Home > 2023/11 - YCS Richmond, Yu-Gi-Oh! Championship Series > Ultimate Time Wizard Format Finals: Ernie Aranda vs. James Johnson

Ultimate Time Wizard Format Finals: Ernie Aranda vs. James Johnson

November 5th, 2023

Welcome to the Ultimate Time Wizard Finals! This tournament used the April 2010 Advanced Format rules, an era where Synchro Monsters were new and the possibilities were endless.

Here at the Finals table we have Ernie Aranda from Los Angeles, playing a Vayu Turbo Deck, facing off against James “Arc” Johnson from Maine, using a Superancient Deepsea King Coelacanth Deck! These Duelists are originally from opposite sides of the country, but they now both live in New York and go to the same local tournament!

Aranda made sure to sing Johnson’s praises, saying that his Deck list and the rest of the Top 8 were pioneered by Johnson. But that doesn’t mean he’s gonna go easy on him – only one Duelist can come out ahead and take home the GIANT Minerva, the Exalted Lightsworn!

James Johnson, Not a Freaky Fish Guy

DJohnson started with Mystical Space Typhoon, Tongyo, Threatening Roar, Cold Wave, and Superancient Deepsea King Coelacanth; he drew Treeborn Frog. He Set Treeborn and passed.

Aranda Set a monster and two back row cards.

Johnson drew Royal Swamp Eel. He Set it and Threatening Roar.

Aranda Flip Summoned Ryko, Lightsworn Hunter, destroying Royal Swamp Eel and getting a Blackwing – Vayu the Emblem of Honor in his Graveyard. Aranda used Mystical Space Typhoon, but Johnson Chained the targeted Threatening Roar. Aranda Set a monster.

Johnson drew Oyster Meister and Set it.

Aranda Normal Summoned Armageddon Knight, sending Blackwing – Sirocco the Dawn to the Graveyard. He used Vayu’s effect with Sirocco to Special Summon Blackwing Armed Wing with its effects negated, then Special Summoned Blackwing – Gale the Whirlwind from his hand. He Flip Summoned Plaguespreader Zombie, then tuned it to Ryko for Armory Arm. He Special Summoned Plaguespreader from his Graveyard with its effect, tuning it to Armageddon Knight for Goyo Guardian! Goyo attacked Treeborn and stole it! Armed Wing destroyed Oyster Meister, then Gale and Armory Arm attacked directly to drop Johnson to 4900 Life Points.

Johnson drew Fishborg Blaster. He played Mystical Space Typhoon to destroy Aranda’s Bottomless Trap Hole. Then he Normal Summoned Tongyo and attacked Gale, but Aranda had Dimensional Prison! Aranda had enough ATK to end the Duel with Johnson’s field wide open.

Blackwings capture the first Duel!

DJohnson started first again, this time with a hand of Cold Wave, Moray of Greed, Coelacanth, and two copies of Salvage. He drew Royal Swamp Eel. He started with Moray, putting the WATER monsters back to draw Enemy Controller, Fishborg Blaster, and Oyster Meister. He Set Fishborg Blaster.

Aranda simply passed his turn with an empty field.

Ernie Aranda has the face of a man who definitely does not have Gorz

Johnson drew Swap Frog. He Normal Summoned it to send Treeborn Frog to the Graveyard. He used Swap Frog’s other effect to return it to his hand.

Aranda Set one back row card.

Johnson drew Dupe Frog, then Special Summoned Treeborn from his Graveyard. He Special Summoned Swap Frog, sending Dupe from his hand to the Graveyard, and Swap’s effect put Substitoad in the Graveyard. He then used Salvage to put Substitoad and Dupe in his hand, and Aranda flipped Trap Dustshoot! Substitoad was returned to the Deck, cutting off Johnson’s plan. Johnson simply returned Swap to his hand, and repeated the exact same play with his second copy of Salvage. He Normal Summoned Substitoad. He used its effect, Tributing Treeborn to Special Summon another Swap. That Swap put a second Substitoad in the Graveyard.

He used Substitoad again, Tributing Swap for a new Swap, which sent away his last Substitoad. He Tributed the last Swap for a Defense Position Dupe Frog, then Tributed Fishborg Blaster for another Defense Position Dupe to lock Aranda out of any attacks. He bounced Swap back to his hand, then Normal Summoned his third Dupe. He Tributed that with Substitoad to get Flip Flop Frog into play, and used its effect to flip it face-down. He’d thinned his Deck extensively and Set up a very tough wall!

Aranda Set a monster and a back row card.

Johnson drew Caius the Shadow Monarch. He played Cold Wave, then Special Summoned Fishborg Blaster from his Graveyard, pitching Swap Frog. He used Substitoad to Tribute Fishborg and get Unifrog into play. He Flip Summoned Flip Flop Frog to bounce Aranda’s Set monster. He attacked directly with his Frogs, and Unifrog destroyed Aranda’s Set Torential Tribute. Flip Flop flopped face-down again.

Aranda Normal Summoned Fossil Dyna Pachycephalo and passed.

Johnson drew a second Oyster Meister. He used Flip Flop Frog to bounce Pachycephalo. Flip Flop attacked directly, and Aranda Special Summoned Gorz the Emissary of Darkness, along with a 500 ATK / 500 DEF Emissary of Darkness Token. Unifrog attacked directly. In Main Phase 2, Johnson used Substitoad to Tribute Summon Caius, banishing Gorz and dealing 1000 damage. He flipped Flip Flop Frog face-down again.

Aranda Normal Summoned Dark Grepher, discarding Vayu to send Sirocco to the Graveyard. He used Vayu to Special Summon Armed Wing. He Set one back row card.

Johnson drew Tongyo. Unifrog attacked directly, and Aranda flipped Deck Devastation Virus! He Tributed Armed Wing to wipe out all the Frogs, as well as Tongyo from the hand. The two Dupes’ effects returned Unifrog and Swap to Johnson’s hand. Caius attacked and destroyed Dark Grepher. Johnson Normal Summoned Oyster Meister and Set Enemy Controller to finish.

Aranda Set a monster.

Johnson drew Coelacanth, which was safe from Deck Devastation Virus. He Special Summoned Fishborg from his Graveyard, ditching Swap Frog. Then he Normal Summoned Unifrog, and used all his small monsters to Synchro Synchro Summon Brionac, Dragon of the Ice Barrier! Brionac cleared the way for Johnson to attack directly, and we’re moving to a third Duel!

Brionac closes it out!

Aranda Set a monster to start the third and final Duel.

Johnson had Substitoad, Flip Flop, Tongyo, Treeborn, and Fishborg. He drew Heavy Storm. He Set Treeborn.

Aranda Normal Summoned Dark Grepher, using it to discard Vayu and send Sirocco to the Graveyard. He used the Vayu to Special Summon Armed Wing. Armed Wing destroyed Treeborn, and Dark Grepher attacked directly. He Set one back row card.

Johnson drew another Treeborn, and Special Summoned the one in his Graveyard. Aranda flipped up Compulsory Evacuation Device to bounce Treeborn to the hand! Johnson Set Flip Flop and Heavy Storm.

Aranda used Dark Grepher’s effect, discarding Necro Gardna to send another Vayu to the Graveyard. He Normal Summoned Plaguespreader and tuned it to Dark Grepher for Goyo Guardian. Goyo attacked Flip Flop, which bounced Armed Wing. Aranda did not use Goyo’s effect.

Johnson drew Mystical Space Typhoon. He Normal Summoned Substitoad, Tributing it for its effect to Special Summon Swap Frog. Swap sent another Swap to the Graveyard. He bounced Swap back to his hand.

Aranda Normal Summoned Armageddon Knight, putting Sirocco in his Graveyard. He used Vayu to Special Summon Armed Wing once again. He attacked with everything to wipe out Johnson’s Life Points!

One more Vayu Summon finishes the Match

Ernie Aranda is your Ultimate Time Wizard Champion!