Lots of Pirates, Scarce Booty: A Review of Ignition Assault

The latest Yu-Gi-Oh! booster set; Ignition Assault brought three new archetypes to the TCG along with the promise of an entirely new TCG exclusive archetype. With the current TCG meta not seeing any drastic changes in almost a year, many people have been looking towards new sets for a shake-up. While the last few sets have been somewhat lacklustre in providing us with this much needed shake up, people were hopeful that this set may be able to make up for it.

The core archetype released in this set comprised of the new @Ignister or A.I. deck, the Ancient Warriors, and the latest ritual deck, Megalith. While none of these decks seemed to, at a surface level, provide us with much in the way of meta strategies, Konami hinted at the promise of a new TCG exclusive archetype with a powerful gimmick.

Plunder Patroll is this new TCG archetype and is, according to Konami, based around the mechanic of retrieving monsters from the extra deck without using any materials. Not only did this gimmick seem incredibly powerful, as it felt reminiscent of powerful decks in the past, but the community appeared keen for a pirate themed deck after the sad reveal of Fur Hires.

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Previous meta decks like zodiac beasts were able to absolutely dominate with their ability to make extra-deck monsters with only one material, so our minds ran wild with the possibilities of this new deck. With their debut in Ignition Assault we can safety say we expected too much. While the Plunder Patroll deck delivers on their promise to summon monsters from the extra deck free of materials, the way it achieves this is by using the main deck monsters to summon extra deck monsters on your opponent’s turn. Already this limits the ability to abuse the mechanic as the strategy is slowed.

To make matters worse however, they can only summon Plunder Patroll monsters with the same attribute as monsters your opponent controls or is in their graveyard. Not only is this ability slow, but it is also conditional. Most turns will end on a single plunder monster with some backrow and in 2020 this simply isn’t strong enough. I hope that as they continue to receive support they will earn their place as a meta deck, however until then I’ll have to enjoy them for the pirate theme alone.

@Ignister is a deck that supports lore established in the T.V. show. At least I assume so as the deck has fan service written all over it. From the fact that it manages to squeeze in a monster for each summoning mechanic, to the fact that they have an over reliance on effects that trigger in the Battle phase for those cliff hanger moments, the deck is easily outed as a cool gimmick for fans of the show.

While a select few fan service decks have gone on to do great things like Blue-Eyes or the infamous PePe, I worry @Ignister will follow the path that most anime decks take, that of obscurity. The deck boasts some impressive effects such as main decked monsters that immediately +1 such as Achichi and Pikari who add archetypal monsters and spells respectively and even an extra deck monster that is able to soul charge back @Ingister monsters, yet I worry that the lack of extenders and decent end boards will leave this deck behind. There is a chance that the sheer amount of Cyberse support available will allow the deck to flourish in ways I’m unable to predict, and a part of me hopes this is true (mainly the part of me that has pulled this card and also likes money). As of yet however, I would hold out on expecting much from the deck.

The other two archetypes in this set are such a significant step down in quality from the low bar set by the other two that I barely have much to say.

On the plus side Megaliths have the rule of cool advantage by being a ritual deck without a ritual spell. Instead Megalith monsters use themselves to ritual summon, with the Level 8 monsters being able to act as ritual spells in hand and the level 4s being able to summon from field. Notably Megalith Och allows you to ritual summon any ritual monster during your opponent’s main phase which can be combined with some really cool ritual monsters such as Nekroz of Trishula or Magician of Black Chaos MAX to do some borderline unfair stuff. As for the ancient warriors, I’m afraid this deck is about 8 years too late.

The effect of these cards relies on sending Continuous spell/trap cards to the graveyard and is designed to synergise with Fire Formation Tenki and other Fire Formation cards that aid their beast warrior typing, however they use this gimmick to apply effects that are far too slow or don’t accomplish anything. The lack of useful extra deck monsters also hinders the potential ceiling of this archetype. While the other decks in this set have the unlikely potential to accomplish something, I expect absolutely nothing from Ancient Warriors.

While the archetypes present in Ignition Assault are lacklustre, the value of the set isn’t naught. The set still contains powerful one-off cards such as Lightning storm and a few new powerful Time Thief cards. Lightning Storm is without a doubt this set’s money card, and rightfully so. The card is, provided you control no monsters, either Raigeki or Harpies’ Feather Duster.

The TCG hasn’t seen a card like Harpies’ Feather Duster, and with the recent limit of Reboot, our options for backrow removal are scarce. That alone makes this card invaluable and while the Raigeki effect is largely pointless it still provides some extra utility to the card. Time Thiefs also received some support, notable in the form of Pertuna and Retrograde. Pertuna allows the deck the ability to consistently stack a trap under Redoer and Retrograde acts as a searchable counter trap negate. Time Thiefs already had a solid base on which to stand and these cards only make that stronger.

If I have hope that anything will warp the current format, it is the introduction of these cards. However, with these being the only cards of note, it sours the overall value of the set and can make it seem less than worth it. 

A huge thank you to Banter Toys and Collectibles for supplying us with a box of Ignition Assault for review. Make sure you check out their Facebook Page for upcoming releases and events.

You can watch the unboxing video right here –

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