With the newest wave of support, F.A. has become the archetype with the most field spells in the game. This latest addition has fueled the archetype with more flexibility and possibilities. These new cards join U.A. and F.A. through a couple of cards that are treated as part of both.
Table of Contents
Card Games on Motorcycles the deck! Lore wise, F.A.s exist in the same universe as U.A.s. But instead of being based on physical sports, they are based on racing. Their gimmicks reflect their theme well. Their ATK is proportional to their level, which increases every time a spell is used, accelerating them. Additionally, some monsters gain extra effects after reaching a certain speed. They have an emphasis on synchro summoning, enabled by their tuner F.A. Auto Navigator. Navigator also searches the circuits. When destroyed on field, they search another card. It is also worth mentioning that many cards in the archetype have effects that have to do with the Battle Phase. These effects are good casually but likely won’t propel them into competitive.
As a summary, the points of synergy for F.A.s are from being synchro based, Wind, Machines, and benefitting from self-destruction. In order to understand how the new support benefits the deck, let’s take a look at what was already there.
Of the F.A. cards, half of them are simply too bad to see play. There are 3 level 4 monsters, with F.A. Hang on Mach being the best by far. Unaffected by monsters of lower level/rank and becoming a Masked Hero Dark Law at level 7 or higher. F.A. Sonic Meister is too focused on the battle phase and F.A. Whip Crosser is too situational to play in multiples. F.A. Dark Dragster is one of the few special summon options available to the deck and brings nice utility.
In the Extra Deck is the ever so famous F.A. Dawn Dragster, popularized as a generic synchro with spell and trap negation. F.A. Motorhome Transport is their boss monster, which gets protections from destruction at level 11 and a once per turn revival at 13. Sadly, there are better level 9 synchros to go into even within its own deck. Finally, their link monster is F.A. Shining Star GT, a parallel to Dawn Dragster but negating monster effects. However, the conditions to be able to negate and be at a decent stat line are too demanding for a deck that has trouble generating resources.
The Support Crew
While there are now four field spells, realistically only three of them are worth mentioning. F.A. Off-Road Grand Prix is the weakest for two reasons. First, it only increases levels during the Main Phase, lowering your damage output. Second, its unique effect requires your opponent to do something and can be easily played around. F.A. City Grand Prix does the same as Off-Road, but during the Battle Phase too, and makes your F.A.s untargetable. A level 7 Hang on Mach backed by this field spell is a decent threat on its own.
F.A. have more than just field spells. Their other spells, all of them Quick-Plays of course, suffer from a certain ironic slowness. The most used is F.A. Test Run, non-targeting destruction so long as you control an F.A. F.A. Pit Stop slows your car temporarily for some draws, more each time you pass by and reborns with its GY effect. Even if the draw might seem good, you need to resolve multiple of them during the duel without using their GY effect for it to yield an advantage, which is a reason most have dropped this card. By now you may have noticed the small part mentioning “except the turn this card was sent to the GY.” This tremendously slows down the combo plays the deck can make.
Benefiting from destruction has helped them pair with Zoodiac, Ancient Gear, and Metalfoes in the past. In the case of Zoodiac and Ancient Gear, it was small engines consisting of Zoodiac Barrage and Ancient Gear Catapult to destroy their fields and gain further advantage from it. For Metalfoes it was much the same but usually incorporating a bigger engine to facilitate Extra Deck plays. Pendulum Summoning also helped the deck save its normal summon. Pure versions had a harder time getting their game plan going, especially if they filled the extra space with handtraps. There was even a stun version that had Hang on Mach cosplay as a conditional Banisher of the Radiance.
F.A. Winners? Oh yeah, that’s a card. If you want to try for the fun of it to make it work go ahead, but it is terribly unreliable.
The New Gears
The new cards are still recent, so innovation and refinement needs to happen.
U.A. Hyper Stadium is the first field spell that generates advantage when activated, instead of when destroyed. It essentially acts as a tutor for any monster in both archetypes. Acknowledging the fact that the deck has to play a lot of field spells, it even encourages drawing multiples. Auto Navigator or any other circuit give an additional summon that the deck sorely needed for those hands jammed with cars. A common play involves normal summoning any F.A., activating this, searching for Navi, summoning Navi, and getting an extra field spell for an additional summon.
U.A. Locker Room somewhat mitigates the cost of Stadium’s additional summon and helps search for more useful cards, encouraging you to play multiples of the monsters. This mulligan effect is probably better in U.A. as opposed to F.A. as they are all about cycling cards on field and hand.
Which direction to go?
New releases have paved the road to new builds. Recently released in the Machina Structure deck, a small engine to summon Machina Citadel can be included. Parallel eXceed can be summoned off of Navigator turning into Linkuriboh to make Rank 4 or used with a revived Navigator for a synchro or link play.
Prior iterations always had trouble balancing monsters, support cards, and field spells. They would brick on too many of one and be unable to play. That is why, regardless of the version, the new field spell is mandatory. It allows you to reduce the size of your engine without hurting its output by always getting you the right racer for the right track, especially Navigator. For now, however, the most powerful version has to be F.A. Synchro.
The existence of Crystron Halqifibrax is a boon to many decks, with one of the main routes using Mecha Phantom Beast Auroradon. Auto Navigator acts as a Jet Synchron for the deck that gains advantage instead of loses it, provided there is an F.A. to help summon it on the field. From there, typical Synchro combos are performed. The upside is you get to play a more consistent version of the deck. You are playing a deck that uses both machines and synchros, so the inclusion of Auroradon feels natural, not forced. Also, the deck has relative ease in making certain XYZ, provided you manage the levels correctly. This means True King of All Calamities finds a place here as well. The downside, you are doing the same thing as many others but your backup plan is F.A. instead of Eldlich.
U.A.F.A. is another fun version that has popped up. What if we combine both archetypes by taking advantage of their shared cards? The U.A. cards bring consistent damage and a better ability to play of the opponent’s turn. A field of U.A. Midfielder and U.A. Perfect Ace, with U.A. Playing Manager in hand offers lots of play. The biggest enabler of this strategy is Hyper Stadium for letting you chose the side of the deck you want to access.
The support gives new wheels to the deck, but they are still just training wheels. F.A. tries to do too many things at once and accomplish none efficiently. What the deck has isn’t bad, if you take away the unnecessary restrictions, but still requires outside boosts to be complete.
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- New F.A. Support – Updates and Upgrades - July 28, 2020
- Boss Monsters – The Changes and Generic Link Options - July 3, 2020