Rerouting: Rock Fun

Loukas Peterson

12/2/2016 11:00:00 AM

Don't get me wrong - I really like Koa'ki Meiru, but I've historically shied away from writing on them for one simple reason: I can never remember how to spell any of the cards. It's the same reason I rarely write about Karakuris, having to always blindly search on the Yu-Gi-Oh! Card Database to find card names because “Big Karakuri Burrito” isn't the official name of Karakuri Steel Shogun mdl 00X “Bureido.”

Koa'ki Meiru decks come in all shapes and sizes, but two strategies have risen to the top over the years. Rock Stun, having four monsters that effectively nerf every type of effect you could want with 1900 ATK each, is backed by the lovely Block Golem in a somewhat rogue, stalwart strategy. The other revolves around Koa'ki Meiru Urnight as a on-theme Summoner Monk that mandates Iron Core of Koa'ki Meiru's inclusion in the deck. I don't think today's strategy really adheres to any specific deck…

Buddy! Dude! Help me out - I tried to play a Rock Stun deck, but I never won a game. I don't own Card of Demise, and this is probably my third attempt at a Rock deck, but as you can see, it's not really a Rock Stun deck anymore. At least, that's what I a was told. I did keep Pot of Duality, but feel free to take it out.

I was inspired by Doug's YouTube channel a few years back after Primal Origins came out, but since we only have one Tour Guide these days, I didn't put any of that in. Can you help me out here? I'd be eternally grateful if you showed me the way of a Rock deck. I just want it to be enjoyable, but people say I'm boring because my favorite card is Fairy King Albverdich.

-Johnny F. ~ Detroit, Michigan

Yeah, I would say that's not a card many people would call their favorite.

You're in luck, since I've always been partial to our good friends of the Koa'ki Meiru. Koa'ki Meiru do have quite the expansive arsenal, but the theme doesn't beg for every Koa'ki Meiru in the Main Deck. Maybe I'm missing something, so please tell me in the comment section if I was way off.

    Rock Fun Ver 1.0 Johnny F.    
Main Deck
Side Deck
2 Beta The Electromagnet Warrior
3 Block Golem
2 Gamma The Electromagnet Warrior
3 Gorgonic Gargoyle
2 Koa'ki Meiru Crusader
2 Koa'ki Meiru Drago
3 Koa'ki Meiru Guardian
1 Koa'ki Meiru Hydro Barrier
2 Koa'ki Meiru Overload
2 Koa'ki Meiru Sandman
2 Koa'ki Meiru Urnight
2 Koa'ki Meiru Wall
Monsters [26]
2 Dark Hole
3 Diamond Core of Koa'ki Meiru
2 Iron Core of Koa'ki Meiru
1 Magnetic Field
3 Pot of Duality
1 Raigeki
Spells [12]
1 Solemn Warning
1 Vanity's Emptiness
Traps [2]
Deck Total [40]


3 Diamond Dire Wolf
2 Fairy King Albverdich
2 Gagaga Cowboy
2 Gem-Knight Pearl
3 Number 106: Giant Hand
1 Number 52: Diamond Crab King
1 Number 55: Gogogo Goliath
1 Number 82: Heartlandraco
Extra Deck [15]

For the life of me, I can't find a reason to keep some of the Koa'ki Meiru monsters in the deck. I fear we'll be doing a lot of cutting today, mostly to find a strategy that works.

But as always, you're sure to see something unexpected in the final build.

Rock Stun's A Bit Brittle
One reason we've seen the Rock Stun Koa'ki Meiru decks fail is simply the nature of the game. If we reverted to Yu-Gi-Oh! in the days of old where Smashing Ground and Red Gadget were a lethal pair, Rock Stun decks would be much better. Now, the trade-off's just paltry at best - when your opponent can squeeze out multiple uses from one card, sacrificing your Rock-type Koa'ki Meirus would put you on the losing end of most trades.

As my extremely clever header to this segment indicates, I'm gravitating away from the rocky version Johnny submitted and adding an aggressive punch that's not as conventional as other Koa'ki Meiru builds. Not only do we have a weird mix of… ok, I have to be honest. I'm not sure what the overall theme is in this deck. It's hardly a trap-heavy stun build, and the Koa'ki Meiru Urnight lacks support without Tour Guide From the Underworld or Fire Formation - Tenki.

The first build for this fix did just that. Koa'ki Meiru Urnight makes explosive plays possible, grabbing most Koa'ki Meiru monsters from your deck. You can shut down whole strategies by grabbing a Koa'ki Meiru Drago or net additional hand advantage via Koa'ki Meiru Crusader. It opens up the Rank 4 suite from your Extra Deck, and you can go further by using Kuribandit as your Tour Guide From the Underworld target. Kuribandit fills your graveyard for Block Golem and Gaia Plate the Earth Giant and open the door Evil Hero Dark Gaia with Dark Calling.

But that's a lot to coordinate and leaves Block Golem useless as often as you'll get its effect off. Not only that, you'll eat your Normal Summon and be forced to make a ton of tough edits when making your original deck. To make matters more complicated, we're going that route because why be simple when you could be interesting?

That Means We're Cutting… What?
It means we're gutting the deck and flipping it on its head. To make the most of Kuribandit, we'll need three copies of the card and a Tour Guide From the Underworld for a cheap Rank 3. Plus it's a Fiend, meaning Dark Calling is live even faster.

Allure of Darkness is an obvious add, and thus the aforementioned Dark Calling gets to see some action. If we're going to be sending lots of cards to the graveyard via Kuribandit, it only makes sense to add more cards that can leverage your bulky graveyard.

Magnetic Field and Sentry Soldier of Stone will be replacing Block Golem. Instead of Summoning two Koa'ki Meirus to the field, we'll dig into the Extra Deck and make monsters that can use their effects the turn you summon them. Both Sentry Soldier and Magnetic Field can generate many monsters of the course of a few turns without restricting your graveyard to Earth monsters only.

A lot of the Koa'ki Meiru support will have to be gutted too, in favor of more threatening monsters. Gaia Plate the Earth Giant and Block Dragon are both somewhat expensive monsters that require a full graveyard, and Kuribandit won't be enough to stock the yard. Adding in Empowerment, the niche Field Spell, provides another outlet for loading your graveyard and plopping a monster on the field. When you throw Trade-In into the mix, you have an actual excuse to load the deck with more Level 8 monsters.

 Number 38: Hope Harbinger Dragon Titanic Galaxy
Number 38: Hope Harbinger Dragon Titanic Galaxy115792
Set Premium Gold: Infinite Gold
Number PGL3-EN008
Level 8
Type Xyz/Effect Monster
Monster Dragon
Attribute LIGHT 
A / D 3000 / 2500
Rarity Gold Secret Rare
Card Text

2 Level 8 monsters
Once per turn, during either player's turn, when a Spell Card or effect is activated on the field: You can negate that effect, and if you do, attach that card to this card as Xyz Material. When an opponent's monster declares an attack: You can detach 1 Xyz Material from this card; change the attack target to this card and perform damage calculation. If a face-up Xyz Monster(s) you control is destroyed by battle or card effect: You can target 1 face-up Xyz Monster you control; it gains ATK equal to 1 of those destroyed monster's original ATK.

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If it seems like I'm shooting from the hip here, you're not wrong. I'm trying to Salvage the deck and make an aggressive Rock strategy that packs more of a punch. The added Level 8 monsters fuel Trade in, search monsters from your deck, thin your deck faster, attack over big threats, and make Rank 8 monsters all the while! The Electromagnet Warriors largely facilitated Rank 3 plays, but with a few additions you can search the deck in a whole new way.

Making the deck into an aggressive front, I had to scale back on Koa'ki Meirus even further for space issues - well, that and you don't have time to sit around and Normal summon Koa'ki Meiru monsters one at a time. Koa'ki Meiru Overload, Koa'ki Meiru Sandman, and Koa'ki Meiru Guardian are the three best candidates - not only do they fuel your graveyard for Block Dragon and Gaia Plate, but they're your best options for offensive fronts, stopping monsters and traps from getting in your way. Koa'ki Meiru Wall's better used in a reactive deck, backed by a plethora of traps.

Having a paltry mish-maps of traps wasn't working out in testing either, so I abandoned the defensive elements almost completely. It's nice to have some form of protection in Rise to Full Height or effect negation with Breakthrough Skill, but due to our fast-paced deck, it's good to have cards that serve a purpose even when yarded. I added a lone Magnet Conversion for another form of defense, and I've still yet to use its first effect.

Be Free, My Extra Deck!
Rock decks are largely divided by Block Golem and its not-so-fun restriction of Earth monsters. Ditching the Level 3 Rock Golem ushers in a vast array of Rank 8's and clutch cards that have never seen the light of day, like Gorgonic Guardian and Giant Soldier of Steel. Maybe I'm paranoid, but I always seem to run into burn decks when I'm piloting fun strategies at smaller tournaments.

Your Rank 4 options are also less restrictive, going beyond Diamond Dire Wolf and Number 106: Giant Hand as Extra Deck saviors. I hope the changes aren't too overwhelming, but the more I tested different variants of Johnny's submission, the more I realized I had to settle on some sort of theme without trying to please every niche strategy. Instead of reverting to an Urnight build or a Rock Stun deck, it became a Rock strategy that was just fun to play, A.K.A. Rock Fun!

Cover your eyes for the somewhat horrifying list of edits, folks.

-2 Koa'ki Meiru Crusader
-2 Koa'ki Meiru Drago
-1 Koa'ki Meiru Guardian
-1 Koa'ki Meiru Hydro Barrier
-1 Koa'ki Meiru Overload
-2 Koa'ki Meiru Urnight
-2 Koa'ki Meiru Wall
-3 Block Golem
-1 Gamma The Electromagnet Warrior
-3 Gorgonic Gargoyle
-3 Pot of Duality
-2 Dark Hole
-1 Raigeki
-2 Iron Core of Koa'ki Meiru
-1 Solemn Warning
-1 Vanity's Emptiness

-2 Diamond Dire Wolf
-2 Gagaga Cowboy
-2 Number 106: Giant Hand
-2 Fairy King Albverdich
-2 Gem-Knight Pearl
-1 Number 52: Diamond Crab King
-1 Number 55: Gogogo Goliath
-1 Number 82: Heartlandraco

+3 Kuribandit
+1 Tour Guide From the Underworld
+1 Sentry Soldier of Stone
+2 Block Dragon
+1 Gaia Plate the Earth Giant
+2 Berserkion the Electromagnet Warrior
+1 Alpha The Electromagnet Warrior
+2 Empowered Warrior Terratiger
+1 Magnetic Field
+2 Empowerment
+2 Allure of Darkness
+2 Dark Calling
+3 Trade-In
+1 Magnet Reverse
+1 Rise to Full Height
+1 Magnet Conversion
+2 Breakthrough Skill

+2 Evil Hero Dark Gaia
+2 Gorgonic Guardian
+1 Alsei, the Sylvan High Protector
+1 Divine Dragon Knight Felgrand
+1 Number 38: Hope Harbinger Dragon Titanic Galaxy
+1 Super Quantal Mech Beast Grampulse
+1 Soul of Silvermountain
+1 Castel, the Skyblaster Musketeer
+1 Abyss Dweller
+1 Dante, Traveler of the Burning Abyss
+1 Leviair the Sea Dragon

This isn't a More Bang for Your Buck article, but the deck's hardly expensive. Most cards have been reprinted multiple times, come from Structure Decks, or are commons from their original set.

The drastic overhaul was just one of the many directions I could have taken the deck. Johnny's submission was lacking direction, but this is the kind of thing you get out of me when you give me free rein! Here's the final list.

    Rock Fun Ver 2.0 Loukas Peterson    
Main Deck
Side Deck
1 Alpha The Electromagnet Warrior
2 Berserkion the Electromagna Warrior
2 Beta The Electromagnet Warrior
2 Block Dragon
1 Gaia Plate the Earth Giant
1 Gamma The Electromagnet Warrior
2 Koa'ki Meiru Guardian
1 Koa'ki Meiru Overload
2 Koa'ki Meiru Sandman
3 Kuribandit
1 Sentry Soldier of Stone
2 Terratiger, the Empowered Warrior
1 Tour Guide From the Underworld
Monsters [21]
2 Allure of Darkness
2 Dark Calling
3 Diamond Core of Koa'ki Meiru
2 Empowerment
1 Magnet Reverse
2 Magnetic Field
3 Trade-In
Spells [15]
2 Breakthrough Skill
1 Magnet Conversion
1 Rise to Full Height
Traps [4]
Deck Total [40]


1 Abyss Dweller
1 Alsei, the Sylvan High Protector
1 Castel, the Skyblaster Musketeer
1 Dante, Traveler of the Burning Abyss
1 Diamond Dire Wolf
1 Divine Dragon Knight Felgrand
2 Evil HERO Dark Gaia
2 Gorgonic Guardian
1 Leviair the Sea Dragon
1 Number 106: Giant Hand
1 Number 38: Hope Harbinger Dragon Titanic Galaxy
1 Soul of Silvermountain
1 Super Quantal Mech Beast Grampulse
Extra Deck [15]

The most expensive card here is, what, Allure of Darkness? Even so, that's not a vital piece to your strategy - it's just another way to thin your deck that isn't named Into The Void.

Spot checking some prices, I suppose Number 38: Hope Harbinger Dragon Titanic Galaxy could set you back some pocket change as well. I encourage you to play around with the deck and take it in your own direction - remember, the world's your oyster. Er, rock… whatever metaphor makes sense here, picture that.

Just remember, beat your opponents before they beat you!

-Loukas Peterson

Loukas “#spellberks4lyfe” Peterson lives in Madison, Wisconsin where he's earned the honor of Employee of the Century at his basket-weaving job. When he's not getting lost walking to the grocery store, his days are spent shaking his fist in the direction of Konami's North American headquarters demanding Fabled support or an archetype based around rainbow flags. In his spare time, Loukas dresses up as various road signs around his neighborhood, intentionally spelling things wrong to confuse drivers.

Do you love winning with unconventional strategies? Do you love creating mash-ups? Does your deck need an injection of crazy? Send the following to to have your deck featured in the “Re-Routing” deck fix column!

-Your Main and Extra Deck list. (No Side Deck needed, but please send a written deck list, not a screencap; screencapped deck lists will be filed and then burned in the furnace accordingly… and your deck should be TCG legal).

-Your name and city.

-Remember, please use full card names! Abbrevs and mis-sipllngs make Loukas' life sad. Try your darndest to get the TCG name on there.

-A paragraph or two describing your deck: what it does, why you're playing it, and its strengths and weaknesses. “Winning” is not a strategy per se, and neither is “beating your opponents before they beat you.”

-Your favorite card from the build and why – make me fall in love with the deck! The cooler your strategy the more I'll want to fix it, and if you throw in funny jokes, that'll surely get my attention too; be warned, unfunny jokes will push your deck to the back of the stack. Don't be afraid to get creative! New stuff takes priority, because I'm not bored of it yet! –LJP

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