"Priority" is not a 4-letter-word. Our rules page has a great explanation of what exactly "priority" is and how it works, but the mechanic still trips up a lot of players in part due to misunderstandings about priority that continue to ripple throughout the Goat Format community. I will directly clear up each of the biggest misconceptions surrounding priority so that our players can all gain a more concrete understanding of this mysterious game mechanic.
Welcome back to our Introduction to Goat Format Power Cards series, in which we breakdown the basics behind how to best use (and counter) key power cards in Yu-Gi-Oh!'s Goat Format. Our last entry in the series covered Black Luster Soldier - Envoy of the Beginning, Morphing Jar, Heavy Storm, Snatch Steal, Mirror Force, and Torrential Tribute. This time we will be going over Tribe-Infecting Virus, Sinister Serpent, Graceful Charity, Delinquent Duo, and Ring of Destruction. We will analyze other power cards in the next installment of the series.
In Yu-Gi-Oh!, the sidedeck is traditionally used as a toolbox to help win specific matchups. Usually when you sidedeck, you will side in 2-6 cards and side out cards that do not work well for the matchup while not affecting your core strategy.
On the other hand, with transition sidedecking, you side in all fifteen cards from your sidedeck for fifteen core strategy cards from your main deck. This is fundamentally different from traditional sidedecking tactics, and it has its own risks and benefits.
In Goat Format, playable light monsters are significantly less plentiful than dark monsters are. Chaos decks are one of the main pillars of Yu-Gi-Oh!’s Goat Format, and one of the challenges involved in constructing a chaos deck is finding enough reliable sources of light monsters to fill your graveyard for Chaos Sorcerer. Here is a quick guide to all of the light monsters in the format that are considered fit for competitive play. They are roughly sorted from most to least popular. We excluded Black Luster Soldier - Envoy of the Beginning from the list, as it is itself a chaos monster.
Yu-Gi-Oh!'s Goat Format has a lot of minor deckbuilding decisions that are seemingly inconsequential but can make a substancial difference in terms of a player's long-term winrate. While the consensus current format deckbuilding theory dictates that one should play three of all the good cards in order to maximize the chances of seeing them quickly, that rule of thumb does not apply especially well to Goat Format. Why? The fact that Goat Format games can last 20 turns rather than a few changes things a lot. This can be confusing to less experienced players in the format. Playing 3 copies of a flip effect monster in Goat Format presents a significant risk: Nobleman of Crossout.
Chaos Sorcerer is more popular than ever in Yu-Gi-Oh!’s Goat Format, and Black Luster Soldier - Envoy of the Beginning is a near staple as well. However, players often give little thought regarding which battle position to summon their chaos monster in. Some players default to summoning their chaos monsters in defense because it’s what they see everyone else doing. However, the correct battle position is very dependent upon the gamestate and the matchup. These pros and cons will be summarized below.
One of the great things about the Yu-Gi-Oh! Goat Format is its low barrier to entry. Much of the Goat Format Community is online, where every card is free. If you are fortunate enough to be a part of a real-life Goat Format community, it's not too much worse. Decks can consistently be obtained for less than $100, and with a static card pool and banlist you don't have to worry about constantly having to buy new cards to keep up. However, this is a double-edged sword. A low barrier to entry also means a low barrier to exit. You may leave the format at any time without feeling very "pot committed."
Alt-win, burn, and combo, collectively known as the ABCs, maintain a significant presence in the online Yu-Gi-Oh! Goat Format meta. In most control decks, a large portion of the sidedeck, typically about 10 cards, is dedicated to countering these ABC decks. Having the tools to beat the ABC decks are essential to achieving a high winrate in the format. All of the best counters to each of these hazardous decks are listed below.
Two of the unique aspects of the Yu-Gi-Oh! Goat Format are the ubiquity of the card Metamorphosis and the fact that there is no legal limit on number of cards that you can play in the fusion deck (Yu-Gi-Oh! changed the term “fusion deck” to “extra deck” in 2008). Thus, making sure that you have included the correct fusion monsters in your fusion deck is an essential element of building any deck that includes Metamorphosis. Sorted below by level, we have listed every fusion monster that is a viable choice in Goat Format.
Something that makes the Yu-Gi-Oh! Goat Format unique is its diverse array of powerful cards that are limited to one per deck. On the surface, this might seem unappealing. Is it the case that whoever gets luckier and draws more power cards wins? It turns out that this is rarely the case. Like in poker, having good cards helps, but it’s more about how you use them. Knowing how to use power cards is a key step to transitioning from a beginner into a more knowledgeable Goat Format player.