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Ah fuck I cant believe im banned
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Everything posted by ACP

  1. See: http://shop.thegameacademyonline.com/products/search?query=duelist+groundz They're $15 each with $5 shipping anywhere in the US (international shipping is more, not sure how much). We have all sizes from small to XXL. As soon as a size sells out, we will print more of them. Payments accepted are all major credit cards and paypal. I do have one myself already, and it's a great shirt, that I can tell you. If you guys want me to post pics of me wearing one, I can do so. Personally, I like it better than the shirts that I had made a few years ago, but that's just my opinion.
  2. Hey there new member, I'm glad that you've decided to join DuelistGroundz. We're always interested in expanding our site and attracting new members, so we'd like to know what specifically drew you to our site to know what we're doing right. Did you hear about DuelistGroundz on another forum, like Pojo, YGOrganization, YugiohCardMaker, or the DuelingBook forums? Did you hear about us on social media, like Facebook, reddit, or twitter? Was it through watching a DuelistGroundz match on twitch, facebook, or youtube? Maybe it was from a Yugioh discord channel? Or was it from a specific member who knew you and recommended that you join? Did you join for a specific purpose like mafia or warring? Let us know below and 100 reputation points will be added to your account. Please be as specific as possible. We don't just want to know that you "Heard about DGZ on social media." We want to know which specific social media platform it was. (Note: This offer only applies to new members, not already established ones).
  3. Since Modern will be essentially replacing Extended, this format will now be used to discuss Modern.
  4. Post here if you're streaming with a link to your stream and description. Doesn't matter what game it is. Note: Posts in this thread do not violate the advertising rule, but don't solicit donations from people in this thread. If we like your stream, we might host you on the official DGz twitch channel: http://www.twitch.tv/duelist_groundz
  5. All that you need to do to start a team is just have 4 to 10 different members on it (including yourself). On DuelistGroundz, we have two different formats for wars, current format and goat format, so you’ll have to decide which format your team will play. Once you’ve decided, simply post below with your team name, format, and team lineup. It’s worth noting that every member of your team must join our discord channel (invite here), so post their discord name as well. Here’s an example below: Team name: Actual Literal Nuts Formats: Current Lineup: - ACP / (ACP’s discord name) - A duelist / (A duelist’s discord name) - The best duelist / (The best duelist’s discord name) - Another duelist / (Another duelist’s discord name) - Some random / (Some random’s discord name) - The GOAT / (The GOAT’s discord name) - A player / (A player’s discord name) In this particular example, my team has 7 members, and I’ve made sure to post their discord names. After making this post, we’ll create a discord role for your team (so that people can easily tag everyone on your team) and then you should start a team thread in this forum. The thread should include your team’s lineup (including discord names) and you should use it to keep track of your team’s record (linking to war threads as confirmation of your record). In the thread title, you could use put the format(s) that your team plays in brackets. Other teams will then use your thread to issue you challenges in your format(s) of choice. Also, if you are a current/goats team, you should specify which of your team members play which particular format(s). This thread may also be used to ask any questions that you have about the formation of teams. Frequently Asked Questions Q: Can I be a member of multiple teams? A: Only if you are a member of one team that is a current format team and another team that is a goat format team. Otherwise, no. Q: Can I lead multiple teams? A: At the moment, only if one of them is a current format team and the other is a goat format team. Otherwise, no. Q: Can I make an alliance with another team? A: For now, yes, as long as you do not make any agreements to unfairly manipulate match or war results (ie throwing matches). Q: Can I be the leader of a team but not play any matches? A: A team captain is held to the same activity standards as an ordinary team member. You should expect to play with the same frequency that is expected of any other member of your team. Q: Can I decide to change the formats that my team plays? A: Yes, assuming that the rest of your team is ok with that. For example, perhaps you started a current/goats team but found out that your team members didn’t really like the current format anymore. It would then be ok to change your team to a goats only team.
  6. A few days ago, I started a satire facebook page called "Yu-Gi-Oh Department of Konami". The style of humor is largely influenced by Ben Palmer, the comedian behind the satire pages Hope This Helps and City of Atlanta. The satire is incredibly subtle, to the point that virtually no Yugioh players are able to pick up on it. My first couple of posts on the page did not draw much attention, but my most recent one about "diversity" is drawing a lot of attention from upset Yugioh players who don't exactly agree with "Konami's" take on the situation. The comment thread has gotten exceptionally large at this point, so I'll just link you to it rather than trying to screenshot everything. Some of the comments are absolute gold: Once the page has built up a significant following I do plan to use it to make some subtle advertisements for DuelistGroundz I'd recommend sharing its posts whenever you get the chance to increase the page's exposure.
  7. Meme Format

    For those who don't know, DuelingBook.com added a create-a-card feature with its own room to go with it. This has pretty quickly spawned an idea for a new format... Meme Format Rules 1. All cards in your deck must be custom cards. 2. Games are played best out of 1, no sidedecking. 3. You need at least 5 people watching your duel in order to start (the more, the better). 4. The game ends when a player's lifepoints are reduced to 0 or another win condition is reached. 5. However, when a win condition has been reached, it's not necessarily the case that the player who won actually wins. Instead, the watchers of the duel vote on whose cards were funnier/more interesting/more creative. The player who got the most votes actually wins. Basically, think of it as a hybrid between Cards Against Humanity and Yugioh.
  8. Goat Duel Review Thread

    Post your DB goat replays here, have people give analysis on how you played. If there's something specific that you want to know (eg whether a play that you made in a certain spot was correct) be sure to post that as well. I probably won't have time to review most of the games myself unless I'm really bored and the game looks interesting, but I assume that other people would enjoy reviewing goat games.
  9. Statements like this fail to miss my point. Not because it's wrong, but because the wording of the statement implies that the focus is on "finding optimizations" without specifying how. The how is pretty important. Anyone can say something is optimal and we'd be hard-pressed to prove them wrong. Theory is a small starting point, not an end-game, for optimization, and you never find great breakthroughs through theory. Too many people don't want to test things that are "bad in theory" when in fact the return on investment if you found out that the theory is wrong would be incredible. Obviously I can think of a lot of examples relating to my own experiences here, but most other successful players have their own. People told me that 0 hand traps in Domain Monarchs could never work in theory and never bothered to ask themselves the question, "What if I cut all of my hand traps for more engine cards?" Same with Hoban's Dragon Rulers; he was the only person to ask himself, "What if I just maindecked 3 Vanity's Emptiness?" when everyone else assumed that something like that could never work. TLDR: ACP's Trademarked Super Secret to Success List all metagame assumptions on 3 factors: 1. How widely held is the assumption? 2. How high are the chances that the assumption is wrong? 3. How big would the consequences be of disproving the assumption? Then empirically test the assumptions that score the highest on this 3-pronged scale. Obviously, in most cases, you'll find out that the assumption was correct, but when it's not, the payoff can be huge. Of course there's an art to good testing too, but we'll assume that you know how to test intelligently. If you list, rate, and test your assumptions in this manner, I guarantee your average placing at high-level tournaments will sky-rocket.
  10. "Objectively correct ratios" - I'll send you a $1000 if you can prove that literally anything in your OP about ratios is anything other than opinion. You have no evidence to indicate whether 2 Desires or 3 is better, neither theoretical nor empirical. Like this phrase actually triggers me because you're trying to pass off your pseudo-intellectual nonsense as if it's some ground-breaking game theory. There's no shame in admitting that your opinion is your opinion, and stating otherwise is a toxic attitude that indicates that you care more about looking smart to people on the internet than being intellectually honest. Like I know you think I'm full of shit, but believe me, none of the stuff that you've posted holds any value or is relevant for doing well at tournaments. There are never going to be any deckbuilding rules that you can blindly follow to real success, and when people think that those rules do exist, success is most often found with figuring out how to get away with breaking them. The stuff that was deck-building theory gospel 10 years ago is completely outdated now, and the same will be true in another 10 years. 90% of premiere-tournament-winning decks get derided as being "shitty in theory." In fact, seeing a tournament-winning deck with no big surprises in it is like sighting a unicorn. People would really just like success to be much easier than it actually is.
  11. Playing a two-of because you don't want to see it too often is a perfectly legitimate reason for running a 2-of and I don't know why anyone would think otherwise. What evidence does anyone have to support any kind of statement like "You can only play a 2-of under X set of conditions"? People just want to have their shitty "theories" (which are really conjectures, as we'd say in the scientific community) validated by other people and then are so insecure that they get upset when someone dares to disagree with them. I also think that a lot of people put too much weight in certain decisions that have a relatively minuscule impact on their success. No one is going to make top cut because they decided to play 3 Pot of Desires instead of 2. There are pros and cons to both, and this kind of decision might boost your matchup against the field by 1%, if that. There are a thousand other decisions that you will make in that tournament that will be more relevant to your success. I don't think Roland Fang would've gotten 1st at NAWCQ 2017 instead of 2nd if only he hadn't made the huge mistake of playing 2 Pot of Desires. What people also don't realize about card ratios is that other than the obvious decisions (staple 3-ofs), the average player is making these decisions based on emotion rather than fact. For example, I made a pretty interesting prediction after Upstart Goblin was limited: that people would stop playing it because writing down 1 Upstart Goblin did not feel as mentally satisfying as writing 3 Upstart Goblin on a decklist. This turned out to be correct. Despite the fact that the "theory" behind Upstart Goblin being good remained exactly the same, everyone suddenly decided that they didn't like the card anymore. Although again, whether or not you decided to play a single copy of Upstart Goblin not going to be the deciding factor in your performance. But frankly the psychological aspect of deckbuilding is often ignored and very interesting in my opinion. A lot of people get really triggered by "weird" numbers on decklists, but apparently the person who just won this YCS is not one of them. Pro tip: Don't make the mistake that most Yugioh players make and pull theory out of your ass to try to justify what was in reality an emotional decision. It's hard to recognize in the moment that you're doing this, but as soon as you accept the fact that as humans, we're all fallible and subject to emotion, you'll become more self-aware and pick up on it more often. Do you have a hard emotional bias towards 3-ofs or 2-ofs? Then force yourself to try the other one for awhile. It's pretty hard to figure out which ratio is better if you literally refuse to try the other one.
  12. You don't win major tournaments by doing what is considered "optimal" and "the norm." Some people say that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results. In the context of strategy games, insanity is doing the same thing as everyone else and expecting different results. If everyone does what's "standard and optimal," then the only reason that anyone wins a tournament is because someone has to. Hoban was remarkably good at going X-2 day1 into day2 top cut miss for a long period of his career when he was playing super standard decks. Once he dared to break away from the norm and innovate, he was the best player of his era. Similar thing happened with me on a different scale. From 2010-2011, I mostly played obvious and standard decks like Blackwings, Plants, and Six Samurai, and was remarkably consistent at managing to go X-2 day1 into day2 scrub. Once I started playing what most of my peers considered to be bad decks in 2012-2013 like Chaos Dragons, Gishki, and Domain Monarch, I was consistently top32ing YCSs. In fact, the only premiere events that I did not top in that time period were a YCS and a nationals where I made the mistake of reverting back to playing a standard Rabbit deck. Oops! What happens to most competitive players is that they get stuck in long plateau of being able to consistently do well at locals but falling short of success at the premiere events. This is because the formula for success at locals is the exact opposite of the formula for success at YCSs. At locals, you can almost win just by showing up. With only 5 swiss rounds and a lot of bad players, you will find that by playing a top tier deck and not making any huge blunders, you will walk away with prizes far more often than not. People will be punting you match wins, and you just have to make sure that you don't punt them back. There will also be some competent players like yourself, but not enough of them to prevent you from making top8. For the most part, you'll all be able to stay out of each other's way and share the success. At a YCS, by the time you're 3-0 or 4-1, virtually all of the idiots have been weeded out, and the majority of your competition is people who are playing standard decks and aren't making any huge blunders. You've got several rounds to go, so if you're also just showing up with a standard deck and standard plays, statistically speaking, you're a huge underdog for making the top cut. You'll probably blame luck for not getting there, and you'd be absolutely right to do so! Remember, if everyone does what's "standard and optimal," then the only reason that anyone wins a tournament is because someone has to. But of course, there's another option here, which is just not being "standard and optimal." Want to know how to succeed in business? Know something substantial that your competition doesn't know. Do you think that Apple's strategy to develop the first real touchscreen smartphone was considered to be "standard and optimal"? Do you think that Zappo's strategy to sell shoes on the internet was considered "standard and optimal"? Do you think that Toyota's strategy to forgo the Ford-style assembly line and create a just-in-time production line was considered "standard and optimal"? Do you think that Netflix's strategy to sell people DVDs through the mail was considered "standard and optimal"? Do you think that Southwest's strategy to offer low fares, no fees, and no assigned seats was considered "standard and optimal"? Do you think AirBNB's strategy to create a hotel business without owning any hotels was considered "standard and optimal"? Do you think that Twitter's strategy to create a social network based on hashtags and character-limited messaging was considered "standard and optimal"? The principles here apply to any competition, TCGs included. Stop being lazy and following the wisdom of the crowd. Question your assumptions, abandon your fear of failure, experiment, and find something far better than what the rest of your competition has. You won't be doing what anyone else considers to be "optimal", and that's precisely how you'll crush the competition.
  13. Opt in/Opt Out Thread

    Read this first: If you want to see any of the politics-related forums, you must "opt in" below. If you no longer want to see one of these forums, you can "opt out" as well. A 50 post-count minimum is required to opt in. If you don't have 50 posts, well then start posting. So all posts below should be of one of the following forms: - Opt in: Civil Discourse - Opt in: Unchained - Opt in: Civil Discourse & Unchained - Opt out: Civil Discourse (only if you had previously opted in) - Opt out: Unchained (only if you had previously opted in) - Opt out: Civil Discourse & Unchained (only if you had previously opted in) If you cannot discuss politics without resorting to personal attacks, don't opt in to civil discourse. If you are easily affected by political opinions that you consider offensive, do not opt in to unchained. If you want to avoid discussing politics altogether, don't opt in to either one.
  14. Anything about your experiences playing the software can be posted here (ie along the same lines as the Dueling Network discussion thread that we used to have).
  15. being an adult sucks

    Aaron, I'm virtually in the same boat. Same age, same networth, same kind of job, same general life circumstances, same feeling of lack of accomplishment. It's certainly not hard, in fact it's brutally easy, which is what bothers me. PM me if you want to vent and get my thoughts. I'd rather not go into details publicly.
  16. Ok, I know based on the thread title you are probably thinking, "Is this real life?" but bear with me for a moment and allow me to explain myself.   I've been in love with the concept of Google Glass ever since Google announced its development. I truly do think it's going to be the future, and I wanted to be one of the first to be a part of that future. Recently I acquired a set of the Glass. Ok so you probably already see where I am going with this. Anyways, I've only had Glass for a day, but I quite like it so far. It seems like there's a lot of potential. However, as you may know, it is quite expensive right now. Like $1500 expensive. As a starving college student, I'd like a way to make that money back. I don't think it should be particularly difficult if I'm motivated and creative.   Coincidentally, I also recently discovered that I love sex. Like quite a bit. If I had to rate it on a scale of 1-10, it would be a 10/10, not close. It's very enjoyable and great stress relief. If you haven't tried sex before I would highly recommend it to anyone. It's a great experience for everyone involved. Well, usually, unless we're talking about rape or something. But even then, that goes to show how great sex is if people are willing to risk going to jail for life just to experience it. I'd even go as far as to say that the law of diminishing marginal returns probably doesn't apply to sex. I can't get enough of it.   Well they say do what you love, right? I think the circumstances here have created quite the perfect storm. Glass is very convenient for making porn seeing as it would completely eliminate the need for a cameraman. Also, I would particularly enjoy doing porn of the POV genre seeing as my face will not be visible, which gives me a bit of a layer of anonymity. No one's going to watch one of my videos and go "OMG that's Allen C Pennington!"   That said, seeing as it's something that I've never done before, I could use some advice. Mainly on the marketing and economic aspects. How much should I be offering a lady to make a video with me? I don't want to insult her with a low-ball offer (no pun intended). Then once the filming is done and the editing is finished, what happens then? Can I sell it to a porn company? Be an independent contractor so to speak? I don't think putting up my own site is a realistic option. Is there a youtube-like site that allows me to upload whatever and get paid per view? Last thing I need is to just lose even more money on my porn venture. I want to have a clearly defined business model here.   Then there are some other smaller concerns. How do I find interested females? I figure just going to a strip club and asking around would be the simplest way to go about things, maybe advertise on craigslist or something. How long should videos be? Do I try to film everything in one take or try to break it up into scenes? Are there any other variables that I haven't taken into account here? Is there a basic guide I can find that will go through each step of the process for me?   Pic related, it's me wearing my glass and looking sexy:     Thanks in advance everyone.
  17. Need help making porn

    The first 6 pages of this thread were amazing. I actually did make one sex tape with the glass but I decided to just delete it instead of posting it because I didn't think it was that great tbh. I still stand by my analysis of rape. If anything, the #MeToo movement kinda showcases the point that I was trying to make. The reason that we found that there was so much sexual assault in Hollywood and other elite communities is the fact that the culture allowed men to consistently get away with it. If rapists were caught and punished 100% of the time, I honestly think there would be almost no rape. There's a lot of sociological evidence to show that cost/benefit analysis goes into any premeditated crime, and I don't see why rape would be any different. Needless to say, if the rapists did not enjoy the act, they would also not be raping anyone. It's two pretty basic premises ("criminals consider consequences before committing a crime" and "rapists enjoy sex"), and yet people freaked out about it for no reason. I honestly think if we do want to stop rape in our society, the motives of the potential rapist do need to be given some thought.
  18. Applications of No Limit Hold 'Em: A Guide to Understanding Theoretical Sound Poker by Matthew Jinda (2013): https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B8LYKVcwcHQdamhvVXI5Y2NwcFk/view?usp=sharing Crushing the Microstakes by Nathan "Blackrain79" Williams (2011): https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B8LYKVcwcHQdclBHYVRMb2ZmQzA/view?usp=sharing Don't Listen to Phil Hellmuth: Correcting the 50 Worst Pieces of Poker Advice You've Ever Heard by Dusty Schmidt and Paul Christopher Hoppe (2010): https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B8LYKVcwcHQdcEk0cW1uSTdMd1E/view?usp=sharing Dynamic Full Ring Poker: Beyond the Basics by James "Splitsuit" Sweeney (2010): https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B8LYKVcwcHQdNVhBZUI0N002OHM/view?usp=sharing Easy Game: Making Sense of No-Limit Hold 'Em (Volume I) by Andrew "Balugawhale" Seidman (2009): https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B8LYKVcwcHQdNFlFYjhlTmE0UjA/view?usp=sharing Easy Game: Making Sense of No-Limit Hold 'Em (Volume II) by Andrew "Balugawhale" Seidman (2009): https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B8LYKVcwcHQdT2tNWlQyVDFXSFE/view?usp=sharing Easy Game: Making Sense of No-Limit Hold 'Em (Volume III) by Andrew "Balugawhale" Seidman (2011): https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B8LYKVcwcHQda1RIUVlIM25kSDQ/view?usp=sharing Ed Miller Miscellaneous Strategy Columns by Ed Miller (2007-2008): https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B8LYKVcwcHQdVmREYlN3dWhZVmc/view?usp=sharing Elements of Poker by Tommy Angelo (2007): https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B8LYKVcwcHQdeDlJNDk1dEFpQXc/view?usp=sharing Harrington on Hold 'Em: Volume I: Strategic Play by Dan Harrington (2004): https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B8LYKVcwcHQdN0U1RmwtM1RwSHM/view?usp=sharing Harrington on Hold 'Em: Volume II: The Endgame by Dan Harrington (2005):https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B8LYKVcwcHQdV1RDUF81aWpCSkk/view?usp=sharing Harrington on Hold 'Em: Volume III: The Workbook by Dan Harrington (2006): https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B8LYKVcwcHQdYzJTenYxdjAxZnc/view?usp=sharing Let There Be Range by Tri "Slowhabit" Nguyen and Cole "CTS" South (2008): https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B8LYKVcwcHQdX1RiZW5yMnEta2c/view?usp=sharing The Mathematics of Poker by Bill Chen and Jerrod Ankenman (2006): https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B8LYKVcwcHQdR2c1M3E4MlFwMTA/view?usp=sharing The Mental Game of Poker by Jared Tendler (2011): https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B8LYKVcwcHQdYTB6YUNfMm1OTXc/view?usp=sharing Small Stakes No Limit Hold 'Em by Ed Miller, Sunny Mehta, and Matt Flynn (2009): https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B8LYKVcwcHQdT1FNczMtbmFiSHc/view?usp=sharing Theory of Poker (Fourth Edition) by David Sklansky (2004): https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B8LYKVcwcHQdUk1CS3dYdGNDbTA/view?usp=sharing ACP's note: Posting at the request of other players. Please keep in mind, reading books will not magically turn you into a good poker player. That mostly comes from experience. Rather, the purpose of reading books is to introduce you to concepts that you can apply to your games.
  19. Wumbo

    https://www.usatoday.com/story/tech/talkingtech/2017/10/06/rip-aim-aol-instant-messenger-dies-december/739076001/ Get fucked
  20. Recently, in the online goat format community, an issue has risen regarding whether to allow the card Exarion Universe in goat format. Luckily, people on both sides of the issue do not seem to feel strongly about it, so it has not caused a huge divide within the community. However, it is relevant, it is a complicated issue, and both sides of the argument have not attempted to make well thought out points. Three Possible Goat Formats There have always been three possible goat formats that people consider playing. There are other possible ones, but no one seems to be in favor of playing a goat format without The Lost Millenium for example, so those more obscure and less favored possible formats are not going to enter the argument for today. The first possible format is without Exarion Universe or Cybernetic Revolution. This is the format that I favor. Historically speaking, SJC New Jersey, SJC Charlotte, US Nationals, SJC Seattle, and SJC Indianapolis were played with this format. Then there’s the format with both Exarion Universe and Cybernetic Revolution. Historically speaking, SJC Boston was played with this format. And that brings us to the last format, the one is appears to have the favor of the online community currently, goat format without Cybernetic Revolution and with Exarion Universe. Historically speaking, no premier events were played with this format. This begs the question, what’s up with that exactly? Where Exarion Universe and Cybernetic Revolution Fit Into Yugioh History One issue was that it was not clear if a format with Exarion Universe and without Cybernetic Revolution had actually ever existed in real life. Exarion Universe was first officially released in the TCG on September 1st, 2005. Cybernetic Revolution was first officially released in the TCG on August 17th, 2005. However, at this time, booster sets were not immediately legal upon their release. We know that SJC Indianapolis was held just three days later, on August 20th, and Cybernetic Revolution was not legal then. Personally, I recall that booster sets were made legal two weeks after their official release. The UDE web archive confirms this: http://web.archive.org/web/20051026025152/http://www.upperdeckentertainment.com/yugioh/en/products.aspx Interestingly enough, this would mean that Cybernetic Revolution would have been legal for premier tournament play on the exact same day that Exarion Universe was legal for premier tournament play. Why Does This Matter? Some would argue that it really doesn’t matter at all. In fact, I’d even say that that is a fair opinion to have. People do in fact have the right to play formats that never actually existed. However, for some, playing past formats has a nostalgic value, and they would prefer their formats to be historically accurate. This particularly applies to those who were actually playing competitive yugioh in 2005, but I realize that this is 2015 and that those people are a minority. Now that DuelistGroundz.com’s retro format community is growing, we are beginning to delve into many retro formats, and we generally air on the side of historical accuracy. For example, it’s finally starting to become accepted that allowing OTK decks is more fair to the community. There are of course some exceptions. For example, I would advocate banning Crush Card Virus in the September 1, 2007 Perfect Circle format. This is because that I feel that Crush Card Virus adds significantly more luck to the format in such a way that it outweighs the need for historical accuracy (and really there's no way to be historically accurate in the strictest sense, unless we give only 1% of the players the ability to use the card). Exarion Universe however goes in the opposite direction. Removing overpowered cards from the format in order to make it more fun or more skill-intensive is one thing. Adding cards to the format is another. Kris Perovic for example, once suggested experimenting with adding Effect Veiler, a card that was released in 2010, to goat format. No one took his suggestion seriously. The premise seemed ridiculous. But ironically enough, at the time he made that suggestion, we were all playing with Exarion Universe. What Do We Want Goats to Be Like? This is really the first question that the community needs to answer before the discussing about Exarion Universe can even begin. A discussion needs to be opened in regards to what qualifies as a “better” goat format. In general there are two components of better: more skillful and more fun. Goat Format is not necessarily the consensus favorite retro format of the community, but I feel that the people who play it do for very specific reasons. One of these reasons can be identified just by looking at the name of the format: Goat Control. It wasn’t named the Airknight Aggro format or the Tsuku Lock format. One of the defining characteristics or the format is control decks that revolved around the card Scapegoat. But why does this make for an enjoyable format? A part of this is the snail's pace that the games were played at. With many turns and often many decisions to make on each turn, this makes for a very skillful game. While we’re still playing a game of Yugioh, not chess, games were fought over attrition, and players had opportunities to play tight and come back from opening hands that were more powerful than theirs. This was in large part due to the card Scapegoat. The card was chainable and could single-handedly wall the opponent out of more than 3000 points of damage, and a followup Metamorphosis could completely re-stabilize the board. We want this to be an aspect of the format. We want Goat Control to emphasize very precise and deliberate play. We want Goat Control to be about planning ahead. We want Goat Control to reward those who don’t squander their advantage and are able to claw back into the game from behind. Not only do we play Goat Format to reward duelists with tight, technical play, we also want it to reward those with good deck construction fundamentals as well. We don’t want to play a 100% solved format. Like technical play, which is about players gaining slow incremental advantages over each other, deck construction should also emphasize these small edges. While technical play may emphasize the conservation of the staple power cards, deck construction should reward those who find the small but useful tech for a given field. Whether it’s those who play Mystic Tomato in a field full of Dekoichis, or those who decide to play the third Sakuretsu Armor as a hedge against aggro, every card in your deck should have a reason behind it, and lists should be slightly evolving from month to month. What Does Exarion Do To The Format? First and foremost, it is a counter to Scapegoat. This isn’t inherently a bad thing; counters to cards should exist. However, when you compare Exarion Universe to other counters that exist to Scapegoat, you’ll start to see a lot of differences. The other playable counters to Scapegoat in the format are Airknight Parshath, Asura Priest, King Tiger Wanghu, and Enraged Battle Ox. Airknight Parshath and Asura Priest are the two that can be played in a standard goat list, whereas King Tiger Wanghu and Enraged Battle Ox are build around cards. Airknight Parshath is in some sense similar to Exarion Universe. It has similar stats. It has trample. It’s chaos-typed. Of course the one glaring difference is the fact that Airknight Parshath requires a tribute. While Airknight Parshath can bury the opponent in card advantage if it goes unchecked for several turns, it inherently requires more investment and setup. Specifically, it requires a tribute. If you’re tributing for it, you want that tribute to be either a floater or a 0/0 Thousand-Eyes Restrict. Otherwise you want to discard it and revive it. Even if you do manage to minimize the investment required, you still aren’t happy if it just gets hit by a Sakuretsu Armor. Even if your attack does get through, the tables can be turned instantly if your opponent has Snatch Steal. Airknight Parshath is the definition of high risk, high reward. It’s a very powerful card, but it demands that you know how to use it in order to get mileage out of it. The tribute that is attached to it makes it play very differently than Exarion Universe in practice. If you’re a goat control player packing three copies of Scapegoat, you’re not going to feel bad about it if your opponent just has two copies of Airknight. Asura Priest of course has the issue that it’s a spirit monster. People already want to be playing two copies of Tsukuyomi, and spirit monsters tend to clog hands. Asura Priest is great at getting through some incremental damage but at the cost of not actually developing your board. While I don’t often like to use the word “tempo” in the context of Yugioh, the difference between cards like Exarion Universe and Asura Priest is all tempo. I can summon an Exarion Universe, attack, and then next turn attack with Exarion Universe again, but also set Magician of Faith. Now my opponent is left with two very important monsters that they have to deal with. Asura Priest restricts you to either do one or the other. King Tiger Wanghu and Enraged Battle Ox don’t even deserve separate discussions from each other. In fact, they often belong in the same deck. Anti-Meta decks are great for most Yugioh formats. Especially when they don’t even beat the meta more than 60% of the time. Enraged Battle Ox is weak to Tsukuyomi. King Tiger Wangnu demands that you build around what is on the surface a symmetric ability. These of cards require an opportunity cost. If I want to counter the Scapegoat/Metamorphosis/Black Luster Soldier deck, I can’t run those cards myself. That alone is enough to dissuade most people from making that kind of commitment. Exarion Universe however, doesn’t require itself to be built around. It doesn’t cost you a monster or your board development. It’s chaos-typed. It functions well on both offense and defense. Losing 400 attack for trample is barely even a cost. We’re talking about a card that has almost no opportunity cost. As goat format became more explored, Exarion Universe went from “pretty good” to ubiquitous. I’ll now address the elephant in the room. This, specifically, is what Exarion Universe does to the format: The main difference between Exarion goats and Exarion-less goats is the fact that Scapegoat is actively bad in the Exarion goat metagame. Scapegoat goes from the best defensive card in the format to just a card that sets up Metamorphosis plays. I can tell you one of the main differences between Exarion goats and Exarion-less goats is that Exarion goat games end a lot faster. I’m talking both in terms of the turn that the game actually ends but also the turn that one player gains insurmountable advantage. A primary issue here is the fact that Exarion can often get in free, early damage that other monsters in the format cannot really do. Protecting your life points in goats is very crucial, the card Scapegoat plays a huge role in this, and Exarion Universe completely undermines that in a way that no one other card in the format does. My best of 7 match vs Kris Perovic with this deck is very non-representative of the actual theoretical matchup between our decks: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gULz2PxYHRU. By that I mean that Kris probably should’ve crushed me 4-1 or 4-2. He played better and had the better deck. In general, I feel that because of the fact that damage is easier to inflict in a format with Exarion, the games are inherently higher variance. It’s easier to steal games with Ring of Destruction or Black Luster Soldier. I also feel that since Exarion Universe is a very scary and usually aggressive monster, it demands that players run multiple Sakuretsu Armor. This leads to gamestates being simplified faster, where topdecking comes more into play. Having watched my games with Kris, I notice that luck played a bigger role than I would’ve expected initially, particularly in the games that I won. Props go to Kris Perovic, as I think he is really the first person to soft-solve a goat format. Assuming that the sideboard was constructed appropriately for a field that includes OTKs, I believe that we’re looking at one of the only goat lists possible that could argue to have a 50%+ matchup versus every other possible deck in the field. Have solutions been proposed to the boogeyman of the format? Of course. But if anything, they only further emphasize the issues with the format. Yes folks, that’s one Scapegoat. One. Does this deck beat Kris’s list 51% of the time? Quite possibly. Let’s move on. Flaws In The Design of Exarion Universe Something that I’ve noticed is that, in an Exarion-less format, decklists are far more varied, and monster lineups in particular require a lot more thought. Let me start with what consider the skeleton to be for your average good-stuff Exarion-less goat deck. Monsters: 10 1 Black Luster Soldier - Envoy of the Beginning 1 Airknight Parshath 1 Sangan 1 Sinister Serpent 1 Breaker the Magical Warrior 1 Tribe-Infecting Virus 2 Magician of Faith 2 Tsukuyomi Spells: 15 2 Book of Moon 2 Nobleman of Crossout 2 Scapegoat 2 Metamorphosis 1 Pot of Greed 1 Graceful Charity 1 Delinquent Duo 1 Heavy Storm 1 Mystical Space Typhoon 1 Snatch Steal 1 Premature Burial Traps: 5 1 Mirror Force 1 Torrential Tribute 1 Ring of Destruction 1 Call of the Haunted 1 Sakuretsu Armor Some of these cards are debatable. Is the second copy of Tsukuyomi 100% necessary? Is at least one Sakuretsu Armor 100% necessary? I would argue yes, but if you remove them both it doesn’t change the point that I’m trying to make. In most cases, I would argue for playing 17 monsters and 23 spells/traps. This means that 59% of our monster lineup will be composed of staples, and 87% of our spell/trap lineup will be composed of staples. Because of this, correctly constructing your monster lineup involves a lot more thought than your spell/trap lineup. We can't do anything to make the spell/trap lineup construction require more thought, but we can at least attempt to preserve the skill of the monster lineup construction. Here are a list of cards that I have observed to be effective in your average Exarion-less goat deck that I would argue are almost entirely unplayable in the world of Exarion Universe: - Blade Knight - Asura Priest - D.D. Assailant - Mystic Tomato - Big Shield Gardna - Apprentice Magician - Skilled White Magician - Dekoichi, the Battlechanted Locomotive - Spirit Reaper - Kycoo the Ghost Destroyer It is also debatable whether D.D. Warrior Lady is playable in a format with Exarion Universe. Personally, I still play it, but the community seems to mostly disagree with my assessment. If you want, you can add that to the list too. Overall, Exarion Universe adds a lot of uniformity to the way that decks are constructed. If you look at Kris’s list, there is not much to debate changing. If someone told me to cut one of his monsters for Blade Knight or Spirit Reaper, I would call them crazy. In the case of some of these monsters, it’s because they are just worse aggressive options than Exarion Universe (Blade Knight, Kycoo the Ghost Destroyer, Asura Priest, D.D. Assailant). In the case of Skilled White Magician, it’s because it’s a worse defensive option. For others like Apprentice Magician and Dekoichi, the Battlechanted Locomotive, it’s because they are just not as strong in the context of the format, and there is an opportunity cost to adding these cards to your deck. In the case of Spirit Reaper, it just gets hard-countered by Exarion Universe. Interestingly, Exarion Universe compounds the issue of monster lineup deck construction by making Magical Merchant a near-staple, which might not be obvious at first. This is because Thousand-Eyes Restrict is great vs Exarion Universe, but Scapegoat is very poor against it. Because of that, we see that Magical Merchant is completely necessary in the optimal goat control list. There’s another key design flaw to Exarion Universe that I think almost everyone is overlooking. The best counter to Exarion Universe is Exarion Universe. I’m not talking about a hard counter here. I don’t mean to say that the second person to summon an Exarion Universe wins the game. I also don’t mean to say that having an Exarion Universe of your own in the presence of your opponent’s Exarion Universe is better than having a Snatch Steal (although if your opponent has Book of Moon, it actually is better). I’m really referencing to the dominant stats of Exarion Universe that monsters other than itself cannot boast. For example, I would argue that Exarion Universe is better vs Kris’ stock list than Berserk Gorilla or Gravekeeper’s Spy. This is due to their respective stats. Berserk Gorilla gets killed by Tsukuyomi and gets walled by Scapegoat. Gravekeeper’s Spy doesn’t pressure the opponent. This is problematic, because it’s optimal to play 2 or 3 copies of Exarion Universe regardless of the rest of the field. In game theory, we would call this is a Nash equilibrium. This is the opposite of the predator/prey relationship that we observed between Spirit Reaper and Gold, Wu-Lord of Dark World in 2006, where the correct number of each depended upon the metagame composition. In Magic: The Gathering, we had the same problem after Bloodbraid Elf rotated out of standard, where the best counter to Jace was another Jace. This type of conundrum leads to stagnant metagames. Given that we would like to play goat format for many years to come, it would be preferable to avoid this, because metagame stagnation generally leads to dwindling interest in the format. Some people might be thinking ahead of me and want to approach the issue differently. Rather than play a format without Exarion Universe, why not just introduce a better Exarion counter to the format? Perhaps, one that outclasses Exarion Universe’s stats, but doesn’t die to Tsukuyomi? What if it also out-tempo’d Exarion Universe as well? In general, I would advocate against this kind of arms race (you might just replace your old problem with a new one), but I do want to let you know that there is an obvious solution, if that’s the kind of solution that you seek: The Bottom Line And thus I conclude that goat format with Exarion Universe and without Cybernetic Revolution is the worst of the possible goat formats. There are two good reasons to include a card in a retro format 1. It was actually a part of that particular format 2. You feel that the addition of this card makes the format significantly more skillful or enjoyable Exarion Universe satisfies neither of these. Therefore, I really feel that the Exarion Universe supporters do not have a leg to stand on in this argument.
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