In ancient times in a land far off, long before the rule of the seven kings, the world lived in quiet disarray. With no intelligent life, nature was content to live with itself as nature is want to do. Then one fateful day, a peculiar seed sprouted . The seed’s origin was uncertain. Perhaps just a product of the earth, or a traveler from a far off world. Either way, the seed grew into a powerful tree over time. Magic gathered in and around that tree like no other. As centuries passed onward, the tree spread out its roots into a vast sprouting network of smaller trees, creating a large forest in the center of the continent. When humanoid life finally took its first steps on that planet, they all flocked to the great tree, marveling in awe of it’s size and strength. They basked in its magical aura, and learned the ways of will. With time they gave the tree a name; Yggdrasil.
Ironically weak to being cut down with a herring.
Yggdrasil joins the small group of Rulers without a J-ruler side. As such it cannot join combat directly. I mean what do you expect, it is a tree after all. Yggdrasil also doesn’t have a slew of abilities. Instead it only has one. One extremely powerful one. Essentially whenever your opponent would reduce your life to zero (ONLY your opponent. You can’t set this card off with cards you control) you are instead reduced to 100 life, keeping you alive. This only works once per game, so you’d best make the most of it. Leaving you alive with 100 life doesn’t sound like much of an ability, especially if your opponent has an attack remaining that can pick you off. However Yggdrasil’s effect goes even further, instantly generating a combo that will give you strong advantage and safety from further harm. After changing your life to 100, you can search your deck for the new Alice resonator, and her new weapon, Excalibur X. After searching for one of each of these cards, you immediately play them. This may not sound like much yet, but once you see how those two cards work in conjunction you’ll see the safety they can provide.
Now, Yggdrasil is a kind of card we’ve never seen before. It essentially provides a safety net and doesn’t much support a strategy, unless your strategy involves hurting yourself then letting your opponent take the last shot so that you can summon Alice and Excalibur for free. This does, however, give you freedom to explore strategies that would otherwise be too slow. The one thing you’ll have to watch out for is Gill Lapis. Lapis can easily steal Alice and Excalibur for himself, which would really put Yggdrasil in hot water. You’ll want cards that can counter activated abilities like Glimpse of Kaguya to keep him from taking the two, or a card like send back, to return the stolen cards to your hand. A common mistake is that Yggdrasil’s ability can be countered by the new Kaguya. However, it cannot. Yggdrasil’s ability is not an automatic ability, but rather a replacement effect.
A giant lion turtle did it.
Alice has once again made a transformation. This time after receiving the power of Yggdrasil. A total cost of six means you likely won’t be playing her under normal circumstances, but with Yggdrasil that isn’t really much of an issue. Quickcast means that if you ever do have the will to play it, you can cast it at nearly any time. Target attack and 1500 ATK and DEF isn’t too bad either. You’ll be able to attack and pick off pretty much any J/resonator you wish. Even Gill Lapis will be forced to flee from that much power. Let’s talk about the ability which makes this new Alice so unique. Whenever damage would be dealt to her controller, it is instead dealt to her. This means that after summoning her with Yggdrasil’s ability, your opponent will have to deal 1500 damage to Alice first. That doesn’t sound like too much, plus your opponent could always use one of the several cards that can bounce or destroy Alice, leaving Yggdrasil totally exposed. However…
This thing just gets more and more unwieldy.
Hey look! Excalibur is like the Alice of regalia! It changes after every set, too! This Excalibur costs three void, discouraging its play in decks that can’t play it for free (though it still certainly could be played without Yggdrasil). As long as this card is in your field, you can’t be targeted by spells or abilities your opponent controls. So say goodbye to taking damage from cards like thunder. Cards that don’t target, but still deal damage, are still a threat though, so watch out (though if you also have Avatar Alice out, she’ll soak the damage for you). The card also grants your J-ruler and all Avatar Alices you control an extra 400 ATK and DEF. Not too shabby if played for free with Yggdrasil. While it won’t help the tree, it does power up Alice, meaning that she can soak more hits before being destroyed. The final ability also helps protect your J-ruler and Alice. Any spell or ability that targets them is cancelled unless the control pays an extra two void. Take note that the final ability applies to both players, not just your opponent. So if you attempt to target your J-ruler with an ability or spell (for example the ability of another regalia) it will be cancelled unless you pay two void. As such you’re probably not going to want to use this card in many decks that utilize offensive J-rulers that benefit from regalia. You can probably tell by now how Excalibur X and Avatar Alice work together. They form a powerful defense to keep you alive after Yggdrasil saves you by keeping you at 100 life. Once you get the combo off, the remaining issue is taking back control of the board and dealing damage to your opponent before they can pick off Alice.
Oddly enough they aren’t fairies.
Here’s another card that is all about defending Yggdrasil. Child of the Forest is a total cost two resonator with some of the highest DEF you can have that early; 900. That is incredible. 300 ATK…not so much, but it’s a pretty fair trade off. When your Ruler is Yggdrasil the card can even block resonators with Flying, allowing it to pretty much stop anything unless it’s been made unblockable via things like Glinda. Child of the Forest also cannot be dealt damage by J-rulers, meaning decks that focus on dealing damage that way like Overlord Valentina and Gill Lapis are going to have trouble, as this card can perpetually wall them off. This card is absolutely fantastic with Yggdrasil, possibly even without. It’s one of the most incredible defenders we’ve seen in the game.
They look mint flavored.
And wouldn’t you know it, there’s another total cost two card dedicated to protecting Yggdrasil. 400 ATK and DEF is a bit lame compared to Child of the Forest, but this card does pack a few powerful abilities. When the World Tree Protector is killed you can search your deck for another Avatar card (it doesn’t need to be a World Tree Protector, so you can totally search for Avatar Alice or…maybe the King in Yellow?) and add it to your hand. World Tree Protector also gets +200 ATK and DEF for each Avatar card in your graveyard. In most decks you’ll probably use this search ability to search out another World Tree protector to block with. This will continue the chain of cards you can use to block with, and each new World Tree Protector you play is stronger than the last.
Interesting note: the card “Fetal Movement in Outer World” should actually be “Foment in Outer World”.
Fetal movement and foment are the same word in Japanese.
We’ve looked at several resonators, so why don’t we take a look at a new Yggdrasil spell? Foment of the World Tree will help you recover life after Yggdrasil saves you from death. You can put any number of cards from your hand on the bottom of your main deck and then draw that many cards plus one, while gaining 800 life. This can be a great blessing of a card for when you have a dead hand. You can cycle as many cards as are in your hand, you draw an extra card to replace the one you lost by casting the spell and you gain 800 life to help stall out your opponent long enough to play the new cards you’ve drawn. The only drawback is that the card is a Spell: Chant, meaning you’ll have to commit to playing it in your main phase. A card like this can help a Yggdrasil player out when they’ve got an opening hand full of Avatar Alice’s that you can’t play until much later in the game.
FINALLY! A stone without gears!
Here’s the last new magic stone of the set; Yggdrasil’s Memoria. The card destroys itself should you ever control a J-ruler, so cards like Grimm and Yggdrasil are likely the only ones to take an interest in it. It can only produce wind will, but by paying one wind and resting the stone you can recover a resonator, but only on your opponents turn. Yeah so…in most cases this card is pretty weak. In a Yggdrasil deck with Alice and Excalibur X, you’ll probably want to accelerate your will using Gretel and then sacrifice it to Adombrali, and using Yggdrasil’s Memoria would hinder that plan. I suppose if you weren’t using Gretel (what with the abundance of green one drops that can generate will these days) and your deck was primarily wind cards, then the card could find some use. Barring certain strategic combos, you might be better off using other magic stones.
Be sure to check back on Tuesday for another preview article! And look for The Moonlit Savior, in stores on March 11th!
Written by Jordan E. Blanco