Taming Monkeys

Experience and instincts, to be honest, they are bastard stepparents you wish you never had. Here's the problem with experience, you only get it after you need it. It doesn't help you right now and it only teaches you enough to help you the next time. I'm talking about the kind of experience that comes from having hot hands then go on tilt and finally you tip over the fucking toilet flushing down three stacks of high society moments earlier was lining up in front of you. The kind that tells you if your girlfriend pushes you to “unnecessary” directions, decisions there is probably a good reason but you're too dumb to comprehend at that moment.

And then there's instincts. It's like catching a glimpse at that big right hook swinging from your blind spot. You see it coming, at the same time, you can't do jackshit about it and the next thing you know you're smacked face down onto that cold rough asphalt. You know, the kind that makes you queasy like De La Hoya walking back into Pacquiao. Like that time you didn't study for your “future defining” finals and you think the answer is A but your instincts tells you it's B and you're left hanging dry eventually you close your eyes, breathe, tap into your inner psyche, and you visualize a clear C in your mind. Yeah, we all know how that ends.

The point is victory loves preparation (Amat Victoria Curam.) That's where you can relate all this with Yugioh. You probably heard it a million times before about how play-testing is half the battle won and all that other whatnots. The truth is, play-testing is important because that is where you can comfortably fail with the least of consequences (or cost.) When you scrubbed a tournament  and try to comfort yourself by saying "It's alright at least i gained new experiences." is probably the worst kind of self-pity and justification you can feed yourself. Hey, K'yde i still don't see your point here! It's simple, experience and instincts they don't help you with today, only with tomorrow.

There is no other way around it. That's where play-testing comes into the equation. Learn everything you can about your enemy (the Meta) and yourself (your deck of choice) during testing stages. Since experiences and instincts only help you with decision-making tomorrow choose to fail today when the cost is low compared to tomorrow when the cost is higher. Albeit there is always the caveat where luck plays a part, however, through experiences and instincts you learn how to deal with it. Or at rare times feel the storm coming before it hits. Remember that time when you wanted to make "IMBA PLAY-A" but your guts can't shut up about "IMBA PLAY-B"? How do you decide? The only rational, logical answer comes from personal experience whether or not to trust your instincts or go with the textbook best play. Either way, you only gains all these insights through experiences.

If you are a competitive player, this is not even a choice. Ask any business-minded people and they’ll tell you investing early is key. Not when the bubble burst. In short, failing early teaches you how to use your brain and when to trust your heart. If you’re gonna suck during play-testing not when you are making a run for a title. Thank you for reading! I'm still unsure what to write about for my next post and if you have any requests please leave them down on the comments section. Will see if i am capable of tackling your topic of choice. Thank you again!


  1. upcoming tcg meta?

    1. You are asking an OCG player about the upcoming TCG meta? Hahaha.

      Well here's my guess on it:

      Nekroz will be joining the Triumvirate of Burning Abyss, Qliphort and Shaddoll, while I still think that no deck will rise to Tier 0 like Dragon Rulers did. It's more like 1 Deck will be slightly better than the others, most likely this will be Burning Abyss or Nekroz, but Burning Abyss will always die to Trishula, Unicorn and any Nekroz Special Summoned with the Djinn.
      Qliphort has better outs vs. Nekroz, but is too reliant on its normal summons when it doesn't have Skill Drain on the field.
      And it normally dies right away to Burning Abyss, as it has access to so many removal and disruption like Fire Lake, Virgil, Phoenix Wing Wind Blast, Karma Cut, Mystical Space Typhoon, etc.
      The only exception would be when Burning Abyss draws a mediocre hand while you have S/T removal, Tool a monster and some Flood Gates like Skill Drain or Vanity's Emptiness.

      Shaddoll will be the weakest part of the Top 4, while it definitely has some chances against Burning Abyss due to Denko Sekka and Shaddoll Fusion for some free fusions, Qliphort and Nekroz will only laugh about all the monsters they put on board.


    2. I forgot to mention heroes, but they won't make such a big impact due to Stratos still banned :/ #freestratos2015
      We will definitely see some splashes, I tested some builds like Burning Abyss with Dark Law, but while the theory with Mask Change the Second, tributing and discarding a BA monster sounds good, the practical testing was subpar until now. Most of the times it was better to make double Dante who makes Fire Lake and floaters stay alive than going into a Dark Law who makes every BA floater go suicide. In addition one single Vanity's Emptiness will make you -3.


    3. Anon: I prefer not to write about TCG Meta. Can't give an accurate assessment since i am not playing in that environment so it would be better not to. CoreTCG's blog does a great job on competitive TCG though. You should check it out. However, taking a wild guess, Nekroz will hit TCG and hit HARD.

      Kahzel: Hero can function without Stratos thanks to Shadow Mist. Looking at things, TCG's Heroes might adopt the old school Hero-trademark (Miracle Fusion). but with Masked Heroes added into the bunch so Contrast Hero could make it's debut in TCGland. You will definitely see triple CotH as a staple in the deck's strategy and probably double Another Neos coupled with Gemini Sparks. It's a 50-50 split between Control and Rush i suppose (as the main focus of the deck.) OTK potentials, definitely available since it's Heroes.

      Maybe summon Blazeman (search Polymerization), special Summon Absolute Zero (Shadow Mist+Bubbleman), search Bubbleman (Shadow Mist's effect), Mask Change Zero into Masked Hero Acid (blow the whole field), and proceed with more Special Summon shenanigans would be a common sight in TCG. For example, Excalibur+Acid=6400 (OTK if Miracle Fusion or CotH included) or Blade Heart+Acid=7000 (OTK if Miracle Fusion or CotH included)

    4. *Excalibur+Acid=6600

      With A Hero Lives at three, Hero's trend could go both ways like earlier years. OTK-oriented or Control/Rush-oriented. Taking OCG's Hero builds as blueprints is what i would do but add in Miracle Fusion and play some omni-fusions other than Absolute Zero. Or just YOLO with double Zero and Acid. That's more than enough for game. However, mirror matches between Heroes will definitely spark innovations in terms of techs and sides. Either people will start adopting one-for-one cards (Smashing Ground) or an all-round side/tech will emerge to deal with the mirror and relevant enough for the competitive scene (Swords of Concealing Light).

  2. I hope that Blazeman will hit TCG with the Structure Deck, as it's still an OCG exclusive at the moment. Yep, triple CotH is a must in Heros, but you will cry every time when your opponent flips a Vanity's Emptiness, as you don't always have MST or have to set it because of Bubbleman, so you can't activate it in your turn anymore. With every top deck here (Burning Abyss, Qliphort and Shaddoll) playing 2-3 Vanity's Emptiness you will have a hard time going into a tournament with Heroes.
    Burning Abyss will just spam some floaters if you get rid of Dante and call Dante back with Cir. I tested Heros with proxies, but it can't really compete against any of the top decks here at the moment. Hopefully this will change with the next banlist.


  3. Thank You ! For the Insight i was thinking of using the ritual spell of ganadorf because you can remove it from grave and have monsters be stacked on your opp. deck... anyway thank you!