Written by Arcadia
Mordred Phantom Reawakens!
After years away from the game, Revengers have finally returned! At the frontline is the original cover card, Illusionary Revenger, Mordred Phantom. A familiar face to many older players, where its previous iteration has been a cornerstone in many Revenger decks in the clan's competitive history. Of course, alongside him, many iconic units have made a comeback.
Illusionary Revenger, Mordred Phantom
The Leader of the Revengers is here once again. Much like Gancelot, Illusionary Revenger, Mordred Phantom directly works off of having copies of their respective Blaster in play. Mordred Phantom is able to generate additional Force Markers whenever a Blaster Dark is placed on your rearguard circle. This skill is not 1/Turn, allowing you to quickly build up power in your formation if Force 1 is chosen, giving you a significant advantage while going first and allowing you to quickly start pushing damage. Power was certainly something Shadow Paladin had trouble with when VBT04 had released, and this unit puts the clan in the right direction. These Force markers can be spread across the board for balanced attacks, or stacked onto one circle to focus the pressure all on a specific units to set up for winning plays. Truly a powerful skill.
Also, when your opponent is on a G3 Vanguard or higher Mordred's secondary skill can activate, which stands all Blaster Dark units and gives them +10000 once he's finished declaring an attack. This can possibly net you 4 or more attacks per turn for a simple cost for counterblast 1 on your first ride when going second, something which is otherwise rare for Force Decks to do. Combined with the Force Marker spam which Mordred is already made for, your Blaster Dark units will be hitting from a wide range from 30-50k on average.
A strong first ride target
Can potentially be sufficient to end games in combination with marker generation and multiple attacks
Relies heavily on Blaster Dark
Does not have a very active ability when going first where your opponent is more likely to take damage.
Of course that also brings you to the other end of things. As strong as Mordred can be, he is dependent on how consistently you can bring out Blaster Dark. For once you run out of them, you will no longer be able to use Mordred's skill. Of course, this problem has been addressed with two fellow Revengers included in this set as well. They are of course the Masquerades.
Nullity Revenger, Masquerade is the seconds Shadow Paladin VR in this set. While not a boss unit like many VRs, its utility is almost on par with Top Star, Cier. On place V/R, it searches the top 7 for either Mordred or Blaster Dark. Both, needless to say, are key cards.
Then, if you do manage to pick up a target, you will have to retire a rearguard. It's a very low risk search card, unlike something like Dragon Full Armored Buster. Masquerade does not have a real cost attached to it, meaning, if you do whiff it, you will not have to retire your own rearguard and it does not affect any of your resource. Also note that if you do ride it and control no rearguards, it effectively becomes a free search.
It also gains 3000 when attacking a Vanguard, making it a flexible attacker if need be as Shadow Paladin tends not to have strong boosters due to prioritizing cards like Skull Witch, Nemain and Black Winged Swordbreaker in their G1 slots.
Transient Revenger, Masquerade is a powerful G1 that allows you to re-call Blaster Dark from the Drop Zone for the cost of counterblast one and putting itself to soul, allowing you to consistently retrieve Blaster Dark from the Drop Zone in later stages of the game. BD also gains 5000 for the turn, allowing you to reach better stages of attacks during your Mordred turns and maximize damage. This skill is an ACT as well, giving it some flexibility in its use. On top of that, much like his G2 counterpart, he too has a simple skill to gain 3000 when boosting, making it an ideal booster in any stage of the game. This maes 24000 lines when boosting a 13000.
Adds consistency to the deck
Gain their own power when boosting
Dorint and Claudas
The pair of knights have returned as well. Barrier Troop Revenger, Dorint is able to gain 10000 power on place, and will draw a card when Frontline Revenger, Claudas is around. Claudas then can shove himself to soul, draw a card and will CC if Dorint is around. Simple effects, but can be rather useful at times. They allow for a quick rush with the power/advantage and quickly draw into your deck when your ideal cards are nowhere to be seen. Dorint too has an additional utility of being a strong attacker late into the game. There are downsides however, as individually they are quite cost intensive and are only cost effective when both of them are together.
Compared to more traditional Macha/Charon route, they offer higher reward but come with the risk of being brick-y. So, do weigh those options and keep and eye out for them.
Forms strong columns
Able to help push and draw into more pieces when your main game plan is not online
The timing of Claudas and Dorint Skills can be hard to fully utilize as Shadows are still very counterblast heavy
Aren't as valuable individually and can be clunky later into the game.
Shadows gets a Waterfall?
Last, but certainly not least, is Danger-lunge Dragon. While not a Revenger, its skills fit in very nicely within the V BT06 Shadow Paladin units. For a SB1, it is able to retrieve any G2 unit from your Drop Zone. For examples within this set, Dorint can be retrieved and reused, Masquerade can be placed again to get another search, and of course, retrieving Blaster Dark for Mordred turns. However this isn't its main skill.
On V/R , if you control at least 3 Force Markers, it is able to gain 10000 power, a critical, and sentinel restrict for the low cost of soul blast one G3 unit! Basically, it is almost a clone of the once feared Dragonic Waterfall! Combined with Mordred Phantom's Force generation, this condition can be easily met and depending on your Force placement, you can set up for an almost unguardable attack. Being able to activate on rearguard cricle also means that you will still be able to pull it off while you have Mordred and Blaster Dark in the other circles, making for some very ferocious turns. Being a SB cost makes it very welcoming in the clan with little to none, giving the deck options if your opponent does try to damage deny you.
This also indirectly answers some of the common fears you may have about winning solely with Mordred, due having 2 win conditions that can play into each other. What if we don't see any Blaster Darks? What about Narukami and Link Joker? The deck does not have any way to retrieve bound units after all. Keep an eye on Danger-lunge, while it does require you to control 3 Force markers, it is relatively generic, meaning it could be splashed in future Standard Shadow Paladin decks to come even as a two or three of.
Retrieves any G2 on ride brings strong utility
Strong finisher that can be used either on VG/ RG
Adds additional win condition to your otherwise linear strategy
Not a strong first ride even compared to cards like Phantom Blaster Dragon whose retire skill can skill control boards
Slow outside of Mordred
So what do these new additions do for the clan?
Mordred Phantom is the forefront of a new deck type within the clan that revolves around securing quick and decisive wins with the speed at which it is able to pressure opponents, thanks to its many Force markers. Unlike the previous iterations of Standard Shadow Paladins, which had used Phantom Blaster Dragon and Gust Blaster (which had some control aspects to them), Mordred aims to finish the game within a few turns by using the Blaster Darks for multi-attacks or even Danger-lunge Dragon for a beefy guard restrict. Both make use of the abusable nature of spam-able Force Markers. Mastering the placement of your Force markers is something you will definitely have to keep in mind and make second nature when using a Mordred focused deck.
So how will Shadow Paladin impact the game with all the tools it has gathered? In my opinion, it is looking good. Combined with their already strong early game engine, they are looking to be possible contenders for a top spot in the post VBT06 meta-game for sure.
So far over in the Japanese side of the game, they have already had a good representation in a recent VMC Qualifier event, where it made up 21% of the decks used at the tournament and was even piloted by the winner.
So let's continue to observe the dark knights. Will Revengers be able to reclaim its legacy as a top deck? Well, regardless it will certainly be something to be hyped for.
Follow us on our social media, and join our community Discord!