Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Defining the Metagame: Kagero

Hello guys, Homura here again. It has been a while since I wrote some stuff about Kagero, so I decided to write one today. So without further ado, let's get started!

Every time I went to look up for tourney reports, whatever I saw there were always the same thing: It's either Kagero, Royal Paladins, or Shadow Paladins. Where are the Limit Breakers? Aren't they're supposed to 'Break the Limits'? Why am I still seeing the same old clans since a year ago? WHY!?!?!?!?!?

The answer is simple - consistency. In almost every TCG that I played, consistency always plays the most important part in a game. More often a win or loss is determined by the consistency of your deck (of course plus your skills). Kagero is one of the clans that really represents consistency to its fullest, IMO. Even though BT-06 gives us Limit Breakers, but yet Kagero still manage to stay at the top, without the help of any LB units.

I'm still a badass after so long, RAWR!!!

The epitome of consistency in Kagero is their current strongest/stablest deck of all time - Dragonic Overlord The End. Why? because the deck combines all factors of consistency in one whole package. Here are some staples in the deck that made is super consistent and stable:

Lizard Solider Conroe: Nuff said, the best G0 in the game.

Dragon Monk Gojo - 7k booster, perfect for creating 18k lines with the G3s, and 20k with Burning Horn. Also helps you to cycle cards.

Demonic Dragon Mage, Kinalla - Board control, breaking magic numbers for a cheap cost of CB1.

Burning Horn Dragon - Permanent 12k attacker during your turn. Sets up 17k, 18k, and 20k magic numbers.

Berserk Dragon - One of the best G2s we have. Board control, creates presence and removes interceptors.

Dragonic Overlord - God before he gets angry (LOL!). 11k tanker with a scary skill. Nuff said.

Dragonic Overlord The End - God when angry. even more tank with 13k, and when he stands again, it's usually 'THE END'.

So you see? Card cycling, cost-free power-ups, board control, defensive and offensive power, card advantage, tutoring all-in-one. What more you want? With all these goodies still available for Kagero, unless Bushiroad decides to come up with a super-crazy-insane-imba LB unit with 13k base power, DOTE will still remain the top of the ladder of competitive decks. With most LB units being at 10k base power, there's a reason why DOTE eats them for lunch (munch munch!).

DOTE aside, there's now a new contender to possibly join DOTE in the competitive scene to be a semi-meta, if not meta deck. Enter the new Kagero LB unit - Dragonic Lawkeeper.

This firebreathing dragon here sports 10k base power like most G3s, but the upside is it has a very funky LB skill. For a cost of CB1, you may bind all your opponent's Rear Guards for that turn. This skill actually has its own pros and cons. The good thing is you can remove Interceptors away to force your opponent to dump more hand cards. Topped up with Lawkeeper's automatic power increase when your opponent has 2 or less RG when it attacks, it can really dish out high amounts of damage. The downside is during your End Phase where you used this skill, up to 4 bound RGs comes back. It means that your opponent can rearrange their formation, and any units with CIP skills will activate again.

So, the key to using this skill is about timing. Basically, you only use Lawkeeper's skill when you have a chance to deal high power attacks. With that, you can force your opponent to dump hand cards, possibly removing higher level threats, and you will only need to deal with the same units once you end your turn.

I'm still tinkering around with Lawkeeper, and I came out with a prototype deck (with proxies) and modifying it from there. Truthfully speaking, I actually made a lot of people pissed off and frustrated because of Lawkeeper's LB skill (heh!). What you should put in your deck, I'll leave it for your own, but I'll show you some long-forgotten cards that will fit this deck superbly. Behold!

Yes, Dual Axe Archdragon and Lizard Solider Raopia. I bet you don't even bother playing these guys before Lawkeeper was previewed. All these 3 units share a common skill, whereby they all get a power boost when your opponent has 2 or less RGs. When combo-ed with Lawkeeper's skill, you can literally tell your opponent "In Your Face!!!" when you smash into the red zone with 3 lines of 20k++ power attacks. Luckily I still keep my playset of Dual Axe Archdragons (got them when they're like 10 Malaysian Ringgit per piece LOL!), because now this card will be a hot stuff (very hard to find them because nobody is opening BT-03 anymore).

So in short, DOTE will still dominate the meta until something stupid happens, and Lawkeeper will definitely gring a new twist to the existing Kagero decks out there. So remember to try Lawkeeper out, and let me know how you feel about it! If you want some sample decklists for any Kagero decks, just drop me a comment and I'll do a post or reply you with it (I can build almost any Kagero decks heh!). Until then, this is Homura, signing out for the day, and back to sleep in the office....


  1. Hey there, I like all the information in the various posts, I was wondering though if you could point me in the direction that you found the tournament reports, I would love to gather some information for myself from it.

  2. Hello there, thanks for your feedback. May I ask what do you mean by the direction of the tournament reports?

  3. What I meant was where you found them, like what site or blog or what have you, basically just a round about way of saying what site you found them, or even what you searched to find them because I didn't know if you wanted to give me an exact place so I wanted to request even a hint as to where to find it. I would be really appreciative if you could give me an exact site or blog or what have you. I kind of wanted to look at builds, archetypes, number of cards each deck used etc. I like the info you gave, but I like having it in front of me, as well as I might find some other interesting facts while I am searching around. I really like my information especially in card games, I am a much more analytical player than gut feeling though that comes up, so i like to read rulebooks, tourney reports basically anything having to do with whatever is at hand which is why i like reading blogs such as this one.

  4. I see. Truthfully speaking, the posts here are all based on my own experience in playing Vanguard. The tourney reports are literally those that I played at my local shops. As for the decklists posted here, those are also my own creations geared to my own playstyle (sometimes only a skeleton to give a basic idea of how is the deck going to be played).

    I did refer to other blogs from my friends, oversea players, and also forums. I guess I can show you some links where I got my info from: (my friend Rauzes' blog) (official site where I can refer to decklists)
    Vanguard Rider forums (try google Vanguard Rider and you can link to their forums)
    Some Japanese blogs which I forgot the links (accidentally bumped into them while browsing for inspiration LOL!)

    I guess these helps a bit if not a lot. Please do continue to support my blog, give out requests for posts that you wish to see ^^

  5. Do you have Kagero (DOTE version) deck list?

  6. So far, your focus has been mainly on the larger Japanese collection of Vanguard, and I was wondering if you could post an alternative look at the English side, with its limited card selection?

    Since DOTE is clearly not available for the English-playing community, what do you think would make a great contender of an English Kagero build?

    1. Hi there Morris, and welcome to my blog. Yeah, so far my focus is mostly on the Japanese side of Vanguard, because I'm a Japanese player.

      You're right that the English side of Vanguard has very limited selections, hence the inability for Kagero to shine over there. Since you've mentioned it, I think I should write something to cater to the English-playing community as well, since it can help as well as giving me more ideas to write more.

      As for your question regarding which Kagero has a chance to get something in the English environment, I would say the more stable builds is either Blazing Flare Dragon, or the infamous Goku-Blade that earned its title as one of the most powerful Kagero decks out there pre-Booster 5.

  7. Hey there,
    I'd like to request help;

    Please help me build a Lawkeeper Deck..
    Given the current Vanguard English cards.
    Thank you :)