Invoking Thunder Dragon
An Artifact Windwitch Invoked deck was spotted running Thunder Dragon in a tournament not too long ago – Hatti CS X Dragon Star Cup Nipponbashi (23/12).
In this article, we will discuss the utility of running Thunder Dragon in a Fusion-centric deck.
Level 5 / LIGHT / Thunder
ATK 1600 / DEF 1500
(1): During your Main Phase, by discarding this card, add up to 2 “Thunder Dragons” from your Deck to your hand.
Being a Light Attribute monster, Thunder Dragon increases the count of Light monsters in the deck to aid in the summoning of Merkabah the Invoked. The discarded copy, instead of the copies in hand, can be used to be as the required Fusion Material. By using graveyard monsters as fusion materials, the fusion summoning process is hence less resource-costly. Thunder Dragon can land itself in the graveyard during the first turn, as opposed to plenty of the other Light Attribute monsters in the deck.
Merkabah the Invoked‘s negation effect augments the deck’s board control capabilities and grant the ability to fend off threats, such as board-wiping negation. Therefore, it is a valued member that players aim to bring out on their first turn field set up.
Invoked decks have cards that require discards. Twin Twister, Super Polymerisation and some players tech in Lightning Vortex. Being a non-essential combo piece of the deck, Thunder Dragon can fill-in as a discard fodder without putting the user in a position to make hard choices when paying for the discard cost.
Thunder Dragon, as a monster card, can be used as a discard fodder for Merkabah the Invoked to negate monster effects. The Zoodiac engine is a popular pick in plenty of decks. Stopping monster effects hence becomes a priority in plenty of matchups. While Aleister the Invoker will probably return to hand after a typical fusion summon, Thunder Dragon is there to ensure that the player retains it in hand, rather than discard it as cost to negate a monster effect. This way, the player can follow up with another fusion summon on the following turn by summoning Aleister the Invoker.
Thunder Dragon, being a Light Attribute Level 5 can participate in an Xyz Summon alongside the Artifact monsters. It is not uncommon to witness revival traps like Call of the Haunted in decks piloting an Artifact engine. Resurrect Thunder Dragon from the grave when you have either Artifact Scythe or Artifact Moralltach on field, and you can usher out Constellar Pleiades.
Additionally, searching out two copies of Thunder Dragon also thins the deck. Along with the deck searching done by Reckless Magic Circle and Aleister the Invoke, it filters the deck to allow you a higher probability to draw into floodgates.
Opening with two copies in your hand may hurt, but it would still be wise and appropriate to ditch one of them to retrieve the final copy from your deck. The last thing you want is for you to draw into your third copy during any one of your Draw Phases. It wastes both the draw and the effect of Thunder Dragon.
And if you really do open with three copies, just stare into space and question the laws of probability. It happens. Play three copies of Maxx “C” and Thunder Dragon, but you always end up drawing into multiple Thunder Dragons, whereas you end up wondering if you even placed Maxx “C” in your deck after five rounds of swiss.
Thunder Dragon was previously a staple in Pendulum decks to summon out Rank 5 with relative ease. Older players would recall its synergy with the now-Forbidden Graceful Charity. Activate Thunder Dragon‘s effect, fetch a couple more to hand, Graceful Charity achieves a draw three and discard both Thunder Dragons. Essentially, the discard cost is mitigated by Thunder Dragon. Not only do you only spend a single card in card economics, you do not have to sacrifice any other important card pieces.
Today, the logic remains sound. Thunder Dragon is a substitute that takes the rap so that cards such as Ghost Ogre & Snow Rabbit or Artifact Scythe can perform better tasks rather than be forfeited as a fusion material.