Call me Bikou. I have been playing this game since 7th grade back in 2002 with a few breaks here and there. In 05 I started attending tournaments at the local card shop. In those days I had very few cards that could make a proper deck. In those days, the game was much different to what it is now. In 7th grade my deck was based on raising Shadow Ghoul's atk as much as possible, much like Rebecca from the anime. I quickly learned this was not the smartest of strategies. By the time I started playing in locals, I'd managed to turn my deck into a beatdown burn deck using 18-1900 atkers such as Mad Dog of Darkness and Archfiend Soldier along with Ookazi and Just Desserts. With the Kaiba Evo starter I implemented Lava Golems and Shadow Spells, the TCG's real version of the anime's Spellbinding Circle. My deck was fun and managed to work fairly well even though I kept it on the thick side (I ran 60 card decks back then, continuing on through the first few ban lists).
IOC came, sending my deck running from the Envoys, Black Luster Soldier and his hated brother Chaos Emperor Dragon. The special edition (SE) helped quite a bit simply for the Gemini Elves that helped beef up my deck as well as Ring of Destruction that provided great removal and burn as well as trade bait. I managed to turn my deck into a psuedo Chaos deck by adding some lights to my existing darks, such as Thunder Nyan Nyan, and used Chaos Sorcerer long before others did since they were all focused on the Envoys. I'd also used Sakuretsu Armor long before others simply because I didn't own a Mirror Force until I traded a Ring for one.
I did manage to get a Black Luster Soldier and quickly turned my deck's core into a warrior/spellcaster one. I didn't manage to top during these days until the first ban list came and slayed Chaos Emperor and his annoying little bird friend, Yata Garasu. That ban list was great and allowed me to top locals consistently. My deck ran Zombyra the Dark (I still liked beatdown and Zombyra was a beast before Cyber Dragon came out), Ninja Grandmaster Sasuke as the core dark/light targets for Painful Choice. I also used Warrior Returning Alive so I had many ways to search and retrieve Black Luster. My Painful Choice combos always involved the same core: 2 Zombyra, 2 Grandmasters, Sinister Serpent, Black Luster, Warrior Returning Alive and Magician of Faith. If I had Magician in hand or on field I'd dump everything needed for Black Luster, including himself and Warrior Returning Alive and retrieve everything when I could. GKs saw play during the time but no one ever stuck with em. Recruiter didn't exist and the opponents (opp) had numerous ways to take down Valley (MST, Breaker, Heavy).
Once the ban list slayed Black Luster, I tried to maintain a warrior deck but eventually had to move on. For locals I used Rat box with zombies, eventually turning it into a Tomato box, still with zombies. The local shop closed and moved beyond my traveling capacity but a local sports memorabilia shop held tournaments every other week so I maintained connection with the game. I even jumped on the Zombie Master bandwagon. Those were fun times. After the sports shop closed, I fell out of the game for approximately a year around 07-08. I'd also moved towns during this time. I managed to get a Stardust, Red Dragon Archfiend (RDA) and Goyo Guardian tin which started me back in the game.
One weekend the local FYE had a mini anime con. I managed to run into some fellow duelists and we started a weekly gathering either at the mall food court or the nearby Barnes & Nobles. Both places eventually gave us trouble for hanging out there and our gatherings diminished while FYE still had occasional cons every 2-3 months, now including YGO tournies. The majority of the locals had decks that were on par with my beatdown burn deck from a few years ago while I'd kept up with the game, making my deck more trouble for them. Though there were a few who would give me trouble there were also others who'd heard about the con, came and wiped out most of us.
I'd missed out on Gladiator Beasts (Glads) and Lightsworn (LS). I know LS made a showing at atleast one FYEcon but the player didn't stay long for me to play him. I missed LS and TeleDAD at its peak but I spose that's a blessing. Around this time I'd come across an article by GeneralZorpa and managed to build a nice Monarch deck that fit my playstyle. I still have it to this day and enjoy playing with it but it's a little slow for the speed decks of today's meta.
I also managed to make a psuedo X-Saber deck as well as a Flamvell Cat deck at Rescue Cat's peak thanks to a few lucky pulls from a Shining Darkness box including Infernity Barrier which was promptly traded for the majority of cards that let me finish the Cat decks. Sadly the next ban list neutered the decks, leaving me scrambling to obtain Faultrolls to properly build Sabers and turning my Flamvell deck into a zombie hybrid.
While the Saber deck survived, the Flamvell deck didn't.
I've gone through many decks over my career. Gravekeepers (GKs) (original Chaos days and now), A Legendary Ocean (ALO) deck, Rat Zombie box, Tomato Zombie box, 60 card Chaos, Monarchs, Flaming Merchant Zombie Pot (FMZP) and a few others.
My current decks consist of Monarchs, Sabers, Agents, Dark World, Blackwings, Nordic Zombies, GKs, a partially complete Deep Draw Exodia missing the Rejuvenations, Junk Dopple and Machina Gadgets. On DN I have these decks along with Hopeless Dragons, Batterymen and Hieroglyphs (Holy Marked Dragons).
On this blog I'll try to shine some light on unsuspecting commons and combos along with the occasional deck profile.
Welcome to the Island of Lost Cards. Taking care of the unwanted and ignored.