Hello there, my name is Dominic Couch and I’m here to tell you about my Yu-Gi-Oh! Nationals Dragon Duel experience. At nationals, I was playing Mermails with the mindset of abusing consistency and having numerous outs, in addition to the ability of minusing my opponent. I also thought it was overlooked as a factor in the event because people were focused on Geargia and H.A.T which were the major factors in this event. To kick off the tournament report let’s look at my decklist I ran and played for a long time before nationals.
- 1x Atlantean Dragoons
- 3x Atlantean Marksman
- 2x Atlantean Heavy Infantry
- 1x Mermail Abyssleed
- 2x Mermail Abyssmegalo
- 3x Mermail Abyssteus
- 1x Tidal, Dragon Ruler of Waterfalls
- 3x Mermail Abysspike
- 1x Mermail Abyssturge
- 1x Aqua Spirit
- 1x Mermail Abyssgunde
- 1x Mermail Abysshilde
- 1x Mermail Abyssocea
- 3x Mermail Abysslinde
- 1x Genex Undine
- 1x Genex Controller
- 1x Leo, the Keeper of the Sacred Tree
- 1x Ally of Justice Decisive Armor
- 1x Black Rose Dragon
- 1x Mecha Phantom Beast Dracossack
- 1x Number 11: Big Eye
- 1x Mermail Abyssgaios
- 1x Evilswarm Exciton Knight
- 1x Number 101: Silent Honor Ark
- 1x Lavalval Chain
- 1x Abyss Dweller
- 1x Gagaga Cowboy
- 1x Bahamut Shark
- 1x Mermail Abysstrite
- 1x Number 17: Leviathan Dragon
- 1x Ghostrick Alucard
- 2x Maxx “C”
- 2x D.D Crow
- 3x Mystical Space Typhoon
- 2x XYZ Encore
- 2x Black Horn of Heaven
- 2x Debunk
- 2x Light-Imprisoning Mirror
The only thing I would change about the decklist is that I would play Xyz Universe over Xyz Encore. I wanted to run Universe over Encore because Encore lets me clear one Exceed automatically, but it summons the materials back and Universe let me clear two monsters and summon a Gaios or Dracossack, so I felt it was more consistent. I chose to not run the double Trite and Angineer because normally I want to go Alucard and break an established board, but Angineer did not hurt my opponent and if they Breakthroughedon their turn, it was cruddy so I didn’t play it. I played Ally of Justice Decisive Armor to ruin Lightsworn because it is an auto-win against the deck and I can easily summon it with Soul Charge. And I played Decree because Geargia and H.A.T. can’t play an effective game with an established Decree face-up. And I didn’t play Moulinglacia because late-game it was horrible, and while it improved good hands, it made bad hands REALLY bad.
I think that sums up my card choices, let’s get into the tournament report.
Round 1 of Swiss
Mermail vs. Mermail
I go first, and we both open Mermail Teus, Dragoons, then search Gunde and Megalo except I set two, while he sets one. On his end phase, I play Decree. I draw Undine and I summon it, sending Tidal to add Controller. I discard the Marksman and the Pike in hand to summon Mermail Megalo, add Sphere, andI overlay for Big Eye to take his Teus. Isummon my Tidal and he takes all the damage. On his turn, He summons Megalo discards Leed and Gunde adding a Sphere and then summons a Controller from hand and makes a Leo to kill the Teus I took. I draw, summon Controller make my own Leo, then summon Tidal, crash Leo and attack for game.
I sided Maxx “C” and opened it.
He goes first, reveals Mermail Teus drops Dragoons and I chain Maxx “C”. He adds a Megalo and Gunde, reveals Megalo ditching Gunde and another Megalo, thensummons the second Megalo off of the Gunde. I’ve drawn three cards so far. He overlays one Megalo and the Teus for Dracossack. I draw again, and he activates Draco’s effect. I draw again, and then he specials a Tidal from hand. He normals a Controller and synchro for Leo. I start my turn and am exceedingly happy knowing I now have 12 cards in my hand. I make a ton of plays and he just can’t keep up and I end up winning.
Round 2 of Swiss
Mermail vs. Gravekeepers
So he goes first, opens Commandant, searches for a Necrovalley, activates it and sets a monster. He then sets three facedowns. I draw activate Teus,drop a Turge and search Pike, summon Pike dropping Megalo they then chain Imperial Tombs of Necrovalley. I pick it up and read it because I’ve never played against it before. He has a set monster and I call judge, shocking to me that if he reveals that it’s a Gravekeeper, he can activate it. I summon Megalo and attack a set Spy. Off Spy he summons Shaman and after a long long time I just can’t keep up and he takes game 1.
I open really well. I summon Mermail Teus dropping Dragoons search Megalo/Gunde. I activate Megalo, dropping Leed and Gunde, adding a Sphere and summoning Leed. I make a dracossack and setting three after using Dracossack. On his turn he goes Commandant into a Necrovalley. He activates it, I chain Mystical Space Typhoon, so he activates another Commandant gets another Necrovalley. He activates it and I chain another Space Typhoon. He then activates Gravekeeper’s Stele and adds both Commandants . He pitches a Commandant for a third Necrovalley and activates it. He then summons the other Commandant then attacks a token and passes. After I pop his Necrovalley, his monsters become too weak and since can’t activate his Imperial Tombs, I win very quickly.
He sets three and pass. I draw, summon Megalo dropping Gunde and Pike, searching a Sphere. I summon the Pike,and he chains Mind Drain. I activate Pike, drop a Marksman and hit a back row. I search Undine, summon Undine dropping Tidal and add Controller. I attack with all my monsters, then set one and pass. He attempts to activate Commandant but I remind him of his Mind Drain, so he summons Commandant and attacks the Undine. I draw, then summon Controller, and synchro summon for a Black Rose, chaining Sphere for a Linde. Off the Mermail Linde I special summon Leed. I then bring back Tidal after Black Rose’s effect for game
Round 3 Swiss
Mermail vs. Geargia
Early on I attack into Fire Hand, it blows me up. On his turn, he sets Armor. I draw a Breakthrough Skill and make a ton of plays with my Mermail Megalo and Teus. I forget to set Breakthrough and pass. He goes off, and if I set Breakthrough I would’ve won.
I make a ton of crazy plays and don’t allow Armor to be onboard, so I easily win game 2.
Simply put, I go off, he goes off. I Dark Hole and we get locked for a while, and then I just couldn’t keep up with his backrow so he won.
Round 4 Swiss 2-1
Mermail vs Skill Drain Lv8
I go first summon Mermail Megalo ditching Linde/Gunde searching the Sphere and summoning Linde. I set two and pass. On his turn, he sets five and passes, but on his end phase, I decree and he scoops.
He can’t draw his floodgates or draw any key cards whatsoever so I win quickly.
Round 5 Swiss 3-1
Mermail vs. Geargia
He opens well, and sets five an armor. I open okay but I open no Marksmans, so he wins quickly off his backrow.
I open well but I can’t afford to summon Megalo into backrow on my second turn, so I ditch Marksman and Infantry to summon Megalo and I search. He opens by setting four and an Armor. After a certain point of trying to summon, I have game with Pike. He Compulses it and then kills me on his next turn.
Round 6 Swiss
Mermail vs. Bujin
I open well, and when he needs to send Hare to win he sends Centipede. After the game, he said it would bother him all through the rest of Nationals.
I open the Light-Imprisoning Mirror and it’s pretty much a blowout from a first-turn Light Mirror, so I win pretty quickly and I start to feel really good.
Round 7, Last Round of Swiss
Mermail vs. Madolche
My opponent predicted that he was playing the Madolche mirror match, which ultimately had cost him the game.
After a long long time I Black Horn his Tiramisu and then that sweeps up the win finally.
He opens the Anjelly/Hootcake/Messengelato play, and for the rest of the match he makes some really good play. Once again I Black Horn the Tiramisu and then he summons a Zenmaines. I push with a Tidal and a Teus to make Big Eye to take the Zenmaines and then he makes Leviathan Dragon on his next turn instead of his Invoker because he is out of Messengelatos so I take the win.
I then end swiss with a record I am proud of 5-2, making Day 2 in 11th place. I realized I have only been playing for two short years and I finally felt like it all paid off. Last year in Chicago at Nats I got 34th and I was really depressed cause I missed the top cut by two places. So I was happy and I didn’t care if was eliminated in top 32 and then I thought to myself, if I made it this far why can’t I go all the way?
Mermail vs. Bujin
I’m so nervous I feel like I’m quaking in my shoes. I summon Undine, drop Dragoons and add Infantry and Genex Controller and set two. I pass, and he Dualitys into Tenk, Royal Decree and a Centipede. He takes the Tenki and adds Yamato and then activates Foolish Burial for Hare.he summons Yamato. I Bottomless and he chains Hare. At the end phase after setting one backrow, he sends Centipede to the graveyard. I draw and then summon Megalo ditching Infantry and Tidal, adding Sphere and then he flips a Decree. I summon Tidal and another monster for game.
He opens and Dualitys for a Decree, Foolish and a Hirume. He takes the Hirume andsets a monster and passes. So I draw and then summon Pike, discarding Marksman and destroying a Hare and adding a second Marksman. I attack and then set two and pass. He draw, summons Hirume by banishing the Hare. He then chains Arasuda and overlays for Susanowo. I activate Light-Imprisoning Mirror and he attacks my Pike. I flip Forbidden Lance in the damage step on his Susanowo and they both die. On my turn, I summon a Marksman, then summon Aqua Spirit, and then I attack with Marksman to summon my Dragoons then attack with Aqua Spirit then attack with Dragoons then I summon Bahamut in Main Phase 2 and activate it’s effect to summon my Abysstrite and then he scoops because he can’t win.
Mermail vs. Bujin
She Tenkis for a Yamato then activates Kaiser Colosseum and sets three. During her end phase, she adds a Crane and then discards the Hare. I draw, and then summon Megalo by discarding Tidal and a Marksman, blowing up a Dimensional Prison and adding an Abyss-Sphere. I attack and she activates Hare. I unfortunately waste my Book of Moon thinking that Hare wouldn’t be able to protect the Yamato, so I go to my main phase 2. I set three and pass. She sets one and passes, then sends a Hare to grave off of the Yamato. I activate Royal Decree on her end phase. I draw and then attack Yamato. She then activates Crane to destroy my monster. In my main phase 2, I summon Tidal and then pass. She draws and then passes, this time sending Turtle to the grave. I bounce Tidal to my hand and then draw for turn. I discard the Tidal and my Gunde to send Abyssleed to the grave. I summon it with Gunde and then attack. She Hares, and I end my turn. She then does nothing on her turnand passes. I draw and then I attack with my Leed and then summon Pike and discard Infantry blowing up Kaiser and adding Marksman. I banish my Infantry and another monster to summon Tidal and then she scoops when I show Gaios.
She sets five and passes. I draw, summon Marksman and attack and then special summon Dragoons off the Marksman. It gets Bottomlessed, then I set two and pass. She draws and sets and passes. I summon Undine and it gets Warninged, so I attack with the Marksman and pass. She summons Yamato and I chain Bottomless.She Lances and she goes to her end phase. She sends Hare and actually ends her turn. I draw and set a monster and a backrow and pass. She summons Hare and overlays for Susanowo. I chain Light-Imprisoning Mirror. She attacks and goes to end her turn. I activate Abyss-Sphere and summon Leed off the Linde. On my turn, I attack with Leed and pass. She draws and plays Pot of Duality. She sees Hirume, Yamato and Arasuda, and adds Hirume. I draw and flip Linde and attack with the Leed, and then set one backrow and pass. She summons Hirume by banishing Yamato and then she attacks. I Lance in damage step, but in her main phase 2, she flips Bujincarnation, summoning Yamato and Hirume and overlaying for Kagutsuchi. She attempts to mill and then I point out Light-Imprisoning Mirror. I summon Tidal and she scoops.
Mermail vs Lightsworn
I summon Teus by discarding Pike and adding Gunde. I normal a Controller and make Leo and set two. He draws and sets a backrow and a monster. I draw and summon Marksman and then attack into Eclipse Wyvern with Leo. He activates Wyvern and banishes the Judgment Dragon. I then attack with Marksman and he attempts to Breakthrough Skill my Marksman. I chain Lance and then summon the Dragoons to attack again. On his turn, he Recharges twice and mills a Wulf off one of them. He summons a Raiden and attacked over my two Atlanteans and then I did a lot with only Mermails. The turn before he could summon his Judgment Dragons, I reduced his life points to zero with a Cowboy, wrapping up the game quickly.
All I remember is he summons and activates a Judgment Dragon while I have a Dweller and a Linde on the field and an Infantry in hand. I chain Dweller and then I activate Linde to summon Abysspike. I discard Infantry to blow up the J.D. and add a Marksman. Then he drops another J.D. and he passed. I draw and topdeck a Genex Undine. I summon it to drop an Infantry and pop J.D. to attack for game.
Mermail vs. Geargia (Clayton H.)
I open Megalo and summon it, discarding Marksman and a Tidal and then add the Abyss-Sphere. I set two and pass. He sets five and a monster and passes. I draw and summon Marksman and activate Megalo to tribute Marksman and blow up his set monster. He Fiendish Chained but since I tributed Marksman for cost, I managed to still blow up the Armor, putting me in a good position. He topdecks another Armor and generates a lot of card advantage. At a certain point I can’t keep up and he OTKs me.
I reveal Megalo, and my opponent misplaysby chaining Macro instead of playing it preemptively.The judge tells him my monsters still go to grave because I already activated, so he scoops.
I don’t remember the specifics, but I was ultimately unable to maintain card advtange against his Geargias and he quickly takes Game 3.
Top 4 Playing for Alternate 3rd-4th
Mermail vs. Madolche
I was way off of my game because of my previous match and ended up losing Game 1 because of my own frustration.
This was a very simple game. I was able to establish my board quickly and had the Black Horn of Heaven for his XYZ play, quickly sealing this game.
I lost because of a combination of unfortunate circumstances; while I opened with a horrible hand, he drew the absolute stones and stole Game 3. However, this was one of the only times all weekend that my deck had drawn completely horribly.
So I ended at 4th place, while I’m bummed I didn’t make top 2, I’m proud of what I did. I learned a lot about myself and how I can improve my playing, and I really enjoyed seeing the riverfront and exploring Detroit with my family.
Thanks for reading my tournament report! Hopefully I can top again soon and write another one.