The Decks to beat at YCS Toulouse

[p]So much can change in a short space of time. Following YCS Leipzig, it was clear that there were 3 Decks that stood head and shoulders above the rest. However, that has all changed as recent events over in America have turned that “Big Three” into a “Big FIVE”. This sets up an interesting proposition where any of these could win, or even a sixth could sneak in and pick up the pieces from the epic battles we’re sure to see this weekend.[/p]

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Could it win again?

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Even within this set of 5 Decks there is one that stands out. Dino Rabbit has already won 3 YCS events (Brighton, Leipzig and Lima) and frequently takes up the most spots in the Top 32. It’s the easiest Deck to use out of the “Big 5” and that’s something to take into consideration when playing in such major events. A few Duelists I spoke to at the 100th YCS said that because Rabbit is a relatively simple Deck to play, you’re less likely to make mistakes in the later rounds when you’re tired. This is especially important towards the end of Day 1 when you want to put yourself in the best position possible to start off well on Day 2.

The Deck itself is already well-established at this point and most variants play in the same way. [rabbit] Summons 2 Dinosaurs from your Deck and then sets up either [laggia] or [dolkka], which can negate various cards and effects. [tour] can then help Summon [leviair], which brings back Rabbit to finish the Duel off. It’s strong yet simple, and has been working so far for several people.
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Can this combo Deck fianlly go all the way?

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Despite the strength and consistency of Dino Rabbit, it’s Wind-Ups that several Duelists take into consideration the most when building their Decks for a YCS. It’s the most explosive Deck of the bunch, with a Turn 1 play that can eliminate an entire hand in a flurry of mechanical mayhem. That being said though, Wind-Ups haven’t won a YCS yet, and while they’re certainly packed with power, there’s always the chance that the Deck will not get its combos off and lose to something more stable.

With any combo Deck you often need another card in play in order to make the one in your hand/Graveyard “become live”, and it could be this reliance on multiple cards which is holding the Deck back. While nobody can deny that the Wind-Up combo is a powerful play, the Deck might be better suited to serving as a reliable Xyz Summoning engine that can bring out Rank 3, 4 and 5 monsters and back them up with the appropriate Spell and Trap Cards. We might even see this idea of “new Wind-Ups” emerge today, who knows.
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Can they go one better than they did in Leipzig?

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Inzektors are the third of the established Decks we’ve seen do well in recent months. This primarily DARK Deck combines various Inzektor monsters by equipping them to each other before being used to destroy opposing cards, Special Summon free monsters, and so-on. They’re an aggressive Deck that hits hard and fast, before finishing off Duels either through normal attacks or Xyz Summons.

With both Inzektors and Wind-Ups in play Duelists have to make some tough decisions when building their Decks. “Hand traps” like [maxx] and [veiler] are very strong tech choices today but there’s only so much space you can dedicate to them in your Deck. [maxx] is strong against Wind-Ups but doesn’t do much to Inzektors, while [veiler] is the opposite, and with Dino Rabbit still being the most popular Deck there’s less chance of either being played, which allows Inzektors and Wind-Ups to gain an edge.
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Can Grapha grab another YCS Title this weekend?

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Next up is Grapha’s mighty Dark World army! Dark World have always been “nearly there” in terms of tournament success and playoff spots, but Michael Balan’s win at the biggest TCG event of all time (the 100th YCS) gave the Deck a massive boost. He showed the world a completely different type of Dark World Deck; one that doesn’t rely on [goldd] and [sillva], but instead draws tons of cards and unleashes Grapha amongst unsuspecting opponents!

This low monster / high support style of Deck could be just the innovation Dark World needs to become a real tournament force, and with the Dueling world convinced that Dark World can win major events, it looks like Grapha’s here to stay.
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Are we due a heroic performance?

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Finally there’s the HERO Decks, which despite the performance of Dark World were the most talked-about Deck heading into recent events. There are so many ways this Deck can be built that when you see a [stratos] on the opposing side of the table you still don’t know what to expect. There’s the “BubbleBeat” variant that Special Summons all sorts of Fusion and Xyz Monsters, the Masked HERO version that combines [zero] and [acid] to completely devastate opposing fields, and even the [drain] version that can shut down Decks completely while still Summoning the biggest monsters possible.

When all’s said and done, each of these HERO Decks has a very solid core to them and a versatile Side Deck that allows it to switch variants and/or cover all of its matchups. With the other 4 Decks battling against each other there’s every opportunity that HERO could be the surprise winner this weekend. Also, YCS Toulouse marks the first major event that [shining] in available for European Duelists to use, and I for one am quite excited to see what strategies people come up with.[/div]

[p]All of this leads us into a very exciting 2 days of Dueling action, and it’s near impossible to predict at this stage what Decks will make it into the Top 4. Whatever makes it though, you’ll find out here first![/p]
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