Welcome back to part 2 of the remaining themed cards. We’ll be starting things off with the new Dark cards.
Dark is one of the most supported types in the game and has plenty of very powerful monsters, themes and support cards, so it’s no surprise this set gives them even more support.
Dark Mambele: Normal Spell Card
If you control 3 or more DARK monsters: Target 1 face-up card on the field; banish it.
This is apparently meant to be Dark Armed Dragon’s signature attack, but it’s nowhere near as good as he is. Chances are if you control 3 or more Darks already there’s very little that you wouldn’t already be able to handle with them. It’s likely that this sort of effect would be most useful in the times you don’t have enough monsters on the field to even use it. With plenty of generic removal out there I don’t see this card as worth using.
Creeping Darkness: Normal Spell Card
Banish 2 DARK monsters in your Graveyard; add 1 Level 4 DARK monster from your Deck to your hand.
This is an interesting Dark Reinforcement of the Army. If the text is correct it unfortunately can’t search for monsters below level 4 which is disappointing. Otherwise you could for example fetch Tour Guide, use her to make Leviair and then bring back one of the monsters you just banished. But you can’t do that. As it stands it could be useful for a dark deck focused on level 4s that abuses banished cards, but we don’t see much of that right now. It could be fun to use it to banish two Scout Planes in a Cosmos deck though.
Mist Valley are a Hidden Arsenal theme all about bouncing. Whilst they’ve never made any real impact on the game some cards like Mist Valley Falcon can be fun for abusing continuous Spell and Trap cards.
Shrine of Mist Valley: Field Spell Card
Once per turn, when a WIND monster is destroyed by a card effect and sent to the Graveyard: You can Special Summon 1 Level 3 or lower WIND monster from your hand or Deck. That monster’s effect(s) is negated.
Obviously with this card you want to be summoning them from the deck whenever possible, since it stops you from losing cards. This card can help you end games, by making it so cards like Mirror Force or Torrential Tribute can’t protect your opponent once they get below a certain amount of lifepoints. Outside of this I see it either being useful to get monsters with graveyard effects, tuners, or anything you want to bounce with cards like Falcon. Unfortunately it’s competing with Divine Wind of Mist Valley, which is a much more active aggressive field card, so it may be outshone by that.
Insects get a big boost this set from the Inzektors, but they also get a friend in the form of Danipon in the OCG imports.
Danipon: Level 2 600/600 Earth Insect
When this card is destroyed by battle and sent to the Graveyard, you can add 1 Insect-Type monster with 1000 or less DEF from your Deck to your hand.
Danipon is the counterpart to Gokipon, able to fetch the high attack low defense insects, like I suppose Jirai Gumo? Oddly for a battle recruiter it gets it to your hand, which is much less useful than being on the field. Honestly I don’t think it’ll see use in Inzektors and those are really the only insects worth playing, so until other themes come along I doubt this little guy will be seeing play. On the positive side I see it being useful in the Sneak Preview should you play some draft games and you happen to pull some Inzektors.
Once upon a time beasts were a force to be reckoned with through Green Baboon. Unfortunately in the West we never saw Baboon Drain at its full power, and then they changed how he worked, so he was no longer good. Nowadays thanks to Horn of the Phantom Beast many of them can once again be turned into a threat, although its often just used in TG decks now.
Vampire Koala: Level 4 1800/1500 Earth Beast
When this card inflicts Battle Damage to your opponent, except by a direct attack: Gain Life Points equal to the amount of Battle Damage inflicted.
This is a fun little card that can really boost your lifepoints once you give it Horn. Not really much else to say.
Koalo-Koala: Level 6 2800/200 Earth Beast Fusion
“Sea Koala” + “Tree Otter”
You can send 1 Beast-Type monster from your hand to the Graveyard to target 1 monster your opponent controls; destroy that target.
This is a sort of new boss for beasts, or more specifically Koalas. If you want to build a deck around this it would possibly be fun, but I doubt this’ll ever really approach being competitive.
Dark Synchros were a set of monsters used by the villains in 5Ds at one point, who all had negative levels. In the real game though they merely need Dark tuners to make them, since we wouldn’t want to get into all the problems of making Yu-Gi-Oh! players subtract.
Dark Diviner: Level 4 2000/1000 Dark Fiend
1 DARK Tuner + 1 non-Tuner Insect-Type monster
This card cannot be destroyed by battle. If this card attacks an opponent’s monster that has higher ATK than this card: That monster’s ATK becomes the same as this card’s, until the end of the Battle Phase. When this card destroys an opponent’s monster by battle and sends it to the Graveyard: Send the top 3 cards of your opponent’s Deck to the Graveyard.
Getting together the required materials for this card can be quite a pain, but once you summon it it can be quite a pain for the opponent. During your turn it can basically kill nearly any monster your opponent has, whilst milling their deck. Against decks like Plants this is a very bad idea, since it may help them. However for decks like Dino-Rabbit getting Rabbit to the graveyard is pretty good for you. Much like Spirit Reaper when worst comes to worst you can just hide behind this guy until your opponent manages to draw an out to it.
Dark Flattop: Level 8 0/3000 Dark Machine
1 DARK Tuner + 1 or more non-Tuner Machine-Type monsters
Once per turn: You can target 1 “Reactor” monster or “Flying Fortress SKY FIRE” in your Graveyard; Special Summon it, ignoring the Summoning conditions. When this card is destroyed and sent to the Graveyard: You can Special Summon 1 Level 5 or lower Machine-Type monster from your hand.
This is apparently Sky Fire support. I can honestly say I’ve never seen anyone play that deck ever, so I highly doubt this will see much play. Saying that it does actually seem pretty good in that deck should you choose to play it and manage to somehow summon Flattop.
The final themed support in the set goes to X-Sabers, a once mighty theme brought down by new decks and rule changes on a vital card. Konami have come up with an inventive way to introduce new X-Sabers through the M (or Missing) X-Sabers. If you know roman numerals you should know X is 10, so it makes sense for the X-Sabers to total 10 members, and gain an extra 10 from the XX-Sabers to bring them to 20. If you follow this line of reasoning it stops them adding anymore on, but Konami have obviously decided some of them went missing and never got counted.
M-X-Saber Invoker: Rank 3 1600/500 Earth Warrior
2 Level 3 monsters
Once per turn: You can detach 1 Xyz Material from this card; Special Summon 1 Level 4 EARTH Warrior or Beast-Warrior-Type monster from your Deck in face-up Defense Position. Destroy that monster during the End Phase.
Invoker is easy to summon for X-Sabers thanks to Fullhelm and Dark Soul, but he doesn’t have to be restricted to just X Sabers. Having no material requirements means you can easily put it in the extra deck for Warrior or Beast-Warrior based decks and call on it occasionally. I think the idea is meant to be to make Invoker and then use its effect for another Xyz or even a Synchro summon, since the monster won’t stick around for long, or do much otherwise. However you’ll need an awful lot of monsters already on the field to do this anyway, and I wonder if you wouldn’t just be better skipping Invoker sometimes anyway?
Thanks for reading all the way through, don’t worry we’re nearly at the end now. We’ve just got the remaining cards in the set to look at now and I’ll be finished with the ORCS preview. Maybe just in time for the Sneak Preview.