Friday, 13 May 2016

V-Reviews: The Legend



The Legend Lives On

The past week I've been playing with the G-Legend Deck 02: "The Overlord Blaze" Tohshiki Kai to give it as an informed review as I can into the product as Kagero is not one of main clans, even though it does hold appeal.

As a player I've always struggled to get into Kagero due to the cost entailed in completing a deck so the Legend Deck was a very welcomed announcement from myself. One of the original clans of the game and successor/homage to 2011's VGE-TD-02: Dragonic Overlord, and yet that said many of the units this new set feature did not début in the original Trial Deck.

The Star of the show and the main card of the deck is the Overlord himself as Dragonic Overlord, "The Legend", this marking the character's 8th iteration in the Cardfight vanguard universe.
 

"The Legend" has two abilities, one for when placed and one to resort to slightly later into the game state when you're at Generation Break 2, the on ride ability cheaply searches the top 5 cards of the deck for any card of the Flame Dragon species. In the stock Legend Deck your targets for this are fairly limited but frequent enough to have a decent chance of success.

The GB2 ability of The Legend likewise relates to Flame Dragons but this time requiring you discard 1 from your hand, specifically a Grade 3 Flame Dragon. As far as this deck is concerned all your Grade 3's are Flame Dragons, with the other Grade 3 being Amber Dragon, Midnight, so that isn't much of an issue. You also need to pay a counter blast alongside that discard but the return you net is The Legend becoming a stride himself, with the ability of a second attack after attacking a Rearguard. This ability is classic Overlord and also fits with the dragons lore personality of he'll fight relying on his own strength instead of relying on unity with others.

His ability of course means you're running an infinite number of strides even if you used up all your G-Zone already. Treating him as a stride though and he is a powerful stride in his own, yet the irony of his ability, and Kagero on the whole is that without rearguard support on the board, their field lacks pressure, Kagero's vanguard's alone will not win games.

The deck's offensive and abrasive Grade 2 units trigger abilities each time a G4 Vanguard attacks. Emperor Dragon Knight, Nehalem gains a 5000 power each time you attack with a Grade 4 but this is only if you have Overlord Vanguard to start with so it won't work outside of an Overlord Deck where he'll just be a 9000 power vanilla, even then if you're an Overlord Vanguard but not a Grade 4, what you you get out of Nehalem is an 11k beat stick, and that's never a bad thing to have. This unit effectively replaces Burning Horn Dragon in all Overlord decks and is so much more dangerous than the unit who's spot he takes over. As a word of advice, if Kagero is your opponent you want Nehalem gone and fast, likewise as a Kagero player you want to defend Nehalem but only so long as it is beneficial to do so.


The other half of this paring come from the unit named Berserk Lord Dragon, he retires an opponent's unit when ever you attack with a Grade 4 Vanguard, and unlike Nehalem this ability applies in any deck, and I would say replaces Twilight Arrow Dragon in any of the other Kagero Decks, yet may be used alongside as well as here's the draw back. This card is completely vanilla if you are not on a grade 4 Vanguard, certainly not an issue in most situations though since you're always looking to stride anyway. Yes it also costs counterblast 1 but it's a versatile retire capable or removing almost anything from the board and for the Legend Deck itself cost isn't much of a concern to the return of a lizard called Conroe.

With Lizard General, Conroe aiding his allies once more this new form is an overlord searcher, but beyond that is also the Legend Decks, and by extension any Overlord Decks', primary damage management unit, for his retire an Overlord vanguard get's to countercharge 2 for every attack it is able to make. With this it is so easy to maintain damage management and even reset all used counter blasts back to 0 in a single turn if desired.

The remaining gang members of the Legend Deck that matter are Aermo, Monica, Tahr, Barh and Undeux.

Aermo returns as the deck's draw and drop perfect guard with the new title Flame of Tranquillity, Aermo.

Monica is a 7k base, 10k booster for Flame Dragons, considering most of Kagero's Vanguards are Flame Dragons that turns her into a 10k booster for most of any Grade 3 and 4 Kagero you're going to be using, thus making her useful in a number of decks.

The Embodiment armaments take on new roles each. Barh returns a 15000 shield intercept, so long as you can return a Grade 3 Flame Dragon to deck from drop to use him. Frankly he's better off being replaced by Dragonic Burnout in Overlord Decks, and while that is a card highly valued now, for players joining I advise waiting till the release of the Radiant Sword expansion in June where Dragonic Burnout will be reprinted as a promotional card you can potentially obtain from the purchase of a sealed box, it will also bring down the cost of singles if you'd rather go that route.
Tahr is the more interesting of the two and deserves being highlighted. He's costly in his activation but worth it in the pay-off. Any unit granted the gift of the spear get's power +4000 and checks across the top 5 cards of the deck to keep your strides going as you search for a Grade 3 from among them whenever the enchanted (or if you follow the lore, cursed) unit attacks your opponent's vanguard. If you're running grade 3's that aren't valid targets for this card, it's worth reconsidering your deck build- as I mentioned earlier. Most of Kagero's Vangaurd and Grade 3s units on the whole are Flame Dragon.
I feel I should rephrase that though. All the Grade 3s that matter (at least currently) are a Flame Dragon without exception.

Rounding off the pack is Undeux as the deck starting vanguard, nothing fancy, GB1 into soul search an "Overlord", the standard deal, but considering the number of Overlords that exist it worth the mention none the less.


I should cover the stride now, of which their is two, or rather three types, and overall a total of 8 G-Units included for the full G-Zone (Untill May 20th) The third type is a reprint promotional card, Dragonic Overlord, The Ace a powerful re-standing stride much like The Legend however his restand is after attacking a Vanguard and is a stride primarily used for pushing damage, it costs counterblast 2, requires flipping another copy of itself face-off as well as another card, but this is all required to keep the card in check, I'd run 4 if I had two more than I did. However it's function is to push the opponent to the brink so you may finish them with the deck's actual finishing stride, Transcendence Divine Dragon, Nouvelle Vague L’Express, and that is the only time I'm typing THAT name in full.

Main Phase Activation for affects that influence the battle phase, very similar to Phantom Blaster "Diablo" of the first Legend Deck. I even think the CB1 and Persona G cost may be the same to. Once active, this unit can not be guarded with Grade 1 cards from the hand, but all other grades may be used, interestingly thins card will soon be nerfed in the face of more guarding methods, namely G-Guardians. But what won't be nerfed due to upcoming cards and gimmicks is his trigger negation for opponent's when they are sitting on five damage or more so there's no way a foe is getting a miraculous last second heal to stay in the game.

Neither of these strides can be used immediately though as both are Generation Break 2, so how about looking at the opening stride this deck offers?

Supreme Heavenly Emperor Dragon, Vortex Desire, darn these long names...

This card is simple yet confusing if you don't understand how the game mechanics work.
If you turn any face down G-Unit face up when this unit attacks, you may retire 1-3 of your opponent's rearguards depending on how many Flame Dragon units are on your Vanguard Circle if this then hits.

How this works is that both your G-Unit Vanguard and any hearts are counted as being on the Vanguard Circle, the soul isn't counted. A heart in Legion grants you 2 hearts rather than one so in this instance for example you count this unit, and any heart cards that are also of the Flame Dragon Species. Notably this means this card is at it's strongest when you stride it atop a Legion such as any Perdition Legion and Dragonic Overlord, The X.




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In my testing of the  Legend Deck I used an ever so slightly modified version in a local. The changes I made were I removed Amber Dragon, Midnight to insert the original Dragonic Overlord, I also removed the Legend Deck Draw Trigger, Goku in favour of Gatling Claw Dragon and took out any none Flame Dragon Triggers I could in order to then fit Flame Dragon Triggers. Lastly I removed the Legend Deck's take on Bahr to put in the original Berserk Dragon.


So what I ended up with was this

(Note to self: use PRO-MATTE or ANY MATTE sleeves for photos)

The G-Zone however was exactly as it comes with the Legend Deck, 2 Vortex, 2 The Ace, 4 L'express.

Local was 6 man if I recall. 3 Swiss Rounds, no top cut. The opponents faced, in order of battles was Shadow Paladin, Revenger, Desperate Dragon, Nubatama Shiranui, and then Angel Feather Nociel all 3 were victories.

Desperate Dragon is exactly what it says it is, it's desperate to be noticed but it's not a strong card even with an old Revenger engine behind it, and what I really mean by that is the old Shadow Paladin Revenger Trial deck of 2014 Winter. With an old core set, that was mediocre on release, minimal modification, and power creep in play, this victory can't really hold much meaning.

Nubatama bricked and failed G-Assist twice, so again a hollow victory that can't be used as a useful test result.

How about Angel Feather? Well this I should have lost and did, except for the fact I 6 damage healed twice in a row, it was close game game either way and I was only forced into that situation due to variance, just as fortune like wise allowed me to survive, I then finished the job.
I can't really determine whether if this result makes for reliable at all or of any use.

But hey, even if the matches were a wash for how useful they were, I won a fresh new Playmat. :D Didn't pull anything useful from packs though. -_-

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At the end of the day what I CAN determine having handled the deck is that it is indeed "competitive" but only to T2 or high T3 standards. Even then DOTX itself, the most consistent Kagero Deck currently isn't the Tier 1 monster it used to be either.

The Legend Deck is ultimately but a starting point, it has the tools it needs to win, but it needs re-working and high investment due to the cost of the cards one would really need to be able to rework it to it's full potential, which for Dragonic Overlord is Dragonic Overlord, The X, in of itself that wouldn't be so bad, but the card you use it with Dragonic Overlord, The End is £22 each and that adds up quick. That said, it's not the most expensive the card has ever been, the concern is The X Legion deck may have lost it's hold in the meta, and yet with Kagero support in Radiant Sword releasing in June, it is a deck that has strong potential to bounce immediate back to the forefront of the meta game, if the competitive enviroment is of interest to you.