YCS Dallas Recap

October 16th, 2015

The last time the Yu-Gi-Oh! Championship Series visited Dallas, two-time YCS winner Billy Brake defeated the defending Yu-Gi-Oh! World Champion to claim a legendary third title with a crazy 60-card Deck. The stars must align for Dueling dreams in Dallas though, as this year we saw another miracle with YCS First-Timer Erik Christensen beating out 1,287 competitors, facing off against Matt Kolenda’s Burning Abyss Deck in the finals, with an absurd 16-0 record to become not only a champion, but the first to ever do so piloting Infernoid! Few have ever managed to take down a YCS completely undefeated, the last being TJ Kinsley at the 150th YCS Columbus this past May, but to do so using a strategy that no one else had managed to make the Top Cut with is quite a feat.  And if going undefeated and doing so with a unique Deck was not enough, this really cemented itself as a Cinderella story with Christensen having never competed in a YCS before. The combination of attending your first YCS, going undefeated, and doing so with a Deck that others have underestimated is the dream of every Duelist who has not had a chance to show their stuff on the big stage – Christensen accomplishing this shows that it is possible.

Trophy Shot

YCS Dallas attendees still have something to play for; by helping Konami and completing this short survey, two random winners will get a display box of Clash of Rebellions. https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/YCS_Dallas2015

The main event was not the only place to find excitement though, as the Dragon Duel Playoffs featured 11-year-old Diego Lopez claiming victory with his Blackwings over 12-year-old Tyler Hanson and his Kozmos to become the YCS Dallas Dragon Duel Champion winning a Super Rare set of Darklord YCS Prize Cards! Lopez had taken down Saturday’s Dragon Duel, and while we had not seen Blackwing on the main stage in a while, he confidently locked his slot in the Dragon Duel Playoffs. Hanson on the other hand won his spot in Sunday’s Dragon Duel, and while his luck may have not been with him in the Playoffs, he still managed to win a Super Rare Minerva, the Exalted Lightsworn as he won the Random Public Events Playoff!

The field at YCS Dallas featured what everyone expected: Nekroz, Burning Abyss, and Shaddoll all taking up big numbers looking to be the Decks to beat as the tournament moved forward. We saw Instant Fusion and Elder Entity Norden make waves as many Duelists were trying to utilize the new combo to do awesome things in their own respective strategies. Performage also had a big showing, not only being used by many Nekroz and Shaddoll Duelists as a support engine, but also Performage Challenger, a new Deck that takes advantage of the awesome combination of Performage Trick Clown and Heroic Challenger – Thousand Blades to generate powerful Rank 4 Xyz plays, took two slots in the Top 32 Cut. Even PSY-Frame, a new theme recently released from High-Speed Riders, also wowed the event as a couple Duelists caught everyone off guard but barely missed making it into the Single Elimination Rounds.

Moving forward, Duelists will have to be more prepared for both Infernoid and PSY-Frame. The former being the more important of the two because the power of cards such as Reasoning and Infernoid Decatron allow for games to quickly spiral out of control. Duelists will most likely have to add some tools to their arsenal such as Tellarknight Ptolemaeus to help them Summon Stellarknight Constellar Diamond so that they can fend off the Infernoid menace. Stellarknight Constellar Diamond completely shuts off Infernoid Duelists’ most powerful cards by stopping things from the Deck being sent to the Graveyard, so suddenly Reasoning and Infernoid Decatron do not do much of anything. However, with the impending release of Dimension of Chaos, Duelists can also expect Kozmo to get a huge boost from the DARK side. One option that seems well positioned against Infernoid, PSY-Frame, and Kozmo is Imperial Iron Wall. Because it is just a Continuous Trap, most strategies that are not trying to banish cards, such as Burning Abyss or Shaddoll, can take advantage of it without any drawbacks. Infernoid needs to banish their Monsters in order to Summon more; PSY-Frame’s biggest threats, PSY-Framelord Omega and PSY-Framelord Zeta, both try to take advantage of banishing the opponent’s cards; and Kozmo heavily interacts with their banished Monsters in order to pull off awesome combos. Even Nekroz wants to banish their Ritual Spells to find more and need to be able to banish cards in order for Nekroz of Trishula to do its thing. Instant Fusion and Elder Entity Norden make Xyz Summoning Tellarknight Ptolemaeus, and therefore Stellarknight Constellar Diamond, even easier so any Deck with access to Level 4 Monsters can make use of that. For everything else, and even some of those who can already use Stellarknight Constellar Diamond, Imperial Iron Wall may be the key to defeating some of the strongest strategies you might face.

Can Infernoid continue to show such impressive success? Will the new support from Dimension of Chaos on November 6 push Kozmo over the top? Or is the craziness going to continue and a completely different strategy will make its mark? We will have to wait until November 7th and 8th to see at Yu-Gi-Oh! Championship Series San Jose.