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Hi, it’s me again, back with another guide, and this time… Buster Blader. Buster Blader decks aren’t really anything new, in fact, Buster Blader, the Dragon Destroyer Swordsman, Dark Paladin, and Buster Blader, the Destruction Swordmaster all came in the Crimson Kingdom Box. I used to play Buster Blader, the Destruction Swordmaster with Mausoleum of the Emperor back during the Sylvan meta. Buster Blader only really became relevant after the mini box Power of Bravery was released a few boxes back, and with it the introduction of Buster Whelp of the Destruction Swordsman and Destruction Swordsman Fusion. As if that was not enough, Konami decided to give us access to 3 DNA Surgery which made the deck way stronger and more consistent. The deck started rising in popularity and eventually climbed its way up into the tiered decks and soon rose to the top.
This skill is what people seem to be favoring recently, stalling the turn 5 or 6 and then hopefully drawing into their combo to OTK their opponent. The drawback is that Last Gamble is not stable there are times it will be in your favor and roll a 5 or a 6 but then there are also times you will roll into a 1 or a 2, basically losing you the game. It is best to only use this skill as the name implies, when you have no other options. This skill might fall off in future tournaments as people have started teching cards like Black Pendant and Stamping Destruction to burn your remaining 100 LP off.
This skill is a safer option instead of Last Gamble, being able to see what backrow your opponent has lets you decided what plays you want to make, whether to have an additional Destruction Swordsman Fusion in hand when swinging into Widespread Ruins, Paleozoic Canadia, or something like that, or if you can just swing if they have a Wall or Disruption or something similar. The drawback of this skill is that if you brick and you don’t happen to be an anime protagonist, then you’re screwed.
This skill is the most consistent out of all the skills as it guarantees you a trap, a spell, and a monster in your opening hand, there’s not really much to say about this skill but the main drawback is that your opening hand is limited and have basically no chance of getting nutty hands while other decks have a chance to open god hands. This skill also lacks the ability to draw into combos and see whether you should swing or not, but is still a solid choice if you find yourself bricking a lot.
Thoughts on skill selection:
Currently Last Gamble is the best skill to use as you can open crazy hands and can Last Gamble into cards you need. It is also a good competitive skill as the Meta Weekly format is a 2 best out of three so consistency doesn’t matter as much since you don’t have to win games in a row. But Balance and Mind Scan are still solid ladder skills if you do not have Last Gamble unlocked yet.
Jagalico - 1st Place MCS 14
This is one of the fusion materials for your deck as it lets you summon Dark Paladin or Buster Blader, the Dragon Destroyer Swordsman with another fusion sub. You could also tribute off Buster Whelp of the Destruction Swordsman when it’s on the field and special summon this card from your hand or from your graveyard. It is best not to summon this monster unless you’re in a dire situation where you might lose as this card doesn’t do anything at all except gain attack.
Buster Blader, the Dragon Destroyer Swordsman (3x)
This card is the main card of this deck, when a monster with a monster attribute is on the field, its effects are negated and switched to defense position, fully stopping combos and attacks. Be careful when summoning him as you only have 2-3 of him and no inherent protection. It is ok to swing him into anything if you plan on going for game and have another fusion spell in hand so you can fuse him off for another Dragon Destroyer if they activate traps like Widespread Ruin or Offerings to the Doomed.
Dark Paladin (2x)
Won’t see as much play as Buster Blader, the Dragon Destroyer Swordsman, but is integral against spell reliant decks and especially mirror matches. This card is really good in the mirror because this card let’s you discard a card from your hand and negate a spell so if you just keep drawing and negating their fusion spells, they essentially can’t do anything. This card can also help with OTKs as you can Whelp into Buster Blader, swing, and then fuse into Dark Paladin. This is quite risky though but if they have no backrow set, it is a good option.
Buster Whelp of the Destruction Swordsman (3x)
This card is really good, along side with being a one star tuner, it lets you add a Destruction Swordsman Fusion to your hand and lets you tribute it to summon a Buster Blader in your hand or in your grave. Also, if you have a Buster Blader of any kind on the field and this card is in the grave, you can discard your Destruction Swordsman Fusion and special summon it. The versatility of this card is great as you can have many different kinds of plays like summoning it to search a fusion spell and then tributing it off for a Buster Blader and then use that fusion spell with that Buster Blader and a sub to special summon Dark Paladin who will also have that 500 attack buff from the Whelp in the graveyard.
Destruction Swordsman Fusion (2x)
The ability to let you use one of your opponent’s monsters as a fusion substitute is game changing and since with a single card you can change the attribute of all the monsters on the field resulting in being able to fully utilize this card all the time. Do be careful when swinging right after you summon as you can only use the fusion spell once each turn.
DNA Surgery (3x)
This card changes all monsters on the field to one attribute so when selected Dragon and with Buster Blader, the Dragon Destroyer Swordsman on the board, all of your opponent’s monster effects will be negated and as well be switched to Defense position.
Hey, Trunade! (1x)
Useful card for clearing the board before going in for an OTK, great for clearing away those pesky traps.
The Dark - Hex-Sealed Fusion (2x)
Generic fusion substitute, it has 1600 defense so it is a safe set but cannot synchro into an Armades, Keeper of Boundaries. Usually preferred over Goddess with the Third Eye when you have 2 Dark Paladins instead of 1 Dark Paladin and 1 Armades in your extra deck. Interchangeable with Goddess with the Third Eye.
Sits at 1600 attack, the same as all of the HERO cards, so they either have to sacrifice one of their monsters or use Mask Change. This card also forces out all the chain-able traps when summoned as in the battle phase all opponent traps cannot be activated. This card is also a Dragon type so it can also be used as fusion material without DNA Surgery active. I strongly recommend playing this card as a core card in your main card for ladder but it isn’t strictly necessary in tournaments as you have access to a side deck.
Goddess with the Third Eye
Another fusion substitute to have,usually used when you have Armades in your extra deck as it can be used to synchro with Whelp into an Armades, interchangeable with The Dark - Hex-Sealed Fusion.
Armades, Keeper of Boundaries
Great card for swinging into monsters or for direct attacks as opponents can’t activate traps or Kuribohs when you swing, so it is a big threat to your opponent, they will usually waste their chain-able traps on it like Paleozoic Canadias and Treacherous Trap Holes.
A great card to have in the deck, this card can flip down your opponent’s threats that threaten to destroy your monsters like Karakuri Shogun mdl 00 "Burei", Masked HERO Anki or threaten to pop your DNA like Koa'ki Meiru Maximus and Ancient Gear Reactor Dragon and deal with it next turn, you can also special summon it onto your field from your grave and use it as a fusion substitute. Be wary of summoning it after you Last Gamble as it has very low stats (atk: 1200/def: 0) and could easily get run over.
Floodgate Trap Hole
A great alternative to Canadia, this flips down your opponent’s monster permanently so that you can deal with that monster whenever you want instead of having to deal with it next turn.
Network Trap Hole
What can I say, I love this card. Against the current meta, this card is never a dead card and can be used to deal with threats like Koa'ki Meiru Ice, Vampire Vamp et cetera if you don’t have full combo on board,e.g. just your Destruction Swordsman on board. But if you see that they don’t have Vampire Vamp in their graveyard they will probably summon it from their hand and you’ll need to find another way to deal with it, i.e. Floodgate, Canadia, or fuse into another monster when they summon Vamp. This card is also effective on the recently added Ancient Gears as when the summon from their deck you could banish that card facedown with this since Network Trap Hole doesn’t target.
This matchup is in your favour since their boss monster is a Dragon and if you have Dragon Destroyer on the field they essentially have to play without a boss monster and have to rely on Koa'ki Meiru Ice to win, Ice can easily be flipped down with Paleozoic Canadia or Floodgate Trap Hole or you can just fuse out another Dragon Destroyer if that option is available. It is best to flip your DNA up and fuse your Dragon Destroyer right away when you know that they are playing Koa'ki Meirus either from them summoning Koa'ki Meiru Urnight or by activating Diamond Core of Koa'ki Meiru, as they can special summon Koa'ki Meiru Sandman and Koa'ki Meiru Wall to ruin your day. Also beware of Ice when you don’t have DNA as it can destroy your Dragon Destroyer with its effect.
Karakuris in itself cannot really do much, but the have crazy draw power and can draw into cards they need like Offerings to the Doomed to take out your Dragon Destroyer, this makes them a hard matchup, the best way to go about this to summon Dark Paladin right away to stop them from using Offerings to the Doomed or to activate your DNA Surgery to stop them from synchro summoning into their Karakuri Shogun mdl 00 "Burei" and putting your Dark Paladin into defense position and swinging over it.
This matchup will either be incredibly easy or incredibly hard depending on your opening hand. If you open DNA Surgery you pretty much win since they cannon special summon Silent Magician unless it’s with a facedown Spellcaster and they cannot activate Spellbook of Fate since they have no Spellcasters on the field, all you’ll have to do is protect DNA from Breaker the Magical Warriors or Cosmic Cyclones if they have them. On the chance that you do not open DNA you’ll have to try your hardest to special summon your Dark Paladin before they get their Silent Magician out and negate all their Spellbook of Fates and try to get Whelp into the grave as soon as possible to stop their Silent Magician LV8 from beating over you.
This matchup is kinda of a coin flip, if you open with a great hand you basically just win, but if you open up with a bad hand, your opponent can easily swarm you and OTK you. Always have a Destruction Swordsman Fusion for their Enemy Controller and Paleozoic Canadia plays. Do note that they often run Sphere Kuribohs so do not go all in on one attack unless it’s do or die. If they are running Bandit Keith, chances are they are probably also running Bandit with Cosmic Cyclone and sometimes Mirror Wall, so when you set your cards be sure to activate them in your opponent’s draw phase or chain it to an life costing effect that would bring them low enough to use Bandit. If you do not start with DNA in your starting hand try to fuse into a Dark Paladin and negate their spells like Vampire Kingdom and Vampire's Domain so that they can’t activate Domain and special summon Vampire Familiar off of it, search Vampire Grace and summon her. If you don’t draw into Canadia/Floodgate or DNA, it’ll be a tough game and will be heavily in their favor as they can summon Vampire Vamp or Vampire Grace to deal with you.
This match up is a bit annoying. They have a lot of backrow so you really have to wait for a Hey, Trunade! or a Mirage Dragon. The bad part of waiting to draw into your combo is that Heroes is a deck with heavy OTK potential so you really can’t afford to wait and have to hope to draw into your combo right away. If it is not possible, try to fuse out a Dark Paladin to temporarily stall them for a bit and be ready for them to Canadia you and swing directly. After Last Gamble-ing always have a fusion spell in your hand and set when it’s your opponent’s turn so they can’t just Canadia your Dragon Destroyer and swing directly with Masked HERO Anki for game.
This is a pretty easy matchup, Armades, Keeper of Boundaries can’t swing over you and they don’t have any proactive monster removal spells/ traps and will have to take damage to swing into your Dragon Destroyer. You can play around Floodgate Trap Holes by fusioning and then flipping on DNA in response to that. Since they are backrow heavy you can usually summon your Mirage Dragon and bait out their Floodgates/Canadias. You only really have to worry about Widespread Ruins as Wall of Disruption would not really matter since their monsters do not have high attack stats and even without buffs, your Dragon Destroyer would only get knocked down to 2000 and Dark Paladin to 2100 assuming you only have one monster on the board.
Easy matchup for you since all their monsters are Dragons and in order for them to summon their Cosmo Brain, they have to dump a Dragon into the grave giving your Dragon Destroyer an additional 500 attack to swing over Cosmo Brain. You will rarely ever brick in this matchup as summoning both Dark Paladin or Dragon Destroyer will work and they will gain a lot of attack stats with all the Dragons on the field.
This us a bad matchup as they have a lot of ways to pop your DNA Surgery (Unending Nightmare, Double Cyclone). Your best bet would be to fuse into Dark Paladin as it has a base attack of 2900 and gains 500 for each Dragon type in either player’s graveyard. Try to fusion/synchro/tributing off your Whelp so that it will be in your graveyard making your Dark Paladin’s attack to 3400. Ancient Gear Reactor Dragon is sadly not a Dragon but only has 3000 attack. Beware of their backrow, they usually run Paleozoic Canadia, Enemy Controller ( not much of a threat since you can negate it) and Treacherous Trap Hole.
Don’t chain your DNA surgery to another DNA surgery as yours will resolve first and then theirs. The first to flip it will be the one active as chains start from the bottom so the first DNA flipped would be on top of the chain and then the second one flipped in response to that would be on the bottom of the chain.
When setting other cards be mindful or your opponents having Galaxy Cyclone as they can destroy a backrow and then use Galaxy Cyclone’s secondary effect and destroy your face up DNA when you have it active.
If you fear that your opponent has backrow removal, try to only activate your DNA Surgery during your opponent's Battle Phase so that even if they destroy your DNA, you manage to stop their play that turn and buy yourself another turn. If your DNA is already active and it’s removed try to stall until you get another one. With the loss of your DNA you will probably lose your Dragon Destroyer as a lot of mosnters can swing over it (Masked HERO Anki can crash into it, Koa'ki can remove it with Koa'ki Meiru Ice, Karakuri can change it into defense position and swing over it with Karakuri Shogun mdl 00 "Burei") so you should just try to set cards and flip their monsters facedown to stall until you draw into another DNA or you can Last Gamble.
You can deal pierce damage through a Winged Kuriboh.
Only use Last Gamble if you have to, don’t use it just because you can. If you have your field established and an extra Destruction Swordsman Fusion (depends on matchups with backrow that can either destroy or flip down your monsters ie. Karakuri, Heroes, et cetera) in hand, you can just wait and draw into a Hey, Trunade! or a Mirage Dragon.
When swinging through backrow and they have no monsters, set your Dragon Destroyer to defense position and swing with your other monsters so you won’t lose if they have Drowning Mirror Force.
After using your fusion spell, chain DNA to it to play around Floodgate Trap Hole.
If you’re facing against Karakuris you can activate DNA and change them to something other than Machine, i.e Dragon or Warrior to stop them from doing a synchro summon and buy yourself more time.
You can activate DNA to stop Vampires from gaining that 500 attack buff from Vampire Kingdom to buy yourself more time as well.
Summon Armades, Keeper of Boundaries if they have a lot of backrow and you do not have Hey, Trunade! in hand as it will either bait out backrow like Canadia, Floodgate, and Offerings or they will just let the attack through.
If you have Mirage Dragon and they let it through into the Battle Step, you can then safely fuse out Dragon Destroyer or Dark Paladin and swing with it.
If you chain Destruction Swordsman Fusion to your DNA Surgery, the fusion spell will activate before your DNA turns all monsters on the field to one attribute so be careful with that. You could chain your DNA to your fusion spell and get the desired effect though.
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