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Yu-Gi-Oh/Building Ritual Deck

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QUESTION: Hi Exo,

I need a little help building a deck. I've been playing Yu-Gi-Oh! for a couple of days now using my friends' decks, my favourite being centered solely around the Black Luster Soldier and I really like the playing style. I'd like to build my own deck so I can play off my own back and pose a threat to my friends - that is to say, I'll be playing entirely informally.

So, my question is this; can you help me build a (what exactly IS the difference between Formats?) deck based around Ritual Cards? A comprehensive list (or directions for finding one) of any and all types of cards that relate in some way to Ritual Monsters would be of unparalleled use so I can both decide what to include in my deck and know what to expect from a deck structured to beat mine. I feel this is of particular importance as, as a novice, I'm having a hard time of even knowing where to start looking for related cards! A recommended structure for the deck (main Monsters, etc.) would also be of great help, as long as it's not too rigid so I can improve the deck's personality with some of my own picks.  

I hope you have the time to answer my question, and thanks in advance if you do!

Regards,
'Jambo Mac'

ANSWER: You have a number of choices here...

Most Ritual decks focus around a single Ritual monster (Maybe playing a single copy of another as an alternative) and focus on getting that monster to the table and using its effect(s) to their advantage.
A Few examples:

Demise - A deck based around "Demise - the King of Armageddon" and Insects, this deck uses Demise to destroy all your opponent's cards, and usually follows up with Doom Dozer and Megamorph to inflict exactly 8000 damage in a single turn.

Northwemko - A Deck that bases around "Divine Grace - Northwemko" and indestructible cards (For Example "Magical Citadel of Endymion" or "The Seal of Orichalcos") since while Northwemko is attached to one of these she cannot be destroyed until it is (and that's quite tricky...).

Relinquished - A deck based around the ritual monster of the same name - focuses on Summoning Relinquished to steal a reasonably sized monster from your opponent and then using the effects of the Ritual Djinn monsters to keep the opposition off the field until it can end the game.

Herald of Perfection - A deck consistening almost entirely of Fiary-type monsters, based around summoning Herald of Perfection and then negating all your opponent's cards.

These decks all have the same kind of support engine - based around Manju of the Ten Thousand Hands, Senju of the thousand Hands and Sonic Bird.

The other kind of Ritual deck is Gishki, which effectively has its own version of each of the search cards, and usually focuses around summoning one or More Evigishki monsters via "Contact with the Aquamirror". This deck isn't really complete until the release of Hidden Arsenal 7 though.

If you choose a ritual monster (Not necessarily one of the ones above), I can build you a deck around it.
If you want to build around multiple rituals (not more than 2...) then it helps if they're DARK or EARTH and the same level (so as to take advanatge of the "Contract with the Abyss" or "Earth Chant" Ritual Spells).

For more choices, a list of ritual monsters can be found here:

http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/List_of_Ritual_Monsters

And you can find more information on potential decks here:

http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Ritual

Let me know via follow-up.


To Answer your other question - there are currently 2 Yu-Gi-Oh! formats:

Advanced Format:
This is the main format used for competitive tournaments. It's defined by a list of Forbidden (Banned), Limited (1 copy per deck) and Semi-Limted (2 copies per deck) cards, which limit what you can play.
This list serves to eliminate cards that are too powerful or degenerate from the metagame.
(There are currently no banned Ritual Monsters).

The Forbidden and Limited List can be found here:
www.yugioh-card.com/en/limited/

Traditional Format:
This format has Limited and Semi-Limited cards, but no Forbidden cards.
Instead, all cards that would be Forbidden in Advanced Format are limited to 1 copy per deck.
This format isn't usually played on the competitive scene due to the abundance of First Turn/One Turn kills and incredibly powerful combos.

I usually build for Advanced format, then let you add back in any Banned cards you'd like for casual play.
This is because the decks that I build for Traditional Format would look vastly different from the ones you'd play for fun (Most Traditional Format Decks are just piles of banned cards...)
However I can build for Traditional format is you really want me to.

Let me know what you'd like via follow-up question.

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Well, first of all, thanks for replying so quickly!

I think I'd like to build my deck around the Advanced Format then. It looks like my flatmate uses a Traditional deck though, those banned cards are really OP'd! Thanks for explaining the formats, really cleared things up.

I've had a look at the cards you mentioned, and I like the idea of building around Demise - however I don't think I will as my main opponent tends to whittle down my life points VERY quickly (3x Solar Flare Dragon, Royal Firestorm Guards, 2x Blaze Accelerator and 3x Volcanic Scattershot) and the thought of sacrificing 2,000 points as my main strategy against him doesn't sit well.

Instead, I think I'd like to look into building a Gishki/Dark Ritual deck, although I do know that the Gishki cards have different Ritual Summoning cards (how do they work exactly?). My flatmate already has the Black Luster Soldier card that I can use and a couple of Sonic Bird cards, although I'd have to pick up the Gishki cards somewhere if I decided to use them. I also really like the look of 'Shinato, King of a Higher Plane'. 'Relinquished' might be fun to work in to the deck as well, along with maybe a couple of Berserk Dragon cards.  

Another thought I had was to use the Blue Eyes White Dragon Card with Advanced Ritual Art and Birthright, as my flatmate has 3x BEWD cards.

Let me know if this is enough to help you build a potential deck!

Thanks again,
'Jambo Mac'

Answer
A Mixed Gishki and DARK Ritual Deck isn't going to work very well, simply because all of the Gishki Stuff only supports Gishki Rituals, which leaves all your DARK Ritual monsters high and dry...
Gishki Ritual Decks can only contain Gishki unfortunately.
Let me know if you'd like to have a look at that anyway...

Let me show you something interesting instead. The BLue-Eyes Idea reminds me of a deck from back in the days of Demise OTK.
We'll focus on Black Luster Soldier since you're not a fan of Demise, but with 1 Demise as Backup (You could play Shinato instead if you wanted, or Dark Master Zorc...):

3 Blue-Eyes White Dragon
3 Black Luster Soldier
1 Demise the King of Armageddon
3 Manju of the Ten Thousand Hands
2 Senju of the Thousand Hands
1 Sonic Bird
3 King of the Swamp
(16)

3 Trade-In
2 Advanced Ritual Art
1 Black Luster Ritual
3 Dragon's Mirror
2 Mystical Space Typhoon
1 Heavy Storm
1 Monster Reborn
1 Dark Hole
1 Swing of Memories
1 Polymerisation
(16)

2 Trap Stun
2 Torrential Tribute
2 Bottomless Trap Hole
1 Solemn Warning
1 Solemn Judgment
(8)

This deck runs on the Principle that King of the Swamp can be used as a Fusion Substitute, and thus "King of the Swamp" + "Black Luster Soldier" = "Dragon Master Knight", with King subbing in as Blue-Eyes Ultimate Dragon.
So this deck can hit your opponent with Large Ritual monsters, but then has Dragon Master Knight and Blue-Eyes Ultimate Dragon to fall back on Via Dragon's Mirror once you run out of Rituals.

Swing of Memories and Trade-In make sure you get the most out of those Large Dragons should you ever draw into them, and can also discard useless Ritual monsters to get to more useful cards in the late game.

The Rest of the deck is basic support, with Manju and Senju making sure that the right Ritual cards find their way to your hand.

Give that a go, see what you think.

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Exo

Expertise

I'm able to answer any and all questions related to the English Yu-Gi-Oh! game itself. This includes, but isn't limited to:

Deck Fixes: Either making suggestions and improvements on a deck you've already built, or building a deck from scratch for you. In either case, please give an idea of the kind of deck you're building, the level of play you're planning to use it in (small tournaments, regionals etc), and the kind of budget you're on.
Please format decks in a way that's easy to read. Each card name should be on its own line, with a number before it indicating how many you're playing. Please split decks into Monsters, Spells and Traps.

NOTE: A level of reasonability is assumed with this. I cannot build you a nationals winning deck based on monsters whose name starts with the Letter 'A' on a budget of 4($6)... Nor will I generally respond well to Questions touting "No Xyz, Synchro... etc" or disallowing cards from certain parts of the show. I haven't seen the show in a number of years and find these conditions to usually be poorly-defined.

Rulings: On any card interacting with any other card(s). Tell me the scenario, and I'll tell you what happens.

I won't be answering questions on whether a trade is fair or not, or on how much X-card is worth, as both these kinds of question can be answered by using Ebay's completed listings page.

Experience

Level 2 Judge Qualification,
Level 1 Player Management Qualification,
Konami Rules Certification 1,
Regularly Head Judges Local Events,
Tournament Wins/Top 8 placements too numerous to detail here

Education/Credentials
BSc (Hons) Degree in Mathematics

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