Impact of (No) Heavy Storm

August 22, 2010

The biggest change in the upcoming September ban list is Heavy Storm. Many discuss about the release of Dark Hole, but I feel it won’t affect affect the game as much as the ban of Heavy Storm.

When I started to play YuGiOh, Heavy storm was restricted to two. And at that time, there was Harpy Feather Sweep which was hard to get until Premium pack is out. Heavy storm was then restricted to one and it stayed there till now.

It has been regarded as a staple in almost every deck for years, and those which don’t play it are usually special win decks.

Below is a tabulation of cards used in the decks posted on 遊戯王3分クッキング β版 for the current ban list. (Source: カード集計結果 -1003)

Heavy storm is ranked second, after Book of moon. But if you take into the consideration of Heavy storm is being restricted to one and Book of moon is not. It is not hard to see the domination of Heavy storm. 231 used in 231 deck that used it.

For many years, I apply the logic of not to commit more than one my spell or trap on the field under normal circumstances in order to prevent opponent from doing a 1 for 2 or more. It is hard to change a habit that you’ve cultivated for 10 years.

Many have this first thought, you can now commit your cards on the field without the fear of being Heavy storm-ed. You can set Bottomless traphole, Mirror force, Torrential tribute, Book of moon, on your first turn. Then use them according to the situations  you see fit, and unlike the past whereby you have to pick which to set. It seems logical since there is Heavy storm.

I won’t say it’s a wrong mind set. However, when you play at a high level, this may not be enough. Good players are able to guess what are the set cards by the time they are being set, whether it was used at a certain time etc. For example, you summon BF – Shura with Black whirlwind on the field, and opponent did not activate any of his set cards. It is logical to think that he does not have let say Bottomless traphole. However sometimes it is not so straight forward, opponent actually set Mirror force and Bottomless traphole, while you summon BF – Shura with Black whirlwind when you already have another 2 more high attack monsters on field. Opponent did not use Bottomless traphole, because he wants to use Mirror force on all three of your monsters. Then he saved that Bottomless traphole for the next turn after your field has been cleaned by Mirror force this turn. So if you guess he won’t have Bottomless traphole down there, then you are wrong.

When you set all of your traps, you may also ‘bury away’ possible mind game chances which may work to your advantage. If you set let say three cards on your first turn, you are indirectly telling opponent that there is a high chance that the cards in hands are monsters or speed 1 spells. However, if you set 1 card and did not use it after opponent did several things to test it. For example, he summoned and attacked. Next turn, he summoned again, and attacked, yet you still did not activate your set card. He will guess that it’s a proxy trap and save his MST for your future set cards. Now you set another card down, and opponent uses MST on it during your end phase and destroy your ‘real’ trap, example Torrential tribute. He now thinks that it is safe to attempt an OTK since the earlier set card is a proxy. In fact, you actually set a Mirror force and did a 1 for 3 trade. This mind game won’t be possible if you set everything in the first turn, because opponent will be more cautious.

Even without Heavy storm, the mind game of setting cards is still crucial, especially at high level.

In the past, I have written about “Debate of Trap dustshoot”. It is about whether to run Trap dustshoot and also decide it according to metagame. The ban of Heavy storm encourages players to set cards more freely than the past, so the chance of opponent having 4 or more cards on hand is lower. Another words, it is likely to have even less chance to activate it when you draw it in the mid game.

Written by Maxilicious


One comment

  1. Gonna Miss the card. =(

    But I can see it coming back in future formats.

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