Sunday, November 18, 2012

Exculpate the Blaster - First Impressions

Hey guys,
Just in case you weren't aware of it, Royal Paladin are getting a new "boss" Grade 3 as a manga promo sometime in the near future. The card, Exculpate the Blaster, has an interesting effect which comes with interesting restrictions. Let's take a look:

[CONT](Hand):If you do not have a Grade 3 «Royal Paladin» vanguard, you cannot normal ride this card.
[CONT](VC):If you do not have a card named "Blaster Blade" in your soul, this unit cannot attack.
[AUTO]:When this card is placed on (RC), retire it.
[ACT](VC):[Counter Blast (3)] Until end of turn, this unit battles every unit on your opponent's field in one attack.
[AUTO](VC):When this unit attacks, put all cards other than "Blaster Blade" from your soul into your drop zone, and this unit gets [Power]+2000 for each cards placed in the drop zone with this effect until end of that battle.
[AUTO](VC):At the beginning of the close step of the battle that this unit attacked, choose one card named "Blaster Blade" from your soul or drop zone, ride it as [Rest], and put all cards from your soul into your drop zone.

Restrictions. A lot of them. Having to have Blaster Blade in soul is the hardest one to achieve, especially with Barcgal banned. One of the only means of tutoring a Blaster Blade outside of Barcgal is Gancelot, which is a giant waste of a Grade 3 spot when there are so many MUCH better Grade 3's to choose from, however thanks to Majesty Lord Blaster, we have a much better chance of getting it into the soul. Even so, if you have Exculpate in hand and Blaster Blade in soul, you need another Grade 3 in your hand unless you want to be grade stuck the following turn. Having to ride over a Grade 3 with Exculpate and yet with another Grade 3 over Blaster Blade the following turn, means you essentially -2 (two Grade 3 rides your opponent doesn't have to do) in order to play Exculpate. Even with Majesty Lord Blaster, all that does is give you an easier time of getting it into the soul. Chances are due to perfect guards, that you are not going to finish them off. Then what? If you're running Exculpate and MLB in the same deck, that's already 5-6 Grade 3's that will either be either of those cards. One is a 10k vanilla, the other you can't even ride over Blaster Blade. The last 3 Grade 3's will most likely be Palamedes, once again a 10k vanilla. Of course, after Exculpate goes off your opponent may not have enough cards to attack with and you end up winning in a war of attrition, but is that worth losing your 12k Crit 2 Vanguard for? Timing would have to be everything with this card. Majesty Lord Blaster can also do a good job of using up their perfect guards. Once you're sure they don't have any more in their hand, swinging for 30k+ for game will sure feel good.

Now onto Exculpate himself, the effect is obviously very good, clearing your opponent's field in one swift blow. Once again, the net advantage it creates is only +2-+3, but completely wiping your opponent's field is definitely nothing to scoff at. However, if we take a look at the main deck in the meta, Gold Paladin, outside of their Gigantech Destroyer + Sleygal Dagger combo, they don't really require any field set-up to be good. Excupate would greatly counter SDD however, by forcing your opponent to play at least 3 more cards from their hand in order to make SDD's Limit Break even available, but let's not forget that due to Exculpate's last effect, you are stuck with a 9k Vanguard the following turn, making it much easier to hit magic numbers on you.

In the end, Exculpate completely deviates away from the whole playstyle of Royal Paladin. This isn't Kagero, Royal Paladin are supposed to create advantage by calling allies to the field, not wiping my opponent's field. Furthermore, we have now seen in this meta that pure power pushes, due to perfect guards, are not good enough anymore to be efficient game pushers. How many times has a beefed up Ezel won a game? Now ask yourself how many times an SDD player has won a game with it's Limit Break? The numbers are probably not even close, simply due to the fact that SDD doesn't care about perfect guards, and a single high powered column gets stopped so easily unless your opponent is unfortunate enough to not have one of the 4 copies of a perfect guard he runs in his hand in the late game. Once again, good use of Majesty Lord Blaster and timing would have to be perfect in order to use Exculpate most efficiently and make the tradeoff from your 12k Crit 2 Vanguard worth it.

Although the card may force you to run a certain build in order to get over restrictions in an easier fashion, the card is still tricky to rate without any testing. Will the power boost be enough to win the game, or will it's backlash consequences after it's effect goes off end up not being beneficial enough to give up a 12k Crit 2 Vanguard? Only testing and time will tell, but I have high hopes that this is indeed the card that Royal Paladin need.


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


  1. With all those restrictions,it makes you think the 12k static is almost wasted on this guy. That or you may lose a Twin Drive by not attacking.

    1. I guess it might just make a difference when you do attack, but yeah. All I can think of is having 5 in soul, gaining 10k and Toypugal plus this is 31k. The 5 cards would be Wingal Brave if you manage to get him back into the soul, your Grade 1/2/3 rides and Blaster Dark (since Blaster Blade stays in the soul).

  2. It's pretty dumb when it goes off, I've had dominating matches where I have a full field and hand and my opponent evened the score instantly with JUST exculpate. Having to drop 2 10ks just to save 1 rg so I'd have enough to fight back was brutal. And this was a game where my opponent ONLY had exculpate out because of his bad starting hand. Why did I have a full field, you ask? Cuz I was playing Machining yeah.

  3. too many restrictions, not a good card at all

    1. Restrictions without counterplay are just steps to walk up.

  4. This card acually plays very well, I've been testing it out and... lets just say i haven't been beaten yet.