Evan Vargas, of constant Internet community fame and infamy, is the very vocal mouthpiece of Team Savage. Chad Justice is the creator of the Armed Samurai - Ben Kei deck. A Top 8 finisher at Shonen Jump Championship Houston, his deck building ingenuity has earned him a quick reputation."
Justice won the coin flip and opted to go first. “42 cards?” asked Vargas as he counted out Justice’s deck in a pile shuffle. “It’s too good to cut anything!” grinned Justice from below the brim of his white cotton Sundevil cap. He opened with two set spell or traps and passed.
Vargas opened up strongly with Delinquent Duo, costing Justice Heavy Storm and then Airknight Parshath. He set three spells or traps, a monster, and passed, but Justice used Mystical Space Typhoon on him in the end phase, costing him Book of Moon.
Justice needed something big, and got it in the form of Graceful Charity. “Do you have Delinquent tooooo?” asked Vargas.
“No, but I have the other one!” Justice laughed as he dropped Pot of Greed and drew. Nobleman of Crossout took aim at Vargas’s face down monster, but My Body As A Shield prevented it from hitting.
Next turn, Vargas flipped his face down Mystical Space Typhoon to destroy Justice’s one face down card, revealing Scapegoat! The Sheep tokens came up, but Vargas flipped Gravekeeper’s Spy, nabbed a Gravekeeper’s Spear Soldier with its effect, and summoned Sinister Serpent. Three Sheep tokens bit the dust moments later.
Justice was still in the game, though, and next turn he used Premature Burial to bring back Airknight Parshath. It attacked, but was prevented from dealing damage by Book of Moon. Justice played Swords of Revealing Light, much to Vargas’s chagrin.
“I’m such a noob!” moaned Vargas, as he topdecked Graceful Charity, bemoaning the loss of his Serrpent to the field. He discarded everything but Necrovalley, turned Sinister Serpent and the Spy to defense position, and passed.
Justice summoned Sangan and sent Airknight Parshath into the Spear Soldier, forgetting Necrovalley was on the field. Airknight crashed and was destroyed, Sangan took down Sinister, and play passed to Vargas. Vargas took back his Serpent, set a spell or trap, and passed.
“We both play like scrubs,” laughed Vargas.
“That’s why we’re both X-2,” smiled Justice.
He drew, and his last Sheep became a Thousand-Eyes Restrict, courtesy of his last Sheep token and Metamorphosis. Thousand-Eyes Restrict sucked up the Spear Soldier and Vargas was yet again up.
He set a monster and passed. “Tsuku, off the top!” declared Justice, hopefully drawing. He missed it, set another monster, and again passed.
Vargas drew and looked at his hand—Swords of Revealing Light was now off the field. “Okay, let’s work some magic here. What could that silly monster be down there…” He activated Book of Moon on the Thousand-Eyes Restrict, then used Nobleman of Crossout on the face down monster that Justice controlled, revealing Big Shield Gardna!
“Of course . . . I’m Sandtrap.” Vargas bemoaned his poor luck as the Nobleman bounced off harmlessly.
Sinister Serpent smacked Thousand-Eyes Restrict. D. D. Assailant attacked Big Shield Gardna to turn it to attack position, and the Spy finished it off. It was 4600 to 4000 in Vargas’s favor, but Justice was up next.
Justice set another monster and turned Sangan to defense. Vargas sent the Assailant at the face down Justice had set—Magician of Faith—and turned the Spy and Serpent to defense. When Justice showed him a topdecked Breaker the Magical Warrior on the following turn Vargas scooped. “We’ll move on to the serious stuff now” he said.
There was no banter between the duels. Both players clearly wanted to win, despite being willing to joke about their X-2 records. They were both on the bubble, and with good tiebreakers they could both make it to Day 2. Each took their time side decking before the game began, and Vargas opened the second duel.
He seemed visibly displeased with his opening hand, and after some hesitation, he set a card to each of his zones. Justice had a slightly rough start too, with a hand that featured two copies of Tsukuyomi, one Metamorphosis, and more. Not bad cards, but dead in the opening. He set one Tsukuyomi, passed, Vargas set a spell or trap, passed, and Justice had an opening.
He summoned Hand of Nephthys, tributed both of his monsters, and brought out Sacred Phoenix of Nephthys. It attacked Vargas’s face down monster, Big Shield Gardna, and was repelled by it.
Next turn, Vargas turned the Gardna back to defense position. He set another spell or trap and looked at Justice: “Go.” Justice had nothing, and passed back. Vargas passed in return, Justice set a monster and passed, Vargas passed back yet again, and play was to Justice.
He flipped his set Cyber Jar—when the Phoenix returned to play, it would be taking up to three of Vargas’s cards with it! Each player scored a single monster. Vargas set his, while Justice kept his face up, a Tribe-Infecting Virus. He then used Delinquent Duo, and managed to pick Graceful Charity. Vargas snorted slightly, cursing his infamous bad luck before discarding Bottomless Trap Hole.
Justice’s turn continued as he sent the Tribe into Vargas’s face down, but it was stopped short by Ring of Destruction, and the life point totals were 5200 to 6400 in Vargas’s favor. Justice set three spells or traps. Though the Phoenix would destroy them, he could either set the cards or discard them in the end phase, so he opted to use them. He set one monster and Vargas activated Scapegoat as he tried to end his turn.
He drew, and had nine cards. He tributed for Mobius the Frost Monarch, blew away Mirror Force, but ate Book of Moon. Necrovalley hit the field, and in the end phase, one of Vargas’s remaining two sets was blown away by Dust Tornado.
The Phoenix came up and shattered Necrovalley. Vargas blinked. “Oh. I forgot about that. I’m a scrub.” It was clearly not Evan Vargas’s day. Justice set another monster, examined his fusion deck, graveyard, and then set a card to his spell and trap zone. Despite having an in-hand Lightning Vortex, he decided not to press Vargas offensively. Clearly, the two face down monsters that Justice had at his disposal were not battle worthy.
Vargas summoned Breaker the Magical Warrior next turn and attempted to attack, but was again hit with Book of Moon. Pot of Greed bought him two more cards in main phase two, and he set one spell or trap before passing. Justice passed right back after setting another spell or trap and bringing up the phoenix.
A turn later, Vargas attempted to rally. he used Metamorphosis to summon Thousand-Eyes Restrict, but Justice had an answer in the form of Torrential Tribute. It was 4400 to 6400 for Vargas and he set a monster.
Next turn the Phoenix came back up, blew away Vargas’s Sakuretsu Armor, and Justice set Sinister Serpent. He used Metamorphosis to turn it into Thousand-Eyes Restrict, absorbed the face-down Gravekeeper’s Spy, and then set a spell or trap.
Vargas considered his cards carefully. “I’m playing so bad . . . serious.” He went through his graveyard, then Justice’s. He finally decided to Heavy Storm, eliminating his own Spy as well as Justice’s set Call of the Haunted. “This is so horrible. It should be game, but I’m not gonna be able to do it—because this hand is so cruddy.” Still, Vargas was taking his time, and it seemed like he might have had something.
Finally, he mad a move. Snatch Steal took control of Thousand-Eyes Restrict, which in turn inhaled the Phoenix. He then attacked directly, set a monster, and a spell or trap. “Go ahead.”
Moving decisively, Justice retrieved his Sinister Serpent. He then played a Snatch Steal of his own on the Thousand-Eyes, and Vargas reluctantly handed it back to him. It attacked the face down monster Vargas had set, but Vargas used Book of Moon to prevent the attack: “I should’ve done that Last Turn.”
Time was called. Justice set a monster and passed. Three turns remained.
Vargas drew, flipped his Gravekeeper’s Spy, grabbed another, and dropped a Spear Soldier to the field. Nobleman of Crossout cleaned out one set monster and Vargas took the game then and there. Play moved to a four-turn, sudden-death final!
Vargas was up first. He set two spells or traps and a monster, and passed. The winner of this duel would be the person with the lowest life point total at the end of the four turns, two for each player.
Vargas used Heavy Storm to destroy Book of Moon and Ring of Destruction. Swords of Revealing Light then flipped Vargas’s face down Gravekeeper’s Spy, bringing a second to the field. Justice set another spell or trap, a monster, and both players had walls at their disposal.
“Give me something!” Vargas pounded his deck. He drew. “Perfect! Sarcasm meter going off the wall here.” He summoned Mobius the Frost Monarch, but Justice had a Torrential Tribute, so the field was wiped.
“That’s it—if you have a monster it’s over” stated Vargas. Justice had one, and Magician of Faith finished the game on Justice’s behalf!
“You know what the cruel part was? I topdecked that Magician.” Ouch.