Thursday, June 21, 2012

After the Storm: Deck Tiers pt. 2

Continuing from the previous article, today i'll be giving all of you a list of the Tier 2 decks in the current meta. So what is Tier 2? Compared to Tier 1 decks, Tier 2 decks lacks a bit of stability and consistency, and their winning rates in tournaments are also not that high compared to the Tier 1 decks out there. However, they are still considered as competitive decks and are the top contenders for Tier 1 slots in the future.

Below are my personal ratings of the top Tier 2 decks out there. Please have a look and see whether my analysis is similar to your or not. Enjoy!

Oracle Think Tank - Tsukuyomi / Amaterasu

Since the debut of Shadow Paladins, OTT is no longer a member of the 'Big 3'. Comparing all the builds available for them, only the Tsukuyomi / Amaterasu build is tourney-worthy. And frankly speaking, due to the lack of support for OTT after BT-03, they have become very predictable, and most players already know how to handle them. Yes, having a hand of more than 10 cards seems good, but with 20k and 21k power lines being so easy to make nowadays, after your opponent ends their turn, you might have only less than 5 hand cards left.


Not to say they are totally unplayable now, just that they are really lacking something, for example maybe a Limit Break, or Persona Blast (I won't say a Cross Rider, because that will make OTT broken). We still can see OTT winning tourneys, but not as often anymore. BT-07 is around the corner, bringing with them new support for Scarlet Witch Coco decks, so we shall see how it turns out. Is it the rise of the 'Soulless' era, or does OTT still need to fill their 'Soul'.
Rating: 4.0 / 5

Nova Grapplers - Dragon Kaiser

With the introduction of Beast God Azure Dragon, NG finally have access to tow sets of 11k power cards. This deck basically works the same like Asura Kaiser builds in the past, but with the added flavor of Persona Blast from Azure Dragon. With Azure Dragon included in the deck, they finally have the option to 'switch' into different builds while still using the same deck. Once you have depleted your pseudo Stand Triggers (via Asura Kaiser's skill), you can instantly switch to Azure Dragon, and continue to pressurize your opponent by threatening them with Azure Dragon's Persona Blast.

The core of the deck still retains, just that you'll have a better chance in late game compared to the past. If I am able to name a new deck as a Tier 1 deck, the closest for me should be Nova Grapplers. What they really need now is some form of card draw, others are quite decent already.
Rating: 4.2 / 5

Gold Paladins - Spectral Duke Dragon

Ah, another newcomer from EB-03. It seems like a lot of players out there are very eager to try out the new SDD build. I don't blame them because SDD looks pretty strong, as well as cool. Being able to Superior Call units during the Ride Phase, and Superior Call more units if you hit certain units from the previous call is not a joke. Their swarming rate is better than Blonde Ezel builds I would say, and it comes with cheaper costs as well. Also, being able to 'cheat' null guards is what makes SDD even scarier.

However, this only really looks good on paper. Despite having a good ride chain, and a strong LB, SDD is nowhere close to being a Tier 1 deck when Blonde Ezel and Garmore is still running around. Why? Because this deck lacks something really important - Power. SDD can only be a maximum of 11k at all times, and the best it can go with a boost, say Little Fighter, Tron, is only 21k (and that's if you have more Rear Guards than your opponent). Compared to Ezel and Garmore, which can hit absurdly high numbers, SDD really looks stupid in front of them.

Also, the moment you use SDD's Limit Break, you're actually putting yourself under a very big disadvantage, which is the lack of Rear Guards. A smart opponent will know how to play around with the LB, whereby they will focus all your attacks to SDD, leaving you with a dilemma of whether you want to spend your hand cards to guard (which leads to lesser units to call), or take damage to preserve board advantage (which leads to a faster defeat). So before you say SDD is strong, think twice.
Rating: 4.2 / 5

Narukami - Dragonic Kaiser Vermilion

Another newcomer that supposed to replace Kagero. But despite being so hyped, they are somewhat not performing at the moment. The good thing of playing Narukami is you can hit high power counts (which means this clan focuses in hitting the Vanguard hard and fast), but that's all they can do. Compared to Kagero, they don't have enough retiring power, and they don't have enough useful Rear Guards as support. Ultimately, their Grade 3 choices are so limited that if you don't play Kaiser Vermilion, it's very hard for your deck to be on even grounds with other decks.

Even with the help of Kaiser, you can only do that much. I'm not expecting people to be able to use Kaiser's LB more than 2 times in a game, and he being the only 11k power cards available, you're jeopardizing you defenses if you don't ride him. Thunder Break Dragon is our Trial Deck exclusive G3 Limit Breaker. But frankly speaking, it's CIP skill really is sub-par. If it says 'CB2: Retire one of your opponent's Rear Guards', it'll definitely be an auto-include. The other cards are also being 'so-so' with Breakthrough Dragon being the only possible staple in the deck besides Kaiser. Well, the good news is in three months time, Narukami will get their new reinforcements, so to all Narukami players out there (including myself), please be patient for the time being. We might be suffering now, but we'll definitely come back with a bigger and harder punch later!
Rating 4.0 / 5

Spike Brothers - Dudley Emperor / Juggernaut Maximum

With EB-03 bringing Spike's first Limit Breaker, the fearsome Demonic Lord, Dudley Emperor, Spike seems to have found their ideal finisher. Not long after their release, we can already see Spike decks featuring Dudley Emperor topping a few tournaments (which is something we seldom see besides the Dark Zone Tournament way back then). With DE included in the deck, the once-staple card, General Seyfried is no longer needed, because you can Superior Call whatever you want instead of hoping to trigger a G3 from your Twin Drive And being able to drop Dudley Dan off the deck, means that Dudley Emperor can hit 20 and 21k power lines easier now, compared to the maximum of 17k when boosting Seyfried.


Besides having access to Limit Break, EB-03 also gives them their G1 'tagging' unit - Reckless Express. The reason why is he that good is because he can work as both a decent booster and attacker. When you need the final push, sent him in front and SB for 12k, otherwise, being able to boost for 7k is not bad also. 'Tagging' units are good when paired with Dudley Emperor, because you're now able to reform your board position better. You can always make space for units that're better for the current situation when you 'tag' them away.

Though now you are giving away a little bit of speed compared to last time, but in return, you hit way more harder than before. Trust me, once you've mastered the playstyle of Spikes, you'll definitely be able to pose as a threat to most decks out there, because creating power lines is also what Spike Brothers do best.
Rating: 4.3 / 5 (being slightly higher than Nova Grapplers is they pack more punch!)

Here you go, my Top 5 Tier 2 decks in the current metagame. Of course they are still a few more that I wanted to mention, but there's no time at the moment. But I'll be doing a continuation if you guys want it. In the next article, I'll be mentioning the Tier 3 decks for the current metagame. Until then, this is Homura signing out!


  1. What about angel feathers?

  2. In my opinion, AF is also Tier 2 for the moment, as well as most of the other decks out there. But if I were to continue to fit them in the same article, it'll be very messy.

    So, if you all want more elaboration on this topic, I can continue talking about the other tier 2 decks out there since I do have a plan to do so (just no time to do it...)

  3. I have been trying out SDD ,emperor ,and azure
    In my opinion Spectral duke dragon can be very good in the right hands
    Azure seems great to me as it gets your opponent to keep on guarding XD

    Emperor just owns some decks can even out speed decks like MLB