First Impressions: Father Knows Best

Hey everyone!

So once again we have been presented with a new MP and Named Cards, and while I wasn’t planning to do one of these for every MP that’s been revealed, it seems that people are interested in what I have to say, so I’ve decided I’ll be making a series out of these for Legends.

We’ve already reviewed Kami, so look forward to seeing my “First Impressions” on Chilled when he is revealed, as well as a combined article on all single level MPs that are revealed, and then finally a combined article on any single Named Cards that are revealed.

Phew. Alright with all that housekeeping out of the way, let’s take a more in-depth look at what our “low-level warrior-class turned Legendary Saiyan” has to offer us! As with the Kami article, today we will be taking a look at all of Bardock’s Levels individually, as well as his Named Cards, and then my first attempt at a Deck List which hopes to capitalize on the full package.

So let’s dive in!

Level 1

Bardock, True Saiyan is our first level. His power level starts off as many low-level Saiyan Villains do, sitting in B Bracket for nearly all of his level before dropping to A for his last stage. This on top of his standard 2 PUR is certainly nothing to write home about; so the meat of the card must be found inside his text box.

Bardock has a Constant power which allows you to raise your anger 1 level whenever a player searches your opponent’s Life Deck. Bardock also has a rather interesting Power to play along with this constant effect. When used, you destroy the top card of your Life Deck, then your opponent reveals their hand, and finally, you search their deck for any card and destroy it.

So right away we see that effects that search your opponent’s deck and gain advantage from knowledge of their cards are going to be key to piloting Bardock. As well, taking advantage of search effects by gaining anger off of them is a rather interesting bonus. At base level this means that once per combat you’ll be destroying a card from your deck (typically unknown and random since it is your top card) and a card from your opponent’s deck (of your choice thanks to the search) to reveal their hand and gain an anger. Certainly nothing to sneeze at, and when coupled with other search effects, “Name a card” effects, or cards that care about destroying cards from a player’s deck, this could definitely be the start of something nasty.

Level 2

Bardock, Vengeful is our next level in the stack. This time around Bardock sits in C Bracket for 8 stages before finally dipping back into B for his last 2 stages. He also has a pretty standard PUR of 3.

We are given a much more impressive Constant power this time around, part of which will remain with us for the rest of his stack! First, our opponent plays with their hand revealed. Next, whenever an effect destroys cards from our opponent’s Life Deck, we may raise our anger 1 level.

Finally, we have the Power to destroy the top card of our Life Deck to banish the bottom card of our opponent’s discard pile. We then may choose to discard a card, and if we do, our opponent must do the same.

Even disregarding the fact that we get the ability to benefit from destroying cards from our opponent’s deck, the fact that we now have perfect information on our opponent’s hand for the rest of the game is just incredible. Not only that, we also have some control over the flow of combat thanks to the ability to banish the bottom card of our opponent’s discard pile and make them discard a card from their hand. While they will get to choose the card themselves and it does come at the cost of having to destroy the top card of our deck and discarding a card from our own hand, the fact that they have to guess blindly at what is worth discarding while we have complete knowledge of both our and our opponent’s hand before choosing to discard is a Control Player’s dream scenario.

This level, and really this whole MP, will definitely become the stuff of Legend in the Set 9 meta.

Level 3

Bardock’s Level 3 is Bardock, Displaced. Bardock starts off with 2 stages of B, before spending the majority of this level in the C Bracket. His final stage caps off nicely in D Bracket; no small feat for someone of his low-level status. Bardock is also accompanied by a PUR of 4 on this level.

Like Level 2, Bardock has the constant power of forcing your opponent to play with their hand revealed. As well, Bardock as the ability to search your opponent’s Life Deck for up to 3 Styled cards and destroy them. Next you get to reveal the top 4 cards of your Life Deck and place them back in any order. And finally, your opponent must skip their next action this combat.

While not as wordy as his Level 2, Bardock’s Level 3 has an insane amount of power behind it. Removing options for your opponent to draw while setting up the top 4 cards of your deck exactly how you want them is absolutely crazy. And on top of all that, you also get to capitalize on the information that you just received about the top of your deck by making your opponent skip their next action. This can set up lots of positive situations, from knowing what you are going to draw with a draw effect, to knowing what you are going to destroy from your own destroy effect, to setting up Endurance, or even prepping for a “Name the top card” type of effect.

And again, you are also getting 3 free “damage” of your choice in at your opponent through all of this. Very, very powerful.

Level 4

Bardock’s final level is Bardock, Legend. Bardock’s power levels really kick it into overdrive on this level; having 3 stages of C, 3 stages of D, and 4 stages of E Bracket. Not to mention he also goes to a PUR of 5.

Again, Bardock has the constant power of revealing your opponent’s hand. This time however it is accompanied by the fact that your opponent must discard their hand at the end of each turn. Bardock also has the Power to gain 4 stages, destroy the top 3 cards of either player’s Life Deck, and place the first Styled Setup destroyed this way directly into play under your control.

Ever felt like you just couldn’t win while your opponent had a Black Smoothness Drill in play? Well not while Level 4 Bardock is around! Your opponent can have all the maximum hand size they want, cause at the end of the day, they are discarding it all! Again Bardock has the ability to sneak 3 “damage” in on your opponent while still gaining a few other impressive abilities.

The interesting thing about this Level’s power is that if you are able to set it up, say from your Black Absorption Drill you just so happen to have in play, you can get back a Styled Setup from your or your opponent’s discard pile, place it on top of its owner’s Life Deck, then activate Bardock’s Level 4 power and place it immediately into play under your control. Certainly an MP to consider when looking at a Setup heavy deck strategy.

Named Card #1

Bardock’s  first Named Card is Bardock’s Premonition. This event comes with one Endurance and has quite the unique effect. You reveal the top 4 cards of your Life Deck to your opponent. They then must make two piles of cards (in any combination). You get to choose one pile to place into your hand, while the other is placed on top of your Life Deck in any order. Finally, you destroy the top 2 cards of your Life Deck. This event is also Banish After Use.

So those of you familiar with Magic: the Gathering will probably recognize this card as a slightly altered Fact or Fiction. For those of you not aware, the main point of this card is that it at the very least replaces itself with the best card out of the top 4 of your deck while allowing you to thin your Deck to more relevant cards by destroying the top 2 after placing the remaining cards back in the order of your chosing.

At best this card will likely be 2 cards in hand and 2 cards destroyed, though typically a savvy opponent will place the best card in its own pile with the other 3 remaining in the second. Unless you are looking for raw actions over quality of card, you will usually take whichever pile has the card you are looking for.

Another thing to note about this card however, is that the cards are placed back on top and then destroyed instead of just being discarded like Magic’s FoF. What this means is that card effects that care about cards being destroyed from your deck will trigger off this card. Likewise, this card becomes incredibly spicy when you take cards like Black Double Team and the like into consideration. If you are able to connect the dots, you see that in the right deck this card is generating a lot more than 1-2 cards in your hand if done correctly!

Named Card #2

Bardock’s other Named Card is Bardock’s Spirit JavelinWhile this card is generating a lot of heated discussion on Retro at the moment, be aware that this card’s wording or an FAQ about what “exactly” it can do may come out before the final release of the set.

At Limit 2 per deck, this energy attack is certainly something to behold. Costing 2 stages and dealing 5 Life cards, this attack has the unique ability to search your opponent’s Life Deck for any non-Named attack, destroy it, and use the immediate effect of that attack, before Banishing itself after use.

Again, this card is currently going through a bit of a rule’s quagmire as to what it can and cannot interact with immediate effect wise, but even if we aren’t trying to do anything too fancy with it, having the ability to destroy a Blue Head Knock to set our opponent’s anger to 0, or destroy a Red Left Bolt to draw the bottom card of our Life Deck is a pretty neat addition to any Bardock build, with only room to grow upon the final ruling of the card!

Initial Deck Concept

MP Levels and Mastery:
1 – Bardock, True Saiyan
2 – Bardock, Vengeful
3 – Bardock, Displaced
4 – Bardock, Legend
M – Orange Adaptive Mastery

Blocks (13):
3x Orange Energy Catch
2x Orange Dismissal
3x Orange Refocus
2x Orange Defense
2x Orange Juke
1x Time is a Warrior’s Tool

Setups (2):
2x Visiting the Past

Drills (15):
3x Orange Devouring Drill
2x Orange Checkup Drill
1x Orange Energy Dan Drill
1x Orange Aura Drill
1x Orange Steady Drill
1x Orange Burning Aura Drill
1x Orange Hiding Drill
1x Orange Torching Drill
1x Orange Guardian Drill
1x Orange Possessiong Drill
1x Orange Captivity Drill
1x Lookout Drill

Events (7):
2x Orange Destruction
3x Bardock’s Premonition
2x Villainous Energy Sphere

Energy Attacks (20):
3x Orange Sweeping Blast
3x Orange Fierce Attack
3x Orange Combined Burst
3x Orange Precise Shot
3x Orange Power Point
3x Assisted Kamehameha
2x Bardock’s Spirit Javelin

Physical Attacks (3):
3x Orange Sword Chop

Deck Concept and Goals

While a lot of people have been talking about the insane value of Bardock in Black or the potential for a Saiyan Control deck, I wanted to take a slightly different approach to his stack.

This deck looks to take advantage of the fact that we can hedge our bets with our own self-mill effects thanks to Adaptive’s trigger at the end of combat to place a Drill from our discard pile into play as long as we dealt critical damage that combat. On top of that, Orange has some great destroying effects as well as a tiny bit of search thanks to Orange Precise Shot and Orange Energy Dan Drill to really get use out of our Level 1 and 2.

A great tool that we have for this deck is Orange Sword Chop. Being able to get Bardock’s Premonition in the early game to get aggressive or Orange Destruction to close out the game is definitely an exciting tool to have at our disposal.

Again, the deck is trying to fill itself with multi-purpose lines of play. While many of our attacks can end up hitting for a decent chunk of damage, thanks to the Mastery and Aura Drill, we also are trying to find ways to sneak “chip damage” in, to push our MP’s destruction effects to the late game early. Thanks to Orange Devouring Drill, we should hopefully be able to hop up our stack quick and start putting the pressure on as early as possible, while seeing everything our opponent has to offer in the process.

Depending on how the meta shapes up or how this deck performs, there are certainly some other cards to consider. Orange Bicycle Kick was initially in this build, but since I’m unsure just how many Drills you can really stack up in play at a time to try and push for a big Orange Torching Drill combo, I’ve decided to leave it out for now. If testing proves that Bardock milling us into our own drills really does pay off however, expect that card to make an appearance here. Likewise, because a lot of people will be excited to play Kami and Bardock right out of the gate, I’ve decided that playing a Lookout Drill feels appropriate. If the meta proves to be a lot of the same old thing (which I really doubt), then we might look to turn that into something spicier.

Aside from all this, the deck is your typical Orange Energy Beat down list.

This is for all the people that we’ve killed in your name!

And that wraps up our first look at Bardock!

Thanks again to those who reached out and said they’d like to hear my opinions on him and the other MPs. Like I said earlier, you can expect to see a few other articles in this series as more of the set is revealed.

Don’t forget to vote on our current TC101 poll from this past Tuesday’s article. Next week’s list will be the last we do of the set 8 meta, so if you’ve had any curious notions about any the 6 lists presented on the poll, now is your time to see one in all its glory.

Until next time, FanZ Warriors!

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About DArtagnanMF

Your Friendly Neighborhood Kreitzman
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