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C.A.G.E.'s playstyle guide part 3: Controlled Frenzy (swarm)

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PostSubject: C.A.G.E.'s playstyle guide part 3: Controlled Frenzy (swarm) Mon Sep 01, 2014 11:06 pm#1

Playstyle guide part 3. Controlled Frenzy Decks
What exactly are Controlled Frenzy Decks?

Since the introduction of Six Samurai, the metagame has long been controlled by the swarm play style. The goal: oppressive field presence. Ideally, you want to put as much pressure out on the board right away as possible and either go for a one turn kill, or use that presence to stop your opponent from gaining any field presence. There's a smart and a dumb way to do this. Controlled Frenzy is the process of committing the minimal amount of resources to the board necessary to control the field, and having backup to press further advantage. Combo that with loops that replenish your hand control, and you can easily overwhelm the opponent. 

Backrow Selection

For the most part, your main deck will consist of draw power and cards to disrupt other frenzy decks, with some cheap removal sprinkled in. The monsters you're summoning are meant to deal with the opposing threat, so you are left to deal with backrow that may inhibit your plans. Cards like mystical space typhoon, raigeki break, phoenix wing wind blast (as most frenzy decks rely heavily on the graveyard to continue swarming) will help you clear the field so you can take over during your turn. Very little attention, if any, needs to be paid to your opponent's monsters, as you can use monster effects to handle them later. For decks that CAN, running skill drain will often completely mitigate that risk.

The Extra Deck

In swarm decks, rank 3,4,7, and sometimes 5 xyz plays are common. The idea is to vary your options for dealing with threats. Synchros are also used in some cases, but not seen in abundance any more. The synchros at or above 2800 attack tend to be favored due to their durability. 

Siding in The Stun

Side decking will consist of hand traps and stun cards. A swarm deck usually has an abnormally high monster count, so dropping a few monsters that are in multiples of 3 to 2 can often help fit in the stun. Side out your draw power sparingly, it will cost you if you do so too heavily. Your goal is to disrupt the opponent's engine proactively instead of just powering over them, making your job so much easier. 


Controlled frenzy suffers from two glaring weaknesses: rapid depletion of hand advantage, and reliance on graveyard control. They need very much to be able to control what is in their grave at all times to set up recursion and any card that prevents them from using their grave or special summoning will hurt their playability. Fortunately, most of the cards that effectively do this are spells or traps, and can be easily dealt with. The problem exists if you're unable to control monster effects as well. This is where skill drain comes in handy. Along with side-decking, a swarm player will often change their playstyle in games 2 and 3 to that of a fighting deck, and attempt to grind out the opponent. Then, once you've eaten the opponent's resources, use your remaining card advantage to pay for a (hopefully) quick win.

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-Sig Credit to JFKay. Awesome work!

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C.A.G.E.'s playstyle guide part 3: Controlled Frenzy (swarm)

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