Thursday, May 17, 2018

Today's Card Analysis: Dragonic Waterfall and Dragonic Gaias

The Japanese Cards of the Day for May 18th, 2018, are Kagerо̄'s Vanguard Rare and a Double Rare from V-Booster Set 01: UNITE! TEAM Q4, Dragonic Waterfall and Dragonic Gaias. Kai's trump card from the climax of the manga's fourth volume was originally designed to give the most raw power in the game, a mark it's long fallen short of. The rebooted card restores Waterfall to its former glory by giving it the ability to override one of the game's fundamental balancing mechanics.
Dragonic Waterfall
AUTO [Vanguard Circle]: When placed, choose 1 of your opponent's grade 2 or greater rearguards, and retire it.
AUTO [Vanguard Circle]: When it attacks, [Cost: Soulblast 1 grade 3 card] this unit gets power +10000/Critical +1 until the end of that battle, and your opponent cannot call cards with "Sentinel" to Guardian Circle from hand.
The new Waterfall is designed to be used as a second or third ride after beginning the match on Dragonic Overlord, putting it in the same class as Soul Saver Dragon and Victorious Deer as an endgame finisher. Like Victorious, Waterfall requires soulblasting grade 3s as part of its cost, restricting it to the endgame unless you can randomly soulcharge a grade 3 off of Cruel Dragon's on-hit skill. The on-ride skill ensures the opponent is dragged down with you as you invest another card onto your vanguard circle, and allows for easy removal of key attackers like Maximum Raizer and Gigantech Charger.

Waterfall's Super Vanguard Rare print.
Waterfall's on-attack autoskill is the primary reason to run the card, and should not go underestimated. Like Overlord, Waterfall possesses the Force ability and Kagerо̄ favors putting its Force Markers on the vanguard circle to develop aggressive centers. The opponent will likely be exhausted from defending Dragonic Overlord up to this point in the match, and with two to three Force Gifts on Waterfall and a boost from Gojo, Aermo, or Raopia they'll be staring down a functional 53~63k 2 Critical center; Waterfall preventing the opponent from calling Sentinels means they haven o option to simply negate the attack. Even Protect Markers have the Sentinel keyword on them and so are not exempt from this, so the only means of guarding Waterfall is to guard manually. That's putting down 55~65k shield for two-triggers-to-pass, equivalent to two Heals and a Critical Trigger if 53k, or three Heals and an intercept if 63k.

As stated back in April, 53k is one of the most important numbers in the game because it is completely impossible to guard with less than three guardians except using a perfect guard. This means that Waterfall is at minimum a -3 for the opponent under optimal conditions, and more commonly a -4--guarding with three Criticals and one 10k, or a -5 for four Crits and a 5k guardian to make an 78k no-pass. Effectively doubling the strain on the opponent's card advantage engine when compared with being able to perfect guard means two Waterfall turns at 4+ damage will win the game, if the first turn doesn't do the other fighter in outright. It's simply not feasible to repeatedly endure Waterfall while still needing to guard the rearguard lanes.

The other Card of the Day is a fellow Tear Dragon to Waterfall and another of Kai's cards, Gaias.
Dragonic Gaias
AUTO [Rearguard Circle]: When it boosts a grade 3 or greater, [Cost: Counterblast 1, put this unit into your soul] the boosted unit gets Critical +1 until the end of that battle. (If you put it into the soul, the boosted unit does not receive Power.)
Gaias is a generally-faithful preservation of the original card from the manga. The original effect rested Gaias to give the boosted unit no power but increase its Critical by 1. Do note that because the additional Critical only lasts until end of battle, Gaias cannot be abused to give Dragonic Overlord 2 Critical on both attacks as Striken can. What Gaias can do is make Waterfall into a 3 Crit unit for a near-guaranteed on-hit win, as well as fuel the soul for Overlord's cost will increasing the impact of him hitting in the early game. You can also make plays like swing with a Forced Overlord unboosted for 33k on a rearguard, restand, then use Gaias during the second swing to guarantee a crit.

With this, the final Kagerо̄ lineup is at last taking shape.
Grade 1
x4 Flame of Hope, Aermo
x4 Dragonic Gaias
x4 Lizard Soldier, Raopia
x1 Dragon Knight, Burj
Grade 2
x4 Berserk Dragon
x4 Prowling Dragon, Striken or Spillover Dragon
x4 Dragon Knight, Nehalem
Grade 3
x4 Dragonic Overlord
x4 Dragonic Waterfall
Accounting for Oracle Think Tank likely getting a grade 1 perfect guard as a Single Rare and 4 trigger units along with Lozenge Magus for their grade 0 Commons, Kagerо̄ has just 2~4 cards left to reveal in the set, all at C rarity.

"Ride the Vanguard! Water Spirit Dragon, show yourself from within the fountain!"
The previous Japanese Card of the Day was Conjurer of Mithril.

V-Booster Set 01: UNITE! TEAM Q4 will launch in Japan May 25th, 2018, and in English June 22nd. It will be accompanied by sleeves based on Dragonic Overlord and Blaster Blade. V-Trial Deck 01: Sendou Aichi and V-TD02: Kai Toshiki will launch in English June 8th.

The first Extra Booster set of Standard, V-EB01: The Destructive Roar will launch in Japan June 29th, 2018, and August 2nd for the English-speaking world. The accompanying new anime series, codenamed "Origin," began airing May 5th, with an English-subtitled simulcast on both YouTube and Crunchyroll.