Saturday, May 1, 2010

TSHD Sneak Preview Part 6: X^2=X

It is not implied at all that I have a grudge against calculus and algebra >_>

XX-Sabers first appeared in Ancient Prophecy as additional support for the then extinct X-Saber monsters, which had vanished from the Duel Terminals at an early time. Unexpectedly, they grew in number extremely fast, probably to once again honor their name of XX (twenty). With the upcoming set of The Shining Darkness, the monsters equal this number already, but so far, we are stuck with eight XX-Saber monsters.

Much like the title of this article says, a very important rule to keep in mind is that XX-Saber monsters include the word "X-Saber" in their name, so all the support Cards released so far will work with both, X-Saber, and XX-Saber monsters (and some even work with "Saber" monsters too, like we saw in the previous article).

The first monster in the Ancient Prophecy set we'll look at is XX-Saber Ragigura:

When this card is Normal Summoned or Special Summoned, you can add 1 "X-Saber" monster from your Graveyard  to your hand.

A very simple optional Trigger Effect. This effect targets one X-Saber monster. You can target a X-Saber Synchro Monster, and it will return to the Extra Deck. Depending on which way you Summon Ragigura, Pulling the Rug or Swallow Flip may or may not be used on this effect.

Next, we have XX-Saber Faultroll:

This card cannot be Normal Summoned or Set. This card cannot be Special Summoned except while you control 2 or more face-up  "X-Saber" monsters. Once per turn, you can Special Summon 1 level 4 or lower "X-Saber" monster from your Graveyard.

Faultroll has a Summoning Condition, and an Ignition Effect. The Ignition Effect is pretty simple, it targets one X-Saber monster in your Graveyard, and that's about it. Its inherent Special Summon is the problem here. Many believe that Faultroll can be Special Summoned at any time by Card Effects as long as you control 2 or more X-Sabers, or even that you can use the inherent Special Summon to do so. These are both false. Faultroll cannot be Special Summoned (as its text says), except by its inherent Special Summon. Since no location is mentioned, the default location is from the Hand. We already reviewed this in a previous article, too.

Originally, the last XX-Saber monster in the set would be XX-Saber Gottoms, but eventually, TCG exclusives would be added. Let's take a look at the commander's reincarnation as a Synchro Monster:

1 Tuner + 1 or more EARTH monsters
You can Tribute 1 "X-Saber" monster to discard 1 random card from your opponent's hand.

Almost everyone notices how Gottoms is not restricted to Non-Tuner monsters. This is not a typo: Gottoms CAN be Synchro Summoned using more than one Tuner monsters (you can even use all Tuners if you like). Of course, note that 1 Tuner is not restricted to anything, but any other monster that you use (Tuner or not) must be of EARTH Attribute.

As for the actual effect, Gottoms is not too complicated. It's an Ignition Effect, which tributes 1 X-Saber monster as a cost. You can tribute face-down X-Sabers, or even Gottoms itself. There's a very popular loop with Gottoms, which involves using its cost to tribute Ragigura and Faultroll, then use a second Faultroll to Summon Ragigura and retrieve the first Faultroll, repeatedly. The loop itself is legal, but do remember that you cannot activate Gottom's effect (or pay its cost) if the opponent has no Cards in Hand. So, for example, if you tribute Faultroll first, and the opponent chains an effect to reduce his/her Hand size to zero, you won't be able to tribute Ragigura, and the loop gets stuck.

After the commander, we'll look at the TCG exclusives, the first being XX-Saber Gardestrike:

If you have 2 or more "X-Saber" monsters in your Graveyard  and you control no monsters, you can Special Summon this card from your hand.

A very simple monster. It only has a Summoning Condition, being an inherent Special Summon. It can still be Normal Summoned or Set. Not much to say, really. It's as plain as Cyber Dragon.

The other exclusive is XX-Saber Fulhelmknight:

Once, while this card is face-up on the field, you can negate  the attack  of 1 of your opponent's monsters. If this card destroys  a Defense Position monster your opponent controls  by battle, you can Special Summon 1 Level 4 or lower "X-Saber" monster from your Graveyard.

Fulhelmknight has two Optional Trigger Effects. The first effect is activated upon attack declaration, and it targets the attacking monster. This effect can only be used once as long as Fulhelmknight remains face-up on the Field. Fulhelmknight needs to be face-up both at the activation of this effect (at attack declaration) and during its resolution. The second effect is activated at the End of the Damage Step, and it targets 1 X-Saber monster. This effect will activate if Fulhelmknight battles a monster with the same ATK, or in any other case that causes Fulhelmknight not to be face-up at the End of the Damage Step. If it destroyed a monster, you can activate it.

In the recent set of Absolute Powerforce, two XX-Sabers were originally included, and one was added afterwards. The first original one was XX-Saber Garsem:

When this card on the field is destroyed  and sent to the Graveyard by a card effect, add 1 "X-Saber" monster from your Deck to your hand. This card gains 200 ATK  for each face-up "X-Saber" monster you control.

Garsem's first effect is a mandatory Trigger Effect, and the second one is a Continuous Effect. The first effect, being mandatory, cannot miss the timing, and it will always activate, even during the Damage Step. It will even activate if your own effects destroy Garsem. The second effect isn't too complicated. A common question is whether you can use Bottomless Trap Hole on Garsem or not. The answer is yes: As soon as Garsem is Summoned, its Continuous Effect starts applying, and so, its ATK is 1600 (or higher), so a player can activate Bottomless Trap Hole.

The other original XX-Saber here is XX-Saber Hyunlei:

1 Tuner + 1 or more non-Tuner "X-Saber" monsters.
When this card is Synchro Summoned, you can select and destroy up to 3 Spell or Trap Cards on the field.

Hyunlei only has an optional Trigger Effect. It targets up to three Cards, and if you choose to activate it, you must target at least 1. Swallow Flip can be used against this effect.

The last XX-Saber to date is XX-Saber Emmersable:

When this card is destroyed by battle and sent to the Graveyard, you can Special Summon 1 Level 4 or lower "X-Saber" monster  from your Deck.

Your average recruiter. Optional Trigger Effect, activated at the End of the Damage Step. Nothing too surprising, rulings-wise.

And that's all for XX-Sabers so far. Stay tuned for the final part of the preview of The Shining Darkness! If you have any questions, feel free to drop me an e-mail at ness00[at]gmail[dot]com.

1 comment: