Yu-Gi-Oh Cross Duel is the latest by—product of the original collectible card game Yu-Gi-Oh, creating a new format that could affect the original card game if it becomes popular. With the passing of Yu-Gi-Oh’s creator, Kazuki Takahashi, the series is entering an era far beyond the creative vision that spawned it, and the game itself follows suit.
The Yu-Gi-Oh card game has never shied away from changes in its formula, and for a while it introduced an additional monster from the deck along with new series releases, starting with synchronous monsters and, at the time of writing, ending with reference monsters. Sometimes this led to huge changes in the rules and eventually led to the emergence of new game formats, including speed duels, fast duels, and now cross duels.
A remix of an old theme
The essence of cross-duel has its roots in the high-speed duel, which itself is a stripped-down version of the original Yu-Gi-Oh format, as can be seen from games such as Yu-Gi-Oh Master Duel, which even prohibits and restricts Yu-Gi-Oh. -Gi-Oh cards for those for the same reasons as the physical game. Like speed duels, cross duels give each player three monster zones and three spell/trap zones, as well as 4,000 life points for each player. However, the similarity ends there.
Each monster zone is connected to a different player: one on the right, one on the left and one directly opposite. When a player has a monster in attack mode, it moves one zone in the direction of the enemy player’s monster zone at the beginning of the battle phase. Monsters that collide with each other fight, reducing their attack points (or defense points if one monster is in defense mode) by the total number of enemy points. When the Attack or Defense reaches 0, the monster is destroyed. Monsters that reach their opponent’s zone deal damage to him every turn equal to their (now possibly reduced) Attack, and heal their owner by the same amount. This puts everything off, even instant wins, which means questions like whether to force Exodia to acquire entirely new dimensions.
The result is a game that looks like Yu-Gi-Oh and sounds like Yu-Gi-Oh, but is played as Yu-Gi-Oh very freely. Even monsters are different: they don’t have initial effects, but they can equip various skills obtained with the help of a skill tree that can be unlocked with in-game materials. In addition to the Yu-Gi-Oh Master Duel crafting system, players can also melt additional copies of cards to unlock skills. They don’t even have special monster types like Fusion and Synchro, and after receiving them they still remain in the main deck (there is no additional deck). Despite the many levels of separation between this game and regular duels or even speed duels, some elements may come back and revolutionize these formats.
When creating an account, each player can choose one of several super rare monsters to get it and become its ace. Others can be obtained through packages, but this is quite rare. First-class monsters have their own unique skills in the skill tree, and there can only be one in each deck. However, perhaps the most important thing about monster aces is that the player’s ace always starts in his hand. There is never a question about whether it will be drawn, since it is always there, and always having the strongest monster card in the deck at the player’s hand can be a huge boon.
In the standard Yu-Gi-Oh format, there are maps that have received the unofficial name Staple. These are cards that are so strong with such a small activation requirement that they are automatically included in most decks and determine the meta during their life cycle and beyond. Examples include old classic cards such as “Raigeki” and “Monster Rebirth”, relatively new cards such as “Ash Blossom and Joyful Spring” and “Infinite Impermanence”, as well as the infamous “Maxx-C”. Most players include these cards for guaranteed combos, destruction, and/or the possibility of a comeback. Now imagine if, like an ace monster, a player could choose one or more cards to start a duel in his hand. The most expensive Yu-Gi-Oh cards look much cheaper when there is always a guaranteed return on investment in every duel.
This change could greatly alter the Yu-Gi-Oh meta-landscape, as the question will no longer be whether the opponent “has” ready-made staples, but rather “what” staples they have prepared. and “when” they fix these cards. As soon as each player thinks about “when” his opponent will burn his “Maxx-C” or “Monster Reborn”, instead of wondering if they have it at all, the game becomes more tense. Players don’t like that “Maxx-C” is unloaded in Yu-Gi-Oh Master Duel, but in a game where each player is guaranteed to have one and only one “Maxx-C” that can be spent from the very beginning of the game, things get more tense and hopefully less based on chance.
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There is another element to which this applies in Cross Duel: the map of the central strip.