Plant your counters and embrace the predator vines.
After releasing a Gimmick Puppet article following the launch of LD5, there was significant outcry for the need to tend to our carnivorous garden, so let’s dig into this unique Fusion theme. To quote my previous article involving the Predaplants: “it is Fusion-based without a good way to recover card investments… and no in-theme Fusion options saved you card advantage.” Being upfront I still feel like this is the case with the theme today, but the new support tackles this issue by providing unique strategies for the archetype.
In this vein, I want to address the benefit of Pure Predaplant over the many different variations that have previously existed to give the theme some legs: The new support has pushed this archetype to go all-in on its unique disruption capabilities. This is the way I’m presenting the archetype in this article, so hopefully you come away from this seeing that point of view. Whether it is disrupting levels, tributing your opponents monsters for inherent summons, or Fusion summoning with your opponents resources – the bottom line up front is that Predaplant bring unique options to the table. So let’s discuss how to exploit that.
A Unique Garden:
The new support (and core of the pure theme) begins with the centerpiece of this disruption strategy, Predaplanning. To activate this Trap, you must first send a Predaplant from your deck to the GY, then all face-up monsters on the field get a Predator Counter (PC) to drop their levels to 1. This combos quite nicely with the other trap card for theme, Predaplanet. Whenever a monster with a PC leaves the field, you get to search a “Predap” card. This can occur when your opponent Link Summons, or if they just successfully remove your monster from the field. This gives you the search power you need to get all of your combo pieces.
But what happens if your opponent doesn’t want to remove any cards from the field? Then just tribute them away, because it’s about time we introduce our in-theme Kaiju. First, Predaplant Drosophyllum Hydra can be summoned to your field from your hand or GY by tributing one of your opponent’s monsters with a PC. Remember that you had to send a Predaplant to GY to activate planning? Yes, you should send this… always. The second option is Predaplant Banksiogre, the only tuner for the theme, but it also can Special summon itself (only from your hand) by tributing an opponent’s monster with a PC.
Besides these unique options, predaplant are supported by a strong core suite of effects. Whether it is summoning from the Deck, searching additional Predaplant cards, or even additional inherent summons – this theme has plenty of cool cards. But this wouldn’t be a Predaplant article without talking about their Win Condition – Fusion Summoning.
Predaplants may be more known for their splashable nature, with Predaplant Darlingtonia Cobra searching Super Polymerization or Brilliant Fusion, but they have so many intheme ways to Fusion summon. Whether it is the ignition effect of their Predaplant Chlamydosundew (which can even fuse using your opponent’s monsters with PC), good old Polymerization and Super Polymerization, their intheme Predaprime Fusion, or the GY effect of Predaplanet, this deck should always have access to its fusions. This variety of effects (not all tied to spells), gives the theme a way to get in the fight even if your opponent throws up significant disruption that you can’t happen to tribute away.
Anyways, I feel like it’s time to step off my soapbox for introducing the archetype, so let’s dive into the decklist, shall we?
A Plant Deck without Lonefire:
Yes, I never thought I’d see the day either where I would suggest running a plant archetype without Lonefire Blossom… but here we are. As I said earlier, the reason you would want to use this theme is to abuse its unique effects that no other archetype offers – if you’d rather run a streamlined plant build, Aromage is probably the better archetype to look into. But the primary reason I strongly suggest you don’t run any Lonefire is their new Spell card from LD5 – Predapractice. First, it summons a Predaplant from your hand, then it lets you search any other “Predap” card from your deck. In other words, this card gets you an extra Pred to the field, and a free Predap to replace itself. I really hope you see the power here, because this card provides the synergy of running Predaplants and it’s standout way of playing the Fusion gameplan.
Unlike many other Fusion themes, Predaplant does not have the luxury of just throwing monsters together and gaining advantage off of the Fusion summon. We aren’t playing Shadolls, we don’t have insane draw power like Fluffal, we don’t have endless combo strings like HERO… at the end of the day, you have to be specific and intentional with how you fusion summon. If you are going to use specific monsters as material, you want to make the most out of them first. Clearly one of the best opening turn plays is using Orthys Scorpio to summon Darlington Cobra which then searches out a Super Poly, so, why not make that play first without using your Normal Summon? The secondary advantage is that Practice will often soak an Ash Blossom before you have to discard for Scorpio, so you still make it out in card advantage.
So let’s return to my initial point – why no Lonefire? Well, you can’t use Practice if you just draw into a Lonefire, but you can if you draw into any Predaplant monster. Also, with the rise in popularity of Nibiru, the deck thinning Lonefire brings is not necessarily as attractive when your opponent is sitting back counting summons.
Other Strategic Elements:
As you may have guessed from my introduction, this theme thrives when you play around Pred Counters. So let’s give a short explanation of how you can take advantage beyond just its level reduction. First, Predaplant Spinodionaea can summon another Predaplant from the deck whenever it battles a monster of lower level, which will be guaranteed if that opponent’s monster has a Pred Counter. Also, note that Ash cannot be used during the damage step to stop your Spinodionaea, so that is a perfect time to get a Orthys Scorpio combo going undeterred. Another option is to just park a Predaplant Flytrap on the field with your Practice, as if you search planning, you can guarantee that it quickly becomes a threat your your opponents non-Link monsters.
The last big unique thing that Predaplant bring to the table is an intheme hand trap for the battle phase – Predaplant Sarracenient. With the heavy board-clearing options available to today’s modern game, there will oftentimes be many opponents that wipe your field then go for game. Most decks have to rely on just stopping their plays with a hand trap, but Predaplant have a different option – Sarracenient can block one of your opponent’s important attacks… and if your opponent chooses to continue attacking anyways, Sarracenient’s second effect destroys your opponents monster… then when it is destroyed, it lets you add any Preda card from your deck to hand. In short, it is both a defensive tech that sports disruption while searching the card(s) you need to fight back on your next turn. Oh, and it’s also one of your prime Fusion materials, since it also can gain its search when used from the field.
Going for Game:
The last piece of the Predaplant puzzle is understanding their win condition. Before LD5, Predaplant entirely relied on getting a lucky Super Polymerization opportunity, then hoping to win the duel from there. Nowadays, we keep that in the back pocket, but we also have a brand new boss, Predaplant Triphyoverutum. You may have taken an initial look at him for Super Poly plays against DARK decks, but take a look again now that you understand that Pred Counters can actually be easily spread – he is an OTK option that can reach very high ATK levels, especially if your opponent had invested in a significant monster prescience.
The last win condition available to the deck is a grind game, just slowly draining your opponent of all resources. This type of gameplan revolves around the GY recovery options – Predapruning and Predaponics. Both seem similar, reviving a Predaplant monster, but the beauty is that Ponics can revive a monster every single turn. That means as soon as you get your first Ponics, you are pretty much guaranteed to have at least one fusion material every single turn. Sure, it comes with an 800LP per turn price tag, but when has LP costs ever stopped anyone from running a card? This gives you surprising longevity, as if you keep reviving your Sarracenient, you also get to rebuild your hand presence one “Predap” at a time.
- Plant Support
- Lonefire Blossom – Yes, I know I gave reasons for not running it, but you technically still have the option to run this card, as getting any Plant to your field can be amazing.
- Frozen Rose & Mind Control – This combination of tech options is a slick combo that can give your strategy a bit more non-destruction removal. It’s best to pair with Mind Control, just because you get the possibility of getting a Plant search more often.
- Pollinosis – Plant-type negation option, can work with the Predaplant you summon with Practice to get your initial search.
- Mark of the Rose – Snatch Steal anyone? In coinflip situations, this card can help you come back to steal a victory from the clutches of defeat.
- Alternate Fusion Engines
- Edge Imp – Prior to the LD5 support, a common way of running Predaplant was to use Edge Imp Chain, Edge Imp Sabres, and Frightfur Patchwork to ensure a steady stream of DARK fusion materials. As I explained earlier, I think the theme has evolved enough with good support to move away from this crutch, but it still is an option for fusion-heavy builds that don’t want to take advantage of the unique Predaplant plays.
- Thunder Dragon Titan, Vision HERO Trinity, Borreload Furious Dragon, Chimeratech Rampage Dragon – All of these Fusion monsters are tech options to use in your Extra since you are maining 3 Super Polymerization.
- Invoked – As the new support can use Practice to avoid the Normal Summon, you can now use Invocation to gain access to some other Fusion monsters.
- Ultra Polymerization – This is a great Fusion spell for themes needing to reuse fusion materials for multiple summons. The downside to this is the LP cost, but there is a second issue nowadays in the link era – you need to have summoned a Link monster first if you want to use this to go for a second fusion summon.
- DARK support
- Dark Armed Dragon – Gaining from the new F&L list, you can consider running himn in here due to the high number of DARKs and the significant GY control due to Hydra’s GY effect.
- Allure of Darkness – You could choose to cut down on the number of copies of certain support cards to run more draw power instead.
- Orcust Engine – I can’t believe I’m saying this, but the Orcust engine can work in Predaplant, since they can all be the DARK monster in your Fusion summon. If you use Chimera as a link Material, you get to search a Super Polymerization for your next turn in case your field is overrun, so there is a benefit there, but make sure you save Practice for last since it locks you into Fusion summoning!
Notes on the new Predaplant Link:
For those of you who have not yet seen the OCG news about LVP3, the Predaplant archetype is receiving a Link monster! Click here to access our recent article on it! But as it stands, it is completely generic, and really cannot be exploited as well for Predaplant as it can for other archetypes such as Red-Eyes or Neos. The one thing that this link would unlock would be the ability to run Shaddoll as a fusion engine in parallel with the deck, as Winda could quickly become accessible as an additional disruption option for an opening turn. But I will leave it to your judgment as to how you can best utilize this new support moving forward!
Predaplant offers some unique effects that simply don’t grow anywhere else in the game. This Plant theme weaves such potent disruption, annoyance, and search power into a really neat web of effects, all fused together with a Polymerization cherry on top. As a result, it takes full dedication to the archetype’s cards and support options to get the most out of the archetype, which is what this article was intended to be all about! Anyways, thanks for reading this TCG article, and I’ll see you next time. No promises on my next article, but it’s currently a toss-up between making T.G. work for the TCG or an OCG article revisiting the archetype which still holds the record for number of views on this site for one of my articles.
Reminder, I also take suggestions for future CDS articles! I really want to see some input from you! Fun fact, this article was specifically requested by a reader through Discord! If you wish to see a CDS article about the archetype, theme, or strategy you love, feel free to private message me on the YGOrg Discord server, the YGOrganization Forums, or just post a comment in response to this article on our Facebook page with your ideas to keep under consideration. This article was requested across all three of those in addition to multiple Facebook PMs, so I hope this shows that I really do take requests! On most YGO-related communities my username is Quincymccoy, so feel free to reach out.