It all comes down to this! Eerie shades of Day 1’s final match abounded as the finals pitted Jae Kim of Team Savage against Anthony Alvarado of Team Overdose. Rhymus Lizo called out Team Savage at SJC New Jersey, and now the entire main event came down to this: Savage versus Overdose!
“You can’t pass the bar!” yelled Rhymus from the sidelines, comically. “That’s Bryan, Anthony, and Rhymus! You can’t go to law school!” Lizo wasn’t even making sense, but it was funny.
Lizo and Kim exchanged opening pleasantries and rolled off, with Alvarado winning the die roll and opting to open game one.
Alvarado had a so-so opening hand. No trinity cards, nothing that maintained board presence, so he opened with Breaker and a face down spell or trap. Kim answered back with two face down cards to his spell/trap zone, a face down monster, and passed.
Alvarado flipped his face down Nobleman of Crossout from his zone, taking out Kim’s Magician of Faith. “That’s Rhymus’s favorite opening move,” said Alvarado, as Kim stripped one more Magician from his deck and Alvarado lost his pair. Breaker broke Kim’s rightmost face down spell or trap, and when it was revealed to be Book of Moon it was chained, but Alvarado flipped the Breaker right back up. He set a card to his spell or trap zone and then declined the opportunity to attack. It was four cards in Alvarado’s hand and two on field, to four in Kim’s hand and one on his field once Kim drew. Kim set a card to each of his zones and passed. He was playing oddly defensively for his style, and something seemed to be up.
Alvarado summoned Apprentice Magician and Kim flipped Torrential Tribute. Kim then flipped Dust Tornado and took out Alvarado’s Mirror Force. On his turn, Kim summoned Giant Rat and attacked directly for 1400.
Alvarado topdecked Pot of Greed, used Mystical Space Typhoon to get rid of Kim’s face down Creature Swap, and summoned Kycoo the Ghost Destroyer. He played Delinquent Duo, discarding Kim’s entire hand, including a Sinister Serpent. He then attacked, ripping Sinister Serpent out of Kim’s deck. Kim had nothing but a Pyramid tTurtle, and Alvarado played Swords of Revealing Light.
Kim topdecked Delinquent Duo, and used it immediately on Alvarado to bring his hand to zero as well. If Alvarado could destroy the Turtle without battling it, he’d be in trouble.
Alvarado couldn’t and passed. Kim set a card, and passed. Alvarado topdecked Tribe-Infecting Virus, used it, used its effect, and Kim flipped Ring of Destruction to take down Kycoo. It was academic, though—play had gone down to topdecking, and Alvarado had rebuilt his field faster. Tribe-Infecting Virus smacked Kim for 1600, and next turn the game was over.
Game one goes to Team Overdose’s Anthony Alvarado!
Both players took their time side decking, and Kim explained a few of the moves he’d intended, like the Creature Swap he’d briefly bluffed on intending to swap over a self-replacing monster (like Pyramid Turtle or Giant Rat). He wasn’t visibly losing his cool at all, and Alvarado showed twinges of both nerves and excitement. Whatever the outcome, this match would reward a team that had not yet claimed a Cyber-Stein with a copy of the coveted card. Thrilling.
“Good luck” said Kim. “I’ll go first.”
He opened with a set card to each of his zones, and didn’t flinch for a moment when Alvarado played Pot of Greed as his first move. He also didn’t show visible signs of worry when Delinquent Duo hit as Alvarado’s second move. It cost Kim Dust Tornado first, then Mystical Space Typhoon. “That’s fine,” said Kim as he dropped the Mystical Space Typhoon—either he had another, or he was gambling hard.
D. D. Assailant came down on Alvarado’s side. Nobleman of Crossout removed Kim’s face down Magician of Faith from the game, and both players again searched their decks for the other copies. “That’s fine,” said Kim again. Both players exchanged decks for shuffling, and the Assailant attacked.
It was four cards in Alvarado’s hand to Kim’s two, and both had one card on the field. Alvarado set a spell or trap and passed. Kim set another spell or trap and passed. Alvarado tributed for Mobius, destroyed Kim’s two face down spell or traps, and Kim chained Torrential Tribute. Kim set two more spells next turn, and Alvarado fired back with Breaker, attacking. Kim hit it with Book of Moon, and next turn tried to attack it with Mystic Swordsman LV2. It ate a Ring of Destruction, and next turn Alvarado attacked with Breaker, scoring a hit. The score was 5300 to 3800 for Alvarado. He then played Swords of Revealing Light, another blow to Kim.
Mobius came back up with Premature Burial, Alvarado set a monster, and attacked with Mobius. This could be it. “Sure, I’ll take it,” said Kim. Breaker then attacked, and Kim used Book of Moon to keep it off his back.
Kim drew—he had two spell or traps set and set a third, rubbing his hands together. Alvarado flip summoned Breaker, attacked with it and Kim checked his face down cards. One by one he checked each, and upon the third, looked at Alvarado. “That’s game.” Kim had no responses, Breaker swung in, and the game was ended.
Kris Perosovic, Rhymus Lizo, and other members of Team Overdose burst through the barricade around the feature match area, and tackled Alvarado with hugs! Anthony Alvarado is your newest SJC Champion!
This article was originally written by Metagame.com, what was formerly the official website for large Yu-Gi-Oh! tournament coverage. It has been preserved by GoatFormat.com so that players can learn from this historical tournament coverage.