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Four More Characters from Speed Duel GX: Duel Academy Box

March 17th, 2022

The Speed Duel GX: Duel Academy Box is arriving on Arpil 1st, with a whopping 200 Speed Duel cards, 20 all-new Skill Cards, and 8 collectible Secret Rares per box. Last time around we showed you four characters making their Speed Duel debuts – Jaden, Aster, Chazz, and Jesse. We showed you their Skills, and what their Speed Duel Decks are all about.

This time we’re looking at four more characters featured in the Duel Academy Box, each with two unique Skills and an entire Deck of their own. Square off against your friends in sealed play, pick and choose the cards you want to work with to build your own Speed Duel Deck, or get in some draft Duels! Whatever you want to do, the Duel Academy Box makes it easy, and these four Duel Academy icons are going to play starring roles.

Alexis Rhodes

One of the most enduring fan-favorites of Yu-Gi-Oh! GX, Alexis Rhodes was one of the top students in Duel Academy’s Obelisk Blue dorm. Her signature Deck revolved around “Cyber” monsters like Cyber Tutu and Etoile Cyber, but her strategy really took off when she started playing Cyber Angel cards as well: powerful Ritual Monsters that have had a big impact on tournament scenes ever since they were first released!

If you play Yu-Gi-Oh! TCG in the current Advanced Format you may be familiar with Cyber Angel Benten and Cyber Angel Idaten, and you’ll find both in Alexis’ portion of the Duel Academy Box. Her Speed Duel Deck represents Alexis at her Obelisk Blue peak, and it’s a combination of her best Ritual and Fusion Monsters: she can break your opponent’s defenses with the effects of Cyber Angel Izana and strike for game, or Fusion Summon a massive Cyber Blader to swing over monsters for big damage.

Alexis’ Deck has lots of support for her Ritual Monsters: Senju of the Thousand Hands and Sonic Bird are classic cards that make Ritual Summoning easier, calling out spectacular monsters without costing you every card you have. Her smaller Ritual Monsters have effects that get you more free cards too, helping balance out the cost of your Ritual Summons.

But she doesn’t rely on Polymerization for her Fusion Summons. Instead, Alexis’ first Skill Card fills the gap, so you never have to wait around: twice per Duel, Cyber Blade Fusion lets you discard a card in place of Polymerization, to Fusion Summon Cyber Blader! You’ll use an Etoile Cyber or Blade Skater from your field as Fusion Material, and the other material can come from your hand, field, or most importantly your Deck. Cyber Blade Fusion also gives Cyber Blader an extra 400 ATK for a total of 2500 Attack Points. Yes, that means if your opponent controls two monsters, Cyber Blader‘s effect will double to a whopping 5000 ATK.

If Fusion Summons aren’t your speed and you’d rather lean in on Ritual Summons, Alexis’ second Skill Card is for you: Machine Angel Ascension flips when you activate it, and from there it offers two once-per-Duel effects. First, you can discard a Spell Card and search your Deck for a “Cyber Angel” Ritual Monster, or a “Machine Angel” Ritual Spell. Then the second effect lets you shuffle a “Cyber Angel” or “Machine Angel” Ritual card from your Graveyard back into your Deck. It helps you put together your best plays, while keeping you from running out of steam.

If you’re building your own Speed Duel Deck you’ll find a lot of great cards here, including Cosmic Cyclone, back again after its Speed Duel debut in the original Battle City Box. You’ll also score D.D. Warrior Lady – you’re guaranteed the Common in Alexis’ Deck, but she’s also appearing as a Secret Rare for the first time ever as one of the random Secret Rares you might find in your Duel Academy Box!

Zane Truesdale

Do you know who else was an Obelisk Blue student? This guy! Zane Truesdale, the King of Duel Academy and the master of Cyber Style Dueling, is in attendance for the Duel Academy Box! And just like you might expect, his Deck’s a mix of the Cyber Dragon and “Cyberdark” strategies, including cards like Cyberdark Dragon, Cyber End Dragon, and the mighty Chimeratech Overdragon!

Does this Deck have Overload Fusion to make a massive Chimeratech for the win? You know it does! It’s also got Future Fusion to set it up, Polymerization to keep the purple monsters flowing, and Cyberdark Impact! to unleash Zane’s dark side. The Main Deck’s loaded with Zane hallmarks like Cyber Phoenix, Cyber Valley, Exploder Dragon, and the trio of Cyberdark Horn, Cyberdark Edge, and Cyberdark Keel. And sure, you’ve got Proto-Cyber Dragon to help you make your Fusion Summons. But you’ve also got the mighty Cyber Dragon itself. You’ll find a Common copy in every Duel Academy Box, but lucky Duelists may also find a Secret Rare!

Zane’s first Skill is an outrageously powerful effect that’s going to end the Duel one way or another: you can activate Forbidden Cyber Style Technique once per Duel, and only if your LP is 1500 or less, and you control no monsters. NaiI those conditions, and you’ll reduce your Life Points to 50 to Special Summon up to 3 Machine “Cyber” monsters from your hand, Deck, or Graveyard, and turn them into Cyber Dragons with 2100 ATK and 1600 DEF! You can’t Tribute them and you can’t attack with anything but Fusion Monsters for the turn. You can’t Summon or Set monsters for the rest of the turn either, except for Fusion Summons. But with the right Fusion card, it’s an instant Cyber End Dragon!

If that all sounds a little too risky, Zane has a second Skill called Cyberdark Style. It’s pretty good too, and to be fair, it won’t make you drop to 50 Life Points. Once per turn, it lets you choose 3 “Cyberdark” monsters from your Deck, and your opponent chooses one at random to add to your hand. Then you choose a card in your hand and shuffle it back into your Deck with the other two “Cyberdark” monsters. You can use this Skill up to three times per Duel, too: once when your LP is 3000 or less, again when you’re under 2000, and a third time if you’re under 1000. It won’t be very useful in sealed play, since you only have three “Cyberdark” monsters; you’ll need to reveal a full three every time you use this Skill. But in regular constructed play you can run multiple copies of each “Cyberdark” monster, so this Skill makes it really easy to unleash Cyberdark Dragon.

Oh, and if Cyber Dragon as a possible Secret Rare wasn’t enough? You might find a Cyber End Dragon Secret Rare, too. It’s been almost 11 years since we last saw Cyber End Dragon in Secret Rare foil, all the way back in Legendary Collection 2 The Duel Academy Years in 2011.

Axel Brodie

Of course, not every student at Duel Academy belonged to Obelisk Blue. In fact, some of the most memorable Duelists in Yu-Gi-Oh! GX were transfers from other schools entirely! We already revealed that Jesse Anderson was in the Duel Academy Box, but you’ll also find Skills for Axel Brodie…and that means his “Volcanic” cards are coming to Speed Duels!

You may already know about Volcanics, but if you need a recap, let’s get to it! Volcanics revolve around Blaze Accelerator: a Continuous Spell that lets you target an opposing monster, discard a Pyro-Type monster with 500 ATK or less, and destroy whatever you targeted. It’s literally just a big cannon that blows away your opponent’s monsters. Your best ammo’s Volcanic Shell, a pint-sized Pyro-Type monster you can discard for Blaze Accelerator. Once Volcanic Shell‘s in your Graveyard, you can pay 500 Life Points for its effect, and search your Deck for another copy to keep up the heat.

You can get your Volcanic Shell with Volcanic Blaster and recycle them with cards like Royal Firestorm Guards, and you can add Blaze Accelerator from your Deck to your hand with Volcanic Rocket. With 1900 ATK the Rocket’s a Level 4 powerhouse in Speed Duels, and it gets you a “Blaze Accelerator” card from your Deck or Graveyard. It’s a fan-favorite, and it’s another Secret Rare you might find in your Duel Academy Box.

Axel’s more advanced strategies never really made it in the Advanced Format, but they get a new lease on life in Speed Duels. You can play an even stronger Continuous Spell Card called Tri-Blaze Accelerator from your hand by sending a face-up Blaze Accelerator from your field to your Graveyard. Tri-Blaze is a lot like the regular Accelerator, but you can fire off any Pyro-Type monster you want – not just the small ones – and when it blows away an opposing monster, you’ll deal 500 damage as well.

On top of that, there’s Volcanic Doomfire. An absolute tyrant, you Special Summon Axel’s boss monster from your hand by sending Tri-Blaze Accelerator from the field to the Graveyard. It’s a 3000 ATK behemoth that forces your opponent’s monsters to attack it. When it destroys a monster in battle, it blows up the rest of your opponent’s monsters with an effect that deals 500 damage for every monster destroyed. Brutal.

Volcanic Doomfire’s pretty incredible, but setting up Tri-Blaze Accelerator is tough, since you need to get Blaze Accelerator going first, then get to Tri-Blaze, and have Volcanic Doomfire in hand. Volcanic Rocket can add either Accelerator card, but it’s still tough to pull off. That’s why Axel’s Skills are both geared to help: his recommended Skill for sealed, Blaze Accelerator Deployment, lets you change the name of a Blaze Accelerator you control to “Tri-Blaze Accelerator.” You can just play Blaze Accelerator, switch its name, and then send it off for Volcanic Doomfire!

Axel’s second Skill might be even better: once per Duel, Volcanic Cannon lets you send Tri-Blaze Accelerator straight from the field to the Graveyard, to Special Summon Volcanic Doomfire from your hand, Graveyard, or your Deck! That means as long as you draw one of the “Blaze Accelerator” Spell Cards, you can search the other with Volcanic Rocket, play your Spells, and then use the Skill Card to put Volcanic Doomfire right into play, even if you never drew it. With three copies of Volcanic Rocket in a constructed Deck, that could be a big deal in Speed Duel tournaments.

Dr. Vellian Crowler

Finally, the Duel Academy Box isn’t just about students! Dr. Vellian Crowler’s making his Speed Duel debut, complemented by the clockwork chaos of his Ancient Gear cards! The majority of Ancient Gear monsters have effects that stop your opponent from activating Spell or Trap Cards when they attack. That’s not super useful in the Advanced Format. But in Speed Duels? It can play around some very powerful stuff.

Crowler’s got strong basic attackers on his side, cards like Mechanicalchaser and Ancient Gear Knight, but his real strength lies in his higher-Level monsters. Ancient Gear Beast and the legendary Ancient Gear Golem normally require a Tribute to Normal Summon, but you can work around that with cards like Geartown, Card Advance, and Ancient Gear Castle. Monsters like Giant Rat and The Trojan Horse can help too, and you’ll even find Dekoichi the Battlechanted Locomotive to balance out the sheer cost of Tribute Summoning. Oh, and Dekoichi? It’s also a possible Secret Rare here, for the first time in Dueling history!

Crowler’s also packing the Fusion Monster Ultimate Ancient Gear Golem, a 4400 ATK behemoth that inflicts piercing battle damage and has that Ancient Gear-type protection when it’s attacking. If it’s ever destroyed, you get to Special Summon the regular Ancient Gear Golem from your Graveyard, too. Ultimate Ancient Gear Golem‘sawesome, but it’s normally tough to Summon: it needs Ancient Gear Golem and two more Ancient Gear monsters as Fusion Materials, plus a Fusion Spell to bring it all together.

But don’t worry: in sealed play, the recommended Skill for Crowler’s Deck is Ancient Fusion. It’s another Skill that sort of replaces Polymerization: once per Duel, you can discard a card to Fusion Summon an Ancient Gear Fusion Monster, using monsters from your field as Fusion Material. And good news: if one of your Fusion Materials on the field is Ancient Gear Golem, you can use monsters from your hand or Deck for the rest. Your opponent won’t take damage for the remainder of the turn, and the damage from the Fusion Monster is halved, but if you can get Ancient Gear Golem on the table you’ll upgrade to Ultimate Ancient Gear Golem faster than you can say “puffy ruffled shirt collar.”

Crowler’s other Skill might be familiar to Yu-Gi-Oh! DUEL LINKS players. It’s called Middle Age Mechs, and it’s basically an Ancient Gear Castle that starts in play. You flip it at the start of your first turn, you put it in your center Spell & Trap Zone, and from that point it boosts your Ancient Gears by 300 ATK. Also, each time a monster’s Normal Summoned or Set, Middle Age Mechs gets a counter, and you can Tribute it for the Tribute Summon of a high-Level Ancient Gear (each counter replaces one Tribute). That helps you make the most of something like Ancient Gear Engineer if you don’t have a spare monster, and it makes Summoning Ancient Gear Golem super easy. Again, Ancient Gear Golem‘s way powerful in Speed Duels. Its piercing damage is huge, in a format where your opponent only has 4000 Life Points.

That’s all for today, but we’re not done yet! Yu-Gi-Oh! GX was all about guest spots, so in our final article we’ll show you four supporting characters with new Skills and a few cards in the Duel Academy Box: Bastion Misawa, Syrus Truesdale, Tyranno Hassleberry, and Jesse…? No… that’s…! Stay tuned, you won’t want to miss it!