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Staples and Staplers - Kenneth Wright (1/25/2007)

It does not matter if you play Traditional or Advanced. It does not matter if you play stall or aggro. It does not even matter if you play to win or just for fun. No matter what, you will see and use deck staples.

Now, I hear the question asked, ´´What do you mean, 'deck staples'?´´ To clarify, a deck staple is a card that has evolved from useful to necessary. Most deck staples are common cards that can be found in preconstructed decks and/or the Dark Beginnings/Revelations packs. Other, more devastating staples are rare.

Yes, there is a difference between useful cards and staples. The main difference between them is that staples are usually straight-forward. A useful card, like Decoyroid, can be used over and over to obtain similar results, but without precision. A staple, like Heavy Storm, can be used over and over with the same results every time.

How does a card go from being useful to becoming a staple? A staple is context sensitive. In other words, a staple can differ in meaning from deck type to deck type. For example, A Legendary Ocean is a staple in a Water deck, but not a staple in a Spellcaster deck. In order for the card to be considered a staple, you must ask yourself 2 important questions:

1. Is the card useful in my deck?
A staple cannot be identified if it is not first useful in the deck. First check to see if the card can be used to its full power before adding it. Then ask yourself the second question.

2. Can the card be considered a staple?
Once a card has proven useful, you can then identify its status as a staple. Remember, a staple has evolved from useful to necessary. So, if your deck cannot function, or functions worse, without the card in question, congratulations. You have discovered a staple.

There are a few types of staples to consider in deck building. The first type is the Common Staple. This type of staple is used in most decks, including pro-level decks. You have probably seen these cards in both your's and your opponent's decks. Common Staples include Royal Decree, Mystical Space Typhoon, Call of the Haunted, Snatch Steal, and Negate Attack, just to name a few.

The second type of staple is the Uncommon Staple. This type of staple can be used in most decks, but is usually overlooked in favor of other cards. These cards are a little harder to use, but can have great power, sometimes even greater than some of the Common Staples. Uncommon Staples include Emergency Provisions, Bait Doll, Royal Surrender, Judgement of Anubis, and Mirror Force.

The third, and last, type of staple is the Context Staple. This type of staple is used only in specialized decks focused on one type or attribute. These cards normally cannot be used in other decks, but they can be more powerful than the Common and Uncommon Staples. Context Staples can include A Legendary Ocean, Elemental Art Traps, Magical Dimension, Beast Soul Swap, and Ultra Evolution Pill.

Now that we have discussed staples, let us look at how to use staples in deck building.

When you build a deck, you normally follow a predetermined strategy, adding cards that would support the strategy and looking for possible combinations. When choosing cards you have determined to be staples, first check your strategy. If your strategy involves continuous traps and spells, then the Heavy Storm staple would not be a good choice. However, Royal Decree would be a good staple to use.

After checking your strategy, choose staples that accent or improve your deck. If you are building, for example, a Water deck focused on Field Clearance, you would probably want to add the Common Staples Heavy Storm, Mystical Space Typhoon, and Sakuretsu Armor, the Uncommon Staples Bait Doll, Emergency Provisions, Judgement of Anubis, and Mirror Force, and the Context Staples Penguin Soldier, Torrential Tribute, A Legendary Ocean/Umi, and Levia Dragon.

Once you have chosen the staples to put in you deck, check for comparable replacements. Although staples are essential to deck building, most of them are restricted or banned. By finding cards with similar effects, you are basically making new staples.

After all the steps are complete, you should have a good understanding about staples and their uses. Knowing what staples are, as well as how to identify them, will allow you to increase your deck's power while breaking your opponent's deck apart. After all, what will hold a deck together if the staples are taken out?

I hope I have helped you. Peace out for now.

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