Rerouting Deck Fix: Performapal Sky Magician

Loukas Peterson

3/8/2018 11:00:00 AM

If you have some degree of distaste for Performapal decks, I wouldn't blame you.

Some of the cards were so revolutionary when they were first released, that we needed an emergency “Adjusted List” in February of 2016 to keep competitive Yu-Gi-Oh! from spiraling totally out of control. Ironically, some the best Performapal monsters like Performapal Pendulum Sorcerer and Performapal Skullcrobat Magician were never featured in any Yu-Gi-Oh! animated series. But who am I to judge?

Moving on, we have one particular Performapal that's very hard to summon, but this week's contributor is putting it to work anyways. Mikael from Nova Scotia writes…

I've seen several of your Performapal decks before, and it's time to bring one of them back. Other decks are too obsessed with Heavymetalfoes Electrumite, but that's not the focus of my deck! I see the Performapals as tools to help me achieve other goals and get me to better boss monsters. I'm not talking about the Extra Deck, though!

Performapal Sky Magician is my favorite Performapal Magician, so I built a deck around it and loaded it up to make sure you get all of its effects off as soon as possible. Performapal Pendulum Sorcerer can search it, so it makes sense to play the strategy that way.

-Mikael T. ~ Halifax, Nova Scotia
Embarrassingly, I've been spelling “Halifax” as “Hailfax” for years, and in my defense of justification based off the spelling, the football player Brett Favre has a non-phonetic way to spell his name as well.

Sorry, Canada…

Here's what Mikael's deck looks like.

    Performapals Ver 1.0 Mikael T.    
Main Deck
Side Deck
3 Effect Veiler
2 Performapal Dag Daggerman
3 Performapal Guitartle
3 Performapal Lizardraw
3 Performapal Pendulum Sorcerer
3 Performapal Revue Dancer
3 Performapal Sky Magician
3 Performapal Sky Pupil
2 Performapal Springoose
Monsters [25]
3 Duelist Alliance
3 Foolish Burial Goods
3 Magician's Left Hand
3 Magician's Restage
3 Magician's Right Hand
Spells [15]
Deck Total [40]


2 Abyss Dweller
2 Artifact Durendal
1 Curious, the Lightsworn Dominion
1 Diamond Dire Wolf
1 Firewall Dragon
1 Ignister Prominence, the Blasting Dracoslayer
3 Number 41: Bagooska the Terribly Tired Tapir
1 Saryuja Skull Dread
1 Tornado Dragon
1 Tri-Gate Wizard
1 Zefra Metaltron
Extra Deck [15]

Anyone that puts Performapal Springoose in a deck is near and dear to my heart already. It may seem like an extraordinary silly card, but there are some pretty awesome applications in niche situations where very specific play sequences help you complete pendulum scales or reuse effects.

The Oscar For Hardest Monster To Summon Goes To…
Before I took on this project, I remember my friend Chris and I talked about Magician's Restage and by extension Performapal Sky Magician. Shortly into that discussion, it dawned on me that Performapal Skullcrobat Joker is currently Forbidden, throwing a huge wrench into my grand plans. It's extremely hard to Summon Sky Magician early on in a duel. Sure, once you search the card you can Pendulum Summon it, but think of all the ways to actually search the card when you don't have Joker.

The only way to actually fetch Performapal Sky Magician from your deck with a Normal Summon is Performapal Secondonkey, and while it has value, it isn't exactly what you want to pin your hopes and dreams on. Unless you already have full Pendulum Scales, Secondonkey isn't going to net you much.

I initially ventured down the road of using Spellbooks - Spellbook of Life specifically – but that was a lot less consistent than I thought. Spellbook of Knowledge wasn't the amazing card I wanted because while it helped thin the deck, Spellbook of Life needs a second Spellbook in hand to actually go off, and wowee did I have a lot of useless cards in my hand.

When I say “hard to summon,” keep in mind I've already thought about leveraging Performapal Longphone Bull and other even more obscure options. But in the end, I think it's best to focus on the most consistent card in the deck: Performapal Pendulum Sorcerer.

 Performapal Pendulum Sorcerer
Performapal Pendulum Sorcerer122291
Set 2016 Mega-Tins
Number CT13-EN007
Level 4
Type Pendulum/Effect Monster
Monster Spellcaster
Attribute EARTH 
A / D 1500 / 800
Rarity Super Rare
Card Text

Pendulum Effect : If a "Performapal" monster(s) is Pendulum Summoned to your side of the field: All "Performapal" monsters you currently control gain 1000 ATK until the end of this turn (even if this card leaves the field).
Monster Effect : If this card is Special Summoned: You can target up to 2 cards you control; destroy them, and if you do, add "Performapal" monsters with different names from your Deck to your hand, except "Performapal Pendulum Sorcerer", equal to the number of cards destroyed. You can only use this effect of "Performapal Pendulum Sorcerer" once per turn.

Store Condition Qty Avail Price  
KCs Card Corner Limited - Moderately Played 2 $0.40
Prodigy Games Limited - Near Mint 2 $0.49
Element Gaming Limited - Near Mint 1 $0.49
CoreTCG Limited - Near Mint 24 $0.49
A Binder Full Limited - Near Mint 1 $0.50
Dragon Star Hobbies Limited - Moderately Played 1 $0.50
KCs Card Corner Limited - Lightly Played 2 $0.50
Gamescape North Limited - Near Mint 1 $0.50
Cardmonstergamez Limited - Lightly Played 6 $0.52
Jumpman Limited - Near Mint 2 $0.53

Ok, so I'm not desperate enough to bank the entire strategy on Sorcerer and play Performapal Friendonkey, but I will cap that thought saying both Friendonkey and Performapal Lizardraw are both Level 3 Earth monsters. Let me get back to the usable cards, because while Mikael's strategy focuses around Performapal Pendulum Sorcerer and Performapal Sky Magician, it's not built to consistently field both.

Summoner Monk came off the Forbidden and Limited List a while ago, but sometimes I have to remind myself that cards once considered too broken to use eventually turn into a shell of what they once were, Summoner Monk included. It's really simple to use in this context because it has a singular goal - field Performapal Pendulum Sorcerer. As much as I'll praise Pendulum Sorcerer, it wasn't the exigency of the deck; rather just a tool to get to Performapal Sky Magician.

So… Why Sky Magician?
Two of the three Magician cards Performapal Sky Magician can leverage stop your opponent's spells and traps: Magician's Left Hand stops their first trap each turn, while Magician's Right Hand stops their spells. Magician's Restage revives monsters from your graveyard, but it doesn't have the surprise factor that the other two can present.

Between Fire Formation - Tenki, Brilliant Fusion, and other Continuous Spells, nothing really stood out as an amazing card to reuse turn after turn. In an ideal setting, you'd like to use something like Tenki on your turn, swap it out for Magician's Restage immediately, then have the Magician Hands to use when your opponent's turn comes around. With all that in mind, Brilliant Fusion seems like a no brainer Turn 1 play to me.

In terms of other cards that shut down your opponent, you can use Deck Lockdown and Secret Sanctuary of the Spellcasters. They can both have negative side effects for the turn player by shutting down your strategy or blowing up prematurely, but they're valid targets for Sky Magician when you need to swap them out. Worst case scenario, a single Deck Lockdown can buy you a turn or two or at least serve as fodder for Summoner Monk. Also, we seriously need to cut down on the number of Magician's cards here.

Like… by a lot.

Back to Magician's Restage, which is still the biggest reason I wanted to play this deck. Knowing me, if you thought I initially tried some stupid Chaos hybrid involving Gravekeeper's Recruiter and Constellar Rasalhague, you're 200% right, but there's a much better alternative.

First, in terms of Pendulum Monsters, Performapal Extra Slinger is actually astonishingly useful. It saw very limited success in a few Regional Top Cut lists in 2016 at the height of Performapal's power, but it fills a notable niche in today's deck. It's a Performapal, so it works with Performapal Secondonkey and Performapal Pendulum Sorcerer, and in a pinch you can do some damage when it's in a Pendulum Scale. Then again, that's just a niche play because the better Spellcaster was so obvious, I don't know why I didn't think of it sooner.

That's Windwitch - Ice Bell. I'm all about having cards that can stand out on their own, and a single Ice Bell can deal damage along the way to a Crystal Wing Synchro Dragon. Sure, it eats your Extra Deck space a bit, but that's a small price to pay for one of the easiest and strongest one-card combos you can make.

 Crystal Wing Synchro Dragon
Crystal Wing Synchro Dragon136851
Set Battles of Legend: Light's Revenge
Number BLLR-EN062
Level 8
Type Synchro/Effect Monster
Monster Dragon
Attribute WIND 
A / D 3000 / 2500
Rarity Secret Rare
Card Text

1 Tuner + 1+ non-Tuner Synchro Monsters
Once per turn, when another monster's effect is activated (Quick Effect): You can negate the activation, and if you do, destroy that monster, and if you do that, this card gains ATK equal to the destroyed monster's original ATK until the end of this turn. If this card battles a Level 5 or higher monster your opponent controls, during damage calculation: This card gains ATK equal to the current ATK of the opponent's monster it is battling during that damage calculation only.

Store Condition Qty Avail Price  
TeamScrubLife Gaming 1st Edition - Near Mint 1 $3.26
MiscellaneousTCG 1st Edition - Near Mint 3 $3.75
Wandering Star 1st Edition - Near Mint 1 $4.35
The Sage's Shoppe 1st Edition - Near Mint 1 $4.47
Frontline Games 1st Edition - Lightly Played 1 $4.50
SCS CardShop 1st Edition - Near Mint 2 $4.57
Frontline Games 1st Edition - Near Mint 3 $5.00
LaughlinCCG 1st Edition - Near Mint 1 $5.00
OverpoweredCardGames 1st Edition - Near Mint 1 $5.05
Neverland Games 1st Edition - Near Mint 1 $5.43

Check out the changes below… even if it's mostly removing superfluous copies of cards.

-1 Performapal Lizardraw
-1 Performapal Guitartle
-1 Performapal Dag Daggerman
-1 Performapal Springoose
-1 Performapal Sky Magician
-3 Performapal Sky Pupil
-3 Performapal Revue Dancer
-2 Magician's Right Hand
-2 Magician's Left Hand
-3 Foolish Burial Goods

-2 Artifact Durendal
-2 Number 41: Bagooska the Terribly Tired Tapir
-1 Tornado Dragon
-1 Curious, the Lightsworn Dominion
-1 Firewall Dragon
-2 Abyss Dweller

+2 Performapal Secondonkey
+3 Windwitch - Ice Bell
+2 Windwitch - Glass Bell
+1 Windwitch - Snow Bell
+1 Gem-Knight Garnet
+3 Summoner Monk
+1 Performapal Extra Slinger
+1 Timegazer Magician
+3 Chronograph Sorcerer
+3 Brilliant Fusion
+1 Deck Lockdown
+1 Secret Sanctuary of the Spellcasters

+1 Gem-Knight Seraphinite
+1 Crystal Wing Synchro Dragon
+1 Windwitch - Winter Bell
+1 Heavymetalfoes Electrumite
+1 Leviair the Sea Dragon
+1 Borreload Dragon
+1 Underclock Taker
+1 Akashic Magician
+1 Ib the World Chalice Priestess

At the intersection of inexpensive and effective you have Effect Veiler, a card that's only recently begun to emerge from the shadow of Ash Blossom & Joyous Spring in tournament play. It's especially good here, because it's a Light Spellcaster that isn't bad when you draw it.

Here's the final build of Mikael's deck!

    Performapals Ver 2.0 Loukas Peterson    
Main Deck
Side Deck
3 Chronograph Sorcerer
3 Effect Veiler
1 Gem-Knight Garnet
1 Performapal Dag Daggerman
1 Performapal Extra Slinger
2 Performapal Guitartle
2 Performapal Lizardraw
3 Performapal Pendulum Sorcerer
2 Performapal Secondonkey
2 Performapal Sky Magician
1 Performapal Springoose
3 Summoner Monk
1 Timegazer Magician
2 Windwitch - Glass Bell
3 Windwitch - Ice Bell
1 Windwitch - Snow Bell
Monsters [31]
3 Brilliant Fusion
1 Deck Lockdown
3 Duelist Alliance
1 Magician's Left Hand
3 Magician's Restage
1 Magician's Right Hand
1 Secret Sanctuary of the Spellcasters
Spells [13]
Deck Total [44]


1 Akashic Magician
1 Borreload Dragon
1 Crystal Wing Synchro Dragon
1 Diamond Dire Wolf
1 Gem-Knight Seraphinite
1 Heavymetalfoes Electrumite
1 Ib the World Chalice Priestess
1 Ignister Prominence, the Blasting Dracoslayer
1 Leviair the Sea Dragon
1 Number 41: Bagooska the Terribly Tired Tapir
1 Saryuja Skull Dread
1 Tri-Gate Wizard
1 Underclock Taker
1 Windwitch - Winter Bell
1 Zefra Metaltron
Extra Deck [15]

For the sake of space, I opted not to include any hardcore Magician cards like Pendulum Call. Yeah, that probably sounds really oxymoronic since the theme of the deck shares a similar name, but if you want to talk about a deck that's tight on space, then look no further than a hybrid that's already stretched this far.

With Timegazer Magician also being a Level 3 Spellcaster, I couldn't afford to not include it. Combined with Chronograph Sorcerer, you could easily have a Heavymetalfoes Electrumite at your fingertips, and like most strategies, that's really worthwhile here.

Just remember: beat your opponents before they beat you.

-Loukas Peterson

Loukas Peterson lives in Nashville, Tennessee where it's warmer than warm, whatever that means. When he's not submitting ideas for Fabled support and a Fabled Link monster, you can find making “attempts” at “art” and playing his ukulele terribly, or on Wednesday nights, hanging out with the local mice. Hailed as the only person capable of cooking Minute Rice in 56 seconds, Loukas is always looking at expanding his apartment to house every dog in the world.

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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