Trends of the Meta: December 2020

Trends come and go in Yugioh’s ever-evolving metagame. The new ban list has recently come out and LCS 9 has concluded with Virtual World being the winner. Drytron also received a solid amount of attention in its early stages! Aside from that, we have a bunch of other decks that are certainly seeing decent levels of play, and new developments to talk about.

Check out the winning LCS decklists here!

Purple Cards Good?!

The first trend revolves around Trap cards back to metagame play. The last format was quite intense and forced heavy hand trap counts among other things.

Not just conventional options like Impermanence (though we’ll get to that in a bit), but actual cards like Torrential Tribute seeing success! How about that?

Return to Eldlich

Eldlich took a back seat last format, with the high octane combo big boys running around to ruin its day. After the ban list, however, it’s proving to be one of the most consistent strategies around.

Its native cards like Conquistador and Huaquero can go toe-to-toe with the best of the metagame, and Golden Lord himself is not a threat to be underestimated. Cursed Eldland is one of the most insane searchers printed in recent history, to give an idea of what to expect.

This results in a lot of hybrids popping up for Eld, either as another independent engine or a strong top-end to complement the deck. Examples of mixes include Dragoon Eldlich, Dogmatika, Zoodiac (sometimes both!) Evil Twins, which was popularized by Koty Angeloff, and so on.

(Side note: Dragoon plus backrow is a decently legitimate strategy to mess within the current format.)

However, not all is sunshine and rainbows for Eld. Its increased presence does mean more techs ran against it. Despite this, it’s a formidable pick in the current meta that’s fairly flexible. A great scholar has once said, “Pay eight, feel great.”

There’s recent hype of Eldlich builds making use of Chaos Ruler, the Chaotic Magical Dragon. Armed with a small Rokket engine, this synchro brings a massive body on board and gross amounts of advantage by getting the Eld engine online. It even adds a LIGHT or a DARK monster as a bonus, say Ecclesia. Keep an eye out for this one! For the foreseeable future, the trend of this deck rising is here to stay.

Old Faces

The second trend we’re diving into is the return of these old Normal Trap cards back into the fray.

Torrential Tribute and Needle Ceiling are ridiculously old cards that are currently seeing legitimate competitive play right now. Why is that? Let’s investigate.

Torrential is a card that has a lot of history and power behind it, being absolutely devastating when it landed.

Needle Ceiling was a card that saw play every now and then when the situation arose, acting as a card that can punish the opponent if timed correctly.

It’s been ages since any of these were relevant, so what’s up with that?

Virtual World pushing the power of Calamities (VFD) and the likes of Zoodiac, Dogma, and, Eldlich have pushed the game into an awkward position. It just so happens that these two cards line up well against the meta.

Torrential Tribute shreds through Virtual World if you know what you’re doing, preventing them from sticking their bodies is key and TT does that. VW’s engine is disgustingly strong at mowing down monsters and face-up threats, but not against mass removal.
Zoo also does not enjoy the prospect of running into the trap, as it completely blanks their turn. A well-planned activation also stunts on Drytron.

Needle has similar applications but trades immediate power for a little more flexibility, so at the end of the day, it depends on what you prefer.

A lot of people are re-hyping Dragon Link once again, which these board wipes can help out in dealing with them too.

Both of these cards aren’t perfect, but they’re good at filling their roles.

As for new faces, Evenly Matched and Ice Dragon’s Prison are both spicy cards in this new format. The former shreds Eldlich, while the latter helps vs Dragoon and other common decks.

Metagame Developments

A little bit after the LCS there’s been a couple of new innovations and techs to look forward to in both Drytron and Virtual World. We’ll also be checking out Hand Trap usage trends and cards to think about in the future!

Not Quite Dragons

It’s unclear who’s the one who 100% perfected the Chaofeng strategy, but credits can be given to N3sh for his early theory with it. In any case, what’s this for?

The first effect doesn’t come up, as you won’t be making it with Yang Zing cards. Chao’s second effect to add a Tuner if it gets destroyed is the big part, handing you a way to get Virtual World Roshi – Laolao! Not only that, it gives the deck a bigger ceiling and a way to play through some weaker hands. Gossip + VFD is pretty sweet!

Foolish Burial Goods becomes even better and the deck gets a decent amount of extra push, but it does turn off Chuche due to not having enough ammo.

This is where something like Vermillion Dragon Mech can shine greatly if you already had a way to dump Laolao. Route for early Bamboozling Gossip Shadow, use VDM to banish Laolao pop itself and add back Laolao. You’d be able to end on Calamities, Gossip, and Chuche! What a steal!

All in all, these two nice level 9 Synchros go hand in hand in Virtual World’s ED, no questions asked.

Drying the Trons!

Drytrons are currently on the trend map! Their adaptability, consistency, and grind are just a few of the reasons that make them strong in today’s format.

Jesse Kotton’s build is what truly stuck out, its ability to stick a low commitment “I win” button in the form of Ruler, paired up with Herald of Mirage Lights. These two formed a combination that muscled past most decks. Conventional ways to out the board weren’t uncommon, but they then had to deal with the monsters in hand.

Benten’s searches go a long way, grabbing cards like Artifact Lancea, Herald of the Orange Light, and even Eva! The latter is key as when sent to the GY, gives you another round of Heralds to work with. Green and Purple come to mind.

Since people are catching on to Vanity’s Ruler, the deck can also shift to other plays. Both Amorphactor and Megalith combos have some potential if wielded properly.

Amorphactor allows for safe setups, as it blanks both MP1 and opponent’s BP, getting around some Ruler outs.

Megaliths are explosive and can make crazy setups with Bethor and Phul!

Dragoon Package and Triple Tactics Talent are interesting choices, offering a lot more kick.

JebusMcAzn discussed this more in-depth in his FCG video about Drytron moving forward, so feel free to check that out!

Drytron Beta Rastaban also isn’t a terrible 1-of to try out as banishing Drys in GY is starting to be a lot common. Increased usage and trends of Huaquero, Cycle Reader, D.D. Crow and even Naelshaddoll Ariel are deadly if not respected.

Lastly, Sauravis is worth looking into when Infinite Impermanence returns to play, beating the likes of Chuche and Qinglong. It also makes Union Carrier and Vanity’s Ruler a little bit safer, which is always a plus.

Hand Traps and the Future

Hand traps are in an interesting spot right now, in terms of trends, with people favoring stuff that heavily hit Eldlich variants, Drytron, and Virtual World. These include Cycle Reader, Droll, Lancea, and so on. This means you can capitalize on that fact and get away with strategies like Dragon Link.

However, since the meta is still new, it’s not weird to think that cards such as Impermanence can come back to the meta once more! Currently underrated, this hand trap helps choke VW’s setup by negating Cloudcastle’s effect, stopping them from getting to VFD. In a pinch, it can also help play around Vanity’s Ruler but does need help in breaking past the board. Hitting Union Carrier with it may prove well too!

Ghost Belle is likely a mainstay, as it can stop effects that will always be relevant to the game, a trait that a variety of power cards that something like D.D. Crow or Skull Meister can’t replicate. While those two are a lot better offensively, Belle’s defensive uses are hard to come by.

Nibiru is never something to overlook, so it should come as no surprise that it still manages to hang around and cause people to fear and respect it.


I hope you enjoyed this rundown on what has happened and what to expect in the near future! My personal favorite right now is Drytron, but VW and the other decks are in a position to compete too. Dragoon Trap turbo is a scary sight to deal with, to be honest.

For next year, the release of Blazing Vortex and Ghosts of the Past have a good chance of shaking things up, so keep an eye out on them in 2021!

The TCG exclusives in particular, as we might see some cards that could really stir the pot.

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