This past weekend it was the ShiroKuro Festival at Pacifico Yokohama, a special event held by Bushiroad for Weiβ Schwarz, which this year was joined by Chaos TCG. Throughout the weekend a variety of special events ran, including Dice Schwarz, where new rules were added based on a die roll, Super Standard, where all cards were legal, and a Forbidden word game where you weren’t allowed to say certain words. At the event I’d been able to meet up with two of the players off the Facebook group, so we hung out and chatted throughout the day. I also had a chance to meet Mycstea, who has been a long time name in the community.
One of the big events was the ShiroKuro World Cup, where all 52 series faced off against each other to see who would come out on top. The series were divided into 8 groups labelled A-H, where they’d face off until only 1 deck remained. To try and give more series a chance, they’d try to pair the same series against each other during the preliminaries. The final results came out as follows:
A: Mai-Hime / Mai-Otome / Girl Who Leapt Through Space
B: Little Busters
C: Zero no Tsukaima
F: Love Live
The grand finals were between Phantom and Mai-Hime etc, but unfortunately I don’t know which series ultimately triumphed.
The event I opted to play in was the 24 round marathon. The event involved playing 24 rounds spaced out over approximately 24 hours, with only some breaks in between. The longest coming at 4 a.m in the morning. Since the event was split into two half marathons, and I had 12 decks, I decided that I would play each deck once per half marathon. I’d had some expectations beforehand about which decks would do well, and which ones not so well, but most of these turned out to be wrong on the day.
My overall Win / Loss rate was pretty abysmal for the event, not helped by the fact that some of my stronger decks ended up going 0-2 during the event. However, it was still a very fun, if incredibly tiring event. I cannot possibly remember proper details of every single game, so only brief accounts will be given here.
I wanted to start the day off well, so went into the first round with Lucky Star. I was facing off against Kantai Collection, which I suppose it to be expected, since this would be the last big outing for the fully powered deck.
I think I had a bit of a rough start, but was starting to be able to turn things around with the huge field presence the deck has. Unfortunately, triple Akagi Clock kick wasn’t really something I could defend against.
After getting off the a bad start, I decided to switch over to one of my fun decks, so it was time for Glasses to make its debut. It would be facing off against Canaan, a deck I’d never played against before.
I mainly remember the deck doing its weird Change from Clock effects and Soul Rushing me, which the deck can do with it’s +1 Soul to everyone Brainstorm. The Glasses deck was never really able to set up properly.
For my 3rd round I stuck with my Standard decks, this time opting for the No Attribute deck, which I’d upgraded only the week before. It could still do with the Kyousuke from the latest Little Busters! pack, but the Level 3 Saten would have to do for now. Over the entire weekend, I don’t think I ever actually played that Saten anyway.
My opponent for was using Gargantia, whose anti-heal would only be a minor annoyance for the deck. I think seeing all the weird No Attribute cards was a bit of a surprise for him, especially Kunikida.
I was able to maintain a pretty decent Stage for most of the game, with Kunikida helping to keep my hand numbers up. Touma was able to put in some work late game, hitting hard for only 1 Cost. A late game Chamber wasn’t enough to finish me off, and I was able to take the game on the next turn. Unfortunately, I can’t recall how I did this. I either used the Saten combo to power over everyone, or just pushed for damage with one of the plus Soul Climaxes.
For my fourth round I brought out my Usual Haruhi deck, which turns Haruhi into an unbeatable Reverser who can defeat nearly anything in the game. It would be facing off against the Alone variant of Vividred Operation. The fact my opponent had memory anti-heal was a bit of a downer on the deck, since that completely messes up my late game plays.
Early on I went through a lot of my Climaxes, which would normally be very bad for the deck, but my opponent never put down any particularly threatening cards during the early part of the game. This allowed me to build Stock and leave Usual Haruhi on the Stage. It wasn’t until the Alone arrived that it was time for the beat anything effects to kick in.
For the first time in ages I used the mill counter to reduce some damage just before Refresh, and then my opponent watched with great surprise as Usual Haruhi started reversing all of his cards and running away to Memory. Because of all the cards jumping back and forth, the game reminded him of playing Yu-Gi-Oh! instead.
At one point in the game I actually used the swimsuit alarm, even though it cost me 2 Stock, since I had an overabundance of Stock.
The game closed out with me using a deck Refresh counter to help cancel his final attack for 5 damage, then following up by attacking with 2 of the swimsuit card, and the Reverser support, because I could.
For my 5th round I decided to switch back to Neo Standard with Evangelion. I faced off against Kantai Collection again, this time piloted by a friend of my first round opponent. Don’t remember this game at all, except that things got a bit close at the end with the Asuka Climax combo.
For my 6th round I was facing off against Kantai Collection again, but this time with Robotics;Notes. Don’t remember this game, much except that I tried ending it with a big Airi combo, but it wasn’t enough.
There was a short break after this, during which I got a little bit to eat. We also received our first Shiyoko PR and first ShiroKuro Pack. I ended up trading the Love Live card that I got for an Etna.
For the 7th round Hayate and Tabitha faced off. I think I was ahead for most of the game, but gradually well behind once the Level 3 Hayate made it to the Stage. I think the game ended with me being on 3/6 with so few cards left in deck that I couldn’t use the effect of my Level 3 card. Everything rested on my final attack, which was cancelled.
For the 8th Round we were introduced to Dice Schwarz, which meant we’d be gaining a special set of rules for that round. We ended up gaining Twin Drive from Vanguard, which meant that our centre slot character could trigger check twice when it attacked. For this round Alien faced off against Clannad, and the extra Stock was a great help for the deck.
The Alien deck pretty much stayed on top all game, either attacking over his Clannad cards, or powering up with the Nagato & Shamisen counter. The extra Stock allowed me to gain even more cards with the 3 Aliens, and easily play 3 Summer Festival Nagato as soon as I hit Level 2. My opponent could only do 3 damage in response to that, which I immediately healed thanks to drawing the Climax needed for the combo. The game ended with me on 2/0 and my opponent pretty much out of cards.
Since we were now 2/3rds through the first half my deck choice was running low, so I decided to switch back to the last of my non-Neo Standard decks, the Miyuki Deck Out. I was up against a Miku deck, which was mostly Green, with a bit of Yellow
Early on I was able to gain Stock and cards, whilst edging closer to the Suginami combo. I remember trying to get Laharl & Mao to work, but being met with counters, so I couldn’t set everything up too early.
Eventually I got the triple Suginami combo set up, so it was just a matter of waiting things out until I was able to strike for game. My opponent ended up Refreshing with 2 Climaxes in deck, and throughout the course of the game I think I’d been able to get rid of at least 4 of them to Memory.
Once my opponent was in Level 3 they finally had ways to get rid of my Suginami, by either kicking him to Clock or Stock. In the former case this set off the rarely used 2nd effect of Scythe Master, allowing me to heal off the damage, and actually end up better off than I was before. This was a complete surprise to my opponent, who couldn’t quite believe what had just happened. I survived the turn, and managed to win by getting him to Level 4, since he had at most 1 Climax left in a 20+ card deck.
For the 10th Round I was paired against one of only 2 other native English speakers in the tournament, in a match that would pit Wooser against Guilty Crown. Specific details of most of the game escape me, but I can remember a few of the things that happened.
Early on I’d been joking that the Stock boost Wooser would end up putting a Climax into Stock, and when I payed it out this ended up being true.
At the close of the game, on the 2nd to last turn I’d been able to bounce away one of his top deck checkers (actually forgetting it had this effect…), which meant that his Shu failed to get his Clock kick effect on the next turn. Wooser was triumphant next turn.
For the 11th Round I brought out Log Horizon, which faced off against Canaan. This may or may not have been the same deck as earlier, just played by a different member of the same friend group. I got completely Soul rushed this game, taking I think about 9 in a row one turn. This was just a wash out.
I’d saved Visual Arts for the final round of the half marathon, because it’s quite a silly deck. It was paired against Kantai Collection, but they were running a mostly Red build, rather than one of the regular ones. I eventually beat them down with double Soul boosts, even going so far as to pay 5 to heal with the President.
With 12 rounds over it was time for the long break, in addition to our second set of participation cards. I once again ended up trading the Love Live card for an Etna.
I stupidly stayed awake during this period, spending the time either chatting via Facetime, or searching for some breakfast. I got a quick pastry and something to drink to keep me awake from a 7/11, then got a chicken breakfast muffin from McDonald’s, since it was the only place open at that time in the morning.
Round 13 started at about 8:30 a.m, by which point I was feeling pretty tired, and a bit worse for wear.
This round saw Alien facing off against Madoka, but I just wasn’t able to keep up. Early game was generally okay, since the cards are fairly evenly matched, but it started going downhill late game. I couldn’t pull off the big healing combo, and Madokas Level 3s are just too big to deal with without it. It also didn’t help that I was triggering all my Climaxes late game.
Round 14 was Evangelion against Sword Art Online, which went okay at first, but just fell apart at the end. The 8th Angel helped keep some of my opponent’s cards in check during the early parts of the game, but I don’t remember being able to do anything in particular during Level 2. At Level 3 I couldn’t win with the Asuka combo, and my opponent was able to throw more damage at me with Asuna than I could handle.
For the 15th Round I switched back to the Standard decks, this time bringing out the Deck Out deck. I was facing off against the Level swapping build of Milky Holmes, so at least I wouldn’t need to worry about their Power levels. I got into massive trouble with Climaxes later on in the game, repeatedly drawing them off Suginami, until half of them were in my hand. My hand was so bad that from 6 cards I was only able to Encore 1 of my Suginamis. As you would expect I wasn’t going to win under those circumstances.
For the 16th round I was late to my table due to feeling a bit under the weather, so I rushed to use the deck I thought would do well, which was Lucky Star. It was against a Fate (from Nanoha) deck, and I’ve pretty much blanked on this game, except for the fact I lost. The supports never got going properly, and I don’t remember playing any Level 3s.
The 17th round saw the return of my No Attribute deck, which faced a Saber deck packing cards from both the main Fate sets and Prisma Illya. Like in my practice games the week before, Miyako was able to punch over cards after Brainstorm. My opponent was quite impressed that I was able to get a free Brainstorm out of her too, thanks to the support cards in the deck.
My opponent was drastically behind on cards for most of the game, which meant I didn’t need any of the Climax combos to win in the end. They just pretty much ran out of resources.
For the three quarter mark of the tournament I decided to bring the Glasses deck out, spurred on by the success of the No Attribute deck in the previous round. Its opponent was Log Horizon.
Things went okay at the start of the game, which Kanji able to take out Soujirou during Level 0, and then Shiki’s Climax combo clearing the Stage at Level 1. Problems started when the Level 3s arrived, because the Glasses deck struggled to keep up in terms of Power. At one point I think I had all 3 of my global supports out on Stage, just to try and make Lit Club Yuki as big as possible.
After surviving an Akatsuki onslaught, unfortunately time was called so we both lost, and I was unable to see who would have actually won.
Due to running behind schedule there was no break at this point, but at least we got our third set of participation cards. Once again, I didn’t pull Etna, but was able to trade the Persona Q PR for it.
For the 19th Round I decided to sort of stick to the Glasses theme with my Tabitha deck, since she wears them on some of her cards. Tabitha faced off against a Symphogear deck.
My opponent started with the Tsubasa who gains Power and a Level if I have 3 or fewer character, which forced me to put out two of the vanillas, and 2 of Tabitha’s familiar. Fortunately for me, after this 4000 Power was too much for him to handle, so I was able to keep a strong Stage.
Once into Level 1 I was able to change up into the 2/2 and ride this for most of the game. They just couldn’t get over my 9500, and I kept on getting more of them out. Even Level 3s were losing to her thanks to the Counter. They were eventually just worn down from direct attacks, and help from the Wind triggers.
For the 20th round I returned to the Usual Haruhi deck, but it would have a disappointing game against Madoka. I never saw the Reverser support all game, which meant the deck pretty much fell apart. It’s a wonder I survived as long as I did, and even managed to get them into Level 3.
It was time to return to Neo Standard again for round 21, with me bringing Robotics;Notes back into the battle. I faced off against Miku for the 2nd time that weekend, but sadly it didn’t go as well as before.
All I really remember was staring at a hand of 4 Airi counters at one point, and then triggering a bunch of my own Climaxes during the end game. Sadistic Music Factory Miku was then able to finish me off.
With the end of the tournament nearing, there were only 3 decks left to choose from, so I decided to go with Log Horizon, since it should have been the strongest of the remaining three. It was up against Vivid Yellow, so not the regular build you expect for that series.
The early game went well, with me being able to defeat his cards and build up Stock. The problem was that I didn’t really have anything to actually do with that Stock. I wasn’t drawing my Level 3s, or my Salvage event, so I couldn’t keep up in terms of field presence.
For the penultimate round it was back to Wooser, who was facing off against idolM@ster.
During the early game the Loner Wooser was able to control the Stage for a while, until I was able to use the Level 1 Climax combo to gain more cards. Unfortunately at one point the combo failed due to hitting a Wind Trigger, but at least I got to bounce something. The extra cards help to mitigate the cost of Changing into the Level 3 twice, but even then I was starting to get a bit low on cards.
What really caused problems for me was getting stuck with 2 copies of the 2/1 that can’t be played unless you have 4 cards on Stage, and only having a Stage of 3 characters. I would eventually lose due to running out of Climaxes in an about 10 card deck.
For the 24th and final round Visual Arts faced off against Railgun. This was pretty much going to be downhill from the start, but I was going to try my best.
I managed to get 1 copy of the plus Soul support out, and just tried my hardest to hit my opponent with the two Soul cards as much as possible. I was even actually able to use the 1/1 support card for once, which was helpful in providing extra 1000 boosts, or burning for 1 damage. Unfortunately, double Gate on the last turn meant that I was unable to cancel enough damage and lost to my opponent’s next attacks.
With 24 rounds finally over, it was time to collect the prizes for the event, including a special Shiyoko PR suggesting you try for 48 rounds next time. My final ShiroKuro pack had a 4th Etna, so that I wouldn’t need to go looking for one to complete the playset.
After a final group photo for the remaining participants, it was time to leave and get some well deserved rest.