Jesse Twohig traveled from Nebraska for this Shonen Jump Championship, but he had me completely thrown off when he laid a Comic Odyssey playmat on his side of the field.
“I’m not on Comic Odyssey. I just really want to be on the team,” he said with a smile.
He played against Chris Marck, a new name to the Shonen Jump Championship scene, in a battle of the unknowns.
Before the match began, Jesse told me how many Tsukuyomis he had in his deck. He was running two copies of the greatest Spirit monster ever, while Chris admitted to only running one Tsukuyomi. “I just tend to draw both Tsukuyomis when I play two of them, and they’re pretty annoying when they are your only monsters.” It’s a good point, but it still made this writer sad. You can never have too many Tsukuyomis!
Chris Marck won the roll and opted to go first. He opened with Graceful Charity, discarding Sinister Serpent and Airknight Parshath. Not a bad start at all, right? He set a monster and a card and ended his turn. Jesse opened a little more straightforwardly with D. D. Assailant, which attacked and destroyed Chris’s facedown Blade Knight. Chris took the offensive during his next turn with Kycoo the Ghost Destroyer and a Premature Burial for Airknight Parshath. While Kycoo destroyed and was removed by D. D. Assailant, Parshath was switched to defense position by Jesse’s Enemy Controller. Jesse then took control of Airknight with Snatch Steal during his turn, which got him some field advantage.
Chris ended up setting only one facedown spell or trap before ending his next turn. Jesse, concerned that the card was most likely a form of removal, played Heavy Storm to go for the safe destruction. Chris chained with Ceasefire for 500 damage before the field was wiped out, including the Airknight Parshath, since it was equipped with Premature Burial.
Jesse set Magician of Faith, but it was removed from play thanks to Chris’s Nobleman of Crossout during his next turn. While Chris got in an attack with a spell-counter charged Breaker the Magical Warrior, Jesse made quick work of it with Berserk Gorilla. When Jesse gained the upper hand again with Tribe-Infecting Virus, Chris tried to go for Metamorphosis by offering Sinister Serpent to summon Thousand-Eyes Restrict. Even though Thousand-Eyes Restrict was successfully summoned, Jesse chained to the triggering of the Fusion monster’s ATK effect with Ring of Destruction.
He punched through with some more damage next turn with Tribe-Infecting Virus, but Chris found salvation in a drawn Black Luster Soldier – Envoy of the Beginning. He used Envoy to attack Jesse’s Virus, and then the big Warrior went for direct damage, reducing Jesse’s life points by 4400 that turn. Jesse had an Envoy of his own in hand as well. However, he lacked the Light monsters to remove that would summon the big Warrior. He tried to get by with a set Sinister Serpent and Call of the Haunted during his turn, but Chris played Giant Trunade to remove Call of the Haunted from the field. Envoy attacked into Jesse’s Serpent and then swung again directly for the win.
Chris Marck wins game 1.
Both players made a few uses of their side decks and then entered game 2. Jesse went first and hoped for a part of the “unholy trinity” (Pot of Greed, Graceful Charity, or Delinquent Duo). Unfortunately, he saw none of these cards. He set a spell or trap card and ended his turn. Chris opened with a set monster and a spell or trap card. Jesse played Nobleman of Crossout on Chris’s facedown D. D. Assailant, and then he summoned an Assailant of his own. The new D. D. Assailant was met with Chris’s Torrential Tribute, continuing the trend of Assailant-hatred.
Chris tried to use Blade Knight to attack directly, but Jesse flipped up Scapegoat in order to prevent any damage. During Jesse’s turn, he tributed a sheep token to Enemy Controller in order to gain control of Blade Knight, which was tributed to summon Airknight Parshath. Chris set a monster and unknown card for his next turn. Jesse quickly attacked the facedown monster with Airknight Parshath, and Chris revealed the monster to be Morphing Jar. Upon drawing his five new cards and one additional card for Airknight Parshath’s ability, Jesse smiled. “Finally, I found a few power cards,” he said as he played Delinquent Duo and Graceful Charity back-to-back during main phase 2 of his turn.
Jesse was knocked back a bit when Chris played Call of the Haunted to special summon Jinzo in response to Heavy Storm. Jesse tried to respond to Jinzo’s summoning with Book of Moon, but the monster hadn’t been summoned to the field before the chain started to resolve, so there weren’t any valid targets that Jesse wished to flip face down. Jesse did find a way to remove Jinzo from the field, and then he swung with Airknight once again, netting him another card from the top of his deck. Chris, however, recovered by using Black Luster Soldier – Envoy of the Beginning.
Chris began to use his Envoy as a form of removal each turn, getting rid of one of Jesse’s Magician of Faith monsters. Jesse, however, bounced back with Metamorphosis on a sheep token to summon Thousand-Eyes Restrict, which absorbed the Envoy. Chris saved himself with Scapegoat that turn, as the attack from Jesse’s Fusion monster would have ended the duel. During his turn, Chris used a Metamorphosis of his own to summon a new Thousand-Eyes Restrict, which absorbed Jesse’s copy of the level 1 Fusion monster. Jesse played Lightning Vortex to wipe Chris’s field clean during his turn, and Chris was unable to recover. Within one more turn, Jesse swung at Chris directly with Enraged Battle Ox and Kycoo the Ghost Destroyer. Chris scooped up his cards and got ready for the final game.
Jesse Twohig wins game 2.
During Chris’s side decking, Jesse and Chris talked about their side decks. Chris mentioned how useful burn cards are in the side deck for those pinch situations where only a few minutes are left in a round.
Chris opened game 3 by setting a monster and one spell or trap. Jesse opened aggressively with Berserk Gorilla, which ran into Chris’s D. D. Warrior Lady. Both monsters were removed from play. Chris summoned and swung directly with Blade Knight for 1600, while Jesse only set another spell or trap card during his next turn.
Things became worse for Jesse when Chris tributed Blade Knight for Jinzo, causing Jesse to take another 2400 damage to the head. Jesse was forced to play Lightning Vortex on a single Jinzo, discarding Premature Burial. He set Magician of Faith and ended his turn. Chris, who had three facedown cards, spent his time deliberating on a play. He opted to summon Tribe-Infecting Virus in order to attack the facedown Magician of Faith, but Jesse used Mirror Force. Jesse chose not to flip summon his Magician, and he ended his turn. During the end phase, Chris played Call of the Haunted on Jinzo in order to stop any threatening traps. He summoned Kinetic Soldier and then special summoned Black Luster Soldier - Envoy of the Beginning in order to go for the match win. He chose not to use priority, and in what appeared to be a bizarre play, Chris swung with Kinetic Soldier instead of with his big guy into Jesse’s facedown monster. Jesse chained with Enemy Controller, tributing Magician of Faith to target Envoy of the Beginning, but Chris chained with Book of Moon on the big monster to keep it on his field. Chris went directly at Jesse’s life points with Kinetic Soldier and Jinzo.
“Heart of the cards!” said Jesse, as he hoped to draw a card that would bail him out of his bad situation. “What? Screw you, Yugi Moto!” Jesse laughed. He had topdecked Envoy of the Beginning without a Dark monster to remove from his graveyard. He admitted to his drawn card and conceded the game, as he had no other monsters to summon.
Chris Marck moves on to the semifinals!