Matt Highline was undefeated here today with Synchro Zombies, and was dedicating his play here today to his 10 month-old daughter, Sakura. That’s her hat he was wearing, and I’m sure it probably looks better on an infant.
David Bustillos made Day 2 at Shonen Jump Championship Hawaii, and you may remember him from his feature match against Jerry Wang a couple years ago. Like many, he came to the feature match table equipped with a list of shout-outs: “I want to thank Da-Planet, and Ideal808, and uhh . . . Teddy. He’s said he always wanted his name in a feature match!” There you go, Teddy.
Highline won the roll and opened the match with two Mezuki, two Card of Safe Return, Mirror Force, and Emergency Teleport! It was a hand with serious potential. “I’m going to set, and set, and say go.” He’d set Mezuki and Mirror Force. Bustillos set one monster and play was back to Highline.
He drew Allure of Darkness. He summoned Mezuki, flip summoned his other copy, and attacked into Spirit Reaper. He moved to main phase 2, activated Teleport, and special summoned Krebons! Goyo Guardian hit the field! “I pass. Go.” That was one Mezuki in the graveyard. Highline just needed to get some Zombies loaded so he could go off with those Card of Safe Returns.
Bustillos spent some time reading Mezuki and debating his moves. “I’ll play it patient; I’m gonna say go, and hope I don’t lose.” Highline drew D.D. Crow, activated Allure, and drew Malicious and Solemn Judgment. He tributed Mezuki for Malicious, then removed one Mezuki to special summon his other — Mezuki hit the field and Highline drew another Solemn and Allure! He set both Solemns and ended, still unable to get through that Reaper.
Bustillos activated Giant Trunade, with six cards still in hand. Highline debated his options, then played Solemn Judgment. Bustillos summoned Phantom Skyblaster, summoned two Tokens with it, then special summoned Krebons with Emergency Teleport. Bustillos gave up Krebons and a Token for Goyo Guardian, attacked Highline’s Goyo, and smacked into Mirror Force! Bustillos passed.
Highline drew Dark Armed Dragon and activated Allure of Darkness, removing the Dragon. He followed it up with Monster Reborn targeting his Krebons, and lost out to D.D. Crow. He activated another Allure, drew Krebons and Heavy, and removed the Krebons. Mezuki took down the last Skyblaster Token and Malicious went to defense mode. “I can’t believe I can’t get over a Reaper!”
Bustillos summoned Krebons. “I can’t stop that,” announced Highline. He was bluffing, since he still had Judgment down. He summoned Krebons next turn, Synchro summoned Stardust Dragon with Destiny Hero – Malicious, and attacked Stardust, then Goyo Guardian, then Mezuki into Krebons, for a total of 2400 life points paid — Bustillos negated all three attacks. He was down to 5600 life points, while Highline had 4000. Next turn all Bustillos could do was set a spell or trap.
All three monsters rushed Krebons again, and Bustillos paid another 2400 life points — he was down to 3200. In main phase 2, Highline activated Heavy Storm, a boggling move that clearly left Bustillos confused; he only had one card set, to Highline’s set card and two Card of Safe Return. Bustillos did not respond, and Highline made a brilliant move: he negated his own Storm by tributing Stardust Dragon! He immediately ended his turn, special summoned Stardust, and drew two cards with Card of Safe Return! That left him with D.D. Crow, Pyramid Turtle, and Zombie Master in hand. “I know that was a weird move, but I Pot of Greeded mah Storm!” Highline drawled it for comedic effect. Play was to Bustillos.
He drew to four cards in hand. Emergency Teleport got him another Krebons, and tributed it for Destiny Hero – Malicious! Bustillos Synchro summoned Colossal Fighter, and Highline flipped Solemn Judgment, but Bustillos had one of his own to force it through! The duel stood at 2000 life points to Bustillos’ 1600. Colossal Fighter attacked Goyo Guardian, and Highline dropped to 1700.
He drew Goblin Zombie. “I’ll go the safer route and switch everything to defense.” He turned Mezuki and Stardust to defense, and set Pyramid Turtle. Bustillos activated Reinforcement of the Army, searched his deck for Dark Grepher, and discarded Malicious to special summon it. Colossal Fighter took out Stardust Dragon, and when Grepher crashed into Pyramid Turtle Highline got Il Blud from his deck! Bustillos passed with one card in hand, and nothing set.
Highline had Goblin Zombie, D.D. Crow, Hand Destruction, and Zombie Master. He normal summoned Il Blud, used it to special summon Pyramid Turtle, and got Mezuki and another Malicious. He turned his Mezuki to attack mode, traded it in battle for Dark Grepher, and set Hand Destruction. He flipped it next turn once Bustillos had drawn back to two cards, discarding Mezuki and Malicious: Bustillos lost Brain Control and his third Malicious, getting two new cards. Highline got Dark Armed Dragon and Malicious. Colossal Fighter attacked Il Blud, sending both Blud and Pyramid Turtle to the graveyard. Highline was down to 200 life points.
Next turn he removed Mezuki, special summoning Il Blud for two more cards. That let him get down to three Dark monsters, and Dark Armed Dragon hit the field! Colossal Fighter was destroyed by the Dragon’s effect, and the Spirit Reaper was finally destroyed too, leaving Highline in the clear to swing for game with Il Blud!
Matt Highline soaks up the offense early and grinds his way toward an answer, after being locked down turn after turn by Spirit Reaper! Both competitors went for their side decks and started swapping cards in and out. Highline brought in two Skill Drain and two Kycoo, getting rid of his Pyramid Turtles, Heavy Storm, and Mirror Force to do so.
Bustillos opened Game 2 with Cyber Valley in attack mode. Highline had two Krebons, two Foolish Burial, Mezuki, and Hand Destruction. He activated Hand Destruction and pitched Mezuki and one of his Krebons, while Bustillos ditched Vanity’s Fiend and Crush Card Virus. Highline got two Zombie Master for his troubles, then sent Malicious to his graveyard with Foolish Burial. He normal summoned Krebons, synched up for Stardust Dragon, and played another Foolish Burial to kick Il Blud to the graveyard. Stardust attacked Cyber Valley, Bustillos negated the attack to get a draw, and Highline ended.
Bustillos played Monster Reborn next turn, taking Highline’s Krebons. Emergency Teleport got him one of his own, and he tributed both for Light and Darkness Dragon! The Dragon then took down Stardust in battle, and Bustillos ended. This was going to be rough — suddenly those copies of Mezuki and Malicious in Highline’s graveyard weren’t nearly so good. He removed Malicious, normal summoned Zombie Master, discarded Zombie Master, and knocked Light and Darkness Dragon down two notches total. He sent Zombie Master to attack Light and Darkness Dragon, both were destroyed, and the Dragon’s effect brought back Krebons for Bustillos. Mezuki got Highline Il Blud and he set Dimensional Prison.
But Bustillos went off huge next turn! He summoned Breaker the Magical Warrior, broke Dimensional Prison, special summoned Dark Grepher by discarding Malicious, and removed Malicious to summon another. That let him Synchro summon for Thought Ruler Archfiend. Thought Ruler attacked Il Blud, Grepher made a direct attack, and Breaker followed suit. Highline had no cards left in hand. He ripped Dark Armed Dragon next turn but was stuck with four Darks in the graveyard!
“You got me.”
David Bustillos fights back, taking Game 2 with one big push that wipes Matt Highline out! Both duelists sided and shuffled.
Highline started the third duel with Solemn Judgment, Mezuki, Skill Drain, Allure of Darkness, Monster Reborn, and Hand Destruction. He set Mezuki, set Skill Drain, and ended. Bustillos summoned Breaker the Magical Warrior and Highline paid 1000 life points to chain Skill Drain. Bustillos set one card to his back row and passed, fearing Pyramid Turtle or an established graveyard. “Go.”
Highline drew Zombie Master, and then activated Allure of Darkness; it got him another Solemn and another Mezuki at the cost of his Zombie Master. He flip summoned Mezuki, ran over Breaker, then set both copies of Solemn — he was really slow-rolling that Hand Destruction, trying to get as much mileage as possible out of his two Mezukis.
Reinforcement of the Army let Bustillos search out Elemental Hero Stratos next turn. He summoned, aware that he wouldn’t get his effect, and attacked Mezuki to destroy it. Highline drew Goblin Zombie and ditched that and Mezuki for Hand Destruction. Bustillos got to put his Malicious in the graveyard, but lost his Phantom Skyblaster. D.D. Crow removed Highline’s Goblin Zombie from his graveyard, and Highline activated Monster Reborn to take the Malicious!
He summoned Krebons, and synched up for Stardust Dragon. Stardust took down Stratos for the hard loss and 700 damage, and Highline ended with Zombie Master in hand. He had Stardust Dragon on the field, Skill Drain activated, and two Solemn set with 6900 life points.
Bustillos drew, and had 7100 life points. He had four cards in hand and one card set. He activated Brain Control, and Highline flipped Solemn Judgment to keep his Stardust! Bustillos removed Malicious to special summon another, normal summoned Krebons and Synchro summoned Thought Ruler — Highline flipped Solemn, but Bustillos had another Solemn to trump it yet again! That left Bustillos with two cards, and Thought Ruler ran over Stardust Dragon. “I’ll say go.”
Highline had Zombie Master and Foolish Burial in hand, but nothing else. He set the Zombie Master, passed, and next turn it was all over! Bustillos normal summoned Dark Grepher, attacked with it to take down Zombie Master, and attacked directly with Thought Ruler to end the match!
David Bustillos comes back from a loss in the first duel, sweeping Matt Highline’s Zombie deck 2-0 in games 2 and 3 to move on undefeated!