Hello everyone! I’m back this week and will be discussing Patrick Hoban’s decklist from YCS Dallas. Speaking of YCS Dallas, I was unable to attend due to my flight getting cancelled. Oddly enough, my friend Brandon Wigley sent me his decklist around the Wednesday before YCS Dallas, and it turns out Patrick used the same deck. Unfortunately, Patrick was unable to make the Top 32, losing out on the bubble, but Brandon was able to make Top 32, albeit losing there. They decided to play Lightsworn Shaddoll for this event because it was able to do the most given any situation. For example, the deck had the ability to drop its hand on the table during the midgame and overwhelm the opponent. Also, dropping your hand on the table is not as bad as it sounds because most of the monsters you summon are gigantic floaters. Without further adieu, here is the deck that Patrick Hoban, Brandon Wigley, and myself would have played for YCS Dallas.
- 3 Shaddoll Beast
- 2 Shaddoll Dragon
- 2 Shaddoll Squamata
- 1 Shaddoll Falco
- 1 Shaddoll Hedgehog
- 3 Raiden, Hand of the Lightsworn
- 2 Lyla, Lightsworn Sorceress
- 2 White Dragon Wyverburster
- 2 Black Dragon Collapserpent
- 2 Chaos Sorcerer
- 1 Black Luster Soldier – Envoy of the Beginning
- 3 Upstart Goblin
- 3 Shaddoll Fusion
- 1 Soul Charge
- 1 Super Polymerization
- 1 Allure of Darkness
- 1 Book of Moon
- 1 Charge of the Light Brigade
Extra Deck: 15
- 2 El Shaddoll Construct
- 2 El Shaddoll Winda
- 1 Stardust Spark Dragon
- 1 Thought Ruler Archfiend
- 1 Crimson Blader
- 1 Scrap Dragon
- 1 Arcanite Magician
- 1 Goyo Guardian
- 1 Leo, Keeper of the Sacred Tree
- 1 Castel, the Skyblaster Muskateer
- 1 Abyss Dweller
- 1 Number 106: Giant Hand
- 1 Number 61: Volcasaurus
This is usually the Shaddoll card you want to fuse with every time. It immediately replaces itself without having any other requirements, like Shaddoll Dragon needing a backrow to destroy. Another big reason three Shaddoll Beast is optimal is because of its role in the mirror match. Running out of Shaddoll Beasts to tribute set over your extra deck monsters is the last thing you want to happen. If you are only playing two Shaddoll Beasts, this can happen very quickly. For example, if you Shaddoll Fusion with a Shaddoll Beast and a Light to make El Shaddoll Construct to send Shaddoll Hedgehog and search your Shaddoll Beast to tribute over your extra deck monster, you have already gone through two Shaddoll Beasts. Usually in the Shaddoll mirror match, at one point one player is forced to Shaddoll Fusion and leave their extra deck monster on the field, being very vulnerable to an opposing Shaddoll Fusion. Keep in mind, this would usually happen in the later game, so if you were only using two Shaddoll Beasts, they were most likely used up. If your game got to that point and you are able to Shaddoll Fusion for free, I really hope you have a third Shaddoll Beast left in your deck so you can actually get value off your free Shaddoll Fusion. If you don’t have any good Shaddolls to send from your deck, your free Shaddoll Fusion isn’t netting you as much advantage as it should. The last reason is a fairly obvious one, playing three Shaddoll Beasts gives you a higher chance of milling one for a free card. For example, if you only played two and you drew one of them, you only have one left in your deck to mill, fuse with for free, or search off Sahddoll Hedgehog. All in all, I believe three is the correct number on this card.
2 Shaddoll Dragon
This card at two is a necessary evil in my opinion. Shaddoll Dragon has many merits to play multiples, but it also has reasons it isn’t extremely strong. To start, I think it is pretty clear why people would want to run multiples of this card; it pops backrows and is a good out to Vanity’s Emptiness. Now, the reasons I am not the fondest of this card is because millling it early or when your opponent has no backrows does literally nothing. Also, if you are not getting rid of Vanity’s Emptiness, odds are you are hitting a chainable card, so you’re not getting value off your Shaddoll Dragon, you’re just forcing their trap. Like I said before, this card is a necessary evil at two because of its strength at outing Vanity’s Emptiness. If Vanity’s Emptiness was not a card, I think you could get away with playing one Shaddoll Dragon.
There is not really much to talk about for Shaddoll Squamata. I would like to only play one, but increasing your chances of milling it is very important. Every time you mill Shaddoll Squamata, it equates to a free card for you. Also, when you’re in a situation that you need to mill a specific Shaddoll monster, milling Shaddoll Squamata is equally insane because Shaddoll Squamata is any Shaddoll monster sent to the grave that you want. The reason you do not want to max out on this card is because drawing multiples contributes to the normal summon clogged hands that we all despise. Also, you don’t want to play three because this card just takes up space to act as any other Shaddoll. Shaddoll Squamata also outs Vanity’s Fiend quite well. Overall, two is the perfect number for Shaddoll Squamata in this deck.
1 Shaddoll Falco
Shaddoll Falco is a really good card in my opinion, but it just much too slow. Having to waste your normal summon one turn to set it, then having to manually flip it next turn, then having to wait ANOTHER turn to flip the monster you got off Shaddoll Falco to get full value. This is all assuming your opponent is smart and does not attack your Shaddoll Falco, and you didn’t draw Sinister Shadow Games.This format, you cannot afford to wait three whole turns before getting value for your cards. The card acts as good defense, but it is just too slow to be ran in multiples.
1 Shaddoll Hedgehog
Shaddoll Hedgehog has its ups and its downs for me, but again, it seems to be a necessary evil to run one of him. The play where you are able to Shaddoll Fusion into an extra deck monster and can send Shaddoll Hedgehog to search Shaddoll Beast to tribute set over your extra deck monster to get your Shaddoll Fusion back and turn off your opponents Shaddoll Fusion, is just too important. Milling Shaddoll Hedgehog usually isn’t that great though. Searching your deck for Shaddoll monsters is not as optimal as it sounds because the Shaddoll monsters don’t really do anything in your hand. They act as dead normal summons with mediocre effects. However, they do what they are supposed to do when they are sent to the grave by card effect. Unless you’re not playing cards like Polymerization, you won’t be getting value off your Shaddoll monsters in your hand if you did not draw Shaddoll Fusion. That is also where Shaddoll Hedgehog comes in handy, it can act as a standalone set monster to get you access to your Shaddoll Fusion. Overall, I think you need to include at least one Shaddoll Hedgehog in your deck for the current format.
This card is downright insane. He is huge, he mills during your Main Phase 1, he’s a tuner, AND he’s a Light. To start, having 1700 attack is absolutely ridiculous, forcing the opponent to dive into their Extra Deck to answer him. Once they go into their Extra Deck, they better back it up with a Vanity’s Emptiness and hope you don’t have an out to their Vanity’s Emptiness in addition to your Shaddoll Fusion. Next, Raiden, Hand of the Lightsworn mills in your Main Phase 1, so you can still make plays after you mill. For example, lets say you milled a Light monster with Raiden, hand of the Lightsworn’s effect while also having Black Dragon Collapserpent in addition to Vanity’s Emptiness in your hand. That means you get to end with the incredible lock of Stardust Spark Dragon and Vanity’s Emptiness, all because you got to mill in your Main Phase 1 instead of your End Phase. In this scenario, if Raiden, hand of the Lightsworn was replaced by Lyla, Lightsworn Sorceress, you would be unable to make that play because Lyla, Lightsworn Sorceress mills in the End Phase, and is also not a tuner. Just the fact that Raiden, Hand of the Lightsworn is a big Light monster that mills and forces your opponent into their extra deck is reason enough to play the full three copies.
2 Lyla, Lightsworn Sorceress
Lyla, Lightsworn Sorceress is another Lightsworn that’s played because of her strong effect during Main Phase 1. What she really does best is outing Vanity’s Emptiness. Having a normal summonable out to Vanity’s Emptiness that can potentially net you a free card is exactly what this deck needed. Also, being a Level 4 Light gives synergy to the Shaddoll engine. We did not want to max out on Lyla, Lightsworn Sorceress because drawing multiple Lightsworns in your opening hand is less than idea. With only one Lyla, Lightsworn Sorceress, there aren’t enough outs to Vanity’s Emptiness, and it was harder to open with a Lightsworn every hand. Also, during the later game when milling is not very important, Lyla, Lightsworn Sorceress is better than Raiden, Hand of the Lightsworn because of her ability to pop backrows. Games are won and lost due to Vanity’s Emptiness, let’s try and minimize the games we lose to the most common three of trap in the current format.
these little guys are what pushed the deck over the top. Acting as free Level 8 Synchros with Raiden, Hand of the Lightsworn, free Shaddoll Fusion fodder, and being big floating beatsticks are exactly what I want in a card. We all know why these cards are so good, but why the ratio of 2 and 2? Before, when I played Armageddon Knight (while Soul Charge was at 3), I opted to play 2 White Dragon Wyverburster and 1 Black Dragon Collapserpent due to the difficulty of getting a Light in grave. Now, with the addition of the Lightsworn monsters, you have an abundance of Light monsters, therefore you can afford to play the second copy of Black Dragon Collapserpent. Also, considering you have a chance to mill any amount of your dragons, you want to play an equal amount. For example, let’s say you only played one Black Dragon Collapserpent and you milled it. Now, whenever your White Dragon Wyverburster is sent to the grave, you will not be getting value out of them. To prevent cutting a color off from milling, you want to play two of each dragon because the chances that you will mill both of one color before you use them, or before you mill the other color, are very low. Overall, the two and two ratio has been working perfectly for me so I will continue to run them.
2 Chaos Sorcerer/1 Black Luster Soldier – Envoy of the Beginning
These guys are really good if you’re able to summon them. They remove threats without having to go into the Extra Deck, and force the opponent to go into their Extra Deck to kill it. The problem is drawing too many chaos monsters early without access to a Lightsworn monster. They can just sit dead in your hand which is something we do not want. However, I think the pros outweigh the cons on these cards. They are just too powerful and that is why we run a total of three boss chaos monsters.
3 Upstart Goblin
Obviously I play these because I want to see my good cards more, but playing Upstart Goblin correctly in this deck is something you really have to think about. For example, say you open Raiden, Hand of the Lightsworn, Upstart Goblin, Shaddoll Dragon, Shaddoll Fusion, and Vanity’s Emptiness. Do you just automatically slam Upstart Goblin to see your next card? In my opinion, no, you do not because you only have one Shaddoll in your hand, which shows that there are probably some Shaddoll cards near the top of your deck. It is just something you have to think about whenever you draw a card that mills and Upstart Goblin together.
3 Shaddoll Fusion
This card dictates the way the game is played currently. It is just so powerful, and does everything you want in a deck like Shaddolls. It forces your opponent not to summon their Extra Deck threats, and it fixes your all monster hand openings. The full playset is staple.
1 Soul Charge
I’m pretty sure everyone would still be running three of this card if Konami let us, but they decided to limit it. This card is also extremely unfair and pushes Shaddolls over the top. Being able to Soul Charge back your Lightsworn monsters to get even more value is just unreal. Also, Level 8 synchros are just the best synchros in the game, and with a Soul Charge for four, it is not a daunting task to make two Level 8 synchros for one card.
This card is probably my favorite card in the entire deck. Sometimes Shaddolls have a hard time getting to a starter card or can have a monster clogged hand, and Allure of Darkness usually fixes both of those problems. Being able to see more cards in your deck increases the number of options you have access to, which would in turn give you a higher chance of being able to deal with your current situation.
1 Book of Moon
To be honest, the only reason I played this card was for it to act as a pseudo Vanity’s Emptiness against an opposing Shaddoll Fusion when I had an Extra Deck monster face-up. Other than that, I absolutely hated this card. It was only good when I was able to fight through my opponent’s trap cards and break their board. I sided this card out almost every game, which was a clear indicator to myself that I messed up by playing this card. Overall, I would not play this card again.
1 Super Polymerization
This card is unfair. It acts as an OTK enabler, and a Forbidden Lance at the same time. I’m not going to talk any more about this card, other than the fact that it should be banned.
3 Vanity’s Emptiness
This was the card of last format, and it will be the card of this format. Ever since the realization that floodgates are the best traps in the game, Vanity’s Emptiness popularity absolutely spiked. The card is single handedly able to win you games if it is backed by a strong field. It feels like we are playing Tele-Dad again with Royal Oppression. I am a believer of Konami hitting floodgates on the forbidden/limited list, so I believe this card is not healthy for the game at three.
2 Sinister Shadow Games
This card was decent for me. It is very strong early game by creating blowouts if you were able to summon a Shaddoll Falco to your field, and acts as many different cards. Being able to do so many different things with a single card is a key value that you should be looking for.
Since Soul Charge got limited to one, we wanted to find another card that created unfair gamestates for us. Burst Rebirth did exactly what we wanted to. By Special Summoning a Shaddoll Beast in face-down defense in your opponents End Phase, then flipping it up for usually a +2 is just devastating. Not to mention Shaddoll Beast’s attack is no laughing matter at 2200, usually forcing the opponent into their Extra Deck to answer him. There are also some funky plays you can create with this card. For example, reviving a Lyla, Lightsworn Sorceress, or a Black Luster Soldier – Envoy of the Beginning, or whatever you need to beat your opponent. Burst Rebirth acts as a Call of the Haunted, with the added benefit of being able to trigger your Shaddoll’s flip effects, while having the con of paying 2000 life points.
1 Compulsory Evacuation Device
I loved this card. Being able to draw it to an established board is just so appealing to me. It is a great out to Stardust Spark Dragon, Vanity’s Fiend, and the Shaddoll Fusion monsters. There’s not much to talk about on Compulsory Evacuation Device because it has been around for so long and everyone knows its applications.
I attended ARGCS Columbus Ohio this weekend and decided to take this deck next to card for card for the event, as did Brandon Wigley. The reason we chose to play this deck over Burning Abyss was because we absolutely thrashed Dalton Bousman the night before while he was piloting Burning Abyss. Shaddoll Fusion was just too powerful of a card not to be played, and I agreed. So with that, Brandon and I sleeved up our Shaddoll decks while Dalton and Patrick did their own thing. Sadly, Brandon and I were both knocked out of the tournament very early, but I do not think it was our deck choice. We both just got unlucky throughout the day, and I forgot to bring a key card with me which would later cost me the match.
The journey started off on Thursday night when Dalton decided he wanted to come down and stay the night at my house so we can leave early in the morning. When Dalton arrived, I was not at home, but with my friend and boss Aaron Jarvis. We tried rushing over to my house, but the Chicagoland traffic had other plans for us. After finally getting to my house, Aaron, Dalton and I decided to go to Hotsaucegames for a bit to hang out. After we all become tired, we decide it is time to go home and go to sleep.
Friday morning comes around and Dalton walks into my room at like 7:00 AM and is like get up and I was like um we are sleeping for at least another hour. He was relieved as well and went back to pass out. Once we wake up and shower, we are on the road to the Columbus Airport to pick up Brandon. Once we pick up Brandon, we just head straight for the hotel room to hang out and test a bit. James Frazier, Jordan Winters, and Tony Meier arrive at our hotel around 11:30, but we were all tired so we decided to pass out.
Saturday comes and we wake up, shower, and I go get my white boy Starbucks white chocolate mocha (Aaron I love you). We get over to the convention center and nobody is really nervous, we just are here to play Yugioh.
Game 1: I lose due to being locked out by Vanity’s Emptiness and bricking for four turns straight while he beats me down with a 1900. If I recall correctly, I drew three Shaddoll Fusions and a Chaos Sorcerer in a row.
Game 2: He has Shadow Imprisoning Mirror and a Skill Drain. Awesome right? I go on the aggressive and just beat him down with a Shaddoll Construct.
Game 3: He opens three backrows and a set monster. My hand is absolutely awful again. Thankfully, since he was playing a fair deck, he let us pass back and forth for around five turns. Since I was playing a real deck, once I drew the cards I needed, I pushed through three of his five backrow and ended with Stardust Spark Dragon, Chaos Sorcerer, Black Dragon Collapserpent, a set Shaddoll Falco, and a Vanity’s Emptiness.
Round 2 Shaddolls Won Roll
Game 1: Yet another bad hand, but I end up killing him on turn three thanks to a lucky Raiden, Hand of the Lightsworn mill turning my chaos cards on.
Game 2: I opened Puppet Plant to his Raiden, Hand of the Lightsworn, but I couldn’t kill him so I stole it, attacked, and tributed it to set my Shaddoll Beast. He End Phase Sinister Shadow Games for Shaddoll Squamata and Shaddoll Falco, and I get Caius the Shadow Monarched on his turn which swung the tempo completely in his favor.
Game 3: I let him go first and he just sets a backrow and passes. I Lyla, Lightsworn Sorceress, hit for 1700, break his Vanity’s Emptiness and hit a Shaddoll Beast and a Light monster with my mill. He summons White Dragon Wyverburster to kill my Lyla, Lightsworn Sorceress, and I am able to kill him on my next turn.
Game 1: He opens Satellarknight Deneb with four backrows, I summon Raiden, Hand of the Lightsworn. I Debated playing around Satellarnova Alpha, but realized that just plays into Dimensional Prison. I also had a Shaddoll Fusion in hand, so I didn’t mind if he got his plus with Satellarknight Altair. I used Raiden, Hand of the Lightsworn’s effect to mill a Charge of the Light Brigade and a Lyla, Lightsworn Sorceress. I don’t attack his Satellarknight Deneb, and milled a Shaddoll Dragon in my end phase, only to be hit with a Shadow-Imprisoning Mirror. I was astounded. Needless to say, since I milled two of my outs to that card game 1, I did not find my second Lyla, Lightsworn Sorceress to answer it and I lost.
Game 2: He opened weak with zero backrows and I overwhelm him. I think I killed him on turn 2 or 3.
Game 3: It comes down to a very simplified gamestate where I got him low on life and I know he has Neo Spacian Grand Mole and Satellarknight Altair with Satellarknight Deneb in grave. I have Soul Charge for three, being Shaddoll Beast, Raiden, Hand of the Lightsworn, and Shaddoll Dragon. Unfortunately for me, I was under the impression that I was going to play Burning Abyss for this event, so I didn’t bring my Number 106: Giant Hand with me. I lost because of it. I was unable to summon any monster with built in defense to negate his monsters effect.
Game 1: I destroy him because he doesn’t draw Artifact Sanctum on his first turn to answer my Raiden, Hand of the Lightsworn.
Game 2: I am about to win but he draws to two and drops Black Luster Soldier – Envoy of the Beginning and slams Shaddoll Fusion to beat me.
Game 3: Again, I am going to win on my next turn by answering his Shaddoll Fusion with my Shaddoll Fusion and my chaos monster. He draws to 2, plays his Shaddoll Fusion, Summons Shaddoll Construct only sending a Shaddoll Hedgehog and searching a Shaddoll Squamata in the process. He sets his last unkown card. I draw, and he flips his fresh Vanity’s Emptiness that he drew. I was not happy.
Even though the tournament was not a successful one for me, I still had a ton of fun. It is always the best being able to see your friends that you don’t get to see very often.
Thank you all for reading this gigantic article! I will be in Iowa for the ARGCS this upcoming weekend, so feel free to say hi!