Here’s the Sylvan deck I ended with for my testing for the Sylvan podcast.
I was incredibly busy this week. A fellow manager at my work got kidney stones and was incapacitated for three days while going about through doctors and getting it diagnosed and getting meds so he could still work. With that I had to work a lot extra this week, plus school and plus podcasting and dueling with this deck. Given that explanation, I haven’t had nearly any time to get any other kind of article ready so you’ll have to settle with a simple deck profile.
So, Sylvans… once you here the podcast it will become immediate apparent that neither me or Matt is all too fond of them. They are very good though once Primal Origin comes out, only really missing maybe 1 card to push them over the top. Why a post Primal Origin deck list you ask? Because the deck it crappy before that. Here’s the deck list:
- 3 Sylvan Hermitree
- 3 Sylvan Sagequoia
- 2 Sylvan Bladefender
- 3 Sylvan MarshawnLeaf
- 2 Lonefire Blossom
- 3 Sylvan Komushroomo
- 1 Spore
- 3 Sylvan Peaskeeper
- 2 Sylvan Cherubsprout
- 3 Copy Plant
- 3 Sylvan Charity
- 2 Super-Solar Nutrient
- 3 Miracle Fertilizer
- 3 Mount Sylvania
- 2 Dimensional Prison
- 2 Sylvan Blessing
- 1 Star Eater
- 1 Leo, Keeper of the Sacred Tree
- 1 Stardust Dragon
- 1 No. 62: Galaxy-Eyes Prime Photon Dragon
- 1 No. 107: Galaxy-Eyes Tachyon Dragon
- 1 Hieratic Sun Dragon Overlord of Heliopolis
- 1 Divine Dragon Knight Felgrand
- 1 Alsei, the Sylvan High Protector
- 1 Oreia, the Sylvan High Arbiter
- 1 Mecha Phantom Beast Dracossack
- 1 No.11: Big Eye
- 1 No. 101: Silent Honor ARK
- 1 Downerd Magician
- 1 Wind-Up Zenmaines
- 1 Slacker Magician
Where to begin about this deck? It’s much more complex than you’d think. In order to play well with this deck you have to have a play in mind every time you make a move or else you will inevitably fail. I’ll start with the most important mind sets of the deck. You have to be willing to stack the deck using the field spell, Charity and Blessing even if it is a technical “neg one”. In addition, you must always know exactly what monsters you want to be excavating at all times and what you’ll do with each when excavated. The reason being that otherwise you’ll quickly run out of card advantage and not produce plays that amount to much of anything. Of all the new archetypes, (such as Bujin, Ghostricks, etc.) this deck has by far the steepest learning curve. That meaning it takes the longest time to learn and is the most difficult to wield.
When taking your first turn in this deck you’re looking for one of two things to make your opening hand potentially strong: Lonefire Blossom or Sylvan Komushroomo. Lonefire can also be summoned through Super Solar Nutrient and any Level 1 Plant: Peaskeeper, Cherubsprout, Spore and Copy Plant, totaling 9 Level 1’s.
Lonefire allows you to make first turn Hermitree plays, which generally can result in Rank 8 XYZ. The most ideal play for your first turn is to have a Lonefire Blossom, Mount Sylvania and any Plant-type monster. Here’s the main play:
- Summon Lonefire, tribute to summon Sylvan Hermitree.
- Play Mount Sylvania and send a Plant in hand to the graveyard to top deck Sylvan Cherubsprout.
- Hermitree’s effect excavates Cherubsprout and then draws 1 card.
- Cherubsprout summon a Copy Plant from the deck.
- Copy Plant copies Hermitree to become Level 8.
- XYZ for Divine Dragon Knight Felgrand.
This play can be altered in a lot of ways, but generally if I’m going first I do this play. You can swap the Cherubsprout in the play for a Peaskeeper to revive the Lonefire to get Copy Plant or another Hermitree to attempt to draw more cards, but the reason I don’t usually do this is because I want to save as many copies of Peaskeeper to be excavated as possible since it’s probably the most powerful of the Sylvans when excavated. I also don’t usually summon a second Hermitree for the same reason, I want to save the copies in my deck for when I revive Lonefires later. It wouldn’t hurt to summon it though, leaving at least one in the deck for later. On another note, keep in mind this play can be done using Lonfire and Charity or Blessing to top deck Peaskeeper or Cherubsprout as well. The play can also be done using Sagequoia too, but doesn’t provide the free draw like Hermitree and only results in a Dracossack or an Oreia, the Sylvan High Arbiter, neither of which are as defensively as effective as Felgrand. Oreia will provide great mass removal if you’re going second though.
The reason I tend to end with Felgrand is because the deck has literally zero presence during the opponent’s turn. Felgrand gives you the only ounce of presence this deck’s going to get. The only other cards in the deck that allow you to play during your opponent’s turn are Stardust Dragon, (which can only be summoned by excavating a Spore randomly) Dimensional Prison and Sylvan Blessing (which doesn’t really affect the opponent that much). Upon first play of Sylvans I felt like I wouldn’t want to get rid of my Hermitrees or Sagequoias, but trust me when I say that’s it’s a necessity to XYZ into Rank 8’s and 7’s if you want to win with this deck. Other than destroying by battle, Sylvans really lack effective ways to deal with the opponent’s field. You can use Komushroomo and MarshawnLeaf to destroy cards, but unless you’re really lucky, they’re both practically limited to one per turn. Both the Sylvan XYZ though provide extremely evasive removal that can break almost every setup in the game since almost everything is vulnerable to returning to the hand or the deck. And don’t expect to be breaking cards like Battlin’ Boxer Lead Yolk or Bujin Yamato with setup with attacking or MarshawnLeaf. I think it’s fairly clear that that won’t work.
I think most of my card choices explain themselves for anyone with mild experience with the deck so I’ll I only explain the cards I think are a little less conventional.
Starting from the top of deck list is Sylvan Bladefender. This card is actually really cool. When I got some for the pre-release I thought it was a totally garbage card, but it’s actually a really powerful asset. What Bladefender provides is really just expendable-ness. I use it to maintain advantage and with cards and cycle it. In most instances you randomly get it into you hand when it’s excavated over the course of the game. From their I usually send it to the graveyard to activate Mount Sylvania’s top decking effect. I also like to top deck it with Charity and Blessing to continually add it back to my hand. The icing on the cake is its 1900 ATK, so in a pinch you have a beater, which saves me all the time. It’s also the strong monster you can summon with Super-Solar Nutrient.
Copy Plant I think is a staple for this deck. For those unaware of why to run it, it essentially provides you an all access pass into your extra deck. You can Normal Summon when you have either a leftover Hermitree or Sagequoia and it gives you a Rank 8 or 7 respectively in the most simple of plays. It works in the more complex plays like I mentioned early to make Rank 7 and 8’s. It’s also a Plant, so it can get excavated easily, and also revived with Miracle Fertilizer. It’s less than Level 4 so you can revive it with Peaskeeper, allowing you to get a level 7 or 8 with Peaskeeper when you normally couldn’t. It’s Level 1 normally making it a Super-Solar Nutrient target. It is the ultimate in malleability in this deck.
Next is the two random Dimensional Prisons. It’s kind of hard for me to piece together why I did this, but here I go. I needed some kind of disruption during the opponent’s turn, but the deck can’t allow all that many traps because you want a lot of Plants in the deck so when you excavate you hit Plant monsters. This left very little room for traps, 2 places to be exact. It couldn’t be a card like Bottomless Trap Hole or Solemn Warning, the staples one would go to first, because they require you to have them set before they can solve your problems. If I’m looking at already present monsters on the opponent’s board, you’re already in bad shape, because playing catch-up with Sylvans is tough. This isn’t helped by cards like Bottomless and Warning because they can never help you after the fact. For the most part you need cards to protect your setup, which means cards that respond to aggression. The first thing I tested was Mirror Force, which worked out quite great. What I quickly realized though, was that in most instances when I used Mirror Force, it was against one monster. The second thing I noticed was that I frequently didn’t use Mirror Force because the attacking monster was evasive, and destroying it wasn’t enough. Cards like Dracossack, Lead Yolk and Garunix, to name a few. These where cards I wanted to go away, and to go away forever. With those combined facts, I decided it simply made more sense to run 2 Dimensional Prisons instead of Mirror Force.
As far as things I wouldn’t mind in place of the Dimensional Prisons, my best second option would be 1 Breakthrough Skill and 1 Book of Moon in their place. Effect negation is really nice with the Breakthrough, especially in the current meta. Breakthrough also aids against evasive monsters with its graveyard effect. Book of Moon is simply the best card in the game, and I feel it needs no explanation. I may just end up adding it anyways.
Other Interesting Things:
You can banish Sagequoia for Spore to make Spore Level 8 so you can XYZ for 8. Sweet.
Setup multiple Miracle Fertilizers to summon Oreia, the Sylvan High Arbiter and then use Oreia to return you own Miracle Fertilizers to hand with his effect to play them again and summon another XYZ monster and excavate a whole bunch of stuff. I almost wanted to run Fiendish Chain and Call of the Haunted among other things just so I could bounce them with Oreia’s effect.
Charity to top deck Sagequoia, summon something that excavates the Sagequoia to add Charity back to hand?
As a rule of thumb, as soon as a Level 3 or lower Sylvan on the field has expended its excavation effect, send it from the field to the graveyard with Mount Sylvania. Example: You flip a Komushroomo and excavate 5. Play Mount Sylvania and send that Komushroomo to the graveyard to top deck.
I really wanted to run Forbidden Lance because it can sometimes be hard to play through a lot of back row and early turns and it aids that. If I keep toying around with my build or maybe if you want to build the deck I suggest testing out Lance and seeing how you like it.
If you want to run this deck right now, as in pre Primal Origin, I suggest maxing on Bladefender, running One for One, a third Super-Solar and more traps. Maybe some Terraformings too.
Last thing, I’ve gotten some pretty good replays stored up for this deck, so if you’d like to see it in action I can attempt to work something together and post it on our YouTube channel if you’d like, just comment below. Comment anything else you’d like as well, I will surely respond back as long as your comment elicits response of course.
QOTW? Question of the Week:
What’s your opinion on Sylvans? Do you like them? If you had all the cards for any deck, would you want to play them? Do you think they have the potential to be teir 1?
Written by: Kyle