Studying the October 2022 OCG Limit Regulations

Published 6 days ago by Therarely Article Views 1,009 Comments 3 Estimated Reading Time 10 minutes Article

Introduction

After yet another 9 months into the OCG metagame, we have recieved the third list of the year! I will write this article to assess exactly what we can make out of these hits, and what we can look forward to in the future. This is a very impactful list, so hold tight! To our American readers... Here is to hoping Mystic Mine gets banned soon. Until then, you may read this article for a deeper understanding of Asia's opinion on their games.

As a final disclaimer, this is about the OCG October 2022 Ban List. Several notable TCG cards like Mystic Mine and Performapal Monkeyboard are banned here.

You can read my previous banlist articles here:
January 2022 / April 2022 / July 2022

October 1st, 2022 Limit Regulations

FORBIDDEN

LIMITED

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SEMI LIMITED

UNLIMITED

Understanding the Current OCG Metagame

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Source: NTUCGM

This picture was created with the 15 – 21 September Metagame in mind. It may not be an exact accurate representation of the current OCG Meta.

Tearlaments is now the most popular deck of the format. Along with the Ishizu cards, Ishizu Tearlaments have completely dominated most of Asia's tournaments (most notably, ALL of Asia's Duelist Cup events) by establishing hyper-resilient Fusion Monsters to push for game. This deck includes an aggressive approach to milling, which would eventually develop into multiple Fusion summons across either player's turns. It is important to note that all other variants of Tearlaments do not have any placements. 

Despite Toadally Awesome's ban in the last list, Spright has managed to cobble an alternative win condition through Union Carrier. Union Carrier would equip a Gigantic Spright with Dragon Buster Destruction Sword, establishing an ancient TCG technique commonly known as "Buster Lock". Along with Gigantic Spright's base 3200 ATK, Spright Elf's arrow protecting it, and with Spright's natural ability to negate and counter singular board wipes, the Buster Lock established within Spright can be extremely difficult to dismantle if unprepared for. 

The other decks in the metagame could be considered more successful as they are direct counters against these two titans of the metagame. Exosister is able to benefit from both archetype's reliance of the Graveyard, and could establish multiple Exosister Xyzs to effectively lock and remove threats in the matchup. Byssted, a new archetype, feasts on the Dark Attribute of these archetypes to interrupt them from completely resolving, as well as developing a bodied threat of their own. Byssted can also be found within many decks as generic "handtraps" against these decks.

Floowandereeze is a deck that is able to fly under these counters as they simply are unaffected by these direct counters. By easily establishing both Floowandereeze & Empen and Barrier Statue of the Stormwinds, this deck can easily shut down the central parts of any meta deck. 

After reading this summary, what did you think about the last three months of the OCG Metagame? What does our new banlist mean for this current state of the metagame? I am here to break it down to you.

Alternatively, you may choose to read up more on the metagame here.

Spright Hits

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As previously mentioned, Spright relies on establishing a strong Buster Lock combo, and serves to protect this through Spright Red and Spright Carrot to counter negations. This will no longer be possible given Union Carrier's ban, and Spright now has to look for an alternative win condition.

Along with this, the consistency of Spright is now heavily hit. Most of the listed cards here could help develop Gigantic Spright, which is a terror to deal with. Spright Jet in particular allows the deck to search for Spright Smashers, an in-deck out to possible floodgates. Having these cards hit will definitely impact the nature of Spright and its possibility of even being used as engine cards. This is my personal opinion, but I can no longer foresee Pure Spright being capable enough to deal with the metagame anymore. In fact, I would like to believe that Spright variants will suffer a lot in the consistency department. This could finally be the hits Spright deserved to stay out of competition for good, but only time, and innovation can tell. 

Ishizu Tearlament Hits

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Although it does look like Ishizu Tearlaments has had a majority of cards hit on the list, only the Ishizu portions have been generously hit to single copies each, and Primeval Planet Perlereino too. Tearlaments Havnis, which can be considered as a handtrap, has been hit to a mere two copies. Tearlament has escaped almost unscathed, having only its supplementary engine affected. 

Unfortunately, these are not very good hits, although the hits to consistency are undeniable. As long as these Ishizu cards exist, even at singular copies, they will continue doing what they excel best within games - aggressive milling and graveyard control. In fact, it could be argued that Kelbek the Ancient Vanguard would have been a better hit - seeing how impactful it is as both a handtrap and milling tool. Keldo the Possessed Statue being at 1 now means the player has only up to 4 times to manipulate the graveyard. This may seem unimportant falling from 6 times, but the most important thing to note is that its grave effect can only be used once per game now.

Fortunately, Herald of Orange Light is now at only 1 copy, which greatly deters Eva variants from existing. This hit also allows more Maxx "C" and Dimension Shifters to resolve without fear, allowing handtraps to finally be of use against this topping deck. 

OCG players may want to refer to the latest TCG variant of the deck, Danger! Tearlaments in order to try a different style of playing the deck. However, the Ishizu variant is still widely considered to be the best yet, so this deck may continue seeing play in the near future. In fact, Tearlament has recieved support with yet another field spell in Photon Hypernova, making Primeval Planet Perlereino's limit almost irrelevant. 

Personally, I feel these hits are simply not enough, and they do not address the main concerns against the deck. However, this is a start to recognising Tearlament's strengths, and maybe we can expect harsher hits in the next list. Or have the next set introduce even more tier 0 decks.

Notable Off - Meta Hits

Adventurer Engine

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The Adventurer Engine was notoriously limited for providing free resource generation, disruption and spot removal within only a few mere cards. This engine is undeniably the strongest engine of the year, and only saw lesser use by a heavy restriction on their key cards Rite of Aramesir and Water Enchantress of the Temple. Despite that, Konami has introduced new Adventurer support in hopes that these cards do not define the entire archetype. With these limitations, players may finally be able to consider a pure Adventurer deck or such in the future. Either way, hitting the omni-negation in this archetype will definitely dissuade this engine to be played in literally every other deck in the future. 

Floowandereeze

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Floowandereeze now serves as the stun deck of its format, and everybody knows exactly how fun it is to sit across a stun deck that they have not prepared for game 1. The gameplan for this deck has not changed at all, except adding a few more direct counters against topping decks like using Ghost Reaper & Winter Cherries and Dark Ruler No More. These hits will serve to continue hindering the gameplan of Floowandereeze without impacting their general strategy, and you may continue expecting to see this deck more in the future. 

Interestingly, Floowandereeze & Robina can tutor Yata-Garasu from the deck, so it may see future play! However, results from the TCG has shown that this legendary bird has yet to make any appearance, so we could be seeing a parallel here in Asia.

Other Meta Considerations

These are all cards seeking to slowly climb out of the list one card at a time! 

ABC-Dragon Buster can finally go to two copies since Union Carrier is finally banned. There is not much to talk about in regards to unions, especially given how extremely outclassed they are against the current metagame. In fact, Invoked's Magical MeltdownSPYRAL Resort and Phantom Knight's The Phantom Knights of Torn Scales have the same issue too. The game is no longer slow enough for them to compete.

Double Iris Magician may be slightly more promising, given Dracoslayer's excellent performance at YCS Japan this year. Pendulums are always a hidden gem to be wary of, especially when Astrograph Sorcerer is in the format. 

Sky Strikers are expected to recieve even more support cards in the future set Selection 5, so this unhit on Sky Striker Mecha - Widow Anchor is a clear indication of Konami wanting us to try the deck again. Why does this deck get so much love? We can only endure the waves of support they give Sky Striker Ace - Raye.

Generic Hits

Lightning Storm and Dimension Shifter are generically good cards to use against every deck possible. Even though decks are now running the infamous Raigeki alongside Lightning Storm, putting these cards at 2 copies each reduces the possibility of an opposing comeback going second on game 2s and onward.

Time Seal is an interesting re-addition to our current cardpool, given that Mecha Phantom Beast Auroradon is still legal in this list. The American side of Yugioh could not find any meta usage with this card, but maybe the OCG will. Who knows? The huge difference in our cardpools may allow for something interesting, or this card would experience the same thing it did in the TCG - completely outclassed and outcrept by fast-paced games.

Genex Ally Birdman is part of an olden infinite loop FTK including Koa'ki Meiru Doom. In the same case as Time Seal, these sort of combos are very vunerable to handtraps, or just the fast paced metagame. This unhit will be very irrelevant, unless someone comes up with some sort of combo in the future...

What do I think of this List? 

Some early results from the Japanese metagame has shown that Ishizu Tearalaments has achieved tier 0 status, now that their single competitior Spright no longer has the same amount of consistency. Tearalaments has had almost no cards hit, and will continue to recieve even more support in the upcoming Photon Hypernova. This could had been a very worrying approach, if not for the fact that Kashtira, a group of psychic monsters focused on banishing face-down, is expected to overwhelm the metagame once Photon Hypernova releases.

These hits are centered towards taking down the consistency of the two best decks only, and grants a small boost towards previous power-crept meta worthy decks. It may be a sign that the game is continously elevating to even faster decks.

Personally, I have mixed feelings towards this list. On one hand, we no longer need to play around the Dragon Buster Lock. I paid for these 15 cards in my extra deck and I would like to use them! But on the other hand, we still have to deal with a barely tapped Tearlaments for yet another 3 months. Tier 0 formats are not very enjoyable, especially when the archetype in question rewards lucky mills. We can only rely on the impact of Photon Hypernova to balance out the metagame before the year ends.

So what did you think about this banlist? Were these the correct hits? How many did you get right? Let me know in the comments below!


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