Alright, here goes my first post! This past weekend (February 27-28, 2016) was the first Bushiroad Spring Fest of the season. I scrubbed out of Vanguard with a 2-2 record on Saturday, so I won’t say too much on that. Instead, I’ll describe my experience on Sunday in the Weiss Schwarz Neo-Showdown.
To get things started, I played a Yellow/Green Kantai Collection deck. My goal in making the deck was for it to be as simple as possible, since fewer moving parts should mean that the deck isn’t as likely to fall apart on me, right? Right. I only actually owned 2 of the 50 cards in the deck, since I mainly play the Japanese format of the game, so I had to borrow the other 48 (I was still missing 28 when I got to Atlanta that weekend!). Because of that, I don’t actually have a picture of the finished deck, but here’s the list:
Yeah, pretty straightforward. Anyhow, on to the tournament itself!
ROUND 1 – vs GRB Nisekoi
This was not how I wanted to start the tournament, to say the least. In his initial mulligan, I saw that he was playing the green 2/1 Kosaki backup, along with the typical red and blue stuff. What had me a bit more scared, however, was the fact that I was playing against Atlanta’s BWC 2014 Champion and BWC 2015 Runner-up. Great guy to get paired up against round 1, eh? Needless to say, he played great. Level 0 was slow, mainly just killing off each other’s level 0 plays while looking for our level 1, but he made sure he never had a field for me to reverse with Shimakaze. I eventually got one search off, but that was the only one I would get. He played his 1/0 Marika combo twice, making sure to attack with it last to avoid -3 soul from Hatsukaze. The only other notable play was siding for 1 soul over his level 1 bombs using Goya to keep damage and field, but other than that, it was a pretty standard game. Zuihou got sent to clock, so I couldn’t anti-change his green 3/2 Kosaki once it hit the field. I bought some time for myself when he forgot that Hatsukaze was on the field and salvaged off of a Door trigger on his first attack, leaving his whole field with -2 soul. I eventually pushed him to level 3 while being at 2-4 myself, but unfortunately, my field was empty and I had no climaxes left in deck. He didn’t realize how many had gotten put into my stock, but he went ahead and played his level 3’s and a climax anyhow and hit me straight to level 4. Great game, I just couldn’t get those climaxes back into my deck.
I knew right here that I had to start playing hard, because X-2 most likely wouldn’t be good enough to make top cut.
ROUND 2 – vs RB Nisekoi
Great, another Nisekoi matchup. Thankfully for me, this one was against a relatively new player. I don’t remember a whole lot about this game, but she played the blue 3/2 Kosaki at level 2, then freefreshed. Her mistake, though, was attacking with the freefresh first, because I was able to anti-change her 3/2, and she ended up not getting much out of it. After that, I proceeded to play some Musashi and Akagi Kai, and that was the end of it.
ROUND 3 – vs YRB Haruhi
Normally, Haruhi wouldn’t worry me. That is, until I realized I was sitting across from my friend Michael, who I was sure knew what he was doing (and had a Top 8 at BWC 2015 Atlanta). He had to pass on his first turn, so I was able to push for damage early, not allowing him to build stock for his level 1 game. Or so I thought. He ended up canceling my first 4 or so attacks, and checked 2 of his +2 soul climaxes into stock. Thankfully, I canceled a few as well and was able to push him with a 1k1 Goldbar, with all 10 damage going through. The game never really got any better for him, though he did use his Kyon’s Sister brainstorm to get all of his climaxes back into his deck. He just kept checking climaxes into stock, though, and I finally finished him off.
ROUND 4 – vs GR Attack on Titan
As much as I hate to say it, I love Attack on Titan as a set. However, that being the case, I also know what the set can do pretty well. I lost one Inazuma to a Petra clock bomb, but I managed to avoid losing any Hibiki to them. At level 1, he continued to play a lot of level 0’s and the 1/0 trap Mikasa that can bring out a 2/2 when the opponent frontal attacks it. I had just the solution for that, though. Goya’s ability to get +1 soul during side attacks and change into a 2-soul 2/1 allowed me to push damage for a few turns while leaving my opponent with a field of mere 4k Mikasa that couldn’t get over me. This opened the damage gap up, and when his level 3 turn failed to put me past 2-6, I clocked into level 3 and finished him with Musashi.
ROUND 5 – vs GB Sword Art Online
This was an interesting matchup. Sitting in front of me was the man who knocked me out of the Vanguard tournament in Round 5 by hitting two critical triggers to put me from 3 damage to 6 while I had 15+ cards in hand. Yeah, that was cool. He played the 1/0 Kirito that can Accelerate to add a 1/0 2k event counter from waiting room back to hand, so I never actually managed to get a Shimakaze search off past killing one of his level 0 that was left around. As soon as he hit level 2, he played his Pure Wish Leafa and a global +1000 Sinon, leaving his characters with wayyyy more power than mine. I sat for a turn or two just hitting for 2 soul with Goya Kai and character encoring her. Finally, when he got to level 3, I just played a field of Musashi and took him to level 4 through two cancels.
This was where things got hard for me. I’ll keep this short, but between Round 5 and Round 6, I got the news that my AP Chemistry teacher, a man whom I loved dearly, had passed away that morning. I sat down, got some water, and cried for a while until the next pairings went up. I told my friends at that point that I was playing to win, and that I wouldn’t drop another game. The next rounds were something to keep me calm and take my mind off of everything.
ROUND 6 – vs YG Love Live
Round 6 was against a Nico waifu deck. I don’t know a whole lot about what the Nico deck can do, since I mainly play Eli and Rin, but it looked pretty at max rarity. I lost a large number of climaxes early, which scared me, because I knew that he played the 1/0 +2 soul search combo. Thankfully, the first time around, I managed to cancel with 2 of the 3 climaxes remaining in my deck, and I milled through the rest of my deck with Winter Akatsuki. His characters were typically 5500 power or so during level 1, so I was able to set up with Shimakaze and get my Goya Kai onto the field safely. However, I chose a Shimakaze over Zuihou in one of my Akatsuki choices, not realizing that Nico had a 2/1 to 3/2 change in Vol.2. He was able to get the 3/2 out and prevent some damage through its ability to mill the top card of the deck when frontal attacked. Character encore kept my Goya Kai around for a while to hit for 2 soul, though, and I finally managed to finish him with Musashi, since there was no way Akagi Kai was going to manage to get over his 14.5k Nico.
ROUND 7 – vs YR Fate
I hadn’t actually played against Fate very much before this, other than my friend’s Japanese Rin deck. Fortunately enough, my opponent was playing a pretty large amount of the same stuff, just with the addition of the 1/0 Shirou combo and 3/2 Saber with Musashi’s shot ability, both from Unlimited Blade Works. He had a number of 1/0 with 5500-6000 power early, due to not having any form of assist in the back row, so Shimakaze got to have fun with a few of them, and they were just shy of getting over my Verniy. I didn’t manage to get a Hatsukaze onto the board, though, so he was able to salvage with a Door trigger once. At level 2, he played two of the 3/2 Victory Rin, and I didn’t have the Zuihou to stop them. I did manage to finally get a Hatsukaze, though. Given, the next turn, he used the Rin level assist’s Resonance ability to send it to my waiting room, then he proceeded to hit two more Door triggers. Things really weren’t looking good for me. I was level 3, 3 cards in clock, and 3 climaxes left in my 6 card deck. He had one 3/2 Victory Rin, one 3/2 Date Rin, and a level 0 Saber on his field. He played his 1k1 Door for the Date Rin’s combo. His first attack for 3 canceled on the first card. He attacked with Date Rin, burning me for 6 damage. It also canceled on the first card. Here I was, 1 climax in 4 cards, 3 damage will put me within range of refresh killing me, and he has a 3-soul attack ready to fire. Someone was looking out for me that day, though, because he triggered a +1 soul trigger, pushing his attack up to 4 soul. I canceled with the last card of my deck, refreshed to 3-4, and canceled his last attack for 2. The next turn, two Musashi and an Akagi Kai came down and cleaned up.
Everyone was really hoping to cut here. We were down to 1 X-0 player, but there were still 8 X-1 players left, so we had to play one last game to get down to a Top 8.
ROUND 8 – vs YGB Kantai Collection
My worst fear came true. I got paired against the last X-1 player from my store, who had played against our store’s other X-1 player the round before. He revealed a climax with an Inazuma on his first time, setting him behind. I got an Inazuma and Hibiki out, and he decided to side attack them for a while so that their abilities couldn’t trigger. This was fine with me, since I got to keep them around to build stock. I managed to take out his Taigei with the help of Shimakaze Kai’s power boost, and put him to high damage quickly. I made sure to clear my field numerous times, but at one point I accidentally changed a Hibiki into Verniy when I rammed it, and allowed him to get a clock kick with his own Akagi Kai. In the end, it didn’t close the gap enough, though, and I was able to play my own field of level 3’s to end him. It was bittersweet, but it secured my spot in the Top 8.
Here it was, the Top 8 cut.
From left to right: Kantai Collection, Attack on Titan, Kantai Collection, Attack on Titan, Nisekoi, Kill la Kill, myself with Kantai Collection, and Project Diva.
TOP 8 – vs RB Nisekoi
Man, I had to play Gerald. I even told him before the tournament that I didn’t want to get paired against him at some point, much less in the Top 8. His deck was even max rarity. This game was just about as scary for me as my first match, with Gerald being Atlanta’s 2014 BWC Runner-up to my Round 1 opponent, and he ended up winning BWC Continentals that year. Alrighty then. I managed to get a Hatsukaze down to stop him from abusing the 1/0 Marika combo while still getting some Shimakaze searches myself. I knew that anti-heal wouldn’t help me, so I mainly kept Hibiki around to swing for damage and give me another character upon being reversed. Both of our decks worked great, and we stayed even in damage most of the game. At one point I had to pass turn while I still had a direct attack with Goya Kai left, knowing that my deck was 2 climaxes in 2 cards. I got away with only taking one damage and one from refresh the next turn, and kept hitting him. In the end, I was low on climaxes and high on damage, and knew I couldn’t let him play his 3/2 Marikas. I dropped 2 Akagi Kai in front of his level 1’s and a Musashi in front of his open slot, and took him straight from 2-5 to 4. Whew. I had made it through the Top 8. Three of the four remaining players would get invited to the Continental Championship.
In the other three games, KC knocked out KC, KLK knocked out PD, and AOT knocked out the other AOT.
TOP 4 – vs YGRB Kantai Collection
Matthew, brother of my Round 3 opponent, who had also made Top 8 at Atlanta’s BWC 2015. I knew this wouldn’t be an easy game, but things ended up not going too well for him. He lost a lot of climaxes to Akatsuki early game, and ended up eating a ton of damage because of it. I had him to 3-0 while I was still at 1-1. However, that gave him the opportunity to play his Haruna Kai Ni and Haguro Kai Ni. Over the next two turns, he had me at 3-0 to his 3-4. I played an Akagi Kai in front of his weakest character and two Musashi in front of his Harunas. The Akagi’s swing for 3 was canceled, and the clock kick put him to 3-5. He played a Compass and brainstormed 2 climaxes out to stop my first Musashi. The second Musashi hit a trigger for 4 damage, and he canceled on the final check. I milled a Shimakaze Kai for her ability, and hit him for 2 damage, exactly enough to finish out the game.
In the other match, Attack on Titan beat the Kill la Kill that had been undefeated up to that point, put him into the finals against me.
FINALS – vs YGR Attack on Titan
It felt good to play someone that I didn’t know again. I’m not going to lie, though, this was probably the most relaxing match of the day for me. We knew that we both had the invite, and my opponent was really friendly and had great manners in playing. We both joked around with each other about stuff, and it almost felt like I was just playing a casual game at locals, really. We stayed almost exactly even in damage all the way to level 3, and we had both canceled quite a number of attacks. He was intrigued by my Goya when I started to side attack into his level 0 characters for 2 soul, and I was equally intrigued by the 1/0 Armin climax combo that he ran. When I put him to level 3, he played two 3/2 Mikasa onto the field, and one smaller character. He managed to put me all the way to 3-5, but I canceled his last attack. I drew another climax for turn, and proceeded to play down an Akagi Kai and two Musashi. I clock kicked one of the Mikasa and hit him for 5 damage in a direct attack with Musashi, closing out the game.
Kill la Kill ended up winning the game for 3rd over Kantai Collection. Congratulations to everyone that made it!
Here is the Top 4, in order:
And I guess I might as well give a shout-out to my local store, Card Addicts, as well!