Evil Eye is a fairly underrated deck released back in 2019 with INCH. It’s been an overlooked strategy for the most part save for a few loyal fans. Today in collaboration with the Evil Eye Discord, we’ll be presenting a guide for this wonderful archetype! Special thanks to them! Make sure to pay them a visit after going through this article!
While the LP demerits and the cards being clunky at times may prove off-putting, there’s a lot of unique potential here that can be explored. Its expansive and powerful S/T lineup and decently synergistic monsters are nothing to scoff at. Duelists aspiring to go toe to toe with Selene’s influence may be rewarded.
The main topic would be to help players learn and understand how these cards tick, but we’ll be mentioning variants later down the line. Without further ado, let’s dive right in!
Table of Contents
Observing the Watchers
Let’s start our discussion with Serziel, Watcher of the Evil Eye, arguably the most important card in the deck. This watcher is able to tutor any Evil Eye card from your Deck. If you have no access to Evil Eye of Selene, getting to it is the top priority. When armed with Selene, this card becomes a massive thorn to out, boasting incredible protection as well as increasing its ATK.
It also packs Quick Effect disruption to boot, as it’s able to destroy Special Summoned monsters. The mandatory self-pop isn’t too troublesome, as a well-built Evil Eye deck can capitalize on it. Timing this effect is key in holding your ground against other decks. It’s worth noting that Serziel is a hand trap magnet, so that’s something to keep in mind. Most builds are able to get around this one way or another, but it’s still a good thing to acknowledge as it helps you not tunnel vision while playing the Deck.
Should you already have comfortable access to Selene, there’s a bevy of other cards in the deck’s expansive arsenal that can be picked. We’ll be crossing that bridge later on and going over their use cases.
Make sure to max out on Serziel in any variant of the deck, especially Pure. You’ll be wanting to see this card as it is one of the best EE has to offer.
Medusa, Watcher of the Evil Eye is the other watcher of the Deck and while she’s not as strong as Serziel, she offers some nice utility regardless. The ability to recur your Evil Eye cards upon being Normal Summoned is a nice way to get some follow-up, as nothing else really gets them back in the rotation. In addition to this, her Quick Effect is disruptive in its own right. Especially as it can punish GY-centric strategies harder than Serz. Lastly, the downside isn’t as bad as you can freely banish expended cards that you no longer need.
However, this watcher not being immediately live does put off some people from running her. Only working on Normal Summon can be clunky as well. Despite this, she’s a decent option to run especially in Pure, while other variants may opt to not use her. In tandem with Awakening, Reemergence, and Burial Goods, you can get a lot more mileage out of the effect from the get-go.
Play 1-2 copies in pure to round out your Normal Summons alongside Serziel. She’s not often a turn 1 play, but a solid option in the grind game.
Basilius, Familiar of the Evil Eye is the second most important monster in Evil Eye’s lineup thanks to its two incredible effects. Bringing itself out for free is always nice as it can serve as a nice extender in most cases, enabling Link 2 + Serziel with Selene setups. The real kicker with this familiar comes with its ability to dump Evil Eye S/T from your Deck to the GY. Both equip cards of the deck just so happen to have nifty effects in the GY!
Of the two, the best target 9 times out of 10 is Gorgoneio! Gorgoneio’s GY effect essentially lets you search any Evil Eye S/T aside from itself, allowing you to perform some flexible plays. If you already have Gorg, you can also dump an Evil Eye of Selene! This is because Selene can re-set itself from the GY which is key in some scenarios.
Basilus is also able to work by itself in crustier situations. Thanks to Awakening and Almiraj, you can go for Empress Gorgon, usually with an equip! The Link-2 presents a great threat to most decks, especially when armed with Selene.
The general consensus for the ratios is 1-2 copies. It’s easy to get your hands on usually but the second copy helps a lot in drawn-out duels.
Catoblepas, Familiar of the Evil Eye on the other hand is the less important of the two companions. It does have its moments and it shines a bit more explosive builds like the Link-2 + Serziel version but it’s not as strong in Pure.
The ability to summon itself back from the GY is decent and the protection is alright but not perfect. This is because the popular ways to deal with Selene tend to be non-destruction as it gets it out of the GY! Cosmic Cyclone has been running around in the meta for example. But still, it’s a nice bonus to have at times and makes dealing with the Equips a bigger hurdle.
1 copy works for this fellow, Pure can get by with not running it.
Gorgon, Empress of the Evil Eyed is the deck’s go-to Link in terms of Pure builds, thanks to her nifty abilities. She’s fairly accessible due to her lenient materials, meaning you can often get to her in most games. In addition to this, she gets quite beefy thanks to both Selene and her ATK gain effect. The real prize comes in the form of her Quick Effect.
Blanket effect negation is highly appreciated in the modern game as shown with cards like Effect Veiler and Impermanence still killing it. This gives the deck some nice options as there may be times where you wouldn’t want to pop something, rather just stop their effects. Lastly, the mandatory effect is usually harmless to you. In some cases, you can even benefit from it!
Some routes can lead to her turn 1, thanks to the likes of Awakening and Basilius. Her effect is less risky to use in comparison with Serz thanks to the downside being not as harsh. Pure can also apply a lot more pressure by having both her and Serziel armed with eyes to great effect.
All in all, a definitive member of the arsenal for sure.
Zerrziel, Ruler of the Evil Eyed is an extremely sick boss monster for the deck but more often than not he’s a luxury pick in a majority of the games. Don’t get me wrong though as it can definitely be used to make extremely aggressive pushes thanks to its double attack trait. However, its materials requiring 2+ Evil Eyes and the double ATK being conditional hurts this a fair bit.
You run it as a flex option since the Extra Deck isn’t tight.
The Twin Mirrors
Let’s take our time to go over the equip spells as they are pivotal in making sure the deck functions to its fullest. Evil Eye of Selene is the main one, It gives any Evil Eye monster incredible protection, making them hard to out for a good number of decks! In addition, you also get a continuous ATK by trading off 500 LP. This makes your monsters an ever-looming threat which applies a lot of pressure.
This isn’t too big of a deal, but you do have to be cautious when it comes to timed events. Not only that, most if not all of your arsenal get stronger effects if Selene is face-up on the field. This can be seen from the monster’s Quick Effects and the Spells / Traps. One last thing to note about Selene is its ability to re-set itself at the cost of banishing EE backrow. This is a great way to get it back and make use of already spent cards.
Evil Eye of Gorgoneio is an interesting one as it treats itself as Selene while face-up on the field. It’s not as strong defensively as it doesn’t offer the protection. However, while on the field it gives you a massive ATK boost based on the LP difference between your opponent.
Since the deck has a tendency to burn through your LP, in a pinch you’re able to use Gorgoneio to close out the game in a decisive swing! Having more copies of “Selene” never hurts too, as the deck really struggles when you don’t see an equip or a way to it. However, the real prize of playing it comes in the form of its GY effect, mentioned earlier. There’s a lot of Spells / Traps to talk about, so let’s briefly go over what they do and how to use them optimally.
Run 3 Selene and 2 Gorgoneio.
Gaze Upon Thy Tools
Evil Eye Domain – Pareidolia is an integral piece of the strategy, able to search any monster of the Deck to the hand when activated. This is great as it adds a lot of consistency. Serziel and the Field are searchable by each other which helps streamline some lines of play. The damage reflection isn’t too important, but it’s nice to have. If the domain ever gets destroyed by a card effect, you can add back an Evil Eye monster in the GY. In pure, you’re usually triggering this off Serziel’s mandatory self-pop, Some variants are able to abuse this effect to the fullest, especially with Destroy Phoenix Enforcer.
Extend your Vision
These two cards occasionally fulfill the same roles but they’re definitely different enough to warrant discussion. Evil Eye Awakening is an extremely potent extender, able to set up Link 2 + Serziel with ease. It also helps you play around disruption, both getting your Normal bounced or sent to the GY for example. Basilius routes in particular heavily enjoy searching this spell off Gorgoneio. Running 1-2 copies works fine in Pure, as some appreciate drawing into it more. Combo heavy builds may prefer to max out though,
Evil Eye Reemergence is a strange one and is not often ran too much, but it serves as a decent 1-of that helps in making either Link monster in a pinch. The fiend lock is a little cumbersome for non-pure variants, and the GY effect leaves a lot to be desired. 0-1 works here.
These two nifty cards round out the spell lineup of the Evil Eye strategy. While they’re often not mandatory, it doesn’t hurt to run either and they’re nice to have at 1 copy.
Evil Eye Confrontation serves as a nice way to keep up the pressure once you’ve already established, as it needs an Evil Eye monster already face-up on the field to use. Still, it can also be searched to clear off pesky backrow. If you have the equip face-up, it has the bonus of banishing the Spell / Trap it targeted. Against certain decks that can get back their backrow pieces, this can be a nice crutch.
Evil Eye Repose has three interesting effects and all of them are mildly useful one way or another. The first effect allows you to get back some advantage by banishing a spent EE to draw. Extravagance and Prosperity do conflict with this, but this really doesn’t matter too much. You normally use Repose much later in the game, well after you’ve already used either pot.
The premium effect of course comes in the form of the non-targeting banish! Not only does it help get rid of troublesome monsters, but it also banishes them too which makes them harder to get back. This makes it a nice tech in some situations, though you do need the equip face-up to make this work. Lastly, the effect to bring back banished EE cards back to the GY is alright but nothing to write home about.
Last but not the least, let’s swiftly go over the three Evil Eye Trap cards. There would be 4, but alas the one revealed in Battle of Chaos was a fluke. Two of them are notable, while the other one is not so much.
Evil Eye Retribution is the archetypal counter trap and it comes in swinging! Thanks to Retri, the deck is able to save itself against high-impact Spells or Traps that would otherwise ruin it. Cards like Lightning Storm or Evenly Matched come to mind. The Selene bonus can also be extremely clutch, especially against the likes of Red Reboot!
Evil Eye Defeat is another good Trap card of the deck, providing great removal to the table. There are times where you really don’t want monsters destroyed or hitting the GY and bouncing fills that role quite well! When Selene is on the field, this effect expands into a double bounce, giving the deck an incredible edge.
A Watcher equipped with Selene becomes a lot harder to deal with when you’re able to cut your opponent’s plays off with either Retri and Defeat and thus click with the gameplan well.
Evil Eye Mesmerism on the other hand is the black sheep of the Evil Eye lineup. While changing control is technically a strong effect, it needs a lot of setup and tends to fail more often than not. The upsides are simply too slim to get consistent use out of it.
All in all, 1-2 for both Defeat and Retribution, whereas Mesmerism is often not recommended.
EE is a pretty versatile deck, so here are some sample lists courtesy of the Evil Eye Discord to get you started! First, we have Pure which is a nice introductory version to learn the basics of the deck. You can branch out to the other variants once you get the core aspects of the strategy down.
Cosmic might seem scary, but it actually works well in tandem with Gorgoneio and helps make dropping Serziel and friends safer. Still, you can opt not to run it if you wish.
Stun Evil Eye focuses on a lot of floodgates and keeping the game state simple to snowball with an EE monster + Eye of Selene in order to overwhelm opponents!
Evil Eye of the Phoenix is the newest take on the Link 2 + Serziel variant and it packs a doozy and a half! Alongside strong consistency, it even makes use of the Pareidolia‘s trigger effect! Not only can it SEGOC Phoenix Enforcer’s revive, but it also gets you back free resources to boot. Keep an eye out for this one!
That marks the end of our article giving a solid overview of the Evil Eye deck and strategy! Until next time folks! Eye hope you have a good time and enjoy your stay at the Pareidolia! Just make sure not to lose all of your LP, of course.