Hi fellow Duelists. My name is Aaron Furman and I’m going to talk about the new Lightsworn cards and the different card choices you can play. With North American World Championship Qualifier quickly approaching we see many different deck choices that are very competitive in the current format. Some of the deck choices consist of Sylvan, Geargia, Dragons, Evilswarm, Spellbook, Madolche, Hand/Artifacts/Traptrix, and the newest of the decks; Lightsworn Rulers. With the new Realm of Light structure deck that was released before ARG Circuit Serious Philadelphia, it made Lightsworn much more competitive with the incorporation of the Dragon Rulers. The main purpose of the deck is to send Lightsworn and other cards like Eclipse Wyverns and Dragon Rulers to set up your graveyard for a full blown attack on your opponents life points with strong monster.
Some of the new cards that came out in the structure deck Realm of Light that have made the deck much more powerful and in my opinion much more consistent are Raiden, Hand of the Lightsworn, Minerva, Lightsworn Maiden, and the newest Synchro Michael, the Arch-Lightsworn.
Raiden, Hand of the Lightsworn is a new level 4 Light Warrior Tuner that has just recently been released. This card made a huge impact for consistency levels in the Lightsworn deck. Unlike most of the other Lightsworn monsters that have been released in the past he can use his effect during the main phase to mill two cards. This can help with making card like Soul Charge, Judgment Dragon, or Lightray Daibolos live or even just speed up your milling process.
Another Lightsworn Tuner that came out with the structure deck is Minerva, Lightsworn Maiden. She is a level three Light Spellcaster Tuner. Not many Lightsworn players like to play her in their deck. Personally, I think she is a great new addition to the Lightsworn family and should be played. Besides from just being another Lightsworn Tuner, her effect is fairly good as well. The normal summon effect that adds a Light Dragon-type monster from your deck to your hand equal to the number of Lightsworn monsters with different names isn’t as relevant as her other effect. When she is sent from the deck or hand to the graveyard you send the top card of you deck to the graveyard. So if Minerva is discarded for Solar Recharge or for Lumina’s effect you will be able to mill an additional card, or even when she is sent from the deck to the grave she is able to send an additional card from the deck to the grave. This effect can help speed up the milling process and even if she is in grave she is another name for Judgment Dragon and you can always Soul Charge her back and use her to Synchro into Michael, the Arch-Lightsworn.
Michael is a very powerful new Synchro that came out with the new Lightsworn tuners Raiden and Minerva. He is a level 7 Synchro monster that requires one Tuner and one or more non-Tuner Light monster, which isn’t hard to make with Soul Charge being around and Lumina’s effect to bring back Raiden. Michael’s effect is:Once per turn: You can pay 1000 life points, then target one card on the field; Banish that target. When this card is destroyed: You can target any number of other “Lightsworn” monsters in your Graveyard; Shuffle them into the Deck, and if you do, you gain 300 Life Points for each returned card. During each of your End Phases: Send the top 3 cards of your Deck to the Graveyard.
Michael’s first effect is a useful one that can be used to remove backrow cards or even cards like Wind-Up Zenmaines or Mecha Phantom Beast Dracossack. The second effect is a little less relevant but still useful. Being able to gain more life points late game and an out to not decking yourself out can come in handy when its not looking in your favor. His third effect is just like most of the other Lightsworn monster’s effects, and it is just to send more cards to the graveyard. He is also a level 7, Dragon-type monster. This means he is even more then just his effect: he can be used for an Xyz summon with the use of the Dragon Rulers which are level 7 as well, or he can be used as a name for Judgment Dragon and a banish outlet for the Dragon Rulers. He is one of the most useful cards to have come out in the new structure deck.
Now with all these new cards for the Lightsworn deck there are many different ways to play the Lightsworn deck and many different card choices that it can play.
I’ll start off with Kuribandit, he is one of the most obvious choices for the Lightsworn deck because of his effect to excavate five and chose a spell or trap card from the five and add it to your hand and send the rest to the grave. He seems like the perfect candidate for Lightsworns, but what about Magical Merchant. Potentially Kuribandit could his all monster and not have gotten you any spell or trap cards, but once Magical Merchant’s effect activates and resolves you are guaranteed to see a spell or trap and could mill some monsters on the way getting there. The downsides to Magical Merchant is that it has to be set first before the effect can be used and that you could just end up hitting no monsters if the first card you see is a spell or trap.
In the Lightsworn deck, spell cards are very important and are some of the most powerful cards in the deck. So being able to have Magical Merchant’s effect guarantee hitting a spell card is very important to the set up of your deck. Merchant is also a light monster so it is another Light-attribute monster with a different name for Lightray Diabolos, which can make having it in the graveyard no totally useless.
Other cards that you could chose from to make your Lightsworn deck a little more defensive. You have the option of either running Necro Gardna or Rainbow Kuriboh. They are both very good defenders for when you are in a bad situation. In the past when Lightsworn was very popular they would run three Necro Gardna to keep monsters like Lumina or Judgment Dragon safe from attacks. They were also used to protect you from direct attacks, but now that Rainbow Kuriboh is out could it be a better choice?
Necro Gardna is useful for a discard outlet for Lumina or even for the use of banishing it for tech cards like Allure of Darkness or Black Luster Soldier – Envoy of the Beginning as well as stopping attacks. Rainbow Kuriboh can be used from the hand or your graveyard. So drawing it isn’t bad and milling is isn’t bad either. Rainbow Kuriboh is also a Light monster, which is another light attribute monster with a different name for Lightray Daibolos. The biggest difference between the two would have to be that you are able to use Rainbow Kuriboh more then once. You can use it while its in your hand so if an opposing player attacks you, you can use Rainbow Kuriboh from you hand to stop the attack and equip it to their monster. Once their monster leaves the field, Rainbow Kuriboh goes to graveyard where its second effect can be used. When your opponent attacks directly you can special summon him from the graveyard and if he’s removed from the field banish him. Being able to use him twice I feel gives him the edge over Necro Gardna.
Other monster tech choices you can play in your Lightsworn Ruler deck are Gorz the Emissary of Darkness, Black Luster Soldier-Envoy of the Beginning, and Effect Veiler.
Gorz is a card that many players do not see coming. It is a very powerful card that can change the swing of things in a game state. He is an instant plus one when his effect resolves and is a level 7 so it works well with your Dragon Rulers if you want to Xyz summon. Gorz has been around for a long time and has been seeing less and less game play. He is one of my favorite hand traps and should always be considered when running a deck with not too many backrow.
Black Luster Soldier – Envoy of the Beginning is another card that most players don’t see coming as well as being another boss monster in your deck. He isn’t that hard to summon either if you’re running Kuribandit and Necro Gardna. Black Luster Soldier can win you the game by being able to attack twice and with Honest he is a huge threat to your opponent.
A card that as gone in and out of seeing play is Effect Veiler. This card can be very useful especially in the current format when Sylvan and Lightsworn monster effects are crucial to most of the follow up plays their deck needs. Effect Veiler can stop Lightsworn monsters from milling which is very important in the mirror that you are ahead of your opponent. Against Sylvan it can stop their Lonfire Blossom from using its effect or stop a Sylvan Hermitree from using its effect when you know the top card of their deck is Sylvan Princessprout which can prevent a Felgrand play.
Other uses for Effect Veiler are that it is a light monster so it works with Lightray Diabolos and the card is a level one tuner. For the amount of level sevens you play you can always Soul Charge it back or even normal summon it to Synchro in to a strong level eight Synchro like Scrap Dragon or Stardust Dragon.
Spell card choices for the Lightsworn Ruler deck are the obvious ones three Solar Recharge and Charge of the Light Brigade. Some players are cutting Soul Charge down to two in the Lightsworn Deck. I think that’s a mistake, Soul Charge is one of the most power cards in the game right now and in a deck that is suppose to mill cards while running many monster it should be a staple three of in the main deck. Some other spell cards that’s people chose to play are Reinforcement of the Army, Allure of Darkness, Mind Control and Forbidden Lance. These cards depend on how you would want to build your Lightsworn deck.
Reinforcement of the Army I feel is a must-run in the deck. Being able to get a Raiden to your hand is important. The normal summon of Raiden is one of the best first turn plays besides Kuribandit or Magical Merchant. Playing Reinforcement of the Army and searching out Raiden and playing him also lets you get five cards deep into your deck which is just as many as Kuribandit.
Allure of Darkness depends on what build of Lightsworn Ruler you play. I would only suggest it if you are running dark monsters like Kuribandit, and Necro Gardna not Rainbow Kuriboh or Magical Merchant. Mind Control should definitely be ran because of the amount of tuners you run in the deck you have Minerva and Raiden to Synchro with and it lets you get rid of an opponent’s monster as well. Forbidden Lance is another interesting choice that I like. It’s a card that lets you protect your boss monsters like Judgment Dragon, Lightray Diabolos, Black Luster Soldier, and any of your Synchros or dragon rulers. Forbidden Lance can also be an out to stronger monster that your opponent may have on the field.
Trap card choices can consist of many options like Needlebug Nest, Royal Decree, and Phoenix Wing Wind Blast. Needlebug Nest has become very popular within Lightsworn Ruler decks. It is able to see five cards deep in your deck which helps you set up your graveyard so you are able to make big pushes the turn after. I don’t really like this card, it is a -1 and you have to wait until your opponents turn or your next turn to make a play. It could be a very good card if you mill the right cards, but I don’t believe this risk of going minus one to try to go plus later it worth it. Royal Decree is a great main deck choice for Lightsworn Rulers. When Royal Decree usually gets flipped on a heavy backrow deck like Geargia it can be quite devastating and can win you the game if they cant get rid of it. On the other hand Royal Decree isn’t that good against the mirror match or Sylvans. It usually gets sided out instantly when you play against those match ups, but I think running a card that can win you a game against one match up is worth running even though it could be dead against other match ups.
Phoenix Wing Wind Blast is a card I have always liked and I think it is a good choice for your trap line up. Its usually never dead and there are some points in the game when you want to get rid of a card in your hand like Necro Gardna, Rainbow Kuriboh, Eclipse Wyvern, or even a Dragon Ruler. Phoenix Wing Wind Blast can help you get rid of card out of your hand that you don’t want and be used to put them back a turn by drawing a card that was on the field or get ride of a backrow that could be a game changer, which in the end could be devastating for the opposing player.
When making your extra deck for Lightsworn Ruler there are some clear-cut choices that everyone plays in their deck. For example: Mecha Phantom Beast Dracossack, Number 11: Big Eye, Lavalval Chain, Evilswarm Exciton Knight, Scrap Dragon, Michael, the Arch-Lightsworn, and Black Rose Dragon. Some cards that people play in their extra deck that aren’t so common are Number 101: Silent Honor Ark, Diamond Dire Wolf, Ghostrick Alucard, and Colossal Fighter. These few have seen play in some Lightsworn Ruler decks, but not all and is mostly because of player preference. Now some cards that people don’t really run that they should be are Crimson Blader, Divine Dragon Knight Felgrand, and Number 80: Rhapsody in Berserk.
Crimson Blader’s unique effect can be essential in games against the mirror match or against decks like Sylvans and Mythic-Dragons. When Crimson Blader’s effect resolve it usually stops their opponent from making any plays the next turn because of not being able to summon any monster that is level 5 or higher. Potentially it should let you be able to have another turn without your opponent dropping boss monsters or other high-ranked Xyzs.
Divine Dragon Knight Felgrand isn’t a card that is seen in most Lightsworn Ruler’s extra deck. Making him isn’t as easy as it is for Sylvan or Mythic-Dragons, but is possible. The ways you can make him are with your Judgment Dragons or you Synchro into a level 8 monster and overlay with it to make Felgrand. Felgrand is a very powerful and game-defining card. His effect makes him one of the best Xyz monsters in the game being able negate monster effects or protecting him or other monster from monster, spell, or trap card effects. He would be one of my number one contenders when building my Lightsworn Ruler extra deck.
Number 80: Rhapsody in Berserk is a somewhat new rank four Xyz that has come in the newest booster set Primal Origins. He has seen great play within the past major events in the Geargia extra deck because his ability that no other Xyz monster can do. It can remove up to two monsters from an opponent’s graveyard which could be game changing when played correctly. The Lightsworn Ruler deck can’t make this Xyz as often as Geargia can, but it can be made. This card is mostly for the harder match ups like the mirror or Sylvans. Where it may be important to banish some Lightsworn names in the mirror so Judgment Dragon can’t be played against you or banish some Sylvan monsters like Hermitree and Sagequoia so their Soul Charge is not going to be devastating and allowing them to Xyz into high rank monsters like Felgrand or Dracossack. He can also be equipped to an Xyz to boosts its attack by 1200. This effect isn’t as relevant as the first one because the deck doesn’t try to go out of its way to make more then one Xyz monster during their turn.
With many different ways to run Lightsworn Ruler and WCQ coming up soon, which card choices could be the best to get you into top cut? What tech cards do you like or do you think I have missed any cards that are worth looking at? Thank you for reading and Let me know what you think in the comments below!