Home > Special > Building Battle Pack 2 – Part 6: Game-Changing Cards, part I

Building Battle Pack 2 – Part 6: Game-Changing Cards, part I

June 25th, 2013

Most of your gameplay in War of the Giants will revolve around the Battle Triad that I described previously.

But today, I’m going to talk about some truly noteworthy cards in the set. Not because they’re overwhelmingly powerful (balance of cards was very important to us when designing the set – in fact I’ll talk about some cards that didn’t make the cut, and why, another time), but because they change the nature of the Duel in a big way.

These cards have an uncanny ability to make the Duel about them. In playtesting, we had a lot of fun when these cards hit the field. Whether you’re playing with them, or against them, they all have one thing in common: they make you THINK. And a Duel with more thinking, and thus more strategy on both sides, is what Battle Pack 2: War of the Giants is all about.



I’ve mentioned the all-powerful Truckroid before. So what makes this little guy such a menace? Simple: every time he destroys a monster, he equips that monster to himself. And he gains ATK equal to ALL of the monsters equipped to him.

BP02-EN055Truckroid typically needs an ATK pump to get his first kill. But that kill will usually put him well over 2000 ATK, making it easy for him to get a second kill. With that second kill, Truckroid will usually be in the mid-to-high-3000’s, maybe as high as 4000, and be virtually unstoppable.

What this means for you, if your opponent is using Truckroid, is that the moment Truckroid hits the field, he becomes your #1 target to eliminate. You MUST get rid of Truckroid, before he gets big, or else you’re probably doomed.

The best way to take out Truckroid is to turn a battle around when Truckroid attacks. Truckroid has to attack if he’s going to be worthwhile to your opponent, so you’ll have an opportunity to use a battle outcome changer. At a minimum, you need to stop the attack. If you’re really lucky, you’ll be able to destroy Truckroid in that battle. There’s two complications to that, though. First, Truckroid will almost certainly have his own ATK pump backing him up, so your ATK pump(s) will have to be superior (this might be a good time to unload everything you have Set). Second, you can only destroy Truckroid if your own monster is in Attack Position. This is a serious drawback to leaving monsters on the field in Defense – they become prime targets for pumping up the opponent’s Truckroid.

Another problem with overcoming Truckroid is his 2000 DEF. Even if you use a battle position changer to get him into defense, that’s still a fairly high number to overcome. Book of Moon and Swords of Concealing Light are very effective weapons against Truckroid, since flipping him face-down destroys all the monsters equipped to him, but even these cards leave him with his 2000 DEF coming to bear.

Of course, if you DO attack Truckroid, and lose the fight because of the opponent’s own battle outcome changers, then you’ve just made Truckroid even stronger. There goes the caveat that Truckroid has to succeed in his first attack to get stronger – you just handed Truckroid victory on a silver platter.

War of the Giants is the perfect environment for Truckroid to thrive in. Very little card removal, a plethora of monsters with middling ATK, a ton of ATK pumps floating around that he can use, and a strong DEF rating even when things go against him, all make Truckroid one of the most fearsome monsters in the set.

As you’ll see if you ever encounter him, Truckroid quickly turns a Duel into Truckroid: The Trading Card Game.


Injection Fairy Lily & Pyrotech Mech – Shiryu

These seemingly unconnected cards deliver a similar impact on the game: they burn Life Points at a phenomenal rate. Maybe you, maybe your opponent, maybe both. Somebody’s goin’ down.

BP02-EN018Injection Fairy Lily is one of the most effective counter-measures there is to humongous Tribute Monsters (or Truckroid…). But her incredible power comes at a very high price: 2000 Life Points per application.

If you get Lily into play, there’s a big temptation to rule the field with her. Why not – she’s invincible, right? Attack! Attack again! Watch the opponent’s monsters fall like dominoes!

The problem with this is that before you know it, you’ve burned through most of your Life Points. Three attacks like this leaves Lily in Attack Position, with a very vulnerable 400 ATK, and you won’t have enough Life Points to win another fight with her. So on offense, Lily’s good for 2 hits at most. Still, this is great for a surgical strike to take out an enemy Tribute Monster. But repeated attacks to clear the field and win the Duel seldom work.

Pyrotech Mech – Shiryu is very easy to Tribute Summon, since you can get him out with just 1 Tribute. If you start the game with Shiryu in your hand, you can Tribute Summon him on the second turn, as long as your first turn Summon survives. You can also get him out easily on the first turn of the Duel, by Tributing a monster you Special Summon (like Gilasaurus, Oracle of the Sun, Solar Wind Jammer, etc.). With 2900 ATK and the ability to do piercing battle damage, a first- or second-turn Shiryu can decimate your opponent’s field (and Life Points) before they can get their game rolling.

The risk with Shiryu is that if you can’t steamroll your opponent, you’ll take 1000 damage during EACH End Phase! For each of Shiryu’s attacks, you’ll take 1000 damage in your End Phase, then 1000 more damage in your opponent’s End Phase. This means that for every 2900 ATK you dish out, you take 2000 damage yourself. The counter-strategy to Shiryu is for your opponent to play high-stat monsters in the appropriate positions, to eat up his attack strength. If they summon a 1500 ATK monster, even if Shiryu destroys it, you only do 1400 damage to your opponent’s Life Points, while Shiryu’s effect does 2000 to you. You’re taking more damage from Shiryu than your opponent!

BP02-EN122In order to make Shiryu really work, you need to summon more monsters to back it up. Have Shiryu clear the way, then make direct attacks with your other monsters. You can also negate your own Shiryu’s effects with cards like Axe of Fools or Forbidden Chalice, thereby saving your Life Points.


Regardless of which of these monsters is used, the Duel is likely to end VERY fast, whatever the outcome is. You’ll also need to pay special attention to your Life Points. Life Points matter more in Battle Pack Duels than in most games, but if either of these cards is in your arsenal, your Life Points will really matter. A lot.





This little guy just won’t die!

BP02-EN068Every time he gets attacked, you can pay 800 Life Points to negate the attack. Not only does your Krebons stay on the field, but you’ll probably lose fewer Life Points than  you would have from the attack itself.

Krebons is a guaranteed way to keep  a monster on the field so that you can Tribute Summon. But it’s also an incredible defense. If things are going against you, you might just want to leave Krebons on the field by himself for a couple turns, with no other monsters, and burn some Life Points to regain your footing and draw some more cards.

Krebons can be frustrating to play against. But the controller of Krebons will run out of Life Points eventually. Don’t over commit. Realize that if your opponent is burning points for Krebons, there’s a danger that he’s setting up a counter-attack. Be prepared and plan accordingly – there’s probably a Tribute Monster incoming.

(Or they could just be desperate. Maybe it’s time to push for a win?)



Amazingly cool card in sealed play!

BP02-EN123Aye-Iron starts at 1600 ATK, but goes up by 400 every turn if you don’t attack with him. Every turn, you’ll have a very interesting choice: attack, or get bigger?

Each time I played with Aye-Iron, I usually went for “get bigger,” until he was at 3200 ATK, at which point I let the stompage begin.

The trick with Aye-Iron is that you’re going to be constantly tempted by the prospect of killing monsters on your opponent’s side of the field. Gee, that monster they have is REALLY annoying (or threatening!) and it sure would be nice to get rid of it…


Oh, but then he can’t gain 400 ATK this turn. Hrm… decisions, decisions…

If you’re facing Aye-Iron, obviously you want to take him out as fast as possible. If you have good defense battle outcome changers, play a monster just big enough that your opponent’s other monsters can’t destroy it, but Aye-Iron can. He’ll be tempted to commit Aye-Iron to the fight, and you can spring the trap.


Spikeshield with Chain

Many cards were cut from this set during playtesting, because they were too powerful or just caused games to not be fun. There was debate about every one of those cards, and debate about many cards that wound up making it into the set, because the final verdict was that they made a good fit.

BP02-EN214And then there’s Spikeshield with Chain. When you’re keeping some cards in and cutting others out, there’s always going to be one card that’s right on the cusp. The very last card that might have been cut from the set. The next one on the chopping block, as it were.

If – and that’s debatable – there is one card in the set that is too powerful, this is it, right here.

Ultimately, Spikeshield with Chain was included for a few reasons. First, while powerful, it’s not actually going to win you many games, because it’s not an offensive card (mostly…). Second, there are numerous ways for the opponent to deal with it. And third, because the amount of extra strategy and thinking required by both players when it DID show up was something that added value to our Duels.

So, why play with Spikeshield with Chain? First of all, it’s another 500 ATK attack pumper. And it’s a Trap Card, so you can surprise the opponent with it. It’s similar to Kunai with Chain in this regard, or think of it as a permanent (but slightly weaker) version of Rush Recklessly.

Second, it’s the ultimate defense. As long as your monster sits in Defense Position, his DEF will probably be so high that the opponent is going to have to use some serious strategy to defeat it. Of course, a Defense Position monster isn’t exactly going to win you the game. You’re going to have to pump out some offense, either some Attack Position monsters, or other monsters to Tribute. And if your opponent has the stronger field, those monsters WON’T be helped by Spikeshield with Chain, and your opponent WILL pick them off one by one, so your counter-attack isn’t going to go anywhere. Of course, equipping a monster with this card makes it a guaranteed-to-live Tribute fodder on the field, so you could always Tribute it. But then your Spikeshield with Chain goes away…

Third, there’s actually one scenario where this card CAN win you games, but your opponent has to be low on Life Points to do it. If your opponent attacks your Defense Position monster, and you activate this card in the Damage Step, your opponent’s monster will probably bounce off your equipped monster, and your opponent will take a TON of damage to their Life Points. When a Duel is coming down to the wire, this can be a quick way to finish off an overconfident enemy.

Putting on the opponent’s shoes, how do you deal with Spikeshield with Chain? Several ways:
*You could use one of your removal cards, either on the equipped monster or the Equip Card.
*You can use a monster that destroys monsters in Defense Position, like Drillroid.
*You can Summon a 2-Tribute, high-ATK monster (should have plenty of time, if your opponent is just turtling), and throw in some ATK pumps or Equip Cards to get your ATK high enough to run over the defending monster.
*You can change the equipped monster to Attack Position, where it’s much weaker.
*You can ignore it. Your opponent’s going to have to play some other monsters in order to win; go after them, instead. Especially if you can do some piercing damage through those weaker monsters.


These are just a few of the cards that can totally change the face of a Duel. I’ll talk about even more such cards next time!

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