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Saikyo Cardfighter R
on Cardfight!! Vanguard
There Is No Best Clan, Stop Asking
Asking what is the best clan is to ask a nonsensically vague question.
One of the go-to questions that a newbie to Vanguard will ask, aside from 'how decklist plz' is 'what is the best clan in your opinion' (it almost always has 'in your opinion' or a variant thereof as newbies are usually not self-aware enough to know personal expereince without science is worth jack, and sadly neither are most of the competitive players). Whenever I get asked this question, and I am thanks to my email being posted at the end of every article, I always answer the same: there isn't one. And no, this is not me subscribing to the 'anything can win' train of thought, come on, sheep-le, you know me better than that.
The reason I say there isn't a best clan is simply because clans themselves are not good. It is decks that are good, and even then, a good idea isn't something that stays good forever. There is only a good idea relative to its time and its place. I would have thought watching your own deck get power-creeped out of obscurity made you aware of this.
Clans are not good because at their most base level, clans are effectively ideas. You utilise or take advantage of one or more game mechanics and then base card designs around that. Whether or not they are executed well depends on the question of what happens next, which is basically why pre-Yasuie Murakumo was so shit: because paying costs for cards you don't even keep is a fucking stupid price to pay when you only have so much resources to spend.
What also makes this question extremely annoying and vague is the fact that the criteria upon which a person would judge the 'best clan' changes depending on whatever you look for in a deck that you intend to run as your main. But whatever. Let's say that a person asks what the best clan is when you put together every possible criteria together and add it all together. Perhaps that may help to solve all the questions...or at the very least it should until the next meta INEVITABLY power-creeps this article into useless-ness and I have to write this bloody article out again to catch up.
Best Deck: This is almost always what newbies and most people being asked this question mean when the subject of what's the best clan is brought up. What they REALLY mean is which clan currently has the best tournament-viable deck, whether it is overall or restricted to only one tier. Even with such a small criteria, thanks to most decks shooting for one of two outcomes except a little differently because there's more clans than actual mechanics and most clans getting staple clone cards that render their builds pretty same-y, it's still a difficult question to answer, but given that these modern decks are bound by almost always the exact same exploitable weakness, I'm going to give this round to Gold Paladin, specifically its Grade 1 rush variant, with Tachikaze's G1-3 rush following a close second. Anyone interested in the Tachi deck email me, I can't type out names with Twitter restricting me to only 140 characters.
Most Cost-effective Deck: If we're going to talk about which clan has the deck that has the best cost-to-performance ratio, or in other words, which deck has the best financial price-to-wins ratio, quelle surprise, it's Gold Paladin. What more needs to be said about this deck that costs like $20 to build and yet can render that all SP and GR rarity deck crying in its rich-boy shirt and tie? Incredible simple to build and use and it's good for ensuring that the one ass-hat at locals no-one wants to play with doesn't play you either. It's the perfect deck to use for big events, or at least it would be if Bushiroad actually enforced Best 2-of-3 format where trigger sack doesn't then send you hurtling out a championship title faster than Mel Gibson upon the detection of gin.
Most Overall Viable Builds: Or are you talking about which clan when, after you've built its best deck (which needs to at least hold its own against Top Tier for this to have any merit), can then be deconstructed into something else equally viable or has the most useable cards at its disposal? If that's the case, it's Royal Paladin, and you can blame Bushiroad for that, making two main characters (three if you count Kourin I guess) who main Royals. Between Jewel Knights, Sanctuary Guard, Blasters, Seekers, Altmile or some ungodly hybrid of any of them, there's more to exploit out of this clan than any of the others...at least, if you don't mind being locked to later in the game to get shit done, although Swordmy and Blasters give a pretty big middle finger to Generation Break so good on them I guess.
Least Exploitable Deck: Ties in with the best deck criteria I guess, but I still consider this reasonably seperate given that it's perfectly possible for a deck to have no obvious weakness but at the same time do nothing really well to a point it can't take advantage of very many things. But if you are looking for the deck with the fewest weaknesses, or at the very least the deck that has the most answers to situations, then it's Gold Paladin, and you can blame that fucking GB1 lock for that. But assuming you are not a total donglord or you're looking at it in terms of a DECK and not a counter-deck, anything that retires stuff so they don't bother you is a pretty big boon in that department, so probably Gear Chronicle, followed closely by Kagero. I await the day Kagero can multi-attack to the degree of Melem and Time Leap and then your dragon overlords will rule you all. Again.
Deck That Ticks The Most Boxes: So if we're talking about best clan, as in, which clan has the deck that fulfills the above criteria I just mentioned for the definitions of best clan, then as long as you're limited to the ones I just came up with, it's Gold Paladin. Hey, I didn't say that I was going to be looking for the most FUN clan, guys. That's a completely different thing altogether and fun is subjective anyway. It just so happens that other people's tears is my nourishment so Grade 1 rush is the way to go for me, although I must admit I'm leeaning towards Tachikaze recently. So all in all, it turned out Bushiroad during Seasons 2-4 were right all along, even if they weren't the best people to argue the case. The 'scrublord' clan that so many hated really is the clan that Bushiroad would like you all to throw all your money at them for. You poor, poor bastards.
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