Monday, June 25, 2012

[Japanese Meta] Analysing Top Decks from 2012 Regionals

About two weeks ago, Bushiroad released the top 4 decks from every district that participated in the 2012  Regional Championships. There were three districts, Nagoya, Hiroshima and Kanazawa. Each regional is also split into two classes, Senior class and Junior class. I will be looking at the bigger picture in terms of what decks were clearly successful and hopefuls that didn't seem to make it. I will only go into detail about the six decks that topped (three in Senior class and three in Junior class), so here we go.

Deck Breakdown
Nagoya District Senior Class:
Winner: Gold Paladin (2 Ezel, 2 Gigantech Destroyer, 4 Garmore)
Runner-up: Dragonic Overlord the End

Hiroshima District Senior Class:
Winner: Gold Paladin (4 Ezel, 2 Manawydan)
Runner-up: Majesty Lord Blaster (1 Pendragon, 1 Soul Savior Dragon)

Kanazawa District Senior Class:
Winner: Majesty Lord Blaster
Runner-up: Dragonic Overlord the End

Nagoya District Junior Class:
Winner: Spike Brothers (Dudley Emperor)
Runner-up: Dragonic Overlord the End

Hiroshima District Junior Class:
Winner: Dragonic Overlord the End
Runner-up: Neo Nectar (LOLWUT?)

Kanazawa District Junior Class:
Winner: Dragonic Overlord the End
Runner-up: Gold Paladin (3 Ezel, 4 Garmore, 1 Sagramroe)

Total tops:
Dragonic Overlord the End: 5
Gold Paladin: 3
Majesty Lord Blaster: 2
Spike Brothers: 1
Neo Nectar: 1

Familiar Faces & The New Kids on the Block
Even with the release of Booster Set 6 and new clans and cards, familiar faces still appeared on the podium. There was no shortage of Dragonic Overlord the End tops and Majesty Lord Blaster showed it's face here and there, showing that the older decks could still compete with the new kids on the block. Not a lot has changed in terms of card choices for these decks either, with the exception of a Pendragon in one of the Majesty Lord Blaster decks, showing that they're still a couple of solid, true and tested decks that worked a few months ago, and still work today.

There was one new deck however that topped a fair amount of times - Gold Paladin. With powerful abilities and Limit Break effects that push for large numbers, it seems that it was too much to handle for others. As I expected, the dominating build was Ezel/Garmore oriented, supporting my earlier prediction that Spectral Duke Dragon would have a hard time seeing the light of top competitive play. It's dependence on it's ride chain and consequential lack of consistency seemed to have been it's downfall, and was pushed aside for the more consistent and harder hitting Ezel/Garmore builds. This can lead one to believe that with a lack of Majesty Lord Blaster and Dragonic Overlord the End in the English meta, Gold Paladins may run rampant in the future Continental Qualifiers, along with perhaps Spike Brothers, Pale Moon (post Set 7), Royal Paladin, Great Nature and Kagero managing to keep up.

Surprise Appearances
A couple of surprising decks topped as well, namely Spike Brothers and Neo Nectar. With Extra Booster 3, Spike Brothers have received a huge boost in terms of consistency and competitiveness. This boost was clear in the Nagoya District's Junior class, where a Spike Brother deck topped. Some of the card choices baffled me at first. It ran no Douglas, and ran Field Driller instead. It didn't make sense to me until I realized that in order to make up for the slow mid game, Spikes had to go aggro in the early game. That's why cards such as Zachary and Field Driller were used. Field Driller although it may have low power, thanks to Mecha Trainer it's easy to get good boosters for it to hit good numbers, especially against Grade 1 and Grade 2 opposing Vanguards. These cards force your opponent to either guard, or you gain an advantage, either drawing straight up with Field Driller, or drawing and freeing up a spot in front with Zachary's tagging out effect. It seems the Japanese know what they're doing.

Failed Hopefuls
Even with Gold Paladins taking the podium in many districts, it seems that they're the only deck representing Booster Set 6 and simply "Limit Break clans" in general. There were no Narukami decks anywhere, once again supporting my statement of them being "a flop" and that Dragonic Kaiser Vermillion is not nearly as good as many people, including myself made it out to be when it was first released. Another noticeable absence was that of Angel Feather - they were nowhere to be seen. To be fair though, they were never expected to be that competitive, mostly a fun deck to play on the side perhaps. Spectral Duke Dragon was also a no-show, as I stated above and so was Tsukuyomi, in my opinion due to Tsukuyomi players dropping the deck for something newer, such as Gold Paladin. Another surprise was the lack of Shadow Paladins  anywhere. Even though they were never tier 0, one would assume that a 13k Vanguard along with cards that create pure advantage would allow them to top here or there among the Paladins and Dragons. All in all a lot of decks disappointed, overshadowed by Gold Paladin's  and Dragonic Overlord the End's success.

While old faces still won their share, Gold Paladins were the new force to be reckoned with. There were also some surprises with Spike Brothers and Neo Nectar topping once each. It appears that the Japanese meta rather than being recreated was simply supplemented, with the addition of Gold Paladins. The surprise tops simply prove that in Cardfight!! Vanguard, anything has a chance of topping. I am genuinely excited to see what the English meta shapes into once the Continental Qualifiers roll around.


Don't forget to check out KS Games for all your Cardfight!! Vanguard needs!


  1. I'm still hoping for a spot for Spectral Duke sometime in the future. Till then,I'm going to be playing around with it till it gets some recognition. I'm thinking about adding in Little Giant Tron to get a +10k Booster in order to counteract the relatively weak Units in my Superior Call-heavy build.

  2. I wasn't surprised with Spike Brothers, but Neo Nectar? How in the world did that get up into the ranks? That is one prediction I failed at.