driven, unlike before where making a ritual summon was pretty easy and forgiving. Now the deck is a lot more skillful, but still as potent as ever.

I have looked through some other Nekroz builds, post ban list, and I see a lot of the same, so I decided to try a little bit of a different approach so the deck would be more fun. With that I have a rather weird looking Nekroz build with a lot of tech, so here we go!

Monsters: (27)

  • 1 Genex Controller
  • 1 Exa, Enforcer of Nekroz
  • 2 Gishki Chain
  • 1 Atlantean Dragoons
  • 2 Dance Princess of Nekroz
  • 2 Great Sorcerer of Nekroz
  • 3 Manju of the Ten Thousand Hands
  • 2 Genex Undine
  • 2 Gishki Vision
  • 1 Deep Sea Diva
  • 1 Nekroz of Decisive Armor
  • 1 Nekroz of Trishula
  • 3 Nekroz of Valkyrus
  • 1 Nekroz of Brionac
  • 1 Nekroz of Catastor
  • 1 Nekroz of Unicore
  • 2 Nekroz of Clausolas

Spells: (13)

  • 3 Instant Fusion
  • 1 Gold Sarcophagus
  • 1 Preparation of Rites
  • 1 Salvage
  • 3 Nekroz Mirror
  • 1 Nekroz Kaleidoscope
  • 3 Nekroz Cycle

Traps: (0)


Extra Deck: (15)

Fusion: (3)

  • 1 Panzer Dragon
  • 2 Elder Entity Norden

Synchro: (6)

  • 1 Shooting Quasar Dragon
  • 1 Star Eater
  • 1 Leo, the Keeper of the Sacred Tree
  • 1 HTS Psyhemuth
  • 2 Herald of the Arch Light

XYZ: (6)

  • 1 Number 101: Silent Honor ARK
  • 1 Castel, the Skyblaster Musketeer
  • 1 Diamond Dire Wolf
  • 1 Daigusto Emeral
  • 1 Abyss Dweller
  • 1 Gagaga Cowboy

Compared to previous builds, I did some stuff that’s a little weird. I went full in on the Nekroz monsters of the deck, as opposed to using Performages, which I’ve seen a lot of. I opted to run more copies of the Nekroz non-ritual monsters as well as a copy of Nekroz of Catastor to provide a pretty solid base for ritual tribute as well as rank 4 XYZ toolboxing. In combination with Instant Fusion the deck has a robust backup engine in a pinch.

Diva Engine:

After scouring over a lot of other build before I started my venture into this deck a couple weeks back, I saw most build where running the Deep Sea Diva plus Gishki Vision mini-engine, and for good reason. In lieu of Nekroz of Shurit being banned the deck was looking for a monster that could be used as a full ritual tribute and Gishki Vision can be used as a full tribute for a WATER ritual monster’s summon. What makes is a better choice over say Gishki Shadow, is that Gishki Vision can be summoned by Deep Sea Diva, which is not that spectacular until you know that you can synchro with a Diva and a Vision for Herald of the Arch Light, one of the most impressive monsters you can summon in any ritual deck. (It’s especially goo to summon in properly because that means you can revive it with Norden and re-use its effect again when detached from an XYZ monster) I had played around with builds running Deskbot 3 and 1 in order to summon Herald of the Arch Light, but the Diva engine is simply better because on top of the Herald play you also get to run Gishki Vision, which makes Ritual summoning pretty easy.

To go along with this engine I added 1 copy of Salvage. Salvage can recur both Diva or Gishki Vision, and it can also recur Nekroz of Clausolas and Great Sorcerer of Nekroz (also Genex Undine, but I only run 1 Controller, so getting back Undine is rarely useful). If you get back a combination of Vision and Clausolas you can use Clausolas to grab a Nekroz Cycle from the deck and essentially do a 1 card ritual summon from your graveyard using the Vision you also just got back and the Cycle.

I toyed around with some builds running Atlanteans in order to search Diva and Vision with Atlantean Dragoons, but I never got a build that work out well enough. In the end I only run the 1 Dragoons, but even with just the one you can do a ton of important and powerful plays. Undine can send Dragoons and grab a Deep Sea Diva, Gishki Vision or a Gishki Chain and you can later use Instant Fusion and Norden to revive Dragoons for an Abyss Dweller, and if you detach the Dragoons you’ll get Dragoons effect because Abyss Dweller is a WATER monster. You can also tribute your excess Genex Controllers you get off of Genex Undine’s effect for the effect of Nekroz of Valkyrus. The Genex Controllers and Genex Undines make is a lot easier to summon Nekroz of Gungnir, which I’m not running in this build, because they’re level 3, so you can run that if you want. Level 3 monsters also make Valkyrus easier to summon in combination with the 5’s Catastor and Exa, so you can combine Undine/Controller with one of the two for Valkyrus. An interesting way to do a play would be to have Undine send Dance Princess and you add a Controller. Use Catastor to revive the Dance Princess and then use Nekroz Mirror to summon Valkyrus banishing Catastor and Tributing the Controller. You now can tribute the Dance Princess and Undine for Valk’s effect, to draw 2 then get back Catastor with Dance Princess’ effect, which you can later use to revive the Dance Princess again. The play is pretty elaborate, but I think it helps to get the point across that this deck can do a lot of very complex but strong plays.

Different than Normal Things:

A couple things I’m running aren’t standard by previous standards, but I think it’s a good idea to always be rethinking deck standards, especially when such drastic changes have been hoisted onto a deck. With the new banlist I thought it would be wise to rethink the ritual spell line-up firstly, and I also figured since Brionac and Unicore where now both at 1, a different form of recursion would have to be made or the deck would run out of steam quickly and get bottlenecked into options because of lack of searching power.

For the ritual spells I quickly found that I really never wanted Nekroz Kaleidoscope. With Unicore at 1 it’s almost always inferior to the other two mirrors. The only time I use Kaleidoscope are when I’m desperate and it’s the mirror I drew, to summon my Unicore in the classic way, or to OTK by summoning 2 ritual monsters. In every case, I generally only used a Kaleidoscope once in that duel if at all, and technically the 1 copy can be recurred with Unicore or Preparation of Rites if I’m really desperate, and you can even backwards toolbox Unicore using Dance Princess of the Nekroz in most instances to recur the Kaleidoscope. Never done the last one before, but the option has crossed my mind.

Now, with 1 less mirror than standard that only leaves 5 mirrors, which isn’t a whole lot, meaning I should add copies of some of the others. At first thought, I had figured using Nekroz Cycle would be really difficult, so I tested with that at one, but then once I had changed my goals for the deck and started to play more deliberately, it became clear that Nekroz Cycle was actually really important. Now, more than ever you discard the Nekroz monsters, leaving yourself with less ritual monsters in the hand. This means more often than not, the monster you want to summon is probably in the graveyard. With the addition of the Sea Serpent engine and Gishki Vision being now super accessible, Nekroz Cycle became even more powerful and an obvious 3-of.

For Nekroz Mirror, it seemed to be the most obvious  mirror that was most usable. More than any of the other mirrors, Nekroz Mirror is the most likely to be live and is the most likely you’ll be using early game. The later in the game it gets, the more likely you have cards to banish in the graveyard making it even easier to use late game. In addition, I want to banish monsters in this deck now on purpose in order to backwards toolbox them, due to the new engine I implemented using the pure Nekroz monsters, specifically Dance Princess of the Nekroz. Typically, in the early game I try to get Nekroz of Brionac and dump it to the graveyard as quickly as possible, because from their I can banish it and recur it with Dance Princess or simply grab it back with Unicore and banish the Unicore and recur it with Dance Princess. The Unicore play in particular is nice because if you do Brionac to add Unicore and then pitch Unicore to get back the Brionac, you can use Nekros Mirror to tribute a Dance Princess and banish the in grave Unicore to summon a Valkyrus and the Dance Princess’ effect will activate to get back the Unicore, generally keeping you card count up.

To further search with the deck I also run 2 Great Sorcerer and 1 Exa. Exa can now search viable monsters, unlike in previous build because I run both Nekroz of Catastor and Decisive Armor, both being Dragons, and specifically Catastor being infinitely more useful with the addition of more non-ritual Nekroz monsters. As a random extra, I added a Panzer Dragon to my Extra Deck just in case I want to summon Catastor with Kaleidoscope, and because Panzer Dragon has some small utility with Instant Fusion.

The Extra Deck:

The Extra Deck isn’t really anything new for Nekroz. You run your standard line of Kaleidoscope targets: Quasar, Star Eater, Leo, Psyhemuth, Panzer Dragon and Herald. Psyhemuth for that extremely off chance I want to summon Brionac with Kaleidoscope and because with Deep Sea Diva, the most likely Synchro number this deck can make is 6, so I can legitimately summon it. Similarly, you can summon Star Eater and Leo, the Keeper of the Sacred Tree with Diva and Trishula or Valkyrus respectively. That isn’t all that unlikely since you can summon Diva and bring out Vision and then tribute it for a Trishula or Valkyrus easily setting up that Synchro option if you really want it, though I almost never go for it.

The Nordens are pretty obligatory with the Instant Fusions. The Second Herald is for the extreme off chance I want to summon Unicore with Kaleidoscope and summon a Herald manually with Diva in the same duel. Hasn’t happened yet though, so I may drop the second copy in favor of another Rank 4 XYZ.

The Rank 4 XYZ are just the most basic toolbox for this deck.

  • Abyss Dweller is my most frequented monster in the Extra Deck. It gives the attack boost and “negates” a lot of important monsters in the meta, as always. It’s integral in the Kozmo match-up because you can summon it and Valkyrus (or any Ritual in the deck with at least 2600 ATK) and attack over a Kozmo Dark Destroyer and Abyss Dweller will prevent its effect giving you a pretty hefty advantage.
  • Second in line is Castel, the Skyblaster Musketeer. The obvious super-high utility Rank 4 XYZ monster, a staple in almost every Extra Deck that even has a small glimmer of a chance of summoning a Rank 4 XYZ. An out to floodgates and any random nuisance, and also a really cheeky way to flip Manju face-down and flip summon him to get his effect twice.
  • Number 101: Silent Honor ARK is probably third. 101 has the bonus of being WATER, which means it gets a boost from Abyss Dweller and is just a little more defensively capable when compared to Castel, so rather than running two Castel 101 makes a strong enough case for running 1 – 1 rather than 2 – none. 101 also has the highest base attack of all the Rank 4 XYZ in this current Extra Deck, which might be relevant.
  • Daigusto Emeral has always been a staple for Nekroz, especially now since you only have1 Unicore and Brionac. Sometimes you can get in a hole where you might lose access to the 2 and you’ll want to shuffle them back or maybe you just get really later game and you want to put your options back into the deck. The more I play the deck though, the less often I use Emeral because I become more efficient with combos and deliberate.
  • Diamond Dire Wolf is interesting. It’s one of the only Rank 4 XYZ that deals with face-down cards, so that alone makes it go into the Extra Deck, but in addition he can clear your own field letting you search with your ritual spells. I’ve found that I’m not needing the graveyard search effect of the ritual spells all that much in this build, so it doesn’t come up as often as when Nekroz where better, but the idea is still relevant.
  • Last is Cowboy because it can burn for game.


As always, feel free to tell me any thoughts below!

Written by: Kyle Oliver

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