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CardShark Content - Kenneth Wright (7/20/2005)

Yes, unfortunately I miscalculated (stop snickering at me, sharks, haven't you miscalculated before?) and said that deck building is a ten part process. It is actually half that.

So far I have covered the following:

1) Organizing your collection for quick reference
2) Matching your playing style to a deck type
3) Utilizing cards you would actually use in a game
4) Building on the deck with a sideboard for tournaments

In this article, we will discuss the final step to creating a winning deck.

5) Testing your deck against an equally skilled player

If you have tried the steps above, you have a binder (or more) of cards organized to your needs, a playing style to build around, cards to support said playing style, and a sideboard with cards still focused on the style but unable to enter the deck due to size. But how can you tell if the deck is really better than the rest? I have composed three easy steps to determine if the deck is worth a shot.

1. Five-Card Draw

After building and randomizing a deck, draw five cards. Can you see possible first move combos? Is there a power attacker/defender there to daunt your opponent? How many traps do you have? Ask yourself these questions, determine the answers, make a winning first move combo, and repeat. When you repeat, ask a new question: Is this hand better or worse and, if worse, what can I do to make up for it?

I would suggest doing this at least five times to determine first move power. If you cannot make a powerful first move combo, stop here and break down the deck. It needs to be reconstructed.

2. Test of Show

The Yugi, Kaiba, Joey, and Pegasus Starter decks as well as the preconstructed decks of Dragons, Zombies, Water attributes, and Fire attributes are excellent ways to test basic deck strategy. Have a friend, preferably somebody as good as you, to play against you using as many of the basic decks as you have or can replicate.

Play against three Starters and two Preconstructs. Look at basic strategies your playing style has and determine if you can keep your style intact. If you cannot win three out of the five games, at least, you must stop using the deck and break it apart. It needs to be rebuilt.

3. Test of Skill

Once your deck has passed this very difficult test, it is ready for the hardest test of all: the test of skill. Find your rival, assuming you have one good enough in your area to be considered a rival or threat, and challenge him/her to a duel (guys in the back, stop whining, we all have a female version of us that surprised us and whipped us good, right? ...Ok, never mind). This challenge is to test how the deck will respond/create difficult situations.

Take your time, and for your sake, don't sweat! Remember, this is a test and only a test, so no bets either. If you fail to win, or win through luck, you need to change a few cards out. If you win outright, great job, you now have a tourney-level deck that might get you that shiny new card at the next match.

If it takes you a while to build a good deck through this process, you have to slow down a little and think a little bit more. This process is simple and easy to use, and it gave me an excellent deck that was undefeated for three months straight.

It was an Amazon deck that focused on a lot of the older cards most see as obsolete, yet has amazing potential. I unfortunately had to drop out of competition due to adult responsibilities (WAAAAAAAAAHHAAH!!!), but the deck has stayed intact for a while. These cards in this deck are on sale here at Cardshark! So my deck list for this deck is on the Yu-Gi-Oh! selling list under the seller ´´chromegaman´´.

I'll see you on the Flip (summoned) side!

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