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ABYR Preview: The Empress’ Library

November 1st, 2012

Abyss Rising is packed with new Prophecy cards, including a new Xyz Monster that’ll blow you away – along with your opponent’s monsters!  Check out Empress of Prophecy


The Empress demands that you offer up Spellcaster-Type monsters for her Xyz Materials, and she hits the field with a minimum of 2600 ATK – more if you already control another Xyz Monster with Xyz Materials.

The Empress’s second ability can destroy up to five monsters if you’re lucky, and she doesn’t care if those monsters are big or small; if they’re Xyz Monsters or Synchros; or even if they’re face-up or not.  She’s a devastating powerhouse that bashes the biggest beatsticks, clearing the way for direct attacks.  But with all that destructive power it’s easy to miss that Empress of Prophecy isn’t just about blowing stuff up: the last bit of her ability lets you stack your Deck, rigging your next five draws so that you get what you need.

That’s important, because if you play the Empress’ effect properly you’ll set up a killer combo with one of the new World Premiere cards debuting in Abyss Rising: Spellbook Library of the Heliosphere!


If one of the top two cards of your Deck is a “Spellbook” Spell, you can get it with Spellbook Library of the Heliosphere and load your Graveyard with a Spellbook.  If both cards are Spellbooks, you’ll load your Graveyard and then get two Spellbooks for one.

While cards like Plaguespreader Zombie can stack one Spellbook to the top of your deck, the best way to play this card is to combo it with Empress: blow away a few of your opponent’s monsters; stack the top of your Deck with two Spellbooks; and then use Library to grab both of them.  You’re opponent’s going to need some serious luck to make a comeback after you devastate their monsters and score a bunch of free cards.

So how do you make it happen?  What cards make the best Xyz Materials to Xyz Summon the Empress?


Clever Duelists can count on a wealth of arcane tricks to Xyz Summon the Empress.  Spellbook of Life has a Level-changing effect that could let you bring back a Level 2 or Level 3 Spellcaster at Level 5 instead, depending on what monster you banish from your Graveyard.  Abyss Rising also brings us Hermit of Prophecy, a Level 3 Spellcaster that gains 2 Levels and 300 ATK whenever you activate a “Spellbook” Spell.  Just Summon the Hermit, activate Spellbook of Secrets to get another Spellbook from your Deck, and the Hermit becomes a Level 5 for your Xyz Summon.

For your second Xyz Material, one option is Strength of Prophecy from Return of the Duelist. It’s effect will increase it’s own Level to 5 and return your Spellbook of Secrets to the Deck to be used again. You could also use Spellbook of Secrets to get Spellbook of Life; then Summon the Hermit; then use that Spellbook to Special Summon your second Xyz Material at Level 5 and bump Hermit to Level 5 at the same time.

How do you get to Hermit of Prophecy in the first place?  Stoic of Prophecy is a new Spellcaster that can add a Level 3 “Prophecy” monster from your Deck to your hand whenever Stoic is sent to the Graveyard.  You can even send it straight from the Deck with something like Foolish Burial or use it as an Xyz Material and then detach it.  But you can also use our second World Premiere card, Spellbook Star Hall!


Spellbook Star Hall has two effects: each time a “Spellbook” Spell is activated, it gets a Spell Counter.  All of your Spellcasters gain 100 ATK for each Spell Counter on the Star Hall.  Boosting your Spellcasters can help you overcome troublesome monsters like Thunder King Rai-Oh, which can keep you from using your important search effects.

But it’s the second effect that makes Spellbook Star Hall so good: when it’s destroyed and sent to the Graveyard, you can add a Spellcaster from your Deck to your hand.  You can choose any Spellcaster you want, as long as its Level is less than or equal to the number of Spell Counters that were on Star Hall. One Spell Counter gets you Stoic of Prophecy or Effect Veiler. Just two Spell Counters will get you a free Spellbook Magician of Prophecy, Apprentice Magician, or any of his friends, while three will get you all sorts of stuff, including Hermit or Temperance of Prophecy.

When Return of the Duelist first arrived, most Prophecy Duelists chose to focus on High Priestess of Prophecy as the center of their strategy.  Now you can build around Empress of Prophecy instead (or in addition to!), unleashing combos that can demolish your opponent in a single turn!