Casual Deck Strategy: Synchro Genius

Welcome to my next CDS article, and this week, we are going to be discussing a theme that never really got its time in the spotlight for what it was intended. I’m sure you’ve guessed it by now, but the Tech Genus monsters never caught on for a variety of reasons; mostly that the Synchro era was fast ending and the Xyz era was right around the corner. But for this very reason, the Tech Genus archetype was given a ton of power in Synchro Summoning; it was literally ‘the’ archetype to end Synchro archetypes with a bang. Let’s dive into the inner workings of a T.G. deck…

Background and an Introduction to the Archetype:

Tech Genus is an anime-originating archetype that was used by Antimony in the Yugioh 5D’s anime. As with most archetypes of the 5Ds era, every single one of its cards was used in the anime at some point; no exclusives or even cards created just for the TCG/OCG were ever released, even in the wake of all of this anime-archetype support out of the Japanese WPs in the main sets. Much to my dismay, it doesn’t even seem like we will be getting the last two T.G. monsters used in the anime anytime soon. Yes, that’s right. There ARE more T.G. monsters that were never released! See Drill Fish and Gear Zombie for more information.

But before I can discuss any impact either of those would have on the deck, I first have to introduce what the deck DOES have at its disposal, and that is unparalleled Level 5 Synchro capability. Each of the 6 currently-released T.G. monsters has a friend, a friend who enables that monster to reach its best Synchro capability. The catch is that both monsters’ Levels add up to 5. So essentially, if you are new to the Synchro-based view of the archetype, you are looking to abuse these pairs and get them into your hand whenever possible. While Synchro Summoning was simply an extra feature of the T.G. Stun decks that quickly rose into popularity, pure T.G. is downright the best archetype in the game at Special Summoning Level 5 Synchros. This is simply because it is a combo-based archetype, where each of its members searches another piece of the puzzle.

And how could we talk about the T.G. without discussing its most important feature? Each of the 4 ‘core’ T.G. monsters has the ability, at the end of a turn in which it was destroyed, to add another T.G. monster from the Deck to the hand. In other words, if you have 2 T.G. monsters in your hand, simply sending one out to die will guarantee that you get your 2-piece Synchro combo ready for your next turn. While it is true that you don’t get to add a new T.G. when you use one in a Synchro Summon, the fact of the matter is that you simply don’t have to. Once you Synchro Summon, you are covering your bases; giving yourself a leg up for the next turn. Sure, you can sit and search T.G. monsters all day, but that alone won’t win you the duel. So to win, the main strategy of a T.G. deck is simple: Search for your synchro combos, then execute. And all of this is contained just within their monsters, they have a solid spell and trap lineup just to augment their already powerful arsenal!

The Kings of Advantage:

While you may be familiar with this aspect of the T.G. monsters already, this deck takes the title extremely seriously, especially in an evolving metagame. What’s truly interesting, at least to me, is that T.G. Synchro variants have actually rose in popularity now in comparison to back when they were released. While part of that is due to better Synchro-deck options in the past and somewhat is due to having a lot less generic, yet powerful trap options, but most of all, it’s due to one powerful newly-released Spell Card… That’s right, I’m talking about Supply Unit.

Supply Unit  offsets any losses in advantage by any card you use to manually destruct your T.G. monsters to get their effects. And yet, most of the time you will be using cards that are already a break-even or plus in advantage. Cards such as Torrential Tribute and Needle Ceiling really take the cake in a T.G. deck. While T.G.’s don’t love destruction nearly as much as their Fire King counterparts, they have a greater versatility in how you can win. Versatility, the ability to adjust your gameplan, is really one of the most important qualities of a deck in this emerging post-DUEA meta. Whether it is the tellarknights’ ability to rely upon either Alpha or the Extra Deck to guarantee victory, or the Shaddolls’ ability to run a variety of different tech options, Decks need to be able to adapt to the situation at hand. And you know what? T.G. has an awesome toolbox of Synchro Monsters to choose from.

But before we get into all that nitty gritty of what you CAN summon, we should talk about how you are going to Summon. If you remember, I mentioned earlier that the T.G. deck hinges upon combos of 2 monsters to make their Level 5 Synchros. If only there was a card to instantly set up a combo… Oh wait, there is:

Generation Shift Normal Trap Target 1 face-up monster you control; destroy that target, then add 1 card with the same name as the destroyed card from your Deck to your hand.

Meet the card that never really got played in the T.G. stun variant. While this card may seem quite stupid, trading a monster on the field for a new copy of it to the hand at a -1, you can definitely abuse this card with the T.G. monsters. Simply add another copy of the destroyed monster now, then add a copy of its Synchro partner during the End Phase. Tada, you got one Synchro combo ready to go. And if you have Supply Unit face-up…. that’s another +1, and you still haven’t dug into your Extra Deck. Wondering why Konami would put so much advantage-focus into an older archetype? Every single Synchro Summon is an inherent -1 at minimum, because you are trading 2 monsters for 1. While it was meaningful at the beginning of the Synchro era, as powerful boss monsters weren’t the easiest to come by, the ability to mitigate the -1 from the Synchro Summon became key. For example, Blackwings got Blizzard and Whirlwind, each which considerably cut down the costs of a Synchro Summon. Warp Psychics were the final evolution of this, regaining the advantage after the Synchro Summon, but while Psychics regained the advantage after the Synchro, T.G. were designed to gain it before the Synchro. Quite frankly, this was the reason why you saw T.G. stun decks and not Psychic stun decks, as you could just stop after gaining advantage and not Synchro if you didn’t want to.

So we’ve talked about the advantage power before the Synchro. The Synchro Monsters themselves provide the advantage after the Synchro Summon, but what happens after that Synchro Monster is destroyed, and all your work put into its summoning goes up in flames? I’ll give you three guesses. Yeah, let’s gain some more advantage by recycling back the materials! The main design weakness of the T.G. would be that they can run you out of T.G. monsters in the deck rather quickly, so of course they were given a themed Pot of Avarice in TGX3-DX2. Or you could fall back upon the other +1 card that also happens to recycle monsters back to your deck: Pot of Dichotomy. Odds are, you are running at minimum 4 types in the Main Deck. And then a ton more in the Extra Deck. To be blunt, you are going to have those 3 types in your Graveyard when you want to use Dichotomy, the decision you will have to make is when to give up your Battle Phase. So to recap, you gain advantage to setup your Synchro Summon. You gain advantage from the Synchro Monster itself (if you are smart about what you summon). You gain advantage after the Synchro Summon by recycling the materials… this just seems like a slam dunk to me.

The true T.G. boss monster hiding behind a different name…

Your Synchro Arsenal:

As I’ve stated many times by now, the power of the T.G. deck comes from its Extra Deck. Let’s start with the basics:

T.G. Hyper Librarian – While it was an amazing card outside of the T.G. deck, it is even better in it. When you can definitely make multiple Synchros during the same play, Librarian helps you keep advantage and then slowly gain it even further. Also, if your one Librarian goes down, you have more ways to recycle it than just about any deck!

T.G. Wonder Magician – Downright the best T.G. Synchro Monster. First off, it is a Tuner monster as well. So naturally, they gave it an ability to destroy a spell or trap on summon, which automatically compensates for the inherent -1 of the next Synchro Summon. (Same reasoning for the draw on Formula Synchron.) But the best part about the effect is the last line, the free draw when it is destroyed. I may be crazy, but look at it this way; Librarian may be a +1 but if you keep Synchro Summoning, but Wonder turns into a +1 if you stop. I am a passive player, I’ll be the first to admit that. I don’t play aggressively, I don’t tend to overextend. So cards that give me benefits for not going the extra mile in a Synchro play are perfect for me. Or if you are desperate and need to use a Synchro with TG1-EM1, it lets you get something back when it is destroyed.

T.G. Power Gladiator – The other Level 5 T.G. Synchro may not have the awesome +1’s built in like his fellow monsters, but instead he offers another themed Level 5 non-Tuner, since Librarian is now Limited due to the Plant Synchro abomination. If only Librarian were archetype-locked… 🙁 But this guy does have one notable use other than his piercing: he can attack over El Shaddoll Winda after a Normal Summon of T.G. Cyber Magician and synchroing with a T.G. in your hand.

T.G. Blade Blaster – That’s right, let’s meet one of the in-theme boss monsters. First off, it is pretty much untargetable. Secondly, if the opponent was going to try and be rid of it without targeting, you can just banish it for a turn. Oh, and he has 3300 ATK, which is amazing. The sad part is, for an Accel Synchro Summon, he really can’t repay the 4-monster investment on his own.

T.G. Recipro Dragonfly – Introducing the disgrace of the released archetype. This is literally the first and ONLY archetype-member Synchro (or Xyz for that matter) monster in the entire game that cannot be summoned by using archetype members. In order to summon this guy, you have to run outside support. It’s mean, and totally uncalled for. All Konami needs to do is release Drill Fish and Gear Zombie (see 2nd paragraph) and everything would be okay, as then this Synchro would have its T.G. combo. But sadly, thus is not to be. And its only role is to turn a Blade Blaster into the last T.G. Synchro…

T.G. Halberd Cannon – Did you know this is one of the few monsters Yusei could never beat? He managed to defeat Antimony in the end, but he never defeated the cannon. Even though an anime protagonist couldn’t kill Halberd, just about any Duelist irl can, as it can only negate one summon per turn. No other form of protection. Sadly, that doesn’t cut it for a 6-monster investment. But he has really cool art. And 4K ATK/DEF.

Shooting Quasar Dragon – Imagine this card has T.G. in the name, cause I’m treating it as a T.G. monster. This card is ‘The Ultimate Synchro’ for the theme. Double attacking, once per turn effect negation… it’s beautiful. While it needs a sizable investment and not just a Rekindlingthis Deck is not a one-trick pony, and simply has it as an option in the toolbox rather than as a win condition.

Naturia Barkion – This is just a wonderful Synchro to have if you are fearing a heavy backrow. Also, it along with Goyo Guardian and Vulcan the Divine are great Synchros to have when you don’t have one of the ‘Level 5 Synchro combos’, as T.G. Striker can Special Summon himself before you normal T.G. Rush Rhinofor an easy level 6 Synchro Summon. But you may be limited on space. This is T.G. after all.

Armades, Keeper of Boundaries and Ally of Justice Catastor – These two monsters are simply the jacks of all trade as other Level 5 Synchro options. Catastor kills stronger monsters that you can’t get over easily, and Armades gets over weaker monsters with devastating effects. The only thing these two can’t get over without aid is Beelze, but TG1-EM1 handles that just fine.

Scrap Dragon, Stardust Spark Dragon, and Crimson Blader – These monsters are your bread and butter Level 8’s. Sadly, Level 8 Synchros are few and far between for T.G.’s, albeit amazing when they do appear, therefore I advise that you pick two of the above based on what you fear the most.

Underworld Fighter Balmung – This Level 4 Synchro may not be amazing in terms of its effect (on par with the destruction theme), but he also fills the niche of the Level 4 Synchro in the absolute *tragic* case that you need to make Quasar with a Level 4 and a Level 6. Somehow. Although, feel free to use Armory Arm instead if you prefer having a more utility-based Synchro at your disposal.

Phonon Pulse Dragon – And we’re onto the last key player. You really didn’t think we were going to try and make Quasar with Wonder Magician, did you? Well this guy is actually a ton better than Formula in T.G.s. First off, it’s versatile. It can be any Level from 1-4 as the integral Tuner piece of your Accel or Delta Accel Synchro Summons. Secondly, it’s easily made. T.G. Cyber Magician + T.G. Warwolf or T.G. Striker + T.G. Dragon Catapult. Sadly, as I said before, there is no searchable Level 1 T.G. non-Tuner at the moment, and splashable Level 1’s really don’t help the deck all that much, as you really don’t want to be making Level 3 Synchros with Striker. And hell no, if you are considering Jet Falcon. Yes, I really just told you to consider only one half of a Level 5 Synchro combo, Catapult and not Falcon. I won’t go into this now, but Catapult gives you an additional Synchro combo, and gives you different Levels with which you can Synchro! We’ll get into that later.

Core Lineup for a T.G. Synchro Deck:

Monsters:
3 T.G. Rush Rhino
3 T.G. Warwolf
3 T.G. Striker
2|3 T.G. Cyber Magician
1 T.G. Dragon Catapult
2 Junk Synchron
Spells:
2|3 Pot of Dichotomy
2|3 Supply Unit
Traps:
3 Generation Shift
3 TG1-EM1
3 TGX3-DX2

So what does this core lineup tell you? First off, you got a lot of combo potential, even before you start rounding out the deck. And secondly, you have a ton of powerful support, none of which is on the banlist (anymore). The T.G. Synchro deck is amazing, and I hope you finally are starting to see all of the amazing combos available to you. Junk Synchron is best friends with the T.G.’s, as it lets you trigger Warwolf with a Striker from the Graveyard. While that’s all cool and all, I have to say my favorite ‘inclusion’ is to add Doppel Warrior if you just want to add more combos. NOTE: Running Reinforce Truth IS a possibility if you choose to add Doppel. With Doppel, all it takes is Junk and Doppel to put out Hyper Librarian and Phonon. And get a free draw. So you get 2 Synchros and 1 new card in hand for exchange for 2 SEARCHABLE cards. (Reinforcement of the Army is a thing.) If you didn’t know before reading this article that T.G. is a combo Synchro deck, you sure know now. But I’ll keep saying it because it is important, it is one of the few combo decks with the insane consistency to get what you want when you want it.

The Future of T.G. Synchro Variants:

While I haven’t done this in previous deck strategy articles, I think this may be an important addition and definitely something to talk about. The essential thing I need to say here is this: T.G. Synchro variants will keep getting better as they add possible Synchros to its arsenal. Mainly new Level 5 Synchros. While it would be great to finally get an in-theme level 1 non-tuner monster, this is not the case, and we must live with what we have. But most of all, we’ve already seen the result of new powerful generic options that go hand-in-hand with the T.G. deck. See Supply Unit. The deck skyrocketed in power with this one simple card, just the same as with Fire Kings or Scraps. Can you imagine if they made another card that easily triggered your own monsters for destruction? Perhaps the next generic card for T.G.’s is already here, you just haven’t realized it yet. Nefarious Archfiend Eater of Nefariousness anyone? It’s no Supply Unit; it doesn’t grant endless advantage. But it is a way to keep getting Level 4 non-tuners to your field, trigger Supply Unit when your opponent won’t attack, and heck, even getting another Synchro Material onto the field when you control Cyber Magician. This is just the first example of what may happen in the future, how T.G.’s could really jump into the spotlight even more. While the game may seem to be going in a direction that favors the T.G. imitators, the Yang Zing, don’t forget that the T.G. have all of the ways to keep advantage during a Synchro Summon, instead of relying on the Synchro’s effects to do all of the legwork for you.

Completed Example Deck:

For those of you who have completed reading this guide, it’s time to suit up! Random fact, did you know that all of the T.G. monsters were also treated as Machine-Type in the anime? That’s why they all have mechanical names! And yet none of them are machines!

The following link is a screenshot of my personal T.G. Synchro build. It may not be the best build for them, but it can serve as a baseline for your deck construction in the future: http://i.imgur.com/eg3v4eA.png

Unrelated Ending Note:

With this article, I celebrate a year writing for YGOrganization! (YAY!) With that, I’m inviting you to revisit a few of my past articles if you missed any of them! While you may be a competitive player, or someone who wholeheartedly hates ‘casuals’, a tiny bit of inspiration and innovation can go a long way in figuring out the best way to combat the meta. So I invite you to open your mind, try to see the game differently. Take a new angle, a new approach. See if you can take the meta by a storm with a rogue variant, as that’s all it takes to become net-decked to kingdom come! The following is a comprehensive list of all of the 23 deck strategy articles I have contributed over the last year!

Quincymccoy

Hello everybody! I serve as Number VIII of the Organization; however, my main role on the site is writing regular Deck Strategy articles! I enjoy fleshing out archetypes to their fullest potential and helping people discover amazing new techs and decks to try out!

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