Hi and welcome to the Day One Deck series, where we dabble around with the newest Rulers that come out in each new set and hopefully gain more deckbuilding insights and ideas along the way.
The first one on our list is none other than the titular Moonlit Savior herself, Kaguya!
The third iteration of Kaguya turns her back into a Little Girl. However, this version of hers is arguably the most powerful given her set of abilities, particularly on her J-Ruler side. Her ruler side is special in a way that it makes deckbuilding a lot easier (and more straightforward) if we’re taking advantage of the newest cards in the set. There’s an abundance of Light and Wind cards which uses the Moon Will, and being able convert Moon Will into Wind goes a long way in helping out the deck’s consistency. Her other Ruler ability of drawing a card whenever a Moon enters our field is a nice bonus to have as well.
So what goes into a Kaguya deck? Since we want to explore the cards from the new set, let’s dive into Light and Wind – Kaguya’s natural Attributes, and see what they offer:
These two are some of the best Resonators in TMS Sealed, and they carry their worth through the Constructed format as well. Cherudim is a good 2-of or more, especially with Fire decks still running rampant, and Crescent Moon Magician will always find viable targets at any stage of the game *coughLancelotcough*.
Tsukuyomi Noble provides a one-sided advantage (she’s counted as a Moon) to our field. Resonators that have game-changing activated abilities are few and far in between, but it’s still good to have protection against them. Her Awakening ability can be very useful because it gives our main deck access to Addition removal without dedicating space for it in the sideboard. That means decks that pack stuff like Barrier of Shadows, or Ame-no-Habakiri in their main decks will soon find themselves at the mercy of a 700/900 beatstick. At her worst, Tsukuyomi Noble still has great stats for her cost and will draw us a card when we play her.
Who knew bamboo could be so deadly? What the Bamboo Bullet lacks in speed (it’s not Instant), it more than makes up with punishing power. Lots of effects in FoW require Resonators to Rest – attacking, blocking, using abilities, etc. so we’ll find no shortage of targets. Or we can always use Shining Strike to draw them out. Either way, blowing out two opposing Resonators for only one card is good value.
White gets a moon! This card makes most of our Resonators larger, and as an added bonus, we get a nifty tool that can lock down their J-Ruler! Good luck to Valentina 2.0 in getting past this one. We also get a card when we play it since it’s a well… Moon.
Moonbreeze Elf is love, Moonbreeze Elf is life! If you’ve played during the prerelease, she’s one of the most important Resonators one can ever get because of her ability to generate Moon Will and ramp into a 3-cost play next turn. In our Kaguya deck, her role is just as important, because most of the cards we’ll play costs 3 Will total and one of those will be the Moon attribute. Note that she cannot be attacked, which is always good. However, just like Elvish Priest, she’s susceptible to cheap removal like Thunder and Demonflame.
This card is sick in Sealed if we can play it early with Awakening. An 800/800 with Target Attack on turn 2 is usually more than enough to throw a wrench at the opponent’s initial plays, and they must find a way to remove this while they develop their board. The same also holds true in Constructed. We can always play the Wolf with Awakening given all the Moon Will available, and it’s a huge bonus if we can do it by the second turn. Its huge body will discourage smaller Resonators from attacking, and its Target Attack will force the opponent into making potentially unfair trades when we’re on the offense.
With all the aggression going on around in the current metagame, life gain is few and far in between. For the longest time, control decks have stemmed the aggressive tide of attackers only to find themselves at the mercy of direct-damage spells. Foment not only provides a significant amount of life gain that can put us out of harm’s way, but also helps improve the quality of our hand by allowing us to send back the less useful cards at that moment and potentially drawing more useful ones.
This card is a hot topic for being the only card in existence (so far) that can cancel Flame of Outerworld. It is important to remember that this card also cancels abilities from opposing cards (e.g.Lancelot’s 700 damage, Susanowo’s Enter ability, Izanagi’s Enter effect, Blazer Gill Rabus’ Destroy J-Ruler ability) and we can choose when to banish it. Think of it as a form of insurance – we can cast it when there’s nothing to do with our spare resources and our opponent will always have to play around it as long as it’s in the field. We also draw a card off of it when played, which is always good.
I imagined Control players wept with joy and Aggro players cringed when this card was spoiled. Finally, they have a tool to fight back against the early, relentless onslaught of Swift Resonators. For the longest time, one of the best strategies in FoW is to play the best Spell that we can (e.g. Lancelot on turn 2), thus maximizing the resources that we have, and this single card stands to contest that time-tested method. Just the mere existence of it puts a conundrum on every aggro player’s mind if they see an unused Wind-producing stone across the field. Do they gamble and go for it, play their best Spell for the turn, and possibly get blown out (and set back a turn) if the opponent has Wall of Wind? Or do they use their spells in a sub-optimal manner in order to play around it, keeping one Magic Stone open to pay for it just in case, but at the cost of slowing down their strategy? The same also applies against mid-range and control decks, where Cancel wars could boil down up to the last Magic Stone.
Or maybe not because we have…
Best common card in FoW? Or best card ever in FoW? It bears repeating – this card cancels ANYTHING for the mere cost of two Will, and for an additional Moon Will, we can have the final say on whatever our opponent is casting (that isn’t Flame of Outerworld – but hey, we have another card for that). Simply put, this card is RAW POWER and our opponent will always live in fear of making a big, crucial play only to be foiled by this card whenever we have the resources to spare.
The Earth may have gotten most of the hype because of its interaction with Ryoma, but we know deep inside that it’s Apollo that we want to open in our packs during the prerelease. Having an early Apollo in play allows us to accelerate our plays in the same manner that Moonbreeze Elf does – by being able to generate an additional Moon Will which we can use to pay for Awakening effects of cards like Cherudin and Wolf in the Moonlight as early as Turn 2. It also helps in reducing Kaguya’s Judgement, and God’s Art costs, and has a last bit of utility by being able to save a friendly Resonator by bouncing it back into our hand.
Cards from Previous Sets
We round off our list with some cards from previous sets to help overcome matchups from existing decks which we may encounter.
Along with Moonbreeze’s Memoria, these are our primary sources of Moon Will from our Magic Stone deck. Moon Shade hurts a lot less because we can always convert the Moon Will it produces into Wind, thus allowing us to avoid the loss of life that happens when we use it to produce any other kind of Will. Moon Light, in combination with Moon Shade, allows us to produce Will of any Attribute, which expands our options when choosing sideboard cards such as:
These cards are outside our main Attributes, but we can use them thanks to the Moon Stones.They’re useful for countering some of the prevalent strategies in the game today:
- Barrier of Shadows is great against Regalia-heavy decks.
- Robe of Fire Rat helps slow down aggressive Fire Resonators.
- Sign to the Future blows out decks that rely of a large number of Resonators in the field.
Ruler: Kaguya, the Moonlit Savior
4 Interdimensional Vessel, Apollo
4 Wall of Wind
4 Seal of Wind and Light
3 Luminescent Bamboo Bullet
2 Sign to the Future
3 Wind-Secluded Refuge
2 Holy Moon of Pure Nights
4 Moonbreeze Elf
4 Wolf in the Moonlight
4 Crescent Moon Magician
4 Tsukuyomi Noble
2 Angel of Wisdom, Cherudin
4 Moonbreeze’s Memoria
3 Magic Stone of Moon Shade
3 Magic Stone of Moon Light
2 Angel of Wisdom, Cherudin
1 Luminiscent Bamboo Bullet
1 Wind-Secluded Refuge
3 Robe of Fire Rat
3 Barrier of Shadows
2 Sign to the Future
3 Foment of the World Tree
The deck plays reactively and keeps a low-cost curve in order to easily use Judgement and take advantage of Kaguya’s J-Ruler side. We win through small, incremental advantages throughout the game brought about by either Cancelling the opponent’s crucial spells, or killing off their Resonators by using our own. Ultimately, Kaguya herself is our big win condition, as her God’s Art enables us to get past the opposing field and go in for the kill if our field is developed enough (or you know, she can just ride Apollo to evade them).
The Moonlit Savior permanently gets bigger as we play more cards with Awakening, which is easy given our access to Moonbreeze Elf and Apollo. She can also protect herself from damage if necessary and provides an additional utility of being able to Cancel automatic abilities. Given enough time and protection, she will eventually grow into a large, unstoppable threat that can end the game in a couple of turns.
So that’s it for the first of our Day One Decks! I hope you’ve gained some insight into Kaguya and the new cards that work well with her. This is just the start, and I’m sure there are a lot of cooler, more powerful lists yet to be explored as the set is explored.