Top 32: Carl Manigat (Hieratic) vs. Joshua Schmidt (Mermails)

I was happy to welcome a “new face” to the Feature Match table for the Top 32: Carl Manigat. He’s following Samuel Pedigo’s lead and trying to win an event on foreign soil, however, to do so he must now overcome Germany’s veteran Joshua Schmidt, a former World Championship competitor!

Manigat brought something exotic with him: Hieratic Dragons. Schmidt on the other hand was settling on something more popular: Mermails. With that said, let’s see if the exotic choice could give Manigat the edge or whether Schmidt’s experience would prevail!

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Schmidt’s 5 was enough to beat Manigat’s 3 and the German opted to go first.

Schmidt started with [a teus], discarding [a leed]. [a pike] followed with [a gunde] getting sent to the Graveyard, another [a gunde] was searched for and got added to Schmidt’s hand, [a leed] then cost Manigat [eset] from his hand, Schmidt overlaid both of his monsters to [xyz] [a gaios] and after a Spell or Trap, it was Manigat’s turn.

He set 2 and [a sphere] got activated by Schmidt who searched for [a linde].
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Manigat was about to start a flurry of Special Summons!
Manigat was about to start a flurry of Special Summons!

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Manigat now went over his Extra Deck before he summoned [tefnuit]. [convo] followed, which helped him add [su] to his hand, which then got [ss]ed. [tefnuit] left the field and [f guard] entered it. Both monsters were then used to [ss] [brd], which attempted to wipe the field! That was fine with Schmidt and Manigat lost [reckless] he set earlier.

[a teus] got summoned, [a pike] followed, [tidal] got discarded and Schmidt started searching his Deck, finding [corseca] and adding it to his hand. With 2 monsters in face-up [def], he passed play.
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Hieratics are one of the Decks where the Dragon Rulers are still fitting in perfectly!
Hieratics are one of the Decks where the Dragon Rulers are still fitting in perfectly!

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[redox] got [ss]ed and it took down [a teus]. Play was back to Schmidt.

The German [ss]ed his own Dragon Ruler back from his Graveyard, he then [ns]ed [a mark] and that caused Manigat to access his Side Deck!

[h2]Joshua Schmidt takes the lead![/h2]

This time it would be Manigat going first and he did so with a set Spell or Trap before passing.
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Manigat was able to move faster than lightning!
Manigat was able to move faster than lightning!

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[upstart] gave Manigat a welcome Life Points increase, [a linde] got [ns]ed and it attacked directly. Schmidt added 2 back row cards and he passed with 3 cards in hand.

Manigot seemed to have a couple of options, but he decided to take it slow and only add a face-down monster.
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It might not count as a Mexican standoff, but it was a standoff nonetheless!
It might not count as a Mexican standoff, but it was a standoff nonetheless!

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This forced the game into a stalemate, with Schmidt switching his monster to [def] and adding a back row card rather than attacking.

It was hard to tell who was gaining more of an advantage because of the slow pace. Manigat now added another back row card, which was revealed to be [mst] in his End Phase since Schmidt’s copy took it down.

A second set monster for Schmidt.

[reckless] provided Manigat with even more options. He summoned [eset] and Schmidt had no response. [convo] followed, this got him [su] as well as [luster] in face-up [def]. [needle] got activated, seemingly stopping Manigat’s combo dead in its tracks; both players still had a face-down [def] monster.
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A Needle Ceiling wiped the board!
A Needle Ceiling wiped the board!

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Schmidt went searching since his [a linde] got destroyed and he found [a leed]. Manigat then banished [su] and [eset] to [ss] [blaster]. He [fs]ed [f guard], he went for [crimson blader], but [warning] made sure it never hit play. [hole] then completely wiped the field and Manigat passed play.

[a gunde] got discarded so Schmidt could [ss] [a teus]. [a leed] got ressurected and [a linde] also joined Schmidt’s field. All of his monsters attacked directly, leaving Manigat on 1600 Life Points.
Schmidt proceeded with [mp] 2, [ss]ing [a gaios]. He set a back row card and ended.

Manigat didn’t draw for his turn, but [upstart] allowed him to thin out his Deck. He [ss]ed [tefnuit] and this time it was Schmidt discarding [maxx]. [convo] was next and [su] got added to Manigat’s hand.
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Both players were now putting their money on the heavy hitters!
Both players were now putting their money on the heavy hitters!

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Manigat had to consider his following play carefully. Thanks to the [maxx] that drew him plenty of cards the turn before, he was still not out of options.
He seemed like he went over a couple of options before settling on Tributing [tefnuit] to [ss] [su]. Schmidt drew a card for [maxx]. [f guard] got added to Manigat’s field. [luster] also joined Manigat’s field which made it 3 draws for Schmidt’s [maxx]. This seemed to have turned into a situation of “go big or go home” already…

[blaster] got [ss]ed and then, together with [f guard], it was used to [synch] [scrap dragon]. Manigat set a Spell or Trap and he destroyed it for the effect of [scrap dragon]. He then went on and [ss]ed [con ptol] and then some…
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Schmidt had a million cards in hand, but nothing to stop this!
Schmidt had a million cards in hand, but nothing to stop this!

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He declared attacks, waiting whether Schmidt had found something like a [gorz] that could buy him another turn. Alas, it never came, so we now needed to play a third game!

[h2]Carl Manigat goes big and ties the score![/h2]

We’ve seen this before when Samuel Pedigo went “all in” with his Geargia Deck despite his opponent drawing plenty of cards. Sometimes, your only out is to put it all on the line and risk it all. Why try to survive for a few more turns when it’s only becoming more and more likely that your opponent can assemble his combo when you can instead try to wrap things up right away?

Schmidt started the third game in a much less aggressive fashion, only setting a monster and 2 Spell or Trap Cards.

Manigat had a Spell or Trap of his own, but [ashes] got destroyed by [mst].
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Schmidt was pulling ahead and fast!
Schmidt was pulling ahead and fast!

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Schmidt had [a mark] and he [fs]ed [a linde]. Manigat dropped [maxx], he took the damage, but Schmidt opted against [ss]ing.

Manigat added [tefnuit].

Schmidt was a little surprised it was his turn again already; he added [a pike], not activating its effect. [a linde] then declared an attack and Manigat dropped a second [maxx]! Schmidt lost his monster and he [ss]ed [a leed]. Manigat drew. [a leed] attacked over [tefnuit], [a mark] followed suit and Schmidt [ss]ed [ahi], [a pike]'[s] attack connected and when Manigat attempted to buy himself another turn with [scarecrow], a [debunk] from Schmidt’s back row crushed the dreams of the American!

[h2]Joshua Schmidt advances to the Top 16![/h2]

Despite a double [maxx], Carl Manigat couldn’t quite follow the example that Samuel Pedigo had set in Turin. In the end, a [debunk] was all Schmidt needed to wrap things up in just 2 turns in the final Duel!
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