Overlord has returned to relevancy and has been causing more of a ruckus than usual.
With a brand new game plan involving forcing the opponent to play at 5 damage and near unrivalled pressure it is not hard to see why the deck is being called by some the best in the format.
Further propelled upward by Kagero’s amazing G-guard options and some of the most efficient beatsticks around. The deck not only boasts power within the set-13 format but excellent longevity thanks to its amazing versatility.
As a long time fan of the deck I am more than pleased with the new form it has taken. Taking the signature pressure the deck has always tried to maintain and taking it up a notch while increasing the efficiency and range of its removal options.
So a whole year on since my last Overlord profile I’m excited to share with you the newest incarnation of an old favourite.
Same as always I’ll go into detail about each lineup after giving the list but this time I think there’s a clear cut way to handle triggers and an even more obvious starter so I will be including them.
Grade 0 – 17
- Lizard Soldier, Conroe x 1
- Inspire Yell Dragon x 3/4
- Fire Chase Dragon x 4
- Gatling Claw Dragon x 4
- Dragon Dancer, Tara x 4
- Seal Dragon, Artpique x 0/1
Grade 1 – 12/13
- Lizard General, Conroe x 4
- Lava Flow Dragon x 1/2
- Protect Orb Dragon x 4 (PG)
- Tech slots x 3
Grade 2 – 12
- Emperor Dragon Knight, Nehalem x 4
- Burning Horn Evolute x 4
- Glow Heater Dragon x 4
Grade 3 – 8/9
- Dragonic Overlord “The Destiny” x 4
- Dragonic Overlord the End x 2/3/4
- Dragonic Overlord “The X” x 0/2/3
- Supreme Heavenly Emperor Dragon, Accend Grave Dragon x 1
- Supreme Heavenly Emperor Dragon, Dragonic Overlord “The Purge x 3
- Supreme Heavenly Emperor Dragon, Dragonic Overlord “the Ace” x 2/3
- Flare Arms, Ziegenburg x 3/4
- Flame Wing Steel Beast, Denial Griffin x 2/3
- Supreme Heavenly Emperor Dragon, Defeat Flare Dragon x 1
- Divine Dragon Knight, Abd Salam x 1
- Tech Slots x 2
Starting off we have the forerunner for the deck (or the whole clan for that matter) none other than the amazing Conroe.
I don’t think I really need to explain this choice but I will anyway. Conroe offers more utility than almost any other card in the game everything from securing stride to ride fixing, if it involves a grade 1 or less Conroe guarantees it will happen.
Arguments for other starters don’t hold water by the sheer fact that Conroe can search them out if you really wanted, but why would you. Other Kagero starters often lack wider utility and aim to achieve results other cards in the deck already do.
But that’s a talk for another day lets talk about triggers.
Well to start with we have some pretty standard stuff 4 heals and 4 of an effect critical.
Tara is one of the unsung heroes of this deck, adding free value to every G-guard you use or even just refunding the cost of them. Tara is an excellent addition especially in a more greedy deck like this one.
Fire chase is the choice of critical for the deck mostly because there’s not a whole lot of reason to run any other crits. It offers occasional utility against resist units or even just a helping hand to enable Ziegs free restand.
From there we have a standard Kagero staple, the starter sniping Gatling Claw Dragon. An excellent way to disrupt power plays or even just relieve some early game pressure.
Finally the most interesting pick here is the inclusion of stands.
Before getting into the merit of yell itself I want to explain why stands. Stands are more effective than criticals when the opponent is at 5 damage, a scenario the deck can guarantee via Purge. Coupled with the extra drive checks increasing consistency of hitting them, stands are incredibly potent in this deck.
So why yell?
Inspire yell is by far the most useful effect stand in Kagero, it returns to the deck, replaces itself, gives power and has an easy and incredibly useful timing. From enabling blaze to powering up rears Yell not only offers utility but turns almost every card in your deck into a beater while even increasing your chance of hitting a stand. Yell is especially useful in the mirror where you may want to finish with an empty board on your Zieg turn.
You can even use him as an early beater and return it to deck on your stride turn.
Again pretty standard we have orb and grade 1 Conroe at 4.
Orb is simply the best perfect guard Kagero has available offering CC to a greedy clan, compared to the other options of Dumjid and Rias there isn’t much competition.
General Conroe is a card that is always relevant and having a consumable skill means that more copies never hurts. You are very likely to lose games you don’t see Conroe so increasing the chance of seeing him without using your starter is definitely a plus.
Lava flow is at 2 if you run 8 grade 3s or 1 if you run 9, no need for explanation here consistency is always a good thing.
The we have our tech slots.
The first pick here is Doom Bringer Highflame
Highflame allows you to more freely use your Ovelords as fodder for skills or strides and is supplemented by G1 Conroe. Using this card to get a draw is really important since it gives you effectively a free unit or even stride as Kagero lacks any real way to rejuvenate field outside of calling from hand.
Your second option is definitely a meta dependant one in Lizard Soldier, Bellog.
In the event you end up swimming in Deletors or Time leap makes a come back swap out the Highflames for Bellog but other than that I think Highflame is the go to.
This is really simple 4 of each so that you can consistently beat on your opponent. It’s really just icing that they offer some great utility too.
Evolute and Glow Heater make up the decks early game and later become dedicated beatsticks that synergise with purge.
Evolute offers cheap and effective early game push back by retiring a unit for a single soul. While Glow gives you a defensive body to help you remain in charge of the games early pace. If your opponent commits a board early to try and get ahead of you Evolute and Glow should be able to put them right back in their place.
Nehalem has reduced early utility but creates easy columns on your non Overlord turns and is incredibly potent with Ziegenburg.
We have our obvious main grade 3 being the Destiny, Destiny gives you 2 retires per turn with one offering a search and another the ability to hit resist or locked cards.
Destiny is the decks main ride, offering increased consistency for both skills and striding via its search and more options for tearing cards from the opponents hand. Overlord finally getting its strider is a long overdue boon and a welcome addition to the deck.
It’s hard to argue against free value.
From there we come to a point of contention that I think there is a clear cut answer to.
When it comes to grade 3s in Overlord the selection is pretty wide but most people have quite rightfully narrowed it down to 2 options, X/End or the Legend. As you can pretty clearly see in the list I fall into the X/End camp. My reasoning for this is that in the event that you don’t see Destiny thanks to G0 and G1 Conroe as long as you see a G3 you can get the Overlord you need. While there is an argument to be made that the Legend is better in the situation you need to top deck a G3 but as you run 8-9 G3s this is a fairly rare issue.
As a result I believe you should opt for the utility offered by either End alone or the legion pair.
So now onto the ratios there’s a few ways to approach it, the first is the most simple, 4 Destiny and 4 End. This ratio is for more aggressive metagames where you’re likely to see stall or fast decks. This ratio gives you the highest chance to be able to punish with DOTE. I personally found success here but found that it often put me in difficult situations if games went longer.
As a result my next ratio was 4 Destiny 3 X and 2 End. This is a lineup I’ve seen fairly often in Japanese lists and it’s the most deckout proof maximising the utility of the X while somewhat forgoing the End’s solo abilities. In my personal testing this worked totally fine but I did feel that losing out on the more consistent End threat wasn’t worth the slightly more consistent legion loop.
So my final lineup was 4 Destiny 3 End and 2 X I’ve personally liked this lineup the best since I think it gives me the most coverage in terms of utility without losing out on too much.
On the subject of grade 3 counts I’ve definitely preferred 9 as it give me some extra consistency for named costs and the downside is mostly negated by Conroe. That said 8 also works just fine but can lead to more of a squeeze if you want both of the legion pair in there.
And finally we reach the G-zone and again its fairly straightforward. Set in stone for strides we have 1 copy of Accend, 3 copies of Purge, 2 Ace and 3 Ziegenburg. These ratios basically guarantee you won’t ever be lacking options or be hurting for flip costs.
Accend is here as striding Purge when the opponent is at less than 3 damage is usually pretty poor so getting the extra card is more important there.
I think 3 copies is the perfect sweet spot for Purge as you will usually only need 1 or 2 but in the event that the opponent heals you can hit them right back into the red zone. Purge is key to the decks gameplan of increasing pressure by forcing the opponent into uncomfortable damage numbers. It also offers excellent tempo thanks to its increased drive checks, which will also help to increase rearguard pressure.
From there Zieg and Ace make up our restanders, Zieg offers more tempoish restands with his discardless attack while Ace allows Glow and Evolute to retain their extra power. In general you probably want to be Zieging but Ace can often make a more potent finisher, Destiny helps to not only secure its cost but also mitigate the discard.
Zieg is at 3 since he is more likely to be used and requires no flip for the restand but having access to his retire is a nice option to have.
Ace is at 2 due to it having less utility pretty much being a pure finisher.
Your flexibility here is whether you want a 4th copy of Zieg or a 3rd Ace. 4th Zieg is a pretty safe option giving you more access to the retire skill whereas Ace opens up the first stride Ace play. This slot is mostly unimportant as it will more than likely be flipped to Purge but I personally opt for 3 Ace as the first stride restand can be relevant in more aggressive games.
Moving onto G-guards we have the obvious stuff of at least 2 Griffin, 1 Defeat flare and 1 Abd Salam, this covers the bulk of defensive options you might want.
Griffin speaks for itself having virtually infinite shield power to any rear and being almost unrivalled in its combo disruption.
Defeat creates the threat of a huge blowout and potential to gain effective shield by retiring boosters while also bypassing just about any defensive methods your opponents rearguards might have.
Abd is the primary defensive G-guard being able to block just about any attack on all but a full field.
From there we have out 2 G-zone tech slots and the options here are another Griffin or Abd, a copy of Advance Guard, Asyl orb or Drachma.
Upping the ratios of your other guards gives you more options defensively, normally I would recommend going to 3 Griffins but in a guard restrict heavy meta a second Abd is a nice safety net. If you want more of a counter to Nightrose, Advance Guard is your go to, allowing you to snipe Bones before they enable extra attacks. In resist heavy playing fields Asyl is an excellent option for saving you shield when your griffins are vanilla.
Changing up your G-guard lineup to deal with threats you expect to see is something you definitely want to take advantage of so keep in mind the excellent options the deck has access to.
For the final option we have the one and only Zeroth Dragon of Inferno, Drachma.
Drachma offers another potential finish option with a serious drawback but potential lasting effect. Its rare that Drachma will be the correct play but starting your big finish turn by knocking 3 cards out of the opponents hand can often help deal with situations where you know your opponent has a lot of defensive options. In general you probably won’t ever need Drachma but it has some potential utility that can’t be ignored so it’s worth keeping it in mind. The draw back of ultimate stride is also somewhat mitigated by the End but keep in mind if your opponent is able to recover easily via striding Drachma is often far too risky a play to consider.
Once again we reach the end
One year on Overlord makes a comeback not only as Kagero’s flagship build but as one of the key metagame threats. Even if you aren’t playing this deck knowledge of it is basically required to compete. Constantly attacking the opponents resources while forcing them to play with every hit potentially the last creates an incredibly high pressure deck that a large portion of the game simply can’t deal with.
Personally I’m loving the gameplay of this deck and I’m eager to see how it contends with future metagame threats.
~ Thanks for reading and happy new year