Home > 2010/09 - Toronto, Canada, Yu-Gi-Oh! Championship Series > Deck Profile: Nicky Lacaille’s Miracle Monarchs

Deck Profile: Nicky Lacaille’s Miracle Monarchs

September 4th, 2010

With most competitors expecting today’s tournament to be slower, more stable, and less centered around One-Turn KO’s than previous Championship events this Summer, many Duelists are taking an interest in Monarch Decks.

For the past several months, Frog Monarchs saw some success in major competitions: Duelists used Swap Frog and Substitoad to get Ronintoadin and Treeborn Frog to the Graveyard, then Tributed them off for everything from Caius the Shadow Monarch and Raiza the Storm Monarch to Light and Darkness Dragon, Vanity’s Fiend, and Obelisk the Tormentor.  The monsters a Monarch Duelist would Tribute Summon either served to eliminate opposing cards, or had big effects that limited the opponent’s options instead.  Battle Fader was a key part of the strategy, ending big Battle Phases that would otherwise see swarms of “X-Saber” or “Infernity” monsters win the Duel.

Frog Monarchs have lost Substitoad to the Forbidden List, but with fewer Duelists attempting to win by turn three or four, pacing may work in the Deck’s favor.  Many competitors are creating new spins on the old Frog Monarch builds in an effort to take advantage of new opportunities, putting the three card slots Substitoad once occupied to work in new ways.  There are a lot of variants on the tournament floor here today, but Nicky Lacaille’s stands out for being particularly well-built, and original.

He’s taken the WATER portion of the Deck in a new direction, replacing Substitoad with Snowman Eater, and adding Evil Hero Inferno Prodigy to make up for lost speed.  The result is a Deck that has both “Hero” monsters and the WATER Attribute: exactly what Lacaille needed to add a new threat to the deck.  Check it out!

Monsters: 25

3 Caius the Shadow Monarch

3 Raiza the Storm Monarch

3 Thestalos the Firestorm Monarch

3 Swap Frog

1 Ronintoadin

2 Treeborn Frog

3 Snowman Eater

3 D.D. Crow

2 Evil Hero Infernal Prodigy

1 Elemental Hero Stratos

1 Gorz, The Emisary Of Darkness

Spells: 10

3 Miracle Fusion

3 Pot Of Duality

2 Soul Exchange

1 Monster Reborn

1 Dark Hole

Traps: 5

3 Spiritual Water Art – Aoi

1 Trap Dustshoot

1 Mind Crush

Decklist eaten by Snowman Eater. Hang on while I get my hair dryer... Check back after the event is over.

Snowman Eater is one of the key cards of the Deck,” explained Lacaille.  It’s a great card to play in a Deck with lots of high-level monsters requiring Tribute Summons, because it can easily destroy an opposing monster before it’s Tributed: if Lacaille’s going to Tribute monsters, Snowman Eater lets him destroy an opposing card on the way to balance the loss of his Tribute.

“It stands against Shura, Firedog, Infernity Archfiend, and Boggart Knight, plus it’s WATER.”  He takes advantage of the WATER Attribute in two ways: first with Spiritual Water Art – Aoi, and secondly with Miracle Fusion.  “I use Evil Hero Infernal Prodigy for the Fusion Material of Elemental Hero Absolute Zero. Since Frog Monarchs lost Substitoad, the Deck is slower to get Treeborn Frog to the Graveyard.  In the early game Prodigy helps me get Monarchs on the field, by Special Summoning it so I can Tribute it right away.”

Prodigy works sort of like Cyber Dragon: you can Special Summon it from your hand in Attack Position if you don’t control any monsters, giving Lacaille easy access to Tribute fodder when he needs it.  Unlike Cyber Dragon, Infernal Prodigy doesn’t require the opponent to have a monster on the field, making it more flexible.  Lacaille can also search it out with Elemental Hero Stratos.

With a “Hero” monster and a WATER monster in the Graveyard, Lacaille can bust out his second plan of attack: Miracle Fusion.  By removing a WATER and a Hero, he can Special Summon Elemental Hero Absolute Zero, adding 2500 ATK to his field.  Zero’s ability builds on the field-clearing power of Lacaille’s Monarchs, giving him another way to wipe away whatever stands between him and his opponent’s Life Points.  It’s extremely easy for Lacaille to go from an empty field, to Infernal Prodigy, to a Monarch, to a Monarch plus Absolute Zero: this Deck racks up damage way faster than a typical Frog Monarch Deck, and that allows Lacaille to defy his opponent’s expectations and take them by surprise.

Monarchs may have lost a little speed with Substitoad gone, but the one-two punch of a Monarch followed by Absolute Zero might make up for it.  Zero even combos with Spiritual Water Art – Aoi in a pinch, forcing the opponent to discard a key card while destroying all of their monsters: Tributing Zero for Water Art’s activation cost triggers its effect.

Pot of Duality is another card that helps speed the strategy along.  “I run 3 Pot of Duality simply because this card is too good to not play in 3 of every Deck except Gladiators,” remarked Lacaille.  Like most Duality users this weekend, he had a set of distinct plans for how to play around Duality’s restriction on Special Summoning: “Even if I can’t Special Summon for a turn, I can still use Soul Exchange or Set a Snowman Eater.”  Pot of Duality helps ensure that Lacaille’s Deck performs more consistently, which is a big deal for a Monarch Duelist.

Every now and then, a Monarch Deck may suffer from clogged draws: it’s easy to get unlucky and draw Monarch after Monarch, or draw nothing but support monsters that can’t deal any damage.  Seeing more cards with Pot of Duality helps smooth things over, and makes it easier for Lacaille to put together simple combos like a WATER monster plus Spiritual Water Art.  Best of all, it helps him draw towards Swap Frog and Treeborn Frog to get the Deck in motion.

Monarchs could have a strong presence in today’s tournament: they’ve always had a reputation for their reliability, and in a slower Advanced Format bolstered by the consistency of Pot of Duality, they could be at their prime.  Innovators like Nicky Lacaille may very well guide the Deck in bold new directions if they place well in Day 2.