Deck Profile: Brendan Beckmann’s Malefic Deck
With Dragunities and Gravekeepers being 2 of the most-played Decks at YCS Charlotte, Field Spells were everywhere. Many Duelists experimented with Malefic monsters to try and take advantage of that. Headliners like Malefic Cyber End Dragon and Malefic Stardust Dragon leant big muscle, carrying two Duelists to the top 32. One of the big advantages these monsters offer is that they’re so easy to Special Summon. Special Summoning Malefic Cyber End or Malefic Stardust is as easy as removing the original version of that monster from your Extra Deck, so Duelists who play Malefics will often overwhelm their opponent by easily rolling over cards like Solemn Warning. If you lose your first monster to Warning, you can just Special Summon an even bigger threat.
While all the Malefic-users that we saw in the Top 32 of Charlotte were splashing Malefics into Gravekeeper Decks, some Duelists have seen the power these monsters hold and are going all the way with dedicated strategies this weekend. Brendan Beckmann is 1 of them. While his Deck includes Necrovalley, it’s totally different from a real Gravekeeper strategy: this Deck’s all about the Malefics!
3 Malefic Cyber End Dragon
3 Malefic Stardust Dragon
3 Gravekeeper’s Commandant
3 Fusilier Dragon, The Dual Mode Beast
3 Upstart Goblin
2 Pot of Duality
2 Mystical Space Typhoon
2 Royal Tribute
1 Allure of Darkness
1 Mirror Force
2 Dark Bribe
1 Solemn Judgment
3 Skill Drain
2 Solemn Warning
1 Seven Tools of the Bandit
1 Starlight Road
1 Torrential Tribute
2 Eradicator Epidemic Virus
Plunging into an all-new Deck type that’s under-explored by other Duelists can be a tough decision some times, especially when powerful Decks like Samurai, Dragunities, and Gravekeepers are running rampant. Beckmann’s inspiration? “This is similar to a Malefic Deck that beat me this past weekend at a Regional in Colorado,” he explained. “I played Samurais in the Regional, but this Deck gave me alot of trouble, so I think it’s the best choice for this YCS.” As imposing as the Samurai monsters are, none of them can match the sheer power of Malefic Cyber End Dragon’s 4000 Attack Points! As long as Beckmann can slip a Necrovalley past Legendary Six Samurai – Shi En’s negation effect, his Malefic monsters can match or beat almost anything the Samurai strategy is capable of. And since most Samurai Decks are light on monster-destroying Trap Cards, a Malefic Duelist like Beckmann can make repeated Special Summons in a single turn, playing around cards that would throw less aggressive Decks off course.
“I use Necrovalley because it’s a good searchable Field Spell,” detailed Beckmann. “It lets me play Royal Tribute, and I can use it to its full potential here just because of the low monster count.” Since Beckmann only plays 11 monsters in his Main Deck, it’s pretty rare that he’ll have to discard any of his own for Royal Tribute’s effect. Malefic monsters have an effect that destroys them if they’re ever on the field without an active Field Spell, so Necrovalley is a lynchpin for this strategy.
With that said, Beckmann’s not putting all his dragon eggs in just 1 basket: he’s also playing Skill Drain. This Continuous Trap Card’s effect negates the effect text of all face-up monster cards on the field, and that includes the effect that would destroy a Malefic monster when there isn’t an active Field Spell.
Skill Drain makes it far easier for Beckmann to keep his Malefics around, and along with 3 Necrovalley and 3 Gravekeeper’s Commandant, he’s doing everything he can to make sure he always Summons his best monsters. But Skill Drain opens up many other advantages as well. “The Gravekeeper matchup is decent just because Skill Drain is negating their effects,” Beckmann explained. It’ll also stop the all-important abilities of Dragunity Dux and Dragunity Legionnaire in a Dragunity Deck, and the effects of Samurai monsters like Legendary Six Samurai – Kageki and Legendary Six Samurai – Shi En. Beckmann runs Fusilier Dragon, the Dual-Mode Beast as well: when Skill Drain’s active, he can Normal Summon it with 2800 ATK, negating its effect that would halve its ATK and DEF.
Since Fusilier, Malefic Stardust, and Malefic Cyber End are all DARK monsters, Beckmann plays Allure of Darkness for a little added draw power. He’s also got 1 more trick up his sleeve – Eradicator Epidemic Virus! This Virus Trap Card is activated by Tributing a DARK monster with 2500 ATK or more. Then, its controller declares “Spell,” or “Trap.” The Virus then destroys all of the opponent’s Spells or Traps on the field and in their had, and continues to destroy any that they draw until the end of the third turn after the Virus is activated. Eliminating all of his opponent’s Trap Cards will leave them defenseless against Beckmann’s Malefic monsters. On the other hand, key Spell Cards like Dragon Ravine, Necrovalley, or Shien’s Smoke Signal are rendered useless if Beckmann chooses Spells. There’s no limit on the number of Malefics Beckmann can Summon in a single turn, but he can only control 1 at a time on the field. If he draws more Malefics than he needs, Tributing 1 of them to Eradicator Epidemic Virus is a great way to make the most of an uneven draw.
Having played Samurais against this Deck, Brendan Beckmann has the experience needed to turn the tables! This could be a breakout weekend for Malefic strategies.