Noah Greene: 1st Place At The WCQ With Burning Abyss

Noah Greene

7/6/2015 11:04:00 AM
 Comments

Hello! My name is Noah Greene, and I took first place at the Yu-Gi-Oh! North American World Championship Qualifier (NAWCQ). Before the event, the only goal that I'd set for myself was to make it to Day 2. Needless to say, I shattered my own expectations. This was the first World Championship Qualifier I attended, and I some would say miraculously managed to win the entire tournament.

In the months prior to the NAWCQ, I attended several Regional Qualifiers in preparation for the event. I placed Top 8 at several, but the two decks that I saw the most success with were Shaddolls and Burning Abyss. At first, I wanted to take Shaddolls to the NAWCQ, but due to the nature of the deck I decided against it. While Shaddolls were incredibly powerful and could create giant fields, they lacked something that every deck would need to be successful at the NAWCQ: consistency. While the deck had great potential, it had to draw Shaddoll Fusion or El Shaddoll Fusion to compete. In an 8 or 9 round Regional it was much easier to perform well, since you play fewer rounds total and the skill level of your opponents is significantly lower than at a Worlds-qualifying event. Those issues with the Shaddoll deck led me to see Burning Abyss as the better choice.

While I'd come to the decision that Burning Abyss would be better than Shaddolls, I was still left with one more issue: Nekroz. Undeniably the best deck going into the NAWCQ, Nekroz had taken up more than half of the top spots at every single premiere event this format. Nekroz had almost everything going for it: it had cards like Nekroz of Trishula, that when Summoned could swing the tide of an entire game; it had cards like Nekroz of Gungnir and Nekroz of Decisive Armor that put tremendous pressure on the opponent when summoned. But most importantly it had cards like Nekroz of Brionac, Nekroz of Clausolas, Manju of the Ten Thousand Hands, Senju of the Thousand Hands, and many more search effects that almost guaranteed playable hands.

Nekroz was a consistent powerhouse. However, the deck had one fatal flaw that was exploited by many: it lost to floodgates. Whether it be Skill Drain, Vanity's Emptiness, or Mistake, Nekroz simply could not function with any floodgate face-up on the field. That was the key advantage that Burning Abyss had. Not only could Burning Abyss run those floodgates, it wasn't hindered by opposing floodgates. With the deck's near invulnerability to the floodgate cards players were using to stop Nekroz, I believed it had a huge advantage at the NAWCQ.

When I was constructing my Burning Abyss Deck, I originally thought that the best approach would be to Main Deck as many anti-Nekroz floodgates as I possibly could. For example, I was originally playing multiple copies of Anti-Spell Fragrance. That seemed to be a perfect strategy, as I was beating almost all of the Nekroz players I tested against in Game 1. But I soon saw the Error of my ways as I started to test other matchups.

I realized that by playing so many continuous trap cards, I was keeping myself from one of the biggest benefits Burning Abyss monsters have: the ability to Special Summon themselves for no cost as long as you have no spells or traps on the field. Instead of playing a ton of floodgates in the Main Deck, I opted to run multiple copies of Effect Veiler instead. The only non-staple floodgates that I continued to run were Skill Drain and one Mistake. I found Effect Veiler to be a near perfect card in Burning Abyss, as it was incredibly effective against every match-up except for Qliphorts. After testing and tweaking my list, I ended up with this:

    Burning Abyss Noah Greene    
  Location:  WCQ - 2015-06-28 North America - 1st Place
Main Deck
Side Deck
1 Barbar, Malebranche of the Burning Abyss
3 Cir, Malebranche of the Burning Abyss
3 Effect Veiler
2 Farfa, Malebranche of the Burning Abyss
3 Graff, Malebranche of the Burning Abyss
1 Libic, Malebranche of the Burning Abyss
2 Mathematician
1 Rubic, Malebranche of the Burning Abyss
3 Scarm, Malebranche of the Burning Abyss
1 Tour Guide From the Underworld
Monsters [20]
2 Dark Hole
1 Foolish Burial
1 Raigeki
Spells [4]
2 Breakthrough Skill
1 Crush Card Virus
2 Fiend Griefing
1 Fire Lake of the Burning Abyss
2 Karma Cut
3 Mind Crush
1 Mistake
1 Phoenix Wing Wind Blast
1 Raigeki Break
1 Skill Drain
1 Vanity's Emptiness
Traps [16]
Deck Total [40]
2 De-Fusion
1 Fire Lake of the Burning Abyss
2 Galaxy Cyclone
1 Majesty's Fiend
3 Maxx "C"
1 Mistake
3 Mystical Space Typhoon
1 Spell Canceller
1 Vanity's Fiend
Side Deck [15]

EXTRA DECK

3 Dante, Traveler of the Burning Abyss
3 Downerd Magician
1 Ghostrick Alucard
1 Mechquipped Angineer
1 Number 20: Giga-Brilliant
2 Number 30: Acid Golem of Destruction
1 Number 47: Nightmare Shark
1 Number F0: Utopic Future
1 Virgil, Rock Star of the Burning Abyss
1 Wind-Up Zenmaines
Extra Deck [15]
Notes:


On Day 1 I arrived at the venue at around 8 AM. After finalizing and turning in my deck list, I sat around with several friends and played some matches to help calm my nerves before the tournament started.

After a slight delay, the pairings for Round 1 were been posted and all duelists went to their respective tables. Darren Dunston and Jonathon Todd Ross the voice actors for Pegasus and Marik respectively gave a small speech, and with that, time in the round had begun!

Round 1: Aidan C. with Nekroz
I won the die roll and elected to go second. My opponent simply looked at his opening five cards and passed play to me. At that point I knew that my opponent was playing Nekroz and didn't open optimally. Using Graff, Malebranche of the Burning Abyss, Cir, Malebranche of the Burning Abyss, and Farfa, Malebranche of the Burning Abyss I made two copies of Dante, Traveler of the Burning Abyss. I attacked directly for 5000 damage, set one copy of Fiend Griefing and two Mind Crushes. I entered the End Phase, and with the Scarm, Malebranche of the Burning Abyss that I had summoned off of Graff previously in the turn, searched for Tour Guide From the Underworld.

My opponent proceeded to Normal Summon Manju of the Ten Thousand Hands searching for a copy of Nekroz of Unicore. He activated Nekroz Kaleidoscope, to which I chained Mind Crush calling Unicore. That disrupted his Kaleidoscope and let me see Secret Village of the Spellcasters, Nekroz of Valkyrus, Nekroz Cycle, and Nekroz Mirror. He passed play to me, and on my turn I used my second Mind Crush calling Nekroz of Valkyrus so I could attack for game.

 Mind Crush
$59.34
$39.99
$19.46
Mind Crush33095
Set Champion Pack 8
Number CP08-EN003
Type Trap Card
Attribute TRAP 
Rarity Super Rare
Card Text

Declare 1 card name. If that card is in your opponent's hand, they must discard all copies of it in their hand. If it is not, you randomly discard 1 card.


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Game 2 I don't remember as well. I know that he chose to go first and created an established field that included Abyss Dweller. After grinding out for several turns, I drew a copy of Mistake. I then proceeded to use all my resources to clear his field, leaving me with a Virgil, Rockstar of the Burning Abyss and the set Mistake. I passed play, then flipped my Mistake in my opponent's Standby Phase. The only cards in his hand were Nekroz of Brionac, Nekroz of Shurit, and Preperation of Rites. He offered me the handshake and Day 1 was off to a successful start.

1-0

Round 2: Jeremy Barnett with Burning Abyss
Round 2 was very unfortunate, as I had to play against one of my best friends. We both knew what the other was playing, so we went into the match with no surprises. I won the die roll and chose to go second.

Jeremy Summoned Mathematician, to which I chained Effect Veiler. He set one and passed play to me. On my turn I proceeded to Normal Summon Tour Guide From the Underworld to which he has no response. I created a field of double Dante, a set copy of Karma Cut, and a set Fiend Griefing. On his turn he Normal Summon Tour Guide and used its effect to Special Summon Graff. I activated Karma Cut on the Summon discarding Scarm and targeting his Graff. Without the ability to Special Summon Burning Abyss monsters and create a field that turn, he knew the duel would end on my next turn and he proceeded to scoop.

Game 2 he went second. I opened with a Libic, Malebranche of the Burning Abyss; two Fiend Griefings; Karma Cut; and Phoenix Wing Wind Blast. I set my Fiend Griefings and my Karma Cut and passed. On his turn he Normal Summoned Farfa and attacked directly for 1000 damage. He set two cards and ended.

I drew Cir for turn, Normal Summoned it, and attacked his Farfa; he used his set Karma Cut discarding Graff. In response, I chained my Fiend Griefing targeting his Graff and sent a copy of Scarm to my Graveyard. After that, he flipped his own copy of Fiend Griefing, targeting my Scarm and sent a Scarm of his own to the graveyard. After that I flipped yet another Fiend Griefing! I returned his Scarm and sent yarded Scarm myself. During the End Phase I searched for a Graff and passed. After winning the exchange in the previous turn, I was far ahead on resources and proceeded to win the duel within several turns.

2-0

Round 3: Phuoc L. with Volcanics
This was definitely one of the stranger decks that I went against. I honestly don't remember any specific details from this match. I just remember that in Game 1 he opened very poorly and I won in a few turns. Game 2 I continued to apply pressure by summoning Dantes and then finished the game by chaining Fiend Griefing to his Royal Firestorm Guards, causing it to resolve without effect and essentially hammering the final the nail into the coffin.

3-0

Round 4: Vincent Y with Burning Abyss
Game 1 my opening was nearly unplayable. I opened with all four of my discard traps and a copy of Cir. I didn't draw into another monster for three turns so I just scooped it up.

Game 2 my opponent set one monster and passed. My hand was absolutely incredible for the situation. I started by playing Foolish Burial, yarding Farfa to banish my opponent's set monster. I then summoned Tour Guide and summoned Graff. I overlayed for Dante, milled three with its effect, and then proceeded to use Graff to summon Cir. I Special Summoned Libic from the hand and made a second Dante, this time detaching Cir and milling three. I used Cir's effect to summon Graff back out of the graveyard, then revealed Rubic from hand and overlayed for Number 30: Acid Golem of Destruction. After seeing the 8000 damage I had on board, he proceeded to scoop up his cards and go on to Game 3.

 Majesty's Fiend
$15.75
$6.43
$4.61
Majesty's Fiend82692
Set Primal Origin
Number PRIO-EN034
Level 6
Type Effect Monster
Monster Fiend
Attribute LIGHT 
A / D 2400 / 1000
Rarity Secret Rare
Card Text

Cannot be Special Summoned. Monster effects cannot be activated.


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He opened Game 3 with a Majesty's Fiend to my hand of four monsters, a Raigeki Break, and a Mind Crush. I set my Raigeki Break and my Mind Crush and passed. He attacked with Majesty's Fiend, and I activated Raigeki Break discarding Scarm. In Main Phase 2 he revealed Scarm to Special Summon it; I used Mind Crush on the Scarm; and I saw that his hand had another Majesty's Fiend, a Farfa, and a Fiend Griefing. He proceeded to Summon the second Majesty's Fiend. Four turns went by before I could out the Majesty's Fiend and I ultimately lost by being so far behind on resources.

3-1

Round 5: Jason P. with Qliphorts
I won the die roll and opted to go second. My opponent opened up incredible, Tribute Summoning a Qliphort Stealth and targeting his own Qliphort Scout. He activated it again and searched out a copy of Re-qliate. He set two and passed, and drew two cards off of his Qliphort Monolith's effect. I drew and Normal Summoned Tour Guide From the Underworld. He chained Vanity's Emptiness to the effect, and I looked at my hand of four Burning Abyss monsters and a Skill Drain and proceeded to scoop up my cards to go to Game 2.

Game 2 I opened very well. I made a Dante with a Cir on the field, set Mistake and passed. He activated Qliphort Scout and paid 800 LP, to which I chained Mistake. He set a few backrows and passed turn. After resolving Graff, Cir, and Dante multiple times, I out resourced him across several turns and managed to put lethal damage on board. Without Scout's effect Qliphorts are just at a severe disadvantage.

Game 3 comes along and he elected to go second. I opened two Mistakes; two Mind Crush; and a Libic. I set the four backrows and passed. He activated Scout and used the effect, to which I chained Mistake. He Normal Summoned Qliphort Carrier and attacked for 1800. I didn't draw another monster for four of my turns, until I eventually drew Graff. I set it and passed. On his turn my opponent Normal Summoned a Majesty's Fiend and attacked over the Graff. I didn't draw an out to the Majesty's Fiend, so the game ended on his next turn.

3-2

Round 6: Brett C. with Shaddolls
Game 1 we both opened very poorly, however after several turns I resolved a Skill Drain, and he didn't see an out in time to stop me. I took advantage and won a few turns after it was flipped.

Game 2 I continued to poke with Cirs and Graffs, making sure not to go into the Extra Deck unless it absolutely necessary (to avoid Shaddoll Fusion). I got my opponent down to 5200 Life Points, and he Summoned an El Shaddoll Construct using Shaddoll Falco, sending Shaddoll Hedgehog to the graveyard with Construct's effect. He searched another copy of Shaddoll Falco, Normal Summoned it, and Synchro Summoned Leo, Keeper of the Sacred Tree. He added back Shaddoll Fusion and then set a card and passed turn.

The only thing on my field was a Graff, but I had several Burning Abyss monsters in my hand. I Special Summoned Rubic, Malebranche of the Burning Abyss, and Synchro Summoned Virgil, Rockstar of the Burning Abyss. I used Graff's effect to Summon Cir from the deck. I Special Summoned Libic from my hand and overlaid with Cir for Dante. I used Dante's effect detaching Cir and milled three: I hit a Farfa off of Dante's effect and used it, targeting my opponent's set Falco.

 Number F0: Utopic Future
$7.27
$3.68
$1.50
Number F0: Utopic Future97868
Set World Superstars
Number WSUP-EN026
Type Xyz/Effect Monster
Monster Warrior
Attribute LIGHT 
Rarity Secret Rare
Card Text

2 Xyz Monsters with the same Rank, except "Number" monsters
f(This card's original Rank is always treated as 1.) Cannot be destroyed by battle, and neither player takes any battle damage from attacks involving this card. At the end of the Damage Step, if this card battled an opponent's monster: You can take control of that opponent's monster until the end of the Battle Phase. If this face-up card on the field would be destroyed by a card effect, you can detach 1 Xyz Material from this card instead.


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I summoned Scarm out of the graveyard with Cir, then proceeded to Special Summon Barbar, Malebranche of the Burning Abyss from my hand. I overlaid Barbar and Scarm for Dante, and then overlaid both Dante's for Number F0: Utopic Future. I entered the Battle Phase and took control of his Leo with F0. Then I attacked directly with Leo and Virgil, dealing 5600 damage to wrap up the game.

4-2

Round 7: Quy T. with Raccoons
This was definitely the strangest deck that I played against the entire weekend. My opponent won the die roll and chose to go first. Turn 1 he activated Obedience Schooled. He ended with a field of Number 64: Ronin Raccoon Sandayu and Naturia Beast. Naturally, that would seem to be an easy field for Burning Abyss to clear. However, my opening hand was three discard traps, Foolish Burial, and two Dark Holes. I didn't draw into another Burning Abyss monster and lost three turns later.

Game 2 I sided in all of my spell and trap removal and opted to go second. He started by Normal Summoning Baby Raccoon Ponpoko, which I Effect Veilered. He set a backrow and passed. I normal summoned Tour Guide and activated its effect, to which he chained Shadow-Imprisoning Mirror. I chained Mystical Space Typhoon to the Mirror and proceeded to make two Dantes. I set a Phoenix Wing Wind Blast and a Vanity's Emptiness. On his next turn he drew, shuffled his hand for several minutes, and then scooped into Game 3.

 Effect Veiler (UTR)
$89.95
$52.24
$42.29
Effect Veiler (UTR)58434
Set Duelist Revolution
Number DREV-EN002
Level 1
Type Tuner Monster
Monster Spellcaster
Attribute LIGHT 
Rarity Ultimate Rare
Card Text

During your opponent's Main Phase, you can send this card from your hand to the Graveyard to select 1 face-up Effect Monster your opponent controls. Negate the effect(s) of that monster until the End Phase.


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He opted to go first, and this game started exactly as the previous one, with him Summoning Baby Raccoon Ponpoko and me chaining Effect Veiler. This time he set two backrows and passed. I Normal Summoned Graff, then Special Summoned Scarm. I overlaid for Dante, Traveler of the Burning Abyss, and then activated its effect to mill three cards. My opponent Chained Soul Drain to which I chained Mystical Space Typhoon. He then activated Shadow-Imprisoning Mirror in response to my Graff's effect. I was fortunate enough to mill a copy of Galaxy Cyclone from Dante's ability, so on the next turn I banished it from grave to destroy my opponent's Mirror. From that point I built up card advantage until my opponent couldn't keep up, and won victory soon after.

5-2

Round 8: Alex M. with Burning Abyss
My opponent won the die roll and elected to go second for Game 1. I opened with Graff and Libic, made Dante, and summoned Cir off of Graff. I set Karma Cut and Wing Blast and passed. He Summoned Tour Guide and Graff. On Summon, I banished the Graff with Karma Cut discarding Scarm. He set one trap card and passed.

I searched for Graff off of Scarm, then used Wind Blast on my opponent's set backrow. I used Graff's effect to summon Farfa. I drew Mind Crush for turn and overlaid with Cir and Farfa into Dante, then used its effect detaching Farfa. I banished my opponent's Tour Guide and attacked directly for 5000. I chose not to overlay any of my Dantes with Downerd Magicans, keeping my opponent from crashing his Tour Guide. When my opponent drew the card I Wind Blasted on the previous turn, he realized he had no way to win and scooped.

Game 2 I opened up rather poorly and my opponent opened up very well. After grinding out for a while, I lost Game 2 since I was way behind on card presence.

We both opened up very well for Game 3. The duel grinded out until we were in time, both with very few resources left. On Turn 4 he passed with a Downerd Magician with a Barbar attached as Cyz Material. I was at 500 life points to his 4700. I had a Dante with a Tour Guide under it, a Dante with no Material under it, and a Cir in hand. I drew Libic for turn, thought about what I could possibly do to win, and then it hit me.

I Normal Summoned Cir and Special Summoned Libic. I overlaid for Number 20: Giga-Brilliant and detached Cir to Summon the third Dante out of the graveyard. I overlaid the two Dantes with no material and summoned F0: Utopic Future. I banished Breakthrough Skill from the graveyard to target my opponent's Downerd Magican so it wouldn't detach Barbar in the damage step, took control of it with F0, and attacked for game in time on Turn 5. This match was incredible overall, and was by far my best of the day.

6-2

Round 9: Craig B with Infernoids
Game 1 I won the die roll and opted to go second. My opponent summoned Raiden, Hand of the Lightsworn and milled two copies of Reasoning. He set one and passed, and during the End Phase he milled two of the smaller Infernoid monsters. I opened up with Tour Guide From the Underworld, made double Dante and set Vanity's Emptiness. I flipped Emptiness at the start of his turn and he had no outs, immediately scooping.

Game 2, he opted to go first. He activated Reasoning and I called Level 4. He milled about twenty cards and hit Card Trooper, Special Summoning it. He Summoned InfernoidDevyaty, set two backrow cards and passed turn. I open well, but he flipped Shadow-Imprisoning Mirror and I quickly lost.

Game 3 I opted to go second. Unfortunately for my opponent he opened with five Infernoid monsters and I won the match by Turn 2.

With that, Day 1 had come to an end and I was guaranteed a spot in Day 2.

7-2

Round 10: Jordan Palmer with Burning Abyss
Game 1 I won the die roll and took second. He opened with Tour Guide From the Underworld, made two copies of Dante, set a backrow and passed. I drew for turn, activated Dark Hole, and then summoned a Tour Guide of my own. I made two copies of Dante and attacked for 5000 damage. I put down double Downerd Magician and set Vanity's Emptiness. On his turn I flipped Emptiness and the game ended soon after.

Game 2 he elected to make me go first. Once again I opened with Tour Guide and made a Dante with a Cir on the field. He played Dark Hole and I Summoned Cir off of Graff. He attacked over the Cir and I summoned Graff back out of the graveyard. He set one backrow and passed.

On my turn I Summoned Rubic. He dropped Flying C on the Summon and my Graff Summoned Cir from the deck, which blew itself up and summoned Dante back out of the graveyard. I then proceeded to Tribute his Flying C for a Majesty's Fiend, and from there I proceeded to win the game.

8-2

Round 11 Mirac C. with Nekroz
Game 1 he went straight into a Djinn Releaser of Rituals lock and passed. I punished him by playing Dark Hole. I made a Dante, set Mistake and passed. I flipped Mistake at the start of his turn and he had no out. He scooped up his cards and we moved to Game 2.

My opponent made me go first, and I opened with a Mathematician sending Scarm to the graveyard. I set Mistake, searched Tour Guide and passed. He Normal Summoned Denko Sekka to start of his turn. I Effect Veiler'd it and he set one and passed, opting not to attack over my Mathematician. I drew for turn and he flipped Royal Decree during my Standby Phase. I Normal Summoned Tour Guide and Special Summoned Libic, Malebranche of the Burning Abyss from the deck. I overlaid Tour Guide and Libic into Dante, detaching three.

 Tour Guide From the Underworld
$20.70
$10.49
$7.85
Tour Guide From the Underworld40110
Set Extreme Victory
Number EXVC-EN084
Level 3
Type Effect Monster
Monster Fiend
Attribute DARK 
A / D 1000 / 600
Rarity Secret Rare
Card Text

When this card is Normal Summoned, you can Special Summon 1 Level 3 Fiend-Type monster from your hand or Deck. Its effects are negated, and it cannot be used as a Synchro Material Monster.


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I Special Summoned Rubic from the hand, negating its effects. I Tuned Rubic and Mathematician into a Virgil, then used Virgil's effect discarding Barbar to shuffle Royal Decree back into my opponent's deck. I attacked over the Denko Sekka, made Downerd Magician in Main Phase 2, and passed turn. He drew, saw he had no outs to my Mistake and extended the handshake.

9-2

Round 12: Fisher O. with Star Seraph Shaddolls
I don't remember much about this match. I remember using Effect Veiler on a Mathematican in Game 1, and using Dark Hole to out a Leo in Game 2. After I cleared his field in Game 2 I sealed the match shut with a well-timed Vanity's Emptiness.

After winning this match I was guaranteed a seat in the Top 64.

10-2

Top 64: Bryan A. with Nekroz
Game 1 I built a large field with a set Mistake. My opponent didn't have an out, and the game was over shortly after.

Game 2 my opponent went straight into a Djinn lock with a set Forbidden Lance. After a long drawn out game, I put him into a position where I was able to loop Barbar and he couldn't search for spells. After he fell below 900 Life Points into Barbar's range, he realized the game was over and scooped.

11-2

Top 32: Jack G. with Nekroz
Game 1 we grinded away at each other until we both had three or fewer cards left. I drew Mistake for turn, and set it alongside Fire Lake of the Burning Abyss. He misplayed and blind Mystical Space Typhoon'd my two backrows trying to get rid of any potential threats like Solemn Warning or Breakthrough Skill. He missed the Mistake and hit my bluffed Fire Lake instead. He Normal Summoned Manju and I chained Mistake. It lasted me until I secured the win.

Game 2 I went first and opened extremely well. I made a Dante with two Effect Veilers and a Mind Crush set. I controlled the game and didn't let him resolve any of his power plays. After slowly chunking him down, I won when he ran out of cards.

12-2

Top 16: Andrew A. with Nekroz
Game 1 I opened with multiple copies of Mind Crush as well as a Dante. After interrupting several of his plays with Mind Crush, I took control of the game and won in a few turns.

Game 2 I used Foolish Burial to send Graff to the graveyard, which I used to Summon Scarm. I Tributed the Scarm for Spell Canceller and set Raigeki Break. During the End Phase I searched for Tour Guide and passed turn. I later learned that he opened with five spells and a Flying C. Needless to say, I won the game with little resistance.

13-2

Top 8: Jake Phinney with Nekroz
This was probably the most intense match of the tournament for me. In Game 1 I opened double Dante with Karma Cut set and Effect Veiler in hand. Game 1 took about fifteen minutes, until I put myself in a position to win with Barbar.

Game 2 I opened Dante and Vanity's Emptiness, plus an Effect Veiler in hand. On my opponent's turn he activated Shaddoll Fusion, catching me extremely off-guard. I chained Vanity's Emptiness, to which he chained Mystical Space Typhoon. The advantage he gained off of the Shaddoll Fusion was more than enough to put him in the lead and he won next turn.

 Fiend Griefing
$0.99
$0.21
$0.05
Fiend Griefing98474
Set Crossed Souls
Number CROS-EN076
Type Trap Card
Attribute TRAP 
Rarity Common
Card Text

Target 1 monster in your opponent's Graveyard; shuffle it into the Deck, then you can send 1 Fiend-Type monster from your Deck to the Graveyard.


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Game 3 I opened with Friend Griefing; Skill Drain; two Karma Cuts; and a Scarm. I set of all my traps except for one of the Fiend Griefings. He Summoned Manju, to which I chained Skill Drain. It sat on the field keeping me alive with my Graffs and Cirs in rotation, which I searched off of Scarm. Eventually he outed my Skill Drain and I was left in a horrible position.

All I had was a Farfa and a Dante on the field with a Mind Crush set, to my opponent's Armageddon Knight and six cards in hand. I topdecked a Spell Canceller and Tributed the Farfa to Summon it, opting not to use Farfa's effect. I attacked over the Armageddon Knight and Summoned Downerd Magician in Main Phase 2.

He simply set a monster and passed turn. I drew Dark Hole and set it face down. I entered my Battle Phase and attacked with the Downerd over his set Djinn, and then attacked directly with Spell Canceller. I got back Cir with the Dante I detached from Downerd Magician and passed. He Normal Summoned Manju on his next turn to get Nekroz of Unicore, which grabbed Nekroz of Valkyrus from his graveyard. He then passed.

I draw Foolish Burial for turn and set it face-down. I tried to attack his Manju, but he dropped Valkyrus to negate the attack. I set the Foolish Burial face-down and passed. On his turn my opponent Normal Summoned another Manju, getting Nekroz of Gungnir to his hand at this point he was out of Unicores and Valkyrus. He overlaid into Diamond Dire Wolf. In response to the Summon, I activated my set Mind Crush calling Toon World, knowing that I had only the Cir in my hand. That let me see his hand: I learned he had several powerful plays, most notably a live Nekroz of Trishula. He passed turn and Diamond Dire Wolf returned during the End Phase with no Materials.

I drew Breakthrough Skill, set it face-down and passed. He attacked over my Spell Canceller with his Diamond Dire Wolf, and in Main Phase 2 opted to pass without going for another play. I drew Cir and proceeded to activate the Dark Hole I'd set previously. I then activated my set Foolish Burial and sent Graff to the graveyard to summon Barbar from the deck. I Normal Summoned Cir and attacked with that and Barbar to leave my opponent at 800 Life Points. After seeing life, he knew the inevitable Barbar effect was coming and extended his hand. At this point I was guaranteed a spot in the 2015 World Championship.

14-2

Top 4: Maxwell S. with Nekroz
During this match, both Maxwell and I played with smiles on our faces just knowing that we'd already qualified for Worlds. I opened rather poorly in Game 1 and made double Downerd Magician. He Summoned Abyss Dweller, and had the Book of Moon to force it through my Effect Veiler. He then proceeded to Summon Nekroz of Trishula, and with that Game 1 was over.

Game 2 I opened very grindy, with a Graff and multiple trap cards. I held out until I drew Spell Canceller. I Summoned it, then flipped my set Raigeki Break on his face-up Valkyrus. After clearing the Valkyrus, he couldn't draw an out to the Canceller and I took Game 2.

Maxwell opted to go second in Game 3. My opening hand was Phoenix Wing Wind Blast; Karma Cut; Scarm; Graff; and Raigeki. I set my two backrows and passed.

He Normal Summoned Ice Hand and attacked for 1400. During the End Phase, after seeing he'd set nothing to his backrow, I activated Wind Blast on the Ice Hand discarding Scarm and searched for Tour Guide. On the next turn I made a Dante with Cir and attacked for 4100. I opted not to overlay Dante with Downerd Magician. He set a monster presumably the Ice Hand and passed. I Normal Summoned Graff and overlaid with Cir for Number 20: Giga-Brilliant. I detached Graff, used its effect to summon Farfa, and used Farfa's ability to banish my opponent's set monster, clearing his field so I could attack for game.

15-2

Top 2: Chase Cunningham with Burning Abyss
I don't really have much to say about this match. You can watch it on any of the live coverage. I played this match as well as I possibly could, and I don't think it could have possibly gone any better.

After winning the final round in a flawless 2-0 sweep, I was crowned the North American Champion. I'd like to say thank you to everyone that has shown me support, and also to all of the people that have congratulated me. It was a surreal experience, and I'm glad to be able to share it with all of you.

-Noah Greene


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