Best way to sum up the year: it wasn’t 2020. Hello Pojo Readers, Crunch$G here to go through the entire 2021 calendar year for the Yu-Gi-Oh Trading Card Game and see how things went in terms of product releases and meta updates through these sets. Sadly, the sets this year were not as good as 2020, but in exchange the restrictions from the pandemic have slightened down a bit to where next year we get in person YCS events again. There were still some nice things to come through the year, it’s just you had to look for them deeper compared to 2020 and the rapid-fire bangers of sets we got that year. It’ll be an interesting year to break down, so we’ll go through all the products, giveaways, and F/L lists we got this year to see how it all went.

The Lost Art Promotion 2021

Instead of doing an entry for each time a new Lost Art was released, I might as well just get them all out of the way at the start of the year. We got 11 new Lost Arts and 1 reprint this year in the Dark Magician Girl’s 10th Anniversary Artwork. The new Lost Arts released included Raging Eria, VWXYZ-Dragon Catapult Cannon, Vampire Vamp, Blazing Hiita, Celestia, Lightsworn Angel, Barrel Dragon, Storming Wynn, Gemini Elf, Enchanting Fitting Room, Elemental HERO Burstinatrix, and Foolish Return. There were some decent ones this year, with Burstinatirx and Gemini Elf likely being the best new ones followed by Barrel Dragon, and another chance to access Dark Magician Girl was nice. It wasn’t the best year for the promotion, but it’s going to be like that as we run out of censored artworks to bring over. At least we can expect Don Zaloog next year.

Legendary Duelists: Season 2

Season 1 might of not been the best product, but it was certainly improved upon with Season 2. We finally got some much needed reprints for Legendary Duelists: White Dragon Abyss and Sisters of the Rose with all the popular new cards from those sets and the nice reprints added in here from the original sets and just in general for this product. We also got 2 new cards with Blue-Eyes Abyss Dragon and Galaxy-Eyes Afterglow Dragon, being nice updates for the respective archetypes, even if not being meta. We got a bunch of other needed reprints in those Secret slots with Superdreadnought Rail Cannon Juggernaut Liebe, Urgent Schedule, Garden Rose Maiden, Photon Orbital, Bingo Machine, Go!!!, etc. The main set also had some nice Ultras like Blue-Eyes Alternative White Dragon, Sage with Eyes of Blue, Blue-Eyes Spirit Dragon, Cyber Dragon Nachster, Cyberload Fusion, Blackwing – Simoon the Poison Wind, Black Rose Moonlight Dragon, and Super Express Bullet Train. There were even a few good commons like Cyber Dragon Sieger and Harpie’s Feather Storm. Having the dice this time around was great as well. A big improvement from Season 1, and we know Season 3 will be much more popular despite some of the cards reprinted in Brothers of Legend at the end of the year.

Blazing Vortex

As much as I just want to say this was the set with Pot of Prosperity and move along, I might as well talk about Blazing Vortex. In all fairness, Pot of Prosperity wasn’t the only meta-relevant card in the set, as we also got Tri-Brigade Kitt. Underworld Goddess of the Closed World has potential and Live Twin Lil-la Treat is nice for the archetype, but there’s not much in this set. As much as I like Springans, it’s the worst archetype from the Fallen of Albaz line so far. S-Force is pretty underwhelming, and don’t get me started on how bad War Rocks are. Fabled support is cool, but the Deck is still fragile. No matter how many Windwitch cards we get, the best way to use them will still be the engine that was already printed. Metalfoes would of been cool if we had Electrumite. Heavenly Zephyr – Miradora is way too niche of a hand trap. The Armed Dragon cards were cool, but you were never really going to see Armed Dragons become meta. You got some cool Starlights like Pot of Prosperity, Trishula, Dragon of the Ice Barrier, Live Twin Lil-la Treat, and Armed Dragon Thunder LV10 and you just hope you don’t get Heavenly Zephyr – Miradora. I just find it hard to not see this as not being one of the top 10 worst sets in the game’s history, if not on the bubble of that at least.

OTS Tournament Pack 15

Alright, OTS time. OTS Pack 14 left a high standard for 15 to follow, and in all honesty, it failed to deliver on that front. The best Ulti in terms of meta relevancy was Crystron Halqifibrax, even after all the best Tuners were banned. Besides that, you had Armed Dragon LV10 as a collectible to match LV5 and LV7 and Dark Requiem Xyz Dragon, even if not all PK plays opt to play it. The Supers were at least nice finally giving Shaddoll Dragon and Zoodiac Boarbow a foil upgrade, alongside some of the recent cards like Noctovision Dragon, Proxy F Magician, and Dogmatika Punishment. The World Legacy Token was pretty cool as well. Looking at the commons, nothing there was really big besides maybe Windwitch – Ice Bell. It’s fine considering you get this as free prizing for entering a tournament, with you earning more if you won of course, and at the time I’m sure it was fine to get an OTS Pack for spending $30 on product while you still cool, but this might be the worst OTS Pack this year.

Structure Deck: Freezing Chains

I mean, I can’t get too upset at this since many of us, myself included, voted for Ice Barriers to get a Structure Deck mainly cause we wanted to see what it’d be like. This was never going to even be a rogue Deck unless you overhauled the archetype completely, but now it’s somewhat more playable since it’s able to do something now. The new Trishula upgrade was pretty nice to see, and makes for an alright generic Level 11 Synchro, even if it can’t compare to old Trishula. The Dewloren errata was good so we can finally get rid of all those loops. We got about 90% of the Ice Barrier archetype reprinted, including all the Synchros. We also had a few other okay reprints like Ronintoadin, Dupe Frog, Moulinglacia the Elemental Lord, Silent Angler, Where Arf Thou?, Appointer of the Red Lotus, and Crackdown. The Deck was fine for fans of the archetype, but almost no reason to get this if you didn’t care for Ice Barriers. No insane reprints and we didn’t get Crossout Designator in here like the OCG did, we’d have to wait on that still.

Palladium Oracle Mahad Sweepstakes

I’m probably going to remember this more fondly considering I won the sweepstakes and got a copy, but the fact Konami does these is still pretty cool. The fact you could just post a card you could always depend on, whether it was a physical copy or just some image of the card you found online, and get the Mahad was pretty good if you were one of the 540 that won a copy (300 in the US and 240 in Latin America). The Palladium Oracle Mahad did look nice as well with the blue text and the Secret Rare. It was nothing out of this world, it was still honestly just the Secret Rare foiling with a blue name. Still, I won’t complain if Konami ever wanted to give away these cool pieces for people’s collections, won’t mind entering more of these contests as well.

March 15th F/L List

Ah, this time of the year. The first F/L list dropped pretty late into the year, having to wait til March to see the first one. It makes sense I guess with the previous one being December 2020. Anyways, we got a majority of the changes being unlimits on this list with just 3 bans and 1 lone limit. The cards banned were Number S0: Utopic ZEXAL, True King of All Calamities, and Union Carrier. Two cards that basically prevented the opponent from playing the game and another in Union Carrier that allowed for interactions that simply shouldn’t of been a thing. The lone limit was to Cyber Angel Benten, which hit Drytron pretty fast considering I believe this was the first F/L list after them being legal. Unlimits got several cards back with Dewloren coming to 3 with the errata, Dragon Buster Destruction Sword coming back after the reason it was banned was just banned this list, Firewall Dragon to return on April 14th with its errata being released in Ghosts From the Past, Ignister Prominence since Pendulums were doing far less in the meta since Electrumite’s ban, The Phantom Kninght’s of Rusty Bardiche since being at one or three really doesn’t matter when you play one anyways, Rank-Up-Magic Argent Chaos Force now that we finally got rid of Number S0, and True King’s Return because the archetype will do nothing with it at three. It was a minimal list on paper, but we got rid of some toxic cards and cleaned up a little, so I can’t really call it all that bad.

Ghosts From the Past

The previous Spring reprint sets were so good, so how does Konami follow up this year? By making this year’s be hard carried by the Ghost Rares. On paper, bringing Ghost Rares back in this capacity is nice, but not when it’s literally all there is to a set. The only real good reprint was Evenly Matched while the rest were just nice foil upgrades, stuff that was expensive due to a lone printing, or just some random cards we didn’t need reprinted. The Ghost Rare choices were mostly nice. Getting Dark Magician in the highest rarity is really cool, and Blue-Eyes Alternative White Dragon is nice in Ghost Rare until we get the original once again in the SDK art this time. Crystal Wing Synchro Dragon is cool considering Clear Wing already had the Ghost, and Black Luster Soldier – Super Solider is a nice BLS Ghost Rare, even if I would of preferred Envoy of the Beginning. Firewall Dragon getting a new artwork that was exclusively Ghost Rare at the time was a questionable choice, considering it just got the errata this set and it needed to be accessible to the playerbase. We’d wait a while for both of those problems to be solved, but Firewall Dragon should of had the original art in Ghost Rare at least. For the new stuff, you got some nice archetype updates to stuff like Dragunity and Nekroz. The new archetypes, Starry Knights and Sunvine/Sunavalon, were pretty bad in my opinion. Overall, the only non-Ghost Rare that was really all that good being Evenly Matched, which was removed from the Charmer Structure Deck, doesn’t make for a good product.

Ancient Guardians

Well time for another weak set. We’ve hit Ancient Guardians, and there isn’t really anything here. Ogdoadics finally gave Snake Rain a use and gave us a decent Reptile archetype, we just needed something stronger if we wanted Reptiles to become meta, even with a card as strong on paper as Snake Rain helping boost the archetype. Solfachords are a pretty underwhelming Pendulum archetype, but can offer something nice to any Pendulum strategy. Finally, we get Ursarctics to give us the closest thing we’ll probably ever get to Dark Synchros from the anime. These are all 3 cool archetypes, but nothing strong enough to make any sort of impact. You had decet Collectors Rares in this set at least with Dinowrestler Pankratops, Skull Meister, and Trade-In. Just the issue is those are the best Collectors Rares with one of them being Limited, the second is not even the best hand-trap in the game, and the third is a draw card used in very specific Decks. Not the greatest side set we’ve had, would of been fine if we had this with the original setup of Secrets and Supers so some of these cards could get that guaranteed foil upgrade or reprint, instead the lone Snake Rain foil print is a Collectors Rare.

Remote Duel Extravaganza Participation Card

It’s nice to have an alternative to in person events like YCS events, and Konami decided to offer up some of these as well with Remote Duel Extravaganzas. We would eventually have a YCS for Remote Duels, but a simiple Extravaganza is nice, especially getting a nice reward just for participating. Just for entering, you got an Amabie promo card, which while isn’t a good card, is a good symbol for us beating this pandemic. I’m sure the Extravaganzas are fun as well. They can’t beat in person events, but being able to play the game with others is great to be able to do. Hopefully we get the Super Rare version of this promo in the future like the OCG did.

Lightning Overdrive

Well we got an upgrade over Blazing Vortex at the very least, but it isn’t the greatest still. Lightning Overdrive is the second core set of the year and brought us a few meta relevant cards and other cool archetypes and support. Drytron was the biggest winner of the set with Mu-Beta Fafnir and Diviner of the Heralds. We got a nice generic Level 10 Synchro with a good niche like Ruddy Rose Dragon. Utopia was the next in line to get some support, and they got some really good cards with the ZS pieces. Amazement made their debut and make for a decent Trap engine with their boss monster. We got Ki-sikil’s holiday form with Ki-sikil Frost in this set. Scrap Raptor joins the long list of some of the best commons in this game’s history. Albion the Branded Dragon is good in a Despia/Branded strategy using Fallen of Albaz. Tri-Brigade Bearbrumm the Rampant Rampager is a great card for the archetype. We also finally got the Charmer Link for the LIGHT Attribute. There were some downers like War Rocks continuning and cards like Book of Lunar Eclipse and Bahalutiya taking up Starlight slots, even if we had 3 other good Starlights like Ki-sikil Frost, Lyna the Light Charmer, Lusterous, and Black Rose Dragon. It’s a decent upgrade over Blazing Vortex, but we will see better later on.

OTS Tournament Pack 16

Time for the second, and probably best, OTS Pack of the year. It might just straight up be the best OTS Pack of all time. Getting Ultis of Forbidden Droplet and the alternate art of Cyber Dragon alone is just great, and the third Ulti being Firewall Dragon is nice as well, even if it fails in comparison to the other two. We got some nice Super Rares in here with upgrades to King of the Skull Servants (outside Speed Duels), Tri-Brigade Nervall, Geonator Transverser, Virtual World Gate – Qinglong, Drytron Zeta Aldhibah, and Drytron Delta Altais. The only negative is all of those, minus Qinglong and King of the Skull Servants, would be repeated or done better in the 2021 Tins. We also got a nice reprint for Cyber-Stein in Super, alongside the line where it isn’t a Cyber card to go with the Cyber Strike Deck later in the year. You also saw Mausoleum of the Emperor get the foil upgrade and a massive text update. There are some nice commons in here like Cyber Saurus (also with the update to not be a Cyber card), Royal Magical Library, Power Filter, and Reptilianne Hydra. None of the commons are big, but they’re nice to have. Overall it is probably the best OTS Pack we’ve seen, even if now it’s mainly carried by the Ultimate Rares.

Egyptian God Decks

So now we get to what has become our annual slot of a Starter Deck replacement. This year, instead of a Speed Duel Deck, we get Egyptian God Decks. If you look at the list for these Decks, you can 100% see these are Starter Decks without the branding.  We got some nice Egyptian God support like Soul Crossing, Fist of Fate, and Thunderforce Attack alongside some other cards we were missing like Angel 01, Level Resist Wall, Millennium Seeker, and Tellus the Little Angel, but nothing is gonna change the game. The reprints aren’t that great either with some of the best ones being Harpie’s Feather Duster, Ahrima, the Wicked Warden, and Lair of Darkness. Nothing in here was really that major minus maybe the Feather Duster reprint, so it was pair of Structure Decks you didn’t really need, though the name might make these good long-term holds sealed.

July 1st F/L List

Well we hit another list to update the game and while not a lot happened here, it still brought some necessary changes. We had 2 lone bans for Guardragon Elpy and Zoodiac Drident, which are some solid hits overall, and in hindsight we can probably say Drident needed a ban again with something like Tri-Brigade and Zeus existing, while we also neuter Dragon Link by getting rid of Elpy. The only hits for cards that went to 1 were Miscellaneosaurus and Striker Dragon to help keep Dinosaurs and Dragon Link in check. We did get 3 unbans with Performapal Skullcrobat Joker, Salamangreat Miragestallio, and Sky Striker Mobilize – Engage! to give life to their respective Decks. Double Iris Magician also went from 1 to 2 and Symbol of Heritage went from 1 to 3, which aren’t any major changes. It was an okay list for the size of it.

King’s Court

With Toon Chaos being no doubt a smashing success the previous year, we follow it up with a sequel as we get King’s Court this year. We get 15 new Collector’s Rares in here which is always good, with the best ones in terms of reprints being Lightning Storm, Rivalry of Warlords, and Reinforcement of the Army. We also had Number F0: Utopic Draco Future imported in here, just a little late with Drident getting banned a few weeks prior. There were also some cool new support cards for the Poker Knights used by Yugi in the anime, which are better Egyptian God support cards than some of the cards in the Egyptian God Decks. There was also the surprise of the Millennium Ultra Rares of the Egyptian Gods, and in America you had the misprinted Millennium Secret Rares. Now they don’t look too great since you can barely see the Millennium foiling, and they 100% have not aged well in the short-term, but any bonus is always nice to see. King’s Court is a good follow-up to Toon Chaos, considering how hard it can be to recapture that lightning in a bottle that was Toon Chaos.

Dawn of Majesty

The second to last core set of the year, and while it wasn’t the greatest on release, it will most likely age well going into 2022. Dawn of Majesty gave us some Synchron support as the cover archetype with a Majestic Star Dragon evolution that’s far better than the original and has become one of the many Synchro Bosses the Synchron strategy will go into, alongside a great new Synchron Tuner. We also had the Despia archetype debut in this set to become a decent rogue strategy at the start that will become one of the top Decks in 2022 when we get the Albaz Structure Deck. Magikey is also a cute and decent archetype that can make some interesting plays and gave us a Level 4 Fusion Tuner for Instant Fusion. Speaking of Instant Fusion, we got a retrain of it in Ready Fusion to summon your Level 6 or lower vanilla Fusions. There’s a decent Level 9 Synchro in Stellar Wind Wolfrayet and a good Rank 5 with Chronomally Vimana. We also got the next TCG exclusive archetype in the Beetroopers, a far improvement over War Rocks and a strategy that has seen tournament success actually. We also had a Starlight Stardust Dragon, which is great to go with the Black Rose Dragon of the previous set. It’s a decent set that has a long-term meta impact we kinda foresaw on release with Despia.

2021 Tin of Ancient Battles

Well we hit the 2021 Tins, which were very hyped considering the sets that were going to be reprinted in here. We had a feeling they wouldn’t throw the kitchen sink at this tin considering how good the four sets were, and that’s what happened as we didn’t get reprints for Forbidden Droplet, Lightning Storm, or Accesscode Talker in here, but these tins are still great. We got the main Dogmatika and Tri-Brigade cards from 2020 reprinted in this set, which are still meta relevant strategies. Triple Tactics Talent, Divine Arsenal AA-ZEUS – Sky Thunder, and Ice Dragon’s Prison made the cut for some decent staples. We got a bunch of nice rarity upgrades for several cards like Parallel eXceed and Cross-Sheep. The main selling point of this tin, however, was the import of Crossout Designator in here, which is still a great card even if it hasn’t made the impact we expected it to make here in the TCG. There’s always a lot of break down with Mega Tins, and there’s a lot I know I didn’t mention, but these were really good tins with a ton of great reprints, even without a few notable exceptions.

October 1st F/L List

Not a lot happened between F/L lists between July and October, but we did need a few more changes, so here we are. The only ban this list was to Zoodiac Barrage of all things, which really suggests Konami is somewhat getting tired of Zeus. The limits this list went to Eva to slow Drytron down a bit, Prank-Kids Meow-Meow-Mu to prevent Prank-Kids from comboing off a single card more than once, and Fire Formation – Tenki as an indirect hit to Tri-Brigade and their consistency. The semi-limts were all cards that were previously limited as we saw Danger! Nessie!, Performapal Skullcrobat Joker, and Emergency Teleport go to 2 and we are likely to see these come to 3 sometime in 2022. The only unlimit went to Double Iris Magician, which I’m sure we could of all seen coming. It was kind of a dud list considering not much happened. Prank-Kids are still an alright option, especially with the Adventurer Tokens coming. Drytron and Tri-Brigade are also still meta options. Not much really changed, just some of the best Decks got weaker.

OTS Tournament Pack 17

Time for the last OTS Pack of the year, which now has to follow the OTS Pack with one of the best sets of 3 Ultis any of them have ever given us. This one does decent to follow up at least, with the big Ultimate Rare being Infinite Impermanence. You also had Ultis for Number 39: Utopia to go with all the Utopia stuff and make another protagonist ace in Ulti, and you also had Black Luster Soldier – Soldier of Chaos in Ulti for another reprint, though I would of preferred if this was Envoy of the Beginning. Super Rares are decent overall. Power Bond and Cyber Dragon Nova go well with the Cyber Strike Deck and give the cards another foil print. The Great Emperor Penguin and Penguin Brave are nice for Penguin fans with their Burst of Destiny support. Resonance Insect is outstanding for Beetroopers to get in foil and reprinted in general. We get some Tenyi cards in Super with Flawless Perfection of the Tenyi and Vessel for the Dragon Cycle to go with the impending Swordsouls. Also we had cards from Lightning Overdrive upgraded to foil with Basal Rose Shoot and Scrap Raptor, since those couldn’t be Supers in the main set for some reason. There’s also an Ice Barrier Token, which seems late considering the Structure Deck was at the beginning of the year. Commons have a few nice cards like Dark Simorgh, T.G. Wonder Magician, Inzektor Dragonfly, Yazi, Evil of the Yang Zing, Painful Decision, and Shaman of the Tenyi. It’s a fine OTS Pack with some nice old cards getting a foil upgrade, not a big fan of Scrap Raptor and Basal Rose Shoot since they seem like likely candidates for foils in the 2022 Tins, but early foil print I guess. Ultis are nice, especially that Imperm finally coming in Ulti. It’s a good OTS Pack.

Structure Deck: Cyber Strike

Speaking of the Cyber Strike Deck, here we are with the other Deck voted on by popular demand in the OCG, this time something more playable than Ice Barriers. This is the second Cyber Dragon related Structure Deck, but this one takes more of a focus on the Cyberdark side of things. We get a sick new boss monster with Cyberdark End Dragon in here to really give you the vibe of an anime boss monster. There’s some decent consistency cards for a pure Cyber Dragon Deck or a more Cyberdark-focused build with Cyberdark Chimera and Cybernetic Horizon, and Cyberdark Realm is a great card for anything Cyberdark. Attachment Cybern, Cyberdark Invasion, and Cyber Eternal are okay as well. Reprints in here are great with the main one being Infinite Impermanence in Super Rare, alongside most of the Cyber Dragon and Cyberdark cards, including Cyber Dragon Herz, Cyber Dragon Nachster, and Cyber Emergency. We also have Gale Dogra, Gizmek Orochi, the Serpentron Sky Slasher, and Jizukiru, the Star Destroying Kaiju for other decent reprints. It’s a good Structure Deck, especially considering Cyber Dragon has performed decently as a rogue option in the past, and this might give the Deck another chance to repeat that success.

Blue-Eyes Alternative White Dragon Giveaway

Another giveaway, a second one which I was able to win. We get another card in Secret Rare with a blue name for a social media giveaway, this time representing Kaiba with Blue-Eyes Alternative White Dragon. This is, in my opinion, a better giveaway card compared to Palladium Oracle Mahad with the massive love that Blue-Eyes gets from the playerbase and the fact this is a popular choice to run in Blue-Eyes Decks. This went out to another 540 players, with 300 in the US and Canada and 240 in Latin America. All you had to do was post some Blue-Eyes merchandise on your Twitter and/or Instagram to qualify to win. I assume the EU will get a giveaway for this at some point in 2022. It’s a great card for many collectors to have and I hope Konami continues to make good choices for giveaways like this in the future, assuming they continue them.

Legendary Duelists: Synchro Storm

Another Legendary Duelists, thankfully that didn’t get delayed until 2022 like initially expected. Many people were excited for this after the lackluster showing from Rage of Ra minus the Ghost Rare. We did get a new Ghost Rare in here as well, this time of the new Crystal Clear Wing Synchro Dragon, likely due to the TCG already having Clear Wing and Crystal Wing in Ghost Rare. It doesn’t compare to The Winged Dragon of Ra, but it’s nice to go with the other Synchro Dragons. We also got a bunch of new Speedroid support which is overall pretty decent, as well as new Lyrilusc cards to go with the Lyrilusc Tri-Brigade strategy. The Fleur support from Sherry to finally make a somewhat competent Deck from her from the anime also gave us one of the best Synchros we’ve seen in a long time: Baronne de Fleur. It’s a really good Legendary Duelists to follow up from the bust that was Rage of Ra. This at least offered several new cards people wanted to play in top and rogue Decks.

Burst of Destiny

The last, and undisupted best, core set of the year was saved for last in Burst of Destiny. The cover theme this time around was Rokkets, but nothing was really going to impact the popular Dragon Link besides maybe Rokket Caliber. The main cards we were excited for were outside this support. We got two new meta-relevant archetypes in this set with Floowandereeze and, most importantly, Swordsoul. Incredible Ecclesia, the Virtuous goes well with Swordsoul, but will likely be a popular card in Despia Albaz in 2022 as well. We got some other good cards as well with Lord of the Heavenly Prison for control Decks and Small World to make any monster in the game searchable. We got a second wave of Beetrooper support, but it felt lackluster compared to the archetype’s start. There were some other nice cards in this set as well like Cupid Pitch and Machina Ruinforce, but the biggest card of the set was Destiny HERO – Destroyer Phoenix Enforcer as an alternative, and overall superior option, to Red-Eyes Dark Dragoon due to the engine needed for Destroyer Phoenix Enforcer being far better. Burst of Destiny gave us a meta update we really needed throughout the year considering no other set really made that big of a meta impact. It’ll likely go down as one of the better sets of all time.

Maximum Gold: El Dorado

We hit gold yet again with Maximum Gold: El Dorado following up the original Maximum Gold. We get more alternate artworks as well for cards like Red-Eyes Black Dragon, Rescue Cat, Destiny HERO – Plasma, Familiar-Possessed – Lyna, Danger! Bigfoot!, Ghost Mourner & Moonlit Chill, Eldlich the Golden Lord, Black Rose Dragon, Knightmare Unicorn, I:P Masquerena, and Firewall Dragon. We also got new cards this time, mainly the Numerounious cards from the duel with Don Thousand in the Zexal anime. We also had several needed reprints for cards like Accesscode Talker, Chamber Dragonmaid, and Invocation. There were also some other nice reprints like the LOB artworks for Blue-Eyes White Dragon and Dark Magician, alongside both Red-Eyes Darkness Metal Dragon artworks, Mystic Mine, Torrential Tribute, and Pot of Extravagance. The Rares were also full of several decent cards as well, including a few core cards for archetypes like Prank-Kids, Weather, and Eldlich. It’s a great followup from last year and another set that’ll age greatly in a year more than likely.

Brothers of Legend

The final set of the year comes in the form of the Battles of Legend saga under a new name: Brothers of Legend. It came later into the year than normal, but they made up from the disappointment that was Battles of Legend: Armageddon. We got much better reprints this year like Forbidden Droplet, Magicians’ Souls, Evil HERO Adusted Gold, Evil HERO Malicious Bane, and Nibiru, the Primal Being as the main cards. We got some great new cards as well in here like Number 4: Stealth Kragen, Wing Requital, Piri Reis Map, and a couple of new Altergeist cards to name some. The Starlights in this set are nice as well with Red-Eyes Dark Dragoon being great for Duel Monsters era collectors and we also got a new Astral Language card with Number 17: Leviathian Dragon for Number Hunters to go with the reprint of previous prize card, Number 89: Diabolosis the Mind Hacker. It’s a much better set than Armageddon and one of the better sets of the year. Hopefully Brothers of Legend 2 continues the trend of once again having good reprint sets like this.

RUSH DUEL: Dawn of the Battle Royale!! Video Game

rush-duel-1Now we get to the last release for the year on the TCG side of things, and the first taste of Rush Duels for the TCG. A new video game dropped virtually on the Nintendo Switch based off the Sevens anime and the Rush Dueling mechanic that came to Japan in 2020. This game lets us Rush Duel for the first time outside Asian territories and is an overall fun experience. Sadly we got no physical release, meaning no promos of Dark Magician Girl or Pot of Greed in the Rush Duel style. Hopefully getting this game does suggest we might get physical Rush Duel cards in the future for TCG territories. It’s a nice start for Rush Dueling for us, though I still dont’ know about the $40 price tag.

In Conclusion

It was a rough start of the year to be completely honest. We got some of the worst products we’ve seen in a long time with stuff like Blazing Vortex, Ancient Guardians, and Structure Deck: Freezing Chains. Ghosts From the Past was a complete letdown compared to the high expectations at the tail end of 2020 into early 2021. Things eventually started to pick up later in the year after King’s Court with some great sets at the backend of the year that will all likely age well. The meta updates with the F/L lists were fine overall this year, nothing too big actually. We had hopes for physical YCS events in early 2022 after going without a single one in 2021, and those hopes are still there for later in 2022, but Remote Duel YCS events and hopefully Master Duel will hold us over for now. I’m hoping for a better 2022 for product, banlists, and for us to go back to normal with physical events. 2022 has a decent start with the first four months, so we’ll have to see how much better 2022 is by the end if it all.

Thanks for reading,