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I only just remembered to go back to Dead Zone to see if Escalation was fully revealed, and;
https://fanztcg.wordpress.com/escalation-checklist/
How has this not been brought up yet?

Anyway, the full checklist is out so I think we're seeing all we're seeing for now. Of note is that Majin Buu got buffed considerably, and he is a fearsome foe now. Some definite pressure from him, and his level 4 is something to be careful of. I'm not 100% sure what Style he'd be most suited to though; Red could definitely help him out with extra damage that he doesn't have innately, but Orange plays the best with his powers.

Babidi is largely the same, but a bit smoothed out. The smoothing also seems to have given him some utility he lacked before. I actually really like him giving his allies PUR +2 at Level 4. That's kind of fun. I still think he's largely competing with Cell though, and we'll need to see if the Majin Trait beats out access to Namekian/Saiyan.

Majin Vegeta is also largely the same, but I believe his Level 1 has been simultaneously nerfed and buffed. I could actually really see that being a viable option for an MPPV deck though.

Outside of personalities; I really like Black Glare, and how it really supports the old Black Android decks. I also really love Black Gut Check and Black Energy Rings. While it's only a handful of cards, I'm actually really happy with the Black Support this set.

Some of the Blue Support seems god damn fantastic.
Right from the get go, we have Blue Balancing Drill, a card that feels hand-crafted for my favorite deck. The damage mitigation is a bit lackluster, but for level-locking yourself so finely... Yaaaas.
Blue Absorption is also pretty nuts, and it's honestly good to see them giving some support to the whole "copying attacks" archtype Blue has got going. I don't think this is enough alone, but a damage negation + copy + anger gain + critical hit is phenomenal. I definitely see this getting some use, although I can't say I see it being in the Top Tier (heh).
Blue Security works really well with select decks as well. I'm especially looking at Blue Cell for that one, although I imagine part of the intent was for it to mix with Babidi. It can also be tech'd into just about any Tag Team deck for a quick change of gears. 2 Endurance is also pretty nice to see.

The Namekian support is... Hugely disappointing. Not necessarily because it's bad, although I wouldn't say any of them jump out as amazingly good, but because it doesn't play with the new Piccolo all that well. I kind of get it though, since the impression given by the artwork is that these cards are more meant to work between Piccolo and Gohan.

In specific though, the Drills are kind of lacking. Manipulation can play fairly okay with Kami, but it's not going to be your go-to drill by any means. Likewise, Empowering Drill has some fun interactions, but a Screen 2/Rejuvenate 1 isn't really what Namekian was looking for.
After that, I'd say Namekian Rush and Namekian Reinforced Blast are the really big cards for the Namekians here. Rush is a bit generic, but definitely usable, and Reinforced Blast plays really well with Radiant Cell for punishing the opponent.

sighs and is it any surprise? Orange almost irrefutably got the best support (on average) from this. Because, you know, Orange was lagging behind so bloody much.
Alright, so that might be a bit unfair of me. Some of these cards probably aren't as good as I feel they are. Attraction Drill is only mediocre, but definitely works wonders for those wanting to keep their vital drills at 1, or even just wanting to maintain their board as much as possible.
On the other side, Intensity Drill is honestly just good. On it's own, it's not overwhelming or unfair. Make an attack unpreventable, add a 1 life card poke to everything. But that'll start to stack up quick, and I think anyone who can drop it early will start to see how it adds up over a game. And honestly, dropping it early is incredibly easy.

Orange Beatdown is where it starts to get... Hrm. At least for me. Take a swing, and immediately your drills are untouchable for your opponent's next action. Not worded that way, but that's effectively how it plays.  Also, here's a free, non-conditional 2 anger, we all know how much trouble Orange has with MPPV. Honestly, I think this was intended to be balanced by lacking Endurance and having Banish After Use, but that doesn't make this card any less amazing imo. This card is almost definitely a 3-of in any Orange deck thanks to the advantages it leverages for free, plus some good stage damage.
Orange Elbow Rush and Orange Energy Ball are both also things. They're not really anything special, or new, but they're more of what made Orange decks quite so competitive. Elbow Rush especially, since it's got all the hallmarks of a good card. Some Endurance (only 1, but servicable), no cost for usable damage (AT +3), and if it hits it grabs a drill. It's basically Orange Collision, but scaled down to make up for it searching the Life deck. It also combos exceptionally well with Orange Extension, giving you some incredibly easy Drill access in the early, mid and late game.
Energy Ball is a severely nerfed Bicycle Kick imo. This card is probably not going to do too much at all, and I actually think a lot of people will miss it. But it is a viable card, easily hitting for critical damage in combo with... Can we just say Orange in general now? And searching for a drill or set-up for a respectably low cost.

Red's support this time around feels a bit weird.
Red Burn specifically catches me. I'm not actually sure if anyone will use it.
Likewise, I can't be certain if anyone will use Red Dual Punch? It does it's job, and is an INSANELY good card for Red Piccolo/Gohan/Cell, but... Actually, this is just a good card for any Namekian MP. So I give Dual Punch a thumbs up, ig.
Sleeper Hold is another one I'm just not sure if anyone will use. I don't think it's really worth the space, and the "play from discard pile" effect isn't all that amazing. The card will do it's job, but will it do it better than other cards Red already has? Eh, maybe.
Palm Shot comes up a bit short of Dual Punch, but seems pretty usable. I don't know if anyone will put it in over other cards Red has to offer though. Really, this batch of support for Red feels like a filler to me.

ONTO SAIYAN.
And honestly, yeah, this is workable. Combative Stance is actually a pretty good card for anyone rocking Rampaging Mastery, and really helps out with Clench decks. Honestly, this is just a pretty respectable addition to the Attach cards of Saiyan. And it's a +/- 0, so any deck that benefits from it will probably run it without worry (and any extra copies can be dropped for Rampaging's Attack). I know some people were a bit meh about this card since it's kind of working for an archetype, but come on guys, we always complain about them not finishing their archetypes. We should be happy to see some support for one.
ANNND honestly, I have the exact same feeling towards Flying Kick and Quick Strike. Clench decks are getting some really strong tools between these three cards, with some in-built draw and a flat 6 stage (12 with Clench) attack. This card might actually be a bit too strong given that it lacks any cost, and only offers advantages to it's deck. And if Flying Kick might be a bit too much, I actually think Quick Strike might just be a bit broken. Flat 5 stages (10 with Clench) that hits twice, has good Endurance on it, and... It's kind of ugly. Combine it with Clench Nappa, and you can easily wind up with a 14-16 stage attack that swings twice. Yuck.
Forceful Stop is meh, and Massacre is respectable. A bit of a space filler, but good damage, some board control, rejuvenates itself. Alright.

And the Freestyles. Honestly, I was a bit nervous looking at these given how some Freestyle cards in the past have completely changed the games landscape. Did they this time? Well, let's see:
First off, Deflection Drill is god damn hilarious. I don't think it's great, nor do I think you should make room for it in your deck, but it's another addition of "Let's hard-counter a deck type to balance the game." This time aimed at mill decks. I really love this card, because the mental image of just shutting down your opponent's mill effects and reflecting them is too good.

Halt is fine. Kind of just another Sphere for Gods. It only being at 1 is a bit weird to me, but I guess it's to make sure Gods don't have 6 Spheres. It's fine, nothing broken so far.

On the Move is the first Freestyle card here I look at, and wonder if it's really good, or just okay. Omni-block, so that's good. Your opponent gets the card back though, so that's... Actually pretty fair. Oh, but you draw 1 card when you use it... So if you use it to block a Personality's attack, you block and draw 1. Wait, AND you gain stages??
I personally think this card is really good. I won't say broken, although I definitely see it swinging some games when you bounce an attack back to the opponent's hand, and then lower their stages so they can't use it. Or using it to stop a Personality's Attack, and getting an extra action that combat out of the deal. It has it's moments where it's straight not fair, but I don't think this card has shit on Unleashed.

Reality Check is fine. If your deck needed some extra board control, here you go. Have 3 of it. Does nothing else. Doesn't give you anything else. Just a good utility card, and honestly, one we needed a LONG time ago.

And then Concussive Strike. Does exactly what it did before. And honestly, it's just a good card that could work really well in a Clench deck. I wonder if we'll actually see some Clench Decks born from this set.

Controlled Energy Burst is awright, 'ey?

Honestly, I don't know what to say about this set. Only getting 3 MPs was a bit disappointing, especially since this would've been the time for a new Level 3/4 Goku with SS2/3. Or even just a bit of legacy support to coincide with the many flashbacks of this arc. On the other hand though, I really like the new Clench support, and the odd bits of archetype support here and there really make me feel positive.

Then I see the new Orange Support, and I feel cold. I wonder how long until this becomes Orange-Z: The Game.

Also, I'm not touching any named cards in here. Almost all of them are the same as before, and we've had that discussion.
What say you, Top-Tier? Am I just completely wrong, spot-on, or somewhere in the middle?

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Its not gonna be an Orange-Z game because Orange Retribution Mastery and Red Tactical Drill have been frozen. Read the CRD!!! I will admit I felt the same way until I discovered that. That being said, Adept MPPV seems very doable. 

I think you have gotten a few things wrong:

   Red Sleeper Hold is going to be absolutely nuts in Ruthless, whether you are going MPPV or survival. 

   Namekian Reinforced Blast is a 7 damage unpreventable card pretty much (2 life cards is hard to endure, and then its mill 5). So that is a brutal card, but it can't crit. 

   Empowering Drill just won't see play until we see a namekian Drill beat-down MP. It's main goal is to support enlightened mastery, but it really needs to be allowed to stay when you level up imo. Namekian Rush is definitely what Namekian Phys beats needed (Justice Punch might be its only other source of anti-anger?). 

   Namekian Destruction Blast is a mediocre card but it fills a huge weakness in radiant energy beats. Namekian Manipulation Drill is absolutely bonkers, hands down. Aggressive ball plays are very open with this card in play. 

   Saiyan Massacre is also really nice: board control that can rejuvenate itself is gonna be priceless in some match ups. 

 

Out of the new MP's I think you pretty much nailed it. I am not sure lv2 camp Majin Vegeta decks have what it takes to hinder any combat-ending/action-skipping meta.  I also agree that Babidi is just a crappy version of Cell pretty much, but idk. Buu is powerful, but people think they can easily play around his level 4... time will certainly tell. 

What will be interesting to see is if we will see any non-ally energy beats decks now that we have Buu and Majin Vegeta to accompany Piccolo, Goten, Broly... 

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I am really happy with the set and CRD update. Also On The Move is NUTS

and I am VERY happy with the Blue support, especially for my Gohan deck, because I feel Blue hasn't gotten much love in FanZ up until this point.

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How do you plan on comboing with “On the move”? I guess it’s pretty lucrative in Black or any deck that can take advantage of Heroic Plan... 

I am a bit unsure about sacrificing a card in hand to cancel a skip effect but a combat ender I can justify. Just wish they didn’t change it to an event card (it was a physical combat at one point). 

I was expecting a card that could banish cards in the discard pile when entering combat and could be banished from the discard pile to cancel a skip effect (parenthetical). 

Edited by Jaith1

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Looking forward to using orange beatdown and elbow rush in a combative goten list i have brewing up right now. Still only a concept but stage beats plus anger and damage prevention seems pretty solid. 

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I'm guessing that the lack of posts on the escalation set is due to the entrants of the Tournament of Power building secret, tournament winning decks that don't want to give any hints?

Overall it's not a bad set; Piccolo's Lethal Chop is more balanced with a cost, black and blue Majin babidi ally decks, more utility with reality check, and on the move! good for personality powers. I was a bit underwhelmed with majin buu though.

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After getting my butt kicked on OCTGN, I can tell you guys a few things on my mind. As a disclaimer, all my decks seem to be garbage at the moment. 

I was hoping the recent freezing of Retribution and Tactical drill would open up room for new decks, but that doesn't seemed to have happened.

Ascension Trunks, Saiyan Broly, Tag Cell, Future Gohan, Gohan, Drawku, and Yamcha were and still are the big boys. I haven't experienced the impact of the new Majin personalities yet. 

Future Gohan mixing with Gohan stacks was an atrocity and reverted for good reason. But these "Future Gohan and friends" decks are also kinda wrong to me imo. He was a loner in the canon, so him taking advantage of Chi Chi and Piccolo allies seems wrong to me. Making Future Gohan a seperate entity that can use Gohan named cards is how it should be imo. He gets so much action advantage as it is (by turning one off your power or gaining actions when you use your power). Anyways x2 Tug of War is very necessary these days, and I think very few decks can get away without using them. If there is one interesting thing they could do is replace the anti-anger effects on F. Gohan with "Banish an ally". 

Orange Combative and Red Amplified energy beats are my next exploration (unfortunately with Drawku/Yamcha/F.Gohan). For those that are not aware, Adept Drawku/Gohan physical beats can easily deck you in 2 combats (Tutoring key cards for the perfect combo is still very viable).  

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7 hours ago, Jaith1 said:

Orange Combative and Red Amplified energy beats are my next exploration (unfortunately with Drawku/Yamcha/F.Gohan). For those that are not aware, Adept Drawku/Gohan physical beats can easily deck you in 2 combats (Tutoring key cards for the perfect combo is still very viable).  

If you're really desperate to escape those few, you could probably swing Hero18 for any of the decks you'd use Yamcha in.

Beyond that though, I'm not really surprised that the top decks aren't changing too drastically. The guys at FanZ did say going into this that they were aiming to make cards around their level, as opposed to power-creeping them out. Unfortunately, this has kind of meant that only the cream of the crop ADDS to the old meta without really cycling it out, and honestly, the amount of freezing/errata'ing that would need to be done to balance what PanZ left feels unrealistic. That said, I am surprised we've not seen a few Blue Babidi coming out to contest Cell. Or even the presence of Namekian Radiant Cell, with just the bloody absurd amount of advantage that deck can generate.

That said, edits to FanZ cards are pretty simple. I'm actually 100% for erratas to the FanZ creations, since they won't clog up the CRD.

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I have faced a protective babidi once and it didn’t feel nearly as threatening as tag cell. I have an eye on H.A18 and Kid Trunks but they are not even 75% of the top dogs (with some support they could be though).

I am probably being a bit dramatic, we have plenty of viable decks to play with in the game’s current state. It’s just that freezing retribution / tactical drill hasn’t brought any new decks. 

Ascension Trunks will always keep all decks in check (a deck has to be fast or pack 10+ anti-anger cards). As a result, a (quoting the blog) M. Vegeta survival deck with “a back up of mppv” will never be viable really. This “mppv back up plan” will remain non-existent so long as we have awakening Trunks.

Rather than invest in anger for maybe a level or two, you are better off getting Unleashed. Any competitive M. Vegeta deck will be packing Unleashed imo.p

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8 hours ago, Jaith1 said:

Rather than invest in anger for maybe a level or two, you are better off getting Unleashed. Any competitive M. Vegeta deck will be packing Unleashed imo.p

I've actually been debating that myself, since I've been playing around with both Red and Saiyan (Dynamic) M. Vegetas. But honestly, I've mostly just used them for level hopping down to 1 in both variants, and then jumping back up to 2 to get a second use out of his in-built Energy Attack. I'm sure there are better uses for him, but thus far, I've not really bothered to swing to 3 or 4 just because I've not run into match-ups where it's really been needed. Both decks tend to have enough board control without the level 3's power, and the level 1's power to banish the discard lets me use key Freestyle cards like Vicious Strike and his named cards without worrying about ruining my own setups.

But I do agree. I don't think any kind of MPPV back-up plan works for Vegeta, whether you're using him for level bouncing like I am, or using him for the lockdown and pressure elements elsewhere. And I probably agree that Unleashed is 100% a more worthwhile investment in the deck regardless of your playstyle, since you can just as well use it to bounce down as you can upwards. It offers a lot more utility in his levels than you get with half-hazard MPPV strats, and he loses too much steam later on for dedicated MPPV to be worthwhile.

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I don't know if my play group has just warped around a handful of MPs or what, but we seem to be having a very different view of the new Majin MPs then most. I don't know if it's how we're prepping or deck building or what, but we'll see what happens after ToP. 

 

Without giving away secrets on some decks I'll just touch on my new favorite pet project, Tag Babidi. I'm loving this deck and I think I have a pretty unique build for him (Or maybe not? No one is posting lists lol). Any deck is going to be a struggle to balance when you only run 5 attacks in the entire deck, but fine tuning and balancing it has been a blast. Not to mention the amount of combo potential it has. I think my record was a mill for 18 with one action? I would strongly recommend playing around the deck and learning some of the crazy things he can pull off. Favorite combo of the deck - Blue Feast + Level 2 power + Blue Waiting Drill w/ Tora+Buu+Dabura Bonus points for having Blue training active / Blue Challenging Strike active

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1 hour ago, Amanax said:

Without giving away secrets on some decks I'll just touch on my new favorite pet project, Tag Babidi. I'm loving this deck and I think I have a pretty unique build for him (Or maybe not? No one is posting lists lol). Any deck is going to be a struggle to balance when you only run 5 attacks in the entire deck, but fine tuning and balancing it has been a blast. Not to mention the amount of combo potential it has. I think my record was a mill for 18 with one action? I would strongly recommend playing around the deck and learning some of the crazy things he can pull off. Favorite combo of the deck - Blue Feast + Level 2 power + Blue Waiting Drill w/ Tora+Buu+Dabura Bonus points for having Blue training active / Blue Challenging Strike active

Not gonna lie, that sounds pretty amazing. I imagine the deck is somewhat like the old Namekian Gohan and Friends, with it being built mostly around Events, Blocks, Drills and Ally attacks and actions only with a few less cards needed to bring your combo pieces together (since Babidi can permit allies to make actions regardless of his own power stages, and keeps his ally focus from Level 2 up).

That said, even what you're laying down there sounds incredibly similar to what the old Cell Ally deck was, with a heavy focus on Ally-based mill. I'd actually love to see Mill Cell VS Babidi just to settle which one of the two is really the King when it comes to this playstyle, though that debate immediately comes back to Cell Jrs/Saiyan Allies VS Majin Allies.

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I think Cell would honestly have the advantage in the match up because he can spin any ally for his effects where babidi is killing off his own allies (At least in my deck as I sit at level 1/2 with Babidi). Babidi will QUICKLY run out of allies, especially if Cell lets Babidi get to 2, where his ability can only pull from discard and Cell keeps sending them to deck instead. 

 

In general though, I feel like Babidi can do it better. He doesn't need to rely on unleashed or another tool that shuts off MPPV to get where you want to go, so he doesn't open himself up to being de-leveled by opposing unleashed plays like Cell would. The Majin allies have built in protection in the form of damage prevention on Dabura and Buu vs the -1 life card of the one Cell Jr ally. Buu and Dabura both play into the combos of the deck where as the Cell Jr allies don't have any real effects of their own in most cases. Beyond that, both MPs can grab their allies, though Cell has the advantage of grabbing his Jrs from any zone starting at level 2 where Babidi doesn't gain such luxury until level 4 (Which again, you probably aren't seeing in my build unless your opponent digs you to four for... science?). I've not played Tag Cell, though I feel like if the Cell deck can get to 3 it'll probably do really well, but can struggle at lower levels. Babidi is a machine starting at level 1. Overall, I like Babidi more. But I've been looking for a deck to use cute cards  like Blue Vision and Blue Feast for a long time, so I'll admit I'm probably biased.

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Not going to lie, all this talk about Ally Builds kind of makes me want to go back and try my hand at some old PanZ builds, like Ally Gohan or Broku. I avoided them entirely the first time around because of how popular and overwhelming they were, but it always did sound like a fun way to play...
If only King Kai was better too... That one has never even made sense to me. He trained all the classic Z-Fighters, so why not let him basically play as Babidi, but for the Z-Bois?

 

To be honest, the impression I'm getting from what you're saying and what I've seen around here and there online is that Babidi is a more concentrated, but less versatile version of Cell. His almost sole focus is grabbing his allies out from various places and then milling. He's only got the Majin trait to bolster him up. He's also got a pretty notable edge at Level 3, since he can start grabbing his own allies during the Planning Step and doesn't need to enter combat. Essentially, he does one thing, and one thing only, but as a result, he's a lot faster and stronger at doing that one thing than our previous Ally MPs. My main concern with him is that he doesn't feel like he has an out to big board control, like Awakening Gohan, Broly, Cell, and so on.

On the other hand, we all know what Cell has. What makes things interesting on that front (for me) is that Cell has access to all the traits except God and Majin, which gives him an absurdly diverse pool of tech that he didn't really have before. Plus, he makes for a hellishly fun Radiant Personality.

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I don't see Cell as having more control than Babidi until level 3 where you can pull Nappa from anywhere. Outside of that one level, you are in the same position as Babidi and will rely on whatever removal you have in the deck to get the job done.

I don't think the two decks are all that similar. Yeah, they both deal with mill and they both have allies, but beyond that they view combat completely different. Then again, I haven't played Tag Cell myself, so maybe I'm drawing too many comparisons to Knowledge Cell? With the way I've build my Babidi, I play a skirmish style where I'm ducking in and out of combat trying to punish every choice my opponent makes while I build up my combo pieces until I'm ready to go for a K.O. With Cell, I feel like you are actually attacking and trying to push for damage on the opponent, taking a more traditional approach to combat. If I wasn't already planning on building a Krillin-18 abuse tag deck, I might try and build tag cell just to see the comparison lol

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4 hours ago, Amanax said:

I don't see Cell as having more control than Babidi until level 3 where you can pull Nappa from anywhere. Outside of that one level, you are in the same position as Babidi and will rely on whatever removal you have in the deck to get the job done.

Cell can spin the opponent's allies for his power, and Cell's Draining Attack can banish up to 5 Villain Allies from either side of the board. It's not the most versatile board control, but it's probably on par with Gohan's Awakening stack for Ally killing, and Babidi literally has no board control for comparisons sake. Beyond that though, he also does have access to more traits and styles, and Cell's Style is a peculiar card that I don't really know how to describe. I guess it's a snipe?

I'd offer up a Blue Mill Cell deck for you to try, but truth be told, I never played it myself. I can comment from having versed it a STUPID amount pre-FanZ that the decks don't play anything like the Namekian or Saiyan Versions which are a lot more aggressive. Rather, they tend to focus more on milling you out passively.

You're not gunning for his Level 3 ASAP with this deck if you do build it, but rather, only pushing up to it when you're going for game. The non-conditional 5 card mill (because you're going to have allies out, come on) is really strong, but the Level 2 gives you the ability to keep spinning Cell Jr. -  Escaping, milling for 4 that then goes into Blue Tag Mastery's rejuvenate with Blue Waiting Drill for a total of 6. Assuming this is still early game as well, and you've only got Escaping and Trapped out, that goes up to 9 cards milled (or 7 if you're stuck on his level 1).
The Level 2 also drops his own PL which gives you access to any villain ally's Power. What you do with that is up to you, but I've seen people tech Guldos, Jeices, Dr. Wheelos or whatever else have you. Basically, his level 2 is where it's at for the majority of the match just so you can keep forcing Ally actions and looping Escaping with Tag. I actually used to win games against Tag Cell by forcing them to 3 prematurely, because it lost them all their Ally actions in favor of a single hard mill a turn that actually did less total damage than he WAS doing prior.

That said, Cell CAN go for traditional attacks as well if you wanna hybridize the approach. Things like Assisted Kamehameha are just raw value cards, so do what you do. I've also not seen the deck played at all since FanZ dropped, but I'm pretty certain that cards like Security and Tora bolster it up a pretty decent amount.

On a side note, my current project with Blue is a Blue Protective Piccolo. I'm probably late to the party (oh, I'm DEFINITELY late to the party), but anchoring his Power to get off Discard synergies is incredibly fun, and I recommend everyone try it. My big issue with the deck right now though is just managing to actually push for game. The deck has a lot of mischief to it, but none of its plays seem to do a particularly large amount of damage, so, you know. Throwing it out there in case anyone has any ideas. I'll probably put up a deck list later after I rummage through it one last time, but I'd love ideas before I do.

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That's a fair point about the ally spin. You are absolutely correct, and I failed to account for it as board control. When I think board, I think setups and drills which doesn't make sense when we are talking about ally decks like this. Babidi does bring other tools to the table though, such as  6 ally fetch cards (3 of which are combat enders). So different tools for different tasks. 

 

So, how are you getting your mill up that high consistently? Trapped doesn't do anything for you to increase mill unless he's your only ally out, so you can only get him OR Tora. So spin Escaping for mill 4, 7 if you have Tora out. Trapped doesn't increase the base mill of Cell's power since you mill  before you spin on both level 1 and 2. So if you only have trapped + escaping on level 2 you mill them for 5 (base 3 not amped because trapped isn't your only ally, and then 2 from escaping which is now buffed by trapped being the only ally). Seems like the sweet spot is Tora+Waiting Drill+Escaping loop then you can mill for 4 from power, 2 for banishing Escaping, and then 3 from rejuvinating at the end of combat for a total mill of 9. Not bad for only 3 cards that are easy to setup. I like the consistency and ease of setup. I assume Dominance + Draining attack to get to 2? Maybe with that new Blue Drill to prevent de-level? Sounds straight forward enough.

 

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That was kind of what I was meaning when I said the two are very similar, but Babidi is much more concentrated than Cell is and both a lot safer to play (combat enders), and a lot less safe to play (more vulnerable to control decks). That said, I find it absolutely hilarious that they BOTH have access to Vegeta - Content within their own engines.

You are right though, I was off with my numbers for the mill by 2 cards, though that's still a pretty hefty passive move. Also, I didn't take Tora into account there since I was mostly reciting what I remembered.
You've got it in one with how the deck boosts up to 2 as well, though it should also be noted that Cell has some innate anger gain at Level 1 that CAN get you to 2 with some very minor input from outside, and strictly speaking, you don't NEED to get to 2 to make the combos work. It just makes you more potent, and enables cards like Blue Restraint to be used with reckless abandon (since you can banish Escaping and 2 other allies from your deck, then just rejuvenate the other two while using Cell to pull the Cell Jr).

Just going through cards, I cannot come up with a way for them to hit your number of an 18 card mill without using Draining Attack (or equivalent) to bounce to 3, swinging the POWER, then bouncing back down with a Dominance (and that feels like a rarity). Maybe on turns moving up from 1 to 2, and putting in a Blue Stylish Pose to grab out Escaping twice? Hrm.

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Yeah Babidi's combos harder when all the pieces line up, but his normal level 2 power with reliable support is slightly below what Cell can do with reliable support. Though, I was thinking about it, and I'm wondering if there is a misplay in the interaction? So here's how the super combo goes if I'm correct on how the interactions work

Cards in play/in hand/availabe: Blue Feast + Level 2 power + Blue Waiting Drill w/ Tora+Buu+Dabura+Random Ally (We'll say Yakon)

Activate level 2 power, destroy Yakon (Buu then forces a mill 2 thanks to Tora), period break in Babidi Power, respond with Blue Feast since an ally was destroyed, search your life deck  or discard pile for a setup, drill, or ally and put it into play. Grab say.. Yamu and put into play. Feast is still resolving on the stack when the ally enters play and triggers both Blue Waiting Drill's rejuvination and Dabura's mill. Dabura mills for 2 thanks to Tora, and you rejuvinate the destroyed Yakon, which since you rejuvinated an ally will trigger Waiting drills mill 2 (3 w/ Tora). Cards resolve and go to discard and we complete Babidi's level 2 effect, milling my opponent for 4. 

Mill 2 - Yakon leaves play 

Mill 2 - Yamu enters play
Mill 3 - Ally was rejuvinated

Mill 4 - Babidi remaining effect
Total - 11

In the particular turn I did the 18 mill I believe I had 1 Blue Training going and a challenging strike.  In total I milled for high 30s to mid 40s that combat.  I don't think Cell has anything that can compete with that level of shenanigans, and I'm honestly not even 100% sure I would get the ally rejuvination or if it would be Feast that would be rejuvinated, which would effect the mill count pretty substantially. 


Going to your other random note, I raise your Blue Piccolo with my Mischievous Tao thanks to the new Black Glare allowing for a tutor on Black Absorption drill for out of combat deck stacking and 9 combat enders (5 of which are repeatable). It's along the same vein, longs of mischief but difficulty closing out games. Ha Dabura deck ready to rage quit last week over it though after I ended every combat and watched him discard whole hands of sword cards then get pricked by Black Capture and/or dodon ray.

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Unfortunately, that's probably one you'll need to take to the Dead Zone (or the Facebook Page). My friends and I have pretty much always played it as, the moment the card is resolved, it goes to drop (unless otherwise stated) so by how we play, Feast would be the one getting rejuvenated. But then, we've also seen time and time again that my particular play group plays the game wrong since we don't really have senior players, judges, or anyone else we can ask questions and we're not going to sit around looking up rulings the one time a month we get together to play :/

Man, Tao sounds like a dick, but I kind of love that such an old MP is still capable of a lot of fun plays and even (mildly) competing with things. That actually just makes me happy, and it shows a good level of game design (whether incidental, or deliberate).

Oh, on the topic of if Cell can pull any similar levels of mill in a turn, I don't think it's impossible with him if you get a Cell's Provocation (from hand, or by Rejuvenation) and a Blue Restraint off, or if you're level hopping for that turn, but the pieces needed to make his combos really shine are things you need to draw into. There's also some mention warranted of the Cell's Style mill, but it's not consistent so I wouldn't promote it.
So far though, the best I've got is using Cell's POWER first to pull an Ally and Mill 2 (Tora + Arrival Drill), then his POWER to spin an enemy's ally for the Mill (4 on Level 2 with Tora), Cell's Provocation on your own Cell Jr. Escaping to banish (4, then 6 with Tora), Blue Restraint for another 4 with Tora, then either find a way to Level to 3 (Draining Attack), 6 card Mill at 3. So;

Cell brings out Cell Jr. - Escaping - Mill 2
Cell spins an enemy's ally - Mill 4
Cell's Provocation - Mill 4
Cell Jr. - Escaping's POWER - Mill 2
Blue Restraint to banish 3 allies - Mill 4
THEN EITHER
Cell's LV3 Power - Mill 6
OR
End Phase Rejuvenation - Mill 3

Waiting Drill also gives you a Rejuv when you play Escaping at the start of the turn, which might hit a Provocation or another Ally if you're lucky, but I don't want to include those numbers here tbh.
You're still stuck pushing to 3, but that is 20+ cards in A turn. Alternatively, you can pull similar things with his Level 1 to 2 (which is infinitely more likely to go off), and if you used Dominance to do it, then you don't lose the End Phase mill. This is also just assuming you have Tora, Waiting Drill and Arrival Drill out at turn start, so there's probably a way to keep pushing it up somewhere I can't see, and it is not an INCONSISTENT setup. I just personally dislike how it needs 3 specific-ish cards in hand, though if you don't jump up to 3, you're still getting a 3 card mill from Waiting and hitting 19-ish cards from the two cards in hand.

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I think you guys are forgetting how amazing that Raditz ally is as well. 

I like leveling up these decks with Broly level 3. Throw in a casual Menace or two, then I have milled these ally decks 30 stages (that’s assuming you only have 2 allies).

Right now Dynamic Broly is the most solid choice for me. Start on lv2 banishing my opponents combo pieces from the start. If my opponent does get rolling all I have to do is land a Dig and that’s game pretty much.

Adept decks will be running Driving Drill, which will hurt Babidi more than Cell. 

For the non-adept, Moment of Peace is certainly a staple. 

I want to play Red Hero Vegeta energy beats, but I won’t have enough stages with Ruthless. Red Restriction, Red Chest Beam Final Flash and Vegeta’s Prideful Challenge seems like a solid foundation for what’s out there but Broly smacks it like a fly on the wall.

Majin Vegeta has a similar problem in that it’s not fast enough and loses the beats race to Broly.

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Denithan - Arrival drill doesn't proc for Cells ally fetch since his is "When entering" and arrival is only during combat. Other than that solid. Does the deck typically run the blue restraint / wash combos? I tried that with Babidi at first and it felt.. well bad. Also, with Blue tag having no reliable way to rejuvinate Cell's provocation, does it typically make the cut still?

 

Jaith1 - I have been trying to find a place for Raditz. I thought it was going to be this Babidi deck especially since the first iteration ran a pretty absurd number of setups. The problem I have with him as a whole, is that once again I find myself not having a reliable way to push myself to low enough stages to actually use him. For example, my Babidi deck has 0 stage damage in the deck, he won't be pushing broly to 1-0 stages anytime soon.  Driving drill will certainly hurt some decks more than others. Moment of peace is certainly neat, honestly forgot that card existed. Would add, non-adept, non-combative decks.

 

Majin Vegeta isn't just a beats MP though, so he should lose the beats race to Broly. Mike, the guy who does the art for FanZ is in our play group and has a pretty fun Red Ruthless Majin Vegeta. He has a hard time if he gets stuck on 1, but once he gets to 2+ he is bouncing all over the place. Beat decks not named Broly have a hard time chewing through the raw amount of stages that deck tends to have just from the level hopping, and it can push some real damage while it's doing it.  Like Babidi to Cell, I would compare Majin Vegeta to Broly. Yes, they both want stage beats and extended combats, but they approach how they do it in completely different ways. 

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Restraint is a yes, Wash is a maybe. At the time, it was a no because there weren't really that many other Ally decks around besides Cell and MAYBE Namekian Gohan, so it was mostly just bouncing your own board which could be really detrimental. Nowadays, I think we have a much wider array of Ally decks, and a lot of Allies that play dual functions in a myriad of decks (Gohan, Krillin, 18), so Wash COULD work.

Also, yeah, straight up, Cell's Provocation makes the cut. The Rejuvenation effect is mostly a bonus in the deck, but no matter how we address it, it's still a 4-6 card mill in an Event with no cost, and you can (and probably should) tech in some Rejuv allies like King Cold to guarantee the rejuv goes off.
You've kind of touched upon one of the strengths of Cell > Babidi though, in that Cell's Level 2 can drop itself down to 0, so you CAN tech in Allies like Raditz quite consistently. Cell's range is mostly just whatever allies you want + the 1-2 Cell Jrs. you need for his combos and POWER (at this point in the game though, I'd probably just say to run Escaping for the loop. MAYBE Trapped so that you can make up some damage if/when Tora is killed). The big issue is that you need Blue or Freestyle support to pull out the others, but if there was ever a Style to make that convenient... Well, Blue is it.

That said, I would say Babidi and Cell are a LOT more comparable than Majin Vegeta and Broly. They both have the same playstyle, MO, and even similar POWERs. Both of them go for hard mills, use the same drills, setups and Masteries, and only really differ in maybe less than 10 cards (not counting Named Cards or Allies) which are optimal/sub-optimal because of their respective tools and their ally line-up. The only huge differences I see is in how they set-up their combos, and what allies they line-up for their turns.

And to clarify, I mean 10 card by name, NOT 10 cards different between the decks total.

Meanwhile, Majin Vegeta is a level-hopping, unrelenting arsehole who avoids all but a few Freestyle cards. He has a Stage Modifier, sure, but that's about the ONLY thing that gives him a Stage Damage focus and he's not reliant on it to pump out good numbers. Rather, his concept seems much more focused on pushing against Meta decks, with his Level 1 giving crits that can take Dragon Balls or kill off allies early, his Level 2 specifically stopping decks like Babidi and Supreme Kai who have an unholy number of combat enders (not to mention Saiyan Oppressive), his Level 3 mercilessly shredding Drill/Ally/Setup decks while gaining free advantage, and his Level 4 just being a strong attack to seal games after enough disruption.

Broly, in comparison, is just a power-house and unrelenting. I actually think he is one of the worst designed MPs in the entire game because he does WAY too much with barely any investment and has no real weaknesses.

Cell and Babidi are both ally focused mill decks that use similar boards and a LOT of the same cards. I would call them both the archetypal Blue MP.
Broly is a beatdown MP. He is THE Saiyan MP. He charges at you head-first. Majin Vegeta is then the most archetypal Black MP this game's ever seen (ESPECIALLY with his heavy Banish focus), he's just also generic enough where he doesn't need to be played in Black.

 

EDIT: Actually looking at building a Black Vegeta deck, there are a LOT of cool tools he can use. But that's actually brought me to a ruling question; how do Black Punishment and Black Remembrance Drill interact? Because they're both fairly old cards, and they look like they should loop ad-infinitum, so I imagine there's a ruling for that I've not seen.

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Black punishment got an errata in set 4. Now reads: Energy attack costing 2 stages. DAMAGE: 4 life cards. Raise your anger 1 level. HIT: Until the start of your next turn, whenever a card banishes itself after use your opponent destroys the top card of his Life Deck.

 

http://dragonballztcg.wikia.com/wiki/Black_Punishment

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See, I'm not disappointed that they killed the loop.  I figured they would, because no way was it left.

But I'm still pretty disappointed with that errata. Theoretically, they could've just made it proc when cards were banished from a non-CONSTANT source. That way, you'd still be able to work with a pretty consistent Black Banish/Mill deck.

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