If you have just started playing Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Links and you are looking at the Shop, wondering where to start, you might be overwhelmed by how many different packs are currently available. This game has recently celebrated its 2nd anniversary and right now the Shop features 16 Mini BOXes and 17 Main BOXes; investing into every single one of these is definitely not advised as the vast majority contain outdated cards and/or archetypes that are not viable anymore, so in this guide I will try and direct you towards the ones that feature cards that are currently relevant.
For starters, let’s talk about some of the most popular cards in the game right now—mostly Spell and Trap Cards that can fit in pretty much any deck. These cards have proven to be a great investment for many players by remaining relevant for a very long time and should be one of your primary foci, if you have just started playing the game.
|The cards are sorted by Type and Rarity|
|DARK Fiend ★1|
ATK 300 / DEF 200
|The Ultimate Rising [UR]|
|When an opponent's monster declares an attack: You can send this card from your hand to the Graveyard; change the attacking monster to Defense Position. When you Ritual Summon a monster, you can banish this card from your Graveyard as 1 of the monsters required for the Ritual Summon.|
A Hand Trap that is able to prevent OTKs; Sphere Kuriboh has managed to stay mostly relevant ever since its introduction.
Generic backrow removal; Cosmic Cyclone’s activation cost has great synergy with a lot of Skills.
Versatile Quick-Play Spell that can be used to protect your monsters and/or your Life Points or to take control of an opponent’s monster. Enemy Controller is currently Semi-Limited.
Spell Card that bounces Set Spell/Trap Cards back into their controller’s hand; Hey, Trunade! can enable a lot of OTKs. This card is currently Semi-Limited.
Trap Card that’s generally used to slow down the opponent by locking a monster that has just been Summoned in face-down Defense Position.
|Valiant Souls [UR]|
|Target 1 face-up monster your opponent controls; change it to face-down Defense Position. Once per Chain, when a Trap Card is activated while this card is in your Graveyard: Special Summon this card as a Normal Monster (Aqua-Type/WATER/Level 2/ATK 1200/DEF 0). (This card is NOT treated as a Trap Card.) If Summoned this way, this card is unaffected by monster effects, also banish it when it leaves the field.|
Similar to Floodgate Trap Hole, Paleozoic Canadia can flip monsters face-down, but it’s more versatile and it has an additional effect that allows you to Special Summon it from the Graveyard as Level 2 monster.
A Trap Card with a minor activation requirement and the ability to destroy two monsters on the field. Treacherous Trap Hole is currently Semi-Limited.
A powerful Battle Trap that can punish the opponent for swarming the field.
“Koa'ki Meiru” has recently received the best piece of support it could have ever asked for: Diamond Core of Koa'ki Meiru. Having significantly improved in both consistency and durability, this deck has completely taken over the ladder and we honestly think it’s a good investment for any new player. You can start by investing in Gaia Genesis—that’s where you will find most of the cards you need to build this deck—and then move on to Revolution Beginning to get a set of Diamond Core of Koa'ki Meiru.
Despite the rise of Koa'ki Meirus, Vampires are still one of the best decks around: they are fast and consistent, they have searchers in the form of Vampire Retainer and Vampire Familiar that can give them access to pretty much the entirety of archetype, they have removal in the form of Vampire Kingdom and they can take advantage of Treacherous Trap Hole, Enemy Controller and/or Hey, Trunade! without having to take out key cards, unlike Masked HEROes
One of the things that really sets Vampires apart from other decks is how well they are able to handle removal thanks to Gozuki and Samurai Skull: these two monsters can potentially float into another one when they are destroyed and leave the field respectively, taking out a lot of value from cards like Treacherous Trap Hole and Spellbook of Fate.
As I said at the beginning, Vampires were “nearly” untouched by the Banlist and that is because all decks suffered from Treacherous Trap Hole and Hey, Trunade! being Semi-Limited, except for Spellbook, but that shouldn’t take anything away from this deck.
Ancient Gear Awakening, the recently released Structure Deck EX, has had a huge impact on the meta: a brand new competitive deck has entered the scene, quickly overpowering the competition.
Building a Geartown Turbo Deck without purchasing at least a second copy of Ancient Gear Awakening is unfortunately pretty difficult, but the value you are going to get from it is undeniably pretty high, especially if you are a new player. Stacking up Gems takes time, but purchasing packs, even during a sale, is ridiculously expensive; Ancient Gear Awakening offers an almost already playable deck for a much lower price.
Blue-Eyes didn’t make the cut for the previous version of the New Player Guide, but that was before The White Dragon of Legend Structure Deck was released; Blue-Eyes is very strong and consistent, being able to get out on the field multiple 2500+ ATK monsters on the board very quickly, so we don’t see a reason why it shouldn’t be recommended to new players.
Which packs should a new player open first? This is the question I want to answer in this section.
While there are certainly a lot of great cards in almost every single one of these BOXes, not all of them are currently relevant: a certain card or even a whole archetype might become very good in the future, but what I will mention here are mostly the ones that are staples in current meta decks and cards that are extremely versatile in general.
In order to properly understand how important these cards are, I will assign each one of them a number that represents the priority a player should give to them from 1 to 3 (1 being high priority and likely relevant in the current meta and 3 low priority and not currently relevant, but worth mentioning because of its versatility).
The Ultimate Rising
|Sphere Kuriboh |
|Mirror Wall |
|Little to no value.|
|Gozuki , Buster Blader, the Dragon Destroyer Swordsman , Dark Paladin , Buster Blader |
|Little to no value.|
|Samurai Skull , Floodgate Trap Hole |
|Cosmic Cyclone |
|Little to no value.|
|Ties of the Brethren , Citadel Whale , Sea Stealth Attack |
|Paleozoic Canadia , Vision HERO Witch Raider , Masked HERO Anki , Mask Change |
|D.D. Assailant |
|Evocator Chevalier |
|Galaxy Cyclone , Drowning Mirror Force , Koa'ki Meiru Maximus , Koa'ki Meiru Sandman , Koa'ki Meiru Urnight , Koa'ki Meiru Ice , Iron Core of Koa'ki Meiru , Dark Valkyria , Gemini Spark , U.A. Midfielder , U.A. Stadium , U.A. Penalty Box , U.A. Dreadnought Dunker , U.A. Mighty Slugger , U.A. Rival Rebounder |
|Stardust Dragon , XX-Saber Fulhelmknight , XX-Saber Hyunlei , XX-Saber Boggart Knight , X-Saber Souza , Saber Slash , Silver's Cry , Azure-Eyes Silver Dragon ,The White Stone of Legend , Genex Undine , Protector with Eyes of Blue |
|Breaker the Magical Warrior , Cards of Consonance , Dragunity Knight - Vajrayana , Dragunity Dux , Dragunity Phalanx , Dragunity Militum , Dragunity Aklys , Dragunity Divine Lance |
|Karakuri Shogun mdl 00 "Burei" , Karakuri Komachi mdl 224 "Ninishi" , Karakuri Merchant mdl 177 "Inashichi" , Karakuri Soldier mdl 236 "Nisamu" , Karakuri Cash Cache , Karakuri Anatomy , Diamond Core of Koa'ki Meiru |
|Available card boxes|