INOV Subterrors Part 1: What’s New?

Doug Zeeff

10/24/2016 11:00:00 AM
 Comments

I've probably spent more time than anyone else with Subterrors.

From the second all four cards were announced three months ago I fell in love. I wrote two articles already on them: the first part detailed the basic interactions with the theme, and the second one outlined my build. Both of those articles are helpful to read if you've never experienced Subterrors before, but today we're looking forward!

Subterrors - like the other new World Premier theme, SPYRAL - haven't made competitive waves out of the gates like Burning Abyss or Kozmos did. Both themes lacked what previous themes had, and they couldn't keep up with the pace of competition. Regardless, I think it's fairly acknowledged that Subterrors were the better of the two. Subterrors had big monsters, synergized with Prediction Princesses, Speedroid Terrortop, and Brilliant Fusion, and they had some crazy combos.

For a quick recap: the Subterror Behemoths are the heavy hitters of the strategy. They're higher Level monsters with some standard effects. They all can flip themselves face-down once per turn, and they can Special Summon themselves from the hand if you flip a monster face-down while you control no face-up monsters. Then they have Flip Effects as well, but those are unique to each Behemoth. Subterror Behemoth Stalagmo discards a Subterror to draw two cards, while Subterror Behemoth Umastryx banishes a monster.

Then comes the Subterror Nemesis monsters, which follow no strict pattern so far. Subterror Nemesis Warrior is incredible, and arguably the best card in the deck at the moment. You can mill a Subterror to tribute monsters on the field (including itself) that equal or surpass the sent monster's Level, and then Special Summon it. That's awesome for getting bigger Subterrors on the field, and it's also great for dodging effects because you can do it during either player's turn. Additionally, when you flip a Subterror Behemoth you can Special Summon Warrior from the graveyard, throwing damage and fodder on the field.

 The Hidden City
$21.00
$9.01
$6.99
The Hidden City121341
Set The Dark Illusion
Number TDIL-EN085
Type Spell Card
Attribute SPELL 
Rarity Secret Rare
Card Text

When this card is activated: You can add 1 "Subterror" monster from your Deck to your hand. Once per turn: You can change 1 face-down Defense Position "Subterror" monster you control to face-up Attack or Defense Position. Once per turn, when an opponent's monster declares an attack: You can change 1 face-down Defense Position "Subterror" monster you control to face-up Attack or Defense Position, then you can negate the attack. You can only activate 1 "The Hidden City" per turn.


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The Hidden City keeps things going, grabbing any Subterror from your deck when you activate it. It also can flip up or down a Subterror once per turn, an effect that's an important part of most of my Subterror combos. Lastly, you can negate an attack by flipping a face-down Subterror face-up, although that's rarely been used with current Subterrors.

Now that you have a general sense of what Subterrors are trying to accomplish, you'll hopefully better understand how crucial the new support out of Invasion: Vengeance is. When the new cards dropped on the official Konami blog last week I saw a whole lot of “Wait, what do Subterrors even do? Are these cards even good for them?” I'm here today to walk through each of the four new cards and talk about their strengths and weaknesses, as well as the overall direction that Subterrors are going towards. Let's get started with the gigantic new Subterror Behemoth.

Subterror Behemoth Ultramafus

Level 12 EARTH

Pyro-Type Flip Effect Monster

3000 ATK / 1800 DEF

FLIP: You can change all other face-up monsters on the field to face-down Defense Position. You can only use this effect of “Subterror Behemoth Ultramafus” once per turn.

When a face-up monster you control is flipped face-down, if you control no face-up monsters: You can Special Summon this card from your hand in Defense Position. Once per turn: You can change this card to face-down Defense Position.

Previously, the biggest Subterror was Stalagmo, clocking in at Level 10 with 2800 ATK. Ultramafus blows that out of the water, packing 3000 ATK. All of the normal attributes of a Subterror Behemoth are here: you can set it from your hand if a monster is flipped face-down, and you can flip it face-down once per turn.

Ultramafus' Flip Effect changes all other face-up monsters on the field into face-down Defense Position. That's pretty good, and synergizes with the rest of the bunch by resetting their effects. It also combos nicely with The Hidden City because flipping it up essentially stops the whole Battle Phase. Realistically, though, I can't see Ultramafus being a staple three-of. Its effect isn't impactful enough and being Level 12 makes it awkward to summon.

Subterror Behemoth Stygokraken

Level 5 EARTH

Sea Serpent-Type Flip Effect Monster

1600 ATK / 2400 DEF

FLIP: You can target set cards on the field, equal to the number of “Subterror Behemoth” monsters you control; destroy them. You can only use this effect of “Subterror Behemoth Stygokraken” once per turn.

When a face-up monster you control is flipped face-down, if you control no face-up monsters: You can Special Summon this card from your hand in Defense Position. Once per turn: You can change this card to face-down Defense Position.

Stygokraken gets me a lot more excited. It's the smallest Subterror Behemoth to date, both in Level and stats. But that's hardly an issue, and in some ways makes it perfect for Subterrors going forward. At Level 5, it lets you tribute any monster and Subterror Nemesis Warrior to bring it out from the deck. A problem with Subterrors previously was that you had to have Warrior and monster that was at least Level 3 to actually get a Subterror Behemoth on the board, but that's no longer an issue.

Its Flip Effect is interesting, popping set cards equal to the number of Subterror Behemoths you control. It synergizes with Ultramafus' Flip Effect, but I think cards like Swords of Concealing Light and Book of Eclipse are a more viable choice.

Subterror Nemesis Archer

Level 3 EARTH

Fairy-Type Effect Monster

1600 ATK / 1400 DEF

At the start of the Damage Step, if this card attacks an opponent's face-down Defense Position monster and you control another “Subterror” monster: You can shuffle that opponent's monster into the Deck. If this card on the field is destroyed by battle or card effect and sent to the Graveyard: You can Special Summon 1 “Subterror” monster from your Deck in face-up or face-down Defense Position. You can only use each effect of “Subterror Nemesis Archer” once per turn.

While the Subterror Behemoths are your main win condition, the Subterror Nemesis monsters are the glue that keeps the strategy together. Subterror Nemesis Warrior provides effect dodging and speed, while Subterror Nemesis Archer lends spot removal, aggression, and excellent combo potential.

Its first effect lets you shuffle face-down defense position monsters that it battles back into the deck as long as you control another Subterror monster. That combos with Ultramafus in some ways, but I think Prediction Princess Tarotrei is more applicable, flipping your opponent's monster face-down on your turn before the Battle Phase. Shuffling monsters back into the deck is a pretty permanent way to deal with them, so Archer grants some added utility to the theme.

More importantly, if Archer's destroyed you can Special Summon a Subterror from your deck in defense. The monster comes out face-up or face-down, both of which will be useful for combos in the future. This is absolutely the card that Subterrors needed to be successful. By destroying Archer you have access to virtually any monster in your deck for free. You can do stuff like summon a Subterror Behemoth Stalagmo face-down, flip it up with The Hidden City to draw two cards, and then use its effect to flip it back down again for next turn.

I've also drafted a variety of first turn openings that use Subterrors and Metalfoes. Any Metalfoes monster and Archer gets you to whatever you need, and the Metalfoes also add Pendulum Summoning into the mix of your firepower. Using face-up Pendulums for Ritual Summons is a fantastic way to get the most out of the steep cost to summon Prediction Princess Tarotrei, and the Metalfoes high Pendulum Scale of 1 to 8 lets you Pendulum Summon both of your Subterror Nemesis monsters as well as Subterror Behemoth Umastryx and Stygokraken.

 Metalfoes Volflame
$2.39
$1.08
$0.50
Metalfoes Volflame121281
Set The Dark Illusion
Number TDIL-EN024
Level 7
Type Pendulum Monster
Monster Psychic
Attribute FIRE 
A / D 1900 / 500
Rarity Rare
Card Text

Pendulum Effect : Once per turn: You can target 1 other face-up card you control; destroy it, and if you do, Set 1 "Metalfoes" Spell/Trap Card directly from your Deck.
Monster Effect : Roasting red rockets boost its bright-blast burners to liquified lava levels. Vanquisher of the Vanisher!


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Metalfoes Volflame would be the main Metalfoes monster you'd want to use, as a high Level to tribute with Subterror Nemesis Warrior, a solid Level 7 to pair with Umastryx for Xyz Summons, and 2400 ATK to close out games.

As far as consistency goes, a Subterror and Metalfoes hybrid would be off the charts. Between The Hidden City and Terraforming you've got nine copies of Subterror Nemesis Archer, and you'd have plenty of Metalfoes to destroy it with. Power cards like Pre-Preparation of Rites and Metalfoes Fusion would push your fields to the next level, too. Expect to see a build from me in a future article!

Subterror Behemoth Burrowing

Normal Trap Card

You can banish 1 “Subterror” monster from your Graveyard: for the rest of this turn, face-down monsters you control cannot be destroyed by card effects, and your opponent cannot target them with card effects. If this card on the field is destroyed by a card effect: You can add 1 “Subterror” monster from your Deck to your hand. You can banish this card from your Graveyard, then target 1 “Subterror” monster you control; change it to face-down Defense Position.

The fourth and final new card out of Invasion: Vengeance is actually a trap card. Subterror Behemoth Burrowing has three unique effects that attempt to address some of the issues with Subterrors. The first effect lets you banish a Subterror from your graveyard to prevent face-down monsters from being targeted or destroyed by card effects. That might not seem great, but it's actually huge. Board wipes were always your worst nightmare with Subterrors. If you have three set monsters and Prediction Princess Tarotrei and you get Raigeki'd you've now lost everything. Even chaining Tarotrei to flip something face-up won't work because the monster will be destroyed before it has a chance to activate its effect.

The next effect gives you a cushion against Twin Twisters. If Burrowing is destroyed by a card effect you can search your deck for a Subterror. I've always been a fan of backrow that replaces itself on destruction because it intrinsically makes your other backrow safer. Potentially taking a minus in card economy with Twin Twisters discourages your opponent from keeping them in against you, so your Solemn Strike and Solemn Warning end up being protected.

Lastly, you can banish Burrowing from your graveyard to flip a Subterror monster face-down. That's alright. In all honesty, Subterrors needed more help flipping face-up, but this is better than nothing. The main use that I've found with this effect is in the later turns when you have a Subterror Nemesis and a hand full of Subterror Behemoths. You can banish Burrowing to flip the Subterror Nemesis face-down, and then proceed to dump your hand of all the larger Subterror Behemoths.

At the end of the day, I love all the support that Subterrors are about to receive. I still think they're better than SPYRALs because of their consistency and cohesion, and I can't wait to try them out. If you were curious about the new cards but wasn't sure how they fit into the theme, hopefully this article cleared things up!

-Doug Zeeff


Doug Zeeff hails from Michigan and is currently an English major in college. When he's not found emailing Konami about why there's not a single walrus card in all of Yu-Gi-Oh! you can find him regularly posting unorthodox, unfiltered semi-Yu-Gi-Oh! related content on his Youtube channel, Dzeeff. In his spare time he enjoys eating cheese, Overwatch, and, of course, playing Yu-Gi-Oh. Click here to follow him and his adventures on Facebook!


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