What is Empty Jar?
Empty Jar is a Yu-Gi-Oh! Goat Format combo deck that wins via deckout. It does this through its 1 Cyber Jar, 1 Morphing Jar, 3 Book of Moon, 3 Book of Taiyou, 3 The Shallow Grave, 1 Card Destruction, and 1-2 Serial Spell.
Empty Jar Strategy
Empty Jar is the notorious “mill deck” of the format, securing its wins by forcing the opponent through whatever means necessary to draw from an empty deck and therefore to lose the game. The Empty Jar player abuses the flip effects of Cyber Jar and Morphing Jar. Specifically, it does so by using Book of Taiyou in combination with The Shallow Grave or Book of Moon to repeatedly trigger Cyber Jar or Morphing Jar several times in a single turn. Empty Jar is a high-synergy, spell-heavy combo deck that will seek to avoid damage until it has one of its Jar combos, which could be as early as turn 1 or as late as turn 10.
Empty Jar Core Interactions
Empty Jar's key interaction is to use either Cyber Jar with Book of Taiyou and The Shallow Grave or Morphing Jar with Book of Taiyou and Book of Moon. Either of the combo pieces can be added back to the hand with Spell Reproduction or put on top of the deck with A Feather of the Phoenix. This interaction allows you to repeatedly draw 5 cards at the cost of only 2-4 cards, netting your more combo pieces and continuing the engine.
The Jar combos cause the opponent to draw cards as well, with Cyber Jar's effect causing the opponent's hand size to grow larger and larger. This sets up perfectly for the finishing combo of Card Destruction + Serial Spell, which will cause the opponent to draw 20 cards or more, ending the game in deckout. Additionally, you will not be at risk at decking yourself out as well, since Serial Spell discards your entire hand as a cost.
Empty Jar Deck Skeleton
1 Morphing Jar
1 Cyber Jar
1 Pot of Greed
1 Graceful Charity
1 Card Destruction
1 Serial Spell
2 Upstart Goblin
3 Spell Reproduction
3 Book of Taiyou
3 Book of Moon
3 The Shallow Grave
Empty Jar Example Decklists
Standard Empty Jar: https://www.duelingbook.com/deck?id=2833549
Empty Jar with Goats+Meta: https://www.duelingbook.com/deck?id=2833575
Strengths and Weaknesses of Empty Jar
Of the alternate win condition decks in the format, Empty Jar is one of the hardest ones to disrupt. The only commonly maindecked cards in the format that has stop its combo cold are Solemn Judgment, Raigeki Break, Phoenix Wing Wind Blast, Compulsory Evacuation Device, or Metamorphosis into Dark Balter the Terrible. Because there are so few ways to interact with the deck and the most popular decks are not very aggressive, Empty Jar will win the first game a high percentage of the time. If the opponent is not specifically siding for the deck, winning games 2 and 3 against a deck like Goat Control should be a piece of cake as well.
Empty Jar can struggle against many of the aggressive decks in the format, like Anti-Meta Warriors, due to their Solemn Judgments and hand disruption effects A slow hand is fine against Goat Control, but it is not fine when your opponent is summoning a beatstick every turn. Playing against Flip Control can also be frustrating sometimes due to how the deck can repeatedly recycle Solemn Judgment with Mask of Darkness.
Common Misconceptions About Empty Jar
Neko Mane King is a crucial sidedeck card against Empty Jar, but it is often woefully misunderstood. Generally speaking, it is the best single effect to shut down an Empty Jar combo, as it ends the turn immediately when discarded by a Morphing Jar or destroyed by a Cyber Jar. However, the Empty Jar player will always be looking to sidedeck counters to Neko Mane King; the most notable of these are Prohibition and Mind Control. When used correctly, each of these cards can be used to nullify Neko Mane King’s trigger effect, either by putting it on the Jar player’s side of the field for a Cyber Jar activation or by Prohibiting its effect from ever activating in the first place. This can make in-hand Neko Mane Kings more of a liability than an asset against the Jar player, leading to situations where a control player can be paradoxically punished for having too many Neko Mane Kings and not enough of other cards. Aggressive decks like Anti-Meta Warriors usually do not need to side Neko Mane King at all.
Empty Jar is sometimes classified as a first turn kill (FTK) deck, but in most matchups, the deck enjoys a remarkably lax amount of time in setting up its combo. Thus, a prudent Empty Jar player rarely goes for the FTK at all, instead opting to use the first few turns to ensure an extended combo.
You might also like...
Are you interested in winning in Goat Format with combo or alt-win decks? Check out these other deck guides: Here is a tournament report from a high-finishing Empty Jar player:
Do you have any questions about Empty Jar or want to share your own Empty Jar decklist? We’d love to hear from you in the comments. Want expert help to construct your own Empty Jar deck? Then join our Discord server.
Hall of Fame
Rogue Deck Spotlight