Home > 2023 North America World Championship Qualifier, Championships > Round 9 Feature Match: Nathaniel Christmas vs. Max Ward

Round 9 Feature Match: Nathaniel Christmas vs. Max Ward

July 8th, 2023

Both of these Duelists are 7-1 with uncommon Decks in the current field, but are doing extremely well. One of them will be moving onto Day 2 with 24 points and an extremely good chance of making Top 64, the other will have to fight for their tournament life at 7-2.

Nathaniel Christmas, hailing from Los Angeles, is here piloting quite a unique strategy for the tournament: HERO! Not only is he using a HERO Deck, but it’s also the highest rarity! Maxx Ward is from New Jersey, using Rikka Sunavalon!

It’s time to Duel!

Duel 1

Christmas began with a hand of 2 Book of Moon, Rivalry of Warlords, Forbidden Droplet, and Vision HERO Vyon. He started by Normal Summoning Vision HERO Vyon, sending Elemental HERO Shadow Mist to the Graveyard, which added Elemental HERO Liquid Soldier to his hand with its effect. He banished Shadow Mist with Vyon adding Polymerization, quickly activating it to send Liquid Soldier and Vyon to the Graveyard to Fusion Summon Elemental HERO Sunrise. Liquid Soldier was activated Chain Link 1, with Chain Link 2 being Elemental HERO Sunrise which would add Miracle Fusion, while Liquid Soldier drew him a third Book of Moon and Destiny HERO Plasma, then he discarded Forbidden Droplet. Christmas threw down 4 facedowns and passed play.

Christmas, ready to get his game on!

Ward was up, activating Rikka Konkon, then activated Rikka Glamour, Tributing Christmas’s Elemental HERO Sunrise to add Snowdrop the Rikka Fairy and Therion “Lily” Borea. Ward followed up with Unexpected Dai to Summon Sunseed Genius Loci which was immediately Set by Book of Moon! Ward Normal Summoned Primula the Rikka Fairy and Link Summoned Sunavalon Dryas with both monsters, and followed that by activating Therion “Lily” Borea to equip Primula from the Graveyard and Summon the Borea. The Summon was met by a second Book of Moon from Christmas, and Ward countered by activating Sunvine Sowing to Summon another Sunseed Genius Loci, taking 1000 damage in the process.

Sunavalon Dryas activated due to the Life Point reduction, giving Ward back 1000 Life Points and then he Summoned Sunvine Healer, giving him another 300 Life Points. His 2 Sunavalon monsters were used to Link Summon Aromaseraphy Jasmine, which Tributed his Set Therion “Lily” Borea to Summon Rikka Petal from the Deck. Petal was activated to add Rikka Princess to hand, before using Jasmine and Loci to Link Summon Sunavalon Melias. Melias then Summoned Sunseed Genius Loci from the Graveyard and Rikka Konkon was activated, setting Rikka Sheet directly from Ward’s Deck. Ward used Loci and Melias to Link Summon Benghalancer the Resurgent! Ward activated Snowdrop the Rikka Fairy by Tributing Loci, Summoning both his Rikka Princess and Snowdrop the Rikka Fairy from his hand. Snowdrop was activated next, making all Plants currently on the field Level 4 with its effect and he used 2 Rikka monsters to Summon Rikka Queen Strenna. In response, Christmas responded with Book of Moon, cutting Ward off from extending further with his Strenna. Rikka Princess and Benghalancer were used to Link Summon Sylvan Dancepione, and Ward used Benghalancer to banish 3 Plants and Special Summon his monster again. He attacked with his Sylvan and Benghalancer, then passed turn.

Ward, eager to Duel.

Christmas drew Vision HERO Vyon for turn. He chose to Summon his HERO and send Destiny HERO – Malicious, only to be met with Rikka Sheet. Ward Tributed his set Rikka Queen Strenna to take the Vyon, triggering Strenna to Summon Teardrop the Rikka Queen with Rikka Queen Strenna as material. Christmas continued and activated Malicious, only to be met with Rikka Princess and he Tributed his stolen Vyon to negate Christmas’s monster effect. Not to be stopped, he used Miracle Fusion banishing 2 HERO monsters to Summon Elemental HERO Absolute Zero, drawing Elemental HERO Stratos and Mask Change, discarding the Mask Change in the process. Benghalanacer was activated to return Absolute Zero to the Extra Deck, and Christmas had seen enough!

Rikka comes out on top in Duel 1!

Despite continually pushing through multiple interruptions, Christmas couldn’t overcome the power of Ward’s Rikkas in Duel 1!

Duel 2

Christmas started the second Duel with a hand of Elemental HERO Liquid Soldier, Reinforcement of the Army, Vision HERO Faris, Fusion Destiny and Mask Change. He kicked things off with Reinforcement of the Army adding Cross Keeper, prompting his opponent to immediately read it. Cross Keeper was activated next, Special Summoning Elemental HERO Liquid Soldier, which was Tributed for the Summon of Vision HERO Faris, who placed Vision HERO Increase to the Spell and Trap Zone. Increase Tributed Faris and Special Summoned itself and Vision HERO Vyon which sent Elemental HERO Shadow Mist to the Graveyard and added Elemental HERO Stratos. Christmas used Vyon to banish Faris from the Graveyard to add Polymerization, then Link Summoned Xtra HERO Infernal Devicer, which added Elemental HERO Neos to hand. Next, Christmas used Polymerization to Summon Elemental HERO Flame Wingman – Infernal Rage. He used his Cross Keeper as Chain Link 1 and Infernal Rage as Chain Link 2 to add Favorite Contact. He drew Gozen Match as well as Droll & Lock Bird (putting the Droll to the bottom) from Cross Keeper, and used Infernal Rage to Summon Elemental HERO Sunrise, adding Miracle Fusion to hand then Link Summoned Xtra HERO Wonder Driver, before activating Miracle Fusion to Summon Elemental HERO Absolute Zero, giving him another Gozen Match and A HERO Lives with Wonder Driver Setting the Miracle Fusion once again. Miracle Fusion was activated again, this time Summoning Wake Up Your Elemental HERO! Finally, Fusion Destiny was activated, sending Destiny HERO – Malicious and Destiny HERO – Denier from the Deck to Fusion Summon Destiny HERO – Destroyer Phoenix Enforcer. Christmas used Malicious to Summon another copy of itself from the Deck, then used it with Wonder to Link Summon Xtra HERO Cross Crusader, which Summoned the Denier with its effect, who placed Destiny HERO – Malicious on top of the Deck. He activated Cross Crusader Tributing Denier to add Destiny HERO Dark Angel. In response to Christmas using Destroyer Phoenix Enforcer’s effect, Ward chained Nibiru, the Primal Being.

Nibiru, the Primal Being, every HERO Duelist’s worst foe.

Ward Summoned Nibiru to his field and Summoned a Primal Being Token to Christmas’s field. Then, Destroyer Phoenix Enforcer resolved, destroying both the Token and the Nibiru. With 3 Destiny HEROes in the Graveyard, Christmas Summoned Destiny HERO – Dark Angel to Ward’s field, throwing down 3 facedowns, and Special Summoned Malicious in Defense Position passing play!

That’s a lot of Spell Cards…

During Ward’s Draw Phase, he immediately conceded with a laugh. Due to Destiny HERO – Dark Angel, he couldn’t resolve his Spell Cards, and his hand of all Spell Cards meant he was done for. We’re on to Duel 3!

Duel 3

Ward began the final Duel by Normal Summoning Rikka Primula, then Summoning Rikka Princess. Using both, he Link Summoned Sylvan Dancepione, then excavated 3 cards with its effect to Summon Rikka Petal which added Mudan the Rikka Fairy to his hand. Mudan was activated and Tributed the Sylvan Dancepoine to add Rikka Konkon. He activated Konkon next, and contemplated carefully what to do, ultimately using Konkon’s effect to Set Rikka Glamour, which he activated to Tribute Mudan and add Therion “Lily” Borea and Snowdrop the Rikka Fairy. Snowdrop was Summoned alongside Borea by Snowdrop’s effect, and Borea sent his in-hand copy of Therion “King” Regulus to the Graveyard to add Therion Discolosseum to hand before Xyz Summoning Teardrop the Rikka Queen and activating Therion Discolusseum to add another Therion “Lily” Borea. Ward considered his options for a moment before deciding to activate his Borea, targeting Therion “King” Regulus, then passed play to Christmas.

Christmas drew for turn, having a hand of Destiny HERO – Plasma, Destiny HERO – Malicious, Gozen Match, Vision HERO Increase, Vision HERO Faris, and Fusion Destiny. With a sigh, he started off with Faris discarding Malicious, Summoning Faris, and placing Vision HERO Increase to the Spell and Trap Zone from Deck. He banished Malicious to Summon his second copy from the Deck before Normal Summoning his second Increase, asking for a response.

When Ward had nothing, Christmas Tributed all 3 monsters for Destiny HERO – Plasma, which he promptly activated targeting Ward’s Teardrop the Rikka Queen, trying to equip it to his Plasma. Ward chained Rikka Princess Tributing Therion “Lily” Borea to negate the effect. Christmas activated his last card in hand, Fusion Destiny to send Elemental HERO Neos and Destiny HERO – Denier to Summon Destiny HERO – Destroyer Phoenix Enforcer! In response to Denier’s effect, Ward played Ghost Belle & Haunted Mansion. Quickly going to the Battle Phase, Christmas destroyed his Increase and Teardrop the Rikka Queen with Destroyer Phoenix Enforcer and attacked with both of his HERO monsters before setting Gozen Match and passing play. During the Draw Phase, Christmas flipped Gozen Match and was met by Ward’s Rose Archer negating his Trap Card! Ward activated Rikka Konkon in his Field Spell Zone, replacing his Therion Discolusseum, and Christmas Destroyed his Destiny HERO – Destroyer Phoenix Enforcer to take out Ward’s Petal for game!

Starlight Rare Destiny HERO – Destroyer Phoenix Enforcer? He’s Dueling in STYLE!

Nathaniel Christmas emerges victorious, after getting his game on in true Jaden style with an 8-1 record. He’s in a great position to make Top 64 tomorrow, so stay tuned to see all the action.