Top Player Council Thoughts
With the recent release of a new Main BOX, the Top Player Council has made minor updates to the Tier List and added two new decks — Mermails and U.A. — to High Potential as decks to keep your eye on in the coming weeks. Overall, however, the meta remains very stable heading into the next KC Cup.
Fur Hires and Amazoness have both remained in Tier 1. Amazoness is slowly taking over the top spot in the Duel Links meta, running heavy, disruptive backrow and then clearing entire boards with Amazoness Onslaught. They have also received a new toy in Drowning Mirror Force, particularly helping the Spellbook match-up. Drowning is also fairly easy to trigger since Amazoness doesn’t always mind skipping its normal summon, being able to special summon off Onslaught or Amazoness Willpower to quickly re-fill the board when necessary. Meanwhile Fur Hires have continued strong, with many running Sea Stealth Attack and Mythic Depths to abuse Wiz, Sage Fur Hire even more than pre-banlist.
The two Tier 1 decks both running strong continuous Trap effects has had the interesting effect of decreasing the value of Hey, Trunade! (slowing down the meta a bit) and driving up the value of Cosmic Cyclone even further. In turn, non-chainable backrow like Wall of Disruption, Widespread Ruin, and Drowning Mirror Force benefit from Trunade falling off.
negao do zap: Finally, Fur Hire and Amazoness are the same level of strength. Fur Hire turned into a control deck with SSA and Amazoness has gone back to using Cosmic Cyclone. With Treacherous Trap Hole being such a problem in this format, Amazoness now also use Amazoness Scouts as a core card. Overall, I think the meta is stabilizing for the KC Cup.
kwrowe: Not sure what to say about either of these. They both have good match-ups against a large amount of the format. They also see a large amount of play. Will be Tier 1 until the next set.
Spellbooks have been demoted to Tier 2 after a brief stint in Tier 1. Sea Stealth Attack gives Fur Hires another way to get past Silent Magician LV8, and Drowning Mirror Force/Widespread Ruin do the same for Amazoness. The synergy between Cosmic Cyclone and Switcheroo remains a strong point for this deck, especially as Cosmic Cyclone continues to hold tremendous value.
Vampires remain in Tier 2, seeing continued tournament success thanks to their consistency and flexibility. Bandit has become the most popular skill for Vampires, working in tandem with the built-in LP loss as well as excellent cards like Cosmic Cyclone (which hits some of the biggest threats in the current meta). Other skills like Sealed Tombs and Cyber Style have also been successful in various contexts.
BlackJesus: Spellbooks cannot keep up with the overwhelming force that is Amazoness. Even with a solid Fur Hire match-up, the nerf has allowed a larger variety of decks to come forth, which is not good for Spellbooks. Every other deck has swarming potential and can pull off explosive turns without requiring an uncontested normal summon like Fur Hires.
kwrowe: Spellbooks lose far too much to be considered Tier 1 in my opinion. Amazoness is played by virtually everyone and rarely loses this match-up. Vampires have started to see consistent tournament representation and placing. Very powerful combos. Easy to disrupt but seems to have decent recovery; a lot of this is down to Samurai Skull being great in the meta. Watch this deck, as it could even move up with more results.
Masked HEROs have remained in Tier 3. Like Spellbooks, Heroes’ ability to get great value from Cosmic Cyclone is very strong. Additionally, the slightly slower meta (coupled with one less Donpa, Marksman Fur Hire available to Fur Hire decks) gives Heroes a little breathing room in the early game and helps increase the probability of resolving Destiny HERO - Celestial’s effect.
kwrowe: Rogue and has a nice Vampire match-up. If it was a bit more consistent then there could be an argument for Tier 2 but Destiny HERO - Malicious bricks still happen. Also has a less-than-ideal match-up against Amazoness, the most played deck.
Mermails and U.A. have been added to High Potential. Mermails (and the Atlantean support cards) have a lot of synergy with previous WATER support (like Abyss Soldier, Citadel Whale, Dragon Ice, Salvage, Sea Stealth Attack, etc.) and so figuring out the best way to combine all these potential parts may take time. And while SSA is a very good counter to Amazoness, it’s also easily dealt with by a single Cosmic Cyclone hitting the Umi (and unlike Fur Hire SSA, this deck has no built-in way to stop a Cosmic Cyclone). U.A. is more self-contained and so the deck has less room for exploration, with most players immediately opting for Cyber Style with Mithra the Thunder Vassal/Berlineth the Firestorm Vassal and The Tricky as optional extra support for tribute summoning (the latter two having nice synergy with U.A. Rival Rebounder to re-summon whatver was discarded). U.A. Penalty Box can also be discarded to search the field spell U.A. Stadium, and both Penalty Box and U.A. Mighty Slugger are very useful against Amazoness. The strongest monster, U.A. Dreadnought Dunker, is an Amazoness Sage on steroids, inflicting pierce damage and giving Damage Step card destruction (where most cards are unable to be chained) upon damage dealt.
Both High Potential decks show promise, but serious obstacles must be overcome in order to hit the Tier List and be taken seriously in competitive settings. U.A. can perform very well against the Tier 1 decks if it opens well, but inconsistency is a real issue and Spellbooks generally smack U.A. around since it can be difficult for them to swarm without Rebounder. Mermails can devastate opponents going second, but have a very weak turn 1 play (without something like Citadel Whale) and every card searchable by Mermail Abyssmegalo is lackluster at best.
Batterymen have been demoted from the Tier List. Despite an excellent “grind game” once they get set up, Batterymen struggle from being a very slow deck in the early game, unable to push the tempo of a game or punish an opponent for bricking. In a format where the top decks are putting out oppressive turn 1 boards like Wiz + SSA, Amazoness Princess + full backrow, or Silent Magician + Spellbook of Fate, simply setting Batteryman Micro-Cell and an Enemy Controller is not good enough anymore.
This week we have the Meta Weekly on 8/28 and other community events throughout the week.
Expect the results of these events to have a strong influence on the tier list.
Tier List update written by superforms.