Home > 2019/09 - Niagara Falls, ON, Yu-Gi-Oh! Championship Series > Round 1 Feature Match: Blair Hunter vs. Carson MacDonald

Round 1 Feature Match: Blair Hunter vs. Carson MacDonald

September 21st, 2019

In a tournament filled with trendsetters Georgia’s Blair Hunter may be the most influential. Hunter’s credited by many as being the first major competitor to bring Cyber Dragons into the format, a strategy that’s quickly grown to become a major contender thanks to Hunter’s efforts and followup performances from competitors like Duy Nguyen, Calvin Chow and Ed Acepcion.

Lots of big Duelists here today are packing Chimeratech Megafleet Dragon and Chimeratech Fortress Dragon in their Extra Decks without any access to Cyber Dragon, just to beat this strategy.

Hunter’s opponent is Carson MacDonald from Toronto, Ontario, an up-and-coming Duelist attending his first YCS this weekend. He’s no stranger to competition: MacDonald’s home store is Untouchables Sports Card and Gaming, this month’s Featured Official Tournament Store and a long-standing staple of Dueling action in the Greater Toronto Area.  And while Orcust Cyber Dragons have been a big presence in the run-up to this YCS, thirteen year-old MacDonald is playing another Deck that’s seen lots of Regional tops: Infernoids with Lair of Darkness.

This is a match-up we didn’t expect to see here in Round 1, so let’s see how it plays out. Hunter won the roll and chose to start the first Duel.

Hunter had a hand of Cyber Dragon Herz, Orcust Knightmare, Monster Reborn, Danger!? Jackalope? and Cyber Dragon. He Set his Reborn, activated Jackalope’s effect and discarded Cyber Dragon to Special Summon the Danger, drawing a Cyber Dragon Core.  He Normal Summoned it and used Core’s ability to search his Deck for Cyber Repair Plant, then Link Summoned Salamangreat Almiraj to get Core into the Graveyard.  He activated Repair Plant to get Galaxy Soldier from his Deck, activated its effect to pitch Cyber Dragon Herz and Special Summon the Soldier, forming a Chain of Soldier Chain Link 1 and Herz Chain Link 2.

That got Hunter Cyber Dragon and another Galaxy Soldier from his Deck, and he pitched the Cyber Dragon to Special Summon the second Soldier.  He overlaid both Soldiers for Cyber Dragon Nova, then overlaid Nova with Cyber Dragon Infinity.  He Linked into Knightmare Cerberus, then Knightmare Mermaid and used its effect to Special Summon Orcust Knightmare, Link Summoning Galatea, the Orcust Automaton.  He banished Orcust Knightmare to send Orcust Harp Horror to his Graveyard, Summoned Orcust Cymbal Skeleton and Link Summoned Longirsu, the Orcust Orchestrator.

He banished Cymbal Skeleton to bring back Galatea, used Longirsu’s recycle effect, and traded it in for Dingirsu, the Orcust of the Evening Star.  He Set Orcust Crescendo from his Deck with Galatea to finish out.

MacDonald was up.  He Normal Summoned Infernoid Decatron, activated its effects and Hunter didn’t negate it.  MacDonald sent Infernoid Antra to his Graveyard from his Deck to mimic it with Decatron, and when he tried to use the borrowed Antra’s bounce effect Hunter stopped it with Cyber Dragon Infinity.  MacDonald continued with Lair of Darkness and Special Summoned Infernoid Seitsemas by banishing Antra and Decatron.   MacDonald attacked Jackalope to destroy it with Seitsemas, then activated its effect to banish Hunter’s Set Monster Reborn.  In Main Phase 2 he activated Void Vanishment and discarded Infernoid Devyaty to search Void Imagination.

MacDonald activated Void Imagination, and since Hunter controlled a monster that he Special Summoned from his Extra Deck MacDonald was free to use Imagination’s effect to send six Infernoids to his Graveyard to Summon Infernoid Tierra!  He used Tierra’s first effect to send three copies of Elder Entity N’tss from his Extra Deck to his Graveyard, leaving Hunter to yard one copy each of Chimeratech Megafleet Dragon, Chimeratech Fortress Dragon and Chimeratech Rampage Dragon.  Tierra’s second effect applied as well: Hunter lost two copies of Machine Duplication and an Orcust Knightmare while MacDonald sent Reasoning, Evenly Matched, and Super Polymerization off the top of his Deck to the Graveyard.

MacDonald targeted his own Tierra, Hunter’s Dingirsu, and Hunter’s Cyber Dragon Infinity as Chain Links 1, 2, and 3 with his three N’Tss effects, and Hunter used Dingirsu to protect his field.  MacDonald banished to Special Summon Infernoid Devyaty without effect and ended his turn, claiming an effect with Lair.

Hunter drew Orcust Harp Horror, controlling the Dingirsu with no materials, the Infinity with one, and his face-down Orcust Crescendo.  He Normal Summoned the Harp Horror, Linked it with Dingirsu and made another Galatea.  He banished Skeleton to try and revive the Galatea in his Graveyard and MacDonald banished the Galatea on the Chain with Devyaty’s effect, courtesy of Lair of Darkness.  Hunter banished Orcust Knightmare targeting his Cyber Dragon Infinity, sending World Legacy – “World Wand” to his Graveyard, then banished that to target his removed Galatea and bring her back to the field.

“Can I see your Graveyard?” asked Hunter.

“Yup.” MacDonald handed it across the table and Hunter took stock of the field.

“Attempt to enter Battle Phase,” Hunter declared.

“That’s fine.” Hunter was all business and MacDonald was unflinching.

Hunter attacked over Devyaty with Cyber Dragon Infinity, then moved to Main Phase 2 to take Infernoid Seitsemas with Infinity’s effect, attaching it as an Xyz Material.  He used Galatea to return Orcust Cymbal Skeleton to his Deck, then Set and flipped Orcustrated Babel.  Hunter got a Token with Lair of Darkness in the End Phase.

MacDonald drew to two cards in hand and Hunter recycled his World Wand with Galatea, courtesy of Orcustrated Babel.  He used Orcust Knightmare’s effect targeting Galatea to send Orcust Cymbal Skeleton back to his Graveyard, then used it to bring back Dingirsu, destroying MacDonald’s Lair of Darkness.  MacDonald Special Summoned his Seitsemas, moved to his Battle Phase and attacked Cyber Dragon Infinity, eliminating it and retrieving his stolen Seitsemas from earlier.  In the Battle Phase MacDonald attempted to banish with Seitsemas’ effect and Hunter blocked it with Orcust Crescendo.

“Main 2,” announced MacDonald, perusing his Graveyard before using Void Vanishment to search Void Feast.  He banished to Special Summon Infernoid Onuncu, blew away everything on the field and Set Feast.  In Hunter’s next Standby Phase MacDonald flipped the Feast, and Hunter Chained and banished Crescendo to get back an Orcust.  MacDonald resolved Feast to Special Summon Infernoid Sjette and two more Infernoid Decatrons; MacDonald used the Decatrons to send Infernoid Harmadik and Infernoid Patrulea to his Graveyard to copy them.

Hunter activated Cyber Emergency, his last card aside from his on-field Orcustrated Babel.  That got him Cyber Dragon Core.  He Normal Summoned it and activated its effect to search Cybernetic Overflow, then attacked the Decatron that had mimicked Harmadik, destroying it.  He Set the Overflow in Main Phase 2 to end.  MacDonald used Sjette in the End Phase to banish a card.

MacDonald drew to two cards still controlling that Decatron, doing its best impression of Infernoid Patrulea.  He used its effect to destroy Orcustrated Babel, then took control of Hunter’s Cyber Dragon Core with Mind Control. He banished to Special Summon back Infernoid Onuncu and activated Monster Gate, giving up Decatron.  He flipped and immediately Special Summoned Dinowrestler Pankratops from the top of his Deck.  MacDonald moved to the Battle Phase, attacked with Inoncu, then Pankratops, and dropped Hunter to 2300 Life Points.  In Main Phase 2 MacDonald Linked Core to Pankratops to Link Summon Knightmare Phoenix.

Hunter drew Cyber Dragon Herz, checked both Graveyards and quickly banished Cyber Dragon Core from his Graveyard to Special Summon Cyber Dragon Nachster.  He used its effect to bring back Cyber Dragon Infinity and took Infernoid Onuncu as an Xyz Material.  He Contact Fused Nachster with Knightmare Phoenix for Chimeratech Megafleet Dragon!  Both of Hunter’s monsters made direct attacks to drop MacDonald to 3100 Life Points and Macdonald conceded when he saw his next draw.

Carson MacDonald might not have been expecting Cyber Dragons for his Round 1 match-up, but Blair Hunter was almost certainly not expecting Infernoids!  Hunter fights to adapt and narrowly captures a long back-and-forth Duel.  Could he pull it off again?  Or would MacDonald fight back to take two straight and claim the Match?  If this was going to go to Game 3 time would become a factor, so both Duelists started playing at a breakneck pace.

“You can go first,” announced MacDonald.

Hunter opened with Orcust Cymbal Skeleton, Cybernetic Overflow, Danger!? Jackalope?  and two copies of Cyber Emergency. He Set Overflow and activated Jackalope’s effect, discarding Skeleton.  He Special Summoned Jackalope to draw Cyber Dragon Nachster, then activated Emergency to search Cyber Dragon Core.  He Normal Summoned it, used its ability to search his Deck for Cyber Repair Plant and Link Summoned Knightmare Cerberus.  Repair Plant got him Cyber Dragon Herz, he Linked away Knightmare Cerberus for Knightmare Mermaid and used it to Special Summon Orcust Knightmare. The Herz got him Cyber Dragon and he Link Summoned Galatea, the Orcust Automaton.

Hunter banished Orcust Knightmare to target Galatea, tossed Orcust Harp Horror to recycle Knightmare and search Orcustrated Babel, setting it and flipping it.  He brought out Orcust Knightmare again to Link Summon with Galatea into Longirsu, the Orcust Orchestrator, banished Orcust Cymbal Skeleton and brought out Galatea, then overlaid Longirsu with Dingirsu, the Orcust of the Evening Star, attaching the Skeleton.  “Pass.”  No Cyber Dragon shenanigans yet from Hunter.

MacDonald opened up with Infernoid Decatron to send Infernoid Antra to his Graveyard, booting Galatea back to the Extra Deck.  He discarded Ahrima, the Wicked Warden to search Lair of Darkness, activated Void Imagination with four cards in hand, and Hunter responded with Cybernetic Overflow, banishing Cyber Dragon and Herz to destroy Void Imagination and Decatron. MacDonald pressed with Infernoid Patrulea to target Hunter’s Field Spell, then played Lair of Darkness.  A lightning quick exchange left Hunter on a Dingirsu and an Orcust Knightmare heading into his next turn.

Hunter used Cyber Emergency to search his Deck for Cyber Dragon Core, Normal Summoned it and used its effect to get Cybernetic Overflow.  He Linked Orcust Knightmare and Dingirsu for a fresh Galatea, used her effect to target his banished Harp Horror, sent it back to his Deck and searched Orcust Crescendo to Set it.  He banished his Orcust Knightmare to target Galatea, send World Legacy – “World Wand” to his Graveyard, banished that and Special Summoned his other Harp Horror. He sent Galatea to attack into Patrulea, destroying her, and he followed up banishing Skeleton to bring back Dingirsu.  He loaded it up with the banished Skeleton and attacked, then swung with Core and Harp Horror to put MacDonald at 5100 Life Points.  Hunter still had his full 8000 LP.

“Main Phase 2…” Hunter Linked Core and Harp Horror for another Galatea, then Set Cybernetic Overflow and Eradicator Epidemic Virus.  He Summoned a Torment Token with Lair of Darkness in his End Phase.

In MacDonald’s Draw Phase Hunter banished World Wand for a Special Summon and activated Eradicator Epidemic Virus to Tribute Dingirsu and call spells for the Virus’ effect.  MacDonald had no Spell Cards in hand, but he lost his Lair of Darkness.

MacDonald moved to his Battle Phase with a blank field and activated Evenly Matched to force out Hunter’s Orcust Crescendo.  MacDonald banished to Special Summon Infernoid Devyaty in Main Phase 2 and Hunter Chained Overflow!  He banished Core to destroy the Devyaty, using Overflow’s destruction effect to search Cyber Emergency.   MacDonald passed, clearly out of options. Hunter drew Danger!? Tsuchinoko? and moments later he was making Borrelsword Dragon unopposed!

Carson MacDonald puts forth an impressive showing with Lair Infernoids, but Blair Hunter manages to adapt to the match-up and eke out a 2-0 win to start off Day 1. It looks like Cyber Dragon Orcusts could be a big factor in today’s tournament, but some notable competitors are teching hard for the match-up. We’ll keep an eye on Hunter’s performance throughout the day so check back for updates.