For the latest in my line of articles on the fundamentals of Weiβ Schwarz, I’m going to be covering a type of card that you see in most decks, and goes by a variety of different names. This can include Reversers, Bombs and Suiciders to name but a few. Even though some varieties of the card don’t actually Reverse things, I tend to use that terminology. This is because Bushiroad usually goes out of their way to avoid saying people’s favourite characters die during games.
What are they?
At their most basic level, Reversers are cards which Reverse other cards when they themselves get Reversed in battle. This kind of effect is most commonly found amongst Red cards, but Yellow and Green varieties also exist. These latter two trigger under the same conditions, but perform different actions, such as sending cards to Stock. All of these effects have the same end result, which is to get rid of one of your opponent’s cards for one of your own.
Red Reversers, such as [Onsen Haruhi], will Reverse cards who defeat them, meaning that both characters involved in the battle will be sent to the Waiting Room later.
Yellow Reversers, such as [Kyon & Koizumi], will send the card that defeated them to the top of the opponent’s Stock, whilst sending the bottom of their Stock to the Waiting Room. One drawback to be aware of with this effect is that sometimes you will help your opponent by digging out a Climax from the bottom of their Stock. Other varieties also exist, such as [Yosuke in Yukata] who bounces the card that defeats him back to your opponent’s hand and makes them discard a card.
Green Reversers, such as [Summer Camp Noir], will send the top card of the opponent’s Clock to the Waiting Room, before replacing it with the character that defeated them.
To prevent these Reversing effects from being too powerful, they will usually be limited to taking out cards of their own Level. Thus Level 0 Reversers can take out Level 0 cards, Level 1 Reversers can take out Level 1 and below cards and so on. Most series have some variety of Level 0 Reverser, but these effects become rarer as the Level increases. Level 1 Reversers commonly see play if the deck has access to them, but Level 2 Reversers are rarely seen, even from decks which do have access to them.
Another variety of this effect involves Reversing based on Cost, rather than Level, such as [“Big Sister” Kyou] . Reversers such as Kyou are thus able to get rid of both Level 0 and Level 1 cards.
Other versions of this effect also exist, but they are relatively rare. This includes cards like [Top Brain of the Station Adachi] who can Reverse cards whose Level is higher than that of the person controlling it, or [Going on a New Trip Minatsu], which can reverse anything, provided specific cards are in the Memory.
Support cards which can grant this ability also exist, such as [Y-shirt Minatsu]. These will rarely appear in Neo-Standard builds, because it’s difficult to make this kind of effect cost-effective.
Why are they useful?
Reversers are useful because they allow you to deal with your opponent’s cards, whilst ignoring their Power. It doesn’t matter how much Power cards have, they can still be brought down.
At Level 0, lots of decks have access to oversized cards which can be difficult to get rid of in Battle if you don’t have your own. If your opponent opens with a card that has 4,000 Power, but you can only manage 3,000, then you’re going to end up down on card numbers. Reversers can get rid of these cards relatively easily, by simply ramming into them and causing an even trade off. You won’t be gaining any advantage over your opponent, like if you could win the battle, but likewise, your opponent won’t be gaining any advantage over you.
It’s usually a better idea to send Reversers into battle on your turn against the biggest threats, because it will deny your opponent an attacker on their next turn, and thus also a Stock. Leaving a Reverser out in the open will allow your opponent to send a less useful or powerful card into it, thus keeping their powerhouse alive.
The Yellow and Green versions are especially useful for getting rid of cards with Encore because they completely remove the other character from the Stage. They can also help with denying your opponent a chance to salvage them, at least temporarily, because they won’t be in the Waiting Room.
If you are able to defeat another card in battle with one of your Reversers, without expending a card of your own, it can be difficult for your opponent to make back the card difference. If the next exchange with the Reverser only involves an even trade off, then you’ll have secured the 1 card advantage you gained earlier. However, unless your deck has access to free power early game, via cards similar to [O-bento Duty Shinji], this is unlikely to happen.
The same general principle applies at Level 1, but it also allows you to conserve Stock compared to your opponent. Generally speaking, Level 1 is where you will start playing cards which have a Stock cost. These will usually be more powerful and have better effects than Cost 0 cards, to make up for this. Often the only way to take down a Cost 1 card is to match it with your own, or invest several cards in order to overpower it.
Level 1 Reversers on the other hand will allow you to deal with these Cost 1 cards without paying any Stock of your own. It will still be an even trade off card-wise, but your opponent will have spent a Stock in the process, whilst you won’t have.
The same is true of Level 2 Reversers, but the problem is that their usefulness is limited. They will usually be Cost 1, which means that trading off against other Costs 1 cards doesn’t gain you anything in real terms. Cost 2 Level 2 cards are rarely seen at the moment, with most decks instead opting for Changing to Level 3 cards, or using early play Level 3s. This can make it especially difficult to get something worthwhile out of your Level 2 Reversers.
Another contributing factor is that their Power is so low, that even Cost 0 cards can take them out, leaving the player with the Reverser at a disadvantage resource wise.
The above mentioned Adachi is one of the more niche Reversers, but can be very effective against certain decks. If your opponent relies on getting out their Level 3 cards early, then Adachi can get rid of them whilst only costing you a Stock. This can be a big gain for you, especially if they used a Change that cost them extra resources. Unfortunately, if they don’t play cards like this, Adachi is basically useless, so it will really depend on your play environment.
How do I beat them?
With Reversers, the issue is not how to beat them, but how to beat them without losing a card in the process, or at the very least only losing an unimportant card. The entire point of the Reversers is that they will lose in battle and take something else down with them. So you need to work to avoid this. Some of the measures mentioned here will not always be applicable, because often your opponent will use their Reversers on their turn, allowing them to choose what they defeat.
Since most Reversers rely on Level to work, the easiest way around them is to use make sure your cards are a Level higher. This can be done via cards which gain Levels under certain circumstances, which can include Loners, or cards like [Kung Fu Master Konata], support cards which grant an extra Level, such as [Off Time Makoto], or by changing into a higher Level card, such as [“Path to Walk Together” Chihaya]. Unfortunately, in most cases, these will fail against Cost Reversers.
Another way around Reversers is to play cards which cannot be Reversed by effects. Several Loners can gain this effect, and cards such as [Kotori & Honoka & Umi, Preparation for Christmas], or [Frau Koujiro] have it built in. This type of effect is most useful on Level 0 cards, because that is when you’re much more likely to run into Reversers.
Higher Level ones are less useful, unless your locals is filled with people playing Level 1 and above Reversers. Cards like Frau can still be useful because of all their other effects, but her immunity to Reversing will practically never be useful. Stopping Adachi is pretty much the only thing you will ever do with that effect.
Some decks can just get rid of Reversers outright, without having to battle them, through cards like [Contractor to Tiamat Wilhelmina]. Who happens to also be a Reverser herself.
Another possibility is to deal with them via less important cards. Red Reversers with effects can be 1,000 or 1,500 Power, depending on how good the effect is, whilst vanilla varieties come in at 2,000. Yellow and Green varieties on the other hand have 1,500 Power. Cards on the lower end of this scale can be defeated by throwaway cards, such as extra copies of support cards.
For Level 1 Reversers, the Power levels are similarly low, coming in at 3,000 for those with a positive effect, 3,500 for vanilla varieties, and 4,000 for those with a negative effect. This can usually be dealt with via Level 0 cards, especially since you’re likely to have more support cards now than you did back at the start of the game. Those at the upper end Power-wise may need to be dealt with via Cost 0 Level 1 cards though.
Level 2 Reversers suffer pretty much the same fate, with cards like [Tyrant Valvatorez] only coming it at 5,000 Power. This leaves them very vulnerable to costless Level 1 cards, and even a few rare Level 0 cards can defeat him.
Ultimately, the main thing you need to be concerned about when facing Reversers is that your encounter with them doesn’t leave you worse off resource wise compared to your opponent.