Regional Material: Brilliant Performapals

Doug Zeeff

4/11/2017 11:00:00 AM

Loukas “Math Major” Peterson visited me this past weekend, and as Yu-Gi-Oh! friends tend to do when they hang out, we played a bunch of duels. I was intrigued by his deck, which was a slightly updated version of a Performapal strategy that he wrote about last month.

At the time, Loukas' driving reason for creating that deck was how cheap it was to build: almost all of the Performapals have been reprinted at one time or another, and a vast majority of the cards in the Main Deck were just a few cents each.

But as you might know, I have a hard time sticking to a budget when it comes to Yu-Gi-Oh. One of the reasons that I believe sticking to a budget to be so difficult for articles is that I, like many other players, accumulate cards month after month that can be used in a variety of strategies. For example, I made an initial investment into three Pot of Desires and two PSY-Framelord Omega, and I've since played them in about thirty unique strategies. By limiting yourself to a budget in each column, you're assuming the readers don't have any cards to start with.

 PSY-Framelord Omega
PSY-Framelord Omega106032
Set High-Speed Riders
Number HSRD-EN035
Level 8
Type Synchro/Effect Monster
Monster Psychic
Attribute LIGHT 
A / D 2800 / 2200
Rarity Secret Rare
Card Text

1 Tuner + 1 or more non-Tuner monsters
Once per Turn , During Either player's Main Phase : You can Banish both this face-up card on the field and 1 random card in your opponent's hand until your next Standby Phase . During your opponent's Standby phase: You can target 1 Banished card; Return it to the Graveyard . If this card is in your Graveyard: You can target 1 Other card in any Graveyard; shuffle both that card and this card into the Deck .

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I mention this because Loukas restricted himself on a few choices in that article that he actually used himself in real life. For example, he opted out of Toadally Awesome and Trishula, Dragon of the Ice Barrier, two cards that he summoned on me pretty much every other game. It's nice to show readers how good of a deck you can build without spending a lot of money, but today I wanted to make a few edits to Loukas' deck, this time without considering budget.

Why? Because after playing a bunch of games against Performapals I'm convinced that it could be a real Regional Qualifier sleeper hit if the right person spent the time on it.

A New Twist On An Old Favorite
I'm just going to assume that many of the Performapal cards are still fresh in your memory. It's only been a year since Performapal Pendulum Sorcerer, Performapal Skullcrobat Joker, and Performapal Monkeyboard were terrorizing tournaments. Monkeyboard's currently Forbidden and Skullcrobat Joker's Limited; those are the only true Performapals that find themselves on the Forbidden & Limited List. Performapal Pendulum Sorcerer is still allowed at three copies, and even without Monkeyboard there's a bunch of awesome combos you can do with some lesser known cards.

For example, you might have seen Performapal Secondonkey at a couple YCS tournaments, used as a searcher for Sorcerer before a big Pendulum Summon. What you might not know is that you can also send a Performapal from your deck to your graveyard instead of searching it, which sets up a sweet combo with Performapal Springoose. I know it might seem like a brick, but Springoose is insane, and it adds a layer of repeatability that's difficult for some decks to deal with.

While Springoose is in the graveyard you can banish it to target two Pendulum Monsters you control, or Performapals in your Pendulum Scales. Both the targets are then returned to your hand. Why's that so good? Well, for starters, it lets you reuse cards like Performapal Skullcrobat Joker, and it also clears your Pendulum Scales so you can get bonus draws with Performapal Guitartle in case you couldn't use it for your initial Pendulum Summon.

The best combo with Springoose is another lesser known card: Performapal Dag Daggerman. That name might seem stupid (and it is), but the effect is no joke. If you activated Dag Daggerman in the Pendulum Scale that turn, you can use its effect in the Main Phase to get back a Performapal from your graveyard. It's a Pendulum Scale 2, which fits perfectly with a variety of high scales like Performapal Guitartle, Performapal Lizardraw, and Luster Pendulum, the Dracoslayer.

That effect is crucial because it solves one of the biggest problems of Xyz Summoning with Pendulum Monsters: they don't go back to the Extra Deck when you detach them. Getting one recover with Dag Daggerman is pretty good, but bouncing it back to your hand with Springoose is even better.

It's this recycling power coupled with a ton of ways to play through backrow that got me so attached to Performapals this past weekend. Here's my version of Loukas' deck.

    Regional Material Brilliant Performapals Doug Zeeff    
Main Deck
Side Deck
2 Armageddon Knight
1 Blackwing - Zephyros the Elite
1 Farfa, Malebranche of the Burning Abyss
1 Gem-Knight Lazuli
3 Jigabyte
1 Luster Pendulum, the Dracoslayer
2 Master Pendulum, the Dracoslayer
1 Performage Trick Clown
1 Performapal Dag Daggerman
2 Performapal Guitartle
3 Performapal Lizardraw
1 Performapal Partnaga
3 Performapal Pendulum Sorcerer
1 Performapal Radish Horse
3 Performapal Secondonkey
1 Performapal Skullcrobat Joker
1 Performapal Springoose
2 Summoner Monk
Monsters [30]
3 Brilliant Fusion
3 Instant Fusion
1 Soul Charge
2 Twin Twisters
Spells [9]
3 Dimensional Barrier
1 Floodgate Trap Hole
Traps [4]
Deck Total [43]


1 Bahamut Shark
1 Cairngorgon, Antiluminescent Knight
1 Castel, the Skyblaster Musketeer
1 Daigusto Emeral
1 Diamond Dire Wolf
1 Dinoster Power, the Mighty Dracoslayer
1 Elder Entity Norden
1 Gagaga Cowboy
1 Gem-Knight Seraphinite
1 Ignister Prominence, the Blasting Dracoslayer
2 King of the Feral Imps
1 Majester Paladin, the Ascending Dracoslayer
1 Toadally Awesome
1 Traptrix Rafflesia
Extra Deck [15]

Loukas didn't play Summoner Monk in the article version of the deck, but he played it in our duels. The Monk has a lot of synergy with this deck because you pitch any spell to bring out a Performapal Pendulum Sorcerer. You can then use Sorcerer's effect to destroy itself and Summoner Monk, grabbing whatever Performapals you need.

I wanted to expand on that even further, so I'm taking a book from the many Dark Pendulum decks we saw topping Regionals last year. Two Armageddon Knights, one Farfa, Malebranche of the Burning Abyss, and one Blackwing - Zephyros the Elite give you four more cards to play with if your Pendulum Summon gets stopped. Most importantly, a single Armageddon Knight and any Pendulum Scale can search a high or low Pendulum Scale by fielding King of the Feral Imps.

Speaking of, King of the Feral Imps is a huge asset to this strategy. Sure, you can obviously search Pendulum Scales with it, but you can get Jigabyte too. You can throw Jigabyte onto the field as long as you control any Spellcaster, and there are plenty here to consistently do that. It's a Level 4 Water as well; you can bring it back with Elder Entity Norden to make Bahamut Shark and Toadally Awesome.

Another important change I made was adding Dinoster Power, the Mighty Dracoslayer to the Extra Deck. Most of the time when you can get to Dinoster or Majester you can bring out whichever one you don't have, so I found it strange that Loukas didn't play it in his version. Even better, pretty much any time you see a Luster Pendulum, the Dracoslayer you can cycle through all three Extra Deck Dracoslayers, nabbing you a search in the End Phase off of Majester and also protecting your Pendulums with Dinoster's effect.

I swapped out the outdated Bottomless Trap Hole for Floodgate Trap Hole, a card that's quickly becoming one of my favorite traps. I also added three Dimensional Barriers to stall out games where you get hit by an opposing Barrier. Two Twin Twisters help with that as well, taking out multiple backrow in the End Phase by discarding cards that you can simply add back with Dag Daggerman.

This deck still isn't that expensive overall, especially if you already have Dimensional Barriers. Even if you don't, you could swap them out for cards like Solemn Strike or Quaking Mirror Force if you're on a tighter budget. All three of those traps are fantastic options right now, so don't be afraid to experiment!

Performapals are a strong underdog deck that could definitely earn you an invite at a Regional, so if you want to turn some heads and score some wins it's definitely the deck for you.

-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 Yu-Gi-Oh! 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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