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For Rent

Ace’s Multi-Purpose Writing Module #1

The SABC-FU Method for Deck Building

By: Ace of Spades - 02.25.05

            Much like any other hobby there are different classes and divisions within a game. Some miniatures are better than others, some cards should be left in the shoebox. This class idea will help ease the deck-building experience, and help in deciding what should go in the sleeves and deck box and what should stay in the binder.

Class S: Universal Staples

            When starting your deck, one should start with the basics. The Universal Staples are the cards that just about every deck can use efficiently and should use. If you need help determining what these are, you can ask just about any seasoned player for assistance. Though there are certain staples that just about any player can agree on.

-Pot of Greed
-Change of Heart
-Snatch Steal
-Mystical Space Typhoon
-Heavy Storm
-Premature Burial
-Call of the Haunted
-Ring of Destruction

Class A: Dependant Staples

            The following class involves cards that are staples only some of the time. Sort of like how the letter “y” is a vowel sometimes. The cards that are staples depend entirely on your deck’s theme and focus. While Gravity Bind isn’t a staple in a Beast deck, it most surely is in a stall deck. Some common examples of Class A cards include:

-Sanctuary in the Sky (Fairies)
-Gravity Bind (Stall and Burn)
-Messenger of Peace (Stall and Burn)
-Backup Soldier (Exodia)
-Emissary of Darkness (Exodia)
-Marauding Captain (Warriors)
-Limiter Removal (Machines)

Class A cards should always be the next cards to consider when deck building. You’ll want to make sure your dependant staples are in your deck before you go onto other cards.

Class B: Near Staples

            Near staples are the “second-place” of the CCG world. These are the cards that can be game breaking but aren’t required for a win. A Tribe Infecting Virus may help you out when you have a swarm of Gravekeepers staring you down, but it’s just a dead card when you’re top decking or against varied monster types. Common Class B cards include:

-Tribe-Infecting Virus
-Breaker the Magical Warrior
-Sinister Serpent
-Painful Choice
-Magic Cylinder

In deck building, Class B cards are what you’ll want to consider when looking for that extra push in your deck. Need more card negation? Jinzo, Magic Jammer and Magic Drain will help you with that. Having trouble drawing cards? Throw in Reload, Card Destruction or Mirage of Nightmare.

Class C: Support Cards

            Well you have your staples and near staples chosen, now what? Get some cards that help out your theme. If you’re using a deck with Agent of Judgment Saturn, how are you going to increase our LP? You’ll need something like Mystic Wok. What’s going to support your Warriors charging into battle? Warrior Returning Alive and Command Knight will be great assistance. Class C cards vary, though there are a couple of guidelines for them.

-Soldiers using a single type. If you’re running a Beast deck, choose some high-ATK beast cards, such as Berserk Gorilla or Mad Dog of Darkness

-Spells and Traps specializing in your area. Ceasefire does damage, so it works in your burn deck. Got water monsters? Legendary Ocean and Abyss Soldier are fine additions.

Class C cards are typically the last cards to be chosen. They are what fill up the remaining slots. If you have 39 cards in your Machine deck, why not throw in one more X Head Cannon or Mechanical Chaser, bringing your count to 40 cards.

Class F: Non-Applicable cards

            This category can mean different things to different people. This represents cards you’d be best off leaving in your shoebox or binder. If it doesn’t contribute to your theme or it isn’t a universally usable card, it shouldn’t be in your deck. The cards in Class F typically are decided before deck building begins or after Class A. It’s hard to pin down Class F cards, but here are some examples.

-Maruading Captain in a Fairy deck
-Limiter Removal in a Water deck
-Banisher of Light in a Chaos deck

Once you have a theme, the cards in Class F are easily determined. It’s basically a list of what you won’t need.

Class U: Utter Junk

            The cards in this class are typically a given. No self-respecting duelist would be caught dead with these cards in his deck. This is essentially the negative version of Class S. I can assure you, no matter what your deck, you’ll never want these cards in here. Ever. Some common ones are:

-Skull Servant
-Sand Stone
-Two Pronged Attack

I… I can’t even talk about these anymore… they’re… Oh no! They’re eating through the protective suit! Agh!

Deck Building: The SABC-FU Method**

            If you’ve been reading this attentively, you’ll have a pretty good idea of what this entails. The SABC-FU method, besides having a catchy name, presents a marketable method for efficient deck building. There are five steps to the SABC-FU method.

            For this explanation, we’ll use a sample deck, a Light/Fairy deck centering around Archlord Zerato, for the purposes of demonstrating the method well.

The first step would be to select cards from S-Class. We’ll use the following:

            1x Change of Heart
            1x Pot of Greed
            1x Heavy Storm
            1x Mystical Space Typhoon
            1x Premature Burial
            1x Snatch Steal
            1x Call of the Haunted
            Current Count: 7 cards

On to A-Class. We’re trying to use Fairies and Light monsters right? And we’re centering around Archlord Zerato, so we might have to use one of him. He lists Sanctuary in the Sky in his summon requirement, so we should load up on those, as well as Warrior of Zera.

            1x Archlord Zerato
            3x Warrior of Zera
            3x Sanctuary in the Sky
            Current Count: 14 cards

At B-Class, what are some good cards? We can use Tribe Infecting Virus to help control the field, and Magic Cylinder and Ring of Destruction will help with offense. Sinister Serpent and Cyber Jar could come in handy too. Waboku and Sakuretsu Armor will do well for defense. Finally, the deck needs some drawing power, so Reload will be helpful.

            1x Tribe Infecting Virus

1x Sinister Serpent
1x Cyber Jar
1x Magic Cylinder
1x Ring of Destruction
 2x Waboku
 2x Sakuretsu Armor
 1x Reload
 Current Count: 24 cards

We have 18 slots left for Class C cards. We’re using light types, so Thunder Nyan Nyan would make a nice attacker. Some offensive fairies would do nicely, so we can put in Hysteric Fairy and Airknight Parshath. We could certainly make use of Zaborg the Thunder Monarch and Blade Knight for Light monsters. Since we’ll have plenty of light in the Graveyard, Freed the Brave Wanderer and Soul of Purity and Light would make fine choices. Magician of Faith will also help get Sanctuaries back if we lose them. Nobleman of Crossout is a nice choice, as is Scapegoat. Finally, since we’re running Fairies, Cestus of Dagla will certainly increase power. Finally, we’ll use Magic Drain because we need some Spell negation as well as ways to thin the opponent’s hand.

            1x Zaborg the Thunder Monarch
            1x Soul of Purity and Light
            1x Airknight Parshath
            3x Thunder Nyan Nyan
            2x Hysteric Fairy
            1x Freed the Brave Wanderer
            1x Blade Knight
1x Magician of Faith
1x Nobleman of Crossout
1x Scapegoat
2x Cestus of Dagla
2x Magic Drain

            Current Count: 40 cards

Checking Class F to see what we’re missing, it looks like most of the cards won’t do much for Fairies. Marauding Captain won’t help much and neither will Limiter Removal, for example. Checking the shoebox, they’re definitely nothing in Class-U for us.

Presenting a tourney-worthy deck built using the SABC-FU Method:

1x Archlord Zerato
1x Zaborg the Thunder Monarch
1x Soul of Purity and Light
1x Airknight Parshath
3x Thunder Nyan Nyan
2x Hysteric Fairy
1x Freed the Brave Wanderer
1x Blade Knight
1x Tribe Infecting Virus
3x Warrior of Zera
1x Cyber Jar
1x Magician of Faith
1x Sinister Serpent
1x Pot of Greed
1x Change of Heart
1x Snatch Steal
1x Mystical Space Typhoon
1x Heavy Storm
1x Premature Burial
3x Sanctuary in the Sky
2x Cestus of Dagla
1x Reload
1x Nobleman of Crossout
1x Scapegoat
1x Call of the Haunted
1x Ring of Destruction
2x Sakuretsu Armor
2x Waboku
2x Magic Drain

Using the SABC-FU method will greatly assist you in deck-building, as will the identification key. It’s an easy way to keep track of cards and deck counts when trading or constructing new decks. 

-Ace of Spades, who won this column in a card game or something

Ace can be contacted at ctrlaceofspades@gmail.com

**For the record, it’s pronounced “sab-ik-foo”. Don’t question, just politely nod and agree.



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