Rerouting: Ancient Gears

Loukas Peterson

6/1/2017 11:00:00 AM
 Comments

Iíve never talked about Ancient Gears before because historically speaking, the deckís awful.

I was one of those nerds that loved Yugioh: GX, and from the first episode, I was hooked on Ancient Gears at least in theory. You know what two themes were highlighted in the first episode? Fusion Heroes and Ancient Gears, both strategies that never really came into their own in real life tournaments but that remain near and dear to my heart. I swear, one day Iíll beat everyone with Shining Flare Wingman...

Fun fact: Ancient Gears already got a Structure deck back in 2007Ö which makes me feel really old. The cards in it were ďokayĒ at best, but it did pave the way for Geartown to become an annoying anti-meta threat in Malefic strategies thanks to Ancient Gear Gadjiltron Dragon. With the 2017 Ancient Gear Structure deck, Machine Reactor, Ancient Gears suddenly have legitimately good cards! I may sound bitter, but yeah, Iím calling all the other Ancient Gear stuff mediocre.

Donít worry though, todayís contributor didnít play Ancient Gear Castle in his submissionÖ

I never experimented with Ancient Gears because they just couldnít keep up with all the Zoodiacs and the Dracoslayer cards. Then, I was proven wrong - we got a new Structure Deck and I was hooked! Finally we have a reasonable way to summon Chaos Ancient Gear Giant, something I thought Iíd never say. Between Ancient Gear Catapult and Ancient Gear Box, the four Ancient Gear Fusion Materials arenít so hard to assemble.

Combined with Ultimate Ancient Gear Golem, you got options, man! Ancient Gears used to be so slow, but thanks to some of my new favorite cards like Ancient Gear Wyvern, the Fusions arenít completely and totally impossible to summon. A lot of stuff ďties the deck together,Ē but nothing can tie it together like Ancient Gear Wyvern, a card that can search for anything in your deck.

See ya,

-Chris P. ~ Sante Fe, New Mexico

As I said earlier, the powerhouses were few and far between in Ancient Gear decks of old. Ancient Gear Golem was the deckís original threat, but our new toys are a bit better; and by a bit, I mean ďextremely-million-times-more-usefulĒ.

I do have to admit that Ultimate Ancient Gear Golem is pretty cool, even if itís objectively a bit worse than Chaos Ancient Gear Giant. Check out Chrisí Rank 8 approach to the strategy.

    Ancient Gears Ver 1.0 Chris P.    
 
Main Deck
Side Deck
1 Ancient Gear Box
2 Ancient Gear Gadget
3 Ancient Gear Golem
1 Ancient Gear Hunting Hound
3 Ancient Gear Wyvern
3 Gold Gadget
2 Malefic Stardust Dragon
Monsters [15]
1 Advance Draw
3 Ancient Gear Catapult
3 Ancient Gear Fortress
2 Dark Hole
1 Fusion Substitute
3 Geartown
1 Polymerization
1 Power Bond
1 Raigeki
3 Terraforming
3 Trade-In
3 Twin Twisters
Spells [25]
Deck Total [40]

EXTRA DECK

1 Abyss Dweller
1 Ancient Gear Howitzer
1 Castel, the Skyblaster Musketeer
1 Chaos Ancient Gear Giant
1 Daigusto Emeral
1 Divine Dragon Knight Felgrand
2 Gear Gigant X
1 Heavy Armored Train Ironwolf
1 Number 38: Hope Harbinger Dragon Titanic Galaxy
1 Number 39: Utopia
1 Number S39: Utopia the Lightning
3 Ultimate Ancient Gear Golem
Extra Deck [15]
Notes:


Iím not sure if Iím annoyed by it or not, but the original design intent for Ancient Gears was to circumvent Special Summoning with cheaper tributes and perhaps additional Normal Summons as a core component of the theme.

Flash forward to today: Ancient Gear Catapult throws all that out the window, and surprise!, Special Summoning is really easy in 2017.

Fusions? Burn? Why Not?
Ancient Gears never dabbled in Fusion Summons until the most recent release. Previously their claim to fame was a built-in Armades, Keeper of Boundaries effect for just spells and traps, and writing that sentence made me realize even more deeply why Ancient Gears never took off. Monster effects are free to activate without anything to stop them, while spells and traps played in the Battle Phase are almost a thing of the past.

Thatís where Ancient Gear Fortress comes into play. The turn your Ancient Gears hit the field, your opponent canít target them with card effects or destroy them. Very few monsters have non-targeting effects that remove monsters on your opponentís turn without destroying them, making an Ancient Gear Fusion monster with a face-up Ancient Gear Fortress quite the deadly combo when youíre flying in for an OTK. Thatís what Iíd like to focus on in todayís Deck Fix.

With that in mind, the Rank 8 suite needs to hit the road. Sure, Number 38: Hope Harbinger Dragon Titanic Galaxy can be a great opener, but it doesnít complement the strengths of the deck, nor does it contribute to the Fusion-centric elements of your game plan. Itís a 2-card investment when youíre already throwing the kitchen sink in with your Fusions. Iím actually surprised there werenít any Ancient Gear Gadjiltron Dragons in Chrisí original submission, since you can actually summon them with Geartown, unlike Ancient Gear Golem.

 Number 38: Hope Harbinger Dragon Titanic Galaxy
$17.79
$11.56
$9.00
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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The second element here that seemed off was the decision to play only one copy of Ancient Gear Hunting Hound. Youíll need five cards to hit the ground running with the big bad Chaos Ancient Gear Giant Ė four monsters and a way to fuse them. Hunting Hound acts as a Fusion Material and your Fusion Spell, so three copies is definitely a must.

In addition to that, Polymerization and Fusion Substitute are a lame way to Fusion Summon. I know they offer versatility without the drawback of Power Bondís painful cost, but you should really just go big or go home and play another Power Bond. I know it doesnít boost Chaos Ancient Gear Giantís attack, but Ancient Gear Howitzer and Ultimate Ancient Gear Golem get boosted and could be the difference between ending the game that turn and not.

I promise you wonít feel bad about using so many cards for one Fusion Monster when you deal 20,000 points of damage to your opponent. Win now, die later, ya know?

No Grind Game? No Problem
I advocate for Power Bond because you arenít exactly going to be sticking around for the grind game. Even just adding Overload Fusion, a one card trade for one Fusion monster, card economy isnít your friend in Ancient Gears. Yes, cards like Geartown produce monsters and Ancient Gear Wyvern searches the deck for a free card, but all the big plays are flashy for giant Fusions. When youíre down on your luck, there arenít many cards you can topdeck with a blank field to bail you out of a bad position.

Donít despair - the lack of a late game is made up for with ridiculously powerful early game cards that can easily end the turn. Say you start with a Gold Gadget, Ancient Gear Wyvern, and a Geartown. Normal Summon Gold Gadget to Special Summon Ancient Gear Wyvern and search an Ancient Gear Fortress. Overlay both for Number 59: Crooked Cook, activate both your spells, and then blow everything up with Crooked Cook to pump it up to 2900 ATK. Both your Gear spells kick in for two copies of something like Ancient Gear Reactor Dragon, and oh look, thatís 8900 damage.

Sure, itís a three card combo with no recovery, but my point is Ancient Gears are quite efficient at putting massive damage on the board; your late game card economy situation doesnít matter. Heck, the new Ancient Gears even have random burn built in Ė Ancient Gear Hunting Hound, for whatever reason, burns your opponent for 600 points and then you could easily Ancient Gear Howitzer for another 1000 damage. I still donít know why Ancient Gears, a theme that never dealt with triggered burn damage before, now have these effects. But weíll take it without asking too many questions.

After removing the Rank 8ís I added the aforementioned Ancient Gear Reactor Dragon. Itís justÖ a better version of Ancient Gear Gadjiltron Dragon except that itís Level 9, which is even more of a reason to remove the Rank 8 stuff. Maxing out on spell and trap removal isnít all that important since most Ancient Gears have built-in protection effects, but yarding a dead Ancient Gear Gadget via Twin Twisters wonít hurt and doing it with an Ancient Gear Catapult can be even better.

If you canít OTK your opponent immediately, there are some things you can do to set up in the meantime. Iím adding some traps just to keep you alive, and hey, Gear Gigant X searching Ancient Gear Box and by proxy Ancient Gear Gadget is good for your card economy. Just when your next turn rolls around, hopefully youíll have what it takes to blaze through your opponentís cards.

 Chaos Ancient Gear Giant
$2.41
$0.91
$0.66
Chaos Ancient Gear Giant127296
Set Raging Tempest
Number RATE-EN041
Level 10
Type Fusion/Effect Monster
Monster Machine
Attribute DARK 
A / D 4500 / 3000
Rarity Super Rare
Card Text

4 "Ancient Gear" monsters
Must be Fusion Summoned and cannot be Special Summoned by other ways. Unaffected by Spell/Trap effects. Your opponent's monsters cannot activate their effects during the Battle Phase. This card can attack all monsters your opponent controls, once each. If this card attacks a Defense Position monster, inflict piercing battle damage to your opponent.


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Towards that end I kept Dark Hole. For one, it clears your field for Ancient Gear Catapult to get things going, but it also blows away Zoodiac Drident and Master Peace, the True Dracoslaying King. Dealing with one is fine, but more and more weíre seeing fields with multiple strong monsters that can take down your Ancient Gears. And sadly, Ancient Gear Fortress wonít always be enough to help you in the long runÖ If you even have it in the first place.

Itís kind of ironic: Ancient Gears, especially Chaos Ancient Gear Giant, were made to punish your opponent and their monsters, whose ATK pale in comparison to your GiantÖ But monster effects are exactly their downfall. I toyed around with Breakthrough Skill, Forbidden Chalice, and similar options, but you might as well play Dark Hole or perhaps Ghost Ogre & Snow Rabbit in their place.

Below are the changes. I cut it down to just one Ancient Gear Gadget; even if you can search multiple since Gigant X can bring back your Ancient Gear Box from the graveyard, Iíd really, really, rather never draw Ancient Gear Gadget. Its effect just isnít very useful.

-2 Ancient Gear Golem
-2 Malefic Stardust Dragon
-1 Gold Gadget
-1 Ancient Gear Gadget
-1 Raigeki
-1 Twin Twisters
-1 Polymerization
-1 Fusion Substitute
-1 Advance Draw
-3 Trade-In

-1 Gear Gigant X
-1 Number 38: Hope Harbinger Dragon Titanic Galaxy
-2 Ultimate Ancient Gear Golem
-1 Divine Dragon Knight Felgrand
-1 Abyss Dweller

+2 Ancient Gear Reactor Dragon
+2 Ancient Gear Hunting Hound
+2 Silver Gadget
+1 Limiter Removal
+1 Overload Fusion
+1 Power Bond
+1 Galaxy Cyclone
+3 Solemn Strike
+1 Ancient Gear Reborn

+1 Chaos Ancient Gear Giant
+1 Ancient Gear Howitzer
+1 Phantom Fortress Enterblathnir
+1 Gagaga Samurai
+1 Number 59: Crooked Cook
+1 Tornado Dragon

And hereís the final list. Donít worry, I like Ultimate Ancient Gear Golem enough to keep a lone copy of it plus Ancient Gear Golem. Sure, itís not as impressive in as many ways as Chaos Ancient Gear Giant but it does require fewer materials.

Actually, my biggest grievance with it is its Attribute. If it was a Dark monster, then Overload Fusion would benefit you a lot more. Sadly itís an Earth and will have to work as a middle ground between Chaos Ancient Gear Giant and Ancient Gear Howitzer.

    Ancient Gears Ver 2.0 Loukas Peterson    
 
Main Deck
Side Deck
1 Ancient Gear Box
1 Ancient Gear Gadget
1 Ancient Gear Golem
3 Ancient Gear Hunting Hound
2 Ancient Gear Reactor Dragon
3 Ancient Gear Wyvern
2 Gold Gadget
2 Silver Gadget
Monsters [15]
3 Ancient Gear Catapult
3 Ancient Gear Fortress
2 Dark Hole
1 Galaxy Cyclone
3 Geartown
1 Limiter Removal
1 Overload Fusion
2 Power Bond
3 Terraforming
2 Twin Twisters
Spells [21]
1 Ancient Gear Reborn
3 Solemn Strike
Traps [4]
Deck Total [40]

EXTRA DECK

2 Ancient Gear Howitzer
1 Castel, the Skyblaster Musketeer
2 Chaos Ancient Gear Giant
1 Daigusto Emeral
1 Gagaga Samurai
1 Gear Gigant X
1 Heavy Armored Train Ironwolf
1 Number 39: Utopia
1 Number 59: Crooked Cook
1 Number S39: Utopia the Lightning
1 Phantom Fortress Enterblathnir
1 Tornado Dragon
1 Ultimate Ancient Gear Golem
Extra Deck [15]
Notes:


If I had to single any card out as a random sleeper pick, it would probably be Heavy Armored Train Ironwolf. Its second effect will rarely help you out, but having one of your Machines bypass your opponentís monsters is a pretty good gig.

Ancient Gears arenít your typical glass cannon, but sometimes they sure feel like it. Try not to die on your first turn so you can OTK with a huge Chaos Ancient Gear Giant that attacks all your opponentís monsters and inflicts piercing damage.

Just remember, beat your opponents before they beat you!

-Loukas Peterson


Loukas Peterson lives in Madison, Wisconsin where every day he cries for warm weather, mollified by his job as software engineer and living in the basement. When he's not playing cards or crying about the lack of Fabled support, you can find him on his kayak reading a book and playing the ukulele or at his painting desk, probably on his 30th cup of coffee for the day. Hailed on the only one capable of cooking Minute Rice is 57 seconds, Loukas is always looking for another creative outlet and a dog to pet.


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 rerouting.tcgplayer@gmail.com to have your deck featured in the ďRe-RoutingĒ 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 accordinglyÖ 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. ďWinningĒ is not a strategy per se, and neither is ďbeating your opponents before they beat you.Ē

-Your favorite card from the build and why Ė 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! ĖLJP


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