As a long-time TCG player, I know how powerful That Grass Looks Greener can be. Not only that, but my current deck in the TCG is Lightsworns using That Grass Looks Greener, and it’s one of my favourite cards. Of course I had to try and build a deck abusing it in Duel Links. After a couple of false starts, I believe I’ve found something fun, interesting, and powerful - it may be a rogue contender in the upcoming KC Cup. This is my breakdown of That Grass Looks Greener Magnets, abusing Endless Trap Hell, and how I took it to King of Games on the second day of the season with less than 50 wins!
1x Gaia Plate the Earth Giant
A very powerful rock boss monster that’s quite easy to summon due to how much you dump into the grave. I only have 1 so I didn’t get to test with more copies, but I believe that 0 or 1 is fine, because it’s useful in playing through battle tricks like Mirror Wall, it empties our graveyard of fuel for our better cards. Reviving it with Release from Stone can be very powerful and steal games due to it’s massive damage potential though, so I like it where it is.
1x Valkyrion the Magna Warrior
This is your target for Delta The Magnet Warrior’s effect. Most importantly, it allows you to sack the ever-loving shit out of people because Delta The Magnet Warrior’s effect triggers when it’s sent to the grave from anywhere, including deck. This means a That Grass Looks Greener that mills 1 Delta The Magnet Warrior and 3 other Magnet Warriors and no Valkyrion the Magna Warrior can summon Valkyrion the Magna Warrior straight from the deck, immediately paying back the -1 that is activating That Grass Looks Greener. Playing more than 1 could work to ensure that your Delta The Magnet Warrior has a target for the summon effect in case you mill a Valkyrion the Magna Warrior, but it’s literally useless outside of being summoned by Delta The Magnet Warrior so I don’t advise that, and you can’t afford to summon two copies as you’ll burn up all your banish fodder. It’s not worth the massive minus that is summoning it the proper way, and if it’s not summoned the proper way it can’t be revived by Release from Stone or Tramid Pulse so it’s just fodder.
3x Delta the Magnet Warrior
Your second-best monster. It’s reasonably big and gets your rock monsters exactly where you want them - in the grave. Additionally, it floats into your thick daddy Valkyrion the Magna Warrior for massive pressure. Generally, you want to send your worst magnets first as they will be fodder, so Gamma The Magnet Warrior, then Beta The Magnet Warrior, lastly Beta The Electromagnet Warrior; however if you have the setup for it and know you’re playing a game where you don’t want to summon Valkyrion the Magna Warrior (like if you milled it, drew it, or your opponent doesn’t really care about how big it is, for example, if they’re playing ‘Temple Burn’) you can send Beta The Electromagnet Warrior first in order to revive it with Triamid Pulse or Release from Stone, as the extra searches of Magnets to your hand can really be important when every beatstick matters because they’re getting eaten by Lava Golem left and right.
1x Beta the Electromagnet Warrior
The best monster in your deck in every way. It searches another normal summon beater to your hand, and it can tag itself out into a bigger beater on your opponent’s turn. If you ever draw and normal summon Beta The Magnet Warrior, it literally would have just been better to draw and normal summon this guy and tag into Beta The Magnet Warrior. However, you more likely want to tag into Delta the Magnet Warrior, as it’s a 1-card setup for Triamid Pulse and Valkyrion the Magna Warrior that’s still a +1. You search a Delta the Magnet Warrior on normal summon, then tag into a Delta the Magnet Warrior on your opponent’s turn, milling Gamma The Magnet Warrior. Your Triamid Pulse is now live, being able to banish Gamma The Magnet Warrior and Beta the Electromagnet Warrior from the grave for a pop, and if you don’t need it you can just normal summon the Delta the Magnet Warrior you searched next turn and mill another Gamma The Magnet Warrior, and then you have 2 Gamma The Magnet Warrior and Beta the Electromagnet Warrior in grave as Delta the Magnet Warrior fodder to summon Valkyrion the Magna Warrior. I cannot overstate how good this card is, and I hope that someday we get a method of obtaining multiples.
3x Gamma The Magnet Warrior The bad one, but it’s a name and 1800 defence is like OK I guess. You pretty much always want to send this one with Delta the Magnet Warrior first so you don’t have to draw or use it or anything, but you can’t argue with another rock fodder name who has an attack value, because sometimes in those long grind games you actually need every normal summon you’ve got. It’s important to know when to stop tagging with Beta the Electromagnet Warrior and sending with Delta the Magnet Warrior because when your opponent uses Wall of Disruption for the third time, sometimes you need that last normal summon to seal the deal when they are finally out of cards. However, this one is the one you send first so he’ll rarely be the one to escort you to that victory. Instead, the honour goes to…
3x Beta The Magnet Warrior The good one. Kinda. It’s still a vanilla monster smaller than Gladiator Beast Laquari, but at least it’s bigger than Sergeant Electro. Even in defense mode it’s not a slouch, and it’s an important skill to be able to recognise when you need to and how you should put on those old school vanilla beats while setting all the backrow in your hand. It’s bigger than Delta the Magnet Warrior too, so when you have a good 4-5 rocks in grave and aren’t setting up Valkyrion the Magna Warrior and don’t want to mill with Delta the Magnet Warrior don’t be afraid to search this guy off his Electromagnet counterpart instead. You need a monster to damage your opponent’s life points and win the game because only traps doesn’t cut it outside stall and burn, and Beta The Magnet Warrior performs admirably.
Note: I didn’t include Alpha The Magnet Warrior because it’s stats are the worst of the three, you never want to summon Valkyrion the Magna Warrior without cheating him out, and if you used Delta the Magnet Warrior to summon Valkyrion the Magna Warrior there’s no way you still have the 3 vanilla Magnet Warriors in the grave to use Valkyrion the Magna Warrior’s other effect, and if you do there’s no need to and you’ve probably already won because your Triamid Pulses are gonna be live. If I wanted more monsters I might consider it, but a hand of 4 monsters is significantly worse than a hand of 4 spells and traps, because the latter hand can keep you alive until you draw a monster hopefully where all monsters is begging to get OTKed. Even 3 spells/traps and 1 monster is just about ideal, and I would say actually is ideal if your 1 monster is Beta the Electromagnet Warrior. Anyways, 10 normal summons out of 30 cards is enough to not brick into 0 that often, and 12 monsters out of 30 cards is still enough to hit 2-4 off by That Grass Looks Greener most of the time, which is about what you want. And speaking of only 12 monsters, onto the spells.
3x That Grass Looks Greener The heart and soul of the deck, and my muse. Dump a third of your deck into the graveyard, hope that the cards you put in there make up the -1 in card advantage that activating That Grass Looks Greener is. This is where the skill that I’ve been conspicuously avoiding mentioning comes in. That Grass Looks Greener is a -1, however, if you mill one thing that is plus, you’re already back in business and now your grave is set up. Endless Trap Hell requires 3 traps in grave and adds one randomly to your hand. This is what makes That Grass Looks Greener good. If you mill 3 traps, you can immediately recoup your losses by adding 1 back to hand, and make sure you aren’t punished by milling the rest by just putting them back into your deck. Even though the fact that the skill returns all traps is a glitch, that doesn’t really matter for this deck as returning a trap to hand is what’s so powerful. The rock monsters in grave are just a bonus, though it is one of the best feelings to mill Delta the Magnet Warrior and 3 magnets and just randomly explode with a Valkyrion the Magna Warrior out of your deck. This also is what gives the deck such and incredible grind game. You set up your grave with fodder for your powerful traps and boss monsters, and once your and your opponents’ decks are the same size, you add (at least) 3 defensive traps back to your hand or deck, which nearly always sets you up to go the distance if you have to mill your opponent. The second and third That Grass Looks Greener may be useless 90% of the time, but making sure you draw at least 1 that much more is worth it. This deck has individual cards that can pull the weight of two or three, so it’s OK to have a couple dead cards sometimes.
2x Super Rush Headlong Sadly, it’s not possible to have well-rounded defenses with only traps to make your skill maximally consistent, so this is where the quick-play spells come in. You only have 2 boss monsters with over 1700 attack, and once they are dealt with and your Release from Stone is gone, you can sometimes struggle to out consistent, mid to large-size beaters like the Hazy Flame monsters or Ancient Gear Knight. This fills that niche of beating Hazy Flame Sphynx and being an all-around solid card, as well as letting you offensively protect your own bosses from Super Rush Headlong, which is one of the few cards that beats your thick bosses while ignoring their sky-high effective attack stats.
2x Enemy Controller This is what beats the other most-common out to something as thick as Valkyrion the Magna Warrior - Cyber Angel Dakini. This is your answer to Cyber Angels as well as being a strong and flexible offensive or defensive card in many situations. If you’re missing some of the other expensive backrow, you can never go wrong with an extra Enemy Controller.
1x Attack the Moon! This is a nice card that your deck has access to due to being all rock monsters. It’s better than Fire Formation - Gyokkou and Cosmic Cyclone because while they are faster and work better alone, this gives potentially infinite backrow destruction out of one card. It’s useful against stall, burn, and other heavy backrow decks like Gladiator Beasts because you can just wiggle your monsters around instead of attacking until your opponent doesn’t have any more defensive backrow to set and the way is clear. However, it isn’t great against Cyber Angels and monster-focused Hazy Flame builds, so it’s not 100% necessary. It’s a flex spot. Now, for the traps.
2x Floodgate Trap Hole I hate to say it to all my fellow F2P players out there, but more than one Floodgate Trap Hole really does make a difference. I mentioned diversity in defence to make sure you can handle all situations when talking about quick-play spells, and Floodgate Trap Hole is just an incredibly powerful and focused card that fills a niche that no other trap, or card in general, does. You probably need no introduction on how to use this card, but it nigh-mandatory in matchups like Cyber Angels where you can’t rely on a monster plus a battle-oriented trap like Mirror Wall to hold the door, and it also has a lot of matchup utility versus anti-meta FTKs, burn, and other decks that field big boys but eventually run out of steam and ways to summon said big boys, like Red-Eyes Zombie Dragon and Ancient Gear Golem.
3x Triamid Pulse Finally, That Grass Looks Greener’s partner-in-crime and the other star of the show. No one thought this card was going to be competitive when we first saw the Tag Duel Tournament rewards, but I knew there might be a niche for it. How could anyone look at a trap that has an incredibly high ceiling that can target and destroy once per turn as long as you have fuel, and not see how powerful it is, even if it’s niche? That’s why I set out to make this card a home. If you use That Grass Looks Greener and mill 4 monsters and 2 traps and a Triamid Pulse, you can Endless Trap Hell, return the Triamid Pulse to hand, and have fuel to target and destroy any 2 cards on the field, as a theoretical scenario. It’s incredibly powerful and destroys grind games and honestly just most decks in general. Gladiator Beast monsters before they can attack, Sergeant Electro before it can lock something, Lava Golem before it burns you, key combo pieces or lockdown spells/traps like Temple of the Mind’s Eye or Xing Zhen Hu all fall before the Triamid Pulse. This card is the reason why you might not even want to summon Valkyrion the Magna Warrior. What’s stronger, a 3500 beatstick or destroying two of your opponent’s most important cards? It’s actually a tough call. And I haven’t even begun to talk about it’s other effect. If you mill or send Beta the Electromagnet Warrior, you can banish 2 to summon it for a neat +2 in card economy, indirectly setting up Triamid Pulse with fodder monsters again. Even just quick reviving a Delta the Magnet Warrior can be good, especially if your grave is set up right as reviving Delta the Magnet Warrior might lead to Gamma the Magnet Warrior if you had 5 rocks in there. This is also why I’m comfortable running the monster count that I am. That Grass Looks Greener + Triamid Pulse in hand can get you monsters while also offering incredibly solid defence, especially in tandem with your skill. This card is the other half of why That Grass Looks Greener is good, because when your skill means that activating That Grass Looks Greener isn’t minus, and this card can turn the free fuel in grave into advantage and disruption, you have a vicious grind game. You can even out pressure Cyber Angel ritual monsters through their protective ritual spells in grave. It’s amazing. And it also sets up the next card.
1x Release from Stone I wasn’t too keen on this card at first, because it’s a fat brick. However, due to the many ways you have of making it live, the fact that it’s a trap for the skill, and the reach it can give you in difficult and long games, I eventually came around. You have to worry about clogging your spell/trap zones with this, Attack the Moon!, and Triamid Pulse, plus all the backrow that has activation conditions that you run, but getting a rock monster from the banished zone back into circulation, being able to surprise slam someone with tons of damage from your banished Gaia Plate the Earth Giant, and being able to make sure you have a continuous flow of beaters to end the game while your clearing the way with Triamid Pulse is invaluable and worth the slot.
2x Wall of Disruption The battle trap to Floodgate Trap Hole’s on-summon trap. Running both this and Mirror Wall means you can be beaten too handily by decks that play around battle tricks, but your monsters are too frail to get by without some support. However, I like the support that is still useful at stalling the game when you don’t have a monster and are trying to get to one more. Also, this can really help if you’ve switched to a slow mill game plan. If you stop sending with Delta the Magnet Warrior, use your skill to load the deck back up, and use these and your Floodgate Trap Holes to make monsters useless you can deck out stuff like Ancient Gears, or you can run REZD out of meaningful threats. If they push too hard early you can neuter their REZD and Gozuki/Samurai Skull, and then run them out of Red-Eyes Spirits by popping with Triamid Pulse, and it’s an easy win from there.
1x Curse of Anubis The flexible trap. You want to keep a certain number of traps to make sure that your skill is live off That Grass Looks Greener (and versus stall so you can put back a meaningful-enough number of cards to not just get milled) and this is one of the better traps in the game. It’s easy for F2P players to obtain, is top-notch protection for your life points and little Magnets, and you can pull tricks like changing a Delta the Magnet Warrior to defense on your opponent’s turn to trigger Attack the Moon!
1x Windstorm of Etaqua The other flexible trap. Just about the same thing as Curse of Anubis, but affects Normal monsters as well. However, it can also be more easily played around, as it changes defense mode monsters back into attack mode. Just keep an eye on things when you’re playing on the back foot so you don’t get killed through it, and make sure to recognise when you need to flip it to play around Anti-Magic Arrows. Your opponent can only change the battle position or summon each monster once per turn, so if they flip a guy into attack mode you can change it back to defense without fear before the Battle Phase.
Literally whatever you want. You won’t make use of any of it, but if your opponent sees 30 cards, Odion and a full extra deck they’ll be that much more confused by what type of deck you are running and are that much more likely to misplay. I definitely had one player rage quit against me because I set 2 cards, ended my turn and they must have assumed I was stall based on the deck size and character.
That’s it for the decklist. I’ve toyed with a lot of other cards as well, but this is the list that won me a 5-streak to KoG and is about what I’ll stick with going into the future. Backrow and tech can be shuffled around some, but the monster core is pretty solid so I’d need a breakthrough to change something up there. Now, I’ll go over matchups for the aspiring player.
I’ll go down the top contenders from the MCS as those are the most relevant, but I’ll also include observations from my King of Games run and testing.
1. Gladiator Beasts
A skill-intensive matchup. As you both are control decks, the one who strikes first is the one who usually loses. However, if you let them be, they will eventually piece together contact fusions and you might just lose to a Gladiator Beast Heraklinos with 3 cards in hand. You need to be able to read and play around backrow, and know when to pressure and when to stand back. Triamid Pulse is very strong when popping monsters, as they don’t really have an answer without getting an attack through and you can run them out of normal summons. Once they are top-decking and don’t have any monsters left, you need to push them hard and force them to use their backrow to live extra turns instead of to trigger Gladiator Beasts’ tag effects. Overall, I went about even versus this very common matchup, but I know I started climbing with a negative win rate due to misplays and ended with a positive win rate due to becoming comfortable with the matchup.
2. Cyber Angels
This matchup, while no joke, is a little easier. The new ‘Balance Saffira’ builds just don’t play enough flexible cards to deal with everything you have. As long as they don’t get more than 1 Machine Angel Ritual/Hymn of Light in the grave, you should be able to beat the first ritual summon, and then the question is can you figure out a way to kill them or find another out before they piece together the follow up ritual summon. On the plus side, they have to play very well and make no mistakes or you might just win. Taking too much poke and then getting destroyed by Gaia Plate the Earth Giant burst or playing into Wall of Disruption are common misplays that can hand you the game.
3. Red-Eyes Zombie Dragon
This matchup is better still. They are hard-capped at about 3 Red-Eyes Zombie Dragon summons, two from Red-Eyes Spirit and one from Red-Eyes Wyvern or Gozuki from hand, so if you can outlast them you win. Triamid Pulse with fodder being able to destroy maybe even 2 REZD is very powerful, but good players will clear the way with Storm or use Anti-Magic Arrows to force through an OTK. Never summon Valkyrion the Magna Warrior in attack position lest you get Enemy Controller taken for a swift finish, and recognise when you can flip a just-summoned REZD to defense position before the Battle Phase to dodge Anti-Magic Arrows.
4. Snipe Hunter Wallet Control
For all the money they spent on their deck, it’s just a weaker control deck than yours is. They use Volcanic Rocket for a +1, then Snipe Hunter for a 2/3rds chance of turning that +1 into a destroyed card on your field instead of a meh spell in their hand, but once Triamid Pulse is setup you can stop those shenanigans before they start while also demonstrating that you have better, more efficient destruction removal at your fingertips. Valkyrion the Magna Warrior isn’t really worth prioritising due to how strong Triamid Pulse is and how easy it can be to just get dumpstered by Snipe Hunter or Blaze Accelerator + Volcanic Shell, so if you just focus on making sure you don’t take too much damage and popping their monsters you’ll be able to outgrind them.
5. Hazy Flame
It depends on the variant, but Super Rush Headlong puts in work here. Beware committing to Valkyrion the Magna Warrior too early because you may get Soul Exchanged swifly for a Hazy Flame monster, but otherwise they need Beast Rising or hard removal backrow to beat Valkyrion the Magna Warrior. Triamid Pulse isn’t as good when it can’t target their Hazy Flame monsters, but you can disrupt their Mausoleum of the Emperor and Flame Tiger tribute engines to target their speed, which due to the 3 Star Demotion nerf is already somewhat lacking. Wall of Disruption is also incredibly powerful, and many variants literally cannot out Gaia Plate the Earth Giant without their own Super Rush Headlong due to that massive 5600 effective attack from the halving effect.
6. Red-Eyes Slash Dragon
This also depends on the variant, but it’s generally a great matchup. The only outs to Valkyrion the Magna Warrior in the deck are usually in the extra deck, and Red-Eyes Slash Dragon itself doesn’t do it. They need to resolve a Black Luster Soldier - Envoy of the Evening Twilight/Black Luster Soldier - Sacred Soldier (BLS) banish effect basically, and if they godhanded into a Slash Dragon with BLS equipped and A/D Changer banished and you don’t have the backrow to deal, you probably just lose no matter what. Otherwise, pretty straightforward.
Not really a pretty matchup. They play enough hard backrow to not really fear Valkyrion the Magna Warrior, and Hydrogeddon can swarm the board over any of your little guys, meaning popping all their monsters to win the control game with Triamid Pulse is easier said than done. This might be one of the matchups you can take to deckout, though, if you just never play aggressive and they don’t realise what you’re doing and don’t play the early game right you can lock their monster zones enough that they can’t kill you before their deck is gone.
Pretty simple. This is what Attack the Moon! is for. As long as you don’t clog your backrow with dead cards you’ll eventually draw into it and be able to pick at their defences, and they’ll never actively try to kill you. If you hold your own ‘Endless Trap Hell’ for as long as possible and recognise the deck type early enough to not activate That Grass Looks Greener, you can beat them at their own game if they are an Extra, Extra variant or using Ojama Go!. This one will mostly be determined by your matchup experience. If you know what they’re doing well enough, you can dance around them and destroy them. However, you might lose a few early games along the way.
9. Dark Magician
Don’t forget to toggle on, because you have to destroy their Dark Magician on summon with Triamid Pulse before they can hit you with Dark Magic Attack. Beyond that, the matchup is simple because Dark Magician is a highroll deck that just isn’t strong enough when they don’t open with Magician’s Rod. Once they use Thousand Knives on Valkyrion the Magna Warrior, they often can’t beat a Gaia Plate the Earth Giant follow-up, or at least will have paid too many life points and just die to a Magician’s Rod eating it from your Gaia Plate the Earth Giant.
10. Ancient Gears
Another popular ladder pick, this one has ups and downs but is overall favourable I would say. Save Floodgate Trap Holes or Triamid Pulse pops for Ancient Gear Golem and Sergeant Electro. Ancient Gear Golem can’t beat Valkyrion the Magna Warrior, but it’s just sketchy to treat something that can throw down that much damage and ignores some of your backrow that lightly. Play slow, their normal summons beat yours, but they can’t go the distance like you can. This is another matchup where the number of threats they have is hard-capped, 2 Ancient Gear Golem, 3 Sergeant Electro, 3 Ancient Gear Knight, so if you can beat each threat or partially lock them down you’ll win the grind game or even be able to deck them out. They have Ancient Gear Golem to tribute away useless floodgated or 0 attack monsters but a tribute summoned Ancient Gear Golem that you have an answer for is basically eliminating half of what’s threatening that’s left in their deck. It’s rough that your Wall of Disruption isn’t good, but if you keep playing against and losing to this deck it’s easy to tech in other cards instead.
11. Amazoness Burn
This deck also isn’t as good in general, but for you it should be easy. You can mill off parasite paracide with That Grass Looks Greener, pop Lava Golem in their end phase with Triamid Pulse before you take any burn, and your Magnets trade favourably with Amazoness Swords Woman if you have to instead of just Pulsing it or Floodgating it. Do not summon Valkyrion the Magna Warrior or Gaia Plate the Earth Giant here, you’ll just take more damage and the Triamid Pulse fodder is too valuable, as if you pop all their constant damage cards like Mask of the Accursed and stop each of their burst damage cards like Amazoness Swords Woman, they just can’t kill you, and you’ll slowly kill them.
12. Temple of the Mind’s Eye Burn
This one is a little scarier, but you can still clean them up easily due to your on-demand destruction and pseudo-infinite spell/trap hate. Running them out of field spells usually is crippling, as the deck doesn’t have enough other defense to stop you from killing them with their own Lava Golem even though you prefer to pop it to not take damage.
13. Duel, standby! Cheese
This one is hardly a matchup, as the game heavily relies on whether your opponent draws their combo or not, and what you do generally doesn’t matter. However, two Floodgate Trap Holes and three Triamid Pulses are proactive disruption far stronger than what most other decks have to offer, meaning you do slightly better against them than most, because you can Floodgate Trap Hole or pop key normal summons or combo pieces.
Pretty easy. The deck, while playable, is very inconsistent nowadays, and they both struggle with Valkyrion the Magna Warrior and you can Triamid Pulse their continuous traps on the chain to prevent plays, so pick your poison. The deck can’t really do much to you.
Also pretty easy. They have to hard draw Wild Tornado or something to have any out to Valkyrion the Magna Warrior. Triamid Pulse isn’t as good when you don’t want to destroy their monsters, but you can destroy their field spell to stop them from getting started, and they can’t run enough Sphere Kuribohs to save themselves.
That should cover everything that I played enough to be comfortable talking about, but I can add to it if anyone wants more tips. Now, for closing thoughts.
I really enjoyed playing with this deck. I love the seat-of-your-pants thrill of playing a control game with slightly worse cards in hand than your opponent and thus eventually having to play topdeck to topdeck but knowing you have powerful enough individual cards in your deck to make a comeback. That’s why I love That Grass Looks Greener, and in Duel Links now I can say I love Triamid Pulse too.
I can’t say for sure about this deck’s long-term viability as a contender. I want so badly to say it’s the next Cyber Angels, but that’s just not true. In an effort to avoid my own bias, I’ll conservatively state that this should probably be treated like the Magnets of old: strong enough for a King of Games run, and maybe top 32 of a monthly tournament, but too sketchy to do much else. That doesn’t mean I won’t be trying to crack top 100 in the KC Cup, considering how close I was last time. I just don’t know if this will be the deck that I can take there.
In the end, though, this was definitely a blast, and I’ll continue trying to make spicy Grass brews work going into the future, and probably writing 4,913 more words about them if it happens to work. I beat my previous record of 2,123 words on a Luck On Your Side guide, but I like writing about Yu-Gi-Oh, so feel free to keep asking questions in the comments. Thank you for reading!