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How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Yu-Gi-Oh

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There's a pretty big CCG on the market that has fantastical characters, creatures, spells, and abilities, sometimes derivative, but all unique to that setting. Wildly popular, sometimes imbalanced, it's had a huge following for years now.

I'm talking, of course, about Magic: The Gathering. But Dave! This is about Yu-Gi-Oh, isn't it? Yes, it is. But right now I'm talking about Magic.

I've played Magic, and it's likely that a large percentage of our readers have as well. Every new block introduces a completely different setting: Sarpadia, in Antiquities and Fallen Empires. Ravnica, the city of guilds. Onslaught, where the game moved decidedly towards creatures. Mirrodin, where artifacts became the forefront. The Ice Age, one of the earliest expansions. From it's inception, Magic has taken us to new places with unfamiliar characters and creatures.

Dice Masters is also taking many of us to new places with unfamiliar characters with Yu-Gi-Oh and Dungeons & Dragons. And why not? Some will be familiar with the settings, but many aren't, especially with the former. I'm starting to see that this isn't a problem. Realistically, a Spiritmonger (MTG) doesn't really mean much more to me than a Black Rose Dragon (YGO). And if I didn't know either game, I'd have a hard time assigning a given character to the correct setting.

I tested this out on my wife, who does not know anything about M:TG beyond how to play or Yu-Gi-Oh at all. I asked her to tell me which game this character was from: Sarkhan, the Dragonspeaker.

Her guess was Yu-Gi-Oh. In actuality, that's a Planeswalker from Magic. I repeated this test with several other names she had many right, but many were wrong, too. In the end, six were correctly identified; five were not. Not too different from a coin flip, which she admits most came down to. I probably wouldn't have done much better. It was about as difficult as another favorite game, "IKEA furniture or Girl with the Dragon Tattoo character?" It's fun, and harder than it looks. Try it sometime.

We also looked at some of the artwork. In many cases, we wouldn't have thought "Yu-Gi-Oh" about any of the art we saw, although it does come straight from the anime. Some of it was obvious and a bit cartoonish, and the quality wasn't always what we were used to from comic art, but much was able to stand on its own.

Why should I feel differently about this set than I would a new block of Magic? I shouldn't. Or Uncanny X-Men? I didn't really know who Ant-Man was, nor Falcon, nor Emma Frost, nor Scarlet Witch. Yet I have the set and I love it.

I like the Dice Masters system, and if it looks like there is a quality implementation of it, with cool dice and abilities, then I'm going to chase it down.

I'm not buying into the YGO CCG, not by any means. But Dice Masters? Put me down for a starter and some boosters. I think I'll get some play out of it.
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  1. Trevor Williamson imported's Avatar
    Just because you're ignorant of an IP doesn't mean that others are. And, honestly, I really don't care for the YGO IP. I'm never going to, because I know what it is, it very clearly isn't Marvel or DC or D&D;, and I don't enjoy the idea of having to pay to keep up with an IP I have no interest in.

    My issue isn't that this IP exists, but that there's a push for it to be involved in tournament play, and I don't really want to have to shell out for new cards to watch as everyone uses that one YGO card to blend into the meta. I don't think there's anything wrong with liking this game. I just don't want it involved in mixing into other established IPs for organized play. And that's the way I feel with *all* the IPs announced so far. I don't relish the idea of mixing Marvel with DC or D&D; with YGO or whatever. I feel like OP should focus around one IP, and if you want a YGO tournament, great! Just don't tell me I have to buy into something I don't enjoy to remain competitive.
  2. Retro-Matic Gamer imported's Avatar
    Shouldn't be an issue. Like HeroClix, WizKids still plans to require teams remain setting-pure for OP. Even if your TO were to blithely ignore that, and/or you were concerned about lacking "key staples" in casual play, don't worry - there's nothing in the set that's so powerful you must have it to remain competitive. If anything, I'd say the reverse is more likely - a Yu-Gi-Oh-pure team would get creamed by a Marvel-pure team. There are a couple of neat gimmicks, but that's all they are - gimmicks, and not particularly effective ones. Feel free to avoid this set, then - it won't affect you in the long run.
  3. Dave imported's Avatar
    And I've been saying what Retro-Matic has been saying from the beginning even with mixing AVX and UXM. WizKids keeps a LOT of their OP set-specific. No one is holding a gun to your head and saying "you MUST get this!"
  4. Joe Smelosky imported's Avatar
    I hold these exact opinions. I've been telling people all of this for week, and look, people still argue that mixing sets is the worst thing to ever happen. There's just something about this game that causes people to lose it over new sets, it's very confusing. I even played yugioh back in the day, and everyone loved new set, and that game's community has always had a bad rep.
  5. Joe Smelosky imported's Avatar
    I hold these exact opinions. I've been telling people all of this for week, and look, people still argue that mixing sets is the worst thing to ever happen. There's just something about this game that causes people to lose it over new sets, it's very confusing. I even played yugioh back in the day, and everyone loved new set, and that game's community has always had a bad rep.
  6. Nate Smelley imported's Avatar
    I played in a YGO rainbow draft over the weekend. I was the only one there who had played YGO before, but everyone had a blast with it. It is mostly a gimmick set no doubt about that, but there were a few cards I could see myself using given the chance to do a mixed tournament. And yes a pure YGO team would be slaughtered by pure marvel due to the fact that it stayed true to YGO style, bigger cost=bigger power. And with it not having an abusable ramp builder, if the marvel team doesn't have pxg, the YGO team is screwed.
  7. Dave imported's Avatar
    I don't know about a gimmick. The problem isn't so much what could or couldn't beat a Marvel team, the problem is that certain AVX cards were just completely out of line.
  8. Jr Portwood imported's Avatar
    I hope people realize that verbally disliking a set because of where it comes from kinda makes you a terrible person. Not to be insulting, but if you go up to someone and tell them that something they enjoy is bad, then you've gone out of your way to make that person feel bad. Some people are of the opinion that they'll just leave the sets they don't like to the people that do. That's fine, as long as you allow them to play those cards against you. Otherwise it's like you want every set to be it's own thing. And while you might think that's okay, it's the same moral standpoint of "separate but equal," which we can all agree is wrong (if you don't, go back and look at civil rights in the US. As someone who got into this game recently, I am thoroughly enjoying my local community for this game; everyone is very friendly. On the other hand, based on what I've seen on the web, almost half the community is up in arms about playing yugioh or mixing sets. Honestly, this scares me, and I have trouble going to other stores to play because you never know what the people there are going to say/do if you want to play cards from different IPs. If you have a problem with IPs other than Marvel, why not think of the other sets as new characters that are originals from WK (in fact, they should do a set of that at some point). Then you won't have a problem with the cards, you won't cause problems for people who enjoy/play those cards, and you may find that you enjoy those cards too. Imagine if MtG was like this. Every format is block constructed? Sure, it may be fun, but how much more fun could it be if we mixed the sets? Oh right, we do because it's more fun to play the game we love because of its sweet cards and mechanics if there are lots of sweet cards and mechanics.
  9. Dave imported's Avatar
    Hey, we at TRP are 100% with you and are planning on giving all of the sets some love and the time they deserve.
  10. Giraton2 imported's Avatar
    I have not played heroclix, infact I have yet to play dice masters honestly, I'm still waiting on my starter pack to come in so I'm doing as much research as I can, its how I found this blog. I do have a basic understanding of what you are saying, but I believe, as someone who is more interested in the yu-gi-oh set than any other simply because of nostalgia (I quit yu-gi-oh ages ago simply because of lack of players around and horrible balancing), that if they wish to keep players who want to play with certain sets that are not part of DC or Marvel, they need to make what i have called before Franchise formats, official formats that only allow a set of a certain franchise, so just DND cards, just marvel cards, ect, and bring these formats to rather high level play, maybe not to the level of the pro format you speak of, but high enough to get players like me interested. I have a feeling that allot of old yu-gi-oh players who quit because of how the game was managed will be driven to this game, so if wizkids doesn't accompany for that, they may lose something out of this, especially evident with wizkids preview distributions to random popular yu-gi-oh youtubers.

    I hope that was understandable, I have the tendency to rant until I lose coherency.