• Dragon Ball Z TCG

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    Dragon Ball Z (Panini 2016) CRD v4.6

    The CRD has been updated.

    Changes:
    Unleashed gains “(Banish after use.)” Orange Checkup Drill’s parenthetical text is treated as if it reads “(When this Drill enters play during combat, if it is the first time a card titled “Orange Checkup Drill” has entered play this combat you may search your Life Deck for a Styled “shield icon” card and place it into your hand.)”
    You can check out more information here.

    Voice Cast Revealed for the Official US English Dub of 'Dragon Ball Super'

    LOS ANGELES, CA – November 30, 2016. As Toei Animation Inc. and Funimation® Entertainment ready for the highly-anticipated, dub launch of “Dragon Ball Super”, the acclaimed original English cast is back to embark on the newest adventure in the Dragon Ball saga. Long-time Dragon Ball franchise voice actors reprising their previous roles for Funimation’s English dub production include Seán Schemmel (Goku), Christopher R. Sabat (Vegeta), Jason Douglas (Beerus), Ian Sinclair (Whis) and Sonny Strait (Krillin) – all of whom starred in last year’s hit movie “Dragon Ball Z: Resurrection ‘F’,”which became the 9th highest grossing anime film of all time in U.S.
     
    Reuniting the franchise’s iconic characters, “Dragon Ball Super” follows the aftermath of Goku’s fierce battle with Majin Buu, as he attempts to maintain Earth’s fragile peace. Overseen by Dragon Ball’s original creator, Akira Toriyama, Dragon Ball Super draws on its thirty-year history to create a bold, new universe that is welcoming to fans and endearing to new viewers.
     
    “We are excited to welcome back our many friends and talented newcomers in making ‘Dragon Ball Super’ as special as it can be for fans across the U.S.” said Masayuki Endo, President of Toei Animation Inc. “Funimation has been a fantastic partner in shaping the series for English audiences.”
     
    “We’re thrilled to reunite the original voice cast for our U.S. English dub production of ‘Dragon Ball Super’ with Toei,” said Gen Fukunaga, CEO and founder of Funimation. “Dragon Ball fans – new and old - can look forward to the same great dub experience with ‘Dragon Ball Super’ that they have been enjoying for the past 18 years.”
     
    CHARACTER……………… ACTOR

    GOKU Seán Schemmel
    VEGETA Christopher R. Sabat
    BEERUS Jason Douglas
    WHIS Ian Sinclair
    KRILLIN Sonny Strait
    GOHAN Kyle Hebert
    BULMA Monica Rial
    PICCOLO Christopher R. Sabat
    TRUNKS Alexis Tipton
    NARRATOR Doc Morgan
    GOTEN Kara Edwards
    CHI-CHI Cynthia Cranz
    A18 Meredith McCoy
    MR. SATAN Chris Rager
    BUU Josh Martin
    KING KAI Seán Schemmel
    SHENRON Christopher R. Sabat
    VIDEL Kara Edwards
    YAMCHA Christopher R. Sabat
    TIEN John Burgmeier
    SHOU Chris Cason
    ROSHI Mike McFarland
    PUAR Brina Palencia
    PILAF Chuck Huber
    OX-KING Kyle Hebert
    OOLONG Brad Jackson
    MARRON Tia Ballard
    KIBITO KAI Kent Williams
    ELDER KAI Kent Williams
    DENDE Justin Cook
    CHIAOTZU Brina Palencia
    MAI Colleen Clinkenbeard
     
     
    Subtitled episodes of “Dragon Ball Super” are currently available on FunimationNow as well as Crunchyroll and Daisuki.net along with new simulcast episodes streaming on Saturdays at 8:30 pm ET.
     
    About Toei Animation Inc.
    Based in Los Angeles, Toei Animation Inc. manages the film distribution of Toei’s top properties, including Dragon Ball all series, Sailor Moon, One Piece, Saint Seiya, and many others to North America, Latin America, South Africa, Australia and New Zealand. Toei Animation Los Angeles office further handles all categories of consumer product licensing based on its film and television brands within these territories. For more information, please visit toei-animation-usa.com.
     
    About Funimation Entertainment
    Funimation is the go-to destination for extraordinary anime. By combining its integrated in-house studios along with its technology and distribution partnerships, Funimation leads the industry with its omnichannel approach to offering anime to fans—from streaming and home entertainment, to theatrical distribution and broadcast television. The company’s next generation streaming service, FunimationNow, provides subscribers with instant access to their favorite sub and dub shows in ad-free HD on the widest array of devices and platforms—from smartphones and tablets to TVs and gaming consoles. For more information about Funimation, visit funimation.com.

    Fixing the Meta-Game

    In this article I will address growing concerns about the games current balance. I will include my thoughts on how things could be changed to lead us into a healthier competitive environment. However, the more changes you add to the game the more complicated it becomes for new players. Killing a tier 1 deck is never a good idea if instead you could bring it down a notch. For example, Banning Unleashed would kill Blue/Red Goku. Granted, there would still be Blue and Red Goku lists that may find some success in tournaments, but the deck as we know it would be entirely dead. That type of mentality is not good for the game.

    Why Change Anything?
     
    I'm usually a player that prefers to adapt around tier 1 strategies and I enjoy watching players find unique answers to rising problems that become more and more apparent the longer we delve into a new set's meta-game. However, there does come a time in which things need to be changed to improve the games overall balance. I do think that the tier 1 decks (Orange Roshi, Blue/Red Goku) are too far ahead of every other deck in the game and despite my best efforts the game feels pretty stale. I have been able to build decks that have slightly advantageous match ups against either Orange Roshi or Blue/Red Goku, but I have yet to be able to build a deck that has a decent match up against both. I find myself sacrificing too many match ups just to give myself a fighting chance. This will never lead to a successful tournament winning strategy.
     
    Identifying the Problem:
     
    Orange Roshi is an MPPV deck that has insane anger gain on levels 1 and 2. It has the ability to loop defensive options at will and the ability to blow up Wall Breakers with very little effort. The deck plays in an unfair way by creating actions that are on par with Ginyu all while furthering its goal of MPPV. The drills it has access to represent a toolbox on par with the best toolbox in Panini DBZ history. MPPV isn't a problem in this meta-game. Red Vegeta, Orange Trunks, and Saiyan Gohan are all excellent at MPPV and on paper they all look faster than Roshi. However, Roshi's synergy with the Orange Retribution Mastery along with the latest in Orange Drills creates a completely one dimensional hyper efficient MPPV machine.
     
    Blue/Red Goku can win the game on turn 1 if you draw Unleashed and your opponent can't interact with you. It gets to level 4 Goku by turn 4 90% of its games. Once on level 4 it can find any answer it needs to any problem it may face. Blue and Red provide an excellent source of anti anger to keep MPPV decks at bay as well. Unleashed isn't the problem though and neither is Goku level 4. Remember Broly level 4 is absolutely nuts and Saiyan Empowered Broly (while being tier 1) was never a problem in the previous meta-game. Goku, both Red and Blue, doesn't even have access to the Saiyan Empowered Mastery for quick leveling assistance. Kaio-Ken and Unleashed are really all you need.
     
    Solution:
     
    Orange Investigation Drill gains "Villains Only."
     
    Suddenly Orange Roshi's ability to get rid of Wall Breaker goes out the window. However, the deck doesn't die. Three Focused Assaults could easily come in to keep the deck highly competitive. Also, anti-anger effects like Blue Head Knock will finally be effective against Orange Roshi. Finally, cards that are supposed to be good against MPPV will be good again.
     
    Goku, Determined - "POWER: Draw the styled card closest to the bottom of your discard pile..."
     
    Goku, Courageous - "Physical Attack. AT +2 life cards of damage. Draw the styled card closest to the top or bottom of your discard pile."
     
    This change would leave every non-Goku Unleashed deck untouched. Furthermore, it would allow Goku to still play the way that he wants to, just at a slower pace. It prevents the first turn draw Unleashed or Kaio-Ken and win the game. It allows for your opponent to have more time to find an answer to the problem cards that Goku has. 6 problem cards can be hard to deal with when it only takes 1 to get to level 4. Now it will truly take 3 cards for Goku to obtain his goal. I think this is how Goku should have been designed to begin with and these changes fit in perfectly with his level 4's ability to only interact with styled cards. This also takes away Goku level 3's broken interaction with Time is a Warrior's Tool. Unleashed wouldn't have to be errata'd and Goku can still be played how he is currently being played, but in a more fair way.
     
    In conclusion, I'm just asking for three small changes and this entire meta-game would open up. I really hope that we see something soon. Even though it's the off season we need a balanced game and I hope that Panini's listening.

    Grading a DBZ Player - Yourself!

    What makes a great DBZ player???? Justin goes over ten questions to ask yourself!

    Recently on Retro, I was in a topic discussing the current state of the game. Well, at some point I decided that I would actually "grade" my group of locals. It came off as kind of harsh, but it is what it is. I wasn't trying to be mean, on the contrary I like them all (and consider most to be friends) enough to be honest with them about how I feel they rate as players in the game. I even did a little bit of retrospective and realized that even I fall short sometimes in what I truly believe makes a great DBZ player.
     
    I have seen players in this game (and many other games) exhibit these qualities.Tim Batow and Phil McGrath come to mind. I have even seen a player grow exponetially within a year to become a world champion and see the difference a year of focus can do to one's play (Sundeep came ALONG way from the days last year when he came out to Vegas and got his booty kicked by our crew, man you are one of the game's best. Seriously, congrats on your championship title!)
     
    Ask yourself the following questions and be honest with yourself!
     
    Do You:
     
    1. Have the ability to make plays to gain an advantage over your opponent.
     
    Every move, every action, every thought, must be to: gain an advantage, remove a disadvantage, or at the least, maintain your position. Every attack or block you make, every planning card you play, every combat you enter or get declared on: - you should be looking for a way to gain an advantage over your opponent. Just because you CAN do something, doesn't mean it's the right way of doing something. Focus and examine your game. One thing I ALWAYS tell new players who want to be competitive : Understand your win and losses. Write them down if you have to. If at all possible, play on camera and learn your mistakes.
     
    2. KNOW Your deck???
     
    An IMMEDIATE sign of a new or weak player is whether they know the cards contained in their 65 card deck. Do they know their own MP/Mastery? The events, allies, setups, drills, defense and attacks in their deck? Their Endurance? Do you even know how many copies of a card are currently included in your deck. Study your deck. Are there complex timings and interactions that you should be aware of? Even if you didn't playtest the deck the night before and you JUST built it, you should memorize it down to EVERY SINGLE CARD. (Really you should have playtested a general idea of the deck, taking something you are entirely uncomfortable with is a recipe for disaster). Even if you NETDECKED, know your deck! In some games, it will come down to specific outs and you should know your outs. If you happen to luck into a win, it's not skill but luck. Don't be lucky, as my friend Matthew Coombs likes to say "Git Gud" about you deck.
     
    3. Play Thoughtful or Just Through the Motions
     
    Yes, we have 40 minute rounds. But for the love of god, slow down! This is a game of thought, draws and concentration. Believe it or not, most players lose a game based on if they took too much time or too little time to make a decision. Should you really be entering this combat? What cards stop you from winning? Are you thinking about what they could be holding based on the discard step? If you rush a play, you're are going to miss something. If you overthink - you are going to miss something. If you know the cards, and interactions inside-out, you won't worry about going to time and you will give yourself an edge to think about combat sequencing, possible deck inclusions and outs.
     
    4. Have Confidence in your Abilities?
     
    It is better to be confidently wrong than hesitantly right. This also means, trust your instincts and don't second guess yourself. Confidence is a hard trait to gain, it comes with knowlege and experience. Don't let a last round defeat bolster your entire tournament! Don't let a player you've lost to countless times discourage you from playing to win it! Make ths game count. As my friend Rich Bondi says "Play this game like it is the most important game of your life!"
     
    5. Know and Undertstand the Game
     
    Understand the rules and know how the mechanics of the game move and act. You don't need to memorize the rules such that you can quote rules sections, but you should read the CRD, familarize yourself with card interactions and even the DBZ TCG Wiki. There is simply no excuse for misplays due to mistakes in how the rules work. When it comes to competitive play, card interactions and ability timings are all the more important.
     
    Check out all of the information here: https://paniniamericadbz.wordpress.com/tournament-documents/
     
    and the Wiki:
    http://dragonballztcg.wikia.com/wiki/DragonBallZTCG_Wiki
     
    6. Play the Game to Win???
     
    The greatest players of any game or sport play to win. They can be some of the nicest people you will ever meet, but when the game is on, it is ON. They will be going for the kill shot and attempt to Kamehameha your ass until every part of you is slowly disinigrated. Don't be nice. Win the game. You can't allow takebacks when the game and your title is on the line, and expect the same from your opponent. Winning isn't everythng, but if you are participating in a major tournament, your goal should be to WIN!
     
    7. Network with Other Players and the Community?
     
    Find a group to play with, to talk with, theorycraft with and playtest with. Find multiple playgroups. Talk to the community. Talk to World Champions and Regional Winners. Talk to this year's Super Elite. Just communicate! This is a major part of awakening your potential in this game. Don't have a local playgroup? Playtest and get games in on OCTGN. Not only does networking make you become a better player and see choices or understand thoughts from other players, you even get a chance to build new friendships! I owe a lot of my success this year in part because I opened up to other players and different ideas. Even your local, instead of treating it as a competition, treat it as an opportunity to truly learn from each other. The internet should be a place to flourish as players, not to demean or demoralize.
     
    8. Play as much DBZ as POSSIBLE?
     
    You can never play enough. Practice, practice, practice. If you're not practicing every day, somewhere someone is, and when they meet you, they will beat you. That is a true fact for anything you wish to accomplish, whether it's sales, networking, education or marketing. That is a major point for Z too. You can't be casual and make it to Worlds and score that invite.
     
    At the same time, the game shouldn't interfere with life. Don't do it during classes, work or instead of being social with friends. However, you can't expect to win tournaments regularly without making it a priority on some level.
     
    9.Take Breaks from DBZ ?
    And as a counter to the previous point, you also need to take breaks. This is a TCG based on a 30 year old anime from Japan. Burnout is killer and unfortunately it will hit when you are going through the most stress, either leading up to a major event or during one. So be sure to take nights and just go out with friends and watch movies, dance, be social, fuck your girl (or guy) etc. - let your brain escape the game for a while.
     
    The brain is a muscle. And the more you work it the stronger it gets. But like any muscle, it can be overworked and it will begin to become counter productive to work it, this is when the times of rest become extremely important. Let it rest. Let your subconscious take over for a while and let your conscious rest. Have you ever over-thought out a deck for a tournament? Have you gotten tired of the current meta? Then it's tme to take a break.
     
    10. Continuously Learn?
     
    We're blessed to have this game during the age of the Internet. With Retro, DBZ Top Tier and other sites, knowlege of the game is just a few clicks away. The moment you stop thinking you can learn, or begin to believe that you are too good, you'll come crashing down. Read strategy articles, look at decklists, consider different options. Be open minded! Also, be humble about your progression as a player. Go into every game with the thought that every player is better than you. Stay focused and LEARN.
     
    I really hope that this article ignites your excitment for the game. If it does, let me know. I would love to hear about it!
     
    Justin

    LCQ + Worlds. 5th place Tourney Report

    Zero (Tim Palacios) talks about his grueling run through the LCQ, getting his invite then making it to day 2 of Worlds!

    I'd like to start by giving my thanks to Russ and Lance from FPG for testing with me, giving me deck ideas, and having an awesome place to play. Sam for loaning me a sphere and an unleashed, Caba for loaning me the 2 AK's, and Drew for loaning me the 2 Flurry of Blows (which were amazing), and my gf Rosa for going and supporting me as I played. Also to all the countless others that I've playtested with and gave me their input on card choices. Couldn't have done so well without all of you.
     
    Deck Construction:
    Ever since Goku was previewed with the Resolute mastery, I knew this was going to be the deck that I wanted to play. I picked it up and built it the day of release and was just blown away by how well it performed. So I decided to take this deck to the LCQ and try my luck with it. It didn't seem to have any real bad match-ups, and at worst it seemed to be like a 50-50 against some. I didn't get any testing against the mirror but I figured it would all come down to unleashed wars. A little bit of tweaking the list and it was off to Texas.
     
    My list can be found here:
    https://paniniamericadbz.files.wordpress.com/2016/11/worlds-t8.pdf
    My list is the Blue Resolute Goku under the name of Tim Palacios.
     
    LCQ vs Worlds Changes:
     
    LCQ -
    + 2 Energized Strikes (for the Roshi match-up) (Took these out for Shoulder Slam... Funny story with this later)
    +1 Blue Shifting Maneuver (Took this out for Blue Leverage)
    +2 Blue Patience (Took both these out for 2 more Blue Leverage)
     
    Last Chance Qualifier:
    Started the event by going downstairs to the hall at around 9 am and waiting outside the doors to get registered. Talked with a few familiar faces and eventually got registered. I was rather nervous since i went all the way there without an invite to worlds and didn't want to have traveled all the way for nothing. Soon enough though, pairings went up and Round 1 began.
     
    Round 1: Me Vs No Opponent. (1-0)
    So we ended up having 149 people at this LCQ with a cap of 150 people and somehow I was the lucky guy that got a round 1 bye. So I walked around and watched my gf play.
     
    Round 2: Me vs Orange Retribution Gohan (2-0)
    This game was quite something. He did an excellent job of re-using check up drill and keeping blocks in his hand. I had a slow start but eventually worked my way up to level 3. I didn't make it up to 4 this game but my opponent did. He was an anger build that had a side victory condition of survival. It came down to 1 combat where he was lvl 4 with 3 anger and he had 3 cards left. I had him under dig and it was my action. He had already used mastery and he was all out of blocks ( i knew because I had verified his life deck from a search prior, but i had forgotten). I had an attack but instead of throwing it I decided to pass and he passed as well for game. That decision took me quite some time to make but it was the right call. Super close match.
     
    Round 3: Me vs Blue Resolute Goku (Mirror) (3-0)
    I really need to apologize here because I played against one of the Australian folks that traveled for the LCQ and worlds but I didn't catch his name and I feel bad about it. He was really really nice though, polite and a solid player. He did all he could but I just opened really solid and took the game from him before he really got a chance. It wasn't super quick, but I did shut him down with a blue slide and went off with my own unleashed combo's.
     
    Round 4: Me vs Red Ruthless Goku (4-0)
    This was another game that I controlled really well. Not much he could do about it when hes throwing physicals and I have the right blocks at the right times along with unleashed and Kaio-ken's. I kept him down and just got to lvl 4 really quick and stole the game.
     
    Round 5: Me vs Blue Resolute Goku (Mirror) (I believe I played Scott Dashy here) (5-0)
    I sat down to looking across the table at another mirror match, which I knew would be tough but I was ok with it. We rolled and I forget who got to go first but it really doesn't matter because neither one of us entered for the first 8-10 draws. We just kept drawing and passing until we both had about 20 cards in the discard pile. He had a visiting out so I was very cautious to enter. He kept discarding things like sphere, time, confrontation, so I knew he had something really powerful in hand. I got a hand of Blue slide, unleashed, blue guard, and I forget the rest, possibly a sphere. So i decided to enter.
    He popped his visit, grabbed a sphere, and drew his 4. I opened with blue slide and it hit, which was a huge sigh of relief for me. He didn't do too much this combat. Masteried once, and mostly passed, watching me play. I did my unleashed things, got to level 4 this combat, and i eventually played a confrontation. He placed his hand down and I realized what I had done with that combat and that blue slide. It honestly wasn't even fair. He had 4 cards in hand and they were Sphere, Sphere, Sphere, and Ball 4. This game was over in one combat and blue slide was the simple fact of why I won. If I ever get a chance to meet up with him again, I hope we have the chance to play another game cause i"m sure he's a hell of a player but I just happened to shut off his entire game with 1 attack.
     
    Round 6: Me vs Adept Gohan (Dylan Quern) (5-1)
    I was kinda surprised sitting down and seeing an Adept mastery across from me at round 6. I wasn't sure if he was an enegry build or a physical build so I was really cautious at first. I didn't get the best draws but I played with what I could. We had quite a few combats and it was a long game. We were one of the last playing. He hit me with a Gohan's Power Punch, went up to level 3 and then back down to level 2 at the end of combat. I was able to get up to level 3 but he was doing an amazing job of recycling his check up drill and keeping blocks in his hand. In one combat that I entered, he ran out of actions and the last thing that I did was place time on top of my deck with blue blanketing blast.
    He then entered on me and I had Blue patience in my hand, time, and an attack or 2. He used a shoulder slam on me, with him being level 4 with max stages. It was coming in for 12 stages of damage and I was only 2 above 0. I sat for a minute thinking to use patience or time, and I made the huge mistake of using time on the attack, only to find out that it will not stop his attack since it doesnt qualify as a physical block and the floating effect doesn't work either. So i ate a huge chunk of my remaining life and ended up losing to survival. Really solid game though.
     
    Round 7: Me vs Resolute Goku (Mirror)(Cory Aguilard) (5-2)
    Wish I could say this match went as well as all my other mirrors but that wasn't even close to the case. This time I was on the receiving end of Goku. He litereally had every answer to everything that I tried from spheres, confrontations, to unleashing and kaio-kens. It was a slaughter. He got to level 4 and kept me down on level 1 the entire game. Unfortunately, he didnt make it into worlds since he lost in top 8 but he did go on to win the Arg event and got the 1st invite to next years worlds. Really happy for him. He was a solid player, not making any mistakes and deserves to be at worlds. Congrats!
     
    Round 8: Me vs Blue Resolute Tao (Peter Ouimette) (6-2)
    This match-up was probably one of the most interesting matches of the day for me. He did all kinds of crazy things from ending combat to unleashing up in levels. I was quite impressed with it. One of our first combats, I entered on him with a sphere, Terror, Neck beam, crouch, and blue guard. I used my mastery and drew 2, which I think I got a Rejection, which i threw next, and he tried to puzzle it and end combat, but i sphered it. He ended up having a terror on top of his discard at one point in this combat and he threw a blue slash next for 2 life which if it hit then would mill me for 6. If i blocked it then he would rejuv terror, which I didn't want him to do and I had almost my full deck still so I decided to take it. Of the 6, I ended up milling 2 unleashed, which wasn't good for me at all. So I then decided to throw my Terror and grab the last unleashed from my deck before it got destroyed. He then used his Tao power to shuffle a card from his hand and draw a card. I decided to play unleashed now and he played the card he drew... sphere..... lol.
    It was at this point that I realized I was going to be stuck on level 1 the entire game and I had to beat him to make it into top 16. So i kept the pressure on and just kept throwing attacks each combat. He eventually got up to level 2 with an unleashed but I just kept throwing slides for 10 life and rejections for 8, which he didn't seem to be getting any blocks. I ended up winning by survival quite decisively.
     
    Top Cut:
    I was a bit worried at this point on if I would make it into the top 16 or not due to that Round 1 bye that I got, but I was hopeful since I had some really solid Tie breakers. Luckily, it worked out and I made it into top cut.
     
    Top 16: Me vs Mathew Crawford (Orange Retribution Goku)
    I really didn't know what to expect from this deck since I hadn't been watching him play nor had I heard anything about it. All i could figure was that he was going to be doing Check-up shenanigans, so I played aggressively and tried to power through all his blocks. I was able to unleashed up a few levels and keep his anger down for the most part, in keeping him on level 1 for most of the game. I had a really solid combat and pretty much took the game with me getting to level 4. This game wasn't quick though and we had some pretty long combats.
     
    Top 8: Me vs Dylan Quern (Adept Gohan Rematch)
    Not gunna lie, I was really excited about this match up for the fact that I could have a rematch with him. Our game in round 6 was rather close so I knew that this game was winnable. And I wouldn't be making the same mistake with Time again. We were also on stream so it makes my tournament report easier. Not to spoil anything, but in the simplest terms I can put it, it was basically a slaughter. There was only 1 real combat between us in which he ran out of gas, and I unleashed from 1 to level 4, all the while he was under Dig and just kept flipping life into his discard. I wasn't happy that I had to be the person to end his tournament season, especially with such a cool deck idea that was obviously successful since he said he played 9 Gokus that day, but I was super excited that after all that, I had earned my place into worlds.
    Here's the stream if you'd like to watch.


    Game starts @ 7 hours 47 minutes. 
    Worlds Day 1:
    I made a few key changes to the deck in the morning and rushed down to turn in my deck list at 9:30 am. After i turned in my deck list, i realized that I made a huge mistake in my deck. My list was correct with what was in my deck, but I had meant to put in Android Arm Breakers in the deck instead of Shoulder Slams.... wooops....... After I realized this, I thought I was at a huge disadvantage for the entire tournament and I was seriously mad at myself. Oh well.... on to round 1 lol.
     
    Round 1: Me vs Pat Eshghy (Retribution Trunks) (1-0)
    I wasn't too happy with having to play against an anger deck right off the bat, since I feel like it's one of my harder match-ups, but I wasn't too disappointed with it either. We roll the dice and I'm pretty sure I won the roll. He goes to get his drill and we start. I get a fairly slow start and pass. He gets a few drills / set-ups and a couple things going for himself and when we finally do enter, he gets to level 2 and then 3. He was on level 4 with half his life deck left and I managed to get to lvl 4 as well.
    I tried throwing neck beams to lower him down but he was a really smart player and none of them ever hit. I had a lot of ground to cover but the digs came in handy and I was able to deck him out before he could finish angering out. Had me extremely worried though.
     
    Round 2: Me vs Tommy Dilena (4th place) (Resolute Goku) (2-0)
    He won the die roll and went first. Drew his 3... and entered.. wonderful. So i draw my 3 + goku 1 and we go at it. 1st turn unleashed. Awesome. I check out my hand and I have unleashed, blanketing blast, and a few other things. So hes on 2 with the set up. I decide to throw blanketing blast and it hits. I banish his unleashed + a kaio-ken and a time i think. He used goku 2 i think and i play unleashed to drop him back down and he gets terror with his rebuke. I use my mastery with a guard i think and draw 2 and he terrors for a sphere. He tried to throw an Ak during this game but I had a flurry of blows and he had to banish the top 3 of his deck. I ended up getting to level 4 while keeping him on lvl 1. The blanketing blast basically won me the game.
     
    Round 3: Me vs RR Goku (forget who I played and im sorry) (3-0)
    I dont remember too much about this game but I know that I was able to control the whole match and not take too much damage form any of his attacks. I kept him down on level 1 and 2 the entire game while I was able to get up to level 4 and I had plenty of blocks for all of his attacks. At one point he entered combat at on me and I had 2 couch's + 2 leverage and an Arm Blast. Nothing got through.
     
    Round 4: Me vs Justin McBride (Resolute Goku mirror) (4-0)
    This was a fun game. Honestly one of the funnest I had all weekend. Not for the fact that it was dominated by either of us, cause it wasn't, but because of the plays we had. He went first, entered with an unleashed, in which i was able to use blue slide to get rid of it and then I hit him with a neck beam, and back down to 1 he went. Then i drew and entered, unleashed, and by the end of combat he hit me with a neck beam and back down to 1 I went. There was a couple AK's thrown back and forth, which I think I may have used a Flurry on one, cant recall, but at some point in the game I took over and advanced in levels too far for him to make up. Just the fact we had a few combats and kept bouncing levels made it quite fun. And as always, he was an awesome opponent and a few laughs were exchanged, regardless of the high stakes of the game.
     
    Round 5: Me vs Nick Toth (2nd place overall) (Red Ruthless Goku) (5-0)
    Not much I can say about this game. It was on stream so you can check it out there as well, which I'll link in a second. There were a few misplays in this game that were rather minor and luckily didnt have too big of an impact in the game.
    Basically we had 3 combats, the first of which I had Nick under dig, and he used endurance when he wasnt supposed to and neither of us, nor the judge, caught it until a few actions later when it changed the gamestate. Since there wasnt much that could be done, I just suggested we let it go and continue, all the while when I said this, Nick took 6 from a Neck Beam but quickly moved on to his next action, and overlooked my crit, which left him at 2 anger.
    The 2nd combat he was able to lower his anger (that I had not gotten to crit) and prevented me from using non-styled cards.
    The 3rd combat I was able to take off with a double confrontation, blue guard combo, and was able to get my dig from the bottom of my discard, to basically get to level 4, keep him under dig with no attacks and basically only 2 blocks, and I stole the game that combat, with him only having 4-5 cards at the end of the turn.
     

     
    Round 6: Mitchel Janoweic (6th place overall) (Orange Ret Roshi) (6-0)
    Sitting down opposite of Mitchel, we both had huge grins on our faces because we both knew that regardless of who won, we were both guaranteed into top cut and so we were just playing for seeding spots. We shook eachothers hands, gave eachother a congratulations, and started our game. I got to go first and had a fairly slow start, and not wanting to enter on Roshi too hastily.
    We had a simple combat where i did a decent amount of damage to him but he did what roshi does best and sped right up to lvl 3 really quickly. He then started building his board as I kept hesitating to enter on him. He had 2 slumbers out, a visit, the set up that raises anger 1 and looks for a drill + looks for a drill if youve leveled, and other rshi shenanigans, Even at staring at all this, I decided to enter with a hand of Confrontation, Sphere, smug punch, and Smug punch, and I was level 3. He used his slumber, placed his cards back, Visited for a sphere, and drew his 3. I played confrontation, which he sphered, and I sphered back, and then i sent something back, which i dont recall what it was. He did his things and basically what it came down to was I used gokus power for 11, crit his anger, with him getting to level 4, and I smug punched both times for crit damage and the last one killed him for exact life. He was level 4 with 3 anger and his next action was to use his mastery for game of MPPV. Was super close and I barely squeaked that one out.
     
    It was at this point that it hit me... I went from not having an invite on friday, to being undefeated, 6-0, and 1st seed at worlds..... It was like a dream come true. We went out and celebrated at the Hard Eight BBQ, then went back to the room and tested against some of the other top 8 decks since Panini was nice enough to release all the deck lists that night.
    We built Sundeeps Roshi list and tested. Jake, Kelly, and Sam piloted the decks as I tried to beat em. I didnt seem to have any trouble with it, although I'm sure he would have piloted it quite differently than any of us. And I tested against the Red Vegeta match, which seemed to be a 50-50 at best for me. Sleep and off to Day 2!
     
    Worlds: Top 8, Day 2
     
    Top 8: Me vs Tommy Dilena (Rematch of my round 2, Resolute Goku)
    I already knew this was my match up the previous day, but I cant say I was looking forward to it. I was really hoping that being best 2/3 and me going first would give me the edge I needed to win the mirror match, cause the way I figured it, this was going to be the hardest match I would have in top cut.
    Game 1:
    I go first and draw absolute garbage. I place slide at the bottom of the discard and pass. He draws and passes, placing a Guard on the bottom. I draw my 3 and pass again, nothing good. He draws his 3 and enters. So i pick up my 4 for drawing and i get.... Crouch, Narrow Escape, Neck beam, Blanketing Blasts, and Rebuke..... wonderful. He opens with Unleashed, gets Rebuke, goes to 2. Now im staring at him getting guard back from the discard, to mastery, to draw 2, and then having unleashed at the bottom. I had studied his deck list so I knew he didnt have many blocks at all. So I decide to throw the blanketing blast. It hit for 7. Of the 7, he used 2 cards for 3 endurance, so only 2 others his the discard. So now i have to banish 3 and leave whichever one in there for him to get. My choices from bottom to top....... Guard, Unleashed, Time, and Kaio-ken........... I dont think he could have planned that any better if he had gotten to chose the cards himself that were put in the discard.
    I take quite a few minutes to decide on my play and i decided the best thing to do was give him time back, so I banish the other 3. He uses his power to get time, and I use my mastery, getting junk. He then proceeds to use Kaio-ken......going to level 3. Mmmmmk.
    Now I know he has Time in his hand, Kaio-Ken in on top of his discard, and he'll get it back next action. So i do the only thing that I can and I throw Neck Beam, knowing it wont hit. Which he uses TIme and gets it back with his lvl 3 power. This game is over from there.
    (0-1)
     
    Game 2:
    Not looking good for me here. I go first and this game is rather close. Tbh I dont recall too much about it except that I got to lvl 4 and kept him on lvl 1-2 the entire game. That may not seem that close but our life decks said otherwise. He got me down to about 15 left, so for being level 1 and 2 the entire game, he did extremely well.
    (1-1)
     
    Game 3: For all the Marbles
    This game was absolutely Nuts. It went back and forth with level jumping and damage and just attack after attack from both of us. At one point I was level 2 with Confrontation, Sphere, Guard, and Unleashed in hand. He had a visit out with a sphere in the discard. We had both been passing for quite a few turns and I kept seeing him discard Spheres, confrontations, and Time, so I knew his had was loaded with something. He used his visit to grab a sphere, and drew his 4. I played confrontation, which he sphered, so I sphered it back, and he Sphered my sphere..... wow. So he rejuvd 2. He used his mastery next I think and I masteried also, ditching my guard to draw a Kaio-ken and 1 other card. He threw an attack I think and I played my Kaio-ken first, which he Sphered....... again.... 3 spheres?? lol Ok. I got my unleashed off and went to 3. Fairly certain he unleashed here and attached Rebuke. He then said he was going to advance a level and then lower me down, which is where i said well when you advance im going to use rebuke to grab a card. He then seemed to realize he wouldnt get his rebuke search and asked about it and asked if he could switch it out for a smug punch, which he wasnt allowed to do. Turns out though that it wasnt a big deal, because he ended up winning the unleashed war overall, and kept me down on lvl 1 after that, with him getting to level 3. I tried to do what I could but I just couldnt do enough damage. After 2 hours worth of games, he entered on me for the last combat in which I drew 3 narrow escapes. I got him to 6 life cards left but I just didnt have enough damage. Was a good game overall. .
     
    (1-2) Finished Top 5.
    Overall Record, LCQ + Worlds (not including top 8): 14-2
     
    I had an amazing time this entire season. From the regionals in Oregon, San Gabriel CA, Vacaville CA, and Las Vegas (Top 4), that I went to, and all the way through Worlds. I met some amazing players that helped me grow exponentially in this game this season. I couldn't have gotten as far as I did without having played all those games through every event, so I really owe that to our entire community. This is by far the best group of players, as both competitive players, and just as decent human beings, that I've ever experienced. I really do hope that next season I get to meet up with all of you that I had the pleasure of meeting, talking to, and playing with again because above all else, it's the memories and stories that make this game worth while. 'Till next time my friends.

    Understanding Goku - A Look at My World's Testing

    Justin shares his play testing thoughts that ultimately led to his deck decision for worlds.

    Hey everybody! Just got back from the DBZ World championship and I had an absolute blast! While I finished 22nd place, I never once thought my deck was out of contention and a lot of my games could have gone either way.
     
    I thought I would take some time to discuss a very important topic in the DBZ meta at the moment: Goku. Now, I know what you are saying "Justin, you can't beat Goku, he just draws all the cards, unleashes to level 4 and draws the nuts on you, every single game." Well with that attitude, of course he is going to beat you! While card advantage is king in this game (and Goku does that VERY well) it is still possible to consistently build a deck built around beating Goku (and still be competitive against other decks.) Orange Retribution Roshi is a fantastic example of a deck that can deal with Goku on a consistent basis.
     
    First we will be dicussing what makes Goku so powerful (that way we can see the holes in his strategy to exploit). Oddly enough, this ties very much into my playtesting journey going into worlds because Goku was focus #1.
     
    How Goku Works
     
    Before we start delving into ways to beat Goku's smug face in, I need to explain how he works and how he beats you to the ground. Goku draws cards and as he levels, he is attempting to out action and out tempo you. The instant he levels, he gains more actions (which net him more cards.) While a lot has changed since the full release of Awakening (and Worlds happened as well!) I will be showing off a lot of what I wrote out in a private group explaining how to make optimal Goku builds.
     
    This is going to be awesome! Goku is disgusting! Hopefully we get a little more anti-Goku this set than Vegeta level 1 and Final Flash otherwise Goku is going to be everywhere. This is going to be a long write up, but hopefully this helps your Worlds testing (and hopefully I get there too!)
     
    Blue Resolute Mastery
    Goku - Training
    Goku - Determined
    Goku - Courageous
    Goku - Selfless
    Allies: (3)
    1x Chi-Chi
    1x Oolong
    1x Mr. Popo
    Drills: (1)
    1x Blue Lifting Drill
    Events: (15)
    3x Unleashed
    3x Goku's Kaioken
    1x Goku's Search
    2x Heroic Energy Sphere
    2x Blue Shifting Maneuver
    1x Overwhelming Power
    2x Enhanced Reflexes
    1x Time is a Warrior's Tool
    Energy Combats: (23)
    3x Blue Narrow Escape
    3x Blue Guard
    3x Quick Blast
    3x Assisted Kamehameha
    1x Overpowering Attack
    1x Blue Terror
    3x Blue Neck Beam
    2x Blue Clash
    3x Blue Blanketing Blast
    2x Blue Arm Blast
    Physical Combats: (16)
    3x Blue Leverage
    3x Blue Head Knock
    3x Blue Head Kick
    2x Blue Slide
    3x Blue Betrayal
    2x Blue Decapitation
    2x I'll Dig Your Grave!
    The idea of the deck is to try and hop levels utilizing Goku's Kaioken, Unleashed and I'll Dig Your Grave! to draw more cards, filter draws and try to achieve a "kill turn". The idea of the deck would be to race to level 3 or 4. Unleashed can bring you back to lower levels as well to allow the deck to gain more gas during combat as well. This MP set looks A LOT like the Goku MP set I used for my Infinite Goku Tuff Enuff deck for worlds 2003. It draws a lot of cards. The level 3 and 4 are INSANE compared to the originals!
     
    The deck contains a small ally package: Oolong to stop the powers of Dragon Balls (help against Namek Ball 2) Mr. Popo (to help against decks that rejuvenate mass cards like Cooler or Namekian, as well as card draw) and Chi-Chi for physical beats.
    The block package consists of Blue Narrow Escape (pairs nicely with the mastery) to help draw key energy combats and Blue Guard to draw more cards . On level 1, it would be entirely possible to go through 6 cards with a single Blue Guard which enables the deck to combo faster. Blue Leverage helps dig for more cards and on level 3 or higher is more key card advantage.
     
    The deck's attack package includes Assisted Kamehameha for unstoppable, unpreventable damage which could provide crits. Blue Blanketing Blasts can setup some crazy plays as it stacks your deck for any card, which can be drawn with the mastery. The physical beats package is mostly life card based to help solidify attacks going through and dealing damage quickly. Blue Head Knock for some anger control. Blue Head Kick helps the deck dig even further looking for more cards, and can assist as another way to draw deliberately placed cards from Blue Blanketing Blast.
     
    Interestingly enough Goku can probably utilize a lot of single one-ofs in his builds JUST BECAUSE his 4 can tutor for anything from any zone (which is way more powerful than Cell).
     
    Speaking of Cell, the Saiyan Empowered Cell deck Phil used in Chicago (as opposed to my Chicago top 16 list) could be a good baseline to making a Saiyan Rampaging Goku deck. Goku's Search grabs Dragon Balls which means it could be double victory by adding in the remainder of the DBS. Then Goku can just grab Empowered Beams and use DB powers a bunch of times! Maybe the new Saiyan mastery will draw a card (which would be insane! If that's the case forget Saiyan Goku Ball, go full out beat down mode with 6 to 7 card hands!)
     
    Blue Defensive Effect could shut down MPPV decks (which unless they print a new mastery that gains a ton of anger, probably not needed though the new Orange might be able to MPPV consistently since Orange has a lot of raise 2 anger cards) Blue Wash could even be used to be anti-ally if these Ginyu decks still stick around after the meta change. I still think Cooler and Broly will have a place in the meta and with that frozen list the only 13 surviving might be Tag Team and even then that wasn't that great. Black Cooler can still be good even if they freeze Devious (as long as Command doesn't get touched). Orange Retribution Cooler could be really good as well to threaten MPPV (Forget Command, now I have a 2 anger action every turn!)
     
    Cards to test from current releases: Blue Dominance (Allows you to start a chain back to level 2, or allows you to advance to 2 basically netting 2 cards, probably not needed though), Blue Ki Ball (Helps clean up weak draws, probably not needed). Stomach Crusher (Keeps you in combat to ensure a kill turn with your big hand.). Yajirobe Ally (Setup disruption). Focused Assualt (Helps break Android Arm Breaker/Wall Breakers). Blue Slash ( with Mastery and Modifiers it can eat up anywhere between 9-10 cards a turn on one attack). Android Arm Breaker (To help break mirror matches).
     
    Now, here is why I think Goku is nuts:
     
    Example Sequence (add one to totals if you held a card the previous turn.)
    First turn enter with Unleashed example:
    Enter = 4 cards.
    Unleashed to level 2. = 3 cards.
    Goku power for Unleashed = 4 cards.
    Unleashed to level 3. = 3 cards
    Level 3 power = grab unleashed. 4 cards + attack. (4 life cards)
    Unleashed to 4. = 3 cards.
    Goku's Level 4 power. Blue Terror = 4 cards.
    Blue Terror into Blue Guard (9 life) = 4 cards.
    Mastery Blue Guard = 5 cards.
    Goku's Level 2 power and the mastery are great ways to sink Blue Guards to increase your hand size by two.
    Yes, this is Magical Christmasland. However, I think with Goku's power, and the amount of potential leveling I think it will be consistent enough.
    If you can't finish an opponent off with a large combat, the remainder of the game can be spent using Goku's level 4 power always grabbing Blue Terror into other cards you may need. Blue Terror into Assisted Kamehameha is a powerful strategy. Utilizing Unleashed to get back to level 3 can also help you fulfill more damage IF you end up drawing another leveling card to ensure you stay at level 4. Or forget level 4. If you draw Time is a Warrior's Tool on level 3 (and don't have quick blast attached) you can TIAWT loop for the rest of the game. That seems fair. Goku leveling during combat will out-tempo other decks. Red Restriction and the new Vegeta attack could disrupt the actions. Red Ruthless Goku could potentially be better, utilizing Red Trailing Blast as a three of and just go from 1 to 4 then back down again using Red Tandem Attack then save the mastery for level 3 or 2 and rinse, repeat. Black Goku could be good depending on the new mastery. Getting to level 4 and utilizing Black Scout Maneuver to strip other decks of their valuable engines. Hopefully with the loss of Devious the new mastery will still make Black competitive.
     
    Cards to look for upon release: Blue MP attach cards. New discard outlets for the mastery. Any kind of auto leveling. Any kind of card drawing attacks that don't cost stages.
     
    Also, tested a proxied out Red Ruthless Goku against my Saiyan Empowered Broly and got wrecked. Broly couldn't keep up with the cards. It was close but the Goku deck was just my Red Ruthless Broly subbing his named cards for Goku's Kaioken, a single OP and Quick Blast. I think a fined tuned Ruthless Goku and the game wouldn't have been close.
     
    Whew. That was a lot to read. While the Blue Resolute Goku decks don't look quite like the list shown (and was probably about 20 cards different that what I eventually played), it's engine and understanding how it works remains the same. Goku is going to out-draw and out tempo you every, single time. Doesn't matter what color it is (Red Ruthless can out tempo every deck in the game while utilizing Red Trailing Blast combined with Red Tandem Blast to chain from level 1, all the way up to level 4 AND back down again) Orange Goku can be built as either an Unleashed build trying to capitalize on Orange's most powerful cards or even as a speed anger deck taking advantage of the larger hand sizes. Goku is defining this meta (along with Orange Retribution Roshi).
    As Worlds got closer (and I actually got my invite) the search was really on to try and find a deck that could consistently beat Goku.
     
    After most of the set spoiled I started looking more and more at Saiyan Dynamic Vegeta.
     
    Vegeta - Experienced
    Vegeta - Imposing
    Vegeta - Energized
    Vegeta - Pinnacle of Power
    Saiyan Dynamic Mastery
     
    Events: (14)
    2x Heroic Energy Sphere
    3x Confrontation
    1x Time Is A Warrior's Tool
    3x Unleashed
    3x Saiyan Outrage
    2x Clash of Wills
     
    Energy Combats: (22)
    3x Vegeta's Final Flash
    3x Vegeta's Galick Gun
    3x Quick Blast
    3x Saiyan Crouch
    2x Saiyan Tracking Blast
    2x Blinding Energy Move
    3x Assisted Kamehameha
    3x Energized Strike
     
    Physical Combats: (19)
    2x Heroic Dashing Punch
    3x Saiyan Arm Catch
    2x Wall Breaker
    3x Android Arm Breaker
    3x Sinister Choke
    3x Android Headbutt
    3x Saiyan Escape
    Setups: (5)
    2x Visiting The Past
    2x Saiyan Peace
    1x Earth Dragon Ball 7
     
    Start on level 2. Any time you draw Unleashed, it is now a more powerful Unleashed because it ends combat.
    Vegeta owns goku IMO, compare level 4 parity - goku taps to find something then vegeta does ridiculous shit like unblockable final flash + end combat. Dynamic + tracking blast wins the unleashed war, Saiyan peace to augment. If vegeta is "only" on level 2 you can play as energy turles speed beats. Goku is clunky and action heavy, beat him with virtual card advantage like vegeta can for sure. Final Flash is devastating.
    This deck looks super soft to really quick MPPV decks but it can wreck Blue Goku really, really hard. I have played 14 games online with it now against all these stock Blue and Red Goku's and I haven't lost once. None of the Red Goku's seemed very optimal though. I didn't see any that tried to build up Trailing Blasts and chain back down with Red Tandem Blast to deal more damage. Also didn't see a single Tandem Blast which felt wrong since that card destroys this deck. As long as anger or Red Ruthess Goku isn't prominent at the Dragon Prix, I think this is my deck for worlds.
    I feel like adding Flurries would help the anger matchup since if it hits it can crit (and also gives you defense against other AKs) but I don't think I can get those and AKs before worlds. Clash of Wills may not be needed but I want another way to advance other than Unleashed. Plus who cares if you advance Goku when you are Vegeta.
    If the meta moves to Orange Ret anger, Orange Ret Vegeta could be a great way to add a litttle control to the deck, or maybe go all out anti-Goku and run Black Conflict Vegeta with BSM and BST. Probably not very good though. Red Ascension Vegeta can probably do the combat and skipping thing better than Saiyan, I just don't like running a lot of non-styled with that Mastery because you lose one of the more powerful effects if you whiff on the effect. Red Restriction seems nice paired along Final Flash. Maybe a Ruthless Vegeta? Re-using Galic Gun twice in combat could be a realy good thing! Maybe even play some of Red's better attacks and do hybrid beats. Blue Tag Team Vegeta could be decent since you could start Briefs? I feel like this version couldn't level though but it can stay on 1 and pump ally damage???
     
    After I settled on a very solid list, and discussing other possible decks online with friends, it was time for playtesting in real-time with real cards at Top Cut in Chicago.My brother, Jarrett, and Lee Sheehan came along and we played games with Tony Ortiz and David Meckler. Tony took a lot of what we talked about earlier and built his own Goku and it was time to play some games.
     
    Game #1
    My Saiyan Dynamic Vegeta versus Tony's Blue Resolute Goku
     
    He wins the dice roll. He enters, he unleashes on turn 1. I drew a Saiyan Peace, a Saiyan Outrage and Quick Blast. I get wrecked that game.
    We proceed to play about 30 games that day between all of the different decks we had there. The Saiyan Dynamic Vegeta actually did well in the rest of the games that were played, except against Jarrett's Orange Retribution Roshi and Tony's Orange Retribution Android 13. However, I couldn't quite shake the feeling I had from that very first loss. It felt like I had sat there and watched Tony masturbate in front of me, all while the only thing I could do was just sit there and watch in disgust (I mean I don't want to watch Tony do that irregardless which way he was doing it). I knew it was entirely possible to do what it did, but it was supposed to be magical Christmasland. Right?? I was preaching about it since the first week Goku was spoiled. Then I thought about it even further...
     
    What if I did top 8? I would have a HUGE disadvantage going into the top 8 with a deck like Saiyan Dynamic Vegeta. My Goku opponent's would have more opportunities to draw the nuts (in a best of 3) because of his level 1 power. I would have to draw Final Flashes at very specific times. As the day went on, we started to learn about the results of the Dragon Prix: Orange Retribution Roshi and Red Ruthless Goku were the big winners of the day. Great, awesome the exact opposite of where I needed the meta to be in order for the deck to work out. I started to re-think my deck choice and after going through about seven more decks (and another one I was really close to bringing out at worlds, even having it with me the day before) I started to reconsider a deck that I KNEW would be on everyone's radar, and probably even overplayed: Blue Resolute Goku.
     
    Justin's Worlds Blue Resolute Goku Version 1.0
     
    Setups: (4)
    2x Blue Rebuke
    2x Visiting the Past
     
    Allies:(2)
    1x Chi-Chi
    1x Oolong
     
    Events: (15)
    3x Unleashed
    3x Goku's Kaioken
    3x Heroic Energy Sphere
    1x Time is a Warrior's Tool
    2x Blue Shifting Maneuver
    1x Blue Defensive Effect
    1x Overwhelming Power
    1x Goku's Search
     
    Energy Combats: (15)
    1x Blue Terror
    3x Assisted Kamehameha
    2x Blue Neck Beam
    1x Blue Tracking Blast
    2x Blue Arm Blast
    1x Blue Blanketing Blast
    3x Blue Guard
    1x Blue Narrow Escape
    1x Blue Clash
     
    Physical Combats: (24)
    3x Blue Slide
    3x Blue Slash
    3x Sinister Choke
    3x Blue Head Knock
    2x Blue Betrayl
    3x Blue Leverage
    2x Blue Crouch
    3x Blue Smug Punch
    1x Blue Decapitation
    1x Blue Knee
     
    At the ARG side event the next morning, I took out all three of the Heroic Energy Spheres, the Goku's Search, the Blue Knee, the Blue Narrow Escape, the Oolong ally and added +1 Gohan ally, +3 Blue Head Kick, +1 Blue Decapitation and +2 Blue Clash and built a more aggressive version of the deck (In anticipation of more Vegeta decks). I got 9th place...
     
    If I were to make any changes to the deck, the Ally package would completely go in favor of three Energized Strikes. As strong as the allies can be at times, just drawing them in your hand when you need combat cards can be the difference between a winning and losing game. I would also cut the Blue Knee and the Blue Clash for another Blue Blanketing Blast and another Blue Decapitation. Also, I would cut Blue Crouch for Blue Patience because having another defense that helps stack the deck can be huge in the Ruthless match-up. Patience is actually good in the Orange Ret Roshi match-up since you can dig for more cards, whereas the Crouches will do nothing. Crouch did very little for me that weekend despite the obvious play of block with Crouch, put it on top, then mastery to draw it back to hand.
     
    I would also consider adding I'll Dig Your Grave! if Roshi keeps being a huge part of the meta. Not only is it a great way to level in other match-ups, but the ability to stage pressure roshi and make the rest of your attacks unpreventable means you can take the match-up further in your favor. I would also not be opposed to running three Blue Clashes with 0 allies. It is essentially a Sinister Choke #4-6 that costs a stage and it can eat up huge mounds of endurance. At that point though, it wouldn't hurt to add back Gohan and Chi-Chi.
     
    Overall, it was an awesome experience being able to finally play in a DBZ Worlds event (since 2005). While I didn't perform as awesome as I would have liked, I still had a blast seeing what other players cooked up and getting to experience the prestige/nostalgia that made the event awesome.
    I want to address this amazing community we have: You are all the reason why I still continue to play this game. Jarrett McBride, Richard Bondi, Brian Blount, Cody Gunter, Lee Sheehan, Dann McNerney, Bc Valdez, Elmer Walter, Joey Walter, Ria Braisted Leili, Shaun Hindman, Timothy Dennis, Kyle McGrath, Phillip Taylor McGrath, Joey DiCarlo, Nicky DiCarlo, Matthew Coombs, Chad Scott, Tony A Ortiz, David Meckler, Timothy Batow, Fahad Rahman, Chris Chapman, Nick Scoop, Sundeep Kutumbaka, Brandon Bartholomew, Jordan Bartholomew, Jason Browe, Justin Coggin, Thaer Nubani, Kelly Cartwright Jr, Paul Benner Jr, Jason Toro, Mason Knox, Rizz Williams, Sean Poestkoke, Ryan Zachary Lambdin, Sean Lambdin, Garrett Wilkinson, Vinnie DeLucca, Tom VZ , a good chunk of Retro, the amazing community of users on Top Tier and I'm sure I am missing other people from the season. You are all fantastic people! The players of this game are top notch!
     
    Thanks for reading!
    Justin McBride

    Dragon Ball Z Trading Card Game World Championship 2016

    The Championship is here! November 11th-13th, DBZTopTier.com and the Official DBZ Panini Blog will be covering the 2016 Dragon Ball Z TCG World Championship Las Chance Qualifier, Main Event, and the ARG Circuit Series Events with as many updates as we can possibly post. You can use this topic to discuss the results.
     
    DBZ Fanatics and Cubicorn Games will be providing the live streams for this weekend, which you can view at from the following link:
     
    http://youtube.com/cubicorngames
     
    Best of luck to all the player's playing in the events. Please share your updates with us on our forums!

    Dragon Prix Finalists Run Down

    Retribution Roshi wins at the Dragon Prix! Matchups listed.

    Here is a brief run down of my tournament matchups at the Dragon Prix. I ran Retribution Roshi. I apologize in advance for the players whose names I forgot, I didn't take notes of my matchups/opponents as I normally do.
     
    Round 1: Saiyan Dynamic Broly - Cain Buckley, Win 1-0
    Round 2: Saiyan Dynamic Goku - Timothy Dennis, Win 2-0
    Round 3: Red Ruthless Broly, Win 3-0
    Round 4: Saiyan Dynamic Goku - Timothy Batow, Win 4-0
    Round 5: Red Ruthless Goku, Win 5-0
    Round 6: Orange Retribution Goku, Win 6-0
    Round 7: Orange Retribution Roshi - Brock Henley, Loss 6-1
    T16: Saiyan Dynamic Goku - Phillip McGrath, Win 7-1
    T8: Saiyan Dynamic Goku - Timothy Dennis , Win 8-1
    T4: Unfortunately there was no prize differences past top 4. I was the only player who wished to play out the top 4, but it was late and my opponent said he'd just scoop to me anyways. We decided to cut it short and head home.
     
    My goal of the day was to get my best friend Andy Cards his invite, huge shoutouts for him pulling through!
     
    Here were his matchups. We ran the same build.
    Round 1: Red Ruthless Goku - W
    Round 2: Red Ruthless Broly - W
    Round 3: Blue Resolute Goku - W
    Round 4: Blue Resolute Goku - W
    Round 5: Red Ruthless Goku - L
    Round 6: Red Ruthless Goku - W
    Round 7: Red Ascension Goku - W
    T16: Red Ascension Goku - W
    T8: Saiyan Dynamic Broly - W
     
    Can't wait for worlds!

    Awakening Release!

    Today, the latest expansion set for the 2016 Dragon Ball Z Trading Card Game - Awakening has released! Check out your favorite local games and hobbies store for Awakening Starter Decks and Booster packs!
     
    The website deckbuilder and card database have been updated. In addition, for those that play online, OCTGN has been updated. Details can be found here:
     
    http://dbztoptier.com/forums/index.php/topic/236-play-the-dragon-ball-z-tcg-online-via-octgn-set-up-guide/