First of all, I’d like to introduce myself. My name is David Bui. You may remember me from feature match coverage at Shonen Jump Championship Columbus, Philadelphia, and the Canadian National Championships. I’ve been a fan of Yu-Gi-Oh! (both the show and Trading Card Game) since 2003, but since talking about me is quite extraneous, I’m going to get down to what you all came here to see! Look for this killer new trap card at the Sneak Previews this weekend...
Treacherous Trap Hole
Destroy 2 monsters on the field. You cannot activate this card if you have any Trap Cards in your Graveyard.
This card just yells field control, and it’s extremely strong in the early game. Treacherous Trap Hole doesn’t care what position its targets are in: if it’s a monster, that’s all the card needs. You can even activate multiple copies of it in a chain to really shut down your opponent’s field presence. If your opponent plays too aggressively or too defensively, this card will punish him or her for it. Destroying two opposing monsters can definitely stop your opponent’s momentum and give you control over the duel.
The fact that you can eliminate two of your opponent’s cards for just one of yours—without paying a cost—means this card automatically warrants further examination. Could Treacherous Trap Hole be used in competitive play? It definitely has potential, and a closer look shows that it’s surprisingly versatile.
The Anti-EverythingJudging from the look of your average competitive metagame right now, Treacherous Trap Hole can be played effectively against any popular deck. At the same time, almost any current deck can also splash it. But let’s look at what kind of damage this thing can do in a contemporary metagame.
Against Teleport Dark Armed Dragon, your opponent can negate this card’s effect with Stardust Dragon. But it’s pretty difficult to summon Stardust to the field when this card is ready to be activated: as soon as Destiny Hero - Malicious and Krebons hit the field, you can activate Treacherous Trap Hole before the Synchro summon can be declared. It basically stops the problem at the source, and if your opponent can’t Synchro summon with a TeleDAD deck, you know that he or she will be sidelined for quite awhile.
Lightsworn has defined itself as a deck known for swarming. Let’s say your opponent opened up with a Lightsworn and scored a free summon of Wulf, Lightsworn Beast in the end phase. Treacherous Trap Hole will get rid of both monsters, destroying any free gain that your opponent just received. Lumina, Lightsworn Summoner could special summon any Lightsworn, but once that monster is summoned, Treacherous Trap Hole will take care of both Lumina and the monster she brought up, cutting down the swarming power of the archetype. Even after discarding a card for Lumina, there goes all the hard work.
Speaking of swarming, you’ll definitely be seeing a lot of swarm in the future thanks to all the new support Zombies will be getting in Crossroads of Chaos. Treacherous Trap Hole will definitely put a hurt on those decks. Zombie Master into another Zombie, Book of Life, Mezuki . . . it doesn’t matter how it happens, you’re eventually going to be staring down a horde of Zombies, and Treacherous Trap Hole will cut off a lot of the momentum your opponent was relying on. If Plaguespreader Zombie enters the mix then the same pre-emptive tricks discussed in the TeleDAD matchup apply here, destroying Tuners and Synchro materials before they turn into Synchros.
Gladiator Beasts aren’t getting any slack either. A common play from Gladiator Beasts couples Elemental Hero Prisma and Test Tiger, tagging out the renamed Prisma to bring up Gladiator Beast Darius. Darius’s effect then special summons the copy of Gladiator Beast Bestiari that Prisma put in your graveyard, leaving the Gladiator duelist to contact Fuse for Gladiator Beast Gyzarus. Again, Treacherous Trap Hole steps in at the root of the problem, eliminating Darius and Bestiari before Gyzarus can hit the table. It works very well against Gladiator Beast Secutor too, pre-empting Gladiator Beast Heraklinos. You can even use it to punch through something as simple as Gladiator Beast Hoplomus and a second Gladiator.
Reading the Fine PrintNow a card this powerful that carries no activation cost . . . there has to be a catch, right? Well, there is: you cannot have any trap cards at all in your graveyard when you activate it. That restriction looks imposing, but it’s easily overcome with a few cards, some of which haven’t seen competitive play until now.
Mask of Darkness: Mask of Darkness will help pluck that one pesky trap card from your graveyard that’s preventing you from activating Treacherous Trap Hole. That’s a good solution in the mid- and early game, but pairing up both cards as an opening move is no laughing matter either. For example, if you’re playing second and your opponent set a monster, you could fire back with a set card to each zone: Mask of Darkness and Treacherous Trap Hole. If your opponent sets or summons another monster, you can spring your trap and reclaim it next turn when you flip it. Set a second spell or trap and many opponents might read your face-down monster as Morphing Jar, giving them even more reason to play a second monster before they attack.
Diskblade Rider: I bet you clicked on the link to this card’s information when you first read it, didn’t you? Diskblade Rider was a quickly forgotten rare from Light of Destruction: removing a trap from your graveyard beefs this bad boy up to a respectable 2200 ATK, and it’s a nice little beatstick that happens to be a strong enabler for Treacherous’s activation requirement. It’s fairly straightforward, but definitely shouldn’t be overlooked if you plan to abuse Treacherous Trap Hole.
Cyber Valley/A Feather of the Phoenix: Using the same logic with Diskblade but applying a different method of removing traps from your graveyard, these two cards let you reduce the number of traps you’re stuck with by spinning them back to the top of your deck. Reusing a copy of Treacherous Trap Hole by drawing it again is great, but even if your targeted card is removed by D.D. Crow, your main goal has been achieved: your trap is out of the graveyard and you’ll be free to activate future copies of Treacherous.
Soul Release: Another card on the sleeper list, this one goes all the way back to Metal Raiders. This is probably the fastest way to set up Treacherous Trap Hole, and since most decks run between seven and nine traps you aren’t going to be seeing more than five in the graveyard before the duel is over. Soul Release will almost always be able to clear all your traps while also providing aggressive graveyard disruption, giving it more utility.
Macro Cosmos/Banisher of the Radiance: Dipping a little more into the philosophical side of things, Macro Cosmos and Banisher of the Radiance make for an astoundingly simple solution. You don’t have to worry about removing traps from the graveyard if you never let them get there in the first place.
Trap of Darkness: This nifty little rare from The Duelist Genesis has been overlooked in competitive play. If you select Treacherous Trap Hole’s effect as the one you want to copy, you can ignore the Trap Hole’s activation requirement and just destroy two monsters regardless of how many traps are in your graveyard. Pretty neat, eh?
Final ThoughtsI really like this card as an early play. Most duelists need a turn or two before they start threatening you, and if you can shut down their first big push they’ll probably be vulnerable as a result. I really like the idea of playing three copies in Macro Cosmos. Late in the game this card could be a dead draw, so I suggest using it in faster strategies that won’t see that late game, and that can really press the advantage of early removal.
Treacherous Trap Hole isn’t something you’ll see in every deck, but it’s definitely something to consider during your deckbuilding process. Give the card a shot in a few different places and I don’t think you’ll be disappointed. It has potential and it just screams to be abused with the right support. Check it out this weekend at the Crossroads of Chaos Sneak Preview event in your area!